30 April 2010

Morning rain

It was so nice this morning to wake up to light rain. After a night like last night, that's the best.

Like I'd said in the previous post, I was headed to a couchsurfing gathering for some sushi. So, I'm thinking this is some simple, normal, every day sushi. Boy was I wrong! Torey had made the sticky rice, and ordered a fish straight from Seattle (I forget what kind... I'll update this when I do!). He torched it so it was semi-cooked, then placed it on a ball of sticky rice, with fresh grated garlic and a piece of green onion, and finally topped it with just a little bit of ouzo sauce. Oh. My. Gosh. It was absolutely incredible! Mix that with the view from the highest point in Kansas City, and it was a great night!

But we were just getting started.

You see, we had a group of about 12 people, 3 of which were couchsurfers from England who are traveling across the US (jealous). We went out to Westport (a local area with lots of bars), waiting for 3 more couchsurfers from South Africa to join us. That got exciting! Once they bar had last call, we broke apart, and I headed back to Torey's house with the "Brits". More entertainment quickly ensued, followed by a giant tackle of Torey's roommate due to his irrational decision to go for a drive. I think he will prefer the giant welt on his head to the stupid decisions he would have made while behind the wheel... but he will also have a terrible headache! Wasn't how we thought the night would end... but it was definitely a blast.

(oh, and I met Torey's aunt, Samantha. Check out her website. She's incredible at what she does!)

Photos coming after I get my homework done and take my final...!


Two days of Kansas City

The weather is absolutely fabulous today! 80 degrees and party cloudy.

Oh, there is a ridiculous amount of wind right now!

Regardless, it's a beautiful day.

I don't have time to post much right now because I'm going to head out to another couchsurfing gathering, but I wanted to post two KC photos.

What I like about this first one is that while Kansas City is quickly growing and developing, the past is still sticking around. This sign is off of Shawnee Mission Parkway, and I can't help but notice it every time I drive past (which is just about every day). What I didn't know, however, was that the cleaners are still open! Had I noticed that before I walked away, I would have stepped in to chat... but, alas, I was en route to babysitting and didn't have the chance.

This next one is McGonigles. They have been around since 1951- and everyone says they have the best meat around! I was feeling like cooking fish (for the first time!!!) so I thought why not run over there and pick some Tilapia up. I'm not sure if they only do this on nice days, or every day, but they have had a grill going every time I've been there, and you can order sandwiches and such. There are also tables and chairs set up in the grass so you can enjoy the weather while you eat! 

Ok... I'm out! Going to go enjoy some homemade sushi...

28 April 2010

It used to take a bath

It used to take a very long bath, book, and glass of wine to calm me down if I was having a stressful day or week. But as I am sitting outside on a swing, I am realizing there is something else that is incredibly calming.

You see, it is an incredibly gorgeous spring day here in Kansas City. The birds are out, it's partly cloudy, and it's a comfortable 60 degrees. I am taking in the bright green of the trees and the grass, the vibrant colors of the flowers, and the sound of a neighbor mowing his lawn. The most peaceful part, though is Griffin.

Griffin is a 12 year old with Angelman Syndrome. He cannot speak or write, but he listens very well. With the weather finally getting warm, he has discovered how much he loves to be outside playing in a child's pool full of water buckets and usually rather dirty water. If he's lucky, I'll even put soap in there sometimes so he can make bubbles. He doesn't care about the temperature outside, or the temperature of the water. He just loves to be out there. Right now he is sitting in the corner of the backyard in the last patch of sun that remains. He looks so angelic and content. Just knowing he is happy makes me happy, and it's giving me a true sense of peace. 

Maybe I'm feeling good because I got in a (short) 30 minute bath before the kids got home. But I don't think we'll ever know... but it doesn't matter. I am feeling good.

So, my photo of the day (cell phone quality because I haven't gotten in the habit of always having my camera yet): Griffin.

27 April 2010

43 days...+ Chicago

The countdown has officially begun for my official departure to Moldova! Actually, this countdown is for the departure to a place within the United States where we will have 2 days to meet other PVC's (Peace Corps Volunteers) and do more paperwork and vaccinations. Yahoo?

Anyways, I have a few things to get done before departure. Starting today, I am going to take 1 new photo a day of things I love about Kansas City and post it. Also, every time I eat out, I want to make sure I eat somewhere I have not been before. I started yesterday with Pizzabella  last night with Matthew for some pizza and wine, followed by Jardine's for the last song of the night. Bad timing, but we got to stick around with the employees for the wind-down. It was great! They always have fantastic music, and one of their servers, Baby J, is just awesome. We always have a blast when we go. Ok, I'm already breaking my "new place" rule... but it's to listen to music, not to eat! That's different!

On a different note, I was supposed to be in Paris right now. Due to the volcano in Iceland I had to cancel my trip. I got an email that my flight was cancelled just hours before it was supposed to take off. I went ahead and took the connecting flight to Chicago because I'd never been there before, and I hoped the airports would open up shortly thereafter so I could make it! Unfortunately, it got worse, so even if I did make it there, I may not have been able to make it back. I returned to Kansas City after 4 full days in Chicago! It was great!

I saw many famous paintings at the Art Institute, from Henri Toulouse-Lautrec to Manet to Monet to Polluck. As I was walking through the museum I was able to identify the artists just by looking at the paintings because I had studied them when in Angers! Guess I did learn something while there... just kidding. I also toured Memorial Park and saw the infamous BEAN sculpture, went to the Aragon Hall to see a band, saw Navy Pier from far away, and saw the Wrigley Stadium. Check out the photos!

21 April 2010


A friend of mine is having difficulties with his new job, but he never ceases to amaze me at his optimism through all of it. I know my job in Moldova is going to be the "hardest job you'll ever love", and some things he is saying now is really going to help me in the future. He said:

"Optimism is all that's keeping me going right now" and "It's amazing how much you have inside of you"

While out of context, those seem a little...well, odd... but if you put them into perspective with the jobs, it does make sense (I promise!)

Goals today: Mail a bunch of paperwork, do two assignments for astronomy, and do one more assignment for TEFL. Once that's done, I'll update this thing! Look out for a FULL post!