Friday, July 17, 2009

Satisfaction Friday

Another Friday is upon us and it feels wonderful! Outside my window the birds are gliding by, wind gently stroking the tips of the tree tops--it's calming, soothing...therapeutic...

My head is clear--no longer disarrayed with thoughts of academic deadlines, things to do before when.

Tonight I'm hanging out with some of my closest friends...gonna shoot the breeze with my old San Jose State folks and chit chatter over some beers. You gotta enjoy those times with those closest to you. You can't be too busy to hang out and I'm glad that I've always made time for "my people."

I'll be ending my Friday evening with my boy...catch up on this week's happenings, share some thoughts, enjoy each other's presence.

The simple things in life. I'm loving it!

Monday, March 2, 2009

I Gave Up Facebook for Lent

I gave up Facebook for lent, hence the multiple blog articles in such a short amount of time. Along with Facebook, Myspace, and Friendster, they are in sleep mode until Easter.

I waste so much of my time on these social networking websites, especially Facebook. My sister reminds me to play with her online pet or she tells me she bought a new piece of furniture for my pet, Kopi Kopi. I'll go check out friend's newly posted photos from their drunken weekend, new status entries about so and so stubbing their toe, how much they hate their job, and how they got dumped over the weekend. I like commenting on walls, checking out my hot friend with his shirt off, watching funny videos, posting new photos from an event the past weekend, and of course, IMing.

It's already a quarter past 11PM and I'm still working on a homework assignment due tomorrow! I thought, what the heck, just rid of Facebook for the next 40 days and nights. I did finish my homework early this past weekend and I had more free time this evening to work on other assignments and download a whole bunch of old school slow jams off of iTunes...."you everything..." That song is by Surface by the way, if you don't recognize the lyrics.

Good night!


Saturday, February 28, 2009

Why Am I Doing This to Myself

I don't know why I even do this to myself.

I just finished a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats cereal to wake myself up from my drooping eyes, suffering from 3 hours of studying. Okay, I wasn't studying the whole 3 hours. I did chat a bit, shot off a couple emails, did some laundry. But anyway, I came here to rant about why the hell am I here on a Saturday night at home when I should be out galavanting with the girls!

I'm taking three classes this quarter and I can't believe finals are the week after next week. Next quarter, my final quarter, I'm taking 4 classes...geez. WHY?

Sometimes I ask myself "Why did I go back to school?" I'm missing out on all the fun stuff I could be doing, hanging out with my buddies, partying, eating out! Yeah, whatever, Lorace. I was bored out of my mind during my company shutdown over the holidays. Yup. I went back to school willingly. It's for my own good to advance academically and for my career. I guess I always knew that.

I was chatting with Jeanette online this evening and we were talking about our approach to our 30's. In our 20's, we were still trying to figure things out. Now that I'm 29, I can say that while I was around 25, I thought I had everything figured out. I had a plan--finish my BS in Mechanical Engineering, get a good engineering job, get married, buy a house, start a family. I don't like deviating from my plans, so I tried my best to stay on that path, even when the other party wasn't pulling their weight. I don't know why I allowed that, but lesson learned, right?

Anyway, back to my plan. Jeanette was telling me that even back then I knew what I wanted and I went for it--finished my undergrad, found a job right away in Utah, found a good job at Lockheed Martin. I had to stop and think about it. I've always just seen it just as a sequence of events and not much about "knowing what I wanted."

I was months away from graduation and the only job offer I got was from ATK in Utah. I thought what a loser I am. I couldn't even find a job locally, directly correlated to a crappy GPA or lack of internship experience. So, I went off to Utah, and found a sea of cheap housing; more bang for your buck! My parents helped me invest in a house half the price it would have cost here in the Bay Area. There was no sense in renting there if I had a good down payment.

I started working on the solid rocket boosters for the Space Shuttle, assigned to the Final Assembly Work Center working on exit cone, Nozzle Severence System. I was bored out of my mind in Utah. I didn't have too many friends. I flew back home every month. I started taking classes for my MS, did a lot of landscaping and gardening, shoveling snow.

I'd say about a year later, I started looking for a job back home. During the fourth of July weekend while I was home visiting, I applied for an ordnance position with Lockheed Martin in Sunnyvale, just 20 minutes away from my parents house that definitely beats the one hour commute from my Utah house to ATK. The job requisition was very similar to what I was doing at ATK. I thought it was too good to be true!

A month later while I was at a Pyrotechnic Conference in Maryland, I received an email from Lockheed Martin's recruiting center saying they are interested in flying me out for an interview. Coincidently, my suitemate worked for the same group I was going to interview for. How weird.

So, I got the job and had to pack up and leave Utah. I found great renters to live in the Utah house and I had no problems with them while they were living there. I moved back home. I went back to my old halau and started dancing again, went back to school. Looking back, the only thing that didn't stay it's course was the guy part. I guess I was so use to everything else going so smoothly that the whole guy thing would eventully follow through.

I'm doing fine though. Dating here and there, just letting things flow. Life is nice. I have great parents, and a great set of friends, my support network. I'm learning everyday...=)


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I'm On a Mission

Usually when I have difficulty sleeping I have something on my mind. Right now, it's 11 minutes past 5AM and I'd say I woke up around 3:30AM from a really nice slumber. Last night, I came home around 10:30PM from Kat's place studying and went straight to bed. It was a good evening despite the cramming for midterms. I hung out with Kat and Auggie and updated them about my nice weekend.

When I woke up at 3:30 this morning, it felt more like I slept past my alarm clock. I guess I must have slept pretty damn good. I couldn't fall back to sleep, so I started to lay out my agenda and "strategizing" for the rest of the week at work and other activities.

I feel like, I'm on a mission! I'm going to attack this continuous improvement effort at work and get it done well! My manager gave me some really good advice on how to pursue it, so now it's a matter of follow through.

Aggressiveness is the theme. No room to be shy here.


Thursday, January 8, 2009

Wish You Can See Yourself on Replay?

I just finished taking videos of myself Tahitian dancing. When I replayed the videos, I'm like "Whoa, do I really dance like that?" Amongst all my blubber flapping around, I watched my fa'arapu (those round fast circle movements) as it jerked around. Ugh! I took more videos, watched it again; maybe the angle was funny. Ah! Same thing. I decided to watch the videos on my laptop, maybe I can see it better? Nope. I still sucked. Geez, do I need work! Good thing I watched myself because now I know I need to practice more frequently than those two hours on Saturday and Sunday.

Imagine doing a replay of yourself at a party enjoying yourself with friends. Perhaps enjoying yourself too much. How about watching a video of yourself in discussion with coworkers at work. Haha! Who's the bitch now?

Think about the person you are and want to be and how you look to other people. Is the person you want to be and the person that people see you as the same or completely different? Occasionally, ping that idea off of a close friend that will be honest with you. Maybe she can provide you with some good feedback that you can reflect on.

I'm not saying that you should be concerned about what people think of you. First start with #1, which is you and assess who you are as a person and what kind of person you want to be. As long as you are happy with the person you are looking at in the mirror every morning, then it's all good.

I see myself as a compassionate person, thoughtful of others, and receptive, hardworking and loyal. I am also impatient, loud, with attitude. I've toned it down over the years and I'm learning to relax and breathe during stressful periods.

But just ask yourself, "Who am I? Am I that person I want to be?" If not, then do something to bring that person back.

~ Lorace

Monday, January 5, 2009

Recovering From a Case of "The Mondays." Back to Work After the Holidays

You having a case of the Mondays? How about coming down with the post-holiday, going back to work blues? I've been infected too and I'm recovering in my nice warm bed under my down blanket, watching old Beyonce and Destiny's Child music videos.

Last night, I went to bed at 10PM. I laid there for about an hour before I finally fell asleep. It's really hard going to sleep so early after so many days of sleeping around 2AM and waking up nearly to lunch time. Dayum, did that feel good ((sigh)).

This morning, my alarm went off at 4:35AM. Snoozed it. I finally got up, showered, got dressed, and prettied my face. I wrapped my new $5 pea green scarf from the Filipino market and jumped into my car to head to work.

Cold. And that was the theme for the day, even in the office. My winter coat and scarf stayed on the whole day except for when I had to tinkle (don't want my scarf falling in the toilet).

What a way to start off a Monday, after the holidays, getting in to work at 6AM, freezing my ass off in a perfectly good office building used to house some of the best engineers in the Bay Area. Their own HVAC system don't even work!

It was hard trying to write a weekly input on activities from 3 weeks ago, in the cold, on a Monday after the holidays, with puke pea green fuzz collecting all over my dress pants and on to the floor, wishing I was snuggling in my cozy warm bed, watching free, melodramatic Korean movies on, tightly clutching my snot ridden tissues. ((sigh))

Okay, back to reality...

~ Lorace

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year's from WNT!

Can you believe it? Another year has gone by! I'd have to say that 2008 was very busy, stressful, filled with both laughter and tears. Here's my "executive summary" of this year's happenings...

Happy 2008!
January, I rang in the new year with Kat and Israel, celebrating at The Loft in downtown San Jose. We were so indecisive that time, not settling on NYE plans, so we ended up there since there was no cover.

New Year's Day, I drove up to Watsonville to visit my friend Aya and her family at their Japanese cucumber farm and had some really good home cooked Japanese them beans, Aya!

Partying, Travel, and Food!

February had a girls night out at Wild 94.9 Women's Only Event and learned how to bet on horses in Vegas.

Of course we checked out all the good eye candy at the Women's Only thing, but then realized the frustration with all these little 21 year olds pushing and shoving to get closer to the stage just to try to win some free stuff. GHETTO! That's why I don't go clubbing much.

In Vegas, Randall, Leong and I ate lots at the Bellagio and the Wynn. Lost some pounds walking around with these two. Randall and I tried out that roller coaster at New York, New York. Leong chickened out, but he did teach us how to bet on horses. No luck for me there. I also lost a lot of sleep listening to their snoring ensemble.

In March, me and the girls joined Jeanette's friends at Baker's Beach for a picnic. This beach is notorious for naked sun bathers and we glimpsed one guy in his birthday suit...((shiver)), but we did have fun playing with the sand and enjoying the sun and the waves.

April, we visited our old roomie, Enid in LA! We did a lot of touristy stuff, acting like picture whores taking tons of silly photos of ourselves. We caught a broadway show, Wicked! It was really good, I even cried at some points. We also spent some time at Enid's museum, The Getty Villa and we chowed down on some good Korean BBQ!

Modeling with Poe 'Ori 'Ori Pareo

In April, I had my first experience modeling with a professional photographer for my friend's pareo business, Poe 'Ori 'Ori Pareo, along with a couple of my hula sisters. This event really got me into the wonders of makeup, and celebrating being a woman.

Ringing in My Last Year in my 20's!

In June, I celebrated my 29th birthday with horse back riding at Garrod Farms in Saratoga. Every year for my birthday, I try to do something different and active. Last year was rock climbing and this year it was great being in the outdoors going horse back riding for the first time! The evening was a different story.

Sweat and Tears

July, I competed in my first big Tahitian dancing solo and group competition at San Jose Tahiti Fete with my dance troupe, Kawailehua. Solos took place at the Double Tree Hotel near the airport. I couldn't believe that I had been practicing all year for just this two minute solo. It went well. I didn't make it to finals, but it was a great experience being up there and freestyle dancing. I met some really cool people while waiting in line for my category.

Group competition took place at the Event Center at SJSU. With Kawailehua, it was an amazing journey leading up to this event from August 2007 with conditioning and tryouts, and sacrificing all my Sundays for these five hour practices perfecting our basic dance movements, memorizing the routine and positioning, learning how to dance from the heart and not purely focusing on the technical dance's still a work in progress. Kawailehua won 3rd place in O'tea, a first time for us!

Amongst all the commotion preparing for a whole year for this event, two days before competition, my family received word from the Philippines that my grandmother passed away. She came here to the states when I was little to take care of us. She was a tough lady, suffering from alzheimers in her last years.

It was a challenge mentally to focus on preparations for competition and packing for the trip back to the Philippines. In between work and last minute practices, the whole family coordinated getting the tickets setup, shopping, and filling up the balikbayan boxes with pasalubong (gifts) for the relatives.

We scheduled a late night flight out of SFO for the PI for the same day as group competition (10PM). My group was scheduled to perform at 2PM, so I thought that would be ample time to run home and head off to the airport. We told the relatives back home to extend the viewing and wait for us to arrive for the funeral.

The group competition line up was behind schedule an excrutiating six hours! 2PM came and went, along with 3, 4, 5, 6, 7PM! I kept my cool during those hours, but during that time, I was not a happy camper and it was very difficult to smile during the last few run throughs of the routine. The July heat didn't help either. I prayed to my grandma that I'd make the flight to see her and say good-bye.

We made it to the competition dance floor at 8PM on the dot. The whole routine was one hour. I was in a zone. Just for this one hour I would focus on the group and our performance. In between routines I called my mom and told her that it's almost done. She was screaming at me, "You better leave now or you're going to miss the funeral!!!" I was screaming at her, "I can't leave now! Just stop it, get Nene on the phone!" I calmed down and came to terms with missing the flight and told my sister that it's okay if I missed the funeral because I was able to see grandma a couple years ago before she passed.

Thank you, Lord for The Girls (Jeanette, Aya, Harms, Stacers). They were the only ones who came to support me at this important event and they are the ones that rushed my butt to SFO! After leaving the competition dance floor and waving good-bye to the judges, I rushed to gather my costumes, ran through downtown San Jose in my coconut bra with the girls to jump in Jeanette's car and head off to the airport. Jeanette made it to SFO in a record 30 minutes while I was in the back seat taking my cocos off and changing into plain clothes (not sure how the cocos would have looked in the security scanner).

My sister's boyfriend, Amir, was waiting for me at the gate with my passport and boarding pass. I still can't believe how my family checked me in earlier without me being present. I rushed through security and greeted my mom and sister with a deep breath and a smile, "I'm finally here." Our flight was delayed one hour anyway, wooo.

We were in the Philippines for 9 days, so we tried to make a vacation out of it too.
Some Relaxation, Work, and School

August was relaxing times. Kawailehua was already making preparations for next year's competition. I spoke to my Kumu about not doing group competition. I was already burnt out and I wanted to focus on finishing up my Master's degree and continue doing solo competitions. Work was always busy with reviews and travel. I finally got my promotion! And I competed at Kawailehua's annual Manahere solo dancing competition. I didn't place, but my dancing is improving.

Now tonight, I'm going to celebrate the forthcoming year with good friends and music. It's been an amazing year spending time with you all. Thank you! And let's look forward to what 2009 has in store for us!