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Location: Northern California

Read all about the adventures of the Tsao Family during the summer of 2012

Monday, February 19, 2007


It's a beautiful day

Emily has this wonderful habit of waking us up every morning by gently exclaiming, "It's a beautiful day!" I love her positive outlook on life, and I'm adopting it for my own. She's right; it's a beautiful day!

We've had beautiful day after beautiful day lately. Certainly the weather has been beautiful with sunny skies, moderate temperatures, and a definite feeling of spring in the air. Yesterday we celebrated Chinese New Year with our family on Mike's side: his dad and mom, sister and brother-in-law and their son, and a longtime friend of the family. We all thought it was supposed to rain, but the day was bright and clear. Instead of trying to do it all, I focused my attention on table decoration and ordered the food from a local Chinese restaurant. My mother-in-law brought a carrot cake and a lemon tart for dessert and for my father-in-law's birthday. She got them at The Buttery in Santa Cruz, and they were delicious.

This morning I went for the longest run I've ever taken; I think it was four miles. I didn't feel tired at all, just energized. I ran to the far side of our subdivision, down to our local shopping center, then up the hill to our house. I enjoy running around my neighborhood because I get to see who is landscaping their yard, who is painting their house, and which flowers and trees are blooming. Right now, the plum trees are blossoming all around our city; a sure sign that spring is upon us.

Other things have been beautiful lately, too. My self-imposed blogging and writing hiatus has freed up time in my life that I've been using to hang out with family and friends, exercise and take better care of myself, and organize long-neglected closets and drawers. Last week I cleaned off the top of my dresser, during which time I had an epiphany about myself and my life. Let me see if I can explain.

Before I cleaned off my dresser, it was home to a collection of crap: old receipts, random items that had no other home, and the like. But after I cleaned it off and organized my perfumes, lotions, personal momentos, make-up, and jewelry, I realized that my dresser is the most personal reflection of my inner self. It holds many of the items that are most personal to me as well as those that I turn to when I want to transform my outward appearance. The epiphany came when I realized that I owe it to myself to keep my dresser clean simply because I am the person who will benefit from my having a clean dresser. So often I keep clean the areas of the house that are shared with others; I want to keep my dresser clean and treat myself as well as I treat other people.

It's a simple concept to realize and an important one, too. Now when I'm standing at my dresser in the morning, deciding which lotion to put on and which necklace to wear, I easily can see the things that are beautiful to me and that I love. The experience definitely helps with my outlook on life, and guess what? It is a beautiful day!