Monday, December 31, 2007

Really, is that what is holding you back?

I mean really. Wendy, can you think of a better LAME ASS excuse for not writing your novel? How many more hints must be dropped before you write?

2 of my classmates from highschool have followed their creative dreams.

2008 is your year.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

All things Chinese....

The things you see in China. Hmmm...let's just keep building up the road. No worries if we build completely over the top of the fire hydrant. Love the resolve. Let's just put a sand pit in front of the hose fitting. The fireman can dig it out if there is a need to use the hydrant.

Got Reyde some "training chopsticks." Started practicing with potato chips when I got home on Saturday. Headed out to dinner with family at Bucca di Beppo's Italian that evening. Reyde wanted to bring his new sticks to practice. I had to tell him that we don't use our chopsticks at Italian. We can practice at home, at the Vietnamese Pho Noodle restaurants and of course Chinese.....


My bad. Oh so bad. Took my camera to China and found a ton of photos I haven't saved nor printed.

Went to Seattle a couple different times. Always take my camera. Got some good "touristy" shots of Reyde.

And gotta love the one on the bottom. Woops. Shot too wide and you can see how I got the photo of Reyde in the orange tube.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

A new level to friendship...

Got a friend who's been through hell and is coming out of the coals. We have little contact but I check her blog regularly to see if she's posted. It's a whole new side of friendship, to just check in anonymously. Love the technology age.

Quite the writer she is....I love this excerpt. So had to copy and paste. Enjoy. Raise your cup to the heavens, close your eyes, and bring life to those hopes, dreams, and aspirations.

....I also like this quote from John Nash she uses in her book. John Nash is the main character in the movie Beautiful Mind. Later in his life he was asked if he still saw the people who were not there. His reply, "See them? Oh yes, I see them, but I choose not to acknowledge them. Because like all of our dreams and all of our nightmares, you have to feed them for them to live."

So here's to feeding our dreams and starving our nightmares. Stilling the voices who keep us from being who we were created to be. And celebrating the voices which us lead us to the place where our dreams come true.

Friday, October 26, 2007

I want my hair like this...

Reyde clasps his hands together on the top of his head.

"Go ask your Dad," I tell him. I'm okay with it, but let's see what James say.

"Are you sure?"

"Yeah, like this," Reyde again puts his hands together over his head.

"Wendy, if that's what he wants..." (Notice a re-occurring theme here?)

I thought long nose hairs were just for old men!

From time to time I'll stop in to Mom's shop and she'll be trimming an older man's hair. When finished, she'll buzz the neck line, and trim up long hair growing out of their ears and nose.

NEVER THOUGHT about long nose hairs (why is the plural hairs instead of hi?) and me.

So we went to the beach last weekend with Amy and Katie. Amy and I are in the bathroom and we revert back to the teenage years vying for mirror space.

"Let me get closer. Time to check out the pimple situation." I say to Amy as I shoulder my way into the vanity area.

"Yeah, the lighting is really good at the beach for that."

Raising my chin, I achieve the optimum angle for analysis, only to find I have long dark brown nose hairs inching there way past the flesh of my nose. I have scissors and home to take care of this? I'M GETTING OLD.

As we drove home on Sunday afternoon, I am still bothered by this fact. Then I chuckle, remembering when I found my tear ducts in highschool.

Sitting in the cafeteria with a little lipstick mirror, I find an enormous black head in the corner of my eye. I spent the entire lunch period trying to get rid of it. I spent all afternoon worrying it away. My eye was so red. Mom got home and I showed her.

"Wendy, that's your tear duct."

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Prime Numbers

As most of you know, I am quick to point out prime numbers in daily life. More than anything, I like to tell people, "you're in your PRIME," when their age is a prime number.

So hat's off to my sissy la-la (AKA Amy,) for finding this excerpt for me. I can't wait to read the book.

Excerpt from The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. Mr. Haddon used to work with autistic young people and the main character of this novel is a 15 year old boy with autism name John Francis Boone. Chapter 19 is about prime numbers.
"Chapters in books are usually given the cardinal numbers 1,2,3,4,5,6 and so on But I have decided to give my chapters prime numbers 2, 3, 5, 7, 11, 13 and so on because I like prime numbers.

This is how you work out what prime numbers are. First you write down all the positive whole number in the world. Then take away all the numbers that are multiple of 2. Then you take away all the number that are multiples of 3. Then you take away all the that are multiples of 4 and 5 and 6 and 7 and so on. The numbers that are left are the prime numbers.

The rule for working out prime numbers is really simple, but no one has ever worked out a simple formula for telling you whether a very big number is a prime number or what the next one will be. If a number is really, really big, it can take a computer years to work out whether it is a prime number.

Prime numbers are useful for writing codes and in America they are classed as Military Material and if you find one over 100 digits long you have to tell the CIA and they buy it off you for $10, 000. But it would not be a very good way of making a living.

Prime numbers are what is left when you have taken all the patterns away. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them."

Saturday, October 13, 2007

What Reyde Wants, Reyde Gets...

James asked Reyde in February what color he wanted to paint his So while most Moms would steer a young child to a more appealing color on the paint swatch...not James.

"It's what he wanted Wendy."

Friday, September 14, 2007

Those Special "Firsts" in a Child's Life

I wonder what Reyde will think when he is a grown man, and we go through those special "first" moments in life...I wrote down the date of his first ice cream headache...and now this...his first experience with a whoopy cushion. Oh the adventure of being my offspring.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Now that was impulsive

Are you kidding me? Nope. Had an impulsive moment and went with it. It all started with Uncle Rex offering up, yet another, 70s Chevy truck. I stomped my foot and said, "the next vehicle that comes onto our property is going to be a sports car for me!"

Had no idea the Pontiac Solstice was in existence until we drove to the Mazda dealership to test drive a Miata. James casually mentions as we drive by it, "What about that one?" I figured it was out of my price range. (When did I acquire a price range?)

What more can I say? VROOM VROOM.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Yes, what they say is true...about...

20 year highschool class reunions.

Stand up comedians crack jokes about walking up to people and staring at their chests before talking to them. Yup, I did it and people did it to me. Ugh.

Cliques still around. Yup.

Odd memories come flashing back? Oh yeah. And knowing that I probably wouldn't see these people again, I shared the memories with them.

James and I went to my 20 year class reunion last night. We ran late and arrived after dinner had been served. More people showed up than expected and we dined standing up. $90 buffet of pasta with red or white sauce, a roast beef station, salad, and appetizer veggies. Had I known we could just show up and drink, I would definitely have done that.

Words can't describe what I witnessed. 16 Candles Revisited.

The girls who didn't fit in still didn't fit in and painfully stood out in the crowd.

We stood around and stared much longer than anyone should stare at one another attempting to figure out who you are/were. And then if you couldn't figure it out, you walk up really close to see the name tag and the picture from 1987. Reunion etiquette (never spoken mind you,) is such that if you realize you don't know this person you are intimately acquiring close up knowledge of their chest with, you simply walk away. Or you can start a conversation and talk about nothing until you move on to the next person. But know that you have to immediately begin looking for that next person if you start the conversation.

So while I am glad I went because I reconnected with a guy that I was very curious about, I tend to think I won't attend again. The $2000 question I have now is if I fly across the world to attend a reunion if it gets organized in Australia or do I pass?

Highlights of the evening?
  • Seeing Billy who I went to school with since kindergarten. I say hello to him and he goes to his wife, "this is the girl I was telling you about, who had a ghost...SEYMOUR DELPHI DARIUM!" I can't recall Billy being at our house. Makes you wonder what other memories people have of you that you haven't a clue about.
  • Telling another guy that I was so afraid of dropping one of my really long fingernails for fear that he'd make a voodoo doll with it. His wife laughed. He commented that he probably did make voodoo dolls. And when James and I excused ourselves from the table, he said "now don't leave any of you here." I wiped the table. Hopefully no hair or saliva remained behind.
  • Seeing Ronnie from kindergarten as well. Wow, 4 children and 20 years of marriage.
  • Seeing Kim and reminiscing about 2nd grade and showing her how to use the water fountain. Oh, and telling James that this was the sleepover that I had the panic attack at and left at 6pm instead of 6am. Kim remembered that.
  • Catching up with Kevin. The only classmate that I gave my business card to. I flew out of the office on Friday without grabbing more. I told him that I only had one and he was the one I wanted to give it to. James and I will have he and his wife over for dinner. So while the event was not as I had hoped it would be, I am thankful to have reconnected with Kevin. An intelligent, nice guy, who genuinely seemed interested.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Those silly directions on product packaging...

It went something like this...

"Wendy, are you afraid of spiders?" And before I really have a chance to answer, "Because there is a spider in the lunchroom and it's holding my popcorn hostage!"

So Amber and I walk into the lunchroom. We are temporarily distracted by the smell of burning popcorn. I open the microwave door and a poof of yellow smoke billows out of the door.

"OH MY GOD. It's on fire!"

I replied to Amber, "No, I don't think so, but maybe you should get the fire extinguisher," and I close the door of the microwave to contain the yellow smoke.

Amber runs back in the lunchroom with the extinguisher and Michelle, our safety committee person.

"YOU cannot use that extinguisher, you haven't been trained." Michelle emphatically states.

I walk past the spider, who caused the incident, get a paper cup and TRAP him!

We are fanning the sprinkler heads to make sure they don't go off. Hmmm. I decide we must take the popcorn out of the building to get it doused with water and get the smell removed.

So I open the door again. The yellow smoke is gone. Walking gingerly through the warehouse I begin to giggle. The popcorn producers do say to stand by the microwave, do not leave popcorn unattended.

I'd tend to agree.

I douse the popcorn with water, leave it out on the loading dock and head back to the lunch room.

Grabbing a pseudo fan, a laminated warning card about the lunchroom being for AMMEX employees, I slip it under the cup, and take the criminal outside.

I fling him with gusto out into the shrubbery.

"Oh, Wendy, you are so nice."

"There's nothing nice about it. I just don't like to hear the spider body go CRUNCH when you step on them."

Okay, so let's resume working. But alas, I have my camera. So I head back out to the loading dock to take a picture of...."WHEN POPCORN GOES BAD...."

While it looks like black beans on corn tortilla's popcorn.

"I feel like calling the company, I am so upset right now." Amber rambles on in the sales pit.

"Uh, calling them because you didn't follow their directions about not leaving popcorn unattend?"

"But there was a spider!"

"Yes, you should tell them to address aracniphobia (or however you spell it, I'm gonna be late for work, I'm not spell checking) on their packaging for sure."

Today's lunch is all raw foods, or ones that don't need re-heating.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Pics from the weekend

Can you believe it? I finally sit down to upload my photos onto Flickr and I get the message, "Flickr is having a massage." Huh? From 8-10pm tonight, Flickr is down for updates.

So here's a snapshot of some of the fun in Westport Washington. COLD COLD COLD. It was sooo cooooold, as Vanessa in the Philippines said, "your mouth is smoking." Uhhh, no we say that you can see your breath! Very cold and windy and rainy. The typical Westport Memorial Day Weekend.

Highlight of the event? Would have to be all the grilling we did. Thanks James!

My attempt at being artsy fartsy with the marina in the background and crab pot in front.
Wesport harbor
Trying to capture a picture of Turbo jumping in the air.
So James thought Reyde would enjoy sleeping in the tent. Hmmm, looks like Nitro and Turbo enjoyed it more.
Reyde on his battery powered ATV. So cool.
Helping Dad clean up the trailor.
Gotta take a picture of look at that an ORANGE truck.
Seagulls for Mom.
"Dad drive your tractor and we'll be a train!"

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

How'd I miss posting this?

Cleaning up my email'd I forget to post this? Conversations on the floor from February 23, 2007

We are having some fun at work. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I’m going to miss working in the environment in the Philippines. We all have fun, the individuals support and encourage other’s success, and yet the competitive atmosphere still exists. The camaraderie is something else.

Over the last couple weeks, we’ve been joking around about the differences in Filipino and American pronunciation. The banter back and forth yesterday left us all “busting a gut.” The whole floor laughed so hard we had to take a minute to compose ourselves.

I know it’s a “you had to be there moment,” but nonetheless it went something like this.

“We should have a crazy hat day here. What do you think Drew,” Loree says. Drew is ignoring her and she says to the team, “He’s ignoring me.”

“I’ll wear my purple tutu,” comments Ryan.

“He didn’t just say purple tutu did he,” I ask. So I pipe up over our half cube walls, “I double dog dare your Ryan to wear your purple tutu to work. I’ll bring my camera and put your picture on my blog.”

The giggling on the floor starts up. Kristian sits to my right, a very quiet guy who I love to joke around with. It’s so hard to get him to lose his professional composure. So I ask, “Kristian, what color is your tutu?”

Loree pipes up, “It’s PHINK!” (Yes, PHINK, not PINK. Filipinos have a hard time pronouncing the Puh sound in pink.)

And at that point we are all laughing so hard we can’t help it.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Weekend at the Beach....not Boracay

The guys look a little sad that I left Manila...

And these boys look a little glad that I am back in Seattle...

Went to Westport Washington this weekend. We awoke on Saturday morning and let Reyde know that we were headed to the beach. He asked if we could go to Boracay.'s not in the cards this weekend, we'll just have to settle for Westport.

A BALMY 4 DEGREES CELSIUS. Ouch. I get an email from Fred tonight that it's cooking at 35C in Manila. (Translates to 45 and 95 fahrenheit.)

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The Flamingo Has Landed

Back in the USA....quite the adventure has ended. I suppose a better way to phrase this is an eventful chapter has ended and a new one begun.

Got home from the Philippines on Tuesday morning. A wee bit tired but stayed a awake most of the day.

James made dinner. TACOS. WOO WOO. Brought me back to the Philippines when I asked for lettuce to stuff in my taco and he says, "oh I forgot to buy that at the store." Translation, "I know it's on the menu, but sorry it's not available."

I made up my own to Philangish word. (Philipino and English.) QUESAMADA. James couldn't remember what Reyde likes to eat. I thought I could remember. I said quesamada. A combo of quesadilla and ensaymada. WOOPS.

And probably the funniest thing happened when James was browning the hamburger for the taco meat. I was cleaning off the counter to make space for cooking. I put a bunch of bills and paperwork and keys and wallet and glasses and whatever else spilled out from my purse when I came home.

I am in the living room with Reyde and he asks me what I did with the taco seasoning.


Belly laugh. "Yeah right Wendy, you put it in your purse." Woops.

Monday, March 19, 2007

The Great Wall of China

Mom and I on the Great Wall of China. This part was steep. With all the tripping I've done in Manila I had a wee bit of anxiety going down this part of the Wall.

So may not have any more posts. I've got over 1000 photos to put into albums so we can all go on my trip over and over and over again. And I'll probably be paying for extra luggage. Didn't think about how heavy photos would be. Oh Well.

Nanny K in China

Hello all. I know been too long but I have so much to do before I leave that I haven't spent time with my blog. After Baguio, Loree, Keyo and I went to Puerto Galera and then last weekend, (March 10th) I stayed home for some much needed sleep.

Mom arrived on Monday night and we headed to Beijing on Thursday. OMG it was SOOO COOOOOLDDDD. What am I gonna do in Seattle? It was a balmy 45 degrees Fahrenheit. I guess I am acclimated to 90 degrees in Manila.

So here are a couple quick photos from China. Got a lot to wrap up and pack during this next 7 days. Then back to Seattle. Can't wait to see my boys.

Mom with her two best Chinese friends.
Noodles anyone?
I can take just as big of a bite as my Mom.
In the Forbidden City. The architecture is just overwhelming.
See I was SOOO COOOLLLLLDDD. This photo was taken at the Summer Palace. Man made lake to enjoy in the summer. Reminded me of Seattle and got a bit homesick. Ready to come home to my family, friends, dogs, and stuff.

I will so miss the people in the office at AMMEX I-Support. I keep telling them that I'll just be at a different extension. But I know it's not going to be the same. For me or them.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Back from Baguio

Another quick out of the conungle trip. 52 hours in all. Went to Baguio, the summer capitol of the Philippines. I'll have a much longer entry later, must go take a nap before heading into work tonight. There were so many funny moments...I hope to capture them all in writing.

Went to the parade. How funny was that! I have maybe 2 clear pictures of floats. It seems the thing to do in the Philippines is to run up to the float and get your picture taken with it. So while this is the not most flattering picture of dear Wendy....I'm doing as the natives do...

We headed to the mall after the parade, and look here's a chicken....

And we laughed our heads off at this sign....

Loree our newest Ifugao princess...

Now how's this for hospitality? A welcome sign to the toilet!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Basketball anyone?

Basketball is the game in the Philippines. The guys play quite often. First time for me to check out the action.

They ran fast in the beginning. Got a bit slower as the play ensued. I'd have slowed down too; playing on a court in the basement parking garage of the Makati Stock Exchange. Nothing like breathing in stale hot air with exhaust fumes every so often.

So here's the still photos:

So the first movie is the guys playing basketball.

And the second is the spectators, then Markie Mark and then Mandrake. Those two always pose.

There's another one to come but I am too tired to wait. I'm headed to bed.

Okay, so I waited. Here's the 3rd one.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Pressure is off Reyde...

to carry on the Grantham family name. Chris and Miranda had a baby boy on Tuesday February 20th.

Here's the link to their blog.

Joy's gonna love this next sentence....


I must be tired. It's 1.20pm. I'm going to bed.

Monday, February 19, 2007

My Boys Have Gone Home

It’s been 5 days since I put James and Reyde on the airplane to go back to Seattle. Day 1 passed with the help of Tylenol PM. Slept from 8am to 4.30pm. With that much sleep I was quite productive at work. Still at the back of my mind I worried until I called James’s USA cell phone and heard his very tired voice. Day 2 passed with the help of “Rexy Sexy.” Took a nap, went to Rexy the hair dresser and had my hair colored, foiled and cut. Went to work a bit tired but with incredible hair. Day 3 (Saturday) I took a nap and set the alarm to go to the gym. Very hard to wake up, snoozed for a half hour before I dragged myself out of bed. Got back from the gym about 1.30 and promptly went up to the pool and laid out in the sun. AAAAHHHHH I love the sun. The heat is kicking back up, it’s gonna be killer here in April and May. Went shopping with Loree and met up with Rico and his girlfriend at Greenbelt. At 9.30pm I had to crash. Day 4 started at the gym, then off on an adventure to Santa Rosa in Laguna for Rico’s birthday. It was so nice to be in a neighborhood and not in the conungle (my new word- concrete and jungle combined.)

So while I’ve kept myself busy, I really miss my boys. And I am in the countdown to departure. 35 days to be as effective as I can with training, working with “team Wendy,” seeing as much as I can of this beautiful country that I have come to love, with feelings conflicting of the sadness of leaving such great people to work with and happiness in really looking forward to seeing my boys, my dogs, and getting on with life in the USA.

I look at my Reyde and James pictures. I watch my Reyde videos. And put my game face on at work .
(post script…just got off the phone with James and Reyde. Reyde talked about getting on the airplane, and going to the airport, and going to Boracay. James tells me that he talks about going back to Valero to most people he sees. Perhaps Reyde will remember more than just Starbucks and chocolate donuts, elevators, taxis and asking me “What’s that smell?”