Monday, October 29, 2007


My cholesterol level is 317. You might think I am lying and am actually a 500-pound truckdriver who never exercises and only eats fast food. Mysteries of the internet...

Seriously, 317. I have just turned 34 years old, I have 3 children, no gall bladder, tonsils or adenoids, but otherwise really healthy. I am scared and have let barely a hint of cholesterol pass my lips since I discovered this fact a week ago. I am already on meds, hopefully just until I get it down to a reasonable level, I have kicked up my workout routines and am eating only what God has made, nothing processed.

It's all about the cholesterol reduction right now.

Other updates:
*We had a fantastic time in Friday Harbor, I could seriously live there.
*We are supposed to sell our house THIS FRIDAY...please, please let it happen
*We have to have everything OUT of our house this 10:00 a.m. - YIKES.
*D is rocking school, but it takes every waking hour.
*I am swamped at work and preparing to start my PhD program on Dec. 3...I think I have lost my mind, but am very excited.
*The kids are so very excited about Halloween, they are so stinking cute and had a party on Saturday where they dressed up, so cute that I almost wanted to break my ban on posting their pics, but I will try to withhold.

Despite all of this, I am relieved that I live in a country where I have access to healthcare and medications and that I can afford this healthcare.

Life is still this good.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Pchum Ben Festival

Our two girls who still live in Cambodia, L and L, are always near and dear to our hearts. One commented to me recently about the upcoming Pchum Ben Festival in Cambodia and I had to stupidly admit that I had no idea what it was, so I turned to Prof. Google and thought I would enlighten my memory in the future and any readers who might be so inclined to want to know...

One of our girls said that people visit their families and travel far sometimes, but that unfortunately they could not visit theirs - meaning us, this makes my heart so heavy. But, there is nothing more we can do but provide for them in Cambodia the best we can and love and pray for them, which we do.

"In Cambodia, there are various religious festivals. Among those, Prachum Benda (”Ancestors’ Day”), more commonly known as Pchum Ben, is a big Cambodian religious festival, culminating in celebrations on the 15th day of the tenth month in the Khmer Calendar. It lasts for fifteen days. Pchum Ben is the fifteenth and final day of the ceremony and consists of a large gathering of laity for festivities at the local Buddhist temple. The days leading up to Pchum Ben are known as Kann Ben. In 2007, the holiday falls on the 11th of October in the Gregorian calendar.

Religiously, Cambodians believe that although most living creatures are reincarnated at death. However, due to bad karma, some souls are not reincarnated but rather remain trapped in the spirit world. Each year, for fifteen days, these souls are released from the spirit world to search for their living relatives, meditate and repent. So, the fifteen-day is time when Cambodians pay their respects to deceased relatives. Furthermore, it is an important opportunity for living relatives to meditate and pray to help reduce the bad karma of their ancestors, thus enabling the ancestors to become reincarnated and leave the torment and misery of the spirit world. People cook meals for monks, bring offerings to the temple and throw rice near the temple early in the morning, believing that their ancestors will receive it.

Prachum Benda (Pchum Ben): meaning “gathering together to make offerings”
Prachum (Pchum): meaning “gathering together”
Benda (Ben): mean “offering”
Kann meaning “hosting or holding”
Khmer Institute"

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

All Female Family Vacation...

Well, I have finally recovered from my trip to Florida with the women in my family, 1 mom, 2 aunts and 2 cousins made the trip. Exactly WHEN did this sound like a good idea????? Oh yes, one of the cousins is pregnant. Well, we did enjoy some beverages and if you can't tell, this little picture is of a monkey - a monkey that hangs on the side of your drinks, one of my aunts brought them along for the festivity and they became a joke about being the object of affection for the little geckos/lizards that were everywhere down there. Sick humor, yes, I am aware.

Let's just say, families feel free to be themselves, the good, the bad, and the ugly with each other. We had lots of laughs, but bad moods were evident and feelings were hurt at times, I guess that it just the way families are - or is it just mine?

At home now, D and Meesta have colds. The old house is hopefully going to be sold/close at the very end of October/beginning of November, seriously praying that it does.

D was officially commissioned into the United States Navy as an ensign on Friday, the first layer in the officer realm. The ceremony was short and sweet but very meaningful and truly signifies a new adventure for our family.

I have also been working on getting my application in for a PhD program and it is almost I am about to embark on something I have always wanted to complete.

The kids are doing well though, I am running too much and 1st grade is still kicking our behinds, but we are making it.

Be back soon!