Heading to Thailand soon

So it is almost time for us to head out to Thailand again. This trip will be extra special since we are celebrating my grandmother’s 84 birthday. Squire and I will be taking her to Thailand to visit my dad and see the sites. We have some extra special things planned for her but she actually may read this so I won’t give it away.

Things to do to prep for the trip:

Remember what Thailand is like and plan accordingly.

Thailand is hot and humid (mosquitoes). My friend at work also visits Thailand because she has family there and recommends staying hydrated by drinking coconut water. They don’t have deet products there, bring your own if you are a mosquito magnet, which I am and which I will be bringing (they have travel size containers).

Try to pack lightly. They have a lot of the things you will want there, no need to bring the kitchen sink. Thin long sleeves and pants will probably save you from the sun and the mosquitoes. Laundry services are widespread and ridiculously cheap. Taking advantage of these things will help your back and make you travel ready for any opportunity.

Remember to say thank you. Tourism is very important to Thailand, they even offer tax incentives to those that take part in jobs that cater to tourists. So this means a few things, 1) you can find someone that speaks english in Thailand pretty easily, 2) they are used to tourists, 3) they can pick you out of a crowd. In other words, being nice is only going to help you out so say (as phonetically accurate as possible) “kahp kuhn” kah (female)/krap (male) and hello doesn’t hurt either “sahwahdee” kah (female)/krap (male). And for a bonus, they like their spices in Thailand so “peht” means hot, put “mai” before it and it means “no spice.” Don’t be surprised if that add a little anyway though, they may think it doesn’t have too much flavor without the spice.

Okay, pau for now, I could write way more than I thought.

Learning about life

Hi, Everyone.

I have been remiss and lost in work. This year has gone by especially fast with new responsibilities. I love it and don’t shy from challenges but I am glad that I now have the time (to take a day off) and share my thoughts in a random fashion.

Cecil the Lion has made me realize a couple of things. If you don’t know the story you should definitely google it. It has amazed me in the public outcry has been so negative and in a sense people have been flagrant in their distaste of him with no care for the other people (like his family) that are being caught in the crossfire. I asked my friend about this and she emphatically told me, “No, he is the one that put his family in this situation,” and that is what stays with me. We all should have an obligation to the people around us, that love you and you supposedly love to not do things that would negatively impact them. Killing (call it what it is) impacts people no matter what.

So 1) all of this blowback, etc, really is his fault and 2) it is hard to think about killing something that you have pet before.

A few years ago my husband and I went to Thailand and in Chiang Mai we went to Tiger Kingdom. We had the opportunity to pet a few of the tigers. But when I heard this story I thought of being able to touch such an amazing animal and the complete sadness that this person didn’t see them that way and chose to make it’s death a defining memory.

Something for me to remember and document I guess, especially since I will be able to go back to Thailand in 2016. I can’t wait!

Sketch Video – Juon Gets a Job

Squire and I got to do something new that we just wanted to share. And of course, thank our friends for adding some extra fun in our lives. Silly and not scary, we hope you enjoy.

And THANK YOU to our friends that helped us with this. Jeff Orig, video master extraordinaire, Gabriella Marchetti, Shannon Griffin, Jennifer Waihee Polk, and Robert Kevin Garcia Doyle. Awesome = this group of fabulous people.

Juon Gets a Job from Jeff Orig on Vimeo.

Juon Gets a Job

Producer Monica Coldwell
Producer Squire Coldwell
Director/Producer Jeff Orig
Writer Squire Coldwell
Editor Shannon Griffin
Camera Jeff Orig
Sound Gabriella Marchetti
Juon Monica Coldwell
James R Kevin Doyle
Jackie Jen Waihee
Jacob Squire Coldwell

My new friends

My new friend

So there are all types of critters around the Nature Center,  especially since we are surrounded by wilderness to an extent.
I’ve known for a while that these guys would be found in many of the nooks and crannies of our office but I finally have gotten a friend of my own. He is very brave and I hope I get to feed him again.

My new friend

Well that was short lived.

So if you didn’t know yet, I’ve changed jobs already. I barely stayed three months in my old job but jumped directly into my new one. 

As I was growing up I always believed that leaving a job (especially so soon after getting one) to be a bad thing but I have to say in the last ten years, I’ve had no patience for putting up with random bs. I have been VERY lucky considering this fact and am as grateful, if not more, that it has worked out for me.

And yes, I love my new job. I am working for Hawaii Nature Center. I don’t know if the bloom will fade but it is nice to be somewhere, where it does bloom outside. Though I can honestly say that I am a mosquito magnet and am now worried that I’ll die of deet poisoning from Off products.



Working in the world of non-profit (for me)

I had a couple of epiphanies yesterday that I wanted to share, just because it’s fresh and still on my mind.

I started a new job a month ago (ending the 4th week today). It is a great place to work and we provide care and support for children that have been affected by sexual abuse, and for my job in particular, abuse in general. I can’t think of a more rewarding thing to do. When I first started working in theatre as an actor, my first paid job was with the Sex Abuse Treatment Center. We did a show that focused on preventing date rape. It is interesting to now be in another place that bookends that experience. It is hard at times because it is a subject matter that I find to be a sore spot for me. I think I’ve figured out why though. I’m a romantic at heart. It could be a libra trait. So when it comes to this type of abuse I feel that it really takes love away from those that suffer from this crime and that hurts me. So that was epiphany number one.

Epiphany number two, no matter where you work people are not going to always get a long. I had a hard time coming into this job because it was pretty obvious from day one that there were issues. I just realized something though that I really need to work into my daily life. I can’t look at people as I would like them to be, I need to start to see people as they are in front of me. It is definitely a hard road for me. But I’ll try to work on it. I promise.



Obsession: Our Technology Usage

I have always been fascinated by mass manipulation. I try to avoid it as much as possible and I feel that there is no better place to see it mirrored than with our youth and their use of technology.
Scary as it may seem, we are trying to engage our 2-yr old nephew in using words and the best way we were able to is by buying him a little cell phone/book kit this past Christmas. He immediately picked up the phone and started to mimic the sound of “hello.” I was mortified (he didn’t even notice the books were connected but knew exactly what to do with the phone).

This coming March 7 at sundown begins “Unplug Day” and it ends on sundown, March 8. I am going to try it out, although I am not a hardcore user of technology I bet I use it more than I think I do.

On a side note:

I found out about this day on Upworthy.com, a site that I’ve been frequenting for my technology/parenthood news (I have two nephews and a niece growing up in world 2.0 that I care about very much). The site is full of stuff of interest and the idea behind why they created it is one I can definitely get behind.

Youtube …X-Factor UK 2013, Christopher Maloney

I admit that I’m a crybaby. I prefer not to watch anything if I know it will be sad. I think I got worse once I got married. Such an emotional experience for me and I turned into a faucet whenever I was moved by anything. I admit to two things about this video 1) I don’t like to watch reality tv for the manipulation factor, however I like the talent of singing and dancing so will fast forward to avoid personal story I’ve also limited the intake of these types of shows to one at most. 2) this one caught me off guard because I didn’t realize till the end that they interwove the story into the entire piece, that being said, I didn’t mind too much because it has to be one of the most genuine and relatable performances I’ve seen from one of these shows. I was so happy for him and it made me feel good to see a person like him succeed.

Love the song and the performance.

Found: Young R & B Artist, Ahsan. Thank You Stevie Wonder and Youtube.

So I have spent too much time on Youtube this past 36 hours (probably three hours worth of watching) but it has inspired me to try a different approach to my blog. I know videos and random excerpts are the new norm and I’ve decided to link some of my favorites here to share as I find the ones that stand out or mean the most to me at the moment.

This weekend of youtube started because I was going through old cds I had made and happened upon the Rent song, “Seasons of Love” featuring Stevie Wonder. He is one of my favorite musicians for all the obvious reasons. And it reminded me of one of my favorite Stevie Wonder performances, a live duet I found on youtube a few years ago with Stevie Wonder and Tony Bennett, “For Once in My Life,” for Tony Bennett’s Birthday Bash. And that’s when I went down the youtube rabbit hole and started to click on those cursed recommended videos.

My favorite Stevie Wonder live performance.


I really like Stevie Wonder and I was curious about a video captioned with him surprising a singer named Ahsan in studio about a year ago. Mostly because who would be granted such an honor to have Stevie Wonder pay them a visit. I immediately liked the singer’s voice when he started to sing, “Ribbon in the Sky,” and when Stevie Wonder appeared my respect for both only became greater.

Great reaction to a visit from Stevie Wonder.


And now for the kicker, Ahsan was about 14 years old when he met Stevie Wonder. Great story for forever.

Aunty Acid

I discovered a comic strip character that I really like. Her name is Aunty Acid by Ged Backland. She reminds me a lot of Sophie, another acerbic-witted woman comic strip character, but with a tinge more softness on occasion.

Some of my recent favorites are below, the final pick also had a little pidgin (language) tinge, which made her a front runner for me.