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When I'm not here, you may find me wandering the pages below. (If I'm a regular visitor to your site and I've left your link off or mislinked to you, please let me know! And likewise, if you've blogrolled me, please check that my link is updated: thisroamanticlife.blogspot.com. The extra (a) makes all the difference!)

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Body: in sickness and in health

I won't lie; this body and I have had our issues with each other for many years. Body image -- sure. Physical and mental overextension -- comes with being a Type A kind of girl. I still struggle with these things, so they show up from time to time in my writing.

More recently, illness, pure but not simple, has added itself to the mix in a multi-system sort of way. And the challenges in figuring out exactly what's gone wrong are many. As problems have revealed themselves in the last few years, beginning with reactive hypoglycemia in late 2008, I've documented them here, partly to gain a little clarity on managing complex conditions but mostly to give voice to vulnerabilities I feel but don't normally share with anyone face to face. Better out than in, they say, right? (Oh yes, humor is one way I deal.)

The links below cover the different angles I've examined (and from which I've been examined) within that experience.

Travel: neither here nor there

When the person you're married to lives two time zones away, you log a fair number of frequent flier miles. And if you blog about commuter relationships, you log quite a few posts en route too.

Since we're no longer in separate places, I blog less often from airports. But we do travel -- together now! -- which is much more fun to write about. So in addition to thoughts on our years of commuting, the links below cover the places we've been as a pair and, in some cases, the adventures that have happened on the way.

Writing: the long and short of it

Why do I do it? Good question. Maybe it's not so much that I like to write but that I have to write, even when the words refuse to stick to the page. Believe me, I've tried doing other things like majoring in biochemistry (freshman fall, many semesters ago). Within a year, I'd switched to English with a concentration in creative writing and wasn't looking back.

After graduating, I taught English for a few years and then worked as an editor, which I still do freelance. In 2007, I applied and got into an MFA program at a place I like to call Little U. on the Prairie. I finished my degree in 2011 and have been balancing tutoring and writing on my own ever since.

The following links cover the writing I've done about writing: process, content, obstacles, you name it. It's not always pretty. But some part of me loves it, even when it's hard. And this is the result.

Heart: family and friends

I'd have a hard time explaining who I am without being able to talk about the family I grew up in as well as the people I've met beyond its bounds. But even with such context, it's not easy! In the simplest terms, I'm a first-generation Asian-American who has spent most of this life caught between cultures. That, of course, doesn't even begin to describe what I mean to, but there's my first stab at the heart of it all.

That's what this group of posts is reserved for -- heart. The essential parts of my life whose influences I carry with me, for better or worse. The links below cover what I've written as I've learned how these forces work within me, for me, against me, in spite of me. They anchor me even as they change me, and they keep life interesting.

Recommended reading

What do I do when there's too much on my mind and my words won't stick to the page? I escape into someone else's thoughts. Below is a collection of books and articles that have been sources of information, inspiration, and occasional insight for my own work.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

En route encore

I'm writing from Halifax, Nova Scotia, during one of my layovers on the journey home -- I have one more in Toronto, where I'll go through customs. It's hard to believe that I left St. John's, Newfoundland, on the 9:30 a.m. flight and will be back in Seattle just before 8 p.m., which is really 12:30 a.m. in the time zone I've been in since Saturday. (Newfoundland is an extra half-hour ahead of its immediate western neighbors, hence the weird conversion.)

It's been a really wild week -- amazing ups and really frustrating downs involving some family circumstances, which I will get into in a future post (or two). For now, let me finish what I was in the process of writing about in my last entry: some timely discoveries for our third wedding anniversary celebration.

If there's one thing that D and I have missed enormously since both of us went on the low-carb diet, it's pasta (he has reactive hypoglycemia, which means we have similar dietary restrictions). So imagine our excitement when we found low-carb noodles at the grocery store while we were shopping for our anniversary weekend!

D has especially missed pad thai, and these turned out to be perfect in flavor and texture for it. The noodles themselves are made from tofu and yam flour, with only one gram of net carbohydrates per serving.


We also found that our grocery store carries an Italian-style dried pasta by a company called Dreamfields, which we will try when I get back home. It is also low in carbohydrates, though not quite as low as the Shirataki noodles.

I think these finds have probably been the most diet broadening ones in a while, so even if this seems like minor news, we're happy about it. And of course, it was a special treat for us to have these goodies to celebrate with. Noodles symbolize long life in Chinese culture -- hopefully this culinary discovery is not only a good addition to the list of foods we can eat, but a good omen too.

My flight's about to board. More news after I get home -- I have a huge backlog of things to post about! (I promise they're not all food-related.)

2 comments:

French Fancy said...

those noodles sound just the job. France is poorly served for low-calorie or carb alternatives - yet the people are all so slim, it is most unfair. I adore pasta and could happily eat it for nearly every meal. I am quite overweight though and if I could find a low-carb alternative I would definitely buy it.

Hope the reason for your journey to Novia Scotia is not a bad one. I look forward to finding out the story behind it.

Contemporary Troubadour said...

FF, the Dreamfields pastas are available on Amazon, so you could order them and have them sent to you. We're considering doing the same ourselves (might be just slightly cheaper than buying in the store if we get enough to earn free shipping).

As for Nova Scotia, that was just a stop on the way home -- didn't get to see anything there but the airport! More thoughts soon though, probably over several posts. There's too much to talk about all of it in one.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

En route encore

I'm writing from Halifax, Nova Scotia, during one of my layovers on the journey home -- I have one more in Toronto, where I'll go through customs. It's hard to believe that I left St. John's, Newfoundland, on the 9:30 a.m. flight and will be back in Seattle just before 8 p.m., which is really 12:30 a.m. in the time zone I've been in since Saturday. (Newfoundland is an extra half-hour ahead of its immediate western neighbors, hence the weird conversion.)

It's been a really wild week -- amazing ups and really frustrating downs involving some family circumstances, which I will get into in a future post (or two). For now, let me finish what I was in the process of writing about in my last entry: some timely discoveries for our third wedding anniversary celebration.

If there's one thing that D and I have missed enormously since both of us went on the low-carb diet, it's pasta (he has reactive hypoglycemia, which means we have similar dietary restrictions). So imagine our excitement when we found low-carb noodles at the grocery store while we were shopping for our anniversary weekend!

D has especially missed pad thai, and these turned out to be perfect in flavor and texture for it. The noodles themselves are made from tofu and yam flour, with only one gram of net carbohydrates per serving.


We also found that our grocery store carries an Italian-style dried pasta by a company called Dreamfields, which we will try when I get back home. It is also low in carbohydrates, though not quite as low as the Shirataki noodles.

I think these finds have probably been the most diet broadening ones in a while, so even if this seems like minor news, we're happy about it. And of course, it was a special treat for us to have these goodies to celebrate with. Noodles symbolize long life in Chinese culture -- hopefully this culinary discovery is not only a good addition to the list of foods we can eat, but a good omen too.

My flight's about to board. More news after I get home -- I have a huge backlog of things to post about! (I promise they're not all food-related.)

2 comments:

French Fancy said...

those noodles sound just the job. France is poorly served for low-calorie or carb alternatives - yet the people are all so slim, it is most unfair. I adore pasta and could happily eat it for nearly every meal. I am quite overweight though and if I could find a low-carb alternative I would definitely buy it.

Hope the reason for your journey to Novia Scotia is not a bad one. I look forward to finding out the story behind it.

Contemporary Troubadour said...

FF, the Dreamfields pastas are available on Amazon, so you could order them and have them sent to you. We're considering doing the same ourselves (might be just slightly cheaper than buying in the store if we get enough to earn free shipping).

As for Nova Scotia, that was just a stop on the way home -- didn't get to see anything there but the airport! More thoughts soon though, probably over several posts. There's too much to talk about all of it in one.