Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Arrival and patriotism

We've arrived! The trip was pretty uneventful- except when I hit a bird and it made me really sad. Really, the bird hit me. It jumped out right in front of me and actually made it over the windshield... and then I heard a big thump against the truck itself. I never saw it after the thud, so maybe it's okay...

We got to spend a night with Sean's grandparents and then a day and a half at Sean's home. That was a nice break from driving. And we did some fun things, of which I'll probably put on pictures later.

We arrived on Friday, after some annoying traffic made us a lot later than we expected. My brother helped us unload, but it was still beastly getting everything to the apartment, mostly because of the heat. People weren't kidding when they said it's hot here. Someone told me it's been record-breaking a few of these days. What perfect timing for us to arrive! I pretty sure I've been dehydrated for five days.

We're unpacking slowly, which is kinda nice, except I can't find things half the time. We've been learning the area a bit, though Sean's a little quicker than I. But I'm proud to say that today I deftly navigated (with the help of the GPS) around Houston to buy some of Sean's birthday presents. Which are now wrapped in newspaper and masking tape, both leftovers from packed boxes. Whatcha gonna do when you don't know where the tape or scissors or wrapping paper are?

A couple of weeks ago, a doctor working for Baylor asked me to come for an interview, so that's what I did this morning. And guess what- he offered me the job! And after talking with Sean, I accepted. Yay, I have a job! I'll be doing EEGs on mice to help figure out epilepsy. Holy handle, I can't tell you what a blessing it was to get this job so quickly, it's such a financial relief. And it seems like a fun place to work.

Alright, that's enough of the words, let's do some pictures. Pictures that are wholy unrelated to my above thoughts. The last weekend we were in Provo, Sean and I explored Provo's Fourth of July celebrations with Kyle and his girlfriend (hee hee!). For your viewing pleasure:

Outside of the little colonial area were a bunch of flags.

I think they had all the different flags that ever represented this country. Dude, there's a lot!

We went into the historic printing press and were really impressed with how much work it took to print... anything!

Look at all those individual letters that had to be put all together just to make a page. Just think of it!

I think this was a contraption for binding books. I just thought it was neat lookin.

Here's Kyle gf. She's awfully happy grinding corn.

And then... we ate... crickets.
Moving on...
We ventured up to my lab to watch the fireworks which was a pretty great idea- great view without all the bugs. Unfortunately, we already had packed our little tripod, so we took squiggly fireworks photos. No matter, they were fun in the moment!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Goodbye Dear Provo

While we've been packing up to move, I've been thinking about the things I'll miss about Provo. And a few things that'll I'll be happy to say goodbye to. I'm taking a break now from last minute packing and cleaning to tell you my thoughts. Along with a few pictures.

Things I’ll Miss:

  • RESTAURANTS: Zupas (best tomato soup I’ve ever had), Maestros (oh man, they’ve got European Drinking Chocolate), Bajios (though there might be some good replacements in Texas), Noodles and Co (Pesto Cavatappi!), Paradise Bakery (I could eat the Walnut Chicken Salad Sandwich every day. I need to learn how to make maple bread), Coney Island Custard (Chocolate Shake with raspberry mix-in), J Dawgs (best hot dogs, hands down).


This is Maestro's European Drinking Chocolate. I know. I know.

  • What I like to call “Heaven in a Bottle,” otherwise known as BYU Creamery Chocolate milk. Oh how I’ll miss it. Ohhh.

  • It’s been really great having Kyle around the last year. Sean and Kyle’s mission overlapped by a few months, so there a stretch of almost 4 years that they didn’t see each other. I actually think that Kyle’s what we’ll miss most about being here. He’s a good brudda. I don’t know how much Kyle will miss us though, he just got an awesome and pretty girlfriend- he’s well occupied.

  • There’s this one drinking fountain in the Widtsoe that I know is very temperamental, but many others do not. How I’ve loved watching them press the button and have the water shoot straight up, right in the face. It's terrible, but I love it.

  • I really love hearing news about the church on the news. It makes me chuckle and smile.

  • I’ll truly miss my lab. I work with great, brilliant people. And mice. There’s such a happy atmosphere and music’s playing all the time. My advisor/boss has been such a great help in every way. And there’s a fantastic view from the top of the SWKT.


Yep, I worked at the top. It was great

  • It’s been great just knowing the town so well. Especially campus. I feel so comfortable here. It’s no fun starting over. Well, it is actually fun, but less comfortable.

  • Provo is such a safe place. I have no problem walking around with Sean at night; I’ve never died here; stuff like that. Houston’s… not quite as safe.

  • Our ward is such a treasure. I’ve made some woooooonderful friends and learned how to be a good woman from all those great ladies. It’s been really fun being with so many newly married couples and I’ll miss that automatic kinship.

  • Provo is where “Sean and Katie” began, where it blossomed and flourished. Except for weeks here and there, our whole life together has been in this funny little city. We won’t be able to take a walk to where we had our first kiss anymore. We can’t drive by where Sean proposed to me anymore. That’ll be sad.

  • Oh man, I’ll miss the Daily Universe. BYU’s newspaper is so unintentionally funny. And sometimes thought-provoking. I’ll especially miss Police Beat: “Man in bear suit was reported handing out flowers to women walking into the library. Police told the man to stop.”

  • Silly as it is, I’ll miss the malls in Provo and Orem. Sean and I really enjoy walking around the mall, watching funny things people do and finding fun things to laugh about. We’ll have to find a new mall to visit.


We usually enter the mall through Nordstrom's which have mannequins with flexible fingers. So we always put them in the "I love you" sign.

  • Our apartment is so cute. It’s small but it’s served us well. Half of the front was covered in plants and yesterday someone came and took it all out. It’s a sign that it’s time to go.

  • I’ll miss unconsciously knowing exactly which way to turn to reach the elevator buttons in the SWKT. I couldn’t tell you which way they are, but my body knows which way whenever I’m there.

  • Surprisingly, I’ll miss the mountains. When I first came here, I was annoyed that they blocked my view of the sky. Now I like them. I guess they’ve grown on me. No more mountain hikes.


I'll miss Y Mountain the most.

  • My most frequented buildings at BYU: SWKT, Benson, MARB, Widtsoe, and the Library. And Sugar and Spice in the Wilk.

  • Sean won’t have anybuddy to speak Hmong with anymore. He had some old companions here but we’re pretty sure there won’t be any Hmong-speakers in Texas.


Hmongers: Yaj Pov, Cai, and Yim Leej

Things I Won’t Miss

  • Our shower is leaky and gross and I can’t wait to get away from it!

  • Those idiotic Questar commercials with the guy being a show host and interviewing the water heater and others. Ugh, I’m about to throw up every time I see it!

  • I have no clue where they all come from, but there’s are waaaay too many bugs in this house. Especially lately. No matter what we do, they appear. I think they’re trying to chase us away.

  • The South Stairs of Death. I’ve died a thousand times and I’m ready to stop.

But I really will miss you Provo. You've been a good city to me. So long, farewell! I know I'm going to shed a tear tomorrow. I'm such a pansy.
Now, I need to know what to look forward to about Houston! Anyone familiar with Texas and/or Houston- what should I make sure to check out??
Things people asked about the pictures in the last post: I use a 18-55mm zoom lens (the one that came with the camera, the one that will last me a long time because lens's aint cheap) though occassionally a 10x macro lens the just screws on (not anything fancy). I also use Photoshop CS4 to edit my photos, to which I'm eternally grateful.