Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Houston Reunions and Celebrations

Congratulations to my ito Parul & Peter!!!

Monday, June 20, 2011

From Hanoi to the Ranch

Today I am leaving this behind:
And heading to this:

Perhaps a little bit of culture shock is in store :)

I have loved my month in Hanoi (and surrounding area) - my work here was not only professionally an amazing experience, but also highly personally rewarding.  I love the glimpse I got into life here, I love eating out of a little bowl and sitting on little stools and becoming a pro at shoveling food into my mouth with chopsticks.  I love the gentleness of the people here, their deep care and concern about myself and my collegues... I love that I am leaving this place with lifelong friends.

But I also love that when I get off the plane on the other side, I will be back at my roots - I'll get to have my arms around my grandparents in just hours - and stop and breath on the ranch for several days.  I can't wait to rise and set with the sun and help with projects around the house and corrals, catch up with cousins, and more than anything, soak in every second I get with my grandma and grandpa.

I am both leaving and landing with a full heart. :)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

I hope they aren't hungry.

I just thought you should know that I am checking my email in front of a crocodile pit.  There are about 9 sitting on a ledge right in front of me and another 10 of them are sketchiliy staring at me with their beady eyes just barely poking out of the water.  Sometimes the 'wow I can't believe this is my job' feeling is warm and fuzzy.... and sometimes its .... wondering what in the world I got myself into.

That is all.

Monday, June 6, 2011

At the site

Today our leadership team traveled to the site where we will train our staff and welcome our kiddos.
On the other side of the bridge and under that thatched roof the team is working away, making posters, creating documents on their laptops, brainstorming ideas...

Walking across that bridge and toward our team a few minutes ago I had one of those 'i-can't-believe-this-is-really-my-job' moments...

Training starts tomorrow for the first ever camp in northern Vietnam... isn't that something?!.. send us good thoughts!
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Sunday, June 5, 2011


Last night we were walking to dinner, and then suddenly everyone started yelling and running for cover.  Out of nowhere, the wind started whipping around - things started falling off of rooves and balconies, little stands knocked over..... and then it was like the sky opened and a giant bucket dumped down on us... for hours.


Saturday, June 4, 2011

Keeping with the food theme..

I find the food here so pretty. If you looked at my camera this week and had to guess what my profession is, you would probably guess professional street food eater.

I promise we've also been doing our real work (we don't eat ALL day) - but somehow, I don't have photo proof of any of that.

Here's lunch - - tofu with greens and rice noodles..chili lime sauce.. delicious.

Stopping for some dessert on the way home... fresh fruit  and red bean with coconut milk and my favorite.. sweetend condensed milk - all topped with shaved ice.
Delicious AND pretty... best case scenario.
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Friday, June 3, 2011

A photo tour of what I've eaten this week in Vietnam.

I realized yesterday that 99% of the pictures I have taken since getting back to Vietnam are of the food... so that's all I have to show for my week.  The good news is that Vietnamese food is one of my favorite things on this planet.  This is all street food, by the way... and (knock on wood VERY hard )- I haven't gotten sick once!

 Bun cha - my favorite food in the world.
 Sidewalk barbeque - they bring the meat and the grill, you cook! 
 Spring rolllllls - actually they said this was some other form of Pho..
 MORE bun cha - yuuuuuum!
 Greens and some kind of mystery meat.
And my personal favorite - we went on a search for a restaurant, and a little girl said to follow us.. so we did... and we ended up in her house!  They slapped us down in the middle of their bedroom, pulled in some plastic tables, and served us a small feast.  Oh Hanoi, you warm my heart!