November 27, 2008

Gobble Gobble

Wishing you and your family a wonderful Thanksgiving!!

I am sure looking forward to turkey, mmmmm. I am also looking forward to being with family.

November 24, 2008

Turkey Shoot

They had a Turkey shoot at work yesterday. My co-worker was curious and so I agreed to check it out with her. It was actually kind of fun. I had never been to the ROTC part of campus and had no idea that we had a rifle range. I actually got to shoot with a .22 caliber pistol. I have never held a real gun in my life.

Our targets were paper turkeys. They gave us 9 shots and I didn't do too bad, at least I don't think the paper turkey suffered too much. Out of 9 shots, 6 of them actually made it somewhere on the paper. I didn't win a prize, but I gave it a shot (a shot, get it, hahaha.)

November 23, 2008

Ocho Ocho

Yesterday, we celebrated my lola's 88th birthday. My lola is so full of life you would never think that she was 88 years old. She was running around telling people that she was ocho ocho (ocho is the number 8 in Tagalog. It is also in Spanish too). In the Philippines there is a song and dance called the ocho ocho and when ever she told people she was ocho ocho, she would do the moves to the dance.

Here is the ocho ocho:

Picture an 88 year old woman shaking her butt and dancing the ocho ocho. It was great!! You gotta love her. It was just awesome. My lola is awesome. I hope that I am like her when I come to be ocho ocho!

November 20, 2008

Happy 88th Birthday Lola!!

Today is my grandmother's 88th birthday. (Lola means grandmother in Tagalog/Filipino). My lola is such a beautiful and wonderful woman and I am so fortunate to have her in my life. She looks the same as when she first immigrated to the U.S., which was back when I was around 4 years old. I hope to age as gracefully as she has. My lola helped to raise my brother and me, she was always there for me for as long as I can remember. Her strength, beauty, and love always shone through with everything that she did. She was always someone I admired and looked up to. Today she turns 88 and she is still going strong. She is just an amazing woman and I would be lucky to be half the woman that she is.

Happy Birthday Lola!! I love you! Thank you for everything, you have helped to make me in to the woman I am today and I thank you for being such a wonderful role model. Mahal kita!

November 18, 2008

I walked

Sunday, I walked for Autism. With the fires that took over Southern California, we were a little concerned that about the walk and the air quality. We received an email on Saturday that the walk would go on as scheduled. Mr. Bear and I drove down to Anaheim stadium early Sunday morning. As we were driving down the 57 fwy, we passed the Brea area and the smoke through that area was extremely thick. The sun could not be seen through the smoke at all. It was pretty eerie. But as we drove several miles past that area, the skies were clear blue and absolutely beautiful. There was no trace of smoke or ash. It was amazing the stark contrast a few miles made.

When we arrived, we found the rest of our team at Anaheim Stadium. Mr. Bear did not walk, he came to lend moral support and hang out with a few of the guys who came to lend moral support as well. Their definition of moral support was tailgating in the parking lot. But none the less they were very supportive.

The walk itself went well. We walked around the stadium and then into the stadium on around the field. It was pretty cool to walk on the actual field. My friend's brother who has autism especially loved being able to walk on the field of Angels stadium. He is a huge Angels fan and he said it was a dream come true. The excitement and smile on his face made it all worth it.

The walk was a bit disorganized, no one knew how many lap around the stadium we supposed to walk. We asked volunteers and no one seemed to know. We walked 3 laps because that seemed to be about 5k/3 miles. No matter what we had a good time and our team did a nice job of raising some money. I believe we met our team goal of $1,000.

The bad thing was that it took us 2 hours to get home because they had closed a part of the fwy due to the fire. But it was worth it for a great cause.

Thank you to everyone who supported me!! I deeply appreciate your support.

November 15, 2008


There are so many fires in So. Cal. There are fires everywhere. I have a few friends who have homes close to the Yorba Linda fire and the Chino Hills fire. They are safe right now and their home is safe so far. I hope it stays that way.

This all hits very close to home for me. In 2003, a fire was very, very close to my home and my mother-in-law's home. We were fortunate but the fires were extremely close. We were under mandatory evacuation. It was a frightening experience so I understand what many of these people are feeling. We decided to stay but I had the car packed and I was ready to grab Chase Monster and Su-Su (my orange tabby who is no longer with us) and go. Mr. Bear stayed up the street at his mom's house putting out spot fires; her home was much closer to the fire and if it got anywhere near her home, he would have to come down to my house in order to get out, so we had a plan. If I felt the need I could have left. It really made a difference to stay and put out spot fires; the embers would fly onto the property and putting those out helped to prevent the loss of their home. Several neighbors' homes were lost and the firefighters were busy and could not put out individual home fires. The fires were so close, you could see it. The next day it looked like a war zone, with ashes all over the ground and the streets so empty. It was very eerie and took some time to clean up.

I hope everyone is safe and I wish strength to all our brave firefighters who are all working so hard. I hope the weather cooperates and containment happens very soon. My thoughts and prayers are with all the people who are effected by the fires today.

* Note: I do not advocate that people stay when there is a mandatory evacuation. It was a personal, family decision we made with the knowledge of where the fires were and the risks. We were far enough from the fire yet knew that the winds could bring the fire closer to us with embers flying in the air.

November 13, 2008

The Big ShakeOut

Today is the The Great Southern California ShakeOut Drill to prepare for "the big one." We are participating in this at work. At work, I am on one of the emergency response teams. You never know when something will happen, whether it be a natural disaster or a shooting or any other emergency. We need to be prepared for an emergency.

Living in Southern California, I am acutely aware that we are due for "the big one," a really big earthquake. In fact according to Lucy Jones (the seismologist at Caltech) we are 40 years overdue! We experienced an earthquake over the summer, but the "the big one" is predicted to be a 7.8 magnitude, which is 5000 times larger than the 5.4 magnitude that we experienced in July. It is not about if but when it will actually happen. It is expected that utilities to be down for about 6 months, freeways to be closed, a loss of communication (we experienced a loss cell phone reception from the last earthquake), 2,000 deaths, 50,000 injuries, $200 billion in damage and other losses, and severe, long-lasting disruption. This really makes you think about the reality of this.

At work, we are prepared and have been training to prepare for any disaster. I am prepared with what I need to do at work and I kind of hope to be at work when if something were to happen because of how prepared we are. Actually it is better for kids to be at school if an disaster were to take place, since schools are more prepared than many households. So, I really need to think about getting my home prepared and think about how I can communicate with my family, especially if communications are down (like it was with the Chino Hills earthquake this summer). This website has a lot of great resources for earthquake preparedness and this one has info on making your own preparedness kit. I really need to get a kit together. Southern Californians really need to be prepared. we are due for that big one at any time. BE PREPARED!

November 11, 2008


Last week I blogged about Walk Now for Autism. But with all the excitement of the elections, I am afraid that the important of the walk on Sunday was buried on my blog. I am walking on Sunday and it is for a very special reason.

When I was in college, I worked as a therapist for children with autism. I had the pleasure to work with several different children who were all special and wonderful in their own way. I enjoyed my work and any little progress that they made was an enormous success. I was the primary therapist for one special boy in particular, Paul Adam. It has been over 10 years since I have seen Paul Adam but my experiences with Paul Adam will always be a part of who I am.

Paul Adam and I made a lot of progress in the year that we worked together. My primary role as his behavioral therapist was to assist him in gaining appropriate social skills. He had the most amazing smile and was a very sweet boy. He was smart and made a lot of successes in our time together. I had to leave him when I moved from the area to go to graduate school. I will always remember Paul Adam and the successes he made through our work together. I think of him every now and then. He must be 16 or 17 by now and the last I had heard from the family, he had mainstreamed into a 1st grade class (that was 10 years ago or so). I hope that he was successful in that and that he has continued to make many more success over the years.

Though I no longer work as a behavioral therapist, as a psychologist I realize the crucial importance of research. Research to understand therapeutic techniques that are most effective to help children and adults with autism. It is because of this that I will walk on Sunday (if you have been following my blog, I would run if it was a run). I walk for Paul Adam and the other kids that I worked with in college, I walk for my friend's son who has autism, I walk for my friend's adult brother with autism, and I walk because I believe everyone with autism needs my support.

Please join me in my fight for a cure for autism. A small amount of even $5 or $10 makes a huge difference in the lives of the more than 1 million Americans living with autism today. I hope you consider supporting this important cause.

November 7, 2008

Have to work on Sunday!

Booo!! I just realized that where most people have a long weekend, I have a short one. I have to work on Sunday. So not fair!

I hope everyone else has a nice relaxing weekend.

November 5, 2008

This is crazy!

Seriously, Californians said yes to discrimination and eliminating the rights of people???? What??? I guess I just don't understand. I don't understand how this will be good for California, I don't understand. We took a total step backwards in California.

November 4, 2008


Congratulations to our new president!! Barack Obama is our president-elect. What a wonderful and historic day!! I believe that the best person won and I believe that positive change is coming our way.

Barack Obama Logo

Rock the vote!

November 3, 2008


I am participating in Walk Now for Autism to help find a cure for autism. Autism is the second most common developmental disorder in the United States affecting one in every 150 children born today. Despite some promising discoveries, the cause of autism is unknown and a cure does not exist. Research is crucial. Every 20 minutes another child is diagnosed with autism. Not only must we find ways to improve the quality of life for children and adults with autism, but we also must find a cure, and soon.

Walk Now for Autism is our chance to make a difference in the fight against autism by raising money for autism research and heightening public awareness. Please join me in my fight to help fund essential research. I will be walking on November 16 and would like you to support those affected by autism. You can donate to Walk Now for Autism and join my team online through my webpage. Donations can also be mailed to Autism Speaks using the donation form located on my page or send me a check made out to Autism Speaks. My team name is; please note this on your check and the donation form.

Please join me in my fight against autism. Even a small amount of $5, $10, or whatever you feel most comfortable with makes a difference in the lives of the more than 1 million Americans living with autism today.