Monday, September 19, 2011

We Left Her in Irvine

We watched Shannon walk away...

Saturday, September 17, 2011
Purchased printer, textbook for Shannon and souvenirs (hats, sweatshirts, t-shirt) for the rest of us at the UCI Bookstore
Purchased bicycle for Shannon.
Bought little things such as Coke, bottled water, tylenol, etc. for Shannon
Played Civilization 5  (Tim's is still winning)
Brahms led devotions at the hotel lobby.
Ronnie and Irene Lim delivered the fridge, that we stored at their house, to the hotel.

Once they were always together...

(Leonard is a doll that Miriam made for her sister. We tucked him under her bed cover before we left the Shire.)

How can a parent prepare for a time as this?

Only by trust and faith in God and the confidence on our child. 

Sunday, September 18, 2011
7:00  Breakfast at Embassy Suites, Irvine.
8:30 New Song Church, Shannon went to sign her name to indicate her intention to volunteer at the Children's ministry.
9:00   Worship Service at New Song.   Shannon met people in the New Song College group. Talked to the college pastor Abe Park.
11:00  We helped Shannon move in to Middle Earth Housing.
12:30  We went out to eat lunch together at Carl's Jr.
2:00  Dropped her off at the Berkeley Place Parking lot.  We hugged and said goodbyes and watched her walk towards Middle Earth.
2:15   We drove back home and arrived at about 10:30 pm. 

She now lives so far away from us - 8 hr-drive on I-5

Everyone is sad that there are only four people in our family now.  Miriam teared up several times at the thought of not having her sister with her anymore.  Brahms regrets that the only person he knew ever since he was born (other than mommy and daddy) is not with him anymore. 

This is Shannon's time to try her wings and see how they fare out there.  We've done all we can to prepare her for this time.  May God be with my daughter always...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Brahms is Sixteen Today

It is hard to believe but it has been sixteen years ago when a 10.4 pound baby was born to us.  Now he is a young man with so much energy and enthusiasm to learn.  As a junior in high school, he is taking five AP (Advance placement) classes and an engineering class.  He is a hard-working student.   When he is not studying, he would be reading, working as a tutor, writing a blog, playing bass in youth band, helping in children's ministry at church,  taking pictures, making YouTube videos, learning to play banjo, reading John Piper's "Think", planning his next trip, mowing the lawn, telling us what he just read, playing MineCraft, writing, making mazes, looking for food from the fridge, and many more.

 Brahms is a kind, considerate, and self-controlled guy. I am very proud to be his mother.  I thank God for He gave us the greatest son we could ever have. 

Tonight we are going to celebrate at his favorite hamburger place - Mels.  (We are just waiting for Tim to arrive from helping the Neff family move from Rescue to their new house in Coloma.) Instead of a cake Brahms requested for homemade apple pie.  I made a ten-inch apple pie and it will be served with vanilla ice cream. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Time with Sue


Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art (for God did not need to create).  It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.   ~ C.S. Lewis  
Sue and I took the time to catch with each other by getting lunch at Togo's today.  Life does not seem right when we do not get to talk to each other for a week.  We lose track of what's going on in each other's life and that doesn't settle well with either of us.  So we go out and do something together and share.  We talked about the kids, church, why we both do not work,  our spouses, their jobs, and chores we have not finished.  It is always refreshing getting-together with her.  

Monday, September 12, 2011

Speaker at IDF

Tim acknowledges that God is the source of all his great ideas.

As in previous years, Tim was invited to speak at the IDF 2011 in San Francisco this year. He will be presenting with Vincent Zimmer on UEFI - both guys are world-experts on this technology.
Although the conference won't start till tomorrow, Tim had to leave today for technical rehearsal and set-up of his equipment.

Shannon, our daughter who is working as his intern, was a great help.  Unfortunately (for Tim) she will soon go to college to study computer game science.  :)

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Great America

We left the house at 7:30 this morning on a mission to have a thrilling experience at Great America.  Brahms asked the family to do this to pre-celebrate his 16th birthday.  It was a brilliant idea. 

It has been a long time since we went there as a family -  Brahms and Shannon remember all their earlier experiences of the place but Miriam was a little girl she could not even remember going there.  Now she's tall enough to be able to go into all the rides.  She had a blast.  During the course of the day, she had thanked us (her father and mother) many times for bringing the family to Great America. 

Shannon and Brahms took the ultimate thrill ride - the 'Xtreme Skyflyer' together.  Bundled and strapped together, they were attached to this thin string.  They told us later that as they were being raised up high into the sky they were telling each other their regrets for dying so soon.  

Shannon:  "I would have loved to have gone to college..."
Brahms:  "I wished that I had turned sixteen before I died." 

Fortunately, they made it down safely. 

This is the first time that we had gone to Great America when I went in almost all the rides.  (I skipped the 'Demon' because I was a bit scared looking at the very twisty tracks.)  All those years, I was with a small child who could only ride the children's ride like the Carousel.  My kids are grown up now.  The rides provided me a chance to let my adrenalines flow in dramatic doses.  I realized that I had not screamed so loud in a long time.  I must have screamed during the whole course of every ride.  Sometime I had my eyes closed because I did not want to see what was coming. 

Unlike me, Tim is always very quiet in all the rides.  He is always doing some daring things like raising his hands up instead of holding on tightly.  He is the expert on all these rides because he has been riding most of these since he was a young boy.  I still remember when we were newly married and we went in the Orbit (back then it was called the New Orleans Orbit).  He tickled me during the whole course of the ride.  I had no time to feel scared of the ride because I was too busy laughing.  From that time on I did not want him to ride with him anymore. 

We had all the fun today but we also lost one thing.  Tim dropped his eyeglasses while we were in the 'FireFall'.  Zippered bags were provided but he refused to put his glasses there.  So down into the water below went his spectacles.  Normally,  my reaction is to worry about them but this time I was suspended upside-down very high up above the water - I was more worried about surviving than anything else.

Overall, it was a very fun day.  We thank God for everything - experience, provision, safety, and lessons learned.  I learned that those thrill rides provide a taste of real life. Life is not always smooth-sailing.  Sometimes it gets scary and it seems that the world is coming to an end but then the direction of life shifts and your original fear is replaced by another one.  Right when you are getting used to and enjoying the sequence of these fearful events, the ride stops and life is over.  I also learned that when the rides are smoothly going, it is time to brace up.  That's what makes life interesting and fun.   :)