MARCH 2015


#60 Pints & Mics

01 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Thrilled about the launch of my new podcast with Chris Ward. Our first episode, The Art of Conversation, made its debut and Chris and I couldn’t be more excited with the way things have shaped up. We’re also super amped to get recording more episodes and to have some more released coming up soon.

#61 Scary Close

02 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Finished Don Miller’s newest book pretty recently. His books are consistently pretty impactful in my life. This one takes a very different tone and approach than some of my past favorites, but it still contains a lot of valuable thought.
I think it’s also kind of funny how much Miller’s stories parallel a lot of different stages in my life. His delve into deeper, more intimate relationships reflects a lot of what I’ve had to learn over the past few years when it comes to wearing fewer masks and being a more honest version of yourself.

#62 Wedding Invitations

03 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Deanna and I have been in overdrive this week, trying to get these invitations all assembled and in the mail as quickly as possible. We’re now sixteen weeks away from the big date and it only feels closer and closer.
There are countless reasons to be excited about our wedding, the inauguration of our marriage being the obvious, primary, one. But we’re also super excited to be able to see many of our close friends and family members again, and all in one place to boot.

#63 State of Wonder

04 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

This sunny week in Oregon has made it all too easy to get dressed later in the day, sitting in the sun spot, reading a book for as long as one can possibly get away with it.

As part of my quest to read more female authors, I looked to see which fiction writers I really needed to pay some attention to, and Ann Patchett’s name kept coming up. I picked up State of Wonder and it’s been such an enjoyable journey into magical realism, it’s been a page turner from the get-go.

#64 The PNW Nomads Visit

05 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Liberty in North Korea always sends me the most fun teams to host. It was such a blast getting to meet Jake, Elaine, and Alyssa. Any team with an Elaine on it has got to be a good one after all, right? Anyways, it was a lot of fun getting to see the new “To The North Korean People” campaign and to introduce NGN’s director Anna to the organization.

We also got to go out in the evening to see The Drop Box with was a powerfully moving documentary. I Love hosting nomads, and I Love the community of LiNK that remains a big piece of my life years later. I Love being around people with whom no explanation is necessary for doing something unconventional with your life.

#65 International Studies Pizza Night

06 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Had a good time getting to spend some after hours time with my cohort and the International Studies department at Pegasus Pizza. Also got to bring Deanna along and finally introduce her to some of the names and faces she’s been hearing about a lot since I started grad school.

#66 Asian Markets

07 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

This weekend, Saturday in particular, revolved around Asian food and supermarkets! We finally discovered good pho in Eugene at Yi Shen, and stocked up at Sunrise. I may have overpaid for some important goodies in my life, but in the long run, it’ll be worth it after all.

#67 PLC

08 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

This second week of March has unmistakably been “crunch time.” It’s been a light quarter, but that’s culminated in any and every project being due this week. I’m really looking forward to roughly this time next week, when I embark on two weeks vacation.

#68 Sweet Life Cupcakes

09 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Had a fun little gathering on a Monday evening involving picture games and Sweet Life. Love these cupcake flavors, and the way St. Patrick’s flavors are taking over menus in general. You can keep your pumpkin craze, fall. I’m loving the spring and its Irish Cream, stouts, lamb roasts, and corned beef.

#69 Ube Ice Cream

10 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

I found a place to get ube ice cream in Eugene, and all the other fun flavors Magnolia makes– avocado, queso, etc. Considering how Eugene so far appears to have a Filipino population of one, this has been quite the proud find of mine. Did I way overpay for this treat? Yes. Was it still somehow worth it? Yup.

#70 The Fun Stamps

11 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Sent out our first batch of wedding invitations in style. I went to the Post Office to see what fun stamps they had available, and so the bundle I bought included Wilt Chamberlain, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Cash, the statehood of Nevada, Harry Potter characters, and Black History Month. The Harry Potter stamps probably added an extra hour on to the time I spent addressing the envelopes, because it was very important to see who was worthy of the exclusive McGonagall or Luna Lovegood stamps.

#71 Hop Valley Brewing Co.

12 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

In the middle of a pretty busy week, Alli texted me just in time to prevent me from raiding my pantry for anything vaguely resembling a snack by inviting me to Hop Valley. The weather was nice out, and a beer outdoors as the sun goes down later in the day is sometimes the very best way to recharge.

#72 Barn Dancing

13 March 2015 // Creswell, Oregon

Dan had a gathering at his place in Creswell, which is a boarding ranch for horses. We had a fun night roasting hot dogs on a campfire and playing some guitar tunes in the dark.

Then the subject of line dancing came up, and eventually actual line dancing ensued. It was my first time in nearly a year, but we got to dance at an actual barn with the horses in and everything, so it was all good!

#73 Andrea Gibson

14 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Deanna and I had the chance to hear Andrea Gibson perform some spoken word at the WOW Hall. She’s got really good delivery and her poetry is very emotionally rich and saturated. I’d never heard much of her work prior to the evening, but I recognized her name as a pretty big deal in the world of spoken word. Quite the set of talent.

#74 Study Night

15 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

I haven’t had a true final in… I don’t know, almost four years now? But looks like old habits die hard. My evening was dedicated to all there is to know about charity, trusts, and annuities. On the flip side, in about six hours, I’ll be all done with the quarter and free to enjoy a delicious two weeks off.

It’s been a pretty easy quarter, actually, but the one exception has been the past week and a half where every sort of deadline there could be decided to converge. Now comes the second half of March, which sounds pretty exciting to me– a visit from some friends, St. Patrick’s Day, a visit from the almost-in-laws, and a lot more exploring.

#75 Two Weeks Off

16 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Going into my final exam, the day had been thick, gray, and hazy the entire way through. I finished up, and as I walked out, it seemed to have turned into a completely different day. Bright sun overhead and all the signs of spring.

It’s gonna be good to have two weeks off to spend unwinding. Really looking forward to the visiting friends, the hikes, and all that’s up and coming.

#76 Beers O’Green

17 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

For the record, Eugene is probably the easiest place to do St. Patrick’s Day it’s so green. Or maybe it’s more of a challenge to differentiate between St. Pat’s and any other day that green is everywhere.

I love days like St. Patrick’s because I get to have more themed fun when I cook. And with time off tonight I got to go complete with a Guinness stew, corned beef reuben bites, mini meat pastries, and potatoes and brussel sprouts. And green beers too, of course.

#77 Pastor Tim

18 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Had a meeting with our pastor to discuss our church’s role in partnering with different nonprofits around the Eugene area and maybe a few internationally. Loving his enthusiasm for wanting the church to collaborate with other helpers around, and I’ve got a good feeling about things to come.

I’ve kind of wanted to play this sort of role at a church for a long time. One of the things I really love about my job (slash, jobs) are the doors that it opens towards things I love to do.

#78 Weekend With Dee

19 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Deanna got off of work a little bit earlier this Thursday, which gave us a slight head start on our weekend. Had a fun little dinner together and then went off to go see Insurgent– pretty good without having any idea what to expect after the first movie.

I love getting to spend weekends with her being happy and enjoying life. No need for anything too fancy, I just enjoy it.

#79 Tea Stash

20 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Discovered the loose leaf tea section at the Kiva this week. Needless to say, it was a lot of fun, and I stocked up quite a bit. I was able to pick up five bags of Formosa Panfried Green, Mint Maté, Russian Smoked Caravan, Red Rooibos, and Tibetan Raspberry.

I kept the bags by my front door for sometime too, and now my house smells fantastic.

#80 Hiking with Anthony & Breanna

21 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Went on a long awaited double date with our friends Anthony and Breanna now that the two of them are able to live in the same city. Went on one of our favorite hikes up Mount Pisgah.

We also got to get in a good game of Settlers of Catan and introduce them to Falling Sky Deli. Solid day and double date altogether.

#81 World Water Day

22 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

World Water Day was appropriately rainy in town, so I spent it holed up in one of my favorite coffee shops to catch up on some writing and photo editing.

Actually, I also managed to do a bit of reading about California’s drought and some measures a few of my old homes are looking into— reopening a desalination plant in Santa Barbara and groundwater drilling in the Central Valley. It’s a bit concerning since both those options aren’t spectacular for the environment, but options are kind of limited. Even Oregon has gotten more sun than rain so far in the year, which is way abnormal.

#82 Home, Marilynne Robinson

23 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

There is a saying that to understand is to forgive, but that is an error, so Papa used to say. You must forgive in order to understand. Until you forgive, you defend yourself against the possibility of understanding. –Marilynne Robinson

Spent the first full day of break on the couch under a blanket to finish off this book. Robinson’s a terrific author– I mean she managed to create a world of beauty and honesty that I keep revisiting, and she set it in Gilead, Iowa, no less.

#83 Sweet Cheeks with GCF

24 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Went wine tasting yesterday. That was a good amount of fun.

Super thankful for having people nearby to share in the experience of being grad school/early career aged- too old to be young and too young to be old. It’s an odd stage of life, but a fun one to share.

#84 A Day at MIUSA

25 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

This is a typical day at my internship, where the bulk of what I do consists of research, planning meetings and events, and dusting off my Spanish for some translation work.

And here is my desk, with the light reading of a copy of Mexico’s National Development Plan for Persons with Disabilities over the next few years.

#85 Visitors Visit Eugene

26 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

So this has been a pretty fun weekend.

We’ve had some visitors.

#86 The Portland Weird

27 March 2015 // Portland, Oregon

Took everybody up to PDX yesterday for a quick daytrip of food trucks, bookstores, and coffee.

Getting to show guests around two cities makes things all the more fun.

#87 Climbing Spencer’s Butte

28 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Got to take everybody up to one of our favorite hikes in town, Spencer’s Butte.

And for those who reluctantly made their way up to the top, there were waffles waiting down below.

#88 Chinese Buffet

29 March 2015 // Springfield, Oregon

Our first batch of visitors left for Sacramento/Santa Barbara early in the morning. Passing them on the way up were Deanna’s parents, coming to town for the week.

We went out to a Chinese buffet the night when they first got here. I haven’t been to one of these types of restaurants in a long time. I forgot how much fun they could be.

#89 Trout

30 March 2015 // Leaburg, Oregon

My soon-to-be-father-in-law booked us a fishing trip on the McKenzie for a day. We got to spend a whole day, 9-5 fishing from a guided boat.

I landed my first fish, along with about a half-dozen others. It was a great day for fishing in every sense, the sun was out, we had eagles and ospreys perched and flying overhead, and the fish traffic was plentiful since the flies were spawning.

#90 Start of Spring Quarter

31 March 2015 // Eugene, Oregon

Began my third quarter of grad school with a class today. This term is looking pretty good in terms of schedule and everything, which I intentionally worked out to allow for wedding planning and book releasing.


Philippe Lazaro365