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First work day of 2012

Today is my first day returning to work. Oh my gosh I was so jet lagged in the morning. The weather in Seattle today is just wet and nasty, but it is still great to be back in Seattle. So work is still work even in 2012, but I did catch up on my Auburn football tonight. Well, instead of watching the boring Orange bowl. I decided to watch the replay on ESPN3 of the Chick-fil-a bowl (Peach bowl). It was actually a pretty good game, especially in the beginning. I am very glad that Auburn won. What a great way to end 2011. So what’s next? the LSU / Alabama rematch. I can’t wait.

My New Office Location

So after 4 years, I finally moved to work in Seattle proper. Take a look at my little office view.

So yes, after 4 years of working, I finally got transferred to our downtown office It is a mixed feeling move. It sort of feel like moving to a new job. Few years back, it would not have any doubt of moving to the downtown office, but today, I’m married, priorities changed, moving downtown is a different feeling and environment. Do I miss Lynnwood yet? No not really yet, but I am sure I will after a few days.

So what’s changed?

1) I will start to commute via the bus to work starting today, gas savings are good. When the weather gets better I will also begin to bike to work again.
2) The downtown environment is more like my previous work environment back in Houston, or even Birmingham. Oh I love it and when you are downtown, dressing up for work feels pretty good, and yes I did wear something different today.
3) The bad thing about working in downtown is that doing errands are a little bit more difficult. Before on my way home from Lynnwood, I was able to stop at many places to get groceries for the house, it is a bit more difficult now.

All in all, I think it is a pretty good move, we will see how I feel again in few more days.

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. 2010 has been an interesting year. There are many things I am thankful. I am thankful for Vicky, I am thankful for my family, I am thankful for my friends, I am thankful for my work, I am thankful for the successful purchase of my house, I am thankful for the surgeons in Beijing, I am thankful for the skillful Delta pilots, and I am thankful for everything in this interesting year.

Once again, Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!

Yet another Bike to work day

So I biked to work again, it’s been a while since I last talked about biking to work. The 11.5 miles from my house to work isn’t as bad as it used to be when I first started. Of course the distance is close to 2 miles shorter but who’s counting right? Ever since my co-workers and friends moved downtown this year, I haven’t been riding as much. I do need to ride more. I need to lose some of this weight that I’ve gained. Anyways, 52 minute ride to work isn’t too bad.

Labor day weekend updates

This past weekend was fast and busy!!!

Friday:
– Took off early from work and took some engagement pictures with Vicky
– Since Mom and Dad is visiting this week, we went to see Avatar for the first time before picking up my parents.
Saturday:

Mom and Dad Visited this weekend. They arrived very very late Friday night. During the day, Vicky and Mom spent some time together and Dad and I went on to watch the first Auburn game of the season. Yes and we won!!! It looks like it will be an interesting season.

Sunday:
My family and I spend some time doing yard work and cleaning up the garage. The garage is one step closer to being clean and complete.
I also spent some time in the attic installing my ceiling fan.

After Mom and Dad left on Monday, we headed up to BC to visit our friend in Vancouver. It was a short trip, but a pretty fun trip.

Busy weekend huh?

Pictures from Gas Works Park

An afternoon after work, this is my first time to Gas works park. I wanted to share some of these pictures with everyone.



Weekend / Monthly Update with Min-Hsao Chen

So it has been a very long time since I wrote in my blog and since I am in the middle of my craziness at work on a Sunday, what better time to write a little bit about what have been going on so I won’t forget all the little things.

So Let’s start from now and go back to where we last left off…

Today.. I am working in the office today… overwhelmed with 2 major projects. Oh and I also receive my new glasses… which is incredibly fast.  I ordered them on line on 05/20/2010.  Which means I got them in 2 days!!!!! oh and it was only 15 dollars with lens and coatings and all!!! Coastalcontacts.com baby!!!

I may post a picture later if I have time.

Yesterday (05/22/2010), we spend an entire day looking for carpets and paint colors…. why? well… look below… :)

This past Friday (05/21/2010), I was suppose to be a home owner, however, the stupid lender decide not to fund in the last minute and then decided that they made a mistake and will be funding me.  So I will be closing on Monday!!! Oh … I guess I will be a home owner soon!!! yeah!!!

This past Friday was bike to work day, and I biked to work going my fastest getting to work for an 8AM meeting.  54minutes from my townhome to my office!!! just short of 14mile/hour average time.  I am getting stronger.  In the afternoon, I took on the challenge of 8th Ave NE going south bound.  Yes, it was a super step hill and on top of that it was pouring !!!!  I was soaked!!!

Wednesday, my folks arrived in Seattle.

Monday, I biked to work with my new bike seat… I felt the comfort and more power!!!

2 weeks ago… I was back in NYC for my second trip for my project.

about a month ago… oh I signed contract for a new house. :)

So did I miss anything?

Updating my blog and just chilling…

The last couple of days been pretty busy, with my family visiting… I moved from the master bed room to the guest bedroom, and from the guest bedroom to the office. But the exciting thing is my parents and my uncle from taiwan are all here in Seattle visiting me. It is good to be with family :)

So as for work… it has been pretty busy. Good news is that we got the NY project. Even after the lack of onsite interview… YEAH YEAH!!!! so NYC here I come.

More updates to come.

Remaining in Seattle after all …

{This is a backfill post}
What an interesting day today, I woke up early this morning, got ready and went to the airport. I parked my car in an off site parking lot, I got to the terminal, I went through the security line and I got to the gate. I was still early, so I went around and look for some food. I got an bottle of OJ and a musubi and went back to the gate. Shortly after, they started the boarding process. I checked in, walking half way through the jet way and then my boss came walking up from the airplane. He said. “well, I just talked to the pilot and they said they don’t understand why we’re still taking off”. The pilot also said that a lot of planes already got cancelled. So my boss ask us if we should go or not. Finally our boss decided to cancel our trip to New York and not risk the chance of getting stuck either in New York or worse get stuck halfway between here in New York because we’re unable to land in New York and miss our interview.

So after walking back out to the terminal, and pick my car back up … I was back to work in Seattle :)

Getting Ready for NYC!!!

I hardly can sleep last night. No no it is not because I did really well in the poker game last night but that was fun… thanks my friends for coming over. I am excited because I am going to NYC for the first time!!! No no I am not going there for fun, but for work and the bad news is that I will be returning tomorrow night. so more about NYC later today… have a wonderful Thursday everyone!!!

Interesting week so far..

So this week has been pretty interesting so far…

Work has been busy… I finally got a chance to place some tennis yesterday… went to the dentist today… my mouth is all numb now.  About 10 days ago, my  4 liter hot water maker broke, I took it apart found out that the thermal fuse burnt out, I ordered an exact thermal fuse from ebay, got it in few days.  However, I needed to find a crimping coupler to bind the fuse with the wired.  I can’t solider it, because it is a thermal fuse and the heat will probably break the fuse.  So after finally going to Radio Shack to get some parts, I put the hot water maker back together and yeah… it is making hot water again… just perfect too.. cause I need a nice cup of hot tea ;)

see the red light… it is boiling ;)

Traveling without a car today

I like public transportation. I like trains, ferries, and buses. I never really thought about why I like them, but I just like them. Today is a special day, I am going to Bremerton for work. My coworker will pick me up at the ferry terminal on the otherside. So, I am taking the public transportation the entire way.

Few things I notice, and maybe these are the reasons why I like public transportation.

1) The city looks so much different when you are on the bus.


2) When I am traveling without my car, I just feel so light and free. I mean I don’t have to worry about parking, break-in’s, and everything else associated with a car. Granted, I don’t get the excitement of driving, but it is good to change it up a bit.


3) no traffics to deal with. That is relaxing :)

Ideas for a book…

With my school done and just work left… during my travel I came up with two new ideas…

1) A book…. a travel guide for photographers, maybe for Paris or even just for Seattle.

2) an invention for making the bed.

hummm.. I wonder if I can accomplish part of this before 2011.

New week New hotel and Luggage!!! Finally

So today started off pretty late, I guess I am pretty tired from all the long nights from previous days, but it is the beginning of a new week and the beginning of my last week in France. Today started with my panic attempts to access the internet to finish my work timesheet. With all this traveling, I forgot that I still need to fill out a vacation time card for work. So, I ended up at the local McDonald trying to use their free internet to VPN back to our office to complete my time card. Yes for some reason our internet did not work in our hotel. :(

Amazingly, right after finishing my time card, we discovered that there is an Air France Office nearby. We’ve been here for a few days and there is an Air France office just right next to where we were staying, AMAZING!! Since we have not gotten our luggage yet, we decided to go and see if they can help us. After around 20 minutes of waiting and talking to the reps, we got our new hotel address updated in their system, and found out that they have found one of our luggage and maybe delivering it today. Woo hoo!! With that wonderful news, we help our friends drag their luggages across Paris to our new hotel.

Our new hotel is a bit nicer, it even have an RFID key for opening room doors. How cool huh? However, the location of the new hotel is a bit farther than the previous location, but it is still very close to the metro.

Once we all checked in, we decided to go for another city bicycle ride around Paris. Oh, I just love riding bikes around Paris!!! This time, we rode to the Picasa museum and the Victor Hugo’s House. Unfortunately the Picasa Museum is closed until 2012 and all other museums are closed for Monday!!!

We parked our bikes and stopped for lunch at the Cafe Hugo. Yumm Yumm… Beef and Carrots!!

Victor Hugo’s House.
After a short break we decide to get another bike and ride to Pompidou center. However, I ended up getting a bad bike and unable to return it properly so I was not able to check out another bike. My friends ended up pushing their bikes along the side walk all the way to the pumpadu center. :( sorry guys…

More stairs!!! This is one of my favorite stairs shots.

After a short visit around the Pompidou center, I got a new bike (paid another 3 euros) and rode to the islands to have some ice cream with my friends at the Berthillon ice cream shop. Yummy!!! They have, supposedly, the best ice cream in Paris. So on a cold winter day, we were having ice cream.

Xavier making Hot Chocolate!!

The shops on this street have some really interesting things.

A night view of Notre Dame de Paris, as we walked toward the near by Metro Station.

For dinner, we went to a small wine shop near Bercy. So, tonight I learned that you can not call red wines smooth, you have to describe the wine as fruity or not so fruity… so many things to learn about drinking wine.

Sausages and beans.

Duck breast salad.

After our wonderful dinner, Xavier took us to a night stroll near the France National Library.
and more “stairs” pictures ;)

After we finally returned to our new hotel, half of our luggage was waiting for us!!! YEAH!!!! However, the other 1/2, my half is still missing!!!… so far I have travelled in the same clothe for 7 days. Oh don’t worry, I do wash them nightly ;).
Tomorrow: Versailles

This is the week!!

So this is the beginning of the week of my big adventure. It is funny… I am very nervous lately about my trip. This is the first time that I am traveling some where, where the locals speaks a language that I do not speak. (well.. since 1985 when I moved to the US). I am very nervous about traveling around France with my really really poor French.

But I am sure, no matter what it will be a fun adventure.

So… few things I just realized….

1) It is super cold in Ames right now!!! and this weekend it will get colder!!! Why Ames? That is where I am going for my graduation.

2) WHAT!?!?!? No hood for Masters Students ??? huh? Well… I just got informed that only PhD students have hoods for ISU. Is that true??? that is so weird… I mean… every other school that I have seen have hoods for their Masters students… but not here? oh… this bites! … maybe I should go get a PhD just to get a Hood… nah… maybe not.

3) The weather in France seems to be ok right now .. and the 10 day forecast seems to be good… I hope it stays that way.

4) Trying to wrap up all my stuff for work…

5) oh… I really wonder how connected will I be when I am in France? in some ways I probably don’t want to be connected…

6) Still need to pack… and damn US airlines for charging extra for bags… what gives…

7) got to work out all the logistics for the Thursday morning airport craziness. (tripit.com sure do help alot)

8) Plenty more of things to do…

:D

12-02-2009

Today is my first day back to work after Thanksgiving. It was a busy day and I still have this nagging cold. This is very annoying.
But one good thing is that we manage to book the a hotel in Tours France for the first few nights. We are still looking for the hotels for the rest of the trip in Paris.

But this is where we are planning to stay for the first few nights.
http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g187130-d219884-Reviews-Hotel_du_Manoir-Tours_Loire_Valley_Centre.html


View Paris Trip 2009 in a larger map

More to come… I am feeling tired .. so I am going to bed now… I will try to set up a new site for this month’s activities… maybe tomorrow.

Beginning of December 2009

So, gone is another November and so begins December. This year i will do something different. I am planning to post every day in December and document my busy and exciting December. So I am currently on my connection flight back to Seattle. Work tomorrow… But… Graduation and France in few weeks!!! More to come … Time to shut down and get ready for take off.

Blogging from 36000 Feet off the ground!!!

So… it has been a while since my last blog entry… I haven’t been blogging doesn’t mean life hasn’t been moving. Actually, it is very much the opposite. So this past weekend was Labor day. as usually, I went back to Auburn for Labor day. It was also my Mother’s 60th birthday!!! The trip was good had plenty of good food and Auburn Won their first game of the season!!!..

oh don’t worry… more pictures to come when I get home. But as for now… let’s talk about on board Wi-Fi!!!

Woo hoo… so this flight from Atlanta to Seattle actually have on-board wifi…. actually .. I am writing on it right now!!!
So of course as a super geek… I took pictures.

and I ran speed tests.

All in all it’s pretty nice…

For on-board wifi it is pretty nice. 1.5mb/s down and 256k up. Not too bad..
.. I was not able to get voip to work… VPN works but very unusable. Youtube is watchable… but I wonder how many people can watch it at the same time.

The only problem I see is that my battery will only last 4 hours and the flight is 5 hours… yikes…

Well… I actually have to work now.. on the plan and send something out… ha ha … anyways… short week this week

Happy Friday!!!

Today is a wonderful day. I showed up at work, we had a pancake breakfast and I moved to a new cubical. It has been 2 years since I had an office with a window. It has been over 5 years since I had an office with a view. Ok even this this is a cubicle… this cube does have a view and a window. yeah!!!

Happy day … happy day…

The bad news is … I did not ride to work today:(… I guess I will need to play some ball tomorrow or this afternoon.

Last day of July 2009

July 2009 has been an interesting Month.

1) 10 bike rides to work this month, yes today is my 10th trip to work!!! only 87 more to go!!! So with the total work days of 22 work days this week I rode 10 trips.

10/22 = .454545 = 45% of my working days are riding to work.

2) Seattle hits the record heat temperature this week. 103F+ Super Hot!!!

3) I started to count calories in conjunction with my bike riding. Yes I am trying to get fitter and maybe get back to my goal of 175. I have a long way to go

4) I discovered the Seattle Public Library this month!!! Wonderful Place!!!

5) I wrote my first Iphone app this month.

6) Tried to do online ads this month and got shut down because of suspicious clicks. What gives google???

7) We won our first volleyball game this month. Hopefully next month we will win our first set!!!! Current record 3-37.

Overall, it has been a good month… there are few things that I do need to change and improve. School work needs to be completed!!!

But all in all I think I am making a little progress.