FC: Chau Tran | Life is a collection of journeys
1: Good friends are the rare jewels of life...difficult to find and impossible to replace.
2: Good friends are the rare jewels of life...difficult to find and impossible to replace. | Timeline | 1. Newborn – on September 3rd, 1993 in a middle of a labor, electricity went off causing life threaten for the baby. Finally, she and her mother were safe after 3 hours fighting with life. Her father gave her a name of white pearl meaning in Vietnamese – Chau.
3: 2. Kindergarten – first day of kindergarten, mom said “you kept crying and making excuses like you have to use bathroom, your stomach hurts so you can skip school” | 3. Daddy’s immigration – When Chau turned 3, her father moved away to United States, to look for better future for her.
4: Best Buds | Timeline | 4. Kindergarten graduation – Turned out chau really likes school, she woke up on time and be good to earn her pink super A flower
5: Friends are the chocolate chips in the cookies of life. | 5. Second mom – 2002. In elementary school – Van Hanh, she met a teacher who is still her ideal woman after years knowing. | 6. First brother – 2002, Tri – first brother was born
6: “Other things may change us, but we start and end with family” ~ Anthony Brandt | 7. Second brother – 2003, Uy – second brother was born | Timeline | 8. Elementary graduation – Chau’s father flew off across the ocean to attend her elementary graduation ceremony, she was ranked top 10 and made her parent proud.
7: Good times! | 9. Brothers’ first school year – 2005
8: “When you look at your life the greatest happiness are family happinesses” ~Dr. Joyce Brothers | Timeline | 10. Move to United States – 2008 to live with her father
9: All things grow better with love. | 11. Spring break 2011, first time in the windy city Chicago. After 3 months she got her licensed, she decided to not keep waiting for age to come, but to take a trip on her own to Chicago – 4 hour drive from Louisville. It was a stunning experience
10: “The love of a family is life's greatest blessing” | Timeline | 12. Junior prom – A glamorous prom night with friends | 13. Summer 2011- Start a job as helper at a nail salon
11: “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” ~Dr Seuss | 15. Spring break 2012, First time in Washington DC for 100th year of cherry blossom with Phi Le. | 14.Spring break 2012 – accepted to University of Louisville
12: What make school memories are so unforgettable? One answer is the place, activity, most importantly, people. When I was in 6th grade, my class had 30 students and all are girls, we truly care for each other as we were sibling, we share foods, spend time outside of school as a whole big group. It was an exciting time of my life when I have 29 “sisters” who would laugh nonstop about thing only we can understand. Pranks and other jokes are the usual routine of the class and when there is punishment, all of us get to share. There was time when we fights about gossiping, boys, and there was moment when we shed tears. It was the last month of school, when everything was set for me to move to United States, the atmosphere in class got a little bitter. What I appreciated the most is even though it was the last 30 days; they spent each day writing me a diary notebook. 29 pages of different hand writing, of stories we shared. “Just in case you get lonely in America, this diary will remind you of how much you are loved” – they said. This diary is a way to cheer me up even for now, the more I remembered about the 29 sisters, and the better I felt when I have people to care about me. For me, as I get older, it gets harder to find a true friend, so this memory is a priceless gift.
13: Priceless school memory
14: High school graduation has come around the corner, kids who have everything set, they are just waiting for the moment to come, and unlike kids who are still trying to make the moment happens, like me. I have been lacking in studying this year, this is the first time that I treated myself so horribly and screwed my life. 18th birthday was a race between me against independence life, I finally have the freedom that I had been yearning to have, in disadvantage I learned failure happens every day, not only when there are exams and tests | On the threshold of future
15: Adult life has not only produce worries but stress for my brain. It’s a new world where homework is not the only concern, hatred can’t be shown, and people acts like on stage in real life. The fear of future and failure once discouraged me so much that I felt lost sometime. I remember being a kid, each time I fell, I cried and stood up with the help of someone else when grown up people learned each time they failed and get up by their own. When there’s no more available help around, it became strange being on my own. But after a few time running away, I found the cure too anxiously. The question is what I can do if I was not afraid. I could hardly catch up to other kids who acknowledge about grown up process but it’s only the beginning in journey of life, I might fail or succeed later on, no one knows. Why not find a way to my dreams? Why should there be excuses? Beginning is always the hardest, like new born babies always cry, but it’s the sign of being alive. As a grown up, it’s not only about survive, but to live, I told myself I’ll get what I want and I’ll make it happen. | On the threshold of the Future
16: My childhood turned out to be quite amusing, as soon as my brothers were born. Age difference couldn’t come between us; we get along better than any sister-brother relationship in our family. My first brother is younger than me 10 years, older than the last sibling 1 year. It’s only a year difference, but the older one-Phillip tends to be more responsible, while my youngest brother-Long is quite carelessly active. Back into 2006, when Phillip turned 4, to give him a best kid’s party, my parents prepared a day earlier. Of course when grown up has something to do, kids are supposed to stay aside with baby sitter, somewhere out of their way. Long and Phillip played with their toys in a room with nanny, I was old enough to be on my own in a separate room, everything seemed to go smoothly until I made a decision to boil water for noodles. Boiling water was easy to me as playing with toys, but I didn’t remember it was dangerous for kids. After hearing the noise of boiled water, I should have left the pot on stove instead of taking it down on the ground! I was thinking that made lifting the pot easier to pour water
17: Within a minutes of me walking to the bathroom, long made his way to the kitchen, unexpectedly burned his little arm with hot water. Not only my parent felt regretting that they should have took care of the kids, but I was regretting my action too. It was an accident, though the pressure of being responsible was packed in my mind. When I saw a 3 years old kid cried because his arm was hurting, and the large part of it was my fault, my feeling was indescribable, I just wished I could rewind past. I learned an important lesson, that is when kids around; everything can get dangerous for them. | Scary childhood moment
18: I used to be depending on my parent before I turned 18; making money has not been in my mind before. Summer of 2011, I was finally allowed into the work force, with the confidence of being good student in school, I went out to look for jobs. My thinking is “who wouldn’t want to hire a girl has good grade in school? “That was too innocent. It’s not about school performance when you work in fast food restaurant, or being a server, employees look for people who can work smooth and fast. But every place I went, they don’t need people, I didn’t get any call back at all. It was impossible to make money on my own. Luckily, a friend of my mom needs a reception for her nail salon, and I was picked | Proudest moment
19: The reality of working is boss will not treat you like relative or friends. A reception supposed to greet customer, take calls, and payment, but turn out I did anything the boss said need to be done in the nail salon. Whether it’s re-fuel nail polish or the laundry. The works keep me busy all the time when I’m at the nail shop even when there’s no customer. But in a good way, this time I have a job and make money. After 1 month of working, I was too anxious about my first payment ever that I couldn’t sleep. The moment boss handled me my payment - $400 after tax; I squeezed it with both hands. After a long wait, I finally have held my own money for real. | If one person doesn’t work, he won’t know how great it feels to hold money that actually comes from hard working. For me, it marked the start of being a grown up.
20: Favorite Teacher | She is closed as my friend, understand me like my mom, and treat me like sister
21: Teachers are known for students’ best help in school, being a closed to teacher is an advantage. I have never tried to get close to any teacher because I was confident with my grades; I think I don’t need any extra help to get to where I want to be. There was one teacher showed me how teacher and student can get more than a regular relationship at school. In 2nd grade, piano was my interest, lesson in schools didn’t fulfill my wonder about keynote, I wanted to reach out for more expert helps. Mrs. Thao was a young new piano teacher moved to my school at the time. Like a faith, she understood my interest in piano and was kind enough to show me more lessons after school. Her lessons are always simple, she taught me from basic Alphabet’s song by playing it slowly, and then I repeated. After my skills improve on keyboard, reading notes is the next step, a different level that take forever to master for a kid. Mrs. Thao patiently find example to help me memorize all the notes, there’s pink lollipop for Do, cookie for Re, and so on. She was the reason I got so good at piano. After I can play piano and read note on my own, the experience with her give me a courage to overcome fear of “I have no talent, I can’t do it” thought. Our relationship gets out of school zone, she took me out to eat, come to give me my birthday present each year, regardless of a busy schedule. She was indeed, my second mom. After Mrs. Thao’s wedding, she moved to California, US, have kids and have a peaceful life. Years later, I got a hold with her by email and we started talking again, it was the first few months I moved to Kentucky, United States. We traveled half of the globe to meet again here on a dream land of America to continue a lifetime relationship.
22: A decade has past, I hope you are reading this in your own house or on a vacation somewhere in Europe, if you are not; you have failed the first goal that I set for years. | In 2012 I’m suffering with high school graduation and where do I go from here, which road should I take, whether it’s a right path. You, the future of me in 10 years should not wonder about these questions because you have found your way and should be enjoying adult problems. Unlike me, you have to have a good financial base without college expense or any other debt, because that’s what cost me my senior year. I indeed learned a good lesson with working and studying, cause my lack of attention, the feeling of rushing into work force. I plan to be in college for 5 years at the most for bachelor degree in accountant, so 10 years should be enough for a master degree with MBA certification. Accountant is a good field since every company needs at least one accountant, and you just like me, playing with numbers and shapes to kill time, so financial calculating is the right choice for now.
23: One of the most important things to do before I die is to get mom a neat house on her homeland – Vietnam. I expected that you are at the point where it can be done or at least 90% of the way. I hope you have not forgotten your promise that to make her proud, to reward her with degree and knowledge. She went through a lot of pain, waiting for the day to see you succeed. Paris is on my list of place to go in 10 years, I recently found out that travel doesn’t have to cost so much as long as you have good control with what’s need and want. I set marked in Chicago, DC, Baltimore, Virginia in 2 last year of high school. With $400 each trip, I gained tons of experience. I’m looking forward for more amazing time in different cities, especially the city of love. Keep up your passion! Now it’s your turn to write a letter to 2032 Chau ! And remember life goes on ! Good luck! | Letter to future me
24: PH - Beef Noodle Soup is a traditional dish of Vietnamese, served as breakfast, lunch and dinner. In cooking world, there is variety of way to cook pho, but there are three must have ingredient: beef meat, white noodles, and soup. The better the soup is, the richer nutrient pho get. In order to cook good soup for pho, chief can’t use fish sauce and seasoning powder, or the soup won’t have the clear color of beef. Using white carrots help purify the soup. | Ingredient: 5 pounds of beef bone 2 pounds of eye round beef 1 white daikon sliced A few slices of ginger Green onions cinnamon sticks 2 ounces star aniseeds Beef balls (optional) Instruction:
25: Instruction: 1. Boil a 16 quartz water pot, place beef bones and turn stove to the max. Wait until beef bones are boiled, turn off the stove, pour out left over water, clean beef bones by cold water. 2. Place the cooked beef bone into another boiled water, add onion, daikon. Put aniseed, cinnamon stick, peppercorn, and ginger into a tied bag and add to the soup. Keep it on a medium low heat for 2 hours then add salt, sugar as needed. Wait for 2 hour until the water turns clear. Then the soup is ready. Because pho is at its best when serving hot, so it usually prepare right before the meal. How to serve: Soak pho noodle into hot water until it shows up soft. Slice eye round beef into small chewable slice, place onions and beef balls in the bowl. Add soup and its set Serve with lime, hot hoisin sauce on the table. Vietnamese people usually have a strong passion with pho, Vietnamese girls always try to find her recipe, I’m also on my way, but not yet discovered. | Favorite Food !
28: Families are like fudge...mostly sweet with a few nuts.
30: I love my big brother
33: “To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there.” ~Barbara Bush
35: Life brings simple pleasures to us every day. It is up to us to make them wonderful memories. ~Cathy Allen
37: The family is one of nature's masterpieces. ~ George Santayana
38: Sometimes being a brother is even better than being a superhero. ~ Marc Brown
40: Family Fun
41: "Even though you are in my home for a short time You are in my heart forever."
43: A hug a day keeps the monsters away.
44: Hug a little, Love a lot!!
45: Life brings simple pleasures to us every day. It is up to us to make them wonderful memories. - Cathy Allen