For Mommio

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my beautiful mother! Seriously, isn’t she stunning?

On her birthday last year, I wrote:

You’re the best mom a girl could ask for, and I’m lucky to have been raised by such a smart, funny, independent and classy woman.

You’ve taught me to live consciously, to be wise with my money, to be respectful of my health, to love reading and learning. You gave me a place to live when I wanted to fly away from the nest, but didn’t know quite where or how to land. When I was ready, you supported me in finding my own way. I can never thank you enough for everything.

And this year I want to add:

Thank you for not only helping me find my wings, but encouraging me — even though I know it was hard for you — to fly and fly and fly so very far away. I wasn’t brave enough until you gave me that final push.

I’ll be home soon, momma bird. Can’t wait to give you a huge, belated-birthday hug.

Lots of love from across the world and under the sea,

❤ Devie-Doodle

I am now one of those people who drinks hot coffee and eats hot soup while sitting in the sun in the middle of a 95-degree day.

Eeyore mug for the win.

P.S. I finished my open water scuba diving certification yesterday and am doing five more dives over the next two days to earn my advanced certification!

I’ll learn how to perfect my buoyancy, do underwater photography, do a deep dive (30m), dive a shipwreck and dive AT NIGHT!

I didn’t expect to love diving as much as I do… AND apparently you burn about 400 calories per dive. So there you go!

Catching up

I’ve now left my little island paradise — and these epic sunrises — behind.



Ridiculous. There’s something about waking up at the crack of dawn specifically to watch the sunrise that makes the rest of the day so much better.

Now I’m… on another island paradise. Pardon me for the lack of variety.

This time, I’m on a mission to get my open-water SCUBA diving certification!

Today was Day 0 — just watching a few short videos — and tomorrow we’ll actually get suited up and in the water! The schedule is a lie… there is no pool. The pool is a little thing called the Gulf of Thailand.

Word on the island is that whale sharks have been spotted on nearly every dive over the last month, including today. Um, AWESOME!! Perhaps I’ll see one tomorrow?

Aaand to end this on a random note… here’s my latest travel post on Answering Oliver:

Here’s to the Great Ones

Backward and forward

Once upon a time, I was a badass.

I ran a sub-2 half-marathon on one of Seattle’s hottest days.

I jumped over fire.

I took on a triathlon without really knowing how to swim.

And I ran the shit out of a 4:15 marathon.


I haven’t run in 16 days.

I probably couldn’t run more than 5 miles, and even that would be a struggle.

I’ve lost so much muscle.

I’ve put on a good 10-15 pounds (I don’t even wanna know).

And I probably couldn’t do any of that stuff that used to make me so proud.

All of this is due to traveling the world. Lacking a routine and fitness goals.

I traded one set of dreams for another, I suppose.

Looking backward, I hardly recognize the strong, fit, determined person above.

But looking forward, I see her again.

My future holds many things.

A sub-4 marathon.

Boston, maybe.


Those dreams are still there — just on the back-burner for now.

I’ll have to start over, but I’ve done that before.

18 months before my first marathon, I could barely run a mile.

But I’ve run hundreds of miles since then, and traveled many thousands.

I trust that my body will remember what to do.

My mind is the one that will have to get off the hammock and focus.

With the help of my heart, which constantly aches to lace up and hit the road.

We’ll get back on track when I return home in May.

Together, we’ll answer the call that echoes from my former days of badassery.



Do. Not. Stop.

Thai foods I will miss

OK, so these are just packaged foods, but deal with it.

BANANA CAKE: Tastes exactly like your mom’s homemade banana bread, but is conveniently packaged for easy breakfast or snack consumption for 12 baht (39 cents) from 7-11.

You cannot throw a rock in Thailand without hitting a 7-11, by the way. Tomorrow I’m going to a remote Thai island that has not changed much in the last 20 years… except for the addition of a 7-11.

PUMPKIN CHIPS: Thin, crunchy, lightly sweetened, delicious bites of pumpkin glory. I found these at a Phuket supermarket today and am already addicted. I can’t tell you much about them because everything on the package is in Thai, and I bet I’ll never be able to find them again.

Someone should grab a buttercup squash, a mandolin slicer, a bit of glaze and some sesame seeds, roast the crap out of some pumpkin chips, take a photo, pin it and become a Pinterest legend. You are welcome.

 MANGO STICKY RICE EVERYTHING: Dairy Queen looks a little different around here — it’s all about mango and mango sticky rice, baby! I did not try any of these because clearly I’m a mango sticky rice purist. Can you imagine eating that mango Blizzard with rice in the cone? Ca-razy!

But mango sticky rice itself is the bomb.

Also, if you want to learn the full story behind this photo of me alone and in the dark at the Chiang Mai airport, you can go to here.

I will go ahead and ruin the ending for you: EIGHTY-NINE MOSQUITO BITES.

THE AIRPORT HAS GONE DARK. Apparently it is BYO headlamp. (I get the feeling that I’m not quiiiite supposed to be here right now.)

The automatic sinks have also gone off, so I had to use some of my precious drinking water to rinse the soap off my hands. Must ration it for another five hours or so.

Welcome to Survivor: Chiang Mai.

Cannot believe this is my life right now.