Thursday, December 31, 2009

Goodbye 2009!

It's become a habit of mine to write down the best things that happened to me during the year. It's so easy to forget what we've accomplished or suffered through in a given year, but I like writing it down, for the sake of memory.

I can't believe I've been blogging since 2006. In retrospect, that's not very long. But I really didn't expect it to last more than a few months. I get bored easily... at the same time, I get busy and drop things (like crocheting, sewing, crafting, etc.) I've tried to keep a real journal, and I just don't fill it up. Or I get mad and spit venom in it, and then feel ashamed and rip out the pages... so, this online thang is working out so far. Plus, I don't have to tell the same stories over and over to my family because they can read my blog! Ha! Love you guys!

Anyway, I usually write down the best 10 things... I think this year, I'm going to write the top 10 significant things...

#10 Buying a scooter. This is not me and my scooter... but Thuy Dam (former owner of So You Boutique.) She sold her scooter to me, and it changed my life! I love scooting around town, wearing the scandalous helmet she gave me, and using so little gas! It's a gas riding it... though there were two things that went bad. 1) I hit and killed a bunny on it. 2) It was stolen out of my front yard... but it is getting fixed and should be better than new come spring!

#9 My friend Tracy got married, and I overcame a huge fear of mine-- public singing. Now, crazy karaoke singing does not count... which unfortunately, many people have witnessed from me (yes, Eternal Flame is really my song.) Anyway, Tracy asked me to sing Ave Maria. I was honored. Then I started getting freaked out. My friend Amanda has a fear of public speaking--in college, it was the point of crying-- so we were both SCREWED. Sadly, I asked Amanda's boyfriend to sneak us in those little whiskey bottles that cost you an arm-and-a-leg in the hotel room. I downed them right before I sang to get rid of the nerves. Didn't mean to be disrespectful, but I get weird lip quivers if I'm nervous and that throws me off pitch. I was really happy with my "performance", and I didn't ruin my dear friend's wedding, so I think it was the right (though slightly immoral?) decision in the end...

#8 New set at KSPR: What can I say... our news set went from embarrassing to awesome. To the eye of the viewer, it seemed like it was overnight. For us, it was two to three exhausting years. The old building had its perks-- we were autonomous and could do whatever we wanted. We were like on this little island, far away from our management company... I was certain we were a fire code nightmare (joke.) Now, we can only have two mini-fridges in our new newsroom, and we have to walk 5 minutes to get to the nearest microwave. Still, it's definitely worth it. I honestly like our set the best. We still have some kinks to work out, but I think it looks very professional and it certainly boosted morale.

#7 Professional recognition: Since we're talking about my workplace... I want to talk about my work. I was nominated for a regional Emmy for a story I wrote and edited about an online company accused of being a scam. The story received recognition from the Missouri Broadcasters Association, and it also won the Gold Award from the Kansas City Press Club. I had the wonderful opportunity to be a presenter at the Emmys this year because of my nomination, and it was a nice way to be recognized and get my favorite call letters (K-S-P-R) out there again...

#6 Job promotion, life changes: I actually almost forgot to mention this one... I began co-anchoring KSPR News at 10. In November, I also added KSPR News at 4 to my duties. I'm not trying to talk about my job that much... BUT HERE'S WHY I AM: My weekends are now free!!!! FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 8 YEARS!! More if you count my college days (because I was always interning on the weekends!) My hubby and I can actually hang out on the weekends!! O.M.G! (*except, I work Sun-Thurs... so technically, we can hang out Friday and Saturday nights... but not Sunday nights...)

#5 I added another sister to the mix: If you're counting now, I have no legal siblings, but I have 3 biological sisters and two sister-in-laws... LOVE IT! Jim's brother Ryan asked his girlfriend Tiffany to marry him (she's on the right. Jim's sister Erika is on the left!) Technically, they got engaged on Christmas Eve 2008... but I feel like we should count that in 2009 since we've spent this year focusing on the wedding. And yes, I'm a bridesmaid. And yes, I have to lose weight. And yes, I will tan for it.
#4: Meeting my biological aunt (IMO!) and my Uncle Stacy! We had a lot of great adventures in San Francisco, including riding bikes from Haight Ashbury to the ocean, but the highlight of our trip was meeting more birth family. I had known about my imo for several years, but for some reason, I had never visited her. Shame on me. But I won't let that happen again! In fact, I'm going to SF in a few months to see her again. She and Stacy are really great people, and I hope I can get them to SGF sometime!

#3: Saying Goodbye to my Grandpa, Norman. We called him Normie when we were being silly. He was spitfire and a little hard to handle at times, but he was a huge influence in my life. He died the week of Thanksgiving, and it was hard to see him go. But, I did get to spend some time with him at the hospital, and he did recognize me. He said he was proud of me, and it made me cry. I didn't let anyone see me cry at the hospital--which is an odd thing for me to do. I rarely hide my emotions... but I just didn't want to cry in front of him or my grandma. I wanted to be strong for him. It's so weird how your best memories with your grandparents are usually from your childhood. I'm going to work on that with my grandmothers...

#2: We brought home Minnie Margaret. Yes, she is a rottweiler. No, she's not dangerous. Rottweilers are one of the smartest breeds in the world. NO JOKE! Originally bred for herding cattle, they are a great working dog. My neighbors were scared of her when we brought her home (look at that face!), but now they LOVE her. She greets them every time they're outside, and Minnie REALLY loves the little girls who live next door. We think it's sweet. That being said... please train your dog, big or small... unruly rottweilers give the rest of us bad names. By the way, Minnie has eaten more pairs of shoes than thought possible. She also ate my digital camera... she sleeps on her back and likes her belly rubbed. She also has been babied so much that she doesn't now how to jump. We say, "UP" and she'll put her two front paws in the car, but won't jump in... she also won't jump out. OH, I love her so much. It's sick. Check out her YouTube channel...

#1: We went to Korea!!! We went to Korea to support my 2nd oldest sister, Hyun Jeong, during her wedding to Glenn! Turns out, our Korean family wanted us to have a Korean wedding, too. It was beautiful... it was too much... I also got to meet Won Hoo, my youngest sister's baby. He was a freaking trip! I met my oldest sister's husband, Eun-Eop. We traveled the country, we even touched ground in North Korea, we learned more about my adoption, we learned about the beautiful culture in Korea, and we spent time with my Korean family. I love them so much, and I feel so blessed that I've had the chance to get to know them in my lifetime. The mystery has been unveiled... and we are the Park Family! But I'm also the Sherwood Family and the Van Dillen Family... just so we're good. It's amazing to have a good family, but words can't describe what it's like to pick up family along the way... or reunite with them... or whatever you want to call it. Hyun Jeong and Glenn's marriage truly changes my future with my birth family. They are such special people, and I can't wait for them to come to the United States! Oh, verklempt.

My parents, Charles and Sharon are healthy and happy. They are my favorite. I love them so much, and I want to make an effort to see them more in 2010! My sister, Yeon Jeong, just had another baby--this time a girl! Tae Hoo! I can't wait to see her. Jim started taking mixed martial arts- type classes... I re-learned then forgot how to sew... and crochet... um, my brain stopped working.

Monday, December 21, 2009

I'm an aunt- two times over!

My sister, Yeon Jeong, had a baby girl!

I am still waiting to hear the baby's name. She has a full head of hair... and her big brother, Won Hoo, seems very curious!

If you ever catch up with me on Facebook, you may have seen some video of our Korean family... They ask Won Hoo, "Imo-bu bo bo?"(Can you give your uncle a kiss?) AND "Imo, bo bo?" (Can you give your aunt a kiss?) He's so cute! I miss him so much that my heart hurts!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

O Christmas Tree (and Bah-Hum-Bug!)

I didn't have my camera with me, so I took this with my phone. I set up this sad, pathetic little tree last night because my parents visited us today.

I think this year I'm going to buy a new Christmas tree (on sale, after Christmas). In 2010, I think I might try to decorate the house like an adult... instead of like a college kid with a snoopy tree.

Also, I just wrapped all of those presents last night... and went shopping for the first time yesterday. The spirit of gift giving has left me. It's such a hassle... come on, we're all adults, and times are tough. What's the point of fighting the crowds to buy a $50 gift card to Bass Pro when you know you're just going to get a $50 gift certificate from Walmart in return? No one wants presents these days, but it's rude to give cash... so we get each other gift certificates. Wh-wh-why? And, if you do buy gifts, you struggle to find something that someone will like, so you get them something like bath salts, candles, or hand lotion... who really needs more hand lotion???

If you ask me, we should save Christmas gift-giving for children because holidays should be magical for them. For thirty-somethings and older, it's kind of an annoyance. Does this make me a Grinch? (I know the reason for the season, so let's not go there. I'm simply talking about the unneeded, unwanted stresses of gift-giving, people...)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Our friend Dave, the politico

David Catanese is leaving Ky3.

I just spent the last few minutes trying to write that sentence cleverly, but then I realized I was only burying the lead.

David Catanese is leaving Ky3. He's headed to Washington, D.C., to become the latest reporter at Politico. His last day on the air will be December 29th.

During his five year stint in the Ozarks, Dave accomplished something no other KY3 reporter had ever done. He elevated the station and filled a niche.

Many people will miss him for his witty writing, exclusive stories, and his political perspectives. Heck, a lot of folks will even miss that subtle smirk he gave at the end of an occasional live shot.

I will miss him for much more. We were pod mates at KY3 and later became good friends. Eventually, my husband would become even better friends with him. I have so many great memories with Dave from work, but the best flashbacks are from what happened off the clock. Dave and I had one epic New Year's Eve together (we just talked about this at dinner tonight!) And, he was one of the few close friends who joined us for our wedding in Honolulu, which he blogged about from the beach.

He's been in our Springfield family for the last few years, and one day we will look back and realize how lucky we were to have had this time together. (Mostly Jim, Dave and Taka, a.k.a, the Motley Crew.)

Though the news hasn't really sunk in, we are so excited for Dave! He has so much of the "it" factor... not as a political reporter but simply as a damn good person.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Free Silver Dollar City Tix, Dinner, and Overnight Stay at Lake Condo!

So excited to put this little prize package together... Joe Daues got the ball rolling with Lisa Rau, of Silver Dollar City... and we all finalized the details this morning.

On KSPR News at 4, we're going to give away four Silver Dollar City tickets, dinner, and an overnight stay at The Village, a lakeside condominium. THAT'S AT LEAST A $400 VALUE! And what a great treat for the holidays. Have you ever been to SDC this time of year?

I think it would be a great treat for your family or a wonderful gift for the holidays! It's so easy to have a chance at winning...


To read more, click here.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Christmas Parade 2009: Fun and Dreary at the Same Time

We did not color coordinate, though it looks like it.
From left to right: Me, Emily Rittman, Joanna Small, Christine Daues, and baby Jude Daues
We had a lot of fun at today's Christmas parade, but seriously, the weather was terrible! Not only was it cold... it was rainy. Let's blame the weather folks.

Meteorologists Craig Carnesi and Kevin Lighty

And my dang KSPR umbrella broke before we even got started! (Insert joke here.)

What the ??

We all had a good time passing out candy, though we all came to the conclusion that next year, we need less Tootsie Rolls and more Hershey's Kisses. Hey, it's been a tough year, but you know it's bad when a kid says, "No thank you" to your Tootsie Roll!

Towards the end of the parade... I had forgotten to take pictures during the midst of throwing out candy!

After that, a good portion of the gang went to the mall to ring bells for the Salvation Army. I saw dollar bills go in the red kettle on my shift! Awesome!

It was cold, wet, and absolutely dreadful outside, but overall, a good day! It was nice to see so many people with their cute kids and puppies... aw, the holidays are here!

Update: Kevin Lighty made a short video of the parade-- other than my dorky, "HEEEEYY" in the beginning, and my annoying gum-chomping, it's kinda cute...

Long Live Ugly Sweater Parties

You know the holidays are here when you bust out the ole Christmas sweaters...

Who says ugly sweater parties aren't fabulous?

Tonight we went to Cliff and Katie's housewarming/ugly Christmas sweater party. Their house was awesome, the food was great, and the company was fantastic.

I think our sweaters were also top notch.

Thank goodness for Vintage Vice!
Owners Shawn and Juli picked out our outfits... far better than what I had selected... Unfortunately, you don't really get to see the full effect because I had sparkly hairpins holding back my bangs, and they didn't make it in the pic. Nonetheless, I'm glad we got one pic together from the night!

More on FACEBOOK...

Friday, December 11, 2009

A little happiness for your weekend

This song was popular while we were in Hawaii for our wedding, and it somehow became our theme song... I think I may like this version better.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Who's sending me magazines?

Does this happen to you?

Last year I started getting Glamour in the mail. I have no idea why. I thought it was a fluke when I got one... but then another came, and another, and another... you get the picture.

Then, just recently, I started getting SHAPE. Why? I just got a second magazine in the mail today.
Am I unknowingly signed up for something? Has this happened to anyone else? Am I on some weird list? I don't mind the free magazines, but I'm wondering where they're coming from. It's happened twice in a year!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Who's Sarah Palin?

Just for the record, I am not trying to upset anyone or be political... and this is my opinion, alone.

However, this is as close as we got to Sarah Palin today... her BUS. Across the street.

I suppose it's her right to have a private function and not allow the media in. BUT WHY???

I think it's too bad that more people couldn't have closeup access to her. As she takes this big tour across our nation, people want to see her. There are people all over the Ozarks who want to see her and can't because they don't have the means to get over to Borders or down to Hollister. That's where people like me come in... and the best I could give viewers was a side shot of her bus.

Here's my 4 p.m. liveshot.

I had the same concern when we tried to talk to Rudy Giuliani when he came to Springfield in 2007.

My argument has nothing to do about politics. It's about access. I even talked with some of the PR people at College of the Ozarks, and they were also disappointed that she wasn't more accessible. I really do believe that our viewers want to see Mrs. Palin, and they were let down.

Love her or hate her, people want to see her. We have to cover an event like this. We can't just ignore it, even when we have limited video. Why not have a good relationship with working media? When public figures make decisions to avoid the media, it really only lets down their supporters. In my opinion.

By the way, if you want to watch a wrap of the day's events, click here.