Family, Travel

Featured in Redfin blog article on Huntington Beach, CA

I’ve been visiting my parents in Huntington Beach, California over 25 years. My dad moved from Northern to Southern California for work. They’ve since stayed in their retirement.

Lori and I just returned on the weekend from visiting family there. We’ve had to go more often these past few years to support our parents as they age. These trips crossed off one place I wanted to visit once the pandemic eased.

Every time I visit I go down to the beach and pier. This last time the tide was the lowest that I’ve ever seen it:

Redfin blog reached out to me to see if I’d share a tip about visiting Huntington Beach. Check out the recent Redfin article I was featured in: 

Call it by the nickname “Surf City USA,” Huntington Beach has become a destination for many people moving to Southern California. With great museums and plenty of sunny and beachside outdoor activities, it’s no wonder Huntington Beach is also home to about 198,700 people. 

As more people move to Huntington Beach, it’s important to keep in mind that the median home sale price is $1,180,000 and the average sale price per square foot is $658. Or if you’re a renter, the average rent price for a 2-bedroom apartment in Huntington Beach is $2,910.

If those prices are out of your budget, don’t worry. We’ve rounded up a list of the 8 best affordable Huntington Beach suburbs to consider living in – and they’re all under a 35-minute drive from the city. You’ll be close enough to explore Huntington Beach’s best activities without paying the price of living there.

Read the full article here: 8 Most Affordable Huntington Beach Suburbs to Live In | Redfin

We’ll need to go back more frequently this year to especially care for Lori’s dad who lives about 45 minutes away. It’s great to also see my parents each time and we’re grateful they let us stay with them.

With views like these at the beach and pier it won’t be hard to visit!


FanDuel’s Portrayal of Psoriasis Just Doesn’t Get It

The “clever” Thanksgiving advertisement by FanDuel caught my attention immediately. It wasn’t because I love to watch sports or that I bet on games (I don’t). Rather, their stating of the odds of a family member mentioning their psoriasis at the family gathering felt off-putting as someone who has lived with it for most of my life.

An older women at a holiday gathering is pulling her sleeve up to show that she has a psoriasis rash on it. A graphic shows that there is a 3 to 1 chance that her showing her skin is TMI (too much information)
Screenshot of a FanDuel advertisement on November 24, 2022 taken on my IPhone.

I appreciate how the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF) responded with this FaceBook post and debated until now whether to share my thoughts. But I feel I still need to.

As of today I hadn’t seen a response from FanDuel, but if I do I’ll amend this post. Regardless, I disagree that “everything in life is a bet,” as the commercial suggests. Thinking in these terms about others who have a serious chronic illness is insensitive and dark. Nor is it “TMI” to share about living with a chronic illness.

For much of my life I’ve fought the stigma that psoriasis is “just a rash” that is an annoyance to others.

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coronavirus, Living with Psoriasis, psoriasis

I Almost Didn’t Get My Bivalent COVID-19 Booster

One hour before my appointment at CVS pharmacy I felt deeply unsure about getting my COVID-19 booster. (Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on

I knew I wanted my annual flu shot. But I couldn’t decide on whether I really wanted to get another COVID vaccination.

To help make my decision I messaged my dermatologist the day before. I waited for the email notification that she had responded to my request for her medical advice. As of the time I left for CVS I had yet to hear back from her, but felt that she would say go ahead since we talked about getting boosted earlier in the year.

Making the Decision to Get the COVID Bivalent Booster

I didn’t get my second booster earlier this year even though I was eligible and encouraged to. I had the passing thought I might be immune to COVID already and didn’t need it. 

I’ve had multiple known exposures to people who tested positive for COVID and never got it myself (unless I had an asymptomatic case). Most recently Lori had a bout that lasted a few weeks. I didn’t sleep in the living room until a couple of days after she started feeling unwell. Not getting COVD from Lori made me feel invincible.

Having psoriasis does not suppress my immune system either. But taking a biologic (monoclonal antibody) for psoriasis that modulates my immune system edges me into a potential higher risk group for more severe COVID symptoms. Asthma is a risk factor that I had to consider as well.  Turning 50 years old makes me a candidate for a host of vaccines, including the bivalent COVID-19 booster.

Fearing Side Effects of the Vaccine

The first three Moderna jabs (initial two rounds and first booster) made me feel ill for two to three days each time. The side effects ranged from severe headache, stomach upset, sorest arm I can ever remember, sour joints throughout my body, brain fog, and low-grade fever. 

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chronic illness, Living with Psoriasis, Personal Faith

November: Empowering Others (Four Seasons of Healing) + Conclusion

Note: This is entry 12 in a study guide series called “Four Seasons of Healing: A Pathway for Those Living with Chronic Illness.” For a list of entries click here.

Part IV: Fall: Caring for Others (September to November)

November: Empowering Others

Matthew 23:37-40

And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.

James 1:27

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

2 Timothy 2:2

The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.


Many health bloggers I know started writing to process their experience. Over time others began reading their story, noting their courage and boldness. Their willingness to personally share what most people want to hide sets them apart. Eventually, writing a blog led to more opportunities to speak up for a disease state community in the media or with government authorities.

Their journey mirrors the seasons of healing outlined in this study guide: from questions and loneliness to speaking up for and helping others. What strikes me about their stories is how they reach out to others while still living and managing a chronic illness.

The call to empower and serve others does not mean one is free of struggle. Indeed, those who pass on God’s love to neighbors often need the support and love of others at the same time. Jesus’ greatest commandment reflects the notion that loving your neighbor is akin to loving yourself—something everyone naturally does.

James directs believers to also look after the needy and forgotten in society such as the widows and orphans. In addition, Paul tells Timothy to teach others what he has learned from his mentor. In doing so he ensures that future generations benefit from his hard-earned wisdom.

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