Friday, December 11, 2009

nothing says love like a sharp knife...

to quote deb of smittenkitchen fame (see her kitchen gift guide for the foodie in your life). and indeed, that's what i got for the holidays this year.

it's beyond exciting to have big girl knives. i have never previously had a what anyone could classify as a true kitchen knives. knives i've used in the kitchen - for sure. certainly none of quality or that made my life easier.

the knives i had now... wow, they are a dream. i went to sur la table to hold some knives, because after all the reading about various brands, it's what feels right in your hand... so, i went held knives... wusthoff, henckels, global... but i fell in love with Shun. not only are the blades beautiful (i honestly feel like they should be framed on my wall) but they felt so right to hold.

however, these knives are anything but inexpensive, and so i went home with lots to think about - if i needed a set or if just one really good knife was worth all the others. got home, was talking to tim about them, and it turns out that Kai USA (the distributor of Shun cutlery here in the US) also is home of kershaw knives, which makes some pocket knives tim happens to like. And to top it off they're located in a suburb of portland. so, that's exciting. but then tim tells me they happen to be having they're annual factory sale.

we go.

and well, here's what i came home with...

this is the mini 4inch chef's knife... a fast favorite with tim.

the 5inch utility knife... so far works great for everything...from cutting oranges to cheese.

the hollow-edge 7 inch santoku... now this is destined to become my favorite knife... perfect size for chopping... well just about anything. (i have to learn to keep my fingers out of the way, though...)

10 inch chef's blade - it's a beauty, and i am looking forward to taking some knife skills classes to feel comfortable with it.

9 inch serrated multi-purpose (bread) knife. and wow, it's a different world to have a bread knife that, well, cuts bread. instead of crushing it, like i'm used to.

and the cleaver. while not a very good picture, i actually think this is a beautiful blade, and would totally hang it on my wall.

before you have a heart attack, realize, please that i did not pay anywhere close to MSRP on these. it was the factory sale and things were priced extremely reasonably. which is not to say i didn't spend some money, but i think it was a good investment (and many thanks to mama and tim who contributed heavily to this purchase as my gift this year) and they make me happy!

in case you're wondering, these are the Shun Ken Onion set, which differ in the handles from the normal Shun line. The normal Shun line comes with offset handles for either the right-handed or left-handed user. I handled some of these and they were great. However, the Ken Onion line was on a deeper discount and has ambidextrous handles which is key in a house with different-handed cooks...

and honestly, i don't think the girl in the store was lying when she said they would change my life... as you can imagine, i can't wait to get using these and will chronicle my knife adventures for you in the future!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

in dreams...

so i've been having kind of weird dreams recently. weird in a random mundane sort of way. they're all kind of real, me doing everyday things or with people i know. nothing fantastic or crazy, but weird in the little details.

for instance, i realized this morning, that i've now had this part of a dream several times. it's me taking out my contact lenses and putting them in a contact case (i know, fascinating - why is this even worth writing about?), except when i'm taking them out - i take out 3 lenses every time. i see them clearly in the case. in my dream this does not strike me as odd, however as i was putting my lenses in this morning i found myself looking for the 3rd one...

not that i have any idea where it was supposed to go.


Saturday, November 28, 2009

return (v. intr.)

v. re·turned, re·turn·ing, re·turns
1. To go or come back, as to an earlier condition or place.
2. To revert in speech, thought, or practice.
3. To revert to a former owner.
To answer or respond.

a. The act or condition of going, coming, bringing, or sending back.
b. The act of bringing or sending something back to a previous place, condition, or owner.
a. Something brought or sent back.
b. returns Merchandise returned, as to a retailer by a consumer or to a wholesaler by a retailer.
c. Something that goes or comes back.
3. A recurrence, as of a periodic occasion or event: the return of spring.
4. Something exchanged for that received; repayment.
5. A reply; a response.

another day, another airport. this time jfk. and a much longer layover. but i am impressed by the ease and convenience and cleanliness of the jetBlue terminal. i highly recommend it, if you have to go through NYC - the free wireless is great.

but moving on... return, returning, returned.... i was thinking about this a lot last week, before i went home. i had been to yoga and my teacher was talking about returning to the breath. and i wanted to explore this idea a bit more. what 'return' signified versus just attending to. because one can easily notice the breath without returning to it, and likewise, many other things. it's not just noticing, there seems to be this movement inherent to the word return. what i find fascinating is that it signifies both coming and going, sending and bringing... despite the fact that i find this slightly contradictory, it implies movement. and i like that - because that means there is not this passive observation, but an active intention.

i like this.

i was originally going to write this about my return home. but i've already left home. and i guess this is a different return - one to my daily life. home was so great, and grounding. and exhausting. i love my family and friends so much. and it's such a joy to see them and be there, and suspend this other life i live by myself, without them. i wish i didn't have to sleep (even the little i did) just so i could spend more time with them. but it's bittersweet, in some ways it reminds how much i'm missing in this other life i'm in the process of returning to...

while portland certainly isn't the 'home' i will always think about, where i grew up, where my family is, and where my friends and go back to. but it is also home in another way. it's where i've chosen to make my life, and i like the city and what it offers, and i like the scenery, and my job, and my house... all these things feel right to me. but i'm still missing that closeness of people i've known for years, of family that loves me unconditionally and makes me laugh until my stomach hurts, of friends i can talk about life superficially and deeply and anywhere between, who will tell me if i'm being ridiculous and who i feel so completely at ease with. this is what i miss. and this is what makes returning home so wonderful and then returning to my other home so hard.

i guess that's it - right? there's always a balance, but not a static one - a coming and a going, a sending and a bringing.

so, thank you. for indulging my sentimentality. and thank you raychel, sarah and mike - for always making time for me and planning get together - i love you being a part of my life! thank you dida and laura for making time in your busy schedules - i know life is hectic and it's always a treat to see you even briefly. thank you amy and natalie - i know i'm always busy but i am so glad you're always there at thanksgiving (and you should definitely come visit portland). thank you muffin, for driving hours to visit and for just being you. thank you court and karen - for the meals, and the catch-up and for being amazing women doing amazing things with your lives, i am constantly inspired by you. thank you emily and grace for everything - it wouldn't be home without you. thank you tim and puma - for making my other home a place i want to go back to. and more than anything - thank you to mama and craig for being the best mother and brother i could ask for - you mean the world to me, and while i'm not home often, i have you with me always.

and now that i've sat here crying in the middle of the most amazing terminal in the jfk airport writing this possibly nonsensical emotional post, i think it's almost time to board my next plane.

love and hugs, and see ya on the west side...

Monday, November 23, 2009

she left on a monday...

sitting in the pdx airport. which actually, is pretty sweet. security is quick and there's free wi-fi everywhere. that being said, i wish my flight was at least boarding already. it's nice to be on the red-eye because i don't lose a day to travel, but... i'm usually asleep by now :P

heading back east for thanksgiving. to home. to friends. to family. i love thanksgiving. there's just something about it at my house. the smells of baking, the togetherness, it's fun and fast and i'm crazy exhausted when it's over, but i look forward to it all year. i can't wait to be up late at night baking pies with craig, going to neighbors houses to use their ovens, because the one oven in our house is never enough, the last minute grocery store run - because there is ALWAYS one, pajamas and aprons and cooking in the kitchen with mama thanksgiving morning, setting the table, placing the pies, taking the photos. and then, of course, everyone who comes over. there's just nothing else like it, and i am so ready to be home, to feel this grounding and enveloping sense of home.

i have some other thoughts i wanted to talk about - that i was reminded of in yoga this morning. but, i'm hoping we're boarding soon. so this is it for now, if i can't sleep i may very well try to get some of that into writing.

see you on the east coast :)

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

i have to admit it's getting better...

i'm finally starting to get into a rhythm at work. i have days and rooms and patients. it's getting there. slowly. but it's getting there.

it really does amaze me how much better and centered i feel not being in 3 different places. and now that work is falling into place i need to get the rest of my life there. i'd really like to start doing yoga regularly again, and maybe some taiji. but seeing as my health insurance premium went up 18%, i'm not sure that's going to happen right now (though i swear the money would be better spent on yoga, it would certainly do more for my health and wellbeing than the insurance does - as i haven't used it once in over a year...). but anyway... the healthcare situation is a whole can of worms i can't get into right now.

what else, what else? we're in november, which means it's time to talk pies for thanksgiving. am looking for some new recipes to add to the repertoire. though, i did make some pretty stellar halloween cupcakes...

if you've got any must-have pie requests, let me know... apple generally isn't my thing, but, i'm open to suggestion. (if you have never seen the tgiving pie spread, take a look at last years.... )


in other VERY exciting news... Dr. Graciela Mitchell will be gracing the land of Port with her presence next week and i, for one, cannot WAIT! yay!

next week is going to be killer.... health fair at adidas, then talk at new seasons (i should work on that...) and then frolicking with Gracie! and then it's almost time to head back east (i can't believe it's been a year since i've been home... crazy!).

and now i'm just rambling. so i'm going to call it a night. but make sure to check out my blog on cold and flu prevention over at:

Monday, October 19, 2009

all the leaves are brown...

actually. they're not at all. they're brilliantly colored reds, oranges and yellows right now. just stunning.

but that song has been running through my head for days, so i had to use it.

so, about my last post. probably any of you reading this already know, because i've talked to you, but let me explain anyway.

i've been sort of stressed out. working multiple places, feeling scattered and that my energy was so ungrounded - which is not beneficial to me or my patients, nor do i think it will help me be successful. so, i had to make a decision, to gather what is healthy and good and let go of that which doesn't serve me any longer... i decided to quit Tri-D. which was a really difficult decision for me, because i get so much out of being there that is not monetary. i love the boys, i love working out and in my head that was *exactly* the kind of place i was going to go and make my sports medicine practice.

unfortunately, it just wasn't busy, and i was spending too much time and effort and it's been about a year, and it just hasn't been going anywhere. so, i decided it had to go. but, i was worried about telling the owner, because as much as i know i needed to do it, part of me really didn't want to. however, since i have - i feel SO much better. not to mention it means i am no longer going to early morning networking...i won't even get into that.

but, seriously, it was like this weight lifted, my anxiety left, my sleep is better. it's so cliche, but true - this is what stress does to you, i guess. that being said, it's now on me to make this work 100%, no outside attributions for success or failure, this is my life and i have to make it work. which is so exciting, and i am so passionate about it, but it terrifies me too. i'm in for a lot of hard work.

i think i'm ready. let's do this!

but i want to thank all my friends and family for their support through this - i know i was such a mess - thank you for your listening, your hugs, and your love! also, thank you to tim, who is a web genius, and figured out how to make my anatomy acupuncture blog be integrated into my website. go check it out and my new post on autumn... and tell me what you think.

anyway, as i come to more of center in the next couple of weeks, with a more organized schedule i plan on having devoted time for writing, both for myself and to share. it'll be a good thing.

here's to transition...

Thursday, October 08, 2009

on autumn...

"It is a time of turning inward; a time to gather what is good, healthy, abundant and pure to our centers; a time to let go of what no longer serves us well and release what holds us back."

in the midst of gathering information for a blog post on TCM and autumn i came across the above quote. given my current life state it was some affirmation i needed. more on this later, and hopefully a full fledged post on the anatomyacupuncture site.

anyway, just thought i'd share.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

" calendar lies crumbled/laid to waste..."

It's been scrawled on, thumbed through and changed. Will this be the measure of my days? Dinners and appointments and deadlines I can't make.
-Indigo Girls "I'll Change"

i promise i haven't forgotten you. i've just been... tired. so tired. september, was a hectic month. lots of travel, lots of visitors - all of it fabulous and fun, but had me running around like a chicken with it's head cut off, and while i planned to post many times (oh, do i have photos for you!) i just never *quite* managed to find that time...

we can still be friends, right?

september began calmly enough... but all of a sudden i was heading out to montana - and you know how it is when you leave town, everyone wants to see you...lots of late appointments, lots of work to do, not to mention pack and sort out the roadtrip. finally, we left early one friday morning, and excepting my *first* speeding ticket EVER it was a wonderful journey. i think it was the fastest (not literally, thanks to officer mark o'neill) 10 hours in the car. the weather was beautiful, the scenery (except eastern WA) new and pretty and well, i guess the company wasn't half bad either. :P

how do i describe montana... the trip was amazing. outside the rugged beauty of the land, and the very accomodating weather, seeing Katrin was phenomenal. So great to catch up, to see her get married, to meet Jake... what a beautiful setting for the wedding (finley point on flathead lake!) and Kat was a stunning bride! after the wedding we hit up glacier national park for a couple days... i don't have the words to do it justice... please take a look at the photos.

back to portland on tuesday, work, clean, pack, back on the road on friday to the oregon coast. a much shorter trip (yay!) but also beautiful! had a weird, alternate universe moment - being at the beach with Matt and Jodie, but not the OBX... kind of bizarre. awesome to see them, a superfun wedding with Jake and Jackie. the setting was beautiful - the beach at sunset is hard to beat, and the reception was great! then back home on sunday, pick up Em from the airport and frolic!

then mama came the next tuesday, and alas, had to send her back home yesterday...

and somehow. it's october. i don't really know how that happened. while i am so grateful i got to see so many people in september, i'm wiped. i think i need a month to recover and regroup.

october is my get it together month. which means, i'll get it together. i'll post photos, thoughts, and possibly even be witty... you never know.

keep me honest... i'll be back in a week, tops.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

We'll take a little walk/somewhere by the trees and water

I don't mean to neglect you. Really, I don't. I've been all over the place. Trying to get sorted for the craziness that will be September. I'm excited, but, man, lots going on.

So, the website is up. and yes, I know, still missing a couple of pages. But overall, I've gotten good feedback and am very excited about that! Still working on getting the blog on the main site... but it's coming, don't you worry. And yes, that means then I have to update in 2 separate places... not sure how I'm going to handle that. But it is one of my september goals to be organized to sit down and update weekly!

what else, just got back from a quick trip to the olympic peninsula in washington. had some down time, so tim and i decided to go for a couple of nights. as befits the rainforest it was rainy on our drive... but once we got there there was just a fog that i found quite enjoyable! the spot we went to was lake quinault, which if you have a really good memory is the site of one of my favorite photos ever...

From the magical mystery tour

(seriously the best auto-timer photo ever!)

taken almost 2 years ago to the day (weird how that happened) this was a photo from a trip cheryl and i took to explore the pacific northwest and it's potential livability. who knew 2 years ago, that i'd be living here today...and even managed to find this lake again (which we happened upon briefly during our trip) and apparently it's a popular spot... but so beautiful! i really enjoyed the camping, exploring and swimming here... it's worth a visit if you're ever up in the olympic peninsula!

millions of photos, for sure... here are but a few.

funny how much happens that you can't anticipate... that trip two years ago seems like a lifetime ago, yet changed the course of my future. if we had never gone roadtripping, i don't know if i would have moved to portland...

which made me think about how 5 years ago i made the choice not to stay in NZ and come back to the states and go to acupuncture school. what if i had taken that job, gotten residency... what would life look like now? and while i sometimes kick myself for not staying... i can't say i regret where i'm at now. the people i know, the life i have.

but it's interesting to think about that alternate path and the possibilities that it had...

Monday, August 03, 2009 is on the interwebs!

so, finally, finally got the website up and running. an enormous thank you to tim for all his time and effort and technological prowess because, seriously, i couldn't have done it on my own!

anyway, please check out my site - give me feedback! i want to know!

also, many photos to come - steph came to visit, and puma is hilarious with the heat we've been having - so hopefully later this week you will get a taste of all of that :)

but for now: and if you're not already reading it- please also check out: for my updates there !


Monday, July 20, 2009

worth a thousand words

i owe you some photos.

1) of Sara's visit. of which I do not have nearly enough of the two of us, and perhaps too many of flowers. as her visit was way too short, perhaps it's fitting. but, i miss her already. heaps. it was amazing to see her here in portland, and luckily we had pretty good weather. i got to meet her cousin (+family) and spend some time with them, as well as with Sar in alberta arts (have i mentioned how tea/coffee shops are our favorite?) and as the pictures make blatantly obvious, we visited the japanese gardens (am i obsessed much?) and the rose gardens. the irises were in bloom at the japanese gardens and it was beautiful (i swear, i didn't even post half the photos i took).

2) and more recently, i did a bit of baking (it's been awhile and the weather's been hot... but there were some recipes i just had to try!) so below, food (and no, this was all for other people, it did NOT live at my house... ) however, i must say that my acquisition of a mini-cheesecake pan is perchance my most favorite thing at the moment :) . so... recipes for this deliciousness can be found at (thanks, Deb!).

Friday, July 03, 2009

happy (and happy 4th)

Sara gets into town tonight, and i am more excited than i can express to see her and catch up over this weekend! yay!

and just because i thought i'd share some recent photos of puma (i was all about the photo-shoot, but her, notsomuch). they're not great, but some are fun, especially puma making notsohappy faces because i was incessantly harassing her.... ahhhh, cats.

and then, i remembered i took some puma photos about a year ago with the nice dSLR i was trying out...

what a difference it makes, eh? sooooo much better quality.... *sigh* one day, i'll get myself one :).

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

mirror, mirror on the lake....

took a brief adventure to mirror lake yesterday. it was a beautiful day out, and the drive to the mt hood area was lovely. the hike was pretty short and it's odd to say this, but i think both tim and i were disappointed with the end result.

i think we were expecting something more grand (not that it wasn't a lovely day to be outside in nature), and i think, perhaps, we've been a bit spoiled by some of our other hikes.

anyway, mirror lake - so called - because on windless days you can get a gorgeous reflection of mt. hood. there was a slight wind and so the lake was not quite flat, but tim managed to get a few pictures with a reflection on it. other than that, we stopped and sat in the sun, enjoying the weather for a bit, and then headed home.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

sweet summer sunshine

and strawberries... seriously, they seem endless out back. and delish!

it's a gorgeous weekend here in pdx. and i got to have breakfast with the Pangs this morning, and that was a treat! I haven't seen them since I left SD, and they were on a roadtrip in a pretty pimped out RV (i think it was nicer than my house), and luckily they had time to meet for breakfast. Got them to come out to NE and we ate at The Tin Shed, one of my fave breakfast places. It's totally worth the wait on the weekend, and they even sat all 9 of us together! So great to see them, but super quick as they're on their way back down to SD after having spend a week traveling up the coast! next time, they have to spend longer in pdx and maybe drag Yuki and Emerson along :)

speaking of delish food... last night tim and i went to hang out on mississippi ave and found a cute tapas place - they had an awesome back patio area - sand, hammock chairs, fire pit, swings... and they made a damn good mojito with mango and black currant. casa naranja - i recommend it, especially on a beautiful evening, awesome hang out spot.

and because tim thinks it's all i talk about (because, well, it kind of it) i figure i would mention AGAIN how excited i am that this time next week SARA will be here! yayayayay! can't wait. 3 days isn't long enough, and she'll be spending part of that time with her cousin, but i'm selfish and want as much sar-time as i can get! hopefully the weather will continue cooperating and we can do a hike, and other than that - i suspect we'll find a tea shop and hang... yay!

the anatomy website is getting *closer* to done, i promise! soon soon!

that's all on this end, have a beautiful day!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

carry me away into the woods

(sheepish look). i know it's been a while. things have picked up at work, finally. which is a good thing. i'm doing my best to get the anatomy website up and running (look for it in the next couple of days) - writing content is a pain in the ass. but, i'm getting there.

in the meantime, what else can i tell you? i've been feeling pulled in a lot of directions. not sure where any of them will take me, so just checking out options. and it's exciting, but at the same time exhausting and i don't feel like i have the energy to put my all into every piece.

in exciting news, Sara is coming to visit in 2 weeks! i CANNOT wait! yay!!!! it's been ages since i've seen her and can't wait to spend time sitting in tea shops and catching up on life. (and ulterior motive, hoping to convince her pdx is the most fabulous place ever and she wants to live here so we can have an integrative practice together) but, you know, just catching up.

and last monday tim and i took a hike on the oregon side of the gorge called angel's rest... and here are some photos.

Monday, June 01, 2009

about time

recently i finally got my act together and registered my LLC with the Oregon Secretary of State. this means i have my own business! yay!

so, my business is registered as: anatomy acupuncture, llc.

i have my very own website (still under construction) which you should bookmark and visit often! i am going to be putting up a blog and will have regularly updated news and health information.

for now, check it out at: and worry not, i will be letting you know when it's up and running for real (and then pestering you to send it to everyone you know :P).

a big thank you to tim for being a technical genius and for putting up with my nonsense! :)

Sunday, May 31, 2009

worthwhile reading

some more reading on health care from the washington post and the new yorker. check it out if you have time.

Doctors Don't Work for You Anymore

Annals of Medicine: The Cost Conundrum:

Saturday, May 30, 2009

It'll take more than a doctor to prescribe a remedy

so. here's hoping this will be somewhat coherent, but i've got a lot of thoughts running around my head about the state of the health care system in this country and i'm going to try to put them in some sort of order. disclaimer - i am no expert, this is my personal (slightly informed) opinion - feel free to disagree.

some of what i'm thinking, i've been thinking for a long time. some of it was stirred up a bit by a rant someone in my networking group gave about the proposed change to our healthcare system - i.e. a move to nationalized health care instead of private. he was against this re-organization and made a lot of statements i didn't agree with, but a lot of people in my group did. and this is still bothering me. a lot.

the idea of universal health care appeals to me immensely on the whole, as a general concept. there is certainly more than one way of getting to this end point, lots of variations on a theme - any of which i would find preferable to the current state of affairs. currently, there are approximately 45 million people in the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA without health insurance. seriously, 45 million. and it's projected to hit 56 million in the next decade. i don't know about you, but this makes me angry, and ashamed. here we are, proposing to be the world's superpower, to be a civilized nation that brags about the "best health care in the world," and 45 MILLION people don't have insurance...which means they likely don't get the health care they need (and if they do, it's often too late and expensive and the rest of us pay for it - more on that later). so, for me, more than any of the other arguments this is the the one that gets me. it's appalling for me to think that there are people who don't care that this huge portion of our country is without basic care.

moving on. the big point that was brought up at my meeting was that if we move to a nationalized health care plan that we will still have to pay for it, and possibly pay more. he railed a bit against a single payer system saying that people who supported this didn't realize that we all would be paying for it. but the thing is, we already pay for it. we pay for private insurance, we pay hefty medical bills, we pay for the relentless paperwork and administrivia, we pay when the 45 million uninsured end up in the ER and can't pay. so yes, we would have to pay for for a single payer system - most likely in the form of taxes, but we'd all have health insurance coverage, and we'd make the system hugely more efficient. (another single payer link).

of the other points that were made against a nationalized health care plan - that you won't be able to choose the care you get (i.e. the goverment tells you what you can and can't have), that there are long wait times and that it's "just like medicare which is bankrupting this country." i don't have answers to everything, but what i can say to these points is this: that in all the nationalized/single payer (or some variation on this theme) systems that other countries have - you can still get elective surgery. yes - wait times are generally longer for this. but, what's the wait time on elective surgery for people in this country who are uninsured or underinsured... a long time, or never. so for me it's a bit of a non-argument. i don't ever think we'll be in the position where goverment will dictate what procedures you can and can't have (again, nationalized health care is not socialized medicine - the doctors are still in the private sector - they would just get paid by the government instead of your insurance company) and as it happens, half the time your insurance company dictates this anyway.

and while no system is perfect - there is certainly the possibility for change and improvement. in other countries that currently operate some sort of nationalized health care (UK, NZ, Canada) the populations report a greater satisfaction with their health care than we do here in the US. and these countries (and thereby citizens) are spending WAY less on health care than we do. and they're happier with what they get. and everyone is covered.

so along with a system like this some changes would happen in the administrative arena - clearly having a single payer simplifies things enormously. currently the amount of paper work physicians (and other health care providers) have to do to get re-imbursed is insane - not to mention if often varies from payer to payer. the administrative cost add up to some like 1/3 of all the health care costs in america - these would be dramatically reduced in a single-payer system. less time doctors have to spend on paperwork = more doctoring they can do - and that's the part they're good at. also, it is likely (and there are already proposed measures) that we would move to a electronic medical record system (EMR) which makes sharing health information much more efficient and reduces the number of redundant tests/diagnostics due to poor communication between providers. also, saves paperwork and paper (yay for the trees!). all of this makes medical records more accessible to patients and to their providers meaning care is more efficient and most likely more effective.

all this ties in with another recurring thought i've been having about health care in this country. it is SO based on reactionary care and not prevention. and i get it, prevention isn't sexy. there aren't cures, and dramatic outcomes and really, it's hard to sell. but that's because our paradigm needs to shift. and this is a whole other post... so more on that later. but with it's relation to a single payer/universal/nationalized health care system - think about it. if you have access to health care, if we ALL have access to health care - aren't we more likely to participate in prevention; to take care of ourselves because we have the resources; to stop injuries/illnesses from escalating because we can get care instead of leaving it til too late? all these things make us healthier, not only as individuals but as communities and society. if we're all taking preventative care, then we're all much less likely to get sick, and get someone else sick... it just makes so much sense. and all of this means it is SO much more cost effective...

it's a bit of a no-brainer to me. and as i said, it's not perfect, nothing is. but it is BETTER than having 45 million people uninsured and countless others under-insured. we can do better than that. we really can.

here are a couple of links to a blog (that has a lot more research and coherent writing than mine) looking much more in depth at health care costs in the US and what the systems look like in other countries (also, check out his other posts on health care systems in France, Germany, the Netherlands and Australia).

your thoughts?

Monday, May 18, 2009

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


so, while i realized that i love yoga, i didn't realize how much i missed having yoga in my life! i went to a yoga class last night for the first time in ages...probably a year. it felt so good! especially after training earlier in the day. and it just reminded me how important taking time for myself is, and that, personally, i do need the balance that yoga and meditation bring to my life.

finding that place is hard for me, because at the end of the day, i want to go home and eat dinner and hang out with tim and puma, but despite getting home late, it was a very good use of my time and i felt really good for it, even though i'd been up since 5.30am. so, a new goal of mine is to try and make AT LEAST one yoga class a week, though i'd like it to be more...we'll get there.

on another note of taking the time and doing things for myself - tim and i went on a 24 hour excursion to silver falls state park (about an hour and a half away), we left on sunday afternoon after i finished work and got in, stayed in a little cabin and spent most of the evening sitting on the porch listening to the rain fall. it was AWESOME. we got up the next morning and explored the state park - we followed the canyon trail, or the trail of ten falls and walked all along the park. the walk itself wasn't difficult, but the scenery was beyond gorgeous and so knowing me and my photo-happy self it took ages. i also can't wait to go back another time with a better camera. we were lucky in that the weather called for rain, but it only did a little in the morning and then mostly cleared up. the temperature was perfect for hiking in, and everything was glowing and green! next time we go (and we will, though maybe not in the summer as it gets crazy busy over there) there are some other trails i'd love to check out.

anyway, here are your photos!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

they say it's your birthday...

april has FLOWN by, i don't even know where to start (is it bad that mostly that's because i'm not sure i remember? ha). but, seriously, i can't believe that we're heading into may shortly, that i've lived in portland for just about 7 months... it amazes me.

most recently we have had absolutely phenomenal weather, sunny and clear - we had a couple days of 80+ degree weather, and the city just came alive! lucky for tim, it was over his birthday so we managed to spend a bit of time in the outdoors and celebrate! we hung out in alberta, explored kelly point park, wandered around downtown and most notably kayaked on the willamette! it couldn't have been a more perfect day for kayaking, sunny and warm, not too much river traffic, a private tour with an awesome guide (thanks jeff!). i LOVE being on the water, and it was such a different perspective, seeing the city from the river instead of the river from the city. all those bridges i love, i got to see from gave me flashbacks to crew and rowing under key bridge (and how i always wished i had my camera). anyway, see below for a few photos of birthday activities!

in addition we also went to see christopher guest, michael mckean, and harry shearer (of spinal tap, best in show, a mighty wind - fame) as they stopped in portland on their tour - and it was hilarious, lots of laughs, i would recommend going to see them if you can!

Monday, April 06, 2009

here comes the sun

as promised... photos from last week's adventure on the coast... we headed out to Astoria, it was a bit overcast, but still beautiful. Astoria, as any child of the 80's knows, is home to the Goonies. It was a trip being there and seeing it... and if you don't know, Astoria is the northernmost coastal town in OR. After Astoria we headed down to Warrenton, where there is an old British ship that is in ruins on the beach...and then out to clatsop spit where the Columbia river meets the Pacific ocean. beautiful!

and here, since i am clearly in withdrawl from cherry blossoms, it was a gorgeous day - so tim and i went out to the willamette and did some hanging out in the waterfront park

Sunday, April 05, 2009

they were nothing more than people, by themselves...

Even paired, any pairing, they would have been nothing more that people by themselves. But all together, they become the heart and the muscles and mind of something perilous and new, something strange and growing and great. Together, all together, they are the instruments of change.
-Keri Hulme, "The Bone People"

Currently I am sitting at the OAAOM (Oregon Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) Conference. and it's interesting as this is Oregon's new professional organization - they have had some reorganization in the past year and combined to previously existing organizations into this one. So, their theme is unification with this whole phoenix rising imagery. and at the membership meeting yesterday we were talking about the history of Acupuncture in Oregon and how it has progressed - and lots of current legislative issues that affect the practice of medicine and acupuncture here in Oregon. and what was interesting to me (being a bit of an outsider at this point, having no history of being a practitioner nor being an Oregon resident) was just the re-iteration by many of the speakers of how as a profession we have to join together, to get ourselves to the table for discussion let alone to be heard. and i think it's promising. there's a lot going on in the world right now, in our country - in healthcare - and there's a lot of change. On the board this morning was a quote from Barack Obama "Change will not come if we wait for some other time. We are the ones we 've been waiting for, we are the change that we seek" which, of course is more than reminiscent of Ghandi's "be the change you wish to see in the world" but also reminded me very much of that quote above by Keri Hulme...

anyway, just my thought of the morning... back to treatment of Hep C. and later, photos from our trip to the coast last weekend...

Saturday, March 21, 2009

that would be ecstasy/you and me...


i'm a happy girl. :) and how could i not be? i've had a lovely last few weeks; i had a chill but lovely birthday... tim so kindly made me delicious lamb chops, heard from lots of friends and family (thank you all, it's been busy and i apologize for not getting back to you), mama came to visit and we had a great time, work has been going well... and well, i *just* received my awesome birthday gift from tim...

she's so pretty... i think i'm in love <3!

thank you, tim (not that you haven't heard it already). but i *love* my mixer! as fate would have it - i started a detox the day the mixer arrived, but worry not - it has absolutely NOT stopped me from using it, just from eating the results! yay! mixer!

other than that - it's starting to be spring for real now, the weather is warming up, the flowers are coming out, and we went hiking (well, sort of)... today, at beacon rock on the washington side of the columbia river gorge...

this was a neat little walk, it was built by two people over a two year period in the early 1900s...crazy! but awesome views, even in the drizzle :)

Monday, March 02, 2009

And February was so long that it lasted into March...

...And found us walking a path alone together.
You stopped and pointed and you said, "Thats a crocus,"

i think it might *actually* be spring! walking around today, there ARE crocuses (croci?) and shoots that will soon become daffodils and irises! *contented sigh* i heart spring, it has been years since i've gotten to experience it. love it! and (i know i know i know i know) i've been a bad girl. february was... well, not spent at my computer. long stories short: moving, visiting SD, moving tim, stuck in snow, moving in, getting internet, working lots and here we are in march!

oh. you actually wanted details? hmmmm. well, i moved to a new place still in NE, but a little closer to town and walking distance to the Alberta arts area. I am absolutely loving both the house and location. here are a few pix of move-in, before the arrival of tim and furniture.

went down to SD for a couple of days, got to see lots of my very much missed friends. it was wonderful, thank you everyone for taking the time to see me and catch up! it was WAYYYYY too short, and i'm sorry i didn't have more time. but i miss and love you all heaps, and can't wait for you to visit pdx!

then tim and i drove (for the 2nd time in 6 months) from SD to PDX. however, this time we did not take the scenic tour, but headed straight up on 5N. we did have a bit of snow adventure, and were 'stuck' in Mt Shasta for a day with a bunch of snow. see following evidence:

and that's it for now, kids... more post-move-in, and mom visit after next week!

Friday, January 30, 2009

i teeter between tired/and really, really tired/ i'm wiped out and wired/ but i guess thats just as well

(thanks ani, couldn't say it any better.)

wiped out and wired. what i am dreaming of is a long HOT bath, a bottle of white wine, and a really comfortable bed. (ahhhh, sorry to disappoint any of you who might think my fantasies were anything but pedestrian.) i'm sitting here, on my thai mat on the floor (aka my bed) and thinking that sleep could possibly be the greatest drug in the world, if only i could get a fix.

lacking any of the above (bath, wine, bed or sleep) i figured i'd write. or type and see if it passes as writing. so, despite my previous promise to write more about things other than my own internal drama (as, i do in fact think about more global topics) tonight, you'll have to indulge me as re-process some thoughts and conversations i've had this past week.

had a really long talk with em the other day (thank you my love, you ARE my soul mate, i'd be lost without you in my life). as per usual we talk a lot about nothing, and somehow i got to talking about how i've been here just about 5 months now, and i have no friends here. sure, i have people i do things with occasionally (trivia, game night) but, i'd be hard-pressed to actually say any of them are really *my* friends. friends by proxy perhaps... and this is not to say i don't enjoy their company, i absolutely do. but, i would be hard pressed to say i felt comfortable calling any of them up to go for a hike or grab some tea and chat...etc. and i know, i know this stuff takes time, (way more than 5 months time), but it brought me to the question of HOW exactly does one make friends? no, really. it's a serious question (and i would appreciate any advice on the matter) - when you're not in school, and you live in a new place, how do you make friends? so, there's work. which is good, i LOVE the people i work with, but it's work, and while i wouldn't mind hanging with them in a non-work context, they have families and lives and yeah... i don't know. and then, well, that's really all i do. and i am hoping in a couple of months when work gets more stable, i will have time to commit to volunteering somewhere, taking yoga classes or cooking classes, etc... but, right now. notsomuch.

and as far as the work thing goes, had a short talk with brad (owner of tri-d) today - he was asking me how things were going and i said they were going well, slowly, but getting there. and that i really love working there and hope to make it worth their while, i hope it turns out to be a good thing for them too, and that's been my recent frustration - i feel kind of inadequate, that i'm not making good enough numbers, etc. he said that both he and michael (my supervisor) were really happy i was there, and they thought i was doing a great job, and just to keep it up and things would happen. (did i mention i love where i work?)

and, on another note... i'm moving tomorrow. (perhaps why i can't sleep). i'm all packed and totally ready to move. am meeting the landlord at 10 to trade lease +rent for keys, and then i am hoping i can get everything moved tomorrow and sorted as i work sunday morning and have been told by bjorn i am expected at anke and marcel's superbowl shindig. that being said, i will do my best to take photos (of the empty place) and post shortly but not sure when the internet will be connected, so i may be MIA for a few days...

and before signing off... a quick shoutout to some of the most wonderful aquarius ladies in my life: ems, nancy, barbara... happiest happy birthdays, i hope you are celebrating your fabulous selves, as i celebrate each of you in my life! MWAH!

Monday, January 19, 2009

the future's in the air/i can feel it everywhere/ blowing with the wind of change

i wish i had something to say about this historic moment in the history of this nation. but i'm finding my words, let alone my thoughts, to be inadequate. at the moment i'm content to be an observer, to be a witness, without explanation or discourse.

speaking of wind though. i went hiking on saturday as it's been beautiful and sunny up here in oregon. so, i decided to hit the columbia river gorge in the sunshine (as previous pictures can attest to it's often in cloud). this time i decided to mix it up and head over to the washington side of the gorge. found a great hike, but didn't make it far because much of the track was exposed and right on the river and the winds were CRAZY. i took a couple photos before i backtracked and found a different, slightly more sheltered hike nearby.

(i'm pretty sure i took these all with my eyes closed, because the wind was too strong)

the columbia river in the sunshine!
(apologies for blur, but closed eyes and unsteady hand in the wind...)

so after that, i retreated and found another nearby hike (which can actually join up with this one if on future occasions i am up to the wind tunnel that is the gorge). lots of winter (i.e. bare) tree action. but blue skies and some pretty views...

(oh and T- 13 days til i move...)

Friday, January 16, 2009

and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms...

i cannot believe it's the middle of january.

i'm not sure when that happened. also, it's been BEAUTIFUL here, sunny and clear. apparently this is one freak-show of a winter for portland. but, i'm not complaining!

so far the new year has been continuing on pretty well. work is going, slowly, but going. been trying to do a lot of this networking business, which is not really my style, but needs to be done. though, in regards to that - i got rejected from a networking group, HA! i am totally amused.

been doing a lot of thinking lately, and not nearly enough writing. there are some things i'd like to write about regarding health care and various paradigms, but i haven't managed to sit down and do it. i've been feeling like my brain has all these thoughts but i am somehow unable to put them together as a cohesive whole. but, writing more on broader topics than what i do in my day is a goal of mine for the coming months. however, for now, you're stuck with this.

the middle of january means i move in two weeks. and while i don't have that much stuff, and there's a lot still in boxes, somehow the thought is still overwhelming to me. i cannot wait to be in my new place and simultaneously am dreading the actual process of moving (didn't i just do this?). however, it will be nice to fully unpack and settle a bit. but, that probably doesn't happen for real til tim and i get back from SD.

am SO excited to visit san diego and see all my friends. (i'm living in serious friend xu right now!) am feeling slightly guilty that it is under the auspices of helping tim pack and move, but more than likely will end up being mostly a social event as i have many people to catch up with (sorry tim!). while excited, i am slightly exhausted from thinking about my social schedule already...hehehe.

got to catch up with with emily and sara in the past 24 hours, and talked lots. (i love you ladies more than words) a lot about how there are just so many questions we don't have the answers for. and don't know if anyone does. however, i think the asking of them is still important. but sometimes the preponderance of questions is disconcerting and ungrounding and the ability to let go into that space of being comfortable with uncertainty is extremely difficult. it is such a reflex to reach out and try and grab a hold of some bit of a notion that we convince ourselves of as being an answer. it's so easy to long for something finite and for reassurance and so hard to sit with the ever expanding body of not-knowing and not feel completely lost. during this discussion sara reminded me of one of my very favorite quotes with which i shall leave you:

"...have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and to try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don't search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer..."

- Ranier Maria Rilke

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Year's End neither an end nor a beginning but a going on,
with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us.
-Hal Borland

this time of year is meant for reflection, is it not? so... on my day off, some reflection you shall get. i don't promise deep or meaningful, or even particularly insightful for that matter - but here goes...

it's funny, i started this particular blog just about a year ago, last january and while i think i'd use some of the adjectives to describe my life currently, somehow they've taken on a slightly different flavor. i was in my last term of school 3 months away from completion of a four year degree. re-reading some of those earlier entries, i couldn't believe where i was - it was surreal, an ending of something that felt endless. and there was excitement and of course anxiety about what was to come. i couldn't wait to finish school, to start the next phase of life, but i was scared about boards, about my competance, about if i would have what it took to have a practice, about finances, about moving... but all these things were still abstract, intangible, and i was unable to hold them concretely and so felt a bit like i was falling.

and here i am, about a year later. i have since graduated. passed boards. moved to portland. became licensed. started a practice. so in some ways, much of what i was anticipating has come to pass, and all with remarkable fluidity. i've been here in portland for four months, and sometimes i can't believe it's been that long, but for the most part it makes me stop and think "really? that's it?" somehow in the short four months i've been here i feel so much more that i belong, more than i ever did my four years in san diego. and maybe some of that was self-fulfilling prophecy, that i thought moving out to san diego, it would never be for me. but honestly, there's such a different feeling here, a different qi - and i really like it. and while life looks entirely different than it did a year ago (i made it here! i have a practice! i love portland!) i think my 2 favorite adjectives to describe my life are still excited and slightly terrified.

i haven't for a second regretted my decision to move, on the contrary - most everyday there is something that makes me smile, and feel so glad i'm here. i think i was stuck in SD, somehow it was stagnant for me, and here there's free flow - there's a coursing energy that permeates everything, and the rain that continually washes the city clean, keeps everything flowing. and GREEN. *sigh* it makes me smile just writing that. i miss my friends terribly, and have certainly had hard days and weeks... before i found my current jobs. earlier this week... some days i acutely feel the loss of not having people i know locally. and i know, i KNOW this stuff takes time, and while i am aware of this - some days it just hits hard.

currently my excitement is over work - i LOVE what i do, everyday. i really and truly do! and absolutely adore all my colleagues at Tri-D, they are just awesome, and i can't be grateful enough to have a place like that to work. not to mention, work out... have been training with Mox, and it's been great! aside from that stuff, am super excited about moving to my own place next month... (i signed papers today!!!) it's in a great location, lots of space, my own kitchen! YAY! and i guess, really i should qualify that - it's not really my OWN place, as tim is moving up and it will be his place too (and clearly, actually, it's really Puma's) and i am very excited about that part of it too!

and then there's the terrified... about making work, "work". building a practice is HARD, and that's fine, but i worry about being good enough, about knowing what i am doing, about getting enough patients... i worry about making friends, finding community... i worry about living with tim - if he'll like the place i picked, if we'll live together well... i worry about paying off loans and making my finances work.

so, it's just funny to me, to be in such a different place, yet in some ways a wholly similar one. that being said, i do feel much more grounded and stable than i have in a long time, and think that upon moving next month, will feel even more so.

and hal borland is right, year's end is neither an ending nor a beginning, but a going on. new year's does not mark some distinct time segment, isolating one year from the last - it just marks the going on of time. and while that means there is no "starting over" (and i know this may come as a big disappointment to some people), the slate doesn't magically wipe clean, we're not all brand new people each year (thankfully!) but it is a going on, and what makes that special is that like mr. borland says - we have all the wisdom that the past year's experience has given us. and it is our choice how to use that. none of us are the same people we were 12 months ago, or for that matter a day ago (an interesting link here to TCM theory, but that's another post) but as we often use this time for reflection - let us look back at our experiences and figure out how to use that wisdom to our benefit in the coming keep learning (especially about ourselves) and growing, and not starting over with nothing, but continuing to the shape the person we are into who we want to be.

and that, my friends, is a post that is more than long enough. my best wishes for the coming year to you all - may it be happy, healthy, prosperous and full of laughter and love!