Tuesday, January 1, 2019

2018 Year in Reflection


Below are just "some" of the highlights that I can remember through pics I've taken and went through recently. I thank God for the many blessings for being able to do all this..

Went geocaching with my sister and her husband in Fergus Falls..

Minnesota Vikings "Parody (Twins) Theme Song

*a little fun parody I made after another video I made of the "Minneapolis Miracle"

I didn't have tickets to the Super Bowl, but I was able to checkout some of the activities :

Sal reporting from St. Paul's Winter Ice Palce (1.28.18) https://youtu.be/HKeoZAfB_Rs more... USA: Minnesota-Super Bowl 52 Experience Visit smiletravelingblog.wordpress.com


My younger brother visiting Morris..

As he drove through before going to Fargo for a work-related trip.

The Winter Olympics going on in South Korea inspired me to go ice skating at the local rink..

I was able to snowboard only once (February 24th) the entire season during a winter storm as I love fresh snow..


Parody-"Walk Like a Minnesotan" (originally "Walk Like An Egyptian" by Bangles) by Crazy lil' Sal https://youtu.be/qsoxwacSYtw

Some of the challenges of the year were my sewer back-up..

I tried to rent this machine at the local hardware store, but it broke. I ended up calling a local plumber and got it taken care of.

I visited family down in St. Paul for my birthday, which my dad treated all of us to Brasa Restaurant (found by googling)..

Before heading back to Morris, I watched my niece's volleyball game with family..


It was an "April Fools" Cold Day, which I was in St. Paul to celebrate my Mom's b-day ..

Went to play some piano after getting inspired by watching a "friend's" performance at the campus..

During the celebration of my sister and mom (again)'s birthday together, some of us played the "big version" of Jenga!

We would later go out to eat (same restaurant-Brasa, where we went earlier this monht) and then go for a walk along downtown St. Paul's riverfront...

I also worked on car maintenance projects-spraying rustoleum (black) underneath my car to maintain the exterior protection and color from the "winter" elements of Minnesota.


My sump pumped started acting up, so I ordered a replacement

My co-worker and I took some clients to this annual "Special Olympics Track Meet" in Moorhead, MN..

My friend Chris and I drove to Minneapolis for one night to check out "Pulse Twin Cities"..

It was our first time at US Bank Stadium too!

I worked on my summer project early as we had some nice "early" summer-like weather..

Helped record the local high musical called Legally Blonde.

"Fill me Up" (originally by Will Reagan) by Crazy lil' Sal


Hungout with some co-workers , friends, etc.. at Old #1 's cool patio view after watching Jurassic World..

It has been a rainy season and year overall after, so I left these tarps in the back and front part of my house to collect rainwater coming down my metal roof and sliding it a way as far from my house..

This prevents my sump pump working overload and keeps my basement "dryer"!

"Can You Feel the Love Tonight" ("Lion King" Disney Movie Soundtrack) by Crazy lil' Sal

https://youtu.be/ZBJmc-CKXyU July

I walked the entire lake of Nokomis (Minneapolis, MN) with an "old" friend that used to attend the University of Minnesota-Morris, which we were just "catching-up" on how we are both have been doing since (several years) we last "hung out" together..

I would later go check out Minnehaha Falls Regional Park, which I haven't visited for year and remember going to earlier as a kid too..

I then visited another friend that went to UMM, but we both went to school together. We also caught up on what we've been up to since we graduated (different years). We saw each other years ago when a "close friend" (faculty) passed away :( in Morris..

When I first bought my house, I would use a "manual" (non-gas powered) grass cutter. It would take a longer time, but less noise and more environmentally friendly, plus a great workout! Life got busier and I started using my "gas powered" lawnmower that the previous owner of the house left and gave me. That was back in 2006 and it finally died! :( I decided to invest on a long term (when I get older and don't have the "energy" to keep pulling that string/wire to start it up!) "battery powered" lawnmower..

So many benefits, which I highly recommend!

I love swimming, so I joined some friends (co-workers) one hot day to Glacial Lakes State Park, which I would show a picture hanging up of an "old school" pic of our local church "MCC Softball Team" parade float back in the days...

I also had a great workout kayaking (*see #saldapal8 , pic taken by Paul J...thanks!)

I continued my summer project of painting some "spots" underneath my metal roof ..

Also, did on-going car maintenance by re-doing my windshield repair..

"Wavin' Flag" (originally by K'naan) Dance w/ Crazy lil' Sal



We (family & I) celebrated Alysa's (my niece turned "teenager") birthday at Olive Garden

I took one of my ESL (English as a Second Language) students (from Brasil) to the Douglas Country Fair..

I took some time to volunteer for my workplace to "table" at the Stevens County Fair

As we were promoting our Open House fundraiser for our renovated building project.

I had my own personal house building renovation issue with my roof with this roof "sky window" leak..

I met some cool people while helping out with the annual Feed my Starving Children..


I started my own "moving" business-just for a weekend! :) I helped my sister and her husband move somewhat across the state by renting this U-Haul truck in Alexandria..

It was fun driving it, but the most difficult part was one area where I was trying to cross this double state highway. I was tempted to cross to the "medium", but there wasn't much space. Fortunately, I saw the news prior of a car accident that did the same thing and I learned from it. I decided to NOT take the chance and wait a little longer for a more "clear" traffic despite some "pressure" (car behind me). Let this be anyone's lesson!

Thanks to a couple of several friends that helped move (unload and load).! It was fun riding in the trunk from Pizza Ranch as we had a packed car of helpers.

I then went to the cities to drive one of my renters to the airport as he left for "home" :( We were able to hangout a little at the crowded Minnesota State Fair..

Minnesota: State Fair 2018-Scenes of Big Crowds (Sun. 9.2.18) https://youtu.be/MPlUZd2g6pY

I went to the cities again , but to celebrate my nephew's birthday. I gave this gift (children's Bible) to him...

We then went on a boat ride at Lake Elmo..

Thanks Chris and Paul for keeping me safe and helping with my needed to be done "sky window" caulking..

Metal Roof: Climbing for Maintenance Repairs-Caulking Circular Skywindow https://youtu.be/ip7W5LS-zqk

We (Morris Community Church) had our "last church fellowship service gathering" the church building..

We'll be meeting in rental and other places afterwards..


Donated blood at this sports bar in downtown St. Paul while I was there for one weekend..

Got this gift from facebook..

(click on pic for description)


Harvest season brought a lot of "produce", so I'm thankful to God for my co-workers for giving me some healthy foods:

(thanks Nicole) and
(thanks Patty)

I went to Hmong New Year with family after Thanksgiving..

Minnesota: Hmong New Year (Nov. 24th 18')-Dance 1 https://youtu.be/UQnlgwuLm6

I would work on my parent's bathroom sink..

Learned new skills and applying what I've learned in the past too from past plumbing projects from my own home.

Karaoke-"Give me Your eyes" (originally by Brandon Heath) by Crazy lil' Sal



I was a "last minute" fill-in as a client wasn't able to come to the annual ARC Christmas Program..

I played one of the "prophets" during this "Christmas Story"

Karaoke -"First Noel" (Hymn) by Crazy lil' Sal


Thanks for checking out my 2018 reflection, which I've been doing this for the past year now (used to do it monthly). It's an opportunity to "take a break" before "life gets too busy after the "holiday season"-reflecting on God's blessings !