Tag Archives: tourism

Flashback F r i d a y

We have been home for 8 months. C h i n a still feels like yesterday, but at the same time feels like a dream from years ago. In honor of Flashback Friday, here are some snaps from our last days in the beautiful country.

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We had a sweet lunch with these two beauties. It was a bitter-sweet meal knowing that it was our last one together.

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Duo Duo. This silly girl brought us so much laughter. She was a sweet blessing to adopt for the summer. She still has a piece of our hearts. ❤

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All packed and ready to train to Beijing. This is the last shot I took of Oz in our room.

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The overnight train was something like 12 hours. I was so happy to have gotten the bottom bunk this time…those beds stack three high!

IMG_2005Our last meal in Beijing with our buddy. This dish is T H E best food in the whole world. My mouth is literally watering right now.

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Travel in China just wouldn’t be complete without a little mafan. Oz’s bag was “randomly selected” to be searched. Later we were told it had something suspicious in it. There was nothing random about their selection. This is Oz’s expression in response to the love/hate relationship with mafan. [[suspicious item? the camera tripod.]]

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At our gate! Ready to fly to Japan! Behind me is the vending machine full of water and beer. Something we knew we would not be seeing in the States any time soon.

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Our bird. We sat in the wing seats and tried to realize that this was it. Homeward bound. That was a weird day. Lots of excitement to look forward to. Lots of sorrow of leaving our home we grew to love and belong to. Here‘s a flashback to before we left and one here for the first update being home. I can’t begin to tell you how much is still hidden in between the two.

On this flashback Friday I’m grateful for our many memories and thousands of pictures from three months in China. Perhaps I’m ready to start unloading the stories I’ve been keeping in my treasure box. There are so many gems to unpack. Even though its a bit daunting of a task, I feel so honored to have the gems in the first place. We have a lifetime of stories and experiences that I will cherish over and over and over again. It would be wrong to keep them locked away. Hmm…time to figure out where to start?!

Grateful,

Bee

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The Run or Dye Gremlins

Let me start by saying, I am not a runner. I was the girl who always seemed to have ‘that time of the month’ every time we had to run the mile in high school P.E. class. It’s a miracle they didn’t recommend I see a doctor. Actually, I’m a little offended they didn’t. Now, if you say I can run a 5K without it being timed (pressures off) while getting to throw colorful powder on my friend and myself, that takes the lame and most of the pain out of it and I say…Let’s do this.

Here’s the story via my iPhone pics…

My friend AlliJo is one of the most fun people you will ever meet. When I rallied people to run with me a good two months before the race, she was ALL IN! I knew the race would be that much better with this girl as my side-kick. Or me as hers? Anyhow, we started off in all black. You may notice that most/practically all of the other runners wore white. This would seem like the best decision until your friend of a friend tells you other wise and you do a last minute/night before the race wardrobe change.. Black is the canvas you want. The stars don’t shine against a white sky, folks, and neither does colorful powder. Go black or go back (home).

Without color on your person, life is just dull and you can’t seem to find joy or satisfaction, as shown in these photos below.

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The Run or Dye kit provided us with two super rad tattoos. Obviously, one had to be applied to a cheek. Just a word of wisdom, these tattoos are not your average Fruit Stripe tattoos…they will resist a good scrub down which is not ideal when you have a wedding two days later and there are still bits of mangled color specs on your face and bicep. Thanks hindsight, a little late with the FYI.

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Before the race began we were already covered in dye. We thought we were so cool “covered” in color. Little did we know how little covered we actually were…If you’re planning on running this race, brush up on your bartering skills…Scope out who has colors you don’t have and learn to sell your color because chances are, you are a little too hot pink and you need cobalt blue and golden yellow!

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You’ll notice below there are two other Black canvases…they were the o n l y two other black canvases and this created a bond between the four of us. Minorities stick together, they just get each other. Every time we ran past each other someone would yell, “Black canvas!” Support.

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I LOVE the atmosphere of this race. Everyone is there for a fun time that is also great for your health physically and mentally and emotionally. We somehow started morphing  into gremlins during the race, that should say something about the level of fun we were having. Or the seriousness of our insanity. Note, the claws above?

After the race, groups of friends were taking fun photos. AlliJo and I started asking strangers to take our pics too, because that’s what you have to do.

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Then, we had a brilliant idea.

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PHOTOBOMBING GREMLINS!

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I spy a black canvas in the below pic…can you find her?IMG_3773

Gremlin attack below!IMG_3774

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Even I got bombed!

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On the way back to the car we had prime opportunity to take our Gremlinhood to the streets. Vulernable runners stuck in a single lane exit with their windows down were just asking for it. This squat is my landing of a giant gremlin jump and scream to spook the passengers…I’m so glad their reflex was to laugh and not to punch.

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Gremlin stalking:

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All in good fun.

As you can see below, being covered in color is way more fun than not being covered in color. We were stained for days, but it was well-worth it. Three weeks later and I am still Q-tipping red out of my left ear.

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The powder will definitely highlight where you sweat…embrace it.

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So here is the link to the Run or Dye website that will tell you when it comes to your city. I highly recommend signing up (A-Jo and I bought a Groupon and only had to pay half the price!) and invite your best buds to join too. I guarantee this race will find a special place in your heart. And/or your ear.

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Sneaking up on the Desert at night

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Oz and I are really close. So, when we realized a year (ish) ago that our only tent was a “two-person” tent (how small do they think people are?) we didn’t mind having to shimmy into our tent feet first and spooning all night. We aren’t large people, so the tight space had always provided a cozy sleeping environment. However, this size tent wasn’t as practical for two people going camping as other tents would have been. My parents knew of our cocoon-home and last Christmas gifted us with a beautiful four-person tent with windows and everything! Deluxe!

All that to say, last weekend was our first excuse to use our new mansion and my did we enjoy it. It was glorious to have the option of standing, to walk a few paces if we so desired and to have enough room to change without being horizontal! My favorite feature? The mesh ceiling. It allowed me this experience:

This by far was my favorite part. In the middle of the night the desert chill interrupted my sleep and I couldn’t settle back into warmth, even with my bear of a husband next to me. With no sounds around me besides nature’s whisper of a breeze and the trees cracking in their own slumber, I suddenly felt so aware of the stillness around me. I bravely opened my eyes, risking not being able to fall asleep again and was taken aback by the sight. Looking straight up into the night, the stars were my mobile and I was a child mesmerized and captured by their endless glow and patient movement. Take this in, Bee. Breathe. I closed my eyes to feel my body experiencing this moment. I was so aware. The snaps of the tent walls being pushed by the wind, the dry air poking my tired yet grateful eyes and cheeks, icing my nose, the absence of voices that had muffled this beauty. The beauty of being there, being still, being an audience of the desert in the seat of each of my senses. This is when the desert is awakens. So uninterrupted by visitors and sounds. I opened my eyes one last time to see how far the Big Dipper had moved. How far I had moved. Its a new moment. I breathe in deep the cold air. It is drenched with the scent of earth; dirt and Jojoba leaves, but this is clean and fresh. I drew my head under the thin blankets and tried to find sleep again. I was rid of the bitter cold and the tense muscles that fought it. I was calm and giddy to rediscover slumber, this time with the inspiration of the desert night ready to invade my dreams.

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With enough consumption of hot dogs, whiskey’n’coke, and vegan franks to last me till next time, thank you J-Tree for showing us a good time.

Love always,

Bee

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Whad’ya mean its March?

Seriously, I know I can’t be the only one who is still writing 2012 on my checks. I am amazed at how quickly this year is flying by. It has truly been fun though. There have been lots of parties, game nights, family birthday dinners, and crafting. Oz and I are loving living blocks away from Balboa Park and the SD Zoo! If you have not been to either of those places then cross out your next vacation and reroute pronto! Here are a few snippets of our day at the Park.IMG_3127 IMG_3085IMG_1235 IMG_3094IMG_1229DSC_8748 DSC_8782 IMG_3101DSC_8669 IMG_3114 IMG_3133 IMG_3134 IMG_1230

There are so many fun things to do in Balboa. You could easily spend the whole day there exploring the Science museum, going to an IMAX movie, holding a beautiful bird (I’ve come a long way from from fear of birds…), listening to great street music and catching a fun magic show. There are amazing gardens to walk through that will not only romance your eyes but also your nose with their sweet smells. The museums are endless and they always have great attractions coming and going. Thank goodness San Diego is sunny all year long!

Next weekend we’re going to spend time camping in Joshua Tree with some friends. I predict loads of fun will be had. Update to come.

Cheers to Sunshine,

Bee

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