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Monthly Archives: January 2011

Adventure

So it’s been decided and paid for. (Well it will be paid for once the credit card bill comes.)

In exactly 49 days, Len and I will be on our way to Peru for an adventure of a lifetime!

(Source)

We are taking a GAP Adventure tour for 8 days. It includes exploring Lima and Cuzco, a visit to the Sacred Valley and Ollantaytambo ruins, and the heart of the trip is a 4-day trek through the Andes mountain range along the Inca Trail, leading to Machu Picchu.

I am both super excited and super nervous! I know this will be an immense challenge, but I also know that it will be an unforgettable experience.

Last night, I watched my secret guilty pleasure reality show, The Bachelor. (Don’t judge please; it’s just so entertaining with all its drama and crazies!)  Anyhoos, I enjoyed watching all those girls try to step out of their comfort zones and face their phobias in order to win the bachelor’s heart (or maybe win their own 15 mins of reality tv fame). In any case, they all waxed poetic about being brave and having the courage to step outside of their own comfort zones to prove that they are adventurous and willing to do anything to capture Brad’s attention.

It got me thinking about my own comfort zones and the times in my life when I have dared to step outside of them and what motivated me to do so. In particular, I thought back to those crazy and wonderful few weeks when Len and I were just getting to know each other, before we officially started dating. Just like those hopeful girls on The Bachelor, I too felt the need to prove I was adventurous and fun and willing to try new things. Now, I certainly didn’t need to tackle things like repelling down the side of a skyscraper, but I did do things I didn’t think I could or would do.

For example, one late, late Friday night, Len convinced me to climb a fence and break into Nitobe Gardens at UBC with him. First, I generally prefer to stay on the legal side of the law. And second, I don’t do fences. Period. And I’m mildly afraid of heights and that was a mighty high fence. And the thing that amazes me is how readily I agreed to this whole thing. I barely even acknowledged the little voice inside me that was shrieking, “this is an insane, bad, bad idea! don’t do it!!” And the next thing I knew, I was getting boostered up onto that fence and found myself inside a most magical, peaceful, and romantic little garden with a boy who sent my heart aflutter everytime he so much as looked at me. And it turned out to be a most lovely, unforgettable night.

See that’s the thing about stepping outside of our comfort zones. I’ve come to realize that we rarely regret doing so. Because no matter how well or how poorly we end up doing, we will have no regrets, will feel proud of ourselves, and more often than not, we surprise ourselves with our own hitherto undiscovered abilities. And who knows just where it might all lead to?

That’s something I try to remind myself every so often. Because the other thing is, I’ve discovered that after you’ve “won” the guy’s heart, it can get so easy to just coast, to no longer challenge yourself because you feel that you no longer need to “prove” anything. And I really don’t need to “prove” anything, at least not to Len. In fact, I never really needed to. Len loves me for me, always has. But it’s me who needs it. I learn to love myself more, be proud of myself more, when I gather enough courage to try new things. It keeps my life more interesting, keeps me happier and more enthusiastic about my life. And when I’m happy with who I am, I have more love to give to my loved ones around me.

I also read that sharing new adventures leads to a better marriage. And what better adventure to test this theory out than on the Inca Trail! I have no doubt that this will be one the biggest physical challenges of my life, and I’m really rather terrified of stepping leaping so far out of my comfort zone. But I also have no doubt that the moment I see the sunrise irradiate over Machu Picchu, I will be filled with gratitude, pride, and love…love for the one who has endless faith in me, and who encourages me every day of my life to explore all of this world’s amazing wonders.

 

Posted by on January 26, 2011 in Adventures

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Catching Up

Len and Joe are currently at the Canucks game (I’m jealous!), so I’m enjoying some lovely quiet time to myself with Law and Order and blogging. :-)

So I thought I’d catch up a bit on the last few days…

It’s been fun with Joe here! He and Len have had some rousing games of Wii Hockey and Wii Michael Jackson dancing:

 

Hee! We also tried out a new (to us) Italian restaurant, Osteria Napoli. It’s practically just down the street from us, and it’s a wonder we hadn’t tried it until now.

It was pretty good. I had the Linguine alla Vongole in white wine sauce, which is my favourite Italian dish, and it was a great flavour, albeit a bit on the oily side for me.

I also tried another restaurant for the first time, The Noodle Box. I met a friend there for lunch, and while the company was excellent and the meal was tasty, I did find it overpriced for what it is. I had the Spicy Peanut Thai noodles, and they were good, but not very authentic.

Today it snowed again!

But luckily it didn’t really stick around for too long, and the roads were fine for driving.

This morning I tried out a homemade Larabar recipe. I’ve actually never tried a Larabar before, cuz, well, at almost $2 a bar, it’s too pricey for my taste buds. But I’m intrigued by their wholesome, short ingredient list. Unlike most granola or snack bars you can buy, Larabars don’t contain any added sugar or unpronounceable ingredients. Unfortunately, I decided to just wing it today and the flavour combination I used didn’t really work. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t good either. I used cashews, medjool dates, orange zest and juice, and vanilla.

In hindsight, I should have just used cashews and dates. The orange didn’t really work, and the vanilla flavour was too strong for my liking. On the plus side, it was an appealing texture, and required no baking.

I’m looking forward to trying out some other variations and will post the recipe once I’m happy with it!

Work has been pretty fun this week, mostly due to those hilarious stories my students came up with for their recital pieces! One of them was about a bird named “Birdo Luongo”. Methinks that kid has been watching a bit of hockey perhaps?

And here’s another, from Daniel, age 9 (who, by the way, has impeccable spelling for his age):

The March of the Terrible Trolls

Once upon a time there were 4 terrible trolls marching in the deep forest at midnight. All of them were 15 feet tall and weighed 1000 pounds!!! They wore ripped clothes because of their fights; they also had size 25 shoes!!! They were young, but no one understood them everyone thought they were mean killers because of their appearance, but really they were harmless and kind but no one understod it… The end!

 I can’t wait for this recital!

Well, I see we lost the hockey game in a shoot-out. :-( So I guess the boys will be back in a bit, and it’s almost bedtime for me! Goodnight!

 

Posted by on January 21, 2011 in Hanging Out

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