My three days in Tokyo took up a month’s worth of posts, but I’m finally done posting about that leg of the trip. The next five days were spent in Bangkok visiting my side of the family.

Thailand has come up in conversation a lot recently. My former manager just came back from a 3-week trip to Asia where he was able to visit his daughter who happens to be studying abroad in Bangkok for six months. It was great to hear his stories and how he loved the food and the people there.

It’s also come up because Khun Ya, my paternal grandmother, is very sick and is in the hospital. There’s not one specific reason why she’s there, but the collection of health issues she’s been struggling with over the last few years have all gotten worse at the same time. My parents are en route to Bangkok at this very moment to be with the family. While I’m sad I cannot go along with them, Tim reminds me that we were able to visit her when she was still well and even able to come out to a museum and dinner at a restaurant. Being 95, that is no small feat.

Khun Ya is also a fantastic cook and makes some of the spiciest and tastiest dishes I’ve ever had. Each time we visit, there is always a surplus of goods to eat, in true Urwongse fashion.

While I spend some time praying for God to work in great ways around Khun Ya and the family, I’ll share some pictures from our visit. And if you’re so inclined, I’d really appreciate your prayers for the Urwongse family as well.

Categories: Briefs

Asia Trip 2012


I’m back from my Asia trip (it’s actually been a few weeks already!), and I have so many fond memories from those 16 days abroad. I had such an amazing time exploring Tokyo, I seriously contemplated “missing” my connecting flight back to the States while at Narita… but reason won over, and I got on the plane and came back to New York.

I did promise to share my trip with y’all, but I’m having such a hard time sifting through my photos and choosing which ones to post about. I can’t look through them without getting lost in thoughts.. so while I sort through my experiences, here’s a taste of what to look forward to.

I know I had high expectations for my visit to Tokyo, but they were met, and then some. Three days in this city was such a tease, and I cannot wait to go back.

Our time in Bangkok was a chance for us to relax and hang out with family. The fruit and the malls in Bangkok.. the two best ways to beat the tropical heat.

Taiwan was a crazy whirlwind for us. We toured around the entire island in under a week! Our family lives all over the country, so this was our itinerary: we spent a day and a half Taipei (mostly in 101),

then we took a train to beautiful Hualien where we stayed two days,

then we drove seven hours all around the coasts to get to Tainan,

then we took another car to Kaohsiung and spent a day there,

and then took the high-speed rail to Taichung where we caught a cab to take us to Cholan.

Whew, that was tiring just typing. Like I said, there’s just so much for me to process! But I’m working on it, and soon enough, I’ll have tons of stories and pictures for y’all.

Have a great weekend, and hope you’re making the most of summertime!

Categories: Briefs



Dear Friends,

Long time no blog… again. In these past months, there were times when a lot was going on, and then there were moments when I had the time (but not the capacity) to publish my posts. If I still have any readers out there (maybe a few of you?), here’s what’s been going on.

Back in April, I was forced to take a break from everything due to a health issue – it wasn’t anything terribly awful, but it was serious enough to take me out for a month. Looking back, I can’t believe that was already three months ago, but thanks be to God, all is well with my health now, and it was a blessing to have found true rest that month. Around mid-April, I also started my container garden from seeds of radishes, Thai basil, purple basil, sweet basil, lavender, Thai chili peppers, and sunflowers.

In May, I took my new perspective on rest and did my best to incorporate it into my previously nonstop life. I was back at work, but I tried to spend most my time at home. I was back to cooking (but not baking), and after helping organize our church’s annual Memorial Day Picnic, my involvement with various events increased, and so did the pace of life.

Then with June came the rainy weather as well as a downpour of work busyness. My container garden grew and loved all the rain, but my work days also grew longer as I kept busy with different clients in NJ and CT. Luckily during long commutes, I got the chance to plan my upcoming Asia trip and began learning Katakana so I’ll have some hope in getting around Tokyo.

Which leads me to today. Today I’m packing my bags and getting ready for my 16-day trip to Tokyo, Thailand, and Taiwan. I’ve never been to Japan before, and in all the research I’ve done about Tokyo, to say I’m excited is an immense understatement. Three days in Tokyo is barely enough to get a taste of the city, but it’s all we could spare in our family-centric trip. We’ve got at least four upcoming family gatherings, set in Bangkok and all over Taiwan, and we’ll have seen over 60 relatives at the end of these two weeks.

I will be documenting this trip in detail, so I promise you’ll be seeing updates from me once I’m back from my trip. And then once I’m rested, I’ll try to get back to baking and blogging regularly shortly after that. But until then..

またね! สวัสดี ค่ะ! 再見!

With love,

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Categories: Briefs