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I had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend that started on Wednesday, and regrettably is ending today. I should have taken pictures of the wonderful Thanksgiving meal we had on Thursday. To my delight, my brother Jack enjoyed it and complimented us several times.

Hubby and I had decided to have ham instead of turkey this year, and that proved to be a good choice. We went to Costco the weekend before and got our ham, rolls, and pumpkin pie there. We got the rest at the grocery store later. This resulted in a relatively stress-free Thanksgiving day, because we had almost everything prepared beforehand. I did do a tiny bit of last-minute shopping Thanksgiving morning, but just to pick up chips and dip and a couple of movies. I figured comedy would be the way to go, so I rented Get Smart and Kung Fu Panda. Thank God for Movie Cube, lol. We had invited a neighbor to dinner, but he came by and told us that he would not be able to attend.

Our list of Thanksgiving dishes: Ham (already pre-sliced), mashed potatoes and gravy, yams (with marshmallow on top), cranberry sauce, green bean casserole, rolls and butter, pumpkin pie, vanilla ice cream, chips and dip, mint Hershey’s kisses, and sparkling apple juice. Yum! And the movies were a hit, too. Everyone laughed themselves silly. Afterwards, the guys played video games while I knitted.

The next day, we all went to visit the Huntington Library and their fabulous grounds. I took Jack to see the Chinese Gardens, and he was immediately critical of it. “The pagoda pillars should be red, because that’s the festive Chinese color,” he said. Nevertheless, he took tons of pictures, and so did we. Over tea, I brought up the subject with him about how Asians tend to be so critical of the things we produce, especially Asian-American television and cinema. He thought that a comedic Asian-American TV show probably wouldn’t work, that a drama would be more successful.

We also enjoyed the green house, which contained three sections. The first one contained a warm, moist, tropical climate with orchids that smelled great (but not as great as the ones in Taiwan, of course). The second one, which we all loved, contained the cool mountain tropical forest, so the air was moist but cool. The familiar smell of a fragrant white flower from Taiwan wafted through the foliage, but we couldn’t find the flower. I never did find out the source of the smell. We went to the third section of the green house, which had a dry, earthy smell. It was the swampy marshland smell. Inside were several carniverous plants. Hubby got a perfect shot down one of them that I will have to share. But the best part of the gardens for our son were the Children’s Garden, which contained several fountains, shrubbery that was shaped like animals, and fun places to play.

I told Jack that I could only imagine what the Huntington Library looked like at night, and that the estate would be perfect for lavish parties and wedding receptions. He agreed. I can’t quite describe the feeling that comes over me when I picture it in my mind. It’s like seeing a beautiful English estate in a movie.

Yesterday could only be summed up in one word—shopping. We went to IKEA, then to the mall. Both seemed to have smaller than usual crowds. One photography salesman was really pushy, which turned my hubby off. We did contribute to the Black Friday sales surge this weekend, ha.

Today we went to the coast, and noticed that it was chilly and cloudy (in contrast to where we came from, which was warm and sunny). The north side was still sunny at first, but the south side was cloudy. Soon the fog traveled north and engulfed the marina. I had never seen so many boats come in to dock all at once. But we had a nice time there, giving thanks to God for his creation, and playing. I felt gratitude, for my family, and all the wonderful fresh air that surrounded us, and for the cafe that was still open, and for my son’s squeals of happiness as he ran free around trees.

I don’t hate the idea of going back to work tomorrow; but I do wish I had more days like this to spend with my family, and I’m grateful for what I have.


I nearly forgot that I had another blog that I started last year at Livejournal, so I imported all the posts over here so I can have one combined blog instead of two. My entries at Livejournal were more personal and spiritual in nature, whereas the posts here seem to be more technical or news-oriented.

No matter, I will endeavour to try to write on a variety of subjects here, centered around my personal and spiritual life, and my views. I understand now what bloggers mean when they say that using their family’s real names makes it more personal. I had to go through my old entries and “scrub” them of any references to real names, place names, etc. It’s a shame but I feel that I must, due to the dangers I described in my previous post.

When I was a kid, my mother constantly reminded me not to tell other people what was going on with me or my family. I always thought that she was a bit paranoid, and I wondered why I couldn’t just be upfront and honest with people, and share what was on my mind. But now I understand a bit more what she was talking about. Anonymity is a form of protection. On the other hand, it can also shut people out. I will try to be as transparent as possible without revealing my identity. How’s that? If it is possible, I will do it.

The Internet is a wonderful place to share ideas and communicate with people around the world. But it has its dangers as well. As the mother of Megan Meier can attest, the price to pay can sometimes be one’s life.

After everything that happened to a friend of mine, combined with the election shenanigans that happened to Sarah Palin and Joe the Plumber, I figured it would be prudent for me to switch to using a nickname instead, in order to protect myself and my family. So I will be going by “iMom” from now on. My hubby will be the “iHubby,” and my son the “iSon,” etc.

I’m going to combine some of my blogs and bring my blog posts here. Frankly, I was starting to have too many different accounts and blogs and I was neglecting some of them, or I would run out of things to say and some would get neglected for awhile.

But back to the dangers of the Internet–as I wrote in my post, Internet Networking: A Blessing and a Curse, I had a friend who was cyberbullied online. These bullies made false reports to her place of employment, and indirectly caused her to lose her job. Things were quiet for awhile, but apparently the bullies never let up. Imagine her horror– and mine–when suddenly our private email correspondence was posted on one of the cyberbully’s blogs! Her other friends’ private messages and emails were also posted by the bullies. The poster claimed she was doing “investigative journalism.” Barring the possibility that myself or my friend leaked our correspondence to the bullies, obviously someone hacked into her email account and copied the emails. While I am not ashamed of what was leaked, it was obvious that the bullies posted what they considered to be the worst parts of the emails in order to discredit us.

Two weeks prior to this occuring, someone also hacked into my friend’s site and deleted 90% of her files. Thankfully, she was able to restore them. I had warned my friend months ago to change her password to a more secure one, but I doubt that she ever did it. Now she finally changed it, but it’s too late. After more than one person filed a complaint to the FBI about what the bullies did, they removed most of their posts with the private emails, but they are unrepentant. And who know how much information they obtained about my friend, and all of her friends?

It all makes me sick. Maybe I am overreacting, but after seeing what happened to my friend, I am not taking any chances. So I am also going to remove all links to my celebrity blog from here also. Why? Because when they hacked into my friend’s emails, they also discovered the link to my celeb blog that I had emailed her. And guess what they did next? They came and tried to harass me by leaving nasty comments on my celeb blog. They did this in response to a blog post I made on another blog of mine where I pointed out their dastardly deeds.

It may take away from some authenticity in my writing, I suppose, but I want to be free to express myself without fear of reprisals, so this is what I have decided to do. Maybe this dooms my blog from ever being popular, but so be it.

I’m back, and I’m making some more changes to this blog, including the names I use, blog names, etc. What did I do, you ask? Some exciting things, such as interviewing Hollywood producers for my celebrity blog. But I also had some family happenings that were not the happiest, which revealed my inner flaws and struggles. I’m not a perfect person, even though I sometimes wish I were. I have more than one blog to express my feelings, especially those of a more raw nature. But sometimes I think that it’s too much. I should say what I want to say in just one blog, because too many blogs is too many to keep track of.

Yes, I’m saying all this in conversational English, and not the most eloquent written English. But that’s all right. For so long I have felt the need to always put on my best self and never truly reveal how I feel to others. My husband was one of the few who was able to see through my facade and understand my inner turmoil. As a writer, sometimes I’m poetic. As a mom, I am concerned about certain issues moms relate to, such as education and family issues. As a daughter, I have had my share of struggles with my parents.

The question in my mind is whether or not to share these things with others? Why share them at all? Wouldn’t they be suited for a personal diary, kept under lock and key, instead of on the internet? People of diverse opinions express themselves on the internet, and that is great, but at the same time, people can be likewise extremely cruel on the internet. This is why I decided to stop using even my first name on this blog, a decision which I will explain in my next post.

I wish I could offer something of value in a blog to others. The problem is, I don’t consider myself enough of a techie, or a financial guru, or guru of anything to write on a specific topic of interest like that to others. I tend to be a generalist; interested and perhaps well-versed in a wide variety of topics but loathe to dive too deeply into most of them. So you’re stuck with just… me. I can only offer myself in this blog.

To be honest, I prefer writing for money. I wish WordPress would allow us to post ads on our blogs. But then again, some readers might be offended by commercialism in a personal blog. I understand that. The reason my blog is here on not self-hosted is because I already spent considerable time setting up a celebrity blog and another forum site on my own, and I don’t want to do it again for another blog. But maybe in the future I might consider moving this blog to its own domain, once I find a suitable name for it.

About the name—I’m still working on it. So I apologize if you find the titles changing frequently. I don’t think enough people read here to mind, though.

Also, my two most popular posts here were about celebrities. While I understand the fascination with celebs, and I will still write my opinion about them from time to time, I want this blog to be more focused on my views about myself and my life, therefore I have decided to keep one of my celebrity posts private.

If you read this post, I am most grateful, and thank you for your time.

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