Tag Archives: meeting new people

Life: Picture it NOW

In my brain-fried state of mind after a long day of work and whatever else life throws my way, I find myself  “facebooking”, a verb I predict will be added to the dictionary in the near future BTW.

After flipping through my news feed, I was still mind-numb and didn’t feel like sleeping, so I flipped through my own pictures to reminisce on old times. Something i’m sure, and hope, everyone does once in a while.

I want you to take a minute and section out your day with what you do with your time.

For me, an average 24 hour work day goes like this..

7 hours sleep, 2  hours getting ready and driving, 8 hours work,  3 hours errands/pets/house/dinner maintenance, 3 hours homework/grading/planning,  1 hour of relaxing/getting ready to fall asleep… and repeat.  That’s only if I don’t have other things I need to do, like coach after school, or get the car fixed, etc.

Random weekend canoe and off-road adventure trip in Gladwin, Michigan
Random weekend canoe and off-road adventure trip in Gladwin, Michigan

When looking at the pictures, click after click,  I had a mini epiphany realizing that WOW, I’ve had a crazy, adventurous, fun life with awesome people… but how could that be?




When I take a snapshot of what my average day looks like, I realize that I’ve barely set aside any time at all to even have a life, but somewhere in chaos, I made a choice.


Ended up running the Detroit Half Marathon by myself, the view was worth it :)
Ended up running the Detroit Half Marathon by myself, the view was worth it 🙂

When I seemed too busy to even fathom doing anything besides what I need to do, I chose to do what I want to do instead.

I’ve made choices to live instead of exist.

Life is not your job, house, or stuff. Life comes in the moments in-between what normally fills our day and mind. So even though you have endless responsibilities, set time to actually do what you want and enjoy life, because if you’re not… then what’s the point of all work you put into it?

Everyone needs to make a living, but most people forget to actually live in the life they work so hard to make.

So I post a challenge to everyone reading this,  I want you to make a choice to do something that makes you happy instead of something productive… and take a picture of it. 

Better yet… reminisce with your own pictures tag any pictures of you making the choice to live instead of exist, it will help stir up the ambition that’s in all of us!

If you have Instagram, tag the picture with #time2beAmbitious.  If you don’t have Instagram, tag the Facebook page Time2beAmbitious in your picture.

Happy tagging 🙂 I look forward to seeing everyone live!



Culture Shock: Something Everyone Should Experience

With the holiday mixed with getting some kind of terrible sickness, I’ve decided to re-blog a flash from the past of my arrival to Japan.  This is more of a fun read, but hopefully it will inspire readers to experience a new world for themselves. 🙂

DSCF5573After a jolty and uneasy flight on an old Delta Airline plane (old as in no music or TVs available to our own private use, which apparently, some people were expecting) we exhaustedly exited the plane after 12 hours, a fairly shorter time than expected.  Everything was happening so fast, I couldn’t believe that I just up and left everyone and now I’m in Japan.  The good thing was that I was with a bunch of people experiencing the same phenomenon. We had plenty of guidance from JET volunteers to help greet and point us in the right direction.

DSCF5557We had one chance to re-arrange luggage and use the restroom before getting on the bus, so I thought it wise to use the bathroom before going.  I step into the stall, close the door and pause. Apollo 13 didn’t have as many buttons as this toilet did.  There were buttons on the side of the toilet, and more buttons on a contraption in the wall, buttons everywhere.  I thought to play it safe and just not press anything, but then I needed to flush.  How was I supposed to know which one is flush?  Everything is in Japanese, and the corny pictures didn’t help either… I stood in the stall, studying the buttons, frantically trying to find the right one and resisting the urge to yell “Houston we have a problem” to my friend outside the bathroom.  Frustrated and ready to give up, I put the seat down, and what do you know, a regular, western style toilet lever shined in my eyes. So of course, my first culture shock experience happened to be in the bathroom before I even stepped foot outside the Airport.

The next few days at orientation were a mix of jet-lag and overwhelming amounts of information.  Tokyo was very busy and I was able to go out with my friend who had a friend who knows Tokyo very well.  It took a while to find the restaurant, and I didn’t wear the right shoes for walking around, but we finally came to a little narrow door that led us to a small case of winding stairs, Harry Potter style.  At the end of the stairs, we came to the opening of a small restaurant, but between us and the entrance was a small pond with stepping stones, there were even fish in the water swimming around the stones that we were stepping on.

dscf5591I couldn’t eat, or sleep on the plane, so I wasn’t feeling the greatest.  Lara’s friend did all the ordering because we couldn’t speak Japanese, and the server just kept bringing plate after plate of very… unique foods.  I was a trooper and tried everything at least once, including raw squid and a little fish with the eyes and tails still on it, nothing suited my stomach. It was too much to take in at once, so I waited patiently until everyone had their fill and we took the same route back home to the hotel.  I collapsed on the bed at about 12:30.  When I opened my eyes, I look at the clock, and groan.  Its only 4:30….  I get up, shower, and get ready to start another jam packed day.

I was relieved to see cereal, finally something I could stomach!  DSCF5599Unfortunately, I had a pretty bad case of JET lag and had to go lay down after the first meeting.  I slept through lunch and almost missed dinner, which didn’t really matter anyway because they had Japanese food, and I still couldn’t handle it.  In the evening, our Kagoshima Prefecture spent some money and bonding time doing Karaoke, you know… “when in Rome”.  The people in our group are great, very kind, and very British!  There were only 3 of us who were American in our little group, so it was cool to be around those accents all the time.

DSCF5622When Karaoke was over, we went to the hotel and tried our best to sleep, but didn’t succeed…  We had helpful workshops and information given to us during the day, and then in the evening, I had the opportunity to meet up with an American family.  My roommate Stephanie and I went out to eat with them (I had udon soup, which was very bearable).  They then took Steph, their daughter, and I up an amazing skyscraper where we were able to see all of Tokyo from the top of the building.  The whole floor had large glass windows in which we saw the amazing lights of Tokyo extending farther than the horizon would let us see.  It was beautiful.

The pictures I took unfortunately don’t do the experience justice, DSCF5670but if you are to view Tokyo, I highly recommend going to a tall building and look out the windows at night.  It made New York seem like a baby.  After another long day, Steph and I went back to the hotel to get ready to depart for our actual home in Japan, Kagoshima!

This was written by me over 4 years ago, I have a few other posts from my blog in Japan, but those are for another time.  See you next week!

Taking a poll for my new post, please help me out!