LA Visit + 2015 Thoughts

Man, I have been struggling with motivation to do anything this week, thanks to the cold weather here. Mike and I got back from a week in LA with his family on Tuesday, and I think my system has been shocked by the drastic change in temperature (85 to…-7 Fahrenheit yesterday morning). I got on the treadmill last night and managed to run about a mile before calling it quits =\ I think I’m getting sick again…hopefully just a minor cold that goes away in a day or two!

New Year’s Recap (LA)

Because Mike’s and my family live on opposite coasts, we divide up the holidays as follows: Thanksgiving with my family, New Year’s with Mike’s family in LA, and Christmas alternating between the two families each year. This year, we spent Christmas with my family and flew to LA the day before New Year’s and spent about five days there. Thankfully, I get along really well with my in-laws, so we always have a great time (and I love the dose of SoCal warmth in the middle of winter!).

We had more to celebrate this year than usual – Mike’s brother got engaged late last year, so we spent some time getting to know his new fiancée – congrats Steven and Jess!
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We ate lots of Korean food on New Year’s Day, including the obligatory rice cake soup (dukk gook) – Koreans always eat dukk gook on New Year’s because it’s supposed to bring you good luck and add a year to your age. No complaints here – I love dukk gook! We spent lunch with Mike’s maternal grandma and dinner with his paternal grandparents.
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We always eat a ton when we’re in LA and have established favorites we always visit, but we discovered two new places this visit as well. The Chinese bakery 85°C (named for the optimal temperature for brewing coffee) arrived in Torrance this summer, and I can attest to the tastiness of their coffee and pastries. My particular favorite is the taro bun – soft and squishy on the outside, tasty taro filling on the inside.
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We also tried Okrumong, the Korean shaved ice place in Torrance. With wonderfully textured ice combined with a bit of condensed milk, and accompanied by red bean paste and rice balls made in house, the snow bowls were perfection (but over-priced at $8 a bowl). I got the Gold Bowl with 5-grain powder and Mike got the green tea version.
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I ran a lot during the visit, and made it to Corepower Yoga with Mike once too. My in-laws live less than 3 miles from the beach, and you can imagine how glorious it was to run in t-shirts and shorts after weeks of bundling up. I did back to back 8 miles on Saturday and Sunday so that I could run to and along the beach, and two shorter runs during the week around a local park. I think if I lived here, I’d run 50-60 miles a week!

2015 Intentions

I’ve given some thought over the last two weeks about what I want in the new year, and I think the answer is growth. Growth in my relationships with friends and family, growth in my character, spiritual growth in my walk with God.

I’m going into 2015 without any resolutions (I didn’t stick to most of the ones I made last year) but with an intention to live more mindfully. To me, that means thinking about where to invest my free time (instead of plopping in front of the TV after work). I’m planning to join another church small group (I haven’t gone to one since spring last year), spend more time with friends, read more books, and start volunteering at Carpenter’s Shelter again. I know these are ways I want to spend my time, and that are somehow so re-charging for me as well!

From Around the Web:

DJ Earworm Mixed Every Pop Song of 2014 Into One Catchy Mashup (College Humor)

50 Cats and Dogs in Need of Naps (Huff Post) – old, but so cute

Assume the Best Intentions (Peace, Love & Oats) – A reflective piece from Katie that I really needed a few weeks ago

 

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