Sunday, August 25, 2013

One Year Ago Today

i believe we should all periodically face an enormous fear.  i first did this when i moved to san francisco without a plan or a friend.  i faced fear when i became separated from dannon deep in an unpatrolled section of the grand canyon with no water.  i faced a different, but equally great fear the day of my wedding.  but for several years i hadn't faced any fears at all.  in fact, i took great care to avoid my fears completely.  this was no way to live.  in fact, it wasn't really living at all.  

then came my 30th birthday.  the week before i had planned several different trips wherein i would get in my car and just drive.  each trip sounded exciting and liberating, but still not quite right.  eventually i realized these trips had more to do with running away than embracing the things in life which i feared.  two days before my birthday i literally woke myself up in the middle of the night with one thought: skydiving!  the next day i booked a non-refundable ticket without giving it much thought.  i knew i could easily talk myself out of it if i thought about it.  i also knew we were far too poor to waste the money i put down.  i was locked in.  that was that.  

the morning of my birthday i informed dannon that i would be skydiving later that afternoon and asked if he would like to join me.  of course he did!  we hopped in the car and giggled with nervous anticipation.  my fingers were tingly and i continued to avoid my thoughts as i spent 40 minutes signing document after document stating that i just might die that day.  yikes.  

as we waited for our turn to go through the training we sat and watched as people all over the world, people of all different levels of professional daredevilism, prepared for their jumps.  they were hippies, outdoorsy mountain people - they were our people.  suddenly we felt very calm.  the fear disappeared completely and i knew this was something i was going to absolutely love.  

and so, exactly one year ago today, i jumped.

and now, whenever i face a fear, i remind myself that i fell from 2 miles above
the earth at 120mph...  i can handle anything.

ps - it really was an unbelievably incredible experience.  i highly recommend it to everyone!  and yes, it's actually quite safe - injuries occur to experts who are attempting very dangerous tricks, not newbies jumping with trained professionals.  so... do it!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013


it's hard to believe that it's almost my birthday again.  this past year has absolutely flown by.  

this year, my birthday wish list includes:
+ a long backpacking trip through Iceland
+ entrance into my top PhD program
+ a cute cabin in the woods of Colorado
+ a month sailing on a tall ship like my friend maranatha did
+ a sea kayaking trip around the channel islands

okay, so my realistic wish list includes eye glasses, a trip to the dentist, new break pads for the car and money to take the GRE.  not nearly as fun as my "no limitations" list above, but i guess i'm a real grown-up now.

{this is what happens when i sigh after thinking about the inner struggle between adult responsibilities and youthful free-spiritedness. she always knows how to make me feel better.}

Friday, August 9, 2013


it's happening again.
extreme wanderlust.
an insatiable craving for nature, the woods, rivers, mountains.
simplicity, clean air - dirt, not dust.
a place to explore and explore, never coming to the end.

{photo from the noisy plume, a great blog whenever i need to live vicariously through a fellow nature girl.}

i love the bustling inner city life, but i'm finding it difficult to love LA.  San Francisco, Portland,
Denver - these are cities which are easy to love when you are the child of the woods.  i'm tired of driving so much, of feeling trapped 6 suburbs deep between myself and wildnerness country.  i'm tired of seeing grand wealth put into the most insignificant things.  i'm really sick of hot, dry dust.  i am not the type to settle down.  my limit is 3-5 years in one place, then i'm ready to pack up and leave, to go somewhere, anywhere, so long as it's different. 

but i am in LA for a while longer.  it's not just up to me anymore.  i married a man who came with a band, daily practices, monthly concerts.  i'm thrilled he gets to be a real musician, not just a musician by hobby.  so i face my wanderlust with gentleness, like one would with a wild animal that must be caged for its own good.  i try to have patience, to focus on that which i do love here - my tiny home, my friends, my daily hikes with maisy - and i let myself dream of the future possibilities, the time when i will get to put my finger on a map and head out.  i guess this is growing up.

Sunday, July 28, 2013



i recently discovered the website calm.  they offer free 2 min, 10 min or 20 min guided 
meditations, plus you get to choose one of about a dozen nature scenes.  
they even have an app for that so you can feel the calm wherever.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The C-Word

lately i've been thinking a lot about conflict {yes that c-word}.  i can't count how many times i've told people "conflict is not bad, it's simply a call to creativity."  i was taught that in grad school by my favorite hippy psychology professor, and i felt so proud of myself every single time i said it.  "oh kim, you are dishing out such wise advice!"  i truly believed the words that were coming out of my mouth... that is, until i had to apply it to my own life.  i was careful never to say this wise advice to myself, even though i whole-heartedly thought it was true.  why?  because conflict is not just a call to creativity.  if that were all, i would be fine with it.  i love to be creative!  but conflict is also a call to
change {oy, there's another c-word for you}.


the other day i was journaling about a quote i had read by *donald miller.  the quote was:

The most crippling belief a person can have is life was supposed 
to be easy.  Can you imagine how much more painful life would be 
if you thought life was hard because you were doing something 
wrong?  Conflict isn’t what detracts from our well-being. 
 Conflict is great.  What detracts from our well-being is the 
thought we weren’t supposed to be experiencing conflict in the 
first place. ... Life is supposed to be meaningful and we 
can't gain a sense of meaning without conflict.

as i was writing about how wise and truthful i found this statement, putting it to memory so i could add it to my arsenal of great therapy speech, i was interrupted by conflict - a lot of conflict.  the dog, the cat, the husband, each brought forth conflict to my peaceful existence within the span of 2 short minutes as i was writing about how conflict brings meaning.  fuck.  i was furious, not because of the specific conflict going on around me, but because i suddenly had the responsibility to face that conflict in a new way.  i could no longer face it with those dear old friends Avoidance and Blame.  i knew those were unhealthy and unproductive ways of dealing with conflict, but i still longed for them them because they were familiar and comfortable.  we humans are funny aren't we?  we choose the unhealthy over that which we know will make us happier in a desperate attempt to avoid any form of change.  i know i do. 

so i guess the points i'm trying to make are these:  i am a hypocrite just like everyone else; conflict really is great if it makes you grow as a person; but still, let's be completely understanding if we all take a long time to make those healthy changes, okay?

i think my 33 year old client said it best when he asked:  "Is this me growing up?"

* This is an excerpt from Donald Miller's new book Storyline.  I haven't read it, but I did download a sample chapter, which had some great words for thought.  you can download it too at the bottom of the page here.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013


this week my car completely died.  luckily i made it home just in time before it happened, ...
but only to discover dannon's car had also died that same day.  oy.

we now have a rental car to share for our physical transportation, but when it comes to money and these unexpected financial... let's say "challenges" in life, it definitely takes a leap of faith.  
i've learned enough to know that things always work themselves out.  the real struggle is 
learning how to keep the faith and focus on not losing yourself to discouragement in the meantime.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013


"trees don't grow even, they don't grow straight, 
just however makes them happy."
- bob ross


Monday, July 1, 2013

Sometimes You Get Mopped

the past week has been exhausting and i have been tempted to feel sorry for myself and give up and cry in a curled up ball in the corner.  but then i remembered that i have once been mopped.  if any of you have ventured into The Pirate Store at 826 Valencia in san francisco, then you may have also had the unfortunate experience of being mopped.  if not,... well just know that it's entirely possible for a person to be mopped and that it is an intensely horrible experience.  but i survived!  

it's important during difficult times like these to remind myself that
things could be worse... at least i didn't get mopped again.

here's to keeping it all in perspective.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Worth It

the classic "self-photo" gets even more complicated when you
want your highly energetic pup to be a part of it.

but i think these do a much better job at conveying the joy and fun times we had together.
we had a true sabbath this weekend at arroyo burro dog beach in santa barbara, ca.
it was gorgeous - sunshine, ocean ions, the sound of waves crashing, perfectly chilled water,
delicious picnic food, squishy seaweed, and best of all, the uninterrupted company
of each other - exactly what all three of us needed this weekend.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Just In Case You Forgot...

you are FAR more capable than you think you are.


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Good Food

this past saturday i had the night free and a bottle of wine, so i decided to open the windows and do some summer cooking.  i made three of the recipes from 101 cookbooks {a new source of healthy food inspiration for me}, but this one was by far the winner:

oh. so. good!  {and good for you!}

click on the title above for the recipe.  you won't be disappointed!

my personal substitutions:  i didn't have many almonds or any almond meal, so i simply substituted an appropriate amount of wheat flour.  i also used egg whites in the equivalent of 4 eggs.  i found the muffins stuck to the paper cups, so i'll be sure to just stick them right in the muffin tin next time. 
oh yes, there will definitely be a "next time."


Thursday, June 13, 2013

Life Lessons


wise words from lemony snicket.  this is a concept i have been entertaining in a lot of areas of my life lately.  i am slowly but surely learning to take action even though i don't particularly want to take action, don't feel ready to take action and definitely don't feel brave enough to do so.   but, the fear and uncertainty will not go away until after i make my move, not before.  and feeling those fears and uncertainties very strongly does not mean that their messages are accurate or that they have the authority to make the decision for me.  they are feelings.  they may be intense, but they will not last forever.  

it's amazing what we are capable of, and that includes surviving intense fear.  we need not cave in to it.  
we can feel the intensity and take action anyway.  trust your strength.  you will get through it.