it was a full weekend and this week will also be busy.

on saturday, i went to durham, north carolina for a wedding. meanwhile, will packed up his car and moved to louisville, kentucky for the summer. as you can imagine, it was a bit hectic.

although i am majorly sleep deprived from the weekend, i had a really good time. tony, one of the first all nations students, got married. a bunch of old all nationers went out and we had a reunion. it was a special time. i met these guys 8 years ago and a lot of them had never touched a bible let alone had relationship with god at the time. now they are leading small groups and teaching the bible to others. it really encouraged me.

i also roomed with my old supervisor and good friend YSL over the weekend. we were realizing that although we'd seen each other at weddings and such, we hadn't hung out in two years! there was a lot of catching up to do, thus the late night talks. i respect her so much! she is an awesome woman, in many ways.

we reflected on how you never know who will bear fruit when you are first scattering the seed. i remember after the very first welcome event, i took the list of people who came and just went knocking on doors. at the time, it was so random. now, some of these guys are my good friends and really faithful people. i was only 22 back then. i was so young, and yet god somehow used me. or rather, i think i was just there to be a part of what he was doing.

i've been off staff for 2 years now. i have not led anything in that time. not one thing. it's really been a season of anonymity. who am i when no one's looking? when i don't have an official role? sometimes it's not so pretty. i don't know what god has for me, but i'm grateful for the encouragement i got this weekend.


ha ha

i left a comment on the blog of a friend and got this email in reply:

Thanks Bo! I think blogging is sooo 2007, huh?!? My reader gets filled with my stuff and your stuff (sometimes Larissa)... No one blogs anymore, huh?!

it seems that blogging has become a thing of the past.

but that doesn't stop me from loving it!



i really want a film camera. yes! the old school kind. but i do not want to spend the money! do you have a nice film camera or know someone who does that is willing to donate? or let me borrow? pretty please???


can i just tell you...

...how much i love chicago?

it is such a great city. one of the things i like most about chicago is how walkable it is. i remember being amazed by how many people were out and about when it was 20 degrees. imagine what it's like when the weather is nice. there was one day in winter when it hit 60 degrees. during the lunch hour, the streets were filled with people who were taking strolls, out for a runs or chilling at the park munching on their food. no bench, stair or potential sitting area was left empty.

it reminds me of my travels to other countries. when i was in italy i relished how people chilled outside in the evening and enjoyed being outdoors. it creates a community feel to be out like that, rubbing shoulders with people rather than being trapped indoors or being in your car. in LA, i feel like people only go outdoors to go to the beach or go shopping at the newly popular outdoor malls like the grove.

another thing i love is how great the public transportation is out here. when i lived in LA, i tried to take public transport. i took it to work everyday and used it to go in and out of k-town. there is still a special place in my heart for the public transport efforts in LA.

but MAN. here in chicago, i live car-free! well, i guess i cheat a little because will has a car. but i almost never drive. it is common for people to not have cars here, or to have one car rather than two. actually, i don't know any family who owns two cars. one friend moved here from LA and after a year he sold his car and got a bike. today i was walking out the front door to the bus stop at the end of my block and thought, how lucky am i that i don't have to drive to work every day! it is totally doable to live here without a car. imagine that! it is seriously a dream come true for me. ( that sounds cheesy :P)

even when we do drive, 20 minutes is considered far.

i am getting a bike this weekend. my friend from denmark is moving back home and offered to give me her bike. i cannot wait to ride it!


week 3

week 3 of my marathon training begins today. last week i made some adustments to the schedule. instead of doing 3 miles on tues and thurs, i ran it on wed. and i did the long run on friday, instead of saturday.

my long run went well. it was 6 miles. after the first 2 miles i felt pretty good. i ran it at 3:30 in the afternoon and it was hot. i was sweating cats and dogs as it was the first really warm day of the summer. also, i mixed up the path a bit. i ran up the lake and when i hit the river, i cut across through the river walk into the city. i ran the rest of the way back through the city. what i liked about running through the city was that it is much more interesting and there's a lot more to see, rather than just miles of lake. but there is more congestion and i had to stop at a lot of lights.

this week, i'll be making adjustments again, because i'm going out of town for a wedding this weekend. here are my scheduled runs, but i'll probably do the long run on friday:

mon: 3 mi [i think i skipped this one. i can't remember.]
tue: 4 mi [done]
thu: 3 mi [done]
sat: 6 mi [did 4 only]



will and i took a quick overnight trip to michigan this week to celebrate the end of his first year of school. it was quite relaxing and good to get away for a night.

weko beach, michigan
weko beach, michigan


movie rec

last month i saw a really good movie: call and response. it's about human trafficking. some mainstream musicians and actors got together and created what they called a "rockumentary" - a documentary with music mixed in between. after the showing, the director, justin dillon met with us for some Q&A. i'm still trying to figure out what i can do. meanwhile, i'm writing a post to get you all to watch it.

very cool

you've probably heard about this by now. a new yorker has pledged to wear one dress for 365 days, embellishing it with different accessories. she's raising money for education for slum children in india.

go take a look: the uniform project


rainy day

it was rainy, cold and windy today. an umbrella flipping kind of windy. while it was raining sideways, i got on the wrong bus. i realized it, got off, and went to the bus stop. waited forever. then a bus passed me by because it was full. a second bus tried to pass me by but i knocked down the door until they opened it for me.

also, a couple that i have become good friends with is moving to denver tomorrow. i'm pretty bummed about that. it doesn't help that i have become attached to their newborn baby.

and. i didn't do my run today because of a pain in my left quad, and the rain.

another not-so-great thing happened today that i won't mention.

here's my attempt to cheer myself up. and cheer you up after reading this downer of a post.

pretty yellow flowers.


recent work

check out my recent photography!

yj's 1st birthday
baby marin - newborn portraits
anja (my danish friend) - portraits

week 2

week 2 of my marathon training begins today. there are 18 weeks total.

i'm discovering that i don't like running alone, and would like to find someone to run with during the week. sometimes i can coerce will to run with me, but he can't always come and i get lonely running alone. there are some runners in my neighborhood, but they run in the morning, which i don't think i can sustain. i prefer running after work. and then there is the matter of finding someone who runs at my pace.

also, i'm supposed to do some strength and core work once a week, and i need to figure out how to incorporate that. i wish there was a 24-hour fitness here. i really miss my yoga and strenth endurance training classes. those would've been perfect.

i won't be able to go to the group run this saturday because i have something that morning. i'm going to try to get will to run that with me.

this week's runs:
mon: 3 mi [done]
tue: 3 mi [done]
thu: 3 mi [done]
sat: 6 mi [done]



we've become a little yogurt making factory.


1st long run: 5 miles

summary:  bad start, good finish

it started off like this.  i slept early last night in preparation for the 8am group run today.  i planned out how to get there.  i was mentally ready for my first long run.  i got up, got ready and started driving there.  

as i was driving though, i looked over and i saw a bunch of people with orange shirts on running along the path.  orange world vision shirts.  i did a double take.  it was my running group.  what were they doing so far along the path already???

it turns out the run started an hour earlier today, at 7am.  they sent out an email yesterday at 3:30pm, but i didn't check it so i didn't know.  i was seriously mad.  like you know when you plan everything out perfectly but it still doesn't turn out right?

so i had to turn around, go home, map out a 5 mile path and get myself pumped to run 5 miles alone.  right.  

i stretch a bit, then step out the door and start running.  i kid you not - one minute later it starts raining.  and about five minutes after that my left side starts cramping.  i felt like the marathon gods were against me.

well, halfway through the run, the cramp is gone and i'm feeling really pretty good, even though it's raining lightly.  i'm also feeling amazed that i'm actually doing this by myself.  go me!  

i finished in good time.  

next week:  6 miles.


to my LA friends,

i love you, but please don't complain about the weather.


week 1

my marathon training officially began on monday.

i'm training with the chicago world vision running group. our first group run was saturday, where we ran 3 miles to see what our marathon pace would be. it looks like my pace was a 9-10 minute mile, which means i'll run the marathon at 11-12 minutes per mile, which means i should be able to run the whole thing in about 5 hours.

my goal though, is to get myself across the finish line.

it really helps to have a running group. showing up early on saturday morning wasn't easy, but once i got there i felt pumped and more motivated than when i run alone. i can already tell that it will be a bonding experience for everyone.

also, i learned a lesson. go pee before you run. i started the run and realized i had to use the restroom but there weren't any along the lake path. so i tried to hold it. but by mile 2 my bladder was in major pain and i thought i was going to have to just pee in public. luckily, there was a restaurant nearby so everyone didn't have to see my naked butt.

this is my training schedule. i'm using mapmyrun to map out my running paths since i don't have an iphone or a gps watch. here's the map of the most recent run i did. as you can see, i'm very blessed to be able to run through lots of greenery and the lake.

i've been running with a cotton tank and long pants, but with the weather warming up it's been hot. so this week i got some shorts, and a moisture wicking tank and long sleeve (go to nordstrom rack for good deals! i got all nike stuff for like half off).

i also got a little pouch that you can strap to your shoe. i usually put my key and fob in my bra (sorry, tmi for the men), but for the group runs i will need to also carry my cta pass, pocket money and id, so i got that for $6 at fleet feet. i had been fitted for a good pair of shoes and moisture wicking socks a few months ago so that is set.

lastly, i want to get a watch. when i run alone i have no idea how fast i'm going or how long i'm taking. the watch will help with that.

i'm trying not to buy a bunch of stuff for the marathon but just the essentials (although it doesn't looks like it from this post).

i need to cross train with some strength and core training. i'm still trying to figure out how i will do that!

for you veteran marathoners or runners in general, send me tips if you have any!

this week's runs:
mon: 3 mi [done]
tue: 3 mi [done]
thu: 3 mi [done]
sat: 5 mi [done]

wish me luck!

the bird attack

in my last post i mentioned that i got attacked by a bird. i got an email from my mom this morning in response to that:

Dear Boyun,
How are you doing?
I checked your blog, you were attacked by a bird.
Are you OK now?
I send another addition on the conference note, would you correct the part of TC xxx's reponse and Corrective Action Plan?
Thanks again.
I love you!

one thing about being long distance is that i get more emails from my mom. i love getting her emails! so funny! i've been editing some of her written work so that's what the other stuff is about.

update on the bird attack: i was a bit traumatized by the attack so when i went running the next day i kinda freaked every time i saw a bird. but when i approached the site of the incident, i noticed that there was a row of trees along the path whose branches hung really low. i think my head got too close to a nest or a bird that was in the tree and that's why it decided to attack me.

i think i'm okay now. thanks mom.



i went to the turkish festival here a few weeks ago. i was expecting a bit more, but it was still fun to be around turkish food, music and people.

balloons at the turkish festival.

today i got attacked by a bird during my run. it was seriously traumatizing. a little bird landed on top of my head and pecked at it and then flew away. does my head look like a nest or something?


summer hours

i get every other friday half off.  yay!  starting today through august.  i don't know what to do with all that extra time!  it's wonderful.

summer rose.


what is wrong with this picture

it's june and temps were averaging in the 60s this week, with rain and wind. i am wearing my wool coat with thinsulate again but i still cannot stay warm.