Smile #147 – No Mom & Afraid?!

Bight and early on June 1st, I dropped Mom and Lil Sis for their grand return to Hong Kong.  This is their first time visiting since immigrating to the US in the early 2000s.  How I would love to join and take an extended vacation to Hong Kong!  So much to see, but never enough time!  🙂

With those two away, the remaining souls (AKA Dad and I) left at home are left to fend for ourselves for the 30 days period.  Can we survive!?  NO MOM AND AFRAID!

This would be a perfect time to learn how to cook, how to clean, how to be a proper ‘housewife’.  HAHAHA!  Of course… I did not do that.  Instead, I spent this time reliving my college life.  Except this time, I get a whole house to myself instead of sharing a dorm room.  🙂

Hello Hot Pockets, Hello Bagel Bites, Hello Taco Bell, Chickfila, and Panera Bread.  Over the course of last month, I have successfully gone through 4 pounds of strawberries and 2 bags of oranges!  I have finished 3 boxes of cereal and a gallon of milk.  I may have finished a bag of those delicious Brussel Cookies all by myself too.

I may play adulting and participate in the working world, but really, I am just a college kid playing the Game of Life.  Junk food over cooking any day! 🙂

Over the course of last intensive 30 days, I have gone through interesting emotional and physical transformation. (hehe, adulting takes hard work!)  My primitive survival rating …. probably stayed the same… cooking – 1, Leigha – 0.

Regardless I proved that I can survive, No Mom and Afraid!



Smile #146 – Surprise in Cereal

Gone are those days when toys are included in the each box of cereal.  Finding the little toy at the bottom of the bag was better than winning the lottery.  100% win, just unsure of when.

Since Mom is away, my diet consists a large portion of cereal.  When I stopped by Target to pick up a few boxes (I may eat cereal each night, at least I have a variety!), it was a surprise to see Cheerios is including a little toy from the new movie – The Secret Life of Pets – in each box.

Look at my new toy!  🙂

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Smile #145 – Say Yes to I Do Crew

As soon as Bubble popped the question, the first order of wedding planning is how many girls can I invite to be in my lady crew.  I wanted everyone standing up there with me. But Bubble said to hold my horses.  After a tough negotiation, we set the magic number to four.  How do I pick only four?!

Let me present to you, the four queens of my I Do Crew!  🙂

Lil sis will be taking on the role of Maid of Honor.  EC, JB and SC are the bridesmaids.

Couldn’t imagine anyone else better suited for this role!  🙂

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Smile #144 – Nice to Meet You, British Columbia, Canada! [Part IV]

Nice to Meet You, British Columbia, Canada! [Part IV] 

In the blink of an eye, our adventure in Canada has reached the end.  After we waved goodbyes to Ayo’s Sis and little Ash and said see you later to Ayo’s Mom. (I’ll be seeing her at the wedding next year.), we piled our luggage in the trunk and headed on the road.  There were still a few places left on our Vancouver 101 crash course we need to check off today.  Ayo has planned the route and calculated the time meticulously to ensure we won’t miss our flight home.

Long distance drives are not my strong suit.  It is almost a guarantee that I will pass out within a few minutes of a drive and miraculously wake up just in time for the GPS’s ‘You have arrived at your destination’ announcement.  Oh no, not this time!  I was fully alert, thanks to the stunning panoramic view of the blue coast along the Sea-to-Sky highway.  This famous highway is voted as one of the world’s most spectacular seaside drives.  Every bend offers a new view that is just breathtaking!  It was challenging to take photo traveling north since we are on the opposite lane, however, we surely made up for that on our way down.

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En route to Whistler, we passed by road signs translated in both English and Squeamish (Skwxwu7mesh)!  That is some intense spelling!  What sounds does 7 make?!

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Whistler is well known as a winter playground – after all it did host the winter Olympics and it is rated as the number one ski resort town in North America – but the town is bustling with summer vacationers.   We took a stroll down Whistler Village.  The stone walkways and quaint architectures felt familiar;  it shares a striking resemblance to European Old Town.  This compact village is lively with mountain bikers racing down the sandy slope and zipliner flying across forested valleys.  Of course, plenty of people-watching from the patio as well.  We speed through each of the villages and were halted by a sign that advertised 95 cents tacos.  WHAT?!  That is an attractive offer we couldn’t pass up.  Our schedule might be tight, but there is always time for tacos!

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Time to bolted down the mountain to our next destination – Capilano Suspension Bridge Park.  I learned of this place from a coworker.  She had recommended this place as a must see landmark.  The Capilano Suspension bridge stretches 450 feet across and 230 feet above the Capilano River.  That is about four full sized Tyrannosaurus Rex stacked up from the river.  (I didn’t make it up, I learned it from a sign.)  I love the higher perspective!  The bridge actually swayed with each step making the crossing even more fun!

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On the other side of the bridge, we entered the Living Forest.  During our stroll through the rainforest, we saw trees that are over a thousand years old and rocks that has gone through a century of erosion. It is a neat learning tour!  From there, we went through the Treetops Adventure.  Started from the tree house, a series of smaller suspension bridges connected us from trees to tree. If I was a squirrel, running between these bridge would be epic!

The excitement doesn’t end there.  We made our ways to the Cliffwalk.  A wooden walkways suspended from the granite cliff.  It is not the faint of hearted and I loved it!  It is a bit insane how this circular bridge is support by anchor points.  The view from here was awe-inspiring!  For a even more thrilling experience, we walked out on the glass platform.  The forest stood still right under our feet.

We completed all the attractions and even got a certificate to prove it!  🙂

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We arrived at the airport with enough time to eat the most famous Canadian dish, Poutine.  It is made with french fries and cheese curds topped with brown gravy.  It is a bit salty but unique combination.

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And this has concluded our reunion.  Ayo, VP and I hugged goodbye and can’t wait next time!  🙂


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Smile #143 – Nice to Meet You, British Columbia, Canada! [Part III]

Nice to Meet You, British Columbia, Canada!  [Part III] 

At half past nine, the room remained grim. Outside the window, a thick layer of grey cloud covered the sky with a light drizzle.  It was hardly the weather we hoped for.  We blamed VP, obviously she didn’t do a good job at her rain dance (AKA random knee-jerk movements in her sleep).  Today is just going to be what Canadian calls, a liquid sunshine kinda day!

The morning started with a bit of a fiasco.

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Meet Abby, Ayo’s high energy dog.  She is pretty clever.  She knows how to wrap herself with a blanket.  But do not underestimate her sweet face, she has a mean side too!  At breakfast, Ayo sat on the porch to give Abby a bit of TLC.  VP joined with a sandwich in her hand.  Abby was very excited… to see the sandwich. Bread is Abby’s favorite food.  VP turned away to avoid Abby snatching it and Abby seek revenge and took a bite on VP’s leg!  What is crazier is VP’s jeans did not rip, but there is a clear teeth mark on her leg. That is some durable jeans!

Nestled between magnificent mountains and the sandy beach is Harrison Lake.  This small resort town is known for its geothermal hot springs.  The view reminded me quite a bit of the pristine Interlaken, Switzerland.  The serene landscape was interrupted by the bright neon colored inflatables set up in front of the Hot Springs Resort & Spa.  It is an obstacle course with slides, bounce house, and climbing walls.

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We hiked up to the source of the hot springs inside a bathhouse. Steam rose off the water and evaporated into the chilly air.   Ayo explained, the hot water is piped off to the hotels.   Next to the bathhouse, there is a small pool of mineral water.  The water is clear and at a lukewarm temperature.  Well, first natural hot springs, check!  🙂

Considering the summer season hasn’t peaked, the town was deserted with only a few visitors.  We walked along the main strip searching for Sasquatch footprints.  The footprints led us to a large Sasquatch statue.

VP waved for us to get out of her picture frame.   She wanted to take a picture of the large sign posted ‘Sasquatch Parking Only’ with the large statue and we were in the way.  Ayo and I waited until VP was ready to press down the capture button and ran in the frame.  HAHAH, perfect shot!

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On our way to Bridal Veil Falls, the rain continued to cut in and out.  Luckily, when we finally parked, the rain has slowed down to just some drizzling.  A sign posted 15 minute with an arrow pointing to the fall.  That’s manageable…or so we thought.  What we quickly realized is this 15 mins walk will be strictly uphill.  Ayo and I were so out of breathe.  VP being her athletic self ran ahead of us with no issues.  The hike up was no easy trek.  But it is all worth it once we made it up.  The cascading waterfall is exactly like the name described.  A beautiful bridal veil. It is breathtaking (hehe, pun intended!)!

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This was good exercise.  So it is only right we take is easy for the remainder of the afternoon.  🙂

Recalled the summer of 2010, Ayo, EJ and I practically lived at Zuma, a local amusement center.  We spent every afternoon racing go karts and bumper boats and playing mini golf.  What better way to reminisce than to do it again for good time sake.  Nothing has changed, we are still that competitive on the track.  It was a tough race, but I managed to sneak past and lapped Ayo for the win!