today is the last day of my current life. it’s the end of an era. a brand new chapter is on the next page. after a year and a half chock-full of learning and growth, i am leaving the clayton christensen institute for disruptive innovation . i’m headed to utah this afternoon to spend time with friends and family for two and a half weeks, and when i return, i will start working in a new position at alpha public schools in san jose. today as i was driving up the 280 to the office, i felt such a peculiar feeling – triumph mixed with melancholy mixed with preeminent longing mixed with relief mixed with sorrow mixed with peace. i was just filled to the brim with the most intense surreal bittersweet. my journey at the christensen institute has been a truly incredible trip. i am tremendously grateful for this rich and varied experience that has built me. the things i have learned from this amazing opportunity have impacted my character in ways that will impact me and all those i interact w
Showing posts from June, 2013
last saturday morning i went to a beginning zazen meditation class at the san francisco zen center. after learning about posture and awareness, we sat in meditation for fifteen minutes. urban sounds drifted in the open windows, the air got thick with our breath, and the sun cast beams of light on the bamboo floor as we all attempted to let go, to give in and savor peace. i thought about choosing happiness, i felt the blood run through my veins, and i let go. after the class, kelsey, beth and i sat in the sun in the gorgeous courtyard and talked quietly. i felt such lovely unshackled tranquility. peace is a calm assurance that it’s okay or it’s going to be okay … but often for me that doesn’t feel enough, because i don’t want to be okay. i want to be super awesome !!! lately i have been practicing letting go of the super awesome and realizing that it’s okay that it’s okay. the saviour said, “peace i leave with you, my peace i give unto you; let not your heart be troubled, neither
the pledge class brunched together on saturday in the city. we caught up about jobs and boys. we ate strawberry rhubarb hazelnut pancakes and banana coconut macadamia french toast and giggled in the corner table. we realized it has been nearly three whole years since we moved to san francisco, all within a month of each other. and then, naturally, we found a cool mint colored wall around the corner and had a lil photo shoot. i love these girls by the bay.
i just felt like the first day of summer couldn’t pass by without enjoying a frozen treat to celebrate! josephine and i had a lovely dinner date in downtown palo alto and then stopped by fraiche for some sugar-free, probiotic frozen yogurt with summer berries. we sat outside in the oh-so-kind summer air. when we went our separate ways to our cars just after 9, the sky was still holding some lovely azure light. hooray for the longest day of the year! josephine just got back from our wellesley 5-year reunion, which i was so sad to miss. (i did get a text from jo during the reunion though, telling me that she and all our college friends had run into my sisters and nieces on campus! what a fantastic serendipity!) crazy to think that it has been nearly nine years since i met this girl in the dining hall at the stone-davis dorms. cheers to another summer full of dusky 9pms ahead!
going to my niece’s dance concert a couple of weeks ago brought back so many memories for me. i reflected to my mom and sister after gracie’s performance that i felt my experience with dance rivals all treasured, character-building experiences in my life. i want to record and share this significant life story – so here’s a start: (i wish i had more pictures and more time and capacity to explain what this experience means to me...) when i was just six or seven, my mom signed me up for ballet. i was excited at first, but quite quickly became disenchanted. before long, i was begging my mom to let me quit. i had a strict teacher and i just didn’t want to work so hard. i remember that my mom encouraged me to keep going, telling me that “hard is good,” but i persisted until she succumbed, and we didn’t re-register at the end of the school year. by sixth grade, the unquitting neighborhood girls i had started taking ballet with were getting quite good. they’d tell me they couldn’t p
-with the boy, ate the most delicious dumplings and life-changing garlic string beans at kingdom of dumplings , a hole in the wall in the outer sunset -drove over the golden gate bridge at golden hour and walked along a happened-upon path in the headlands as day turned to night -watched the city’s sparkle come out behind the bridge’s vermillion towers from the look-out point -hung out in the common room at the marin headlands hostel (it is so so cool! old historic buildings in the middle of nowhere yet just minutes from one of the world’s most dynamic metropolis), met some people cool people from different parts of the world, and slept in bunk beds. -soaked up the buzz and gleam of the ferry building, sampled lots of peaches and berries and cheese, marveled at the summer flowers (pictured above) on sale, and ate the most incredibly fluffy and delicious waffle of your life -stood on the bow of a ferry boat, getting slammed with wind and chill, as it cruised under the golden gate brid
my dearest, darlingest friend sara lives 6,094 miles away on a little spot in the sea called okinawa. i had high hopes for a visit to her tropical island this summer, and then high hopes of spending some time with her in utah while she was in the states for her brother’s wedding. circumstance, finances and scheduling left me quite hopeless of both of those prospects. i was just feeling so sad that i didn’t know when the next time would be that i could see my dearest, darlingest friend. and then! last thursday i got a text from japan. sara and her husband matt had a three hour layover in san francisco the very next day!!! i had a meeting at work in the middle of their time in california, but was able to shoot over to the airport with thirty minutes to spare. after a bubbly reunion, we stood on the top level of the parking lot under the warm sun and talked about okinawa and palo alto and the past and the future. a blessed half an hour. i love sara + matt a lot .
my dad is absolutely one in a million. one in a trillion, really. he is incredibly unique, and he’s far and away the most self-assured person i’ve ever met. my whole life i’ve known that he is an eccentric individual, and the zaniness just increases every year, it seems. at the center of all his quirks, he has the most golden heart. and just thinking about his sterling goodness puts a lump of adoration, admiration and appreciation in my throat. i can’t believe how blessed i am to have this crazy cool man as my dad, and i am completely inadequate in expressing the love, esteem and gratitude i feel for him. when i was in college, i took a memoir writing class, and decided to write a piece about my father. as i worked through revisions, my professor and classmates totally fell in love with my dad. they seriously couldn’t wait to read more stories, to hear more anecdotes about him. this guy is quite the charismatic and endearing character. on this father’s day, i wanted to share exce
you know how sometimes you just want to be with your mom?? lately, i’ve really craved that familiarity, that nurturing, that unconditionalness – this girl just needed her mama. so when my mom told me she was heading to phoenix to visit my sister and see my niece gracie’s dance concert, i said “i wanna go!” and we booked a last-minute ticket. a quick weekend with my mom plus my sister and her family? – yes, please. we decided not to tell grace and her sisters that i was coming, and it was so fun to surprise them on friday night! my mom and i shared grace’s double bed that night and it was pretty cathartic to lay in the dark talking with her. the next morning we got the treat of being able to watch shawni give a speech about motherhood at a conference in mesa. she did an awesome job and it was so great to be there. mom and i got to help a little with the presentation. and then we rushed to grace’s dance concert, which was so so fun! it brought back a lot of amazing memories of my
birthdays are strange. for me, all those june 12ths are just so wrapped up in attachments, expectations, memories, longings, wonderings, and strivings. developing a happy relationship with birthdays has been something i’ve had to work on throughout my life, and there’s still a lot for me to learn. lately i have been thinking a lot about the power of letting go, and my birthday was a good opportunity to practice that. this year, best as i could, i tried to cultivate lots of gratitude amidst the essential celebrations. here are some things that i felt super thankful for on this birthday: -california sunshine that steams in my window in the mornings. -friends from all over the world and all different eras of my life and the incredible experiences i have had with them. -a big family so very full of love (there’s for sure some diffusion of birthday specialness when there are 42 people in your immediate family – yet the love communicated and felt, and certainly not just one day a year, is
and just like that, 26 becomes 27. growing up sometimes feels so hard. i will revel in that lush travail. and celebrate the whole dizzyingly diverse array of lived mortality. i am grateful for twenty-seven years of being alive. i am astounded by all the beauty that has been crammed into my mortal existence, including and especially the searing, beautiful pain. i am thankful for the hollowing and the filling and the mending and the overflowing. and somehow, i am grateful that twenty-seven doesn’t look like i imagined it might look. mostly, i am thankful for the hope that streams through my veins that tells me that certainly the best is yet to come.
of all the roles i play in my life – sister, daughter, friend, cousin, granddaughter, researcher, sister-in-law, chorister, roommate, neighbor, colleague… – the one i love the most is aunt . i first became an aunt when i was just eleven years old, and i have now become an aunt twenty-four times over. i remember being so astounded by the love that i felt for my first few nephews and nieces. the real incredible part is that that love just keeps multiplying. oh, i love all those kids so, so much – i’m kind of obsessed with them. seriously, every one of my nieces and nephews is really cool in his or her own unique way. they each teach me so much and are all such good souls and are some of my most beloved friends in the world. seeing my siblings as parents is one of the best things ever. i am so very grateful for their examples in parenting – and for providing all the rad cousins my kids will have! the oldest just turned 16 ^^ and the youn
kelsey and steph slept over at my house on saturday night and after church in the morning, we took a little stroll around stanford. every time i am on campus, i feel that unique academia thrill – maybe you know what i am talking about? it reminds me how much i love school and the buzz of learning and collaborating for increased knowledge. it was a hot afternoon, so we cooled off in the hoover fountain. did you know that it’s totally kosher to get in any of the fountains on stanford’s campus? there’s no rules against it, and on very balmy days, students in bathing suits will hop right in. i think that’s really cool! after kelsey and steph headed back to the city, i laid under a tree on the grass and called family and wrote in my journal. it was quite blithe. i am grateful for the rejuvenation of weekends.
it was such a glorious, sensational, radiant day! my favourite girls and i went to pt. lobos and santa cruz and strawberry picking in davenport. to celebrate being alive, to soak up the smashing weather, to welcome summer, and to cross some things of my before-birthday list ! we started with brunch with a view at california market just past carmel … then strolled through the monterey pine forest at pt. lobos… to the bird island trail. the views were exquisite. china cove just may have become my favourite place on the peninsula. it felt like we were on a tropical island! sugar white sand, crystal clear then emerald/teal water… we walked along the coast… and then cut back to highway one through the lace lichen groves (isn’t that moss magical?!). we stopped at some produce stands along the one… and ate some deep fried artichoke hearts (castroville is the artichoke capital of the world!) – yum! we went to walton lighthouse in santa cruz (i’ve been wanting to see it!)… and then laid