SJSU Frosh Orientation 2015 🌺🌴👌

5.13.15-5.17.15

Aloha! I had another awesome opportunity to be a part of SJSU’s 2nd Frosh Orientation program in HAWAII!! You can read about last years trip here. It was an amazing and rewarding experience again even if our group was a little smaller. These students are going to do great at SJSU and I’m so glad I got to be apart of this program!

Luckily we did have some down time before our program started so we took full advantage! We took a trip to the Dole Plantation, lunch stop at Giovanni’s shrimp truck (yum! so good!), scenic drive through the countryside of the North Shore, beach trip at Chinaman’s Hat, took in some beautiful sunsets, shopped, explored bustling Waikiki, and of course had our orientation program! So thankful for this opportunity and to work with some truly fantastic student leaders!

The Dole Plantation was awesome! I was so excited as you can probably tell from the above picture! We took the Pineapple Express and got to drive through the pineapple fields. We learned how James Drummond Dole founded his world-famous agricultural empire and got to view the stunning scenery of the island’s famous North Shore. We experienced real tropical weather…bouts of pouring rain and then lots of sun and blue skies! A little rain didn’t get in our way of having a great time! I must say, the Dole Whip after our train ride really hit the spot! Sooooo delicious!

After Dole we headed to Giovanni’s famous shrimp truck for lunch! Look at those shrimp! Huge and delicious! Hit the spot! Then we continued through the countryside of the North Shore. It was such a cool experience seeing a busy city like Honolulu and then getting to explore the other side of the island. Much slower paced and so lush! We stopped at Kualoa Beach Park, Mokolii Island (Chinaman’s Hat) for some gorgeous ocean views. Just a little background on Mokolii…it means “little lizard” in Hawaiian and is also known among locals as Chinaman’s Hat because of its cone shape which resembles the peasant’s hat worn in rural China. It’s a popular spot for taking pictures and other than a few lonely palm trees and small beaches there isn’t much there. We thoroughly enjoyed dipping our feet in the warm water, talking some beautiful pictures and just enjoying being in such a gorgeous place!

We had a blast at the beach and enjoyed every minute! Love those palms and crystal clear blue water!

On Saturday 5.16.15  we had the first night of our frosh orientation program! We were very fortunate to have Sammy Spartan travel with us all the way from CA just to say HI to the incoming students and their families! Sammy was a HIT and everyone loved taking pictures with him.Here are a few pictures of our team, Sammy Spartan and all of the incoming students from Hawaii with their parents. Everyone was really excited about joining the Spartan community and looking forward to starting college in the fall.Ricky did a great job editing this below picture to include SJSU’s name. Our students were so excited to bring the spirit of SJSU to Hawaii and show these new students what it means to be a Spartan. It was such a wonderful experience seeing them so excited about their school and really connecting with these new students! Our cohort was a little smaller this year (only 8 students) so they really got an intimate experience! Welcome to SJSU! I can’t wait to have these students on campus in the fall and know that they will do great things!

Here’s a few pictures of our sweet set up! We really brought SJSU to Hawaii for these students! We had lots of swag to giveaway and got every excited about becoming Spartans.

Here we are at the end of Day 2 and I think we look pretty excited! Huge THANK YOU to the fabulous OL’s Brandon, Ricky and Clarissa for bringing that Spartan Spirit to Hawaii! This was a great trip with lots of fun memories! Hopefully we get to expand, build on this program, and go again next year! All our hard work and effort really paid off! Go Spartans! 👌🏻💙💛👌🏻

 Until next time Hawaii…Mahalo!

100 Days of Meditation! 💕🙏🏻💕

Yesterday (5/16/15) marked 100 days of meditating! I honestly can’t believe that 100 days has already passed. Time has flown by…I guess I’ve been having fun! I really LOVE the below quote from Thich Nhat Hanh and feel like it captures exactly how I feel about meditation.This quote is so on point and I truly feel transformed since starting my practice 100 days ago! Meditation has been a part of my life on and off for the last few years, but it hasn’t exactly stuck. I’ve attended lots of different retreats but haven’t always been successful in fully incorporating meditation into my daily life. My dear friend and mentor Cassie would say “not to be hard on yourself” and “as long as you come back and keep at it that’s all that matters.” I’m so proud that I’ve kept at it and made meditation a priority in my life! Thank you Cassie for showing me the way and taking me on this journey with you! I honestly feel so much better and almost like a new person…Or the person I really, truly am. I’ve found my true self. This all might sound weird, but meditation has seriously saved me! I feel so much more balanced, calm, and at peace. Additionally, my stress level has been significantly reduced or at least feels more manageable when I do my practice. This image below is totally how I feel now!
    I’ve been in Hawaii for the past few days for work (very lucky I know!) and feel so fortunate to have reached my 100 day meditation mark in such a beautiful place! I’m still thinking of some way to celebrate or recognize in some way reaching this milestone…for now I’ll just remember having this view while meditating. 

 I have experienced first hand the amazing benefits of mediation and plan to continue my practice. Meditating is a big part of my life now and something that I actually need. I’m so excited to be on this journey and can’t wait to see where it takes me! Wishing you all peace, happiness, and love!! 💕💕

  

Mother’s Day/Weekend Update 

I know I’m a day late, but I wanted to wish my wonderful Mom an amazing Mother’s Day! I love her so much and can’t thank her enough for all that she has done for me and our family over the years! She is truly amazing and I’m so lucky to call her my MOM! HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!!! ❤ ❤ ❤ The top picture of us in the collage I made is one of my absolute favorites with my Mom!

We actually flew down to Orange County Saturday morning because Chris’ friend Melvin was graduating from his masters program. Chris and Melvin have been best friends since high school and he was the best man at our wedding. Another friend of them both is Dave. Below is one of my favorite pictures of us all! This was from Melvin’s college graduation from CSU Fulerton. We thought it would be a great idea to recreate the photo for his masters graduation (that’s posted underneath). Just a few things have changed since then…Dave and his wife Richel got married and now have two adorable little boys! Chris and I got married, both finished graduate school and are still living in the Bay Area. Our only kids are our sweet pups Emma and Dash! When the five of us are together we have so much fun! It’s been such a blast to be at  “big” moments in all of our lives and to have remained such good friends! Saturday Melvin had a big family/friends party that included lots of food and a BOUNCE HOUSE! It was a blast! We spent the majority of the time in the bounce house with Dave and Richel’s cute kids! Chris and I are actually sore from all the bouncing and endless hysterical laughing we did that night. Melvin’s graduation was on Sunday (Mother’s Day) so we drove him to the ceremony early. He graduated from LMU with a M.A. in Pastoral Theology. I had never been on LMU’s campus before (having actually lived right down the street from it for 2 years when I was in grad school at USC)…let me tell you something…that campus is gorgeous! It was a little warm in the sun, but overall pretty good temperature for an outdoor graduation ceremony! We are both really proud of Melvin and can’t wait to see what he does next! Maybe there will be another photo to add to our sweet collection. CONGRATS MELVIN!

I Also wanted to wish my mother-in-law Sherry a very Happy Mother’s Day as well! It was so nice to spend some time with her in between all of Melvin’s celebrations over the weekend! Here’s a great picture of us all in her yard. OMG that lady knows how to grow succulents and has me totally hooked!

Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend celebrating with their mothers! It’s a short work week for me, as I take off for Hawaii on Wednesday for SJSU’s 2nd Frosh Orientation program. Can’t wait to smell that sweet Hawaiin air, relax a little by the pool and introduce some fabulous students to SJSU! Have a great week everyone!