Life After Loss || Celebrating Life with the Whole World

One reason I love to travel is for being close to nature, which often makes me realize how small my pain is. It’s only a drop of water in the ocean. Last week I went to San Francisco for a business trip, and I extended it as a mini vacation for myself. I visited Muir Woods National Monument, having the most magical and powerful experiences.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

When I stepped on the tour bus, it was full already. There was an empty seat right behind the driver. I asked the woman who was to the left of the open seat if I could take it, and she said, “Yes, please!” We started talking on the way to the Muir Woods National Monument. When we stopped to have a quick peek of the Golden Gate Bridge, we were already feeling quite comfortable with each other. My new friend was working very hard to help me with the photos below.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

She is a first-generation immigrant, like me, and she was on a business trip as well. We were both so impressed with the stories about the Muir Woods National Monument that our bus driver told us. When we arrived, we decided to continue hanging out together and taking the hike together too.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

I’ve never seen a tree so tall and wide in my entire life. The tallest tree in the monument stands 258 feet tall. Which is insane, considering the seeds for these trees roughly equal the size of a tomato seed. The oldest tree is 1,200 years old (most are between 500 and 800 years old). As well as tall, trees at Muir Woods are exceptionally wide, reaching over 14 feet (you cannot hug one, they are too big!).

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

My new friend and I were like little kids, so connected with the woods. We were both touched by the stories about the family circles. Hundreds of years ago a single large redwood grew here. Then, disaster struck. The trunk of the large redwood died, perhaps by repeated and severe wildfires. From here you can see the original tree trunk still standing upright, now a dead and blackened snag. Despite such terrible damage, the tree did not die. Below the ground, its massive root system was full of vitality. Before long, hundreds of young, bright green burl sprouts began to come up around the circle formed by the root crown of the original tree. Some of those sprouts have grown into the full-sized trees that today stand in a circle around the original trunk.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

It’s like life. I went through hard times in my life, from fighting hunger to family abuse, and domestic violence. Then I finally found my true love and married him, and last year he passed away. I have enough reasons to hate life, but the longing for life keeps me alive and make me reborn over and over again… like those thousand-year-old trees. They’ve been through everything. Yet, they’re still there, calm and loving.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

The night I came home, I received a message from my new friend. I was tearing up when I read it. “Hi, Grace! It’s your friend from the Muir Woods forest 🌳. Just read some of your blogs… I’m sorry about your husband. Thank you for giving me perspective… You see, I’ve got cancer almost three years ago, had a surgery, then chemo. My hair grew back but not my eyebrows. But I gained a tremendous appreciation for life and meetings like ours. Your blog showed me how a family suffers when cancer hits one of its members. What can I do to ease their pain? Anyways, I’m going home tonight and will hug them warmly. And you, my random friend, be strong and know that you are not alone. Hugs 🤗” By the way, the woman in the photo below is her.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

Those trees and my new friend made me appreciate so much again for being alive. There are no bigger reasons to celebrate life than just simply being alive! Always choose to face the sun. If it’s cloudy, I’ll be my own sun.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

You can read all the Life After Loss series here and Living with Cancer series here.

Life After Loss || Celebrating Life With The Whole World

Photo credit: Grace Liang/Bogna

Thank you for reading! If you like what you read, please comment below, or share it with your friends. Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and Twitter for new updates. For all the amazing fashion/beauty and lifestyle products I share, also follow me on Instagram. Remember to check out my Instagram stories daily to know me better as a person. Finally, don’t forget to follow me on YouTube for my fashion/beauty and lifestyle videos. Have a great day and see you soon!

|TODAY’S LINKUP PARTY:|


Grace

colorandgrace.com occasionally receives vendor/brand sponsorships for mentioning their products and services.

What to Wear to a Hot Air Balloon Festival

Road trips, outdoor concerts, pool parties, camping, and all kinds of festivals are the best part of summer for me.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

In the small town of Howell, Michigan, that I first lived when I moved to America, there’s an annual hot air balloon festival every June. It’s called the Michigan Challenge Balloonfest. It’s been our family’s go-to festival for years.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

Every year, there are more than 50 spectacular balloons that will fill the Southeast Michigan skies with color. The Michigan Challenge is not only a ballooning competition. It’s a weekend filled with excitement, entertainment, and fun.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

This annual event attracts more than 100,000 spectators. The colorful balloons aren’t the only attraction. The Michigan Challenge Balloonfest features live entertainment… skydivers, stunt kite demonstrations, a balloon glow, fireworks, an arts festival, and a carnival. Plus, even more, with their Family Fun Tent, and Landing Zone area for kids!

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

This year, I went there again with my stepdaughter and her fiancé.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

We had so much fun capturing some fun shoots.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

So, what do you wear to a hot air balloon festival? Of course, a comfy outfit. Since you might be walking, and standing for hours. Can’t forget sitting on the grass for hours, too. 😉 A comfy summer outfit, for me, is jeans and a T-shirt. But, there are more options than a plain white tee and jeans. An outstanding festival outfit is all in the art of details and layering.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

Tee: Pick a graphic tee instead of a plain white tee

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

Jeans: Pick ripped jeans instead of traditional blue jeans

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

The final touch will be a low chunky heel. These natural colored booties I’m wearing elongate my legs. A lace trench coat adds a feminine touch, and it will keep you warm from the cool evening air. Don’t forget a pair of cool sunglasses to make you look like a rock star!

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

Leave a comment, to share your pick of the must-have pieces for a hot air balloon festival!

You can read all my What To Wear series including what I have worn when I traveled around the world and for special occasions. Hope those posts will be helpful for you! 🙂

WHAT TO WEAR TO A HOT AIR BALLOON FESTIVAL

Photo credit: Grace Liang/@campinggirlash

Thank you for reading! If you like what you read, please comment below, or share it with your friends. Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and Twitter for new updates. For all the amazing fashion/beauty and lifestyle products I share, also follow me on Instagram. Remember to check out my Instagram stories daily to know me better as a person. Finally, don’t forget to follow me on YouTube for my fashion/beauty and lifestyle videos. Have a great day and see you soon!

|TODAY’S LINKUP PARTY:|


Grace

colorandgrace.com occasionally receives vendor/brand sponsorships for mentioning their products and services.

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