Mother’s Day

Huggable, loveable P

This mother’s day, I’m celebrating it as a new mom to our 11 month old son. Long before our little “chickadee” was born however, I was P’s mom for 8 very short, but wonderful years.

Before P came home, my husband and I would excitedly go to Walmart to shop for P’s “nursery” – a comfy bed, a soft blanket, lots of toys… and more toys.

From the moment P came home, we cuddled with him often from the time he was a wee pup to the time he was an old man. He was never far from our arms.

I watched him blossom from a shy little puppy who shadowed us everywhere at the dog park to a confident young man who later ran off to explore his world as soon as his paws were out of the car.

He loved life and its many joys.

He was the joy of my life.

Although he got older and grayer each year, he remained my baby boy always.

He was my first child. And I was lucky enough to be his mom.

So this mother’s day, I wanted to extend the celebration to everyone and anyone who’s cared for another being like their own child. Mother’s day is a celebration of love in whichever form you find it.

Thank you P for letting me be your mom. I miss you little one, and will love you always.

Holding P's paw

Sometimes it’s good to get lost

A Hidden Gem
A Hidden Gem
Chabot Regional Park
Chabot Regional Park
Ickey: Oh no, we're lost again, aren't we?
Ickey: Oh no, we’re lost again, aren’t we?
Beanpole: Hey, getting lost is pretty fun!
Beanpole: Hey, getting lost is pretty fun!

I am admittedly not the best driver, and constantly find myself getting lost. I found out today that it is indeed possible to get lost while being armed with both printed directions and a navigation system.

While intending to take Ickey on a relaxing evening hike at the Redwoods Regional Park, I somehow took a wrong turn somewhere and ended up on one of those dreaded stretches of winding road that go on and on without any opportunity to make a U-turn. I felt myself getting more anxious the farther I drove along this road that led to who knew where. Finally, I spot a small outlet on the side of the road that I pull into. It turns out that it is a parking space to a lesser known entrance to the Chabot Regional Park.

Ickey and I jump out of the car, and go off exploring. To our delight, we discover lovely wild flowers and abundant greenery shaded among a canopy of tall, tall trees. The place feels even more special because we have it all to ourselves. We can hear a small stream running along the path, and feel patches of sunshine through the thicket of trees. After a stressful week, it feels like a breath of paradise.

If we hadn’t gotten lost (noticed how I wrote “we” as if Ickey was driving too), we’d never have found this special place.

Sometimes it takes getting lost to uncover unexpected treasures.

Another day in paradise

Each week, Ickey and Michelle will be sharing their adventures as they explore the vast array of natural wonders in their new hometown – the Bay Area.

Where there is grass, you will find them peeing on it.

Where there are open fields, you will find them running free.

Where there are parks, you will find them relaxing on the benches.

Where there is adventure to be had, you will find Ickey and Michelle.

Chillin' in Bay Farm Island
Chillin’ in Bay Farm Island

House Hunting

Ten years ago, Beanpole and I packed all of our worldly possessions, which fitted comfortably in our Honda Civic, and drove to Las Vegas, Nevada. We had neither family nor jobs in Las Vegas. But we both dreamt of owning a home with a yard where we would raise a Golden Retriever who we were going to name P-.

We are back in the bay area and it’s time to start looking for a new place to live.

Swing Set
Swing Set

We both want to live in a safe neighborhood with a nice playground where our son can play on the swings. Check.

Walking Path
Walking Path

We also wanted to live in a place that had double tree-lined walking paths so we could walk Ickey and Michelle. The walkway also has to be wide enough so if Michelle have mobility issues in the future, we can use our wagon. Check.

View of the Lake
View of the Lake

After living in the desert for so long, we wanted to find a place with some water. It’s not a necessity but it’s a big plus.

Ickey and Michelle Posing by the Bridge
Ickey and Michelle Posing by the Bridge

Unfortunately, Beanpole and I both realized why we left ten years ago. Housing is super expensive. Thankfully, the last ten years have been pretty good to us. Hopefully we can afford something in this area.

Wish us luck.

Mona Lisa Smile

We tend to celebrate youth and beauty, and fear wrinkles and old age.

I’ve noticed however, that as Michelle gets older, her lashes get longer and more lovely, her face gets whiter and softer, and her frailness makes her more endearing. Her beauty grows, not diminishes with time.

If she had laugh lines, they would measure how joyful this life has been.

If she had gray hairs, they would mark all the worries and obstacles she’s had in life and overcame.

If she had wrinkles, they would trace the journey of her life with each line telling a different story.

There is a definite beauty in getting older if only we viewed aging with wiser eyes.

Here is our lovely girl, going on 13, in all her loveliness and giving her Mona Lisa smile. =)

Michelle's mona lisa smile
Michelle’s mona lisa smile