January 31, 2014

happy weekend + links {the lunar new year edition}

happy friday! happy lunar new year!

i know it's more widely known as chinese new year, but it's celebrated in many countries in asia and southeast asia, hence, i like to ring it in by saying lunar new year.

did you know that it's the year of the horse? and i'm a horse! {throw confetti}

my mom used to tell me that she hoped i would be born the year after, when it was the year of the sheep. she said there was a stigma of girls who were born as a horse because they would be carefree, bold, strong and all the things that women weren't supposed to be. not that she thought those characteristics were bad, but she worried that having them as a girl in a society that deemed those qualities as not good, i would live a life unfairly judged and critiqued. i think times have changed a bit since her worries. thanks goodness because horses are kinda neat. {not being biased here. i promise.}

i remember when it was the year of the horse 12 years ago {2002}, i was like 22, and i thought it was going to be the best year of my life. it turned out pretty uneventful. but! hopefully this year will be different...?

anyhow, i totally forgot to buy ingredients to make some rice cake soup so we're going to have our bowls over the weekend. i remember being part of big family celebrations with lots of lunar new year related food and games. not so much anymore. hopefully when we are blessed with children of our own we can get those traditions rollin again. 

in the meantime, i thought to share a bit of lunar new year awesomeness as part of our weekend links. i hope you can either relate to these or that they can serve as something to help you get to know a bit more about this wonderful holiday. it's not a comprehensive list by any means. if you know of any other ways lunar new year is celebrated in different countries, please share! i would love to know. also sprinkled in are just some other "horsey" types of links. i couldn't resist. 

happy weekend to you! 

 // pictures from cities worldwide preparing for lunar new year celebrations.

 // what does the year of the horse mean? 

 //  find your animal sign

 // an amazing chinese new year menu.

 // 8 lucky foods for chinese new year. 

 // this is what we're having. 

 // and vietnamese lunar new year foods. hungry yet? 

 // a book for all children. 

 // a beautiful horse print infinity scarf

 // these stunning prints

 // and this commercial. ok. kind of not related, but there is a horse in it. and a dog. i made yangkyu and piri watch it with me five times and i bawled each time. 

from where i stand -- by mei.

// shoes: pu leather knee boots from hong kong // 

from where i stand
on a boulevard at a place called vlissingen - the netherlands with my friend.

we actually went mediating here. 
we were facing the sea and it was really quiet,
and we closed our eyes sitting crossed legged and mediated.


submitted by mei who blogs at ice pandora.
thanks mei for participating! 

see more from where i stand posts. 

*** click here to see how you can submit a photo as well! 
this series is inspired by the instagram hashtag #fromwhereistand

January 30, 2014

life lately, according to my iphone.

some instagrammed, some not. 


ps - enter our giveaway with firmoo online optics for a chance to a free pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses {your choice}! 

from where i stand -- by macy.

// shoes: bean boots from ll bean // 

from where i stand
oliver beach, maryland. 

i hear a snowball fight. 
children asking to go sledding, snow plows taking away dreams of no school for a week.
i feel calm and excited, i long for this fluffy white stuff on a cold day.


submitted by macy who blogs at to travel and beyond.
thanks macy for participating!

see more from where i stand posts. 

*** click here to see how you can submit a photo as well! 
this series is inspired by the instagram hashtag #fromwhereistand

January 29, 2014

a day with piri.

somewhere between myspace and facebook, i was addicted to something called cyworld. it was a similar type of social media platform created in korea that was widely popular. on it i had a little section called "a day with piri" or in korean "피리와 하루". there i wrote stories that happened during our outings or just little thoughts, wishes and hopes that i had for the dude. {i am currently trying to figure out my login email and password so i can retrieve those entries}

ever since switching over to facebook, my entries for "a day with piri" stopped. i tried to revive it through tumblr, and while earlier posts started out great, it slowly became a place where i ended up recycling photos i posted to instagram and not really about writing what happened during my day with piri.

i hope to revive it here and take a bit more original pictures as well. he means a world to me, and i want to be able to look back and smile at our daily interactions and moments that we shared. and in the future, i plan on making it into a little photo book titled {of course} a day with piri/피리와 하루, as a keepsake. 

i've been thinking a lot about what i used to do with my past social media platforms and old blogs. i used to also feature non-profits that i loved, week in reviews using my instagram photos designed with text and cute arrows and doodles... hopefully this little nudging will let me think of new blogging topics and revive old ones i used to enjoy. 

but in the meantime, i hope you'll enjoy "a day with piri/피리와 하루" as much as i enjoy writing about them. 

do you do any journaling for your pets? please share! 

// linking up with blogpaws wordless wednesday bloghop. 

quick! grab a copy of real simple magazine and turn to page 121.

do you read real simple magazine? if you do, you probably already saw the "you can't hurry love" feature that got your heart doing all sorts of leaps, jumps and smiles. if you don't, then grab a copy now and turn to page 121. i promise, you won't regret it. there you'll find short stories of couples who found their love after waiting 60+ years. i love reading stories like this. it's like that feeling you get when watching you've got mail or sleepless in seattle, but times 100.  

ps - thank you so much for your positive responses to the from where i stand blog post series. i look forward to receiving your pictures! 

pps - enter our giveaway with firmoo for a chance to win a pair of eyeglasses/sunglasses! closes, monday, feb. 3.

January 28, 2014

from where i stand + join me?

// shoes: salt water sandals in red from my salt water sandals // 

from where i stand
on a pretty white balcony. hilton rose hill. montego bay, jamaica.

the sun is warm, 
children are laughing from afar, 
i see fellow tourists lounging in their balconies
and i think everything is going be alright.

this series is inspired by the instagram hashtag #fromwhereistand

*** would you like to join me? 
email me at alwayswithyooblog [at] gmail [com] with a picture {size at least 570px} of where you stand and a sentence {or a few sentences} on what your thoughts were at that moment -- it could be a feeling, something you see, a song lyric that came to mind. really, anything. there is no format. 

please also include what types of shoes you are wearing, where they are from, a url of your blog, your first name and the location of your picture {it could be a name of a cafe you're at, a street name, cross streets, city/state, country or a mix of these}. i would love to feature it on my blog. it would be pretty amazing to see all the creative "where i stand" pictures from all over the world.

ps - if you haven't already, hop on over to enter this giveaway we're hosting with firmoo online optics for a chance to win a free pair of glasses/sunglasses! 

January 27, 2014

a monday giveaway with firmoo eyewear! (CLOSED)

some of my favorite pairs -- 01 // 02 // 03 // 04 // 05 

hello! i hope you all have a wonderful weekend. instead of going to watch frozen, we made a trip to a used bookstore and picked up some books. i started reading gone girl right away and i'm about half way through. it's so good. i can't wait to find out the ending. 

i've got something pretty neat for you today. i'm partnering with firmoo, a global online optics store that carries affordable and trendy eyewear, for an exciting giveaway! i did a review of one of their frames a couple of weeks ago and i'm happy to be able to share their product with you. 

one lucky reader will win a pair of free eyeglasses or sunglasses {your choice} in firmoo's classic series line. eyeglasses selected include frame plus 1.50 single vision lenses. sunglasses selected include frame plus zero-powered lenses. an additional five readers will also have a chance to win vouchers which saves 50% off selected eyewear and free shipping in the classic series. 

to enter, please browse through firmoo's classic series eyewear and comment below telling us which pair is your favorite {you must also paste the url of your favorite pair in your comment}. you can enter for a second time by sharing firmoo's first pair free webpage on your facebook account {please leave another comment telling us you have shared on your facebook}.

this giveaway will close on monday, february 3, and the winners will be chosen at random and announced shortly after. 

the grand prize winner must be from the following countries -- 
Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates,United Kingdom, United States. 
winners of the 50% vouchers must be from these following countries {includes a fuller list than above}. 

thank you for participating and good luck!  

*** note to people leaving comments as google/blogger
please make sure that your contact email is tied to your profile, otherwise, i won't be able to email you if you are selected as a winner. many emails i receive come by way of noreply-comment [at] blogger [dot] com. 

please visit this helpful tutorial to set your email up in your profile!

***the winner of firmoo's free eyewear is rowena! 
the additional five vouchers winners are pyon, damaris, krystal, kidgranny and bo. 
thank you everyone for participating and congratulations.***
a random number using random.org was generated to choose the winners 

January 24, 2014

have a wonderful weekend + links.

i think this bed was on piri's wish list for like forever. and since his other bed was tattered and old, we finally snatched this up one on sale from olive green dog. if you look, you can see a picture of piri on their website and their facebook page. what a little cutie pie {i'm not biased, am i?}

it's the weekend!

to be honest, this entire week i was off my thing. it's embarrassing because i think i've mentioned being in a funk one too many times on this blog. but the cold, coming back from a trip and not having anything in the refrigerator really threw me off my groove. this weekend i hope to fill my fridge up again, pick out some diy projects to work on for the coming weeks {valentine's day is coming after all} and go watch frozen. i think we may be the only people that have not watched it yet. i'm hearing so many great things! 

what are you all up to? anything fun? do share. i love hearing about people's plans. i'm not nosy. just curious :) 

i haven't done the whole weekend links thing in a while.. but here are a few things that caught my eye, made me laugh and feel warm all over. 

have a wonderful, wonderful weekend everyone. 

 // these red pandas make playing in the snow seem so fun. 

 // gah! this jacket

 // love this vegan kimchi recipe

 // major polaroid camera envy. 

 // here is what you can do with an empty film canister. {so clever}

 // one word: unicorns

 // i'd be invincible with a whale on my finger

 // this ad by microsoft just hits the right {90s} notes. {so nostalgic}

 // i got portland. what city did you get? 

 // one of my favorite online people just opened up an awesome print shop!

January 23, 2014

jamaica according to our phones.

can you indulge us by letting us share a few more photos from jamaica? 
this time from our phones? 

and can you believe that we took even more pictures with our instax and konstrucktor? 
someone should invent the all in one camera. it would make our lives much easier. 

January 22, 2014

away we go: montego bay, jamaica.

as i am going through the 400+ pictures we took in jamaica, narrowing them down, editing and writing this blog post, it is brutally cold outside. it's snowing and there are no signs that the strong winds will let down. i am not so secretly wishing for another snow day so that yangkyu can work from home and we can both still recuperate from our trip. {update: there was no snow day. darn.}

it's funny because the keyword for our getaway was relaxation, which is exactly what we did. unlike our trip to maui {already four years ago} where we were constantly out and barely stayed at our resort, the only thing we did was stay in our resort in jamaica. i didn't want to feel tired, worn out and take in a bajillion different things to "get the most" out of our trip. just thinking about that mentality was overwhelming. instead, i wanted to stay by the beach, read, listen to music, sleep and eat. and even though we did just that, we were still so tired and i am still trying to get back in the swing of things back home. 
we stayed at the hilton rose hill resort for three nights and four days. it's a beautiful resort with friendly staff. i feel like that sentence just didn't do justice to how friendly the staff are at the hilton rose hill. i still remember the lady who came up to us during breakfast with a sing song voice and a radiating smile as she greeted us with "pleasant morning!" i have been to resorts and spas and restaurants where staff are nice but it's almost so professional {in the stiff kind of way} and detached. in jamaica, the people are just so warm and inviting. i have a close girl friend who has several jamaican friends and has a strong affinity for the people of jamaica. she was telling me this before my trip about her love for the people and their culture. i wondered if this warmth i felt was a small taste of what she loved so much. 
it was beautiful during the morning and afternoons while we were there, but at around 4/5 pm it rained. sometimes it was a downpour, but mostly it was light showers. i was afraid that it was going to rain the entire time we were there, but we most certainly had some amazing sunshine. 

i also had an unhealthy amount of a drink called the miami vice. i had it with no alcohol. i must've had like 20 of them. on sunday, yangkyu actually counted how many i had - 7. isn't that gross? but when i'm hooked on something, i milk it for all it's worth. i did have a mango smoothie here and there so i guess it wasn't all that bad. yangkyu on the other hand had all different kinds of drinks - the hummingbird, bahama mama, bob marley, blue lagoon. i can't even remember all of them. but that basically sums us up right there - i'm the plain jane that orders the same thing like plain slice of pizza and puts a song on repeat for days while mr. adventurer over here tries something different all the time. 
when we arrived on friday, we checked in, rested, had dinner and enjoyed the live entertainment outdoors. on saturday it was a little exploring on the resort grounds and then the rest of the day we were beachside. i never go in the beach after a scary incident in high school where i was caught in a wave and literally did multiple summersaults in the water {i thought i was literally going to die}, but this time around i went in. while i did manage to drink salt water from the nose and mouth, it was fun and the sand was so soft to the touch. 

sunday it was poolside all day. they had those floating tubes, which i love. i also brought with me mindy kaling's book, is everyone hanging out without me (and other concerns), which was a quick fun read. it was just what i needed for this trip - i was able to finish it while i was there. 

and what's a trip without racking up some embarrassing/clumsy moments. i had several. i mentioned the drinking salt water from the nose and mouth already. adding to that there are, scraping both my knees, jamming my toe in the sliding balcony door, walking out of the elevator with a cool strut only to have yangkyu say... "jane, that's the third floor" and having the people getting in the elevator give you a "it's ok" smile, getting ready to exit the shuttle van only to bang my head on my way out, then lose balance and awkwardly {while trying to use my leg muscles that shaun t helped build} and desperately try hard with all my might to not fall backwards, but do anyway and land on flat on my butt... with a dress on.... while having everyone else in the van not know what to do. yeah. that one was especially embarrassing. ouch. but clumsy is my middle name and i have those kinds of incidents everywhere i go. 
this getaway to jamaica was much needed. we were able to not think about our worries, de-stress and recharge. we're thankful that we had the opportunity to go. while i don't want to sound like i'm ending this post on a sour note, i did want to mention how i let some incidents almost ruin the whole experience. i don't mean to get on a soapbox, but i think when we travel we should all step out with our best foot forward. i was appalled by some tourists who had this pompous sense of privilege and behaved so rudely to the staff. i know tourists pay their pretty penny to go and relax but i don't think that is a ticket to be rude and bossy. there were several, more than i hoped to witness, people who were exactly that way and it just left a bad impression. but what did make up for it was the friendly demeanor of the staff. i almost felt bad thinking about how much of this nonsense they have to deal with, but was amazed how they still had a smile on their face. it wasn't a smile to say "yes walk all over me", it was a dignified smile as if to say "you can't get to me that way and i will still treat you with respect". i took that as a lesson for me to take back home. be nice but firm. and always with a smile.

thanks for reading about our little trip. it was nice to recap while everything was still fresh in my memory. 

Latest Instagrams

© Winding Ridge Lane . Design by Fearne.