Arizona and Utah Roadtrip

Family picture in Monument Valley

This trip is about exploring the Colorado Plateau and its many manifestations through Arizona and Utah. Mainly, we’ve planned this trip to marvel at the sandstone formations, layers balanced one on another, shaped by the forces of deposition and erosion. We also find ways to balance time—between baby, play, and …

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Dogwood Camp

At Keller Peak

Close to Lake Arrowhead, Dogwood Campground is a convenient getaway. We arrive just in time to set up before dark. After dinner, it gets a little cold. As we prepare to go for a walk along the lake shore, Yan pulls out the little monkey fleece overalls. Daphney looks so …

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Daphney’s First Backpacking Trip

By Steelhead Lake

Having successfully camped for two nights and hiked at high altitude, we figured it was safe to go backpacking. This will be Daphney’s first trip into the backcountry wilderness. We spend the first night at Gray’s Meadow to acclimatize. Situated just below Kearsarge Pass, the campground gives us perfect night …

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One Hundred Days

One hundred days

This day marks an important milestone. One hundred days represents one hundred years, and the baby at one hundred days is blessed with a long life of a hundred years. Here, Daphney is in the walnut maple cradle that was recently completed. Daphney: may your days be filled with blessings …

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Walnut and Maple Cradle

Good morning, Daphney!

This project took a lot of planning. It all started out when Yan suggested that I make a cradle for the baby—a bassinet that can be handed off to the next generation as an heirloom. After giving some pushback, I finally accepted the project. Planning I scoured the internet for …

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Daphney’s First Camping Trip


It’s going to be Daphney’s first camping trip. I’m a little nervous about the altitude. Days before, I had been researching high altitude problems in babies. I had read that staying below 2500 m (8200 ft) is safe, but approach 3000 m (9840 ft) carefully. Since we’re staying at Big …

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Washington Trip

Crossing to Bainbridge Island

We’re heading to Seattle for me meeting at the American Orthopaedic Association. This first flight for Daphney goes well, and she isn’t the least bit bothered by the cabin pressure changes. Aside from the meetings, Seattle brings us great opportunities for sightseeing. Daphney gets her first rental car ride. She …

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First Fathers’ Day

My heart belongs to Daddy

This is the most special Fathers’ Day, since it’s my first. Yan whips up this fantastic meal to celebrate the event. There is acorn squash soup, summer rolls, and clay pot rice with savory toppings. To finish this off, Yan presents mung bean shaved ice topped with a cherry. I …

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Orthopaedics Party for Daphney


Yan and I give a big thank you to the orthopaedic department for organizing this beautiful baby shower for Daphney. The feast was nothing short of spectacular, as was the décor. We feel so blessed to be surrounded by friends.

Yan’s Graduation

In the garden

After years of work toward her doctorate, Yan’s graduation is here. Just months before, while we were on vacation in Sedona, Yan was fretting over completing her graduation requirements. The program mandates a certain number of publications, and Yan and I worked on a resubmission of her manuscript. It got …

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Baby in Black and White


Some of these first month shots are better presented in black and white, where the shapes and contrasts speak for themselves. This album represents some of those photographs, where simplicity better portrays the bond between parent and child.

Daphney’s First Month


This first month is about eating, feeding, and sleeping. In between those crucial activities, we had to squeeze in photo shoots. The curly baby poses are hard to get, and it was tricky to time this just right—right after feedings so that she’s sleepy enough. Then, there were times we …

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First Anniversary

Our first anniversary

It’s been one year! We are so excited to be celebrating this first anniversary. We feel very blessed—to have each other and our newborn Daphney. According to what they told us, we saved the top of our wedding cake from the reception. Unsealing it brings back memories. It tastes familiar, …

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Pregnancy Sequence

Delivery 40 weeks

Starting at the eighth-week mark, we began to take pictures at regular intervals. We decided to do this every four weeks, and as it turned out, the timing was perfect—monthly at about the same time after church. Each month, I would add to the sequence. Daphney was born right at …

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Baby Daphney Arrives

Daphney posing

It’s nearly 6:00 am Saturday morning. I am groggy, but I remember Yan getting up a few times during the night. “You’re in the bathroom again?” I ask. “I’m not sure, but there’s some water here.” I jump out of bed, and after one glance, I grab our packed bags. …

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Tests and Ultrasounds

Positive pregnancy test

Yan and I had discussed about starting a family, and after the last time with the negative test, we were ecstatic that one morning when we saw the + on the test stick. But it was the first ultrasound with the baby’s heartbeat that brought the most excitement. It became …

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San Jacinto


Yan and I have been enjoying taking pregnancy pictures, and with our love for the outdoors, San Jacinto seemed fitting. We drive out to Palm Springs, get tramway tickets, and have lunch there while waiting for our turn. This time, it’s homemade flatbread with vegetables. Once at the top, we …

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Baby Shower for Daphney

Baby announcement

Alice and friends put together this most lovely baby shower, complete with monkeys to complete this year’s theme for the Year of the Monkey. Merle spearheaded the food preparation. And we are very grateful to the Rigsby for opening their home for this special event. I was kicked out of …

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Etiwanda Falls Hike

New Year's Day hike

It’s New Year’s Day, and we want to start off the year by being active. We decide to do this popular hike to Etiwanda Falls. From the reviews, this trail has great ratings. We arrive at the trailhead parking early, and parking lot nearly full. We park, pack up, and …

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Spicy Miso Ramen

Spicy miso ramen

When you can have handmade ramen noodles, you can forget about the instant stuff that is like wilted cardboard in styrofoam cups. Why make your own when you can get instant noodles in a cup for less than a dollar? That’s because traditional handmade noodles have a beautiful texture that …

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Black Canyon Paddle

Goldstrike Canyon hot waterfall

I’ve lost count how many times I’ve been down the Colorado River below Hoover Dam, but the trip is always a highlight and it never gets old. As in most of the downriver trips I’ve down, we launch from just below the dam and explore the sauna cave and surrounding …

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Six Months

Apple cider

We held our half-year celebration at Rok n Fondue, enjoying a cheese fondue appetizer, vegetables in broth and filet mignon on the rok, then finishing off with sparkling cider and chocolate fondue.

San Diego Trip


Going to San Diego for Bill and Kathleen’s wedding gave us a chance to do some side excursions. I introduced Yan to the bamboo collection at Quail Botanical Gardens, now known as the San Diego Botanic Garden. The visit also took us to San Diego Zoo Safari Park. One of …

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