Friday, February 25, 2005


I LOVE LOVE LOVE ER! I think it’s my favorite tv show of all time, even above F*R*I*E*N*D*S (Ooooh shocker!)! I’ve watched every single episode religiously since the pilot in 1994 when I was a JUNIOR IN HIGH SCHOOL! I remember during that first episode, Jhoette called and told him, “Dude, I’ll call you later, I’m watching ER. YOU should be watching this too future doctor!” 11 years later, I still look forward to every Thursday night at 10:00 and Jhoette, wouldn’t you know it, is in med school.

Every episode has a life of its own. There are days when poignancy is key, from newborn babies dying minutes after birth, to a man’s diagnosis of lung cancer after years of smoking, to model doctors leaving the ER behind. There are also days that scream triumph, like seeing a med student through their various rotations and then seeing them become doctors. The show invites all types of emotions; done simply by making the audience care about the characters through riveting story lines that just get to the core of the human spirit.

Last night’s episode was particularly heartbreaking, yet heartwarming at the same time, with newly baptized doctor Neela at County General in Chicago and marine Dr. Gallant, stationed in the Middle East, channeling their experiences in a letter narrated throughout the show. Clever! Ate Tin-Tin and I always have a post-ER discussion at 11:00 pm. Sometimes we’re crying, sometimes we’re angry and sometimes we’re laughing. Last night Ate wanted to hurl because of all the gore in yesterday’s episode (You ok now ate?), but she loved it nonetheless. Rochelle’s barely getting into the show now and I love talking to her about it, especially because she recognizes some of the medical jargon and procedures! Any ER fans out there? Let’s talk!

Wednesday, February 23, 2005


We had our annual wellness bloodtests today. For some reason, it's hard to find a "juicy" vein in my arm from which doctors and nurses can draw a good amount of blood. Last year, the lady who took our blood freakin' probed the needle under my skin (think Matrix) and STILL couldn't get enough blood in the vial so she poked at my other arm!!!

Luckily the nurse today found a way and she got enough blood in those tubes for testing. Unfortunately, I bruise like a peach and there's an unsightly red, blue and purple-looking gash on my left arm, right where my elbow bends...and I'm being such a baby about it cuz it freakin' hurts! And I wanted to be a doctor! Me, the wussy!

Monday, February 21, 2005


You know what friends are? Friends are people who will drive from all distances to have lunch and then walk around in the rain with you if that’s what you planned to celebrate your birthday. That’s exactly what we did Sunday afternoon. 8 hours in Pasadena! Lunch at Kabuki Japanese Restaurant was fun, especially the part when the waiter asked Rochelle if I was “of age” to be downing that sake bomb! Hahaha…I’M 27 YOU FREAK! Yup, after that ONE DRINK (and half of a sake shot that Cile asked me to finish) I was blushing like a peach, scratching a little bit and my eyes seemed to close in on me. Thank goodness for the walk in the rain. The cold air was a big help!

I wasn’t in much of a shopping mood yesterday but I did enjoy watching everyone else. The number of hours we spent at Hooters was pretty memorable too. We all sat there, for the most part, watching the All-Star game, drinking, eating, talking. The Hooters girls had me stand on a chair and do the YMCA with them. Suffice it to say, all my womanly insecurities came screaming back at me each second I spent in there. Could I have FELT more inadequate? Hahaha…it was a fun time had by all, though, and that’s what made the day all the more worthwhile.

Ending the evening with old videos was truly…what’s the word?…depressing. HA HA! Just kidding! It was fun. Despite bringing me back to what was probably one of the most awkward times of my life (with the eyeglass frames that literally covered half my face!), I can’t say it wasn’t nice to look back on that same time in which I have such fond memories. Yes it was a long time ago (9 years to be exact), and I still can’t believe I’m 27 years old. But I’m grateful, content and excited for what’s to come in my life. I hope all this rain is symbolic for a downpour of good fortune. That’d be nice, wouldn’t it?

Friday, February 18, 2005

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Wednesday, February 16, 2005

OT in overtime. Man! I don't even do overtime at the office where I actually work and today, up here in Concord, I had to stay an hour and a half over to finish up! Oh well, can't say that extra time and a half won't be appreciated. I can't believe that stack of papers I literally had to attack this morning! And just as I was getting it down to an inch or so throughout the course of the day, someone came to plop down another 3 inches of work! Holy crap! But it's cool because I'm glad I could help. I just didn't realize they were THAT behind on that stuff I was working on.

I had fun up here though, despite the carpel tunnel-inducing movements which never fail to get in the way. The staff here in our Concord office are made up of just chicks who are so much fun to be around. They even threw me a little belated birthday party this afternoon, complete with balloons, noise-popper thingies and a birthday cake (Tres leches! My favorite!)!

Then for dinner Tito Paul, Tita Mayette and Megan took me to dinner at this fancy, schmancy Italian restaurant called Massimo's in Walnut Creek (it's like a Pasadena. I love it there!) where I had a delish linguini and prawns on the office Visa. This is the perk for traveling for work isn't it, freebies!

Tomorrow I work until about 3 pm and then head back to Oakland airport because my flight leaves at 5:45 pm (hopefully on time) and I'll be home in lots of time for ER!

Funny Story That Proves Anna's Ineffectiveness Around Cute Guys

On Tuesday morning, I left my car at Lot A and took a shuttle to the airport. On the way there, this really cute guy sat next to me. He was kinda tall, dirty blonde hair, wearing a long-sleeve slate blue button-down and navy blue slacks (gee Anna, could you BE anymore of a stalker?) When we got to the airport, he was in line behind me at the x-ray/metal detector things. I was like, "oh man if this guy is on my flight, I'LL DIE!" So my boss and I are in line A at Gate 6 and I casually, breezily, scan to see if that cute guy was on my flight. Alas, nowhere in sight. On the plane I'm talking to my boss and suddenly get distracted because (be still my heart) MR. CUTE GUY'S WALKING DOWN THE AISLE LOOKING FOR A SEAT! DANGIT JACK, WHY DID YOU HAVE TO SIT NEXT TO ME! And then when we got off the plane, I saw him talking on the phone by the escalators. I waved "good-bye" to him in my head. =( IF WE'RE ON THE SAME FLIGHT TOMORROW...AAAAAAAAAAHHHHH! Too bad I'm not slick! Should I pull the "do you have the time?" line on him? Does that even work?! hahaha....oh man....

Tuesday, February 15, 2005


I swear I feel like I live on a plane because after a week on solid ground, I had to take to the skies for another ride on Southwest Airlines this morning. I'm helping out our Concord office until Thursday afternoon and I'm staying over with my Tita Mayette, Tito Paul and Megan in rainy Martinez, CA.

This day has been so random. I flew over here with my boss, Jack (who I sometimes forget is my boss because he's such a goofball when he's not trying to get business out of people). And then we met up with two of our VP's who flew in from Kansas City, MO; Herb, our COO and Bryan, our CFO. I was truly curious as to what the car ride from Oakland Airport to the office would be like with these superiors of mine. I sometimes get that anxious, paranoid feeling when it comes to dealing with people on whom my financial livelihood depends. But I have to say that it was actually pretty cool. Although, I actually noticed a few stares from people who might've been thinking, "what is this little asian girl doing with these 3 white guys?" hahaha...Cracked me up inside! I had to laugh to myself for a good part of the car ride because they talked the most typical guy talk you could ever hear: sports and cars.

Then they checked into their hotel and we had lunch with the office manager from our Concord office, Remelie. It was a welcome relief to have another woman in their company, I must say.

I worked until 5:00 pm, at which time Tita Mayette (who works at the office) took me to this Japanese restaurant, Matsu Sushi for dinner. 'Lo and behold who comes to join us 15 minutes after our arrival? Jack, Herb and Bryan! Tito Paul and Megan came shortly after. So there we were, the 7 of us, having dinner together. How weird! But I can't say how nice of an experience it's been to have spent this much time with our VP's, who, I've been reminded, aren't just Vice Presidents of a large company. They're 2 regular guys, sports entusiasts, who have families they love talking about. It's comforting to know that bosses are people too.

Monday, February 14, 2005


"What is this thing called Love? What? Is this thing called Love? What is this thing called? Love." - Cole Porter defines love as "a deep, tender, ineffable feeling of affection and solicitude toward a person, such as that arising from kinship, recognition of attractive qualities, or a sense of underlying oneness." Wow! All that technical jargon to describe a feeling I don't even think can be illustrated in any other medium other than pure emotion.With only six words and a playful use of punctuation, Cole Porter more appropriately shows love to be just what it is: indescribable. Whether it's a heaviness or light of heart you feel, love has a way of making itself known in the most creative of ways from the most various of sources: a parent, a sibling, a friend, a boy/girlfriend, a grandchild, a grandparent, a co-worker…even a stranger.

A lot of people don’t believe that love can come from someone you’ve never met. But I have this faith that tells me that there are people in this world who are so full of love and kindness inside of them, that they emanate it with one glance, one touch, one sound. That’s the person we should all strive to be, for true, honest, genuine love knows no limits.

Valentine’s Day isn’t a holiday designated to promote the gift of love. We should be promoting such greatness daily. Today is the day we CELEBRATE love and our privilege of having so much around us, even if we sometimes don’t see it right away.

I can’t say enough for the gifts of love I have in MY life. This weekend gave me more reasons to believe how much this is so. Whether it’s an evening out with friends for a movie, late dinner and show, or an afternoon lunch with the family, or a text or phonecall greeting me Happy Birthday, I KNOW that my cup of love overflows. Thanks so much to everyone who made this birthday and Valentine’s day the special days that they are. I know love only because of all of you!

Sunday, February 13, 2005


I watched Jamie Foxx on Inside the Actor’s Studio tonight and I discovered (and re-discovered) so much of myself in that hour than I have many a given days in the last 27 years of my life. I listened to him speak fondly about his childhood as I reflected on mine. I heard him allude to his grandmother (God rest her soul) every two minutes, citing her as the woman who gave him his “life’s tools” as I recalled every person who has ever made a difference in MY life. He spoke about the day he realized that the world around him was not as contained and straightforward as he had once thought. I listened to Jamie Foxx recount his life’s experiences; his moments of struggle, his moments of victory and his future, and I found myself saying, “Wow, that’s where I wanna be! I wanna be where he is in his life right now.” And then I heard it in my head: You’re there. You’re here. You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be right this minute at this time in your life.

I turned 27 years old today, and for the last few days I’ve been feeling the dread that comes with the joy that each birthday brings. I feel that muscle in my body ache just a little more and I hear that biological clock ticking much louder than it did 24 hours ago. My vision seems a tad bit compromised even with the corrective lenses, and the absent-mindedness is kicking at half-force. But I feel something else happening too. Acceptance.

Many people confuse “acceptance” with “settling.” I know because I was one of those people. But one has nothing to do with the other. “Settling, “ to me, suggests that when we are faced with a circumstance in our lives that we don’t feel we can manipulate to our benefit, we take it as is because we feel we have no choice, and let it stagnate like a fog over our lives as we complain and moan that we somehow got cheated. “Acceptance,” on the other hand, is practiced when we are confronted with a circumstance that may not be ideal to us at the moment, but in which we CHOOSE to find great potential for manageability and growth. I KNOW I’m not getting any younger. Time is a circumstance no living being on earth can contend with. I think after 27 years, I’ve finally accepted that.

I accept that all the dreams and all the fantasies I had about adulthood while I was growing up (love, career, spirituality, etc) may never incarnate in this lifetime the way I envisioned they would. And I’m happy to say that it’s because the little girl who had those dreams and fantasies GREW UP! She’s 27 years old now, an active part of a world she couldn’t have imagined in the same context as the world she knew back then. Today her world is bigger, filled with more opportunity to do and to find good than she could ever have hoped for and…well, I can’t wait to see what she can do with the tools her life gave her:

Strength, Courage & Wisdom
India Arie

Inside my head there lives a dream that I want to see in the sun
Behind my eyes there lives a me that I've been hiding for much too long
'Cause I've been, too afraid to let it show
'Cause I'm scared of the judgment that may follow
Always putting off my living for tomorrow
It's time to step out on faith, I've gotta show my faith
It's been illusive for so long, but freedom is mine today
I've gotta step out on faith, It's time to show my faith
Procrastination had me down but look what I have found, I found...

Strength, courage, and wisdom
And it's been inside of me all along
Strength, courage, and wisdom
Inside of me

Behind my pride there lives a me, that knows humility
Inside my voice there is a soul, and in my soul there is a voice
But I've been, too afraid to make a choice
'Cause I'm scared of the things that I might be missing
Running too fast to stop and listen

I close my eyes and I think of all the things that I want to see
'Cause I know, now that I've opened up my heart I know that
Anything I want can be, so let it be, so let it be

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Friday, February 11, 2005



Tin and I arrived in 32 degree Charlotte, NC at 7 am on Friday morning. We spent a good part of the day driving to and from the airport because us Bautista cousins came from all over the place (Glendale, Sacramento, Seattle, Dayton, Cincinnati, San Francisco). We barely get to see each other every other year for reunions (if that at all), so when we get an opportunity such as Alan’s wedding to come together, we take advantage at full force. It doesn’t matter what we’re doing. Whether we’re picking someone up from the airport, running last minute errands, hurrying to the mall for a quick shopping mission, getting through a wedding rehearsal or spending an evening in a hotel room with the groom the night before the wedding, it’s never idle time for us because we’re together. It’s a blessing we never take for granted and this weekend only proved with much conviction how strong the bonds of family are, even across the miles. I miss my cousins and my aunts and uncles so much!
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Alan & Stephanie’s Day

There was a warning early last week that the weekend of February 5th would bring undeniably cold weather with a possibility of snow. Last year in February, Charlotte experienced an ice storm so bad it blew the power out for a few days. Alan said he didn’t mind snow, as long as it didn’t show up on his wedding day. The heavens must’ve heard his lament because February 5, 2005 was filled with as much sunshine outdoors as there was indoors.

You can’t cloud up a wedding day when you’ve got my cousin, Alan, the calmest groom I’ve ever seen, and his bride Stephanie, glowing in all her radiant beauty, in sight. A vision of the truest love I’ve ever witnessed, they embodied the end of a soul search, and at the same time marked the beginning of a new adventure as husband and wife.
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It wouldn’t do justice for me to recount, with mere words, the emotion they induced in so many of us as we looked on; Stephanie walking up the aisle, arms clutched tightly around her father’s, as Alan stood by the altar, lip quivering at the sight of his bride. I can’t describe the sincerity and passion evoked as the bride and groom seemed to drown in each other’s eyes as they vowed to cherish each other as long as they both shall live.

From the moment they joined hands at the altar, to each flash of the camera, from the trolley ride to the reception, to their first dance as a married couple, I knew this was a day no one would soon forget. And it won’t be the flower arrangements we’ll recall, or the fancy dresses people wore; nor will we remember the food we ate or the drinks they served. What we WILL remember are the two people whose new lives we helped celebrate that day. We’ll remember with fondness our part as family and friends in their new beginning. And most of all, we’ll recall, with smiles on our faces and laughter in hearts, the new memories we’ve added to the scrapbooks in our minds, realizing more than ever that our all-to-frequent good-byes only allow us to look forward to forthcoming hellos.
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Thursday, February 10, 2005

Happy Happy 18th Birthday to my cousin, Keeeesh!!!
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Wednesday, February 09, 2005


I haven't blogged cuz I've been sick and tired and lezy. I think I'll take care of that tonite after Ash Wednesday mass. Did anyone eat meat today? If you did and you're Catholic, Ops! So what's everyone doing for Lent? I think I'm going to try something different this year. Instead of "giving up" something (like I have in the past; sweets, rice, cussing, etc), I'm going to try to "do" something or something more (like wake up earlier and say the rosary, or take better care of my finances, take better care of my health) - a CONSCIOUS effort this time so I'm not just doing it for the sake of doing it because it's Lent and I'm SUPPOSED to, but do it as an offering to God. Sound corny? For some reason when it's done during Lent (as oppose to a New Year's resolution), it means something more. I don't know.

So anyhow, more blogging to come! Can't wait to tell you all about my weekend in Charlotte, NC!!

Thursday, February 03, 2005

IN THE SKY AGAIN (As in “On the road again” Get it?…man that was cornball)

Man, I've been blogging like a maniac this week, haven't I?

So anyhow, I actually LIKE packing. What I hate is UNpacking, but packing I don’t mind so much. I’m usually very practical AND tactical when it comes to making things fit into a suitcase. For some reason though, last night I was like spastic because I couldn’t figure out what to bring. Poor Tin was trying to do her homework and I was bugging her every 10 minutes because I didn’t know what to pack! We brought sweaters, scarves, and long sleeves galore because, according to my Tita Grace, it might snow on Friday and Saturday’s temperature is forecasted to go from 57 degrees in the daytime to 37 DEGREES!!! Wow! I’m excited though! I’m all about winter wardrobe!

My sister and I are flying to Charlotte, NC tonight because our cousin, Alan is getting married. I can’t believe it was December of 2003 when he was telling me how he was planning to propose and this Saturday ALREADY, he’s gonna be someone’s husband! I can’t believe it!

Okay then, I hope you all have a happy and enjoyable weekend! I'll talk to y'all (practicing my southern drawl) when we get back. Be safe!

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


GOD, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time,
Enjoying one moment at a time
Accepting hardship as the pathway to peace.

Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it.

Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will
That I may be reasonably happy in this life,
and supremely happy with Him forever in the next. Amen

-Reinhold Neibuhr-1926

I see this prayer EVERYWHERE; on keychains, posters, greeting cards, etc. But this is the first time I’ve ever really READ it.

You know, in spite of the material wealth we think we deserve, our endless desire to earn an income without having to work so hard for it and our incessant hope to have everything and everyone we want, when we want it and the way we want it, I think for the most part, all of us really and truly seek just one thing: some peace in our lives.

We may not so much want the mansion and fancy cars as much as we want the confidence and pride that come along with it. I don’t think we want to be unemployed loafers living solely on others’ charity, but I know we all wish we could do something we love to do and happen to get paid for it, instead of doing something we loathe BECAUSE we HAVE to. And as far as getting who and what we want, I think sometimes we can get weary of having to work so hard to attain, and then maintain our human need for love and affection; sometimes putting in more than we receive.

It’s hard and there are times when you want to just scream at how unfair life can be. But it’s these times, when you’ve spent all your energy complaining that you just kind of let go because that’s all you can do. It’s then that we try to accept our world as it is, unfair and all. When we finally reach this acceptance, that’s when we’ll feel it: peace and serenity of life.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005


I got my very first birthday present tonight! Iya and Chris took me to the Lakers-Blazers game and I had soooo much fun! It's so weird how fast a live game goes by compared to when you watch it on tv at home. The game today seemed to just whiz by! Hooray for the Lakers man! Suffice it to say they've had a tough year. Rudy T's teetering over his resignation because of his health AND also because he doesn't know what to do with this team. He doesn't have an Olojuwan here like he did in Houston and I think that's a big challenge for him, but I'm no expert. Anyhow, I'm just glad they won tonight. Caron Butler's got some moves man (Doesn't he look like Pharell?)!

Thanks sooooo much Iya & Chris! I had great time!

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I just had the most insightful conversation with my classmate from elementary school tonight. Adriana and I have been friends since we first stepped onto that playground at St. Francis of Assisi School in 1982. We were only five years old (Actually I was five and she was four because her birthday wasn’t until Halloween). Anyhow, all throughout high school, then college until now, we’ve still managed to keep in touch no matter where our careers have led us or no matter how many times we’ve moved. It never seems to make a difference where we are in life because we always find each other somehow.

Some may ask what makes this so special. Well, I know how very blessed I am to have friends and family who are around me all the time, caring and loving me in the most special way they know how. But to know someone from your almost long forgotten past, and still remain to hold a conversation with him/her without unconsciously creating uncomfortable silences? That’s so rare. And Adriana and I don’t just “chew the fat,” we’ve talked about a hundred different things, all of them matters we hold dear. What a rare gift this true friendship is.

There are seriously times when I ask God how I could possibly deserve the blessings that I have; given to me in the abundant portions in which I receive them. But there are also times when I’m consciously being very selfish, wishing I had more than I already do, sounding as ungrateful as I possibly could. I know heaven hears me and that’s when I fear that all the blessings I have are going to be taken away. Yet I wake up the following day, and the day after that…and then the day after that one, and here you all are, still present in my life. What miracles could be truer?

Getting to know...
Met by the lunch tables on our first day of kindergarten at St. Francis of Assisi School in 1982 = 23 years and counting
Role In My Life: Real-Life Childhood Friend – Like I mentioned in my last entry, Adriana and I have known each other since we were wee little gals in our plaid jumpers running around the jungle gym during recess and lunch. Every single time we see each other, it’s always such a wonderful moment that brings me back to all the times in our lives when responsibilities were few and simplicity of life ruled! Adriana is one of those friends you can lose touch with for 2 years and then get a random phonecall from one day and it’s as if you’d spoken just an hour before.
Good Times: Adriana is the very first person who made me realize how obsessive compulsive I am. She probably doesn’t remember this, but I do, and every time I recall this event I can’t help but laugh. When we were in kindergarten, the corner of our classroom was set up like a house. It had a small oven and dining table, a cradle for the baby doll and drawers for the doll’s clothing. One day when playtime was over, Adriana and I were cleaning up the playhouse. I was putting plates and pans in the oven and straightening up the chair and re-folding all the dolly’s clothes that Adriana had just folded. When she saw me she was like, “AMMA LISSA (She seriously thought my name was “Amma”) I JUST FOLDED THAT! WHY DO YOU KEEP REDOING EVERYTHING I’M DOING!” hahaha…oh man, talk about adolescent OCD.
In her own words: “Why do you eat like that?” (ME: “Like what?”) “With a fork and a spoon? That’s weird!” At 5 years old this was my first taste of cultural differences.