Projects & Interests
"Well begun is half done."-Benjamin Franklin
Being a full-time student, young professional, and family member can be a lot of fun. However, I sometimes just need to do something a little less stressful. What do I do when I need a break? Keep reading to find out some of my favorite things!
Working and Playing in Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge
Welcoming Travelers to Black Spire Outpost.
Ever since the opening of Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge in May 2019, I have been honored to follow the adventures of Chewbacca, Rey, Kylo Ren, and all of the rest of the residents of Black Spire Outpost on Batuu.
Whether working in The Marketplace as a Villager, supporting the Resistance as a Sympathizer, guiding Force-sensitive builders as a Gatherer, or visiting as a Traveler, there is always something to keep me busy!
Through the Disney Play! app and its immersive Datapad function, I have earned credits for helping the Resistance fight the First Order. I have also acquired a reputation for taking risks while flying the Millennium Falcon across the galaxy.
Playing Card Games
Encouraging strategic thinking through physical gameplay.
Everyone plays games. Whether they are word games or role-playing adventures, Scrabble or Chess, people rely on games to provide mental stimulation, social integration, and educational value. Increasingly, however, most choose to play first-person shooter games online. By sharing my physical game collection with others, I am helping highlight the educational, mental and social importance of real games played in-person with others.
I seek out unique and unusual games with fascinating stories, gorgeous art, and intuitive gameplay that require strategic thinking, role-playing, and cooperation.
To assist in this goal, I have begun a new YouTube playlist, where I am uploading gameplay from one of my favorite games of all time--Unfair. This theme park-inspired card game for 2-5 players is straightforward to learn and provides endless amounts of replayability. Even if you have little to none experience playing modern card games, you should definitely check out my videos at the link below to discover what you are missing!
In the future, I will be playing more fascinating games!
Writing Reports, Essays, Books, and Stories
People learn best through telling stories.
After a long day of thinking, my brain can no longer hold facts and figures. Instead, I seek stories. One of my Physics professors once told me that he had two choices when preparing to write his doctoral thesis: he could write a lengthy academic paper than only his review board would read, or he could write a simple, understandable article in plain English that non-physicists could understand. He chose to write for the common man, and I have, too.
Someone once said that "Writing is a way of thinking on paper." I prefer to say that "Thinking is a way of writing in your head." At night, I used to have dreams in which I was typing every word that flashed through my brain---one painstaking letter at a time. Thankfully, my typing skills have improved, but my fingers still can't keep up with my thoughts. Here I have collected some of my most successful attempts at putting thoughts on paper.
Playing and Writing Music
Music to my ears.
Ever since I was very young, I have been immersed in music. I first learned to read music on the piano, progressed steadily to the recorder, moved to the saxophone, and even tried the trombone. As a result, I enjoy listening to music: but not bagpipes! The two years I spent playing in the Shasta Middle School Jazz Band taught me the importance of professionalism, dedication, and teamwork.
My band traveled across the Pacific Northwest, winning multiple performance awards and honorable mentions at festivals from Newport, Oregon to Bellevue, Washington. I invite you to watch, listen, and enjoy!
Creating with Lego
Building without limits.
My parents gave me my first Lego set before I even understood how to put sets together. If not for them, I would not be the Lego fanatic that I am today. In my free time, I build new and fantastic creations out of the pieces in my ever-growing collection.
Part of my fascination with Lego is due to its infinite possibilities. I can build anything that I can imagine with Lego bricks--banks, spaceships, lightcycles, and even roller coasters! Lego is used in schools, robotics competitions, art galleries, design firms, and corporate retreats.
In 2013, had the incredible, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to attend the Lego KidsFest in Portland, Oregon. Four years later, I attended The Art of the Brick exhibit at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. This inspiration has kept me building things like the creation below:
Developing the CatanFusion System
Solving problems makes sense.
I love to solve problems, and my favorite board game has a LOT of problems. Ever since the first edition was released, fans have tried to clarify the instructions and make the expansions compatible with each other. The task is so great, no one has ever succeeded. Until now.
I have created CatanFusion.com, a brand-new website dedicated to bringing simplicity and strategy back to the world of Catan. Through instructional videos and articles, I explain how you can turn your confusion into CatanFusion. It's time for you to have fun instead of frustration. So why wait?