Dear Ottawa,

You are a beautiful city. Since moving here 8 years ago, I have enjoyed living here and discovering all there is to find out about you. I love the mix of city and country, the history of downtown, and the treasure trove of local shops and restaurants to explore. Some things I'm loving about you right now:

1. How the bridge to get to work is closed, making an already long commute even longer.
2. How the public transit drivers are striking.
3. The wack-load of snow that got dropped on us.... such that we wouldn't be able to reach the bus stops, even if the busses were running.
4. How my arms are now super buff (ha!) after 3 hours of shovelling your snowy gift and pushing cars out of snow banks.

I really do love you, Ottawa. I love you all year-round. Now if you would graciously skip winter and fast-forward to spring and the tulip festival, I would be ever so appreciative. Thanks!



Made my day

It all started when I put my hand in my pocket.

, I thought with a start, where's my bus pass??

It wasn't in my right hand jacket pocket like it usually was. I remember taking it out the night before. Apparently I hadn't put it back where it's supposed to go, which is silly because the only reason the buss pass had a designated pocket at all was to prevent situations exactly like this. After a few moments of frantic searching through my backpack, I sighed and got out some change to pay the bus fare. That'll teach me.

As I reached over to put the coins in the acceptor, the bus driver blocked it with his hand. "Wait a minute, don't you have a bus pass?" he inquired. I had gotten on the same bus the morning before, and apparently he remembered me! I smiled, impressed that he remembered. "Yeah, but I forgot it today."

He told me to wait and punched some keys on his keyboard. Then he grabbed the transfer that came out of the dispenser and handed it to me. "Here's a day pass. It'll get you home tonight. And I'll see you tomorrow with your pass!"

I couldn't have been more touched and thankful that Father had placed this man in my path today. What grace He gifts to us, every single day in big and small ways! In the end, I did end up finding my bus pass (it was in my backpack, hidden between some folders and books). I'll see who I can give my day pass to, so that this man's kindness can be paid forward. If any of you need to get home via OC Transpo tonight and don't have a pass, let me know. ;)

Thanks for making my day!


Arms high & heart abandoned.

Spent alot of the last 24hrs or so in this position at this event. To be in the midst of thousands who are of the same heart and abandon to worship.......... it's a rush of joy and community like nothing else; a sweet teeny taste of what is to come. What an absolutely beautiful time.

EDIT: My photos from the conference are now up! Go here to see them. :)


Mindless (Metadata) Entry & Persistence

I've been working on entering metadata (data ABOUT data.... now that's interesting - NOT) for ONE protocol file today. It takes so dreadfully long to do one..... (and how many more do I have to go?!). The afternoon was mainly spent defining all the columns on one data sheet. More yawning. More trying to keep myself on task and at my desk by listening to Mark Driscoll preach on prayer (definitely go listen! It's fantastic. That man definitely has a gift for getting basic concepts across in a fresh, cut-to-the-heart, I-never-thought-of-it-that-way-before way. And there's plenty new things to digest too). Constant self-reminders about being a diligent worker and how that flows into adorning the gospel running through my head. And then FINALLY (Thank the Lord.... really.) I finish.

Only to discover that there are 4 more data sheets, all with the same columns, BUT (the cherry on top of the sundae of metadata PAIN) there is no way to paste over what I've done - meaning I have to repeat and repeat and repeat...... O_o

Oh the despair. You know that expression they use in literature, "and his face fell at the bad news"? Yeah. That. Me.

It's 5pm. I think I will go home and try this again tomorrow. Maybe I will get faster. Or maybe I will discover some brilliant way to copy and paste everything. Or maybe not, and my task is to persist. *sigh*

Father, even in this may You be glorified.....



After a week of plunging into the chaos that is NYC, meeting people and seeing old friends, lots and LOTS of shopping, unwinding in Amish country, lots of driving, lots of food, and plenty of quality family time - we are fiiiiinally home. Pulled into the driveway at 8:30am this morning in fact. Oi. o_O Now comes unpacking, cleaning, and getting back into the rhythm of things.

I’m leery of promising timely post-vacation blog entries and lots of flickr updating…. It would be quite the ambitious commitment for me.. *laughs* But here’s to making an honest effort.

On a slightly different note, I was playing around with one of those quiz thingies earlier (Yes, at work. It was a quiet day! Read: booooooored.....), and apparently something that makes me abnormal is that I would prefer having more time to having more money. Huh. What does that say about our generation?

So here are two questions for you today, my dear reader:
1. What are you making an honest effort to do today?
2. Would you rather have more time or more money?


Dress-up madness....

1 saturday afternoon + 5 girls + more clothes/shoes/purses/accessories than you can count - dirty looks from the dressing room attendant = the makings of a rad time out with the girls!

More photos here.



Sand between toes.
Wise words.
Feeling small under a big sky.

The makings of a beautiful evening.


Last minute-ness

I think I have this thing for pushing the limit. 2 hours before our guests were to arrive, and this was what I was starting. Me and my bright ideas......! Simple to do in theory, but let's not forget..... me? Not the most seasoned with the sewing machine. But the idea was planted. No turning back now! 2.5 hours later, with scraps and sewing things strewn all over my floor and running the risk of being labelled "anti-social", I ended up with this (don't laugh. I realize that someone with more experience could've whipped up something better and faster!):

It was worth it. I thought they turned out so well.... not exactly what I had first imagined, but perfect as they are nonetheless. And the best thing? The little guys these were gifted to knew exactly what they were supposed to be.


Oo la la!

Surprise! So here I am, nearly 3am, messing around with blogger (pulling the 5-minute-thing again!). I'm sooooo pleased with the layout tools (new to me), which are super simple to master. Shards is looking so spiffy now, with layout, menus, and esthetics much more like I wanted all along. ^^ I also took advantage of this renovation to do a little cleaning up of the menu.... many of your guys' blogs that haven't been updated in ages have been assumed dormant and links deleted.... but I'd looove to add people back on (hint hint).

Oooh.... so much bloggy love going on right now. It's like a new toy. Or an old favorite, re-discovered (which is better than a new one sometimes!). Perhaps this will inspire more *ahem* consistency around here?

What do you guys think?


One of those mornings

You know what I'm talking about. Those mornings when you crack open your eyes (groan!) - hopefully not late - and the sky is so so grey. And it's raining. You peel back the covers and haul yourself out of bed, while your eyeballs insist that just 5 more minutes of shut-eye wouldn't hurt one bit. Those mornings after those nights when you know FULL WELL what would happen if you stayed up to watch one more........ but you know. Just 5 more minutes. Let tomorrow worry about itself and all that. Those mornings when you genuinely thank the Lord for such things as caffeine and coffee beans, and the person who brews the morning regular, and the office coffee club. Small gratitudes, I tell ya.

Why, what a brilliant suggestion. Of course I'll have another!


A Different Way of Seeing.....

I read this today. I think for me, I need to replace "laundry" with "washing dishes". Those who know me well will know that this is THE chore that I dread..... the chore that I will "forget" to do some nights.... the chore I will purposely ignore other nights. If you live with me, you will know that I try to get out of doing this chore as much as I can, most nights. :p Why do I hate it so? Like Andrea, I feel like doing dishes is "a time-consuming job that never ends". You're stuck in the kitchen by yourself, cleaning up everyone else's mess, while they're off doing whatever they'd like. AND as soon as you finish, the late eater or the snacker will deposit another dirty dish in the sink. Arrrrrrrgh. >.<

BUT. This post gave me such perspective, letting me realize that even dirty dishes are something to be thankful for. They are evidence of God's blessings to us.... His gifts of abundant food to nourish our bodies with, a home to cook and eat and wash in, and loved ones to share it with. You can't really hold a grudge when you realize all that you've been given, can you? :)

Head on over to the FlourishingMother blog if you've got time. Andrea writes really thoughtfully, and it's refreshing to read about her life. Also, she's a voracious reader (yay!) and often cites the most interesting and insightful passages. I've been so inspired to pick up books I never would have considered before because of her!


May Showers....

...isn't it supposed to be "April showers, May flowers"??

It's a busy week.... full of individually good things that have added up and multiplied into one heck of a work/thought load. I'm glad to be doing all that I'm doing, but seriously, I can't wait for this to be aaaaaaall over.

Of course, the depressing rain doesn't help. When the weather turns like this, I either get nostalgic and a little melancholy (on a good day), or else I can easily get sulky and grumpy (on a bad/stressful day - like today). And then when it's beautiful out, my spirits are equally light. You know what I mean? I know I'm not the only one whose mood follows the weather! You know, I heard on the news that during the horribly cold and long winter we just had, people's tempers had become increasingly frayed. Even kids. Isn't it amazing how intricately entertwined everything is? But I digress. What I really wanted to do was remedy these rainy-day-blues by posting a reminder of sunnier times:

Taken back in April. The first day that was over 20-degrees this year found me at my favorite place, savouring the sun and just generally happy that spring is back, so that I can enjoy my sweet spot again. It was soooo relaxing to chill there for awhile and read the Word. Couldn't have asked for a better afternoon. Now isn't that so much better than cold and rain?

ps: more photos from the day will be posted here soon!


Don't Congratulate Me Yet......

Today, I picked up a pair of fabulous peep-toe sling-backs for $20 (awesome deal!), just in time for a wedding reception tomorrow. I picked them out and bought them in 10 minutes. Now, those of you who know me, know that this is reason to be proud (and proud we were)! BUT..... look at what happens when I try to be a super-shopper:

'Nuf said.


15 Minutes This Morning

9h42 - En route to the office. I arrive at the MacKenzie King Bridge bus stop for my transfer, get off the bus and am greeted with the sounds of someone bellowing in French. Huh? Turns out to be a woman, marching down the length of the bridge in heels, impassionately (and seemingly very angrily) shouting her cause, glaring at passersby, waving her arm for emphasis. And she wasn't wearing her pants. What?? That's right boys and girls, Ms. Protester's pants were unbuckled and held up with one hand, but otherwise very much swinging free around her knees. Granted she was wearing a black leotard and not some disturbing sous-vĂȘtement, but seeing as she had alot of skin to cover, that really didn't mean much.

Compleeetely mortified and fighting the absolutely unappropriate urge to giggle, I rush into the mall. 11 minutes til my bus. Other commuters, quickly glancing at the kerfuffle, hurry to get out of her warpath. A mom tries to explain what is happening to her young daughter, "She's not happy is she? We don't want to be near unhappy people." Not the most satisfactory explanation, but goodness, how are you supposed to explain that to a 5-year-old??? Poor kid.

9h48 - Pants come off completely (?!??!??!!!) and are used as a flag to punctuate her raving. The shock has somewhat worn off and I'm wondering what has got her so riled up that she needs to make a statement like this? Someone else waiting for a bus (or deliverance?) mentioned that it was something about an election...... huh. Politics. Naturally.

9h51 - Police (municipal and OC Transpo security) arrive. Woman stops shouting and puts her pants on, as well as a bright blue jacket.

9h57 (because busses are almost NEVER on time....) - My bus arrives. As I am whisked away from the scene, I see the woman sitting down and smoking a cigarette. Officers surround her, some with amused looks on their faces. I wonder what they're talking about?


Thus marks the end of my *interesting* morning. In somewhat less exciting news (but it's exciting for me!!), I finished filing my tax return!! Yaaaaaaay! ^^ Now I can move on to other, more important things. Like editing and posting pictures, right??



I don't know how anyone could be expected to focus on work when there are far more exciting and important-in-the-long-run things to think about. For the 12365441434357th time..... how do people work in an office position for 20-odd years???


One of Those Days.....

Spring has FINALLY COME TO OTTAWA. Can't describe the feeling of walking out the door into blue skies and sunshine every day this week so far..... the birds singing for all they're worth, tempting me to forget work and grab my camera instead. *sigh* I love spring!

But.... *ugh*

With spring and beautiful days comes more creative ideas for personal/ministry projects, and yearning to be anywhere but in this cubicle. I've been getting more and more of those lately (ideas)..... was hit with a particularly potent idea this morning. Sitting here all day, not satisfying the urge to form ideas into something tangible, has been utter creative agony. And the guilt of not being very productive at work sure doesn't help, or lessen the distraction...... Heh.

Anyway. I really can't (and shouldn't) complain. I'm happy about spring, and thankful for the sun, birds, colours, songs, ideas and creativity -- and most of all for He who created all of it.


ps: I haven't made very much of a fuss over my new baby, but suffice it to say I am very very happy with her. I'm hoping she'll have some good friends to play with this summer (aHEM! Chung). I also intend to be more diligent about posting images, dusting off my corner of flickr, and all that other lovely fun stuff.............. as soon as I file my income tax return. :p


Mrs. X

Today at lunch, a bunch of us got to discussing how one properly addresses a woman these days. John - whom I also have the great privilege of calling brother in Jesus - once got in trouble for referring to his host as "madam" multiple times in a presentation where he was an international guest speaker. "Who told you I was married??" she demanded of him afterwards. Apparently you only use "madam" if one is married. We discussed lots of possibilities..... "Ma'am", "Madam", "Miss", "Mrs.", woman, lady..... what is appropriate and the implications of addressing a female a certain way is so complex and is constantly changing with the times.

Who knew?

We finally settled on "Ms." as a safe bet.

Later, I stopped by John's office to discuss work. At the end of the conversation, John put his new knowledge to good use, "Thank you MS. Wong."

I replied, "You're very welcome," and turned to go.

"I'm looking forward to the day when we can call you Mrs. X."

Laughing, I said, "There is no 'X'."

"Not yet, but that's alright. We just need to wait and be patient."


It feels so good to know that there is someone else dreaming and hoping on my behalf.



If it was up to me my life would be a blue print on the table
And every year would have a label
I would know precisely the day that you would come and find me
I'd see your face (the one that I dream of)
I just can't wait ('cause I know)

Someday, someone's gonna change my life
Somehow, someone's gonna make me smile like I never have before
Someday, someday
Somewhere, someone's gonna steal my heart
Somehow, we'll never ever be apart
And I can't wait for that someday
Someday isn't so far away

I've laid awake at night wondering if I had wasted chances
Giving up too soon on small romances
Then I look outside you're under the same midnight sky and
You're waiting too (am I the one that you dream of?)
These dreams come true (and I know)

I guess I'll never know if I passed you on the street the other day
Or maybe you are far across the ocean
Oh but every night I pray to God that somehow
He would send him my way
Someday, someday, someday......

Someday isn't so far away

~PureNRG (C) 2007


Not a good day.

I rarely have bad days.

Most people would say that I am generally a cheery person. Just yesterday a colleague teased me for smiling even as I rant about how much something sucks.

I rarely have bad days.

But somehow, this week is shaping up to be on the dreary side of not-so-great. What a nice way to come home.