Monthly Archives: July 2013

I just got the sweetest message from our neighbor across the street…… “The apple pie was amazing. We haven’t had apple pie that good in decades!”

So grateful for her kind words. If she only knew it was my first one too. I thought what better way to meet the neighbors, then offer them homemade apple pie. I am so glad that they enjoyed it. And even more flattered that they so kindly complimented it.

As for the Cherry Pie…..Unfortunately the oven after 20 minutes or so was acting funky so I had to take  the pie out.  Long story short, once the oven was good to go and I put the cherry pie back in the oven, the crust got soggy and gross so I had to dump it. (1/1 I will take it).

So that leaves now 3 pies left to do…. but it is less intimidating now, that my pie crust worked well. (Coconut Creme, Pumpkin, Pecan are left). So much fun, and even better to share…..

As for the rest of my weekend… This morning I woke up with no alarm clock….. made some tea and sat on the front porch eating my breakfast. I got a virtual tour of my sisters new house via computer and was able to see what an incredible job they have done. Thank you technology.

Shortly after throwing in a load of laundry, my roommate and I decided to go on a run….. Our half marathon training has begun, (much to my disgust), so we thought we would go for an easy 2 mile ish run. Running has proved to be a much harder adjustment for me living back at the mile high city. (lungs yikes). We got our music play lists all ready and took off, waving goodbye to our roommate as she and her boyfriend prepped for their bike ride. (I laughed at how active our house is before 10 am).

Erin and I ran to Wash Perk, a neighborhood coffee shop/community gathering place that has stacks of magazines, newspapers, pastries, gluten free goodies, homemade ice cream, watering station for dogs anything you could desire….. its one of my many happy places in Colorado. Erin and I read the paper sipped our drinks and walked back home with our drinks in hand.

I later spent my afternoon riding my bike to complete some errands (a self imposed no driving afternoon). The sun was out it was really nice.

While standing in the front yard tonight meeting my neighbors, a moment passed and it took me right back to Honduras. Their son, who I figured was about 8 or 9 years old road by me on his scooter. I took one look at his face and saw my class. While their kids rode around on their bikes I couldn’t help but wish so deeply for just one day in my class again. Just a few minutes even.

So while I am enjoying being back in the States, transitioning as best I know how and soaking up each second reuniting with friends, my heart still longs for that crappy apartment/house that leaked, my roommates and drinking rum with powder mixers, and of course my rotten little class.

Here’s to hopefully more successful pies in my future…. and soaking up the last bit of summer left. And never forgetting that place down South….

Preparing the Apple Pie… Recipe Here. Homemade Crust Here

Cheery above without the top crust layer. Below was it with the full crust laid across.
Erin and I before our morning run.

What do you do when you don’t have to work? and all your friends are working? The following:

I have watched Sense and Sensibility (fantastic movie…to quote the movie “my heart is and always will be yours”) while drinking tea, painting my nails and laying on the couch while it rained. Watched another ESPN 30 for 30…..Gone to Yoga in the mornings for a class and in the evenings Crossfit. Mopped our floors, did laundry, cleaned out boxes, read my book and drank endless cups of green tea.  Slept in, got up early. Cleaned my car.  I have walked at Washington Park, rode my bike to REI, met for coffee with dear friends and grilled out on the back porch.I also have been lucky to spend some time with my cousin David and his wife Samantha who just moved to Denver. They as well brought my second cousin, puppy Frank 🙂 (Fingers crossed I will get to be pet sitting him when they head out of town.) The sunsets in Colorado have been incredible and it feels so nice to be back here…… (although I dearly miss my class).

But my last day of “Summer Break” as some have said to me ends today. I am excited to announce that on Monday I will be joining the Athletic Staff at Colorado Christian University. I will be working alongside the Athletic Director as an assistant. I am so grateful for the opportunity and to be back in sports.

But before reality begins I think today I may spend the day baking…. I am working on completing more of my 20 things…. I will be attempting two homemade pies…. Cherry and Apple. (Wish me luck, pray for me and I will let you know if I am successful).

Me on our front porch….

Below is the list if this is your first time visiting 🙂 (Back story of my twenty things here)

20 THINGS In year 25 

1. Read One Thousand Gifts. (with my mom, more fun to read when you have someone to share things with).
3. Complete the Whole30 Challenge (Again)
4. Run a half Marathon October 20, 2013
5. Surf in Costa Rica (Disclaimer I surfed in Nicaragua). Close 🙂
6. Make cookies for my neighbors and deliver them. 
7. Visit an Orphanage at least once a month (whether I am in Honduras or anywhere)
December 1, 2012 San Pedro Sula,   December 8, 2012 Pena Blanca,  January 28, 2013 Pena Blanca,   February 10, 2013 Pena Blanca,   March  22, 2013 Pena Blanca,  April 1, 2013 Pena Blanca ,  June 4, 2013 Pena Blanca, ……………..(note I am struggling to find an orphanage in Denver that allows visitors and guests)
8. Go camping. Real camping not car camping. 
9. Make homemade sushi
10. Have a dance party
11. Pray everyday before I go to sleep
12. Go on a weekend trip with my sister away. A city, or even in our hometown. Just she and I
13. Ride my road bike for a 100 mile ride
14. Read four Jane Austen Novels (Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Northanger Abbey, Mansfield Park) (Finished two… half way there)
15. Complete 30 days straight of yoga. Completed in January/February of this year
16. Officially kick my diet coke habit (lasted about 60 days in Honduras, got to let this one go…. I have now not had diet coke in now three weeks, which may seem like a small feat but if you lived with me you would know that this is a big deal.
17.  Learn to make pie crust, and make five homemade pies (Apple, Pumpkin, Coconut Creme, Cherry, Pecan) TODAY????
18. Drive a convertible (no stipulation on what kind of convertible)
19. Minimize my things, shrink my storage unit in Colorado, get rid of things. This is happening on Saturday June 13, 2013

20. Go Fly Fishing with my Dad.

Perhaps another year……..

2. Get scuba certified in Utila (Honduran Bay Islands)(Not so sure this will happen, I decided to not get certified over spring break, but opted to relax and read my book) perhaps in the future.)


Happy Friday to you. Love Kristina

My silence is long overdue. I will try not to bore you with too many details but a lot happened in the last week after landing back in the States. While sitting at the airport in Houston during my layover, I sat next to an older gentlemen who told me that he was a lawyer from New Orleans. He asked me what I did. I explained that I was just arriving back in the States after teaching in Central America for the past year. He being incredibly complimentary and kind, offered to buy me a drink as a way of saying thank you, for the time I spent the last year with my kids. As grateful as I was for the gesture, I told him that my last year, filled with adventure is just a small story compared to millions of people who daily invest in the lives of others just where they are……… I was just grateful that I got the opportunity.

Saturday morning I drove into the mountains with my college friend Rachel to restart my car in Winter Park (it was in storage…. by the way it started on first try). Driving into the mountains was one of the best feelings. You forget how beautiful they are…. Home sweet Colorado.

Saturday afternoon I  went to the airport to pick up my mom. (Yes you read this correctly) She flew in to help me get moved in and spend sometime together. We spent the afternoon at IKEA looking for a bed frame and ate dinner for the first of three times during the week, at Hacienda Colorado (best margaritas and Colorado Mexican food).

Sunday morning we started bright and early with a moving truck, three of my dear friends and my storage unit. I threw away bags of clothes, lamps and picture frames….. Another one of my 20 Things I can check off. It felt so nice to get rid of things and throw things out.

The rest of my week was spent between doctors appointments and a few trips to Target.

In addition to just soaking up, down time while not working, I have managed to eat at many of my favorite spots,  go on walks at Washington Park (not nearly enough times). Take my bike on a handful of rides and begin shopping around for Yoga Studios. It feels so nice to be back in an actual yoga studio with new teachers and new challenges. As well I joined a Cross fit gym. A former coworker of mine, after some encouraging told me it is something I would enjoy and that I should try it out. Well….. I did and now I am hooked. It should be interesting trying train for the half marathon in between trying to recover from crossfit. (if you are unsure of what cross fit is….. it is intense weight training/interval/pyscho workouts :))

I am back into my old college house (different room, same house). Back in the neighborhood near the Park, near some of my favorite restaurants and bike ride able to the farmers market.

While drinking coffee on the front porch Thursday morning a little girl came by selling wands. Magical wands she proceeded to tell me. For just one dollar, I can now turn anything into rainbows…. (awesome).

Life back in the States is bittersweet. Only small things have changed……there are new restaurants open, the highway is now eight lanes wide, more people are married, and others are now expecting their first babies. But for the most part it is just as I left it…….Life here is busy. Everyone seems to be in a hurry.

Sitting in church this morning I felt my heart begin to pull. It feels so strange. So stuffy. Commercialized. I was overwhelmed by the fancy coffee I was greeted with and healthy young people filling the pews. I overheard one couple sharing about last night at the Rockies game in their victory over the Cubs, and a little boy with crocs on and a Patagonia shirt climbing on his mom’s lap. I found myself asking  myself….. what it meant to believe in the God of the whole world. I realized this morning of how quickly we place God in the West. In America. We put him in our music, our songs, around our necks, thank him for our new car, new house and our things……. but I couldn’t stop asking myself, but what does it look like to believe in a God that reveals himself not in stuff or in America, but a God that loves the whole world. (I have no idea)

In all honesty I am feeling a bit like I do not belong. Like I have seen things and experienced things that just cannot be explained. I cannot articulate it, otherwise I would. All I can say is that my heart is a bit torn. Spread a bit further…… when looking in the eyes of a small boy I swelled up with tears. In his eyes I saw my entire class of twenty two and missed them dearly…..

So while I have enjoyed drinking Bloody Marys at the Cherry Cricket (one of my very favorite spots), working on my sun burnt Colorado shoulders, wearing heals again (I did not fall), getting lost in the liquor store overwhelmed by the microbrew options, laughing with my old roommate as we made laps around the farmers market sampling everything local and organic, rubbing on my best friends belly as we try and get her baby girl to kick my hand or curling up in my big comfy bed in my old house ……….

I still miss it. Honduras. Central America.

But, I think I better get used to missing it…… because for now I am home. Back home in Colorado.

Below are some pictures that I have taken this week. Hope all is well wherever you are.

A blank blog post would be the most appropriate way to describe how I am feeling. Speechless. Speechless knowing that tomorrow I board a plane to head home to Denver…. without a return flight booked.

My emotions are at an all time high….. waves of joy, followed by thankfulness, tears of loss, bouts of laughter…… all pass as I begin to process what the past eleven months have been. I am so humbled………

I have made a vow to myself that although this is coming to an end, this is a chapter that I can refer back too as often as I wish……

I catch myself trying to share stories about my kids and my travels. As though sharing them allows me to experience them again…..

Teaching my kids, singing songs standing on our chairs….. laughing just one more time at something they said. Or perhaps I am sharing about one of our family dinners, playing charades amongst bugs, mice and drinking wine out of plastic cups. I take myself to the ocean, floating on inner tubes during Semana Santa, next to Faye, Matt, Kylie and Shep drinking cold beer as the sun burned our shoulders…… or I take myself to the Orphanage where Arturo is running around like a little monkey. I laugh thinking about the power outages that led to long conversations and romantic song jukebox playing. I laugh about the many times our house flooded because of our washing machine. The sound of the barking dogs, the rain on the tin roof of our house, late night singing in our bedroom, surfing in Nicaragua, zip lining in Costa Rica, doing two hour ashtanga yoga practice every morning for the last month and the many places I have seen and the incredible transformation that has taken place in my heart…..

I am eternally grateful. Humbled and so thankful for the countless people that I met along this journey. My dear roommates Faye, Molly, Alison, Kate, Kylie and Rose. The greatest three boys who became like brothers Matt, Philip and Thomas. To the D and D Brewery family Lotte, Ramon, Jason and Bobby. My yoga family Amy, Burgundy, Mary, Lisa, Carolina, and countless others….

And to all of you……For reading. For writing. For your prayers. For celebrating with me. For laughing with me and For allowing me to share…….. Thank You

I graduated this morning. I completed my 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training (Emphasis in Ashtanga/Hatha/Hot yoga). If at Christmas you would  have told me I would have done this I would not have believed you.…. such wonderful surprises life brings us. 

For whatever the future holds it has so much to live up too….. but I am certain it will be good.

So here’s to it Central America, Salud and Adios.

For giving me more than I ever gave you. For captivating my heart and making more into the person I want to be……..

And to you Colorado…. I will see you tomorrow. Me and the Rockies have a very long overdue date.

 

As well Gloria (my mom) is coming to Colorado Saturday. Cannot wait to see her.

 

Things are a bit nutty around here. Tomorrow I teach my yoga practicum, 25 minute class for the first time and Wednesday we sit for our final exam (three hour exam). Thursday we have graduation (assuming I pass) and Friday morning I fly to Colorado. (Excited). Saturday I  am going to pick up my car from Winter Park and Sunday I move into my old/ new house. So ……… I may be a bit quiet on here……

For now I am soaking up my last few days in Costa Rica and Central America while trying to digest the last eleven months….. But for now here are some letters to some special things… as I get ready to go home.

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To Zip Lining,

I knew climbing in the trees, zipping over huge waterfalls and giant cliffs would be exhilarating but you were more than that. You were awesome. I have not in a long time felt so limitless. It was beautiful, breathtaking, stunning and just a lot of fun. Proof is in the photos… (Ps all nine of us girls did it together, it was a blast, even when it started raining).

Best view of the line below over the waterfall…..

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Dear July 4th Holiday,

Yes I know, last year Munich now this year Costa Rica…..I promise that although I have not celebrated you in the States for now two years in a row…..You have not been forgotten. This fourth I had the joy of driving across Costa Rica towards the Volcano Arenal with nine of my fellow yogis. We laughed, danced, ate junk food, dodged pot holes, climbed hills and drove in the dark and toasted to your honor when we arrived at our hostel that night.

Thanks for reminding me of where I am from and being a wonderful place to return home too
Cheers from this Traveling American
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Dear Yoga Teacher Training,

You are Emotionally, mentally and physically exhausting…. but so good… I know that the end is near, but the exam and practicum that I still must do are the giant elephants in the room. I have to study ( a lot) before I can officially say I graduated and completed Teacher Training. I am looking forward to hopefully teaching in Colorado and getting deeper into my own practice. I can flip backwards now, go straight into headstand and am so close to forearm stand. More than anything though I have learned the value of taking time for yourself, taking deep breaths and living in the moment….. greatest lessons of all.

So glad I did this
From A New Yoga teacher

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Dear Passport,

I did not realize how valuable you were until you were gone. I am so glad that the hotel remembered that they took you from me. I thought I was loosing it. So if all goes as planned I will be reunited with you in two hours time. Remember that you are my only way to go home, so you are VERY IMPORTANT. Your copy I have, US government says is not good enough. 

So here’s to having you in my hands soon
Your owner Kristina
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Dear Last 11 months,

Deep Breaths. It is over on Friday and I am in awe. Awe of what I have learned, what I have seen, the stamps in my passports, the laughter, the friendships, my global family, the tears and the deep rooted life changes that have occurred. You have far surpassed my even wildest expectations…… gave me more, stretched me more and for that I am deeply deeply grateful. Thanks for not disappointing, for challenging me and for making me feel more alive than I ever have been before.

love me

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Dear Family,


Thanks for everything. For your words, for your unwavering love no matter what. I cannot wait to see you all soon.

Love Kristina

See previous Letter posts here: