Tuesday, January 20, 2009

witnessed history! Moved by the words of Obama's speech. Thank you, Mr. President!

Today, history was made. i woke up, checked my itouch for the inauguration schedule, got out of bed, turned on the TV just in time to witness our Vice President Joe Bidden be sworn into office. And then our 44th President of the United States, Barrack Hussein Obama, was sworn it (with a bit of a blooper thanks to the Chief of Justice). I feel fortunate to be alive and have witness this historic moment, even though i watched from home...it was history in the making.

President Obama delivered an impeccable inauguration speech, it was moving and inspiring they were words of a man who has strength and hope.
I am posting a text copy of his speech on my blog for keeps. (courtesy of msnbc.com)

Text of Obama's inaugural speech
Text of Obama's speech for his inauguration as 44th president
The Associated Press
updated 10:17 a.m. PT, Tues., Jan. 20, 2009

WASHINGTON - My fellow citizens,

I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.

So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age. Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered. Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics. Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America's decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real. They are serious and they are many. They will not be met easily or in a short span of time. But know this, America — they will be met.

On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given. It must be earned. Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less. It has not been the path for the faint-hearted — for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame. Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things — some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.

For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.

For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life. They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today. We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth. Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began. Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished. But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed. Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done. The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth. We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together. We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology's wonders to raise health care's quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions — who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans. Their memories are short. For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them— that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply. The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified. Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward. Where the answer is no, programs will end. And those of us who manage the public's dollars will be held to account — to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day — because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill. Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control — and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous. The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our Gross Domestic Product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on the ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals. Our Founding Fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations. Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expedience's sake. And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born: know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions. They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please. Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy. Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort — even greater cooperation and understanding between nations. We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan. With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet. We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers. We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect. To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society's ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy. To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds. And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the world's resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains. They have something to tell us, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages. We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves. And yet, at this moment — a moment that will define a generation — it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies. It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours. It is the firefighter's courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parent's willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends — honesty and hard work, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

This is the source of our confidence— the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed — why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"Let it be told to the future world...that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive ... that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]."

America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Thank you. God bless you. And God bless the United States of America.

URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/28751183/

© 2009 MSNBC.com

Sunday, January 18, 2009

MAC Hello Kitty Line

I am not hardcore fan of MAC, but i do admire some of their products (it's a girl thing i can't ignore). I do dream of owning several MAC brushes and a rainbow of eyeshadow, and pretty pretty pretty things, but i can't calculate on how to afford it all, i have to think of the priorities in my life. i do not have a single solitary MAC product in my makeup bag, however. I see that changing in the near future.
I came across the MAC Hello Kitty line and i have to tell you i am absolutely in love, it is practically calling out my name! My particular love for Hello Kitty began as a childhood obsession and it has finally found it's way into my adulthood. As much as my heart desires to own the entire shebang, i will probably purchase >5 things from this line. To be honest, nothing really appeals to me except, it's Hello Kitty! I should start a wish list. Seriously, how can i resist?! I don't see how anyone can. The release date is Feb. 10, 2009, the same day my boyfriend is flying out here to me. I am even more stoked!

(photos courtesy of temptalia.com)

I vow to no longer become a pack rat!

Funny things is, this weekend went through all the junk i accumulated during and post high school year and 80% of the stuff was Hello Kitty or Sanrio related. The stuff i got rid of consist mostly desk top stuff, trinkets, stationary, plastic figurines, stickers, etc.. Everything will be donated to a local non-profit charity.
I am the type of person who has a hard time of letting go of things and for some reason i felt good about letting go of the stuff i did. I was finally able to close a chapter in my life to begin a new one.
Getting rid of my crap is giving me a new mind set too. While i will always stay true to be a kid at heart (note: the reason why i want the hello kitty stuff), my mind is focused on myself that I am an adult now and I need to face and deal those real life responsibilities to get where i need to be. It's time to grow up.
The goal is to be with the one i love.

I am counting down the days!!!! 23 more days! My boyfriend is flying out here to visit. I miss him so much, it has been 6 months since we had last seen each other. It has been really hard not to be able to see one another for so long. We have been in a long distance relationship for 5 years now. He lives in VA and i live in CA. A lot of people will think and ask why? Why be in a long distance relationship, why go through it, it's hard, how do you do it, it will never work? Yes, it's hard and the reason is personal. How do we do it? It takes two to make one relationship work, and we communicate with one another. Long distance relationships are not for everyone, however. We are living proof long distance relationships can work, we're blessed to have each other in our lives.

SULLY is Amazingly Awesome!

Thursday (Jan. 15, 2009) afternoon my dad receives a call from a friend and next thing i know my sister grabs the remote and changes the channel. There we see in big bold letters on the TV BREAKING NEWS, but what drew our attention was the a plane floating on water with people standing on the wings. USAirways Airbus 320 was floating the icy water of the Hudson River in NY.
My heart still feels for the passengers and the extraordinary pilot who made one heck of a landing!

Chelsey B. "Sully" Sullenberger III, was the pilot and he is actually a good friend and mentor of my father's. They both worked closely together at PSA in San Jose. My father and Sully shared something in common, a love for planes and the art of flying. Sully spoke highly of flying with my father and he inspired my dad into continuing his dream of flying, enrolling into school and obtaining his pilot license. Just knowing this story touches my heart, knowing how someone like Sully so devoted and dedicated to a subject he truly loves saved so many lives and now an inspiration to many. A true HERO.
I remember meeting Sully and his family in Florida while on vacation, coincidentally they were staying in the same hotel as our family and visiting the same attractions. He's a real awesome guy, someone you wouldn't forget meeting.

My father was not able to finish his pilot license. 3 months or so before his completion, i was diagnosed with leukemia and he had to put flying to a screeching halt. He still loves airplanes and flying, he now works for USAirway in San Jose.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Clean up Makeup

Yesterday, my sister and I finally had the chance to hang out together after a long, long while. She has been working full time 4-5 days a week since the fall semester ended while my jobless butt stays put at home.

We were actually suppose to fly out to Arizona yesterday to surprise welcome home our "brother" Ron who came in this morning (2 a.m.) back from his duty in Iraq, we support our troops! My sister changed her mind about going and i just could not cough up the money (in a short notice) to fly out for the weekend. We miss Ron a lot out here and i am sure his family and friends out here do also. He is stationed out in Arizona and can't leave the base to visit the bay area, so my brother flew out there. He's pretty much family, my parents love Ron and think of him as his own son. There is so much love and admiration for Ron, coming from where he has been, doing what he has done, being independent-- i believe he has undergone a huge transformation that many people his age have not yet achieved, he's doing something real good with his life and we are all proud of him. I am grateful Ron is back home, safe, and in one piece. We hope to see him soon.

Back to the topic.
My sister is an
amateur when it comes to makeup and I am just an advance version of what she is, i am still learning bits and bits here and there and i pass my wisdom on to her until she gets the hang of it.
My old roommate, Kayla, was a makeup junkie and she loved to use me as her template and i always loved the outcome, it really takes talent (love and dedication) to put makeup on another person; kudos to all you makeup artists out there! Before i met Kayla
I've always admired makeup, but i just never knew how to put it on and whenever i applied makeup i would do so to the best of my ability and effort. I was also inspired by 2 of my beautiful and talented second cousins Jasmine and Kaycee who both love makeup, I will get their permission to post their names on my blog soon. Currently i am unemployed, I like to think of myself as a tight budget and bargain shopper, i tend to search the affordable makeup while making note of the quality of the makeup (after all it's usually about quality, not quantity). I also didn't have the right tools (i still don't) i was a finger applicator but now i have a few brushes and i try to work with what i have. I don't wear makeup on a daily basis, like all natural things in life i believe my skin has to breathe and i want to keep my natural beauty intact.

So, yesterday, my sister and i headed to Ulta to replace our old (some really old) makeup. We like watching TLC's "What not to Wear" and love seeing the makeup bit with Carmindy, we admire her simple approach to bringing out natural beauty. We found the Carmindy line (affiliated with Sally Hansen Beauty products) and purchased her foundation, loose powder, and primer. I also made a new lip gloss purchase at Ulta:
Rimmel London Kiss and Stay lip gloss in Hot (something), i ripped it open when i got into the car. The lip gloss is a 2-in-1 double ended packaging: one end is the lip gloss and the other end is the finishing touch gloss.
Here is a short review:
Price: Suggested price $7.99 + (store stocking and price varies)
Promises: 10 hours of glossy color with crystal shine effect.
Pros: An assortment of radiant colors to choose from. 2-in-1 convenient packaging, great for throw-in-the-purse and travel. A really nice fragrance in the lip color. Easy lip application, the color stays, and you get that crystal shine it promises (i love the shine!).
Cons: The gloss finish feels highly concentrated creating a sticky texture on the lips, it is quite obvious you have it on; it is not messy, rather sticky (think after eating something really sweet, gooey, caramely, and your lips stick together.) Does leave a mark and the sticky gloss prevents you from wanting to touch your lips.
Overall Outcome: This will be my only purchase and I will be using it from time to time.

My sister's old make up consist of pass downs from me to her and are a little over a year old. Her foundation was starting to develop a funky aroma and her mascara was just as clumpy and dry as her pressed foundation was. Everyone wants to have a fresh start for the new year and thought it would be a good idea to clean out my stash of makeup that i have accumulated over the year(s). I don't necessarily follow the rules and guidelines for when to discard makeup (i.e., mascara should be discarded after 6-8 months of opening, etc.) and i didn't even know makeup had an expiration date (well, i knew i just never acknowledged the fact.) Here is a website i found useful, it provides a list of makeup products to keep and which to toss: Clean up your Makeup Drawer
I am going to clean mine out. Good luck to you and happy cleaning!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Crummy Start

I have been trying to start my new years off with a good start, unfortunately, that it is not happening, at least not yet. I am still committed to follow through my resolutions, that is when I am good an ready...and i am ready.

I just got back from getting food from a local taqueria and they were absolutely rude! This is not the first time i had bought food from there, so i was really surprised and offended by their customer courtesy. I am hard-of-hearing (HOH) and i do not understand speech perfectly and it certainly doesn't make me any less of those who can hear well. The scenario was this: I order my food, paid for it. I absentmindedly forgot my change and headed for the condiments bar. I sensed that something was going on and i look behind and see the employees talking among themselves and laughing while glancing at me. I thought of it as weird at first but i ignored it, then a customer comes up to me with my change and i thank him for bring it to me. Then i see my order is ready and give the guy my receipt and ask him if this one was mine, he looked at it with humor and he said to me, "okay." i was like WTF? and looked at everyone coldly and everyone one starts talking and laughing amongst themselves even more. THAT just confirmed my suspicions that they were making fun of me. i have so much more on my plate right now. I am just going to leave it right here....