safety. secure.

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i never run alone at night. i make my husband walk me to my car in the morning because it’s dark thanks to daylight savings time.  maybe i’m a chicken.  maybe i’m still paranoid that whoever broke into our house is still lurking.  who knows…

not that david is this the hulk or anything, but i feel safe when i am with him.  i’ll go anywhere and everywhere when he is by my side.  i feel safe. i feel secure. i feel strong enough to do anything i want… i felt the same way growing up with my dad around.  nothing can happen to me if either of those two people are by my side.

i feel a little guilty for saying this and i know that i am supposed to, and trust me i am working on it, but i wish i felt that same way when i think about God and Jesus.  i know that God never leaves me and has a great plan for me.  i know that i am on this earth to glorify Him and to bring people to His kingdom.   but today i feel a little lost and i guess that’s ok.  it has to be a part of life i am assuming.  how much more strength, how much more safety and security come from the Father of Lights, our Creator, our Heavenly Father. i am working on my faith. i am working on my trust. good thing He never gives up on me.

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Found this picture here.

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“what will it bee”

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david and i had the honor of hosting our beautiful and sweet friends’ baby gender reveal party at our home. the theme of the day was “what will it bee” so we had a sweet yellow, gray, burlap and bee vibe all throughout the house.

we (david and his guy friends) have been working on our yard for the last month so that we could host this party. we invited a little over 30 people so it was imperative that our outdoor space was usable.

unfortunately, of all days… the weekend of the party the forecast predicted los angeles’ biggest storm in 2 years… go figure… luckily we have the coolest friends on the planet so they didn’t mind squeezing into our house, kitchen and bedroom…

to reveal the baby’s gender, hannah and jesus bought a pinata in the shape of a bee hive and filled it with either pink or blue candy. we all gathered around outside when the rain let up for all of three minutes and a few of us got a shot at hitting the thing down! our friend val was the lucky winner who beat the bee hive to reveal that the diaz family are welcoming a baby GIRL into the world.

i don’t know about everyone else, but i was overcome with so much emotion i started crying… i love the diaz family so much and i know that they are going to make such good parents.

it was such a fun time to celebrate with everyone. it’s always a good day when we all get together. it truly brings joy to my heart to have a house full of some of the people i love so much.

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Picture Credit: Brian Carter of Pixelthatphotos

20140301_151551(0)the parents to beeeeeeeee

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we totally went diy and pinterest crazy for the party… how could we not?

overall, it was a beautiful day… i cannot wait to meet that sweet little angel!

Keep Going

because i write my blog and i blog for both cancer centers i work at, i am always reading articles related to cancer… whether it’s tips on how to live a healthy life, stories where people have over come the disease… stories where people have passed away… each one resonates with our story.

this article on huffington post really spoke to my heart.

i often well not often, or maybe often… either way, i struggle with such a deep sadness and a longing for krystle. i struggle with guilt and sadness which I wrote about on monday here

but this article gave me some hope.

One line in the article that nancy sharp said that i hold onto dearly is this:

“Among all the lessons borne from losing my husband to cancer, the one I see clearest is this: The best way to memorialize a loved one is to choose life.”

the best thing we can do is live.

and not only do i want to just live, but i want to celebrate all of life!

a little guilt or is it sadness?

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more times than not i feel a little guilty/sad for “moving on.”  for example, i have this cute picture of david and i that i thought i would use for my profile picture for facebook… but i felt too guilty/sad to change it because my last picture was from krystle’s first transplant birthday. i don’t want her to think that i’ve moved on or forgotten about her.  i always make sure that her name is at the top of my search list on instagram… i cried a little because my phone reset and changed all of my speed dials which took her number away.  they change the date for the eagle rock relay for life to a date where i’ll be out of town.  a little more guilt/sadness. sometimes when i feel happy i get a little sad because i don’t want to be too happy..

as if all of this sadness or guilt can change anything.  i need to remember that she is in a better place and probably not giving two cares about what’s going on on earth because she is celebrating in heaven… 

i’m still trying to figure out a healthy balance for myself because i miss her so much and i want to honor her in the best and healthiest way possible.  

Thankful Thursday

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i am going to do this entry a little different because i want to talk about one thing in particular…

i am thankful that i have the privilege of honoring my sister krystle in ways that i know would bring joy to her heart. krystle was very passionate about the national bone marrow registry, as known as, be the match.

when she was first diagnosed she needed a life saving bone marrow donor… but because we are half filipino and half mexican, the chances of her finding a match were one in a million. there was no existing match on the registry so our family rallied together and set out to find that match. with the help of the sweet folks at the be the match group at city of hope, we hosted drives all over california at places like the dream center, aniche boutique, and a couple in las vegas thanks to my aunty denise who herself is a survivor! it was beautiful to see how many people got involved and how much joy it brought krystle to know that and see how many people truly cared. from the different drives we hosted i believe either 5 or 6 people found their life saving bone marrow match… krystle’s sweet life lives on.

now i have the honor of giving back to the folks at be the match and honor krystle at the same time. me and a sweet group of friends are running the oc half marathon and we joined the team at be the match to honor and raise funds for those who are looking for a match.

the second thing we’re doing is the relay for life!!

i have to keep reminding myself to celebrate life! i get so sad sometimes because i miss her so bad.. i don’t want to do much either at times, but i know that’s not what she would want.

so we celebrate! and we honor her!

transformation tuesday

tuesday is probably one of the most inspiring days to go on instagram, especially when i’m dieting or trying to lose “3 pounds.” i absolutely love seeing people getting fit and sharing their before and after pictures! it takes so much time, energy, commitment and dedication oh and patience to wait for results… but wow oh wow those results are just amazing.

my transformation tuesday is a little different. my transformation tuesday is a transformation of our living space. our home. i talk about it every now and then but we had a house fire last may. it completely brought down a room and a storage unit that we had.

around midnight we heard two loud popping noises, we didn’t think anything of it, we thought it was the wind knocking something over or something. we heard another pop and this time our puppy penelope got up and started barking like a crazy! she would not relent. David got up and let her outside and she ran straight to the room where the fire was. david saw smoke coming out of the window and yelled for me to get the water hose. the second he put water on it, it exploded. he ran in, got my baby sister who was staying with us at the time, got penelope and we all ran to the street. the flames were about 3 stories high and all we could do was watch and cry. a bunch of neighbors came outside and we all just watched in bewilderment. our house is tucked away so you can’t exactly see if from the street, so we couldn’t tell what all was burning. we live seconds from a fire station and the responded in no time. i think it took them about 21 minutes to contain the fire and they were able to spare a lot of our home. my dad lost every single thing he owned. we lost a lot of things from the wedding.. jackets.. shoes… just things… it’s a miracle the fire didn’t spread. the fire was so close to getting more of our home and our neighbors as well. it could have/ should have been worse, but we were spared.

the fire kept us out of our home for 7 months. we stayed with my awesome in-laws and my dad stayed with krystle.

we were fortunate enough to have good home owners insurance which covered almost an entire remodel of the house and funds to replace all of the smoke damaged furniture. we now practically have a brand new home.

in the moment, i couldn’t see how we were going to get out of that particular mess. i didn’t know what we were going to do. how we would recover. but today i am so filled with joy to report that God gave us beauty for ashes. he turned a terrible situation into something so beautiful. so much better than what we would have had. it’s truly amazing. i almost feel silly for forgetting about how faithful God is, even when we don’t see it for ourselves.

i say this all the time, but david and i have the best friends in the whole world. friends who gave us 5 weekends of blood sweat and tears to fix up our yard. take a look at the pictures below.house after the fire

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celebrate my city- downtown los angeles fashion district

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one of my nearest and dearest friends is having a sweet little baby and her and her husband asked if we could host her gender reveal at our humble abode… boy did I absolutely jump on that!!! I absolutely love celebrating life, especially new little lives being brought into he world by some pretty awesome humans! not only that, but i love party planning and all of the little details that come along with it!

so the theme of the party is “what will it bee” with lots of pale yellows, grays, burlap, vintage bees, and everything totally fabulous and DIY. so we started on pinterest to get some ideas… i also like to go to the downtown fabric district, particularly into Michael Levines to get inspired. they have such gorgeous fabrics, you can literally find anything you need from dozens of different mustache prints, to disney, to vintage tea pots… literally it is fabric heaven. they also have an outlet store across the street where they sell left over pieces for 2.50 a pound. we scored some awesome deals and walked away with enough fabric to make our decorative flags.

after michael levine’s we walked around and scored some burlap and muslin for 2.50 a yard! we’re going to use that for our table cloths.

i was getting antsy and wanted to buy something for myself so that i could start a new sewing project so i bought some faux fur to make a vest. so random, but the fur looked so soft. we’ll see how that goes!

being on a time crunch, we didn’t get to walk around and see much else, but boy could you spend hours and hours down there! if you’re ever feeling like you need some inspiration or you want to get your creative wheels turning. hopefully these pictures can inspire you too!

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thankful thursday.. oops today is friday

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i didn’t post last week because i was having such a tough day/week. not a good excuse because there is always room for being thankful, but at least it’s an honest one.

on being thankful…

1. i am thankful for meaningful conversations that always seem to happen at the right time when they are needed the most. i had such an awesome conversation with my boss at work and we were talking about the soul, our loved ones who have gone on to heaven… it was beautiful

2. i had my very first dream about krystle. it was a simple dream. i ran into her outside of a grocery store and she was walking out with a tray of fried chicken and she was late for work. i told her to hurry up because she was going to be late… she was wearing the wig she wore for me and david’s wedding and she looked so beautiful. i won’t go into too much detail, but i was happy to have finally had a dream about her.

3. hubby. hubby. hubby. he is the absolute best. ’nuff said. hehe

4. i am thankful for sleepovers with my two younger sisters. david, penelope and i had a sleep over with my two babes and as always… it was a sweet time. i feel close to krystle when i’m around them. we really love our kitty.

5. i’m thankful for time with my grandma and my dad. last thursday we went to a local mexican restaurant and had some menudo mmmmmmm… i ate off of their bowls and ordered a garlic shrimp salad… we sat and chatted about life… such a cool time together. i’m taking ma to “el centro” which is what she calls downtown los angeles, on friday. she’s helping guide me in my sewing along with my dear friend Kate! which reminds me that i need to have her over for a sewing class.

6. i’m so thankful that david and i found another show to entertain us until white collar comes back… dunnnnnnnn dunnnnnnnnnn dunnnnnnnnnnn… we started watching house of cards thanks to the bestie alyssa. i saw her post about it on facebook and thought i’d give it a try… all the hype was right annnnnd now we’re hooked…

7. i’m so thnakful for my sweet family. they are so loving and so helpful. AND they don’t even get on my nerves too much… hopefully the feeling is mutual hehe

8. i’m thankful for a job where i can work with people and guide them through their cancer treatment

9. i’m thankful for fridays because that means the weekend is here!

10. i am very thankful for God who never gives up on me. ever. even when i am feeling down in the dumps and unmotivated to do anything.

i am really hoping that 2014 will bring new doors for me to walk through. i love entering into the gates with thanksgiving. i always feel such joy after i write these ten things down. try it for yourself. it could help!

celebrate life- art therapy

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i absolutely love my job. i get to walk alongside cancer patients as they get their radiation treatment. they trust us enough to care for their health, it truly is an honor. i don’t take that lightly for one second. having gone through the whole process with krystle, although i’ve never been the patient, i know what it’s like sitting in a dingy waiting room. waiting for results. making calls and leaving messages that are still probably sitting in a voice mailbox somewhere. addressing the human side of treatment was/is so important. being able to get your mind off of the fear and anxiety that loom in your brain all day is a treat, and that is what doing art is. it is healing to the soul. we have machines and medications that can help with your treatment, and we also try to take care of your soul… it’s so much more than glue, magazine cut outs and canvases.

it was healing to my soul too. i felt closer to my sister. krys and i would sit in her room and just do art together. we wrote in our journals, painted birds, painted ceramic pigs…. colored in coloring books. i miss it. i miss her. a whole lot. but it was nice being able to share that with others. one of the patients who came said she wished that she did this while she was getting chemo and that she was going to share it with her friend who was recently diagnosed. krystle’s legacy lives on.

Art therapy with cancer patients at my work.

Art therapy with cancer patients at my work.

Art Therapy

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