Monday, December 15, 2014

Me, Myself, and I.

It's kind of frightening to not know something, or to not have all the answers. We all want that sense of security, that sense of invulnerability, that comfort. But is it sometimes good to keep the unknown where it's at?

My mom once told me not to say "I don't know" but rather to say "I'm not sure" because not knowing is so definite. It puts you in a lower place and makes it seem like it's something you won't ever figure out. Being unsure about something, however, changes the game. It gives us a sense of wanting to be sure and wanting to figuring things out.

I don't know myself.
I used to think that I knew who I was, but the tables have turned. I don't. I'm not entirely sure what my purpose is right now, or what my goals might be. I'm unsure and I can't wrap my head around it.

I am afraid.
I am afraid of what's to come. I am afraid of not knowing. I am afraid of not being able to control things I should be able to control. I am afraid of losing hope in someone or something. I am afraid of losing touch with the people I love and care about. I'm afraid of drifting away, but sometimes it seems to be inevitable.

I honestly don't know where I am right now. Okay, I'm 106% sober and know that I am currently physically in IA, but what I mean is I don't know where my head is in this game. Is it even a game? I'm not sure of what I truly want or even need. I'm not sure if I'm ecstatic with where I am. I'm not sure if what I've built up is sustainable, and it's kind of scary sometimes, you know? At times, I want to drop everything, give up, and start all over... but where will that get me? Fresh starts are nothing if it means to drop everything you've worked hard for and have achieved. That just makes it a waste.

Life is hard, but I have it good. I have it really good and I shouldn't be complaining. I shouldn't be this nervous or confused. I should be reaching high, aiming high, shooting high, but why am I not doing that? What's stopping me? I feel like things have changed these past 6 months or so. I've lost some drive.

I'm really not that crazy.
I'm not an interesting person... I used to be though. I used to try harder, but now I'm slowly fading. I live my life day by day, going through the motions sometimes. At times, all I do is sit there and stare at nothing because I am lazy. I think I've developed a different way of interacting others, a different mindset. I don't live to be noticed anymore. In fact, I don't even care about that anymore.  What I found really matters to me is living for whomever I may be interacting with.
I want you to be noticed. I want you to feel like someone is paying attention to you and cares for you, because it's true. I want to hear about what you have to say about the weather or how your day is going or even what your favorite color might be. I may be a stranger now, but there's a possibility for friendship. I have no other intentions other than letting you know that you are important.

It's time I grow up and look at the bigger picture. Look at everything as a whole and be more appreciative. Patience is something that I need to develop and practice and if you could teach me how I could work on that, I would be very grateful.

But for now, let's change those "I don't knows" to some "I'm not sures." Because I want to leave the door open. I'm not sure who I am but I'm down to figure that out. I want to develop myself and live up to my full potential. I want to be the best me I can be, and the first step is to be a better person.

Let's raise our glasses. Let's be a little more okay with leaving the unknown in the unknown and slowly figuring things out because that's what makes people think... that's what makes individuals, well, individuals. And that's why we keep on keeping on.

So hey, let's keep on keeping on.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

You are what you make of it.

I first saw you in front of me in line on that Tuesday morning. Honestly, I didn't think much of you. It wasn't until a couple hours later, I spotted you again, sitting on your own to the side with a giant textbook in front of you, a pen in hand, and that eager, concentrated look on your face. Maybe I was curious about how one could be so focused on a textbook rather than dozing off. Or maybe, you just looked like an interesting individual, full of stories to share. Or maybe it was the way the sun hit you at just the right angle right at that very moment I glanced over. I don't know why I approached you that day, but I can whole-heartedly say that I have never looked back.

I see you as a captivating individual, quirky in your own way. You have no enemies, no problems, and no challenges that you can't face. You are carefree and really live your life the way you want to live it. You always amaze me with how smart you are, from throwing random facts at me, to being able to explain anything I ever ask. You make everyone around you comfortable and always seem to know what to say. You make me realize things.
I admire you. I think highly of you. I want to learn from you.

I would have never expected you to open up to me the way you did. I never expected those words that came out of your mouth, or those thoughts that you voiced that engulfed your mind the way a tornado would engulf lives. I never thought you would cry in front of me, or even how we we would cry together. I didn't know that it was possible for an individual, let alone you, to feel this way, to hurt this way, to break this way. These situations you told me about, I can't bear to imagine anyone face, but you faced them alone. You did it, you succeeded, and today you stand tall. You're a fighter.

You amaze me. You are so strong. You take adversities and hardships and learn from them. They don't take you down- they build you up. They made you titanium. They made you wiser. The made you, well, you.
Telling you that I am in awe of you would be an understatement. And if this means anything to you at all, I just wanted to let you know that I am so proud of you. I am so proud of what you've become.
I am ecstatic that you are part of my life and that I can call you my friend.

Take me back to the day when the sun was hitting you at the perfect angle, because I want to relive the beginning of the rest of my life.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

I've only got forever and forever is fine.

"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."
- Maya Angelou

Helloooooo there,

I thought I'd attempt to compile my thoughts into words...

To a friend, from a friend.

So this is for everyone reading, whoever you might be:

It's okay to feel.

It's okay to to feel vulnerable and to let that vulnerability show. It's okay to hurt and to express it. It's okay to scream and shout.
Just don't hide behind the curtains for the entirety of the show.

I want to know you. 

I want to learn about you. I want to dig deeper. I want to know what makes you tick. I want to know how your status, possessions, and power make you feel. And when you're given the chance to be set free from them, would you take it? I want to know how you feel when you find someone who you can relate to. I want to know about the way you breathe when you're out on a single patch of dirt surrounded by nothing but what this earth has given us. I want to see what gets you through the day.

You drive me insane- just like living on a never ending roller coaster. You make me think so hard that my brain just wants to slip out of my skull. You keep my mind floating in midair in a broken room. And yes, you say you want to talk, you say you want to know and that you care. You add on all this bullshit that keeps me hanging on a thread. I know it's all pretend, but I can't help but try so hard to keep grasp.

Let's chat.

Let's converse about your thoughts on nature? Politics? Life? What makes your heart jump and helps you fall asleep with a smile on your face? What makes you open your eyes a little wider or makes you raise your eyebrows? What tickles your toes? How can I bring out that half grin of yours?

How do you feel about pain? Let's share the hurt. Let's share the things that really bring us down and tips us over and runs circles in our mind while we pull our hair out. Open up to me and tell me what really rattles your bones and what makes each and every strand of hair stand up on the back of your neck. What are you afraid of losing and what would you do when you've lost it?

What about those real dreams? The ones that you think you're too short to reach. Do adversities and hardships ring bells? Let's discuss shame and those little things that you do that you find embarrassing, but I find alluring. Or those misconstrued meanings, or those things you think you should know, but truly don't. What about the false perceptions that breeze through the solemn air? And the standards you set for yourself or the expectations that others set for you to meet that overwhelm you? Because let's face it, we're always hard on ourselves.

I'll open the conversation if you say you'll try because I'm here to shatter those fears with you. I'm here to hold your hand and guide you through the burning room with your eyes closed. I'm here to face those situations you're trying to find the easy escape for because you're not going to do that. You're going to face them head on. And once you do really overcome the difficulties, you defy gravity. I know you can. There's so much I want to say but when the opportunity finally arrives, it's just a blank space.

You're one who I look forward to share exciting things in my life with. And when you speak, I'm quiet and calm because all I want to do is take everything in. And when we have that silence in our conversation due to the unnecessary need for words, I'm completely satisfied with just the breath between us. And when I make a fool of myself like I always do, please don't be afraid to laugh because I love that laugh of yours. I want to hear more. I want to see more.  I want to know more.

Forget safety because that would mean leaving behind this jungle gym in which we call reality. But don't forget my words because I mean every bit of it. And I have to admit, I'm to the point in which I don't care that you lie in another universe. All I'm asking for is a little piece of you; just a little bit of attention... Just a speck of dust- is that okay?

Open yourself to me. Open your heart- be brave and vulnerable and have the strength to trust me because that's all I ask. I promise that I won't touch a strand of hair, let alone break anything because I respect you. And when you need your space, just tell me and I'll be out of sight.

You have a beautiful soul (not quoting JMcCartney on purpose <3). I'd love to stick around and watch it bloom if you let me.
And you say you don't know yourself, so let's figure that out. And when we figure all this shit out, we'll wash ourselves in our tears for this new found realization is what we've been longing to discover.

I know that I am asking for a lot, but I'm ready whenever you might be, even if that's in forever because, well, forever is just a moment of time for someone you care about.
I just want to let you know that you're worth it.
The floor is open.
Care to dance?



Friday, October 24, 2014

1st Marathon Recap!

So, today I ran my first marathon ever on Sunday (10/19) and it sure was an experience...
It may have been one of the dumbest things I've ever done, but it was so worth it!

To start, here's a look at how I trained for this marathon:
Mon, 6/30: 1 mile (in Vietnam!)
Mon, 8/25: 2 miles
Sat, 9/6: 9 miles (this is when I decided to buckle down and run once a week)
Sat, 9/13: 11 miles
Sun, 9/21: 9 miles
Sun, 9/28: 15.5 miles
Sat, 10/4: 22 miles
Those were literally the only dates since June that I slipped on my running shoes and went for a jog. Yep, 7 times. Evidence 1 of this being one of the dumbest things I've ever done.
I didn't go for a run the weekend before the marathon because I took a trip to Boston. There, I did a lot of walking in my heeled boots. That was until Tuesday the 21st. On Wednesday, my Achilles started hurting quite a bit when simply walking, but I just thought it'd heal on it's own since I didn't do anything to induce the pain. On Friday, the pain was still there and even worse. I went to see our athletic trainer and she told me that I had pulled something and it was swollen and to not do anything that would put pressure on it... like run, let alone run a marathon because I might rupture it. Of course, I'm kind of a rebel so I decided to play it by ear. Plus, I wanted to sport the orange (my fave color) marathon shirt that we got at packet pickup. I couldn't wear it if I didn't run it! Evidence 2. I got my Achilles rock taped on Saturday and that somewhat helped the pain.
Because of my lack of training, my goal for this race was 5 hours. I just wanted to finish it whether I walked or ran. This was set before the Achilles problem. On race day, my goal was just to do what I could... I've run 2 half marathons before this. The last one was a fun one in the end of May that I passed out encouraging notes from our fanny packs and tweeted selfies at every mile. I wanted to do the selfie thing for this race as well, but I didn't even think I was going to finish so I decided not to. Plus, I obviously really suck at selfies- sad truth.
On Sunday morning, I told myself I was feeling good. I knew I could drop out if the pain became unbearable. I popped 2 ibuprofen tabs and was off to the start line. It was painful but I told myself to suck it up until mile 8 cause I had buds with more ibuprofen waiting for me there. Luckily, by mile 6 the meds kicked in. I felt good other than the pain in my arches due to running in weird ways trying to keep myself off my right Achilles. I never got the mile 8 ibuprofen :(  I fueled with 1/2 a banana at mile 13.1 (2:02). My goal was to get there by 2:30 so I was going faster than I had planned. By mile 14 the pain killers wore off. It was worse than before and I was desperate... and stubborn, so I kept going. I asked a lady cheering on the street if she had any ibuprofen. Surprisingly, she ran to her purse and busted it out. I basically took drugs from a stranger on the street. Evidence 3. I popped a tab at mile 16 and fueled with red vinesssssss YUM. I was feeling good until mile 23, when I hit the wall. Downed 1/2 pack of GU there. Gross, but my legs were giving out. I decided to walk/run the remainder of the race. Bummer. At about 0.2 miles left when I could SEE the finish line, my left leg, the leg that took most of the run, started cramping and tightening up like crazy. I had to step to the side. I ended up finishing at 4:18 which was below my goal of 5:00. The last 3 miles slowed my overall time down like crazy, but it just had to be done.
In the end, I finished and it now sucks even more to walk. The end.

Basically... I trained for my first marathon in 7 runs, pulled my Achilles 2 days before race day but still ran it, took drugs for a stranger on the street, and finished under my goal time and now am legally allowed sport my orange 26.2 quarter zip!! Alright, when's our next one?? haha... not. Well, maybe.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Crock Pot Magic: Spicy Pulled Chicken

So apparently there is an egg white shortage in America. Companies and corporations are now requesting egg whites and adding them as an option on their menu. Is this America's effort in becoming "healthier"? Being scared of yolks? I don't think that's a good first step, but it's somewhat of a step!

Guess what? I whipped out the crock pot today!

And what did I make?
Some spicy pulled chicken! I'm amazed by how easy it was!
Boy, was this spicy! It was a really nice kick though! The cilantro gave me a nice fresh relief and made the dish smell fantastic!

Spicy Crockpot Pulled Chicken 

Ingredients (6-8 servings)

  • 2 lbs chicken breast
  • 1 tomato on the vine
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) fire roasted tomatoes
  • 1 can (4 oz) diced green chille
  • 1/2 onion (can add more, that's all I had on hand. I used red.)
  • 2 celery stalks
  • 3 cloves of fresh garlic
  • 2 tablespoons of chili sauce (I used Sambal Oelek) <- that stuff is amazing.
  • 1 Tbs coconut oil
  • 1 Tbs chili powder
  • 1 Tbs cumin
  • Adobo seasoning or salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • Garlic & onion powders to taste
  • Costco no salt seasoning (optional, I just like the flavor and am not watching my sodium intake)
  • Cilantro (to garnish)


  1. Chop up the onion and garlic and sautee them for a bit in a pan with some oil until the start becoming brown. This is to bloom them in order to get the flavor out.
  2. Dice tomatoes and chop up celery into bite sized pieces
  3. Throw (not literally unless you're good at aiming) all ingredients into the the crock pot and give it a quick stir.
  4. PLUG YOUR CROCKPOT IN and turn it on to low. 
  5. Leave it alone for 9-10 hours.
  6. When finished, take 2 forks or a fork and spoon or chopsticks or  and just shred the chicken. I was so amazed by how easily it shredded.
I precut anything that needed to be precut the night before and put them in containers. At 8 AM, I opened cans and containers, threw everything into the crockpot, plugged it in, turned it on, and went to class. When I got back at around 6 PM, it was ready to DEVOUR. Garnished with cilantro, dinner is served. 

How much did this recipe cost me?

  • 2 lbs chicken x $1.90/lb = $3.80
  • 1 tomato ~ $0.70
  • 1 can of tomato ~$1.00
  • 1 can of chille ~$1.00
  • 2 Celery Stalks ~$0.50
  • 1/2 Onion ~$0.50 (red tends to be pricier)
  • Garlic ~$0.50
  • Spices ~$1.00
  • Cilantro (bunch) ~$0.50
    • Total = $14. This should give me around 8 meals ~$1.75/meal
      • Good deal bro.

Have you invested in a crockpot yet?
What's your favorite recipe?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come."
Proverbs 31:25

That's my new favorite bible verse. It says a lot.
So tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent and our six week preparation for Easter, when we celebrate Jesus's Resurrection. We place ash on our foreheads as a sign of repentance. During Lent, we fast our distractions that have caused us to turn away from God. This is a time of acknowledgement and turning our hearts solely back to God by focusing on prayer, fasting, and almsgiving.

I've shared how I will be fasting on a previous blog post and I'm excited to be doing this for something greater than myself, beyond myself.

Let's get started!

What are your thoughts on Lent?
Are you giving anything up?

Thursday, February 27, 2014


On a more successful note, this past Monday, my boss attended my pilates class and required that I get feedback from my participants. I had a class of about 22 participants. I've taught 5 classes so far and the number of people who attended have ranged from 10 (once when the weather was really bad) to 30. It's fun to teach and the responses below make me more confident. Below are the responses that my boss compiled for me, the good and the bad.

Class & Instructor: Krystle – Pilates
What did you enjoy most about this class?
·         Krystle is very engaged in the group and each week is different
·         Very fun
·         Krystle’s peppy personality
·         The music and the laid-back feel
·         Burn sessions – Krystle makes it difficult, but fun
·         The good music                            
·         By far the best workout class I’ve taken at the University – all because of the instructor
·         The music and exercises are fun and entertaining
·         Krystle was super fun. She pushes you without seeming intimidating
·         Good attitudes – enjoyable
·         I love Krystle’s workouts because they actually burn. Her personality is very “real” too, which I like
·         Krystle really pushes me and challenges me to do more than I normally would
·         I enjoy how funny Krystle is  
What could the instructor have done differently to make this class more worthwhile?
·         Less calf workouts
·         More ab workouts
·         Break it up – not do all obliques in a row or all triceps. Mix it up throughout the class
·         No push ups
·         Less arms
·         Power practice
·         More stretching at the beginning and end
·         Less burn sessions 

It's difficult to cater to each individual, but i'll do my best to improve. There's always room for improvement!

Saturday, February 22, 2014


This spring I go to a nursing home every week to volunteer. Today was my 3rd or 4th time there and I'm really enjoying it. It's really interesting to see all sorts of residents and their capabilities. Because they're quite a bit older than me, I always wonder what their past was like. I think my interactions with them really test my patience and understanding. If you show respect to them, they will respect you. Old people are so cute!! Especially when you get to help them with bingo!! When they're playing for candy bars, oh man, it's no joke.

Have a great start to your week!!

How do you feel about the elderly?

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Tea Day

Hi there! Happy Tuesday! We're one day away from hump day!

It's supperrrr dupeerrr warm here today! All the snow is melting so it's super wet, but we hit 50 degrees! It feels like summer! Unfortunately, they're predicting BLIZZARDS on Thursday & Friday. WHAT IS THIS DSM?? CAN YOU MAKE UP YOUR MIND ABOUT THE WEATHER??

Similar to DSM, I was just so out of it today. On Tuesdays, I pretty much have class from 10 AM to 4 PM and today, we had a test in one of my middle classes. Guess what happened? I forgot my calculator. During the 10 minute in between classes break, I ran through puddles to my apartment, even took a potty break, got my calculator and ran back... with 4 minutes to spare and a greeting from my professor telling me to calm down. Lady, I just ran back to get my calculator for your test. P.S. I used the calculator for like 2 questions on the test.... worth it? Maybe. If I got them right :)

To end the day on a better note, I recently got my Teavana order so I decided to brew a large pitcher of tea!! I usually just brew a cup at a time, so this is new. First trial tea: Spiced Apple Cider Rooibos.
The pitcher is HUGEEEE.
It even came with a nifty tea brewing guide.

It's smelling delicious right now. I hope it tastes as good as it smells... and as it cost!

Have you ever brewed such a large pitcher of tea? What's your favorite?

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Sunday Funday

It's Sunday, the start of a new week. We're already halfway through the month.
Time goes by crazy fast! It's still super wet and cold in DSM.

Coffee shops are kind of awesome. The vibe really takes me into the study zone... for about 2 hours. Today, I decided to try something different and go to Panera for some study & catch up time with Diane. We spent about 4 hours there until we were totes done with studying. Phew!

At mass, father talked about how God gives us the opportunity to make our own choices and how minor decisions now can take a hard hit at us in the future. Think your actions through. That's something to think about!

I  made the decision to paint my nails to start my week!
The color? Essie's SUNDAY FUNDAY!

I also needed to come up with a pilates routine for my class tomorrow! This is starting to get difficult!
I need to get some jokes ready to lighten the mood and break the silence!
Any suggestions?


Written on (2/1/14)

Today, I sat through a presentation with a speaker who spoke a lot about integrity and chasing things that really matter. It made me realize that I'm like everybody else; I chase things that don't matter. My priorities aren't straight and it's going to take time for me to change that mindset. You see, I say I'm a good person with strong morals and values, but what can I do to prove that to myself? I think it has a lot to do with good character. (Character - what you do when no one is looking.) It really is something to keep in the back of your mind.

Prof C, the speaker, made it clear that our generation is the future and we can't fall into what society sees we will fall into. This is a nice video that says a lot.

THERE ARE NO QUICK FIXES. We have to EARN our achievements so no one can ever take them away from us or hold them against us.