Adventure Awaits!

First, a rather short story – given the name of my blog it’s about time I add another “ginger thing.”

Person: You should date [him] because he’s a ginger and so are you.
Me: (gasp) We must be soul mates!

Okay, not entirely. I wouldn’t say no to a date with this guy…





Still subbing. I finally did a stint (two now, actually) at the elementary school level. I have now done kindergarten and 4th grade as a sub. Those kids are adorable, but they are definitely a handful. I’ve been back at the school where I was long term subbing quite a few times and it has been fun to see students in other classrooms. I wonder if I will ever get used to having people call me by my last name. You would think that I’d be used to it by now, but sometimes it still feels weird. Haha, and it’s always a little strange to play it off when I hear my first name used in reference to a student.

Sometimes kids use “misses” instead of “miss” and, of course, I say something like this…. *shrug*


A few things to mention that I am excited about!

 I found this uh-MAZE-ing peanut butter at a local “organic food” store and they also had “paleo” chocolate chips {girlish squeal} So now I can eat chocolate chips and feel less guilty! Haha…and they had really good coconut ice cream. They also had some gelato that I want to try, so…stay tuned for a review on that.

Peanut butter and chocolate....

Peanut butter and chocolate….


I also learned to make these yummy NUTELLA muffins.

nutella muffin

Next weekend I will be competing in my first CrossFit competition. It’s an interbox friendly competition down in Fontana, CA. Teams of four, three work outs, and I’m really excited! We’re in the scaled division and a good place to start for my first competition I think. We’ve done a few practice rounds and we seem to work pretty well together as a team. I may have overworked my shoulder a little bit though, so I’ve been taking a few days off so that it will ready for next week. I’m sure there will be lots of pictures.

This is where we are competing on Saturday.

A few updates on my lifting…haha I can now deadlift 315lbs and backsquat 195lbs. Sadly, I don’t have pictures of this yet… I will try to rectify that soon.

About a year ago, I think, my mom asked me if I would want to go to Israel with her if some of her siblings decided to go on a tour. I’m not stupid, so of course I said yes. This little trip never really came about and then a few months ago, my mom asked again. I said no. Just kidding. Eager as ever, I told my mom I would love to go.


Naturally, my mom, 3 of her siblings and their spouses would need a chaperone – someone to keep them out of trouble. And of course the only person for the job was me. Right? Of course right! (And now I’m thinking about Fiddler on the Roof….)


Anyway, my mom and I have been slowly preparing for this trip; we’ve been looking at clothing, emergency items we might need or want, CrossFit locations on the off chance that we can stop in for tshirts. I mean, it would be awesome if we could actually work out, but I’m not sure I want to pack an extra pair of shoes just in case, and I’m not sure if I want to wear my CF shoes as my day to days… I guess I could, they were amazing when I was in San Fran. Anyway…We will be leaving in just a few weeks. We fly from California to Utah and then the following day we fly from  Utah to Paris. We have an hour lay over and then we fly into Amman, Jordan. I’m really excited about this.

“I’m leaving, on a jet plane…”

I asked my mom if she was nervous about our trip. She said no citing her trip to China as the reason for her lack of concern. Personally, I think Israel is a bit…different from China. How many times has Israel been attacked in the last century? How many times has China been attacked in the last century. Call me crazy, but I think Israel is potentially “scarier.”

I am a nervous traveler anyway. I mean, I get nervous making short trips because I always end up feeling like I’m forgetting something. I remember when I got on the plane to go to Italy for study abroad. I felt panicked and a bit irrational. I almost talked myself out of going. Haha, I can only imagine how unhappy the other passengers would have been considering our flight had already been delayed by an hour. Looking back, I can hardly believe that I considered abandoning the trip. I find myself feeling the same way now. Rather, I feel a bit anxious and find myself having doubts. Each time these feelings surface I remind myself that this is likely to be a once in a lifetime experience and I would likely regret not going if I were to bail. Besides, I want to get a CF shirt from Tel Aviv. Haha…

CrossFit Tel Aviv

Rough Jordan and Israel Itinerary

Day 1 and 2: arriving in Amman, Jordan and such
Day 3:  Amman/Bethabara
Day 4:  Madaba/Mount Nebo/PETRA!
Day 5: Petra/Eilat, Israel
Day 6: Eilat/Masada/Jericho
Day 7: Jericho/Ein Harod/Beth Shean/Nazareth/Galilee
Day 8: (This is a Saturday, so it will be Shabbot and we will go to church in Galilee) Galilee/Mount Tabor/ Synagogue/ Mount of Beatitudes
Day 9: Megiddo/Arbel/Mount of Beatitudes/Tiberias
Day 10: Galilee/ Capernaum/ Tel Dan/ Banias/ Golan Heights (Uhm, a boat ride across the Sea of Galilee
Day 11: Galilee/ Mount Carmel/ Caesarea/Jaffa/Jerusalem
Day 12: Rabbinic Tunnel/ New City Jerusalem/BETHLEHEM
Day 13: Old City Jerusalem
Day 14: Jerusalem – Saviors Last 24 Hours
Day 15: Continue the Last 24 Hours, church at the Jerusalem Center and traveling to Tel Aviv
AND FINALLY Day 16: Flying home from Tel Aviv


Spring Break

So a few weeks ago for Spring Break, I went to Utah to visit family and friends. It was a good trip and I had a great time.


It snowed, which was actually kinda fun.


I went bowling with Javie and her family.


We went to this waffle place and my name became Shara. Haha…



I represented at FUEL.


All in all, I was glad I made the trip. I got to spend time with people I missed and made some fun memories.  I even did a little hiking, but I didn’t take my phone with me or get any pictures from that.



Some Thoughts From the Past Few Weeks

So at the end of reading The Giver, I was looking for different activities to drive home the importance of memory.

The Giver by Lois Lowry

There is a lot of focus on memory and knowledge in the novel. We start the novel with Jonas recalling a memory to help him choose a precise word for his feelings. Throughout the novel he recalls memories as he tries to make sense of who he is and of course once he is chosen to be The Receiver of Memory, his whole life is dedicated to holding memories so that the people in his community and surrounding communities do not have to “remember” them and deal with whatever hardship memories might cause. They claim to have done this so that there could be Sameness, but I myself found myself asking questions that I had not had the capacity, or maybe just the perception, to consider when I read the book as a 7th or 8th grader. I’m excited that they’re making a movie, but after seeing the trailer I’m not sure how close it will be tied to the book.

The most prominent question that I kept coming back to throughout the novel, due to the fact that knowledge and memory/memories seem to be used interchangeably, was the question of whether memories and knowledge are different and if one was more important than the other. I decided that I wanted to do an activity with the students I have been working with in which we turned our classroom into the “Memory Annex” and became both Giver and Receiver. I presented them with eight (8) “memory transmission cards.” Essentially, these were memories like the ones in the novel, but they were events from our history (Moon landing, slavery, a wedding, discovery of King Tut’s tomb, President Obama’s election, and a few other more recent events). Students read the cards, decided what it showed about human nature, whether it should be “shared” with Jonas, and why it should be passed on.  After this I asked them to consider the question about whether or not knowledge and memories mean the same thing and I asked them which was more important. I presented it to them as a question that I found myself asking and that I did not have a complete answer for yet. Some of their answers were pretty interesting.

I wanted to throw a wrench into some of their thinking and see if some of them might change their minds. I had decided that, personally, I believe there is a difference though I am not sure which is more important. I don’t think either is necessarily more beneficial than the other and there are some fuzzy lines between them. I asked my students if they had memories of 9/11. They mostly said no because they were under the age of two when it happened. I asked them if they have knowledge of 9/11 and they all agreed that, yes, they did have knowledge of the event because they’d learned about it in school. I told them that I had both because I remember where I was when I found out about it and how I felt that day and the days following. (Of course they asked where I was and I shared that little tidbit because I was on the very same campus that I was teaching on…-shrug- so…)

I also found myself seeing religious undertones in the novel that I’m sure I would not have picked up on when I was younger. Mostly because I am a different person and have learned what my religion means to me. But I found myself considering if the role of the Giver was supposed to be that of Christ or a prophet of some kind. Jonas was learning to be the Receiver and the Giver was, for all intents and purposes, encouraging Jonas to think about whether the way things were was really the best way to live. Part of being the Receiver is protecting people from pain; another task is counseling those who make decisions to ensure the safety and well-being of each citizen in the community. Anyway, I could go on about this in more detail, but I won’t right now.

Overall, my experience was really interesting and I learned quite a bit. I learned more about myself as a teacher and things that I hadn’t thought of before. I think I will fine tune some of my philosophies. I think it’s probably obvious that I am cutting this post short; it’s been too long since I started it to really pick up where I left off. I think it is safe to say that a lot has happened since I started it.

Don’t Fight the Current

It’s been a really long time since I have made the time to write here. And as I always say, I have these moments where I long to hear the clickety-clack of the keys under my fingers, but tend to find myself called back to my responsibilities or the other things I want to do to procrastinate my responsibilities.

I often find myself reflecting on how quickly things can change. One minute a red light, the next a green light. Life is like that sometimes, though much messier with emotions (ours or the emotions of others); work opportunities (or a lack thereof); relationships (ending, beginning, wavering…); and anything else that adds to the every day. Last I wrote, I believe I was subbing here and there and working with an after school program. I was in what I thought was the budding stage of romance, working out regularly, working through the loss of my cousin, but generally happy.

Obviously, the fact that I thought a romance WAS budding means nothing really came of it. At least not really? I was actually rather frustrated with my work life too. I was making stupid compromises in some of my interpersonal relationships and just made some foolish choices. But since then my “regular” schedule has turned upside down. Life really has a way of working itself out if you stop trying to control every little detail. I still don’t really know where some of the friendships and relationships in my life are going, but I’m okay with where they are now. Mostly because I’m trying to focus on the things that I can control. Like myself. Haha…what a novel idea, hm? 

I was given the opportunity to return to my middle school and take on a long term position. It’s exciting and daunting all at the same time, but it reminded me why I went to school. Sure – grading is still a pain in the rear, the planning can be migraine and anxiety inducing, but I love the kids. I love their energy and they say some hilarious things. Here’s a little bit about my long term sub assignment. 8th grade English. 1 Honors class. And we are reading The Giver (which I love!). I am slowly learning alllll the names and getting back into the swing of the whole home and grading cycle.

The last thing I want to put in here, is a poem I wrote this last week. My cousin, Jon, has been on my mind lately. I never realized  how talented he was and that makes me sad. I’ve been listening to a song he recorded while on his mission and wanted to write something. It’s been awhile since I wrote anything that I was all that happy with, but here it is.

A Realization

Realizing that
The uncertainty was fear;
The shock was pain;
The anger was sorrow;
Realizing that
Those feelings
Were masks,
Were armor,
Protecting me
From what scared me
And made me feel vulnerable.
Realizing that fear,
Of possibilities was burdensome;
Of unworthiness was overwhelming;
Of rejection was unbearable.
Realizing that
I missed it
And that the fear
Is still there.
Realizing it is
Better to ride the wave
Rather than
Fight the current.
Feeling relieved
And revitalized;
I am not

“It’s a weird life, but it’s where I’m at right now.”

Yes, that is a quote from New Girl. And no, I’m not ashamed to admit it.  (Go read this 20 New Girl Quotes That Actually Sum Up Your Everyday Life)

Haha, it’s been awhile since I last posted about my rest day and baking some paleo recipe that was actually quite satisfying and delicious. My progress is continuing. I’m getting strong each day and I can see it in small ways here and there. But mostly, I think I’m happier. Not only have I been getting myself into shape physically, but I feel like I am making progress with other areas of my life. I started substitute teaching. So on top of the after school program I’m teaching, I am accruing a lot of funny stories. Today I was told that I look 21 and then another student told me I look like I’m 16. I’m not sure which is better. I just said, “Thank you [Student].” Because that’s what you say when people say… nice things? Haha…

Anyway, I am alive. I am well. I am still Cross Fitting. I do not regret the subject of my degree(s). I am living my weird life, but that’s where I am right now. And I am learning to embrace it. I should be enjoying the fact that I don’t have FINALS to deal with. I mean… This is probably the first time in about 7+ years that I have not had some project or paper to worry about. I am pretty much in charge of my own schedule. I am getting the experience I need and working on some of the things I wanted to accomplish.

Some songs to check out!  (Links to videos)

  1. Compass by Lady Antebellum
  2. More of You by The Goo Goo Dolls
  3. Rebel Beat by The Goo Goo Dolls
  4. Unconditionally by Katy Perry
  5. Everybody’s Got Somebody But Me by Hunter Hayes ft. Jason Mraz
  6. Say Something by A Great Big World ft. Christina Aguilera


Oh…Rest Day!

So, I’ve decided on Wednesday and Sunday as rest days. Today is, dun dun dun duh! Wednesday!

Last night my mom sent me a text that made me so so happy.

new ingredients!

new ingredients!

I have been wanting to try baking with different kinds of flour after reading a book called Wheat Belly. William Davis, MD specializes in preventative health care from what I remember. Basically, wheat has been modified so much that it no longer has all the same properties it did when mankind started eating it years and years ago. He recommends trying different types of flour (almond, peanut, coconut, etc) in order to have bread-like foods without the less than pleasant affects that wheat flour tends to have on our bodies, from bloat to blood sugar spikes. So, my mom brought home: coconut flour, almond meal, and milled flax seed.

I had some left over pumpkin from my curry Monday night and so I decided I should use that up. I went back to paleOMG for another recipe. I found a recipe for pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. I used that recipe to start, but I replaced the maple syrup with honey and some maple extract and the chocolate chips because I haven’t gone to find those yet. I also left out the cloves because of personal preference (1. I’m not a huge fan. 2. They had to be ground and I only had whole cloves… *cough*lazy*cough* ) I also added in some unsweetened, shredded coconut and I shredded 2 baby zucchinis.

pumpkin chocolate chip muffins with shredded coconut and shredded zucchini

pumpkin chocolate chip muffins with shredded coconut and shredded zucchini

I’m rather proud of the way they turned out. The tops look a little burnt, but they actually don’t taste burnt. The inside is just right… They were great warm so hopefully when they cool down they’ll still be yummy.

Yesterday, after the team WOD

[super fun, just sayin’ | Team of 3 (Myself, Chirs, and Chris) 4 rounds: 25 HSPH, 25 Power Snatch, 25 Pull Ups, 1000 meter row. Our team got 3 rounds and 473 meters.]

I stayed after and watched the next on ramp class and played around with double unders and then I did something I didn’t think I’d ever WANT to do. I have been wondering if I could do a 24″ box jump. I have been feeling pretty confident with my 20″ so I decided that I might as well try it while there were only a few people in the gym and I didn’t have to do a whole WOD with them, right? So…got the box. Tried a few 20″ then turned the box, chickened out, turned back to 20″ and did a few more, then I turned it to 24″ and said to myself, “If you fall, you fall. SUCK IT UP BUTTERCUP!” I didn’t fall, I didn’t even almost fall. I landed solidly on the box. It was more of a mental victory than a physical one….but I’ll take it!

While staying late was actually pretty fun, I realized that I need a crossfit playlist. So in addition to my  baking this morning I was music hunting. Here are some songs that I found/will be adding for working out:

  • Bangarang (Jacked Remix 124 BPM)
  • Play Hard (R3loaded Jacked Remix 140 BPM)
  • Rockin’ n’ Rollin’ (Jacked Remix 138 BPM)  This is probably my favorite…
  • Collard Greens (feat. Kendrick Lamar) – SchoolBoy Q  Coach Kat played this last night…
  • Country Folks (feat. Colt Ford & Danny Boone)  Bubba Sparxxx, making a country comeback?
  • Ride – Timeflies
  • Counting Stars – OneRepublic
  • Bezerk – Eminem
  • Beast – V.I.C.

I think that’s all for now…. Time to stretch, roll out, and then get ready for work.

Experimenting with Food!

There are many pieces to CrossFit that I am still trying to work into my life. I’ve embraced being sweatier than I have ever been in my life and love seeing my shirt change colors. I am finding that I like to be in work out clothes more than anything else these days. And I keep trying to find “fun” work out clothes that I will look forward to putting on… But along with the attire, you need the proper shoes; they need to keep you as close to the ground as possible so that you can plant your heels and have have room to wiggle your toes so you can lift heavy stuff. {Yup, I said stuff.} My new shoes are on their way…

Nano 2.0 - Hazy Yellow/White/Shocking Sherbert/Black

The fun part of my work out!

Sometimes I like to have longer pants on so my shins aren’t munched on by the edge of a box after a poorly executed jump. { It hasn’t happened…yet. KNOCK ON WOOD! } Sometimes I like longer shorts or pants if we’re running. If I know there will be a lot of reaching I make sure to wear a long undershirt. { Partly out of modesty, but mostly because I’m embarrassed of what it looks like underneath my shirt… } The lingo is a little silly and sometimes I still have to stare at an acronym for a move in the next day’s WOD and think, What on EARTH is a HSPU?!  But I’m slowly and surely getting the hang of most of it and I’m starting to understand the jokes and culture as well.

But the one thing that is still really hard for me? Eating a more {strict} healthy diet. Food has always been one of those things that I have struggled with. I mean, I like things that taste yummy and I don’t always remember to stop putting yummy things in my mouth. Especially if the yummy thing is made with chocolate… *wiping the drool from my lip* So, little by little I’m taking steps to eat better. I try to eat smaller portions throughout the day, but I’m sure my nutrition is still a little off. BUT, yesterday I was trying to do some research about different proteins that are good for women {didn’t really follow through on that one…so if anyone knows….?} when I found a blog of a crossfit gal who also does paleo recipes! I saw a curry dish on her page and had to stop for awhile. I haven’t really looked at any of her other recipes, but the curry sounded divine.

pumpkin cashew coconut curry | coconut [cauliflower] rice

SO, the dish: Pumpkin Cashew Coconut Curry over Coconut [Cauliflower] Rice. I watched the video, pinned it to my yummy food pinterest board and have not. stopped. thinking. about. since. heehee… Basically, that means I went to Trader Joe’s after work to pick up the various coconut stuffs, cauliflower, pumpkin, and I added in some butternut squash, baby zucchini, and something called a delicata squash…

it has an edible rind!

delicata squash

I was lazy and bought pre-cubed butternut squash and just put the cubes and the cleaned out delicata squash on a piece of foil and then on a pan. I put some olive oil on them then added salt and paper. Popped them in the oven at 400 degrees F for about 20 minutes. I have to say, I was a little nervous to eat the rind, but it’s sooooo delicate { delicata, duh! } that trying to peel it off was silly. I tried it and even with just some salt and pepper it was pretty amazing. After they came out of the oven, I let them rest until I was ready to let the curry cook down; that’s about the time I added the zucchini as well. Anyway, this is what mine ended up looking like.

no cashews because they hate me

my version

This was pretty tasty. I have to say, if paleo can taste this good, then maybe I won’t fight it anymore… On the other hand…it was a LOT of work, but it also made a lot of left overs because my mom’s not a huge fan of cauliflower. { She did admit that the coconut was an interesting flavor with the cauliflower though… }

That’s all.