August 31, 2007
August 30, 2007
I just landed the easiest weekend gig today... easily. I'm excited for it. Now I'm going to have extra cash for Coldstone Ice-Cream... YAY me! :D
Have a great holiday weekend, everyone! I know tons of you who are already gone for the weekend, you early starters. Hmph! Also... enjoy the beautiful sunshine!
Happy Birthday, Wady... * mwuah *
Sam apparently had no idea about the surprise dinner since he thought everyone went camping the day he arrived. He was a bit sad thinking our friends didn't stick around for him, but of course they did! I lied to him and told him that I was going to work, but really... I was driving around running errands picking up his cake at the best bakery in Seattle (in my opinion), going to try to find flowers (haha) and dropping it off with Grace... all while stuck in the Seattle traffic due to the I-5 closure. We were running late to our "reservations" so I called Grace pretending she's the host at the place... and Sam wondered why I didn't even give them my name. Pulled up to the place and Grace's car was parked in the very front! Oh my gosh... so glad Sam didn't notice it was her car, but he did notice the Asian people covering their faces when we got there! Haha... it was pretty funny! Oh... and he's getting so old, he couldn't even blow out all his candles at once... and there weren't even 26 on that thing! LOL...
August 29, 2007
Just beautiful, isn't it?
Our friends were gathered into a group, posing for a picture. Grace tapped this Go-Go Dancer on the shoulder and asked, "Can you take a picture for us?" The Go-Go Dancer was ecstatic and asked with glee, "With meeeee?" and Grace was like.... "Uh... no... OF us!" (pointing to all of our friends and herself) The Go-Go Dancer looked a bit disappointed with, "oh..." and took the camera and took our picture anyway.
Poor girl... so used to everyone wanting to take pictures with her that she seemed a bit heart broken to know that she was playing Photographer rather than Model for a few seconds. :)
August 28, 2007
August 27, 2007
Thank you to everyone who contributed their efforts and generous donations to this project despite the doubts and the ridicules. I knew that if we pull together, we can do it... and we will! Also, thank you very much to those who suggested potential organizations that you felt would be appropriate. I'll keep all of them in mind for further projects that come to mind. Thank you!
With the help of my good friend, now colleague, Sreynieng, we were able to narrow it down to one. Though we would love to, it is nearly impossible to make donations to all of the organizations we wished to at one time. Therefore, we have decided that after this project, we'll try to come up with more ways to raise money for the other organizations that we are neglecting for this project.
It was a hard selection process, but this organization seemed to be exactly what we were looking for. We tried to stay away from mainstream organizations that might have already received help from many others, yet, we needed a legitimate organization where it is assured that our money is going to the right places rather than someone's pocket or a big bank account where our money looked like chump change.
This organization is made up of all volunteers and always welcome more volunteers and visitors. There are about 140 orphans/students who reside there... they eat, sleep, AND school at the facilities. The kids are anywhere from 8 months to 20 years of age. Not all of the children are orphans, some are children that come from very poor households where they need the assistance from the schools to support them. The schools focus on Khmer traditional arts (ie. ballet, painting, music, sculptures, etc.), which is very important nowadays in hopes of preserving our arts and culture.
They have also agreed... actually... would love to give us a tour of the facilities. Kadin is the designated KC member who will be doing the honors of visiting the facilities and documenting her experience to share back with the rest of us here. She will be our respresentative and will be the person who makes the donation, hand to hand. Thank you Kadin for taking the time out of your vacation to fulfill this task for all of us!
Also, thank you Sreynieng for being our contact representative who contacted and spoke to the organization herself over the phone to retreive much information AND alert them of this project and our plans to visit their facilities. In her words, "this orphanage not only cares for the kids, but passes on sacred traditions. they've got my vote". I couldn't agree more... thank you!
Enough with my gibberish... here's the website where you can find even more information about the organization: http://cambokids.org
Also, if you are in the area and interested in visiting and volunteering yourself, I encourage you to do so! I'm sure they'd love to have you there!
Cambodian Light Children's Association
#127, V/L 15, Street Sothearos,
Sangkat Tonle Bassac, Khan Chamcarmom,
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Everyone else seems so into the bowling game and their eyes are on the game... whereas my eyes and main focus is on my food. So typical of me...
August 26, 2007
A friend asked me today, "How do you and Sam do it?", and I knew immediately that he was referring to our long distance relationship. I wish I could have given him a more confident, optimistic, and hopeful answer... but I knew that the truth was clear... its HARD.
A girl he'd been seeing shortly had left to another country for a few weeks... and the first three or four days are already troubling him and he's frustrated that he still has a couple more weeks to go. How can you blame him? How can anyone? My first thought was, "its only a few days and you're already crying? thats nothing!" I didn't say that, of course... because it IS something... and I would be just as frustrated. If a blanket kept you warm for some time, and all of the sudden, it drifts from you (even if its temporary), you'd feel the chills, coldness, and loneliness too... and you will be frustrated. I understood exactly where he was coming from.
Distance isn't an easy problem to fix, though people make it seem so easy when they tell you to just "pick up and leave already!". If it was that easy, I wouldn't be here rambling in this little blog of mine. There are many factors that play into this life changing decision... and though love conquers all, it doesn't eliminate the obstacles and tough decisions that need to be made before it conquers anything at all. Those are the headaches... and the heartaches.
I see my sweetheart about once every month or so. Sometimes the gap between the times we see each other are long, and sometimes they're short... but I manage to miss him more and more after each visit. Its getting harder and harder... and we're trying our best to hold on and pull through. I see no ending for us... just a really big pause. The times that we get to spend together, I remember just about every moment. I get spoiled during these times as where I am able to be next to him, be held and kissed by him. These are the true moments I cherish, hence the title of this blog. The hardest part of all though, is the entire day before someone's departure back home. This is when my eyes are almost always filled with tears and I just want to break down and cry and pray that the departure doesn't really have to happen... but we both know it does. Once someone walks towards that airport door, my heart drops and I feel the bruises beginning to form. Dramatic as it may sound, one wouldn't understand the feeling until they're in those shoes. It hurts. And then we return to our usual routines... where we wake up and no one is next to you, where meals are eaten without the one that makes your food taste so much better, where you walk without your half by your side, and go to bed... knowing they're not next to you and not knowing if they're keeping warm. Yes... those are only a few of the minor moments that make up the million reasons for my heartache.
If we look at the big picture, its easy to see that we're blessed with one of the greatest gifts, pleasures, and joy of life... and thats true love. True love thats hard to find, that is. I'm indeed thankful for this bigger picture and this man who loves me. I know that the little details that add up and make the bigger picture seems worthless when alone, but once grouped together, its something beautiful and rare... and its MINE.
This happiness of mine? It makes my often sense of loneliness look minute, weak, and nearly of no existence at all.
I don't think I'm a shallow person nor do I encourage people to base their lives on their appearance, but it also irritates me when people claim they don't care... but then run to the bathroom to powder their nose. Bleh.... stop lying to yourself.
Anyway, I've set new weight goals! Haha... I know this seems a bit pathetic to write out, but oh well... I'll do it anyway since this is my journal in which acts as an outlet for my mind and thoughts. Besides, I think its best to put goals in writing so they can be referred to during the process and after goal is met (or not). It can also act as motivation and a reminder, "Thyda... you've got goals to meet... get working!" I think I'll also update through this journal... and if people have problems with it, then they're silly for even trying to read my blog in the first place! ;)
Goal: At 5'7... I would like to lose at least one pound per week. Desired weight is 125 pounds. If weekly goals are met regularly, desired weight should be met in 14 weeks from today. (Do the basic math)
If I can lose up to two pounds a week, I'd be thrilled... and will definitely reward myself (not a brownie, of course!)... but I'll keep my goal realistic for now. Diet isn't too much of a problem, I just need to actually work out more! Ahhhh... if you're reading this and feel like I'm not sticking to my words, either remind me... or just slap me already!
My boyfriend is VERY in shape and has a great body. Sometimes, I feel quite incompetent and afraid people would question why a buff stud like him would be with an ogre like me. Wahhh...
I wanna look GOOD too, dammit!
My personal health and appearance had been my motivation before... but now, HE is my other motivation! Besides, there's a wedding in June where I have to look good at! ;)
Sagittarius (Nov. 23 - Dec. 21)Your way with words should serve you
quite well now, so see if you can get some new business at work or convince a friend to go along with your latest nutty scheme. Things are looking up for sure!
Nice... I'll take this as a hint and continue talking the way I do. Never realized I had a special way with words that can actually become beneficial. I guess I'll try to apply this way of mine off KC as well. :)
August 25, 2007
I used to spend my summer mornings in the berry or bean fields before dawn... rain or shine. I was embarrassed at the fact my entire family had to work in the fields just to put food on the table at the time, but I was naive and at the age where reputation amongst peers was important and held much value to me. Stupid, Thyda. Now, I am proud to say that I knew what hard work is and have worked hard. My family never got anything handed to them and nothing came easy... but we pulled through anyway. Not knowing how to speak much English, my parents were able to provide for all EIGHT of their children... eight. How? With very little sleep, rest, and leisure... climbing mountains to pick beargrass and sell them for about a quarter a bundle... AFTER bringing it home to clean up, of course. They'd leave the house before sunrise... and return only a few hours before they would have to leave and go through the exact same routine the very next day. With all due respect, people think that sewing in their homes just to get by was hard? Heck... that would be leisure to my parents and my family... to be in a sheltered place where its a bit warmer and lunch (which usually consisted of cold rice and meat... left overs from the day prior) wasn't eaten on the side of the road... out of tupperware.
Yes, its a shame that my parents who had very little resources were able to provide for themselves and their eight children.... while I have unlimited resources and luxuries, a great job in an air conditioned office where funds are automatically deposited into my bank account every two weeks, and I still struggle financially.
I have issues... and need to learn how to be more responsible with my money. Financial advisor needed... willing to pay once funds are sufficient and stable.
I know that I usually get overly excited and jump the gun when I shouldn't, but I can't help being the eager person that I am. I have many more projects in mind in which I know is very possible as well if only I had the help of others. Nowadays, its rarely possible to make a difference for others by yourself... its a team effort.
I don't see myself as a die hard humanitarian, but it does give me a sense of fulfillment and happiness when I know that conditions or a situation is better for someone... especially when its someone who is in need, of course. Maybe one day after I do more walking than just talking, I can see myself as one. Right now, I am inspired.
As for the title of this blog... thank you "ah bong" for pointing out that my words and thoughts I've shared with you was like an "I have a dream..." speech. I do have a dream... I do.
A friend of mine pointed out to me yesterday, "you've changed". Thinking that he meant I have changed in a negative way, I tried to get him to tell me how I've changed... and if it was such a bad thing. I know that I have switched in my nonstop partying every night that ends with a "y" ways for a more reserved and kick back and relax at home ways, but I don't see how thats such a bad thing. I guess we can't please everybody. When I was once upon a time a party girl, Thyda... everyone thought I was just that... a party girl. I hated that title and that image everyone perceived me as because I know that I am much much more than just that. Now that I am out and about only once a week, if not less, people give me crap for this "change" and have deemed me an old hag or a party pooper. What is a girl to do to avoid giving these misperceptions of me? I know that its safe to keep out of the extremes, but I thought that just going out on special occasions such as friends' birthdays or other celebrations would be moderate, but apparently, its not.
I know I should care less of what and how others perceive me, but how can I fully ignore it when I have some pride and it bothers me when people see me for who I am not? As much as one denies caring of what people think of them, you know we all do at some point... just to different extents.
So tell me.... am I wrong for changing? I thought changes were normal and we all go through it at times... but why do I get shit for changing? Hmmm...?
August 23, 2007
I have much to do... and I'm disappointed in myself because right now, all my goals seem like nothing more than just dreams. What's wrong with me? I need to really wake up... so I can grow up.
August 22, 2007
This was my second year being involved in the event as a Master of Ceremony. I admit that I love being on stage, but especially love interacting with people in a fun way. Although I get a chance to do both as a Master of Ceremony, I think I find more enjoyment in trying to help pull everything together. I love planning and trying to figure things out... trying to find ways to make things run smoothly... it gives me an adrenaline rush.
I already have ideas for next year and how to make it better. All due respect to the rest of the committee, although this year was another successful turnout, I just know that the whole process could have been a little bit more organized. Putting together such a big and well recognized and anticipated event cant be stressful and very time consuming, but thats all a part of dedication. Truthfully, I could have been a bit more dedicated with this event, and I wish I could have been more involved if it wasn't for the miscommunication where everything was sent to an old contact/email address of mine. But hey... now that thats all figured out and cleared up, there's no excuse for me anymore... I will be more involved.
This year, along with being one of the few Master of Ceremonies, I was also the Raffle and Prizes Coordinator. The duty was pretty last minute, but thats okay... we pulled through. It was a bit disappointing that not all the prizes were given though due to the rain that caused people to leave before the event was over and the prizes had to be put away before they soiled in the rain. I'll stay optimistic and look at the bright side... we already have plenty of prizes ready to be given away in next year's event! :)
Its great to see the unity the day of the event and the night prior where we all pulled together and helped out... trying to set up for our big day! Sam and I didn't leave the park after setting up until around 10pm. It was dark... and we survived by flashlights and car headlights... but thats what it took to get things done. The poor guy, it was his birthday too! :( I felt guilty for putting him to work all throughout his birthday weekend, but he was very supportive and understanding, and I am very thankful for that. If you think staying until 10pm was bad, there were plenty more people who stayed throughout the night trying to set up the stage and everything else after we left. Kudos to them!
The event itself was great... but it had to pour down rain on the final race. Everyone was bummed out and ran for covers and some even left... but once the race started, people ran back to the edge of the water to watch and support the final teams... despite the crazy rain! It was amazing to witness. The cheering, chanting, dancing, smiles, and UNITY seen after it all was all worthwhile...
Okay okay.... its a cute song, we can share! LOL... but this IS your song though.... hehe!
August 13, 2007
I love living back at home because I'm closer to my family, but there comes a point when the line needs to be drawn and something needs to be said. As big of feet as I have, I still can't seem to put a foot down. Ironic, isn't it?
I have places to go, other people I need to see, and things I need to get down. Heck... I know its my fault for procrastinating on some things I should have gotten done awhile back, but people interfering with my agenda... especially when there's time restraints... is irritating.
I know its sometimes selfish of me to only think of myself and my needs, but if others (sibs) were a bit more selfless, I wouldn't have to be in a situation where I have to think as selfishly as I do, do I? Nope.
Irritated. So so irritated...
August 10, 2007
August 9, 2007
August 8, 2007
August 7, 2007
Damn... I really need to prettify myself and spend more time getting ready. This half assed BS just ain't cuttin' it. Maybe I'll have time to since I have no laptop to log on KC with anymore! Hmph!
August 6, 2007
I hope you get elecrtocuted trying to hold in that loose adaptor to the power supply. Other than that, the battery lasts about 7 minutes... 8 if you're really lucky.
I HATE YOU!
August 5, 2007
Sagittarius (Nov. 23 - Dec. 21)
Now's a great time to start new lines of communication around the house. It could be that things have gotten stuck, or maybe you just need to open up a much-needed conversation about a difficult topic.
August 4, 2007
August 3, 2007
August 1, 2007
As I have stated before in one of my many ramblings either in this blog, forums, or general discussions elsewhere... camp is so much more than it seems. When I first heard about camp, I was definitely interested and insisted on witnessing it all for myself. My first year at camp (2006) was an amazing and memorable experience. Definitely a few days that I will remember and reminisce today and in the future.
Its definitely heartwarming to see that there are so many generous and kind hearts out there who want to give these orphans a place to call home. We seem to take things for granted everyday and sometimes we forget that there are those out there who don't exactly have a home like most of us do. There are people out there who don't have people to call "family" initially... but lets face it... we all need our families... it being our biological families, adoptive families, or extended families. I can only imagine how lonely it would feel to not have a family to call my own... and no one should have to feel that sense of loneliness.
Most people are blessed to have a loving home and family at birth... but there are some who are not as fortunate. Can you imagine how it would feel to try to survive in a third world country with no shoulder to lean on or a hand to help when you need it most? They are not deprived of these things by choice, but by fate. Life seems to throw many obstacles at us and usually its up to us to dodge the obstacles, fix the problems, or lend a helping hand when needed.
I have gained a high amount of respect and admiration for adoptive families... parents. Raising a child is not an easy task... much time, money, and dedication is needed. To welcome another human being into a home and a family with open arms is a beautiful, difficult, and generous gesture that not everyone has the initiative or heart to do. I am thankful for these people to have given so much to people who were once strangers.... Thank You. It just goes to show that the people are selfless and have big hearted... and there's not too many of them out there.
We can't seem to thank them enough for giving children of our country a warm and safe home and family to turn to... but to take the initiative to send their children and themselves to camp is just a whole new level. To see that they care so much for their children to want their children to know the culture and people of their birth country is much more than anyone could even imagine to ask for. I am proud to see that people of other races appreciate and value our culture so much for them to take their time and spend so much effort into their attendance at camp. This is why I get so worked up when people are pessimistic about the intentions of camp and the attendees. To all the people who have said negative things, I am sure you'd swallow your words back if you were to only witness it for yourselves.
Parents and families... Thank You.
I admit that camp is and always had been a great place to meet people and create everlasting friendships with. Please don't assume that the main intentions of all the volunteers is to meet people and hang out. Matter of fact, the time that we have to ourselves (counselors) is very little. Our schedules are jam packed. Let me give a rundown of what the days are like:
Breakfast by 8am
Pick up kids between 8:30am-9am
Attend workshops with our groups up until noon
Lunchtime from noon until 1pm
(We all lunch together... and most kids are with us during this time)
Attend more workshops with our groups from 1pm-4pm
Breaktime after kids are picked up from 4pm-4:30pm
Dinner around 5pm-6pm
Scheduled activities w/ the families around 6:30-7pm until 10pm or later
Back to our cabins where we actually REST or mingle until curfew at midnight where we return to our seperate boy/girl cabins
... day starts all over again the next morning.
You see... the volunteers are not spending anywhere from $200-$500 on airfare just to go meet and mingle with their peers. We're there truly for the kids. We are not the richest of people and we have our schedules that we take time out of to attend camp. Sure, meeting and working with our peers is pure icing on the cake and it is very memorable and an honor to be able to work with such great people who share the same feeling towards camp and its people -- WE LOVE IT ALL.
Counselors -- I love you all. Its great to have met and know such loving, caring, and selfless people. I don't think I've ever worked with such a cooperative and dedicated bunch in anything. I can honestly say that the children at camp definitely have great role models to look up to... and so do I. The unity and smiles that y'alls bring and allow me to witness is very empowering... thank you. I hope to keep in touch with all of you and hopefully we can all work together to strengthen the growth of camp. I love how we all bond and are free to express ourselves in respectable manners... together. I can't wait to see all of you again... honest.Thank you to all the friends that I have made and to the many that I have learned so much from. There isn't another group of peers that I would rather work and collaborate with... y'alls are just too awesome for any more words.
And now... to my kids... I miss y'alls. I don't know why I'm getting all teary just thinking about you guys. Never have I thought that little strangers that I only spend a few days with can change me or mean so much to me. You munchkins are a handful, yanno that??? But I would lose sleep over you guys any day and any chance I am given the opportunity. You may see me as your role model... but just know that you guys are MY role models too! Such bright children... feisty and amazing... ahhhh... I can't think of all the right words to describe you guys because you guys are just too much!
I know that it was kind of awkward at first, but you guys were so free spirited and took my hand as your friend almost immediately! I know that I might have sounded "mean" if I told you that I can't be your partner or hold your hand, but it was only because I had to be fair to all nearly 20 of you in my team. If I could, I'd have 20 hands for each of you to hold and 20 laps for each of you to sit on! You may not realize this, but I really do feel all warm and giddy inside whenever you guys give me hugs or kisses on the cheek! I love how we were all so energetic and so ready to chant out our team colors whenever we had the chance. Y'alls definitely got spirit... yes you do!
Spending time with you guys was just amazing. I had more fun during those few days with you than an entire year without you... no joke! I didn't want to leave either. When you tell me that I'm like your big sister and that you look up to me, thats the biggest compliment I've ever received. Trust me when I say that I miss you much much more than you can ever miss me because its been nearly two weeks now and there's not a day that passed that I didn't go through your pictures or talked about you to one of my friends or coworkers. You guys really did leave a footprint in my heart (figuratively speaking of course). I sit here and wonder how you're doing and what you're doing... all the time!
We'll see each other again next year... that I promise you. And yes Jenny... even if we aren't in the same group, we'd still hang out every chance we get. Lunchtime is short, but we'll make time... I promise again.
I love you all...
P.S. I really wish I can share all of my kids' pictures... but I respect the parents' wishes to not post them. Please don't be surprised if the only pictures you see are of the counselors and other volunteers... they are all a huge part of camp as well. :)