The RAD, BUDD, and all that Lingo

Yep, so here I am in Barrie typing away in the still dark night... actually, it's still party time down at the Crazy Horse Pub at Horseshoe Valley Resort, but I decided to call it a night after a full day of training, Tennis, hiking, afternoon tea, and a dinner w/ the managers and partners from work. Finally found time and connection to the internet!

So, as many have asked about my first two wks, all I can say it's been an emotional roller coaster. First week was simply brutal as it was training for the CKE (the Core Knowledge Exam for the Chartered Accountant designation examinations)... but this week has been a fun week of training w/o any studying in the way. I've met a ton of people who are in the same boat as I am, and met the people that I'll be working with. About 13 of us will be starting in the same industry of clients.

In midst of all this, I've been able to witness and experience God in different ways - through my fears, anxieties, joys, activities, and everything that has been happening. I met a fellow sister in Christ that is presently working in my industry (but in the tax practice; I'm in the audit practice), and was able to share w/ her on a personal level... and God has really blessed me by providing an awesome hotel roomie. She's quite different from me - adventurous, bold, etc. However, we are able to relate w/ each other in different capacities, and I'm really looking forward to getting to know her better in the years to come.

The view here at Horseshoe is AMAZING... too bad the leaves haven't changed colours yet. I've been able to drink my tea in quietness and solitude, while enjoying the great scenery. Thankfully, I've been able to have some of the quiet and personal time that I've been longing for since last week (I didn't really have a wkend since we came up to Barrie on Sunday afternoon). I'm glad I've been able to do my devos and simply be aware of Him in different ways.

I'll be heading home tomorrow... so my time here at Horseshoe will end soon. Being here for 5 days has been nice, but I do miss my family and bed. (Heck, I was gone for 5 weeks and I still missed my family like crazy...) Friday, we get to meander around the office and get used to things before being sent off on Monday to clients. Honestly, I'm filled with anticipation and uncertainty at the same time, but I know God will guide me through ultimately. More updates on my adventures at work to come! :)

PS - RAD and BUDD are acronyms, which are infamously known in my field of work, that we've learned during training. I'm sure you're not all that interested to know what it means, so we'll just leave it at that. :)


The Beginning of a Very Long (and Mundane) Chapter

Originally wanted to take a break tonite to blog about the past few days... unfortunately, guilt crept up so instead of spending some Holly-time, I ended up spending it w/ my new "friends". Will explain later... but in the meantime, I have to get ready for bed since bedtime is now enforced :(

A week ago, I thought waking up at 6:30 in the morning was insane... simply out of this world. However, in just a week's time, waking up at this time seems like a soon-to-be regular routine. How quickly time flies.

Ciao for now.


An End of a Chapter

I decided to insert an extra chapter in between the university and career chapters in the book of Holz's life: the four and a half months off chapter. Frankly, that is coming to an end... once the clock strikes 12 tonight, another chapter will begin. Here are some highlights to the week that entailed the end of this chapter:
  • Spending time with my grandparents - dim sum, taking a portrait together (at Loblaws for 6.63!), running errands across the city, grocery shopping, dining at home and out on own
  • Main Street w/ Ian... walking around the Toogood Pond (on Carlton St.) was like an adventure up north! It actually reminded me of the hike I took in Beaujolais, France
  • Quality cousin time; since my cousin returned home to Vancouver, we've been in contact daily. I think this month's phone bill isn't gonna be pretty.
  • Watching a beautiful sunset while driving to fellowship on Friday... even though there were cloudy remnants of Hurricane Ivan here in the city, the sunset complimented the clouds very well... with different shades of red, purple, and orange. So pretty. I was reminded of how awesome His creation is.
  • Adjusting into Emmanuel. Believe it or not, it's like a totally new environment for me. Growing up at NTCBC, it's very rare and strange to not be known... or to have someone say I don't know you at all! As Jess and Richard said in the past, it's as if you're going to another church all together!
  • Conversing w/ people that remind me of His sufficient grace and His plans through great and small things. While chatting w/ Myles on the phone, I was reminded of the little things God uses to touch lives, such as Vacation Bible Camp. Prior to starting VBC, I only thought of it as something insignificant that anyone could serve in. However it's not the size of the ministry/mission that matters, but rather the way He works. Also, while chatting w/ my cous, I was reminded that in all that we do, it's for His will and expectations, not ours or anyone else's. Kinda brought some light and enthusiasm into starting my new job next wk.
  • Helping out at Habitat for Humanity with KPMG. Although I did more harm than good (I broke a tool...), it was still a good learning experience. At least I learned how to use a tool properly! However, I feel rather... young.
  • Seeing Myles. Her tummy is SO big. :)
  • Being reminded of a theme that started of this year: Your Kingdom come, Your will be done. With this in mind, I am encouraged and confident to start my job.

So this is it. The end of a chapter filled with adventures overseas, memories with family and friends, plenty of tea and coffee, and fun. The only thing missing in this chapter? STRESS :) This has been my longest vacation ever... since I either worked or attended camp or school in the past. It's probably the only one of its kind in my lifetime... but we will see.

The End.


Winding Down

The summer is finally coming to an end. One of my anticipated events of my summer has come and gone, that being my cousin's visit to Toronto (I am missing her like crazy right now, although she is still somewhere in Ontario, leaving for Vancouver tomorrow). As I sit and ponder at what is to come in the next chapter of my life, I am filled with many emotions and feelings. Anticipation is certainly one of them, albeit it isn't a priority at this moment. I suppose I have enjoyed the lifestyle I've become so used to this past four months, to the extent that I actually like the way things are. Confusion is definitely one of them... in what area I'll leave that up to you to figure out. Joy and thankfulness is also among the list, as I know all things come from Him... and it's ultimately for the best, good or bad; this comforts me as I am about to leave my relatively stress-free life behind and head towards one filled with work and stress.

I suppose all the reminiscing and thinking I've been doing the past while has attributed to this state of me. I think of all the places I've visited this past summer - walking around the Steveston area in Vancouver, riding on the ferry in HK, walking in the residential streets of Tokyo, journal writing in the valleys of Beaujolais, mountain bike riding in Austria, walking on the streets of London, cafe-ing in the residential town of Germany, and pretending to be a student (minus the studying part!) at Cambridge. Mind you, this is only a small fraction of the memories running in my mind. I think of the friendships strengthened and established, and the relationships between my family and I bond even more; this leaves me to wonder when is the next time I get to bond with them, or simply see them. I think of the many things I've taken for granted in the past 4 years, such as spending time with my grandparents or just doing simple things like laundry and exercising, knowing well fully that once the 20th hits, I may not be able to do accomplish those tasks and things with ease... at least not as much as I once had.

I have four days of vacation left, with one given to my employer for a volunteering day at the Habitat for Humanity. With the remaining three days, I am deciding how to make the best out of it... mega family time! :) I suppose more quiet time will do the job too :).


Recap of the Past Few Months

While everyone is bracing for their first day of school, I am attemping to savour the last week and a half of my summer before work begins. Having been off for four months, I believe my summer deserves a recap... undoubtly, there's Asia and Europe, but there are many more :)
  • Vancouver, Hong Kong & Japan - My first time ever flying solo, and being away from home for such an extended period of time. Family was the key of this trip, so only did I really go sightseeing in Japan. In HK though, I managed to find my way to the HK History Museum, and get around w/o getting lost. :) Also, it was just super being able to roam the streets of HK w/ Vicky. I regret that I didn't see as much in HK as I would've liked to cos I was just plain lazy and afraid of the weather. Also, had I found my love for tea a few months earlier, I would've taken advantage of the Peninsula in HK but more importantly, the tea houses in Japan. Next time :)
  • Convocation - Graduating from UofT meant another chapter of my life came to an end, and another was about to start. Convocation made me realize that my time at UofT wasn't as horrible as I had imagined, and that I met a handful of people that I'm glad to call friends.
  • Josiah - Although my time in Toronto was short, I still remember the few fellowship nites that I went to, and the gatherings after fellowship: Smiley Cheeks, Ferg's, Congee Wong, BBQ at Umy's, Winn-in'... I enjoyed reacquainting with ppl, especially since they've been gone for the school year, and myself gone for part of the summer. Even though the puns and teasing were excessive (I don't like to drink!!!), they were rather memorable.
  • The sleepover that never happened - however, it was the topic of the summer, ever since the beginning of our trip until the very last week before she left for Western. Vicky, come over soon!
  • Europe 2004 - 11 countries in 30 some odd days was a bit too much on me... took a physical toll :) However, I don't regret much about this trip... learned a lot about the places we visited, the people we met, and simply general things about people in general. Learned to appreciate the diverse cultures that we were exposed to, and more importantly, treasure the things we often take for granted back home (such as water, vitamins, fruits, tissue paper, and soap) I wanna go back to London! I also met some really great people, esp. some in Cambridge... so it's been a great trip all in all.
  • VBS 2004 - I'm still a bit traumatized... but I am previleged to be able to witness how God works in the church, in the kids' lives, and in us. I'm glad to have met other brothers and sisters that I often see but rarely chat with; consequently, I've gotten to know some much better :). I also am learning how to appreciate those who serve at our church more and more and more.
  • Tea Frenzy - going crazy over tea was a highlight, as it made my mundane summer a bit more interesting when spending it in Toronto. Jess and I spent an afternoon at a tea seminar, Ian and I lounged at the Tea Emporium, grandparents and I spent some afternoons at an old English teashop, and I brewed my own tea at home, at Myles' and at VBS when I needed a stress reliever...
  • Monsoon and Terra - Fine dining experiences w/ Karen and Ian. Albeit my pocket has taken a big hit, but still those were nights to remember :)
  • Growing up - As I'm heading into a new chapter in my life, I realize other friends are too. As I mentioned in my previous post, you realize you're getting old when your friends move not cos their parents have to relocate or cos of school, but simply cos of their own careers.

Anyhoo, it's getting late... I'm sure I have left out many other fun and memorable moments here, especially the get togethers and reacquainting with old Thornlea people. We shall see what shall come in the next few wks, no? In the meantime, stay tuned for picture updates from my trip on imagestaion (yes, after a month, I decided to get at uploading my photos from Europe) and other blog entries. Ciao!


You know when you're getting old?

When your best friend moves away... not because of her studies or because her family has to relocate cos of a parent's job, but because SHE has to relocate for work purposes.

I suppose we're all starting a new chapter in our lives. Congrats Clary, and we'll make the most out of the remaining wk and a half before you're moving up north.... WAAAAAY north. (Haha, and some people thought I lived in the middle of nowhere.)


My First Set...

... my tea set! While taking grandma out yesterday to celebrate her birthday, we decided to stop at Market Village just to learn more about tea leaves (actually, the learning is really on my part since my grandma knows quite a bit about tea) and possibly buy some to savour at home. Not only did we come out w/ two types of Jasmine teas, but also with the tea set. I feel guilty, actually - it's my grandma's birthday, and she got me the set as if it was my birthday. Hopefully she liked the afternoon tea outing we had afterwards, where was was treated like a queen with scones and english evening tea :).

Didn't realize how much preparation is needed in order to use the pot - must boil it in water (in Chinese, "pow") for a considerable amount of time before it's allowed to be used. Will probably try using it today :)

It's Mine! A clay tea set with a tray that filters the leaves and water when tea is poured, three cups (for the famalia as my grandma insisted), and the pot! Has a bit of the modern and historical feel.