Today I lost my rug. Ian and I opened our storage unit only to find a pipe going thru the top of the unit leaked, burning holes in my beautiful Pottery Barn rug (circa 2002) and leaving some gnarly rust stains on my beautiful Pottery Barn couch (oh how I miss that discount!). And the storage company, being the nice people that they are, told us it wasn't their problem. As I was complaining about this in the office, a guy in there said, "Hey, there is a pipe running thru my unit as well." Well man, I have some advice for you, move it while you can; otherwise the storage company will be telling you tough luck as well! Of course, they haven't seen or heard the last from Jessica on this one! Let the war on the storage company begin...drum roll please...
What do you do when you live the worst day of your life? Blog about it, of course! After I tell you this story, you will probably realize my life has been extremely well up until this point! Now, to the story…
My story begins when we arrive at Heathrow to discover our flight from Heathrow to Calgary has been delayed by three hours. We talked to an agent there about rescheduling the second leg of our journey (from Calgary to San Francisco) for a later time. They told us we would be helped with this once we arrive in Calgary. They also told us to talk to the flight attendants when we were about an hour away from Calgary and they could help us. Now fast forward to us being on the flight. The take off was fine and immediately they started serving a meal, which is totally usual. When the flight attendants were about done serving the meal, we hit turbulence and the pilot came on saying that all the flight attendants needed to be seated and the meal service ended. After this, we endured three hours of hell. This translates into three hours of turbulence, complete with much vomiting (not on mine or Ian’s part, but most of the other passengers) and the isles cluttered with our meal that was still in front of us. If anyone tried to get out of their seats, they immediately yelled over the loudspeaker for everyone to remain seated. At one point, they actually announced that once we ran out of barf bags, we were to use the bags our blankets came in. Are you kidding me?!? What was quite weird to me was how calm everyone remained throughout this experience. You could here the occasional crying and tons of vomiting, but no one was speaking or being hysterical. You may think I am being a little dramatic, but I kind of thought our plane wasn’t going to make it. I have never been through anything like this and neither had the flight attendants (which is always reassuring). Anyway, the turbulence finally ended and the cabin got semi cleaned up. The smell of vomit never left throughout the entire flight. I think they are going to have to steam clean that plane!
Now fast forward to about an hour before our plane is supposed to land…which it is now due to land 30 minutes before our connection departs (let me remind you that we originally gave ourselves 4 hours between flights). Ian asks the flight attendant about our connection, who gets annoyed with him for asking and lets him know that many people are in the same situation as us, and we will just have to wait until we land to deal with it. Just before we land, we are told an agent of Air Canada (I say the name so you NEVER fly with them after my awful experience) will meet us at the gate to help up. We land, get off the plane, and there is no agent in sight. So we proceed thru passport control and wait for our baggage. At baggage claim, we are told there will be an agent just outside of customs to help us. Of course, we exit out of customs and there once again is no agent in sight. Seeing on the departures board that our flight has already taken off, we get into a line that is helping people who missed their transfers. We know there is another flight two and a half hours later and are hoping to be on it. We wait in this line for 45 minutes, only to be told that this desk only deals with domestic flights and we need to go upstairs. So, once again, we join another long line. At one point, we were told this was the wrong place for us to be helped and they tried to refer us to the place we had just come from, but we refused to move. Finally, we get to an Air Canada agent who is willing to help us, only to be told that not only was the flight out that night full, but all the flights on Christmas Eve were full as well. But, since Ian had already called AmEx travel, we knew there were first class seats still available for Christmas Eve. So, we mentioned this to the agent. She lets us know that since the flights tomorrow are on United (which is actually who our tickets were through), she couldn’t upgrade us. But, I convinced her to book the tickets for us and that we would go down and work it out with United. So, on to another line. At first I thought the agent at United wasn’t going to be helpful, but she quickly turned around. After I told her I refused to go on the long standby list for Christmas Eve, only to then be stuck in Canada for Christmas, she gave us the first class tickets, making us promise not to tell anyone else (you have to remember that many people on our flight from London missed the same connection we missed). So, happily we accepted the tickets. We once again called AmEx to get the details of our travel insurance (loving AmEx right now, by the way) and headed to a local hotel.
Now here I am right now, sitting in my first class seat to San Francisco, on a flight that took off almost two hours late. But, I know I will make it home for Christmas and that’s all that matters, right? I had to cancel my Christmas Eve shopping plans with my mom and don’t have any presents for anyone yet, but I am glad that I will soon be home and get to squeeze my family and tell them how much I love them and am glad to see them….awww, the joys of Christmas!
Every time I am at the airport, I am surprised by the amount of people that have no clue how security works. Honestly, you have to be living under a rock to not have flown in the past seven years and know what security is like. But, there is always the person who acts this way, and I always happen to end up behind them in the security line!
This morning in Edinburgh, the "security line director" directed me to the longest security line of the bunch, putting me right behind a family with two small children. I was already frustrated just looking at them. I knew they were going to be a "problem". Ian told me to chill, and even though I was "chill" I was still amazed at the stupidity of this family. First, there are all the large signs that tell you what you need to take off/pull out and put through the x-ray machines. But, apparently this family has never flown before AND decided that the large yellow signs were worth ignoring. Anyway, they put their bags on the belt and tried to walk through the metal detector with their stroller, coats, cell phones, shoes and more. Needless to say, they were stopped and told what needs to go through the x-ray machine. They seemed semi annoyed by this. But what they need to realize is that everyone behind them in line was semi annoyed by their ignorance. I can understand forgetting taking off your belt or something, but come on, when you are standing in line watching every other person in front of you strip, you should realize you need to do the same. People need to catch up with the times and know the rules when they travel!
Seriously, have you seen anything more disgusting?!? I came across this in the store today. It's a British ham topped with apricots and prunes. You want in on this action? I can bring it home for you!!!
It is starting to seem that I live my entire life under the cover of darkness. Seriously, the sun makes an appearance about 9am and is gone by 3:30pm! What type of day is that?!? It confuses me and makes me wonder what part of the day I should refer to as "night". It also demotivates me. It makes 4:30pm seem like 9:30pm. It throws off my eating schedule and makes taking a nap feel all too weird, as it feels like I am going to sleep for the night. Then, I think about how we are still headed to the darkest day of the year, so there is more to come...insert sad music and sniffing here...
But, then there are the lights...It's Edinburgh Christmas! The Christmas village invaded the city centre, complete with lights and fair rides. And, you just wouldn't get the full effect of the lights if it was sunny outside! Everyone comes out to the Christmas village. Most the time it is so crowed, you can't even walk. There is ice skating, ferris wheel riding, sausage eating, and more. And, lets not forget to mention the guy that sells roasted chestnuts...so iconic! Though, I must admit, the roasted chestnuts smell a lot better than they taste.
I guess there are pros and cons to every season. And, when the cons become too much, I turn on all the lights in the house and act like I am laying on a beach in California!!!
Today Ian and I celebrated Thanksgiving for a second time this year. It wasn't so much a celebration, as a longing for that wonderful meal! When we celebrated Thanksgiving for the first time (you know, back when the rest of you did), we made a bunch of food, but we had a bunch of friends over as well. Because of this, there were no leftovers. And no leftovers meant we were both left with a craving for the leftovers. So, with my day off, I put together our second Thanksgiving of 2008. It was great, complete with turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole and pumpkin pie. I am beginning to think that Thanksgiving NEEDS to happen well more than once a year! As for those leftovers, I have plans. Not only are they going to make great lunches for Ian, I have visions of turkey soup in my head! Let's just hope I'm not over the turkey come Christmas!
You know when you are growing up how you always dream of hitting the slopes...indoors! Yeah, me either! But, I think little children in Scotland thought that, judging by my co-workers. Today all the employees from my store went on an adventure; we went indoor snowboarding. To be honest, even though I was excited, I was nervous too. I haven't been snowboarding in a year and was afraid that I had somehow forgot how to. Thankfully I discovered I hadn't and never fell once...not that this was a challenge! Having never been to an indoor ski slope, I didn't know what to expect. The hill was quite small. It had a tow rope of sorts to get you to the top. This tow rope proved to be my nemesis. I fell off it. At this point you may be asking yourself, "how do you fall off a tow rope?" I don't know, but I managed to do it! So the girl that has mad snowboarding skills how horrible tow rope skills! And in case you wanted to know about the snowboarding conditions, the room is kept quite cold, but there isn't a breeze. The snow is good snow (not too icy or powdery). Now, putting my feet in rented boots, that was gross! The laces were wet when I got the boots and by the time I got them on, my hands stunk...think of all the germs that were on my hands! GROSS!
Now about hanging out with co-workers. I'm not going to lie, at times it can be hard to hang out with co-workers outside of work. All the sudden you aren't in the safety of your workplace, wearing your work stuff and talking about work. What do you talk about? How much of your life do you divulge? There's only so much small talk that can be done before you start acting like yourself and becoming all buddy-buddy with your co-worker. On a side note, pick and choose who you will become buddy-buddy with, as all co-workers are not friend-type of material! The funny part was that on the way home from the trip, all the girls ended up in the back of the mini-bus (these "mini-buses" are quite popular in Scotland; makes me laugh) being girls...talking about our men, babies (other people's, since non of us have our own) and celebrities. I guess wherever you go, girls will always be girls!
Last night, I decided to go to bed early in an attempt to start my week off right. I fell asleep fast, which is unusual for me. Exactly an hour and fifty minutes after hitting the pillow, I woke up mid-nightmare. You ready for this? I dreamt that I stepped in dog poo! I HATE dog poo! I actually woke up with my heart pounding and covered in sweat. This was at 10:50pm. In case you can't do the math, that means I went to bed at 9pm. After calming down, I was hoping to go right back to sleep. Well that sleep didn't come until much later! The last time I looked at the clock was at 3:23am...and I had to get up at 4:30am! It was quite the long, stressful, sleepless night for me. All in all, I clocked about three hours sleep last night. I think the going to bed early thing backfired on me. I think my body actually thought I was taking a nap or something. That's the last time I try to do something "grown up" and get the right amount of sleep!
From time to time, I run into cultural differences that I just can't seem to grasp. One is the acceptance of calling in sick to work for almost anything. People had told me how you can go to the doctor and get a sick note for anything. They will even lie for you. Doctors don't really seem to care. Well, after 14 months of never once calling into work sick (yet showing up numerous times and spreading my sickness to everyone I work with!), I finally had to do it. Two weeks ago, I woke up so sick and couldn't keep my head out of the toilet. At first, I was hoping to pull it together to get to work, but after realizing I couldn't even stand up, I resigned to the fact that I couldn't work and called in sick. Over here in Scotland, there is a law that you have to be symptom free for 48 hours before you head back to work, so that meant I had to miss the next two days of work as well. On the second day, I went to the doctor. Though I was no longer "with symptom", I was still not eating or feeling well. The doctor did some testing and told me I should take a few more days off work. A few more days?!? What am I supposed to do around the house for a few more days? Needless to say, I told a little lie to my manager (saying I was fine) and was back at work the next day.
Now fast forward two weeks. All week my ear has been bothering me. Ear infections are a common thing for me, but I can usually ride them out without a visit to the doctor (I really do seem to have an aversion to doctors). But, on Wednesday night, the pain was unbearable and kept me up most of the night. Finally, I crawled out of bed at 4:15am to go to work...not feeling my best. On the way out the door, I woke Ian up and asked him to make a doctor's appointment for me for that afternoon after I got off work. When I went to the doctor, she confirmed what I suspected, I had a bad ear infection. After writing me a prescription, she told me I should probably take the next few days off work to recover. A few days off work?!? It's an ear infection! You have got to be kidding me. Needless to say, despite the doctor's orders, I am still going to work, ear infection and all.
When you are from a country that prides itself on work ethic, that provides its employees with 2 weeks vacation a year, and a sick week, it is a hard transition to move to a country that requires employers to give at least 5 weeks vacation a year, plus 2 weeks sick time (at my work, you get an additional week for every year you work, maxing out at 6 weeks sick time). People call in sick to work all the time and don't really care. If we ask for a sick note, they are easily attainable. It is obvious that there are flaws in both ways of thinking (too much work, and then not really caring), but there has to be a middle ground somewhere. Now, it is just finding that middle ground!
This weekend we went on an adventure to the north of Scotland and it turned out to be more of an adventure than we could have imagined! Saturday morning we loaded up our rental car and headed north to pick up Becky. We didn't have much of an agenda, just to get Becky to a distillery and see more of Scotland. Out navigation seemed intent on taking us on the most obscure roads out there. Not long into our journey, we discovered just how much it had snowed in the past 24 hours. The roads were covered...at this point it was the slushy/icy kind, that stresses everyone out when driving. No one was really on the road, but we saw a police vehicle coming toward us. Both of us stopped to chat. The police officer reassured us that not long up the road "things will get better". He also told us that "this was nothing", then informed us that he was thinking about wearing a speedo to work that day. We all got a laugh out of that one. The road did get better, but then we turned on to a one lane (not one lane each way, but one lane) road covered in snow. Once we managed to work our way back to the highway, we were much excited.
Due to all the snow on the roads, we missed the tour at the distillery by 5 minutes...we even called, but they said they wouldn't wait. The funny thing about this was that there were only two people on the tour! Even though we knew we were going to miss the tour, we headed to the distillery. It looked like beautiful, quaint place. The workers were really friendly and we took some great photos outside this place, in the countryside.
Once we headed out from the distillery, it was starting to get dark. A worker at the distillery told us a short cut to Inverness, and it seemed that the navigation was telling us the same way to go. As soon as we turned on to the shortcut road, we discovered it was unlike any road we had ever been on...in our lives! It was covered in about six inches of snow. Thankfully, it was powder so we were able to just plow through it in our little car. We wanted to get out and look at the scenery, but had to wait until we got to the top of a hill and could push our car to start again if we had to. Eventually, we ran into a closed road and had to abandon the short cut...which may have been a good idea!
Saturday night in Inverness, we got some dinner at a local pub, checked out the castle (not so impressive compared to Edinburgh) and saw all the crazy "scene girls" out in next to nothing in the freezing temperatures. We stayed in a bed and breakfast, which was a first to me. Breakfast was at 8am, which seemed early, but it was definitely worth rolling out of bed for. The lady was super friendly and made us all a traditional Scottish breakfast that was more than any of us could handle...and held us over to dinner!
Sunday afternoon we hit up Sterling, which really is only 50 miles from Edinburgh. There is a lot of Scottish history that has happened in Sterling. The highlight of Sterling was the William Wallace monument. It was on top of a hill, then you could climb 200 and something (it's the little details I never remember!) to the top for a fantastic view of the whole valley. None of us could believe how windy and freezing it was at the top of the monument. Needless to say, we didn't stay up there long! The stairs were a tight spiral staircase and we had to take breaks because we actually would get dizzy on them!
All in all, it was a great weekend. We had some great and extremely memorable times. And it really was wonderful to experience more of Scotland. I now can't wait until our next Scottish adventure!
Someone's got a case of the Friday's...and it's me! Seriously, today was such a good day and nothing could damper my spirits. It was quite the eventful day today as well. We got our first snow of the season, which to me means that it is officially winter. The funny part is, I think I have actually adapted to the cold!?! I know, what's up with that?!? But, it is cold enough to snow (30 degrees to be exact) and even though I thought it was chilly, I wasn't bundled up like an eskimo and still felt fine. I never thought I would see the day when I actually adapted to the cold weather!
Today a great author (my opinion) who wrote some infamous books about a boy with a lightning bolt scar on his head came in not one, but two times. And to cap it all off, she was in in two different outfits, both times very smartly dressed. The first time, she was in writing. Whenever she is writing, she always tries to be inconspicuous, usually by sitting huddled in a corner and always covering up her writing. But, I can understand, being how famous her writing is.
Lastly, I would like to "entertain" you with some of the happenings from my day:
* I woke up at 4:30am...and drank a red bull (sugar free of course) on my way to work, at 5:15am. * I started drinking coffee at work at around 7:15am (A girl can never be too caffeinated, right?!?) * It snowed. All work stopped and we all just stared in awe at the wonder that is snow. * I sat down and discussed my future with my manager...I came up with some crazy ideas, but what do you expect from a person like me when you say "Let's discuss your future"? * I came home from work and took a three hour nap (obviously all that caffeine at work didn't affect me too much)...bad move on my part as I will now be up half the night! * It is now 9pm and the ever so unorganized Ian and Jessica are finally making dinner...it's going to be good. I have combined all the random items in our refrigerator to create a feast. (Cut up baked potatoes, with onion, hamburger meat and cheddar cheese.) Seriously, I am looking forward to it!
I knew I shouldn't. I had held out for this long, why should I do it now? But with a little convincing from a sales guy, I had done it...I bought a haggis! With a friend visiting, it seemed the perfect time to try it. Ian, Becky and I could all try it at the same time. Plus, the guy at the store said there was noting gross in it (yet should I trust someone saying this about something enclosed in pig intestines?). So, we brought it home and cooked it up for dinner. The actual cooking of it was quite easy - wrap in foil and cook in a pan with a little water until "piping" hot. It was after the haggis was cooked that things started to go wrong. As soon as I sliced it open, the contents popped out (as you will see in the picture). It had to be one the of the grossest things I have seen in my life. Then, taking the contents out of the pig intestines, Becky keeps commenting on all the infections and such that are found in intestines. By the time we got our dinner on the table, I was thoroughly grossed out. Honestly, at this point, I wasn't even sure if I would eat it. But, then when both Ian and Becky tried it and seemed to not have adverse reactions...I dug in. Even though I only took a small bite, it was enough to last a lifetime. It had to be the grossest taste I have ever had....it reminded me of bad meat. It was nasty. And to top it all off, I woke up completely sick the next morning. Though I am sure it was a coincidence, I still will never get close to haggis again in my life!
Our trip to Dublin got off to an early start. With three hours of sleep under my belt, we headed for the airport. I was hoping to catch some z’s on the plane, but soon learned that wasn’t going to be possible as our trip was only 40 minutes long! Once we arrived in Dublin, the passport control people didn’t seem so keen on Ian and Jessica. Maybe it was because we were American, but we were certainly getting questioned a lot (unlike everyone around us) before they decided to allow us into the country. It was kind of funny. Once we got into town we dropped our luggage at our hotel (which was much nicer than I expected) and headed out. We spent the better part of the day wondering around and getting our bearings. Then we headed back to the hotel for a much needed nap. After the nap, we headed out to dinner, where I managed to fall flat on my butt in the middle of the restaurant…it was great! After dinner we hit up the Temple City Bar, which I think is supposed to be famous for something…I am good with my history! It was full of people, most of which seemed to be tourists. The next day we went and visited the famous church in town. Some of the ruins at the church date back to the 1200’s. After the church we went over to the Guinness Storehouse…the home of Guinness. There we took a tour and learned about how beer is made. The highlights were this crazy waterfall in the middle of the building and the view of the city from the top of the building. That night we went to the movies and saw Quantum of Solace. It was probably the biggest and nicest theatre I have been in (at least in a while). At the beginning of the movie, there was an advertisement to visit Scotland…I thought this was funny. The advertisement made it seem a lot more exciting than it really is! Once the movie was over, we had the privilege of making the trek back to our hotel in the pouring rain complete with strong winds. Thankfully we were both in good moods and the walk didn’t spoil that. This morning, we headed out to the large park in town, where we rented a tandem bike to ride around. The bike rental guy said the park is three times larger than Central Park in New York, so I am guessing it is a pretty large park! Ian and I got off to a rough start on the tandem bike, but soon became pros at riding together. Apparently I enjoyed the ride better than Ian because when I suggested we buy a tandem bike, he quickly responded “no”! After the bike ride, we strolled around town a while before heading to the airport. All in all, it was a good trip. I am sure the people of Dublin wouldn’t like to hear this, but I think their city is a lot like Edinburgh!
They say never judge a book by its cover, but we all know everyone does. When you look at someone, how much can you really tell about them? People have said some interesting things about my appearance over the years, but the one I got today topped the cake. A guy came into my store today (a Scotsman, not an American) and declared that I look like a republican and he is pretty sure I voted McCain. I asked him what gave it away, and he said it was my hair. WHAT?!? Who knew hair could be republican or democrat? I have had some rather bazaar things said about me over the years, but this one takes the cake...or at least stands in first place next to me not looking married!
So, what do I look like to you? Do I look like a married, 27 year-old, barista that votes republican? Or perhaps a girl that loves her crock pot (can anyone say, "mmmm, yummy stew!)? Tell me, what exactly does my "cover" say about me?
Where have all the republicans gone? When I woke up this morning, I woke up to an America that is controlled by Democrats. Yesterday in the election, the Democrats not only took the Presidency, but the House and Senate as well. As I read over Obama's victory speech from last night, I found some irony in him talking about the long lines and people out fighting to vote (insinuating it was all for him), as McCain stood strong during election day and took home 47% of the popular vote. Then, I tried to imagine what the next four years are going to be like, and honestly, I don't know. With Obama always talking about "change" and "hope", but never quite telling us what that is, I don't know what to expect. Yet apparently for 52% of you out there, you don't even need to know what this "change" and "hope" is, just that it is going to happen. I really do "hope" (see, I have the "hope" too!) that Obama surprises me and leads America in a direction it needs to go; steers us out of debt, controls our immigration and gives us a leader to be proud of. Its time for America to focus on America and making our country a truly wonderful place. Here's to hoping!
Whenever I am in a taxi by myself, I am always confused as to if I am supposed to carry on a conversation with the driver or not. Sometimes they start one (generally about politics or the vacation they had to the States...though there was the time the driver talked to me about some swingers (the married kind, not the dancers) and that was just weird...that story is pretty much worthy of its own blog!), but lots of times it just ends up awkward. I always just want to sit there and veg, but it feels like I am riding in the car with someone and NEED to talk to them. Then I wonder, is it rude to just put in my headphones? Or chat on the phone? I wish there was some sort of taxi edicate list somewhere so I knew how to respond! I also wish they would just play the radio to diffuse the situation altogether, but that would be way too easy!
The pride that American's have for their country really does not seem to be matched anywhere else. This came up a lot during the olympics and I have discovered that other people did not grow up saying a pledge of allegiance every morning, nor do they put their hand over their hearts and stand for the national anthem to be played at sporting games. This pride comes up a lot in my conversations with my coworkers. Here is a conversation from the other day:
AC (Anonymous Coworker): Jessica, can you change the daily offerings board in the morning?
Jessica: If I remember, and feel like it, I will. (Oh yeah, I am still the same sarcastic person I was before I moved over here...but I think it is much more accepted over here!)
AC: If not for me, then do it for America.
Jessica: Well since you put it that way, I will definitely do it. I don't want to let my country down!
AC: I knew you had enough pride to not let your country down.
Seriously people, conversations like this happen on an almost daily basis, about everything! Though, I would like to give you a little warning on how this pride works against you. When Americans travel abroad, they like to point out everything that is different than America in a derogatory way. This is not good! Even though I am a prideful American, I am protectful of Scotland and hate it when people do this. So the next time you travel abroad, don't say aloud the comments you are thinking of America being better than the place you are in...this will keep you from getting spit on in the streets, or yelled at by a fellow American!
A Blind Person: I was standing at my bus stop the other night, waiting for the bus after work, when the girl next to me stepped forward toward the bus, right into a blind lady walking down the sidewalk. The blind lady apologized, spanked her dog and told the dog to pay more attention. The sad part was, it wasn't even the dog's fault! The girl (who is actually in her 20's, so I don't know why I am referring to her as a girl), stepped in between the dog and blind lady, making it her fault and didn't even apologize. The blind lady can't even see...so why should she be apologizing?
The Police: The police showed up at my door the other night...immediately, my guilty conscience got nervous. There is a little way that Ian and I are "sticking it to the man" and I thought the police were here to "get" us. As it turns out, they were just passing out fliers about neighborhood watch. And my mom assured me that I was flattering myself thinking the police were coming to get me!
Making Mistakes: I know it may come as a surprise to many of you, but I am not a perfect person and I make mistakes. In my work, I really do strive for perfection and have even been told I need to be easier on others and not expect everyone to be perfect. Anyway, I made a mistake at work this week, locking myself out of the safe. It isn't the worst that could happen, but I was still worried what the ramifications would be. Thankfully, all I got was a talking to and told to be more careful in the future...now it is back to perfection (at least until my next mistake!)
One of the many reasons I love Edinburgh is the moon. On the nights when it is actually not raining and we can see the moon, it always seems to be spectacular. Something about it always seems like it needs to be in a creepy movie. But, it seems like we are closer to this creepy moon than we were in California and it always seems so clear. Seriously, if I look hard enough, I actually see the ant people living on the moon!
Now that winter is headed our way, we are seeing a lot more of the moon. Gone are those long summer (it is just a name, not an indication of warm weather) days when the sun was up at 3am, and not in bed until 10:30. I loved those days! The extra sun added a little bounce into my step! Getting up at 4:30 no longer seemed early, as the sun was already out. Now, the sun doesn't begin making it's appearance until 7:30, and at the worst of it, we won't be seeing it until 9 or 10! It's funny how sunlight becomes an indication of what I should be doing with my time. I am thinking of setting up a fake sun in my house to keep me being productive! Okay, so not really! Well my friend (the sun, that is), I will miss you when you are gone, but I know you will return with all your glory come spring! And as for your enemy (the moon), I will be seeing more of that creepy, perfect looking thing as winter moves on.
This weekend I took a crash course lesson in voting outside the country. Armed with my computer and the knowledge that I NEED to vote in the upcoming election, I weaved my way through a plethora of information to figure out how to vote outside the country. I discovered it is much like voting absentee in the states. Did you know that most absentee ballots are submitted by people living outside the US? It makes me wonder just how many of "us" there are...it also makes me wonder why we choose to live in a country where we cannot vote, yet still want to vote in the country of our birth (or citizenship). I know my answer, I still plan on living back there someday, but it is still ironic when you think about it. The thing about voting absentee is that they don't even count the ballots until after the election is over. It makes me feel like my vote doesn't even count...the decision is made, THEN they count in my vote. Woohoo! Though the decision will still be made basically without my vote, I still find it my duty, or more, my privilege, to to cast my vote in the upcoming election.
I've heard it said that you dream about things you think about in your subconscious. But, what about things in your dreams happening in real life? How do you explain that? On Friday night, I was dreaming that I was drinking and it went down the wrong pipe. I woke up choking, as if it really happened. What explains that? I have had a similar experience before. It is as if my dream became a reality. Most of the time, I only remember glimpses of my dreams, but sometimes I remember them vividly, almost as if I lived the experience. I have gone shopping with friends, out to eat, to visit people and more. Most of the time, my dreams cause all parts of my life to intersect...family, friends, work mates and more are all together at one place. Distance does not cause a problem. Everyone can be together. Come to think about it, dreams are usually quite fantastic because so much of my life comes together in one place (in ways it can't when I am awake), and yet I still don't have control of them...so they are unpredictable. I am thinking tonight I am going to dream about getting together with all my favorite people at The Griddle Cafe for breakfast...here's to making that a reality!
Winter seems to have arrived in Edinburgh and so have my wellies! As the weather gets colder outside, and the streets get wetter, I decided it would be wise to invest in a pair of wellies. That way I can leave my shoes at work and wear these back and forth between work and home and my feet will stay nice and dry! Last year, I tried doing this with my Uggs a couple times, but soon realized those are no where near to being waterproof!
Right now, the weather over here is about 45-50 degrees. People over here call this autumn, I call this the worst winter LA has ever seen! I remember my boss in LA making fun of me for wearing scarves as an accessory, as he thought they weren't really necessary. At the time, I thought they were necessary. After living in Edinburgh, I now understand the true necessity of a scarf! The wind over here can push the cold air thru gaps that are usually undetectable in clothing. Layering has taken on a new meaning to me! Just this morning, standing at the bus stop, I was thinking about how it will soon be time again for me to wear double layers on my legs. I already have begun layering up top...jackets over sweaters, over shirts. Believe it or not, my work doesn't actually have any heating. In fact, in the cafe area itself, we actually run the air conditioners year round. But, get off the shop floor (away from all the coffee machines and panini grills) and it becomes arctic temperatures! Thankfully Starbucks has some "stylish" fleeces for us to wear...this is actually because they expect us to go out sampling in the arctic temperatures! The funny thing about the fleeces is they only provide them in an XL and everyone at my store, including the guys, is quite small.
All I really want to say is, while you LAers (and some of you outside LA) are enjoying your 90 degree weather, still frolicking around in your tank tops and heading off to the beach, think of your friend Jessica who is wearing three layers too many and fondly thinking of office space heaters!
Taking advantage of the beautiful day (by beautiful, I mean sunny, windy and 50 degrees out!), Ian and I decided to hike Arthur's Seat. It isn't exactly a grueling hike, but it provided us with spectacular views of the city we call home. Oddly enough, when I was up there, I thought for just a split second that I was in San Luis Obispo. Apparently my brain was playing tricks on me! Of course, after the hike, we rewarded ourselves with ice cream cones from an ice cream truck in the parking lot! I still can't decide which is better, the ice cream or the view from Arthur's Seat! Here are some of the pictures from our hike:
Now, I understand everyone does it, but what I don't understand is why everyone has to do it at their local Starbucks! Today two of our four public toilets got blocked due to excessive amounts of poop. (On a side note, in case you are wondering, I didn't unblock them, but left a note for the supervisor in the morning...aren't I so nice?!? Also, I thought about posting a picture with this post, but thought it might disturb most of you to your very core!) This got me thinking...why exactly do people do their business at Starbucks so much? Is it due to coffee acting as a laxative, clean toilets, free toilet paper, or for the sheer satisfaction of pissing the baristas off? Yesterday a guy came in right before we closed, walked straight to the bathroom and spent about 15 minutes in there. On his way out (mind you, he wasn't even a customer), I decided to stare him down. Finally, feeling extremely uncomfortable, he said "thanks" and quickly walked out the door.
Call me weird, but I am one that can only do my business in the comfort of my own home. And, after talking to various people, it seems about 50% of you are just like me. Now, I just need to get into the brain of the other 50% of you and figure out exactly why and how you can poop anywhere. Also, when you do poop anywhere, why you have to do it at your local Starbucks!
Yesterday was International Talk Like a Pirate Day, only the second best day of the year (with Christmas being the first, of course!)! Being the huge pirate fan that I am (or maybe just a fan of all things crazy) I knew I had to celebrate. And to make things even better, I was working which meant I could more easily spread the pirating cheer! The first coworker that got to work though I was making the whole thing up. Then the second one came in and was excited that I knew about it too! Greatness! I tried telling some of the early morning customers about it, but they mostly looked at me like I was crazy. Then, one of our "younger" regulars came in and not only had he actually heard of it, but he was excited too. By the end of the day, I had almost all of my coworkers talking like a pirate, though they made fun of my version of talking like a pirate, but most of the customers thought we were crazy. All in all, it was a good day. It is nice to have some random thing to celebrate and some random reason to put a smile not only on my own face, but on the faces of others. So, mark your calendar for September 19, 2009...when International Talk Like a Pirate Day will return again! I expect you all to celebrate next year!
I just finished up six days with my parents visiting Ian and I in Edinburgh. They got to see where I live and how I live. They also got to experience the "wonderful" weather in Edinburgh. It was rainy and cold most of the time while they were here, though they did get one nice day. While my parents were here, Ian and I took advantage of getting to better know the city we live in...we figure if we do this every time people come to visit, we will eventually see all the sites/tourist attractions in the city. This time we hit up the castle (for a second time this year), walked the Royal Mile, took a reformation tour, went to the Edinburgh Zoo and got in some shopping. The zoo was quite the experience for my mom and I. It was perhaps the wettest day in Edinburgh yet. It was pouring down rain the whole time and about 50 degrees out. But, we braved the weather and enjoyed ourselves. The zoo does an "optional" penguin parade (meaning the penguins aren't forced out of their enclosure to participate). At our parade, there were only two participants. It was totally cute. They walk right in front of you...in fact, they have us block the walkway so the penguins can't escape. I would go back to the zoo again just to see the penguin parade again. The parents should be touching down in San Francisco about now. Hopefully they enjoyed their trip and Riley enjoys her present from Edinburgh! Oh, and click here if you want to see more pictures from my parents trip.
This evening, Ian and I experienced an explosion in our house...don't worry, I lived to blog about it! We hooked up one of our American DVD players in our room, so we could watch movies. About 15 minutes into the excursion, the larger electricity flow proved too much for our dear old friend and it exploded. Unfortunately, I was not there to see this happen, but I did see the aftermath. It was smelly and smoking all over the place. Quickly, we unplugged it. Then, I realize my very important Friends DVD was inside the player! We tried to pry open the player to no avail. So, I went in the old fashioned way...one screw at a time. At this point, the DVD player was still smoking and pretty stinky, so I had to cover my nose. Finally, I rescued my DVD from a most certain death by asphyxiation. As for the DVD player, it didn't make it through the explosion. But, I still have some fond memories of my dear friend! Sniff, sniff...
One year ago today, I got off a plane and began a "new" life in my new home. At that point in time, I had no clue what to expect. Even now, it is hard to say how the reality has lived up to my expectations. Honestly, I don't think I expected much. As far as living goes, we have adapted quite well...though this doesn't mean that from time to time I don't pine after having a car! Having a job has been key. I have been able to network with so many people this way, and even make a couple friends. And, it has worked out nicely for me to keep my Foursquare ties. This has given me the joy of feeling like I am working for a purpose (not that serving coffee isn't a purpose...ha, ha), and allowed me to continue to work with a very neat group of people in the states. My diet has changed, as there are different foods available here and we don't have a barbecue (Ian's favorite way of cooking). Also, we eat at home quite often, as it is very expensive to go out to eat. In fact, most things are quite expensive here. This has caused my consumerism to take a nosedive. Though I do think this is a good thing, I still very much miss the shopping and eating out! Our days off look nothing like they did in the states. If the weather is nice, we will try to get outside, otherwise we stick to indoor activities. Life in general seems to be a slower pace over here.
The hardest part of living in another country really has been the relationship aspect. Though I don't talk to my friends as much as I did when I first left, I still hold them near and dear to my heart. It is hard to not be able to pop out for coffee or lunch with my friends. It is hard to not be able to jump in my car and be home with my family whenever I feel like it. But, this isn't a forever experience and because of that, it makes it bearable. Also, after a year, I am finally making a couple good friends. Good friends are hard to come by and it takes time to make them, but it is happening.
Ian and I talked about making a list of all the places we want to see before we move back to the states. That list really is long. Even with five weeks holiday a year, there is a lot to see. We want to go to Dublin, Amsterdam, Disneyland Paris, back to Germany, skiing somewhere, over to visit some friends in New Zealand (yes, I know this is closer to the states than Scotland) and more. It will happen. And, these are adventures we will remember for a lifetime.
Planes: Ian and I booked our tickets home for Christmas. I couldn't be more excited about this. After 13 months, I will once again be back at home, see my cute nephew and play with my dog! We will be home from December 23 - January 9. I am looking forward to some time with friends and family, shopping, snowboarding, eating some great food and more! Politics: Sarah Palin. This woman has just changed the face of politics. Not just politics, but the face of the country. Hillary took our country to a certain extreme and now Sarah has carried the torch on. They have both shown us that women are capable of everything men are in our country. They have shown us it is acceptable to be a working mom (in case you didn't know Sarah's youngest is 4 1/2 months old). They have shown us that a woman's opinion is valued. Sarah may be young and inexperienced in politics, but so is Obama. She brings some much needed life to the Republican ticket. She is young, a mother, a believer in pro-life and more. I look forward to seeing and hearing more about Sarah Palin in the future.
Wedgies: I was at the gym today and watched this lady pick her wedgie in the middle of the gym! She didn't even look around to see if anyone was watching, she just dug in. This got me thinking, is this woman tacky or just doesn't care what anyone else thinks? The obvious choice would be tacky, but maybe she is so secure in herself that she can pick a wedgie in public and not care what others would think. I do think I admire her for this, but I still believe this is a very tacky act and you won't see me picking a wedgie in public anytime soon!
I look around at all the responsibility and problems that are now mine in life and have to wonder...when did I grow up? And, did anyone ask me if I really wanted to? I remember being 15 and thinking that I couldn't wait until I was 18 so I could do whatever I wanted and make all my own decisions. Well, with those decisions come a lot more responsibility. There is the financial freedom, which is really the privilege of being able to pay for everything yourself! Last week, there was a plumbing leak in our house in Pasadena which caused a 3x5 foot section of the roof in the garage to fall down. All the sudden, the freedom wasn't looking so nice! I am not supposed to be dealing with problems like this, I am just a kid! No longer can me and my friends hang out together all summer, we have work. Then, when we are sick, it is so much harder to call in sick to work than it ever was to school! There are people counting on me showing up and if I don't, someone else has to pick up my slack. Of course, now I can stay out as late as I want and do really whatever I want. That isn't so cool anymore. I can't sleep all day...there is laundry to be done, errands to run and more. Though I must admit, that doesn't mean I don't take advantage of this from time to time! Especially now during the festival; it seems like every weekend this month, Ian and I aren't getting home until at least 2am. But back to the grown up problems. No longer can I talk to my friends whenever I want. Work, kids and more get in the way. Plus, I don't think Chandra would answer the phone anymore if I called at 3am! Seriously, I remember calling her on a fairly frequent basis in the middle of the night. That was the life, the life before responsibility. But, I look around today, the sun is shining, I have a delicious dinner cooking, the laundry is almost done and I realize, life is still good, I just have more to think about!
Generally I am an antsy person. I like to be out of the house and feeling like I am doing something with my day. I like to get out, go on walks, ride my bike, go shopping, hang out with friends and more. It is amazing how much that changes when it is constantly raining outside and I have to wait for the bus in the rain if I want to go anywhere. All the sudden, I only will leave if it is extremely necessary. I find so many more things to do around the house...even the cleaning that I usually try to avoid. When I look outside and it is raining buckets, suddenly going for walks and anything that involves being outdoors isn't as appealing. Obviously, if I stayed inside every day, I would go insane. And there are those necessary things that do get me out of the house on most days. But I must say, today my house is looking very clean and all the laundry is done!
There are certain things that I run into from time to time that really just gross me out. This first one, I run into at the gym all the time. This is guys spitting loogies in the drinking fountain. They just sit there on the drain for everyone to stare at...grossness! I don't understand how anyone can find this acceptable. Speaking of spitting, I have even seen people spit on the floor of the bus! People can really lack manners sometimes!
Another yuck factor is when using a public toilet, seeing people leave without washing their hands! Not only are you in public, so you should do it to not gross others out, but also, since you are using a public toilet, there are many more germs you are coming into contact with. Why NOT wash your hands?
Lastly, and this is an odd one, on Saturday a lady at my work took her beverage, which was in a mug, into the bathroom. She ended up spilling it and I had to clean it up. But, my question is, why would you ever take your drink into the bathroom with you?!? Especially at my work...the bathrooms are about 3 feet wide. You can barely move in them and the only place to set the cup would be on the back of the toilet or on the floor. Grossness!
Every single one of us needs to think about our daily actions. We need to think of the yuck factor we are causing. And, if there is a yuck factor in there, it should be stopped! Or at least, only allow your nasty habits out in the comfort of your own home!
Yesterday, Ian and I had the opportunity of going to the Edinburgh Military Tattoo show. This takes place at the Edinburgh Castle. They set up a grandstand for people to sit in. We got in this huge line to get into the stadium. Standing in the line, it seemed that it would be virtually impossible for all these people to get into the stadium. Well, they did it! There was literally NO wiggle room in the stadium. We were sitting shoulder to shoulder, knee to back. It was crazy. BUT, this packing really helped when it started pouring rain on us. All the people acted as a protective barrier against the rain!
The show itself was great. Many different bands from around the world performed. Even a band from Missouri performed, though I must say, they were probably the low point of the evening (which does sort of reflect bad on the homeland). The high points were a marching group of girls from New Zealand, some people that skied (yes, skied) through the stadium holding huge flames and a group of guys performing with bayonets...they were awesome. One odd thing was toward the end of the night, all the bands came out and performed the national anthem. The national anthem is the song that goes like this...My country tis of thee; sweet land of liberty...well, thanks to google, I found out that song (known as "America") is written to the tune of the British national anthem, God Save the Queen. Kind of funny. In my opinion, this is the funniest way ever to get back at Britain...go America!
By the end of the show, the skies had opened up and it became a downpour. And, since it took about a half an hour to exit the stadium, we were sufficiently soaked by the time we got out. And of course, as luck would have it, no taxis were available. But, we made it safely home via the night bus. Even though we were in a bad storm, I would go see the show again...next time though, I would bring something to cover my lap!
August is an interesting month for Edinburgh. It is a month where the population of the city more than doubles as hundreds of thousands of people flock into the city to take part in the festival. In reality, there are many a festivals going on simultaneously. There is the Fringe Festival (comedy), Edinburgh International Festival (theatre/arts), Tattoo (military), and I am sure more that I am failing to mention. The chaos that makes up the city right now reminds me of Pasadena leading up to and during the Rose Parade. Things become overcrowded, litter is everywhere, alcohol is free-flowing (you can wonder the streets drinking here), street performers are a dime a dozen and the entertainment is nonstop!
On Friday night, Ian and I took advantage of the festival and went to a comedy show. It was quite funny. And I have to admit, the best part was when the guy was making fun of Americans; though Ian says it was so funny because we are American, but whatever! Then on Saturday, we wondered around in the chaos that is known as the Royal Mile. You can barely walk, the crowd is so thick. Then, every two feet people are thrusting papers in your face advertising a show. And you gotta look down every once in a while to make sure the people with strollers don't ram you! Though I was a little disgusted with the amount of litter everywhere, I was entertained by the crazily dressed people and tourists galore. It is going to be an interesting month for us here in Edinburgh!
I read an interesting article in the newspaper today about living dangerously. The gist of the article is that in life we allow our our unrealistic fears to control us. And how do we not allow this to happen when all we have to do is turn on the tv or go to a news website and we are inundated with horrible news - accidents, wars, murder, the fear of "the big one" and more. This keeps us from living and experiencing life to the fullest. This got me thinking...I have done so many adventurous things already but, there are a lot of things left that I want to do. And, I definitely don't want to let my fears get in the way of accomplishing these wonderful things. Here are a few I will share with you. Please let me know if you want to participate in any of these activities with me...company always makes things better!
* Skydiving...Laurie, this SO needs to happen! * Get more tattoos * Drive a race car * Be in a movie (I don't even have to talk, just an extra would do) * Go to Australia * Go on a helicopter ride
The bottom line is, I would rather say at the end of my life that I wish I hadn't experienced something rather than saying I wish I had. The path we are on shapes us into who we become. I want to be an adventurous, no holds bar, loving person. I know I am well on my way to being that person...In the mean time, I will continue to live dangerously by not using the cross walk, eating too much ice cream, taking too many transatlantic flights to count, speeding whenever I have the opportunity, holding the cell phone (with all its radiation) right up to my ear, not getting flu shots, not flossing daily and more. Look at me, living life on the edge!
So, a friend of mine invited me (or really, didn't want to face this alone) to body combat at the gym. Both of us went into the class blindly, not knowing what to expect. When we got into the crowded classroom, we discovered we were the only newbies in the class. But, the instructor insured us that we would catch on quickly. And, I figured if this class makes me look as buff as the instructor, then I want to do it!
So off we went, for an hour of horror. There were too many high kicks, squats and lunges to count. And it all happened so quickly. I definitely got a work out. My friend, who will remain nameless to protect the innocent, and I were covered in sweat. I mean seriously, it was nasty. But, having someone sweat it out beside me kept me going. Every time I felt like a dork, she encouraged me. And we kept going. We got through the hour of torture feeling better about ourselves. We even decided to go back next week! Of course, that decision was made before I woke up this morning in more pain than I have been in my entire life! So many muscles ache this morning. Hopefully it will be worth it!
Today I was on the bus when I overheard a conversation between a little girl and her dad. This little girl was talking about how her uncle loves her. And her dad responded to her by saying, "Yeah, he loves you, but only when you aren't annoying him." Instantly, many a thoughts popped up in my head...
Why would a dad say that to his daughter? Who only loves someone when they aren't being annoying? This girl is going to grow up with a warped sense of love!
But that got me thinking, what is love? I looked up the meaning of love...none of the dictionary definitions seemed to truly sum up what love is. Speaking of love in a general sense it's that willing to lay down your life for someone, put up with their smelly feet, make them any meal they want type of feeling. And when you (or shall I say, I) have that feeling for someone, that feeling can't go away just because the person does something annoying, mean, hurtful, bad, etc. When I think of how many people in this world that I love like that, it really isn't that many. There is the husband, the family and a few friends, but when I think about it, it really takes a while to love someone like that. And once you do, I don't think that feeling ever goes away!
I don't have many days where I dwell on missing people. But, the past 24 hours has been one of those times. I miss being able to drive home (to Modesto that is) and go to El Rosal with Chandra and Laurie. I miss my parents coming down and staying with Ian and I every couple weeks. I miss being able to drive up to Josh and Courtney's and hanging with Courtney and Tanner. I miss shopping trips, meals and free movies with my friend Kelly. I miss calling up my Aunt Willa and going over to hang with her. I miss running down the hall and chatting with Katie and Lisa. I miss distracting Julianne all day long. I miss JP bringing us (me and Julianne, that is) my favorite candy pretty much every day. I miss talking to my mom every day on my way home from work.
I do love living in Edinburgh, I really do. But making good friends is not something that happens overnight. And, you can never make a new family! I miss those friends and family. And, it probably doesn't help that Ian is in London for a couple days!
From Where You Are, by Lifehouse So far away from where you are These miles have torn us worlds apart And I miss you Yeah, I miss you So far away from where you are Standing underneath the stars And I wish you were here
I miss the years that were erased I miss the way the sunshine would light up your face I miss all the little things I never thought that they’d mean everything to me Yeah, I miss you And I wish you were here
I feel the beating of your heart I see the shadows of your face Just know that wherever you are Yeah, I miss you And I wish you were here
Have you ever thought about how much we as a society and individuals allow the media to dictate our lives? We allow both good and bad news to affect our moods, our security and our spending. We allow ads, pictures and magazines to help us determine the next cool thing to buy, be it clothes, gadgets or otherwise. We allow songs to speak to us...they help explain good times, bad times and loving times in our lives. We see ourselves or who we want to be in characters on tv and in movies. We enjoy the entertainment of books and reading about lives that aren't ours....
Lately, I have indulged in two forms of media and for very different reasons. The first is the tv show Brothers & Sisters. My friend Chandra introduced this show to me and it has quickly become my favorite tv show...I just can't seem to get enough of it. This is for a few reasons. First, you can see how much this family loves each other and I think all of us deep down want a family that gets together often and loves each other despite our flaws and differences. Also, with so many kids, there is someone on the show that each one of us can relate to in one way or another. After getting all caught up with seasons one and two, I have now decided that I want a big family like the Walkers, so five kids it is! Ian has told me we should wait and see how one goes before we decide on five, but five sure looks fun!
The second is the book, The Last Lecture. If you aren't familiar, this book (which is non-fiction) is by a guy who is dieing and he is giving his last lecture as a professor...this lecture is not just for his students and colleagues, but is something for his children to watch when they are older so they can know what type of guy their father was. This book moved me because it made me have to examine how I am living my life. No one knows when they are going to die and we all need to live our lives in a way that we would be proud of no matter when we go...this means loving to the best of our ability, always giving what matters our everything, forgetting the small stuff and more.
Though I think we need to be careful what type of media we allow into our heads and how much of it we allow, I think it is alright to indulge from time to time...and I definitely think all of you should be indulging in both of the above!
After a six and a half hour train ride, I was more than ready to be in Prague! Also, after reading all I could about Prague, I was more than paranoid about the city! But, it turned out to be more than I expected. This city really is based on a crazy history of fighting for its freedom. We started out taking a walk through Wenceslas Square, where throughout history many rallies have happened; the most recent notable one being in 1989, when the end of communism was declared. We then continued winding our way through the city, stopping to see the astronomical clock do its thing (and see all the disciples make an appearance when the hour strikes), then for a walk over the Charles bridge. It was at the Charles bridge that I saw some paddle boats. Ian agreed to go on one with me. This was the biggest mistake of our lives! First, we got out on the river and there were huge boats in the area where the paddle boats are and this freaked me out. Then, it started to storm and was very windy and we had some trouble fighting the wind to get back in. I started freaking out and was ready to jump overboard, but luckily we were able to navigate our boat back to the dock and got off it as soon as possible! I don't think either Ian or I will be on another paddle boat for a long time! After the paddle boat incident, we decided to head back to our hotel for a break. Only, the weather had other plans for us. We got caught in a downpour. We ran for cover in a phone booth, but the rain was coming down sideways and still getting us, so we ran to a pub where we stayed until the worst part of the storm had passed. That night, we headed out to dinner at a New Orleans style restaurant with live blues music.
The next day, we got up and headed over to the palace in Prague (the largest in the world). It offered some beautiful views of the city. Then we headed over the the Miniature Museum...something that I wanted to hit up. Everything on display, you had to look at through magnifying glasses. My two favorites - camels in the eye of a needle (get it?) and the Lord's Prayer on a hair. Kind of crazy!?! After that, we hit up the Museum of Communism, which told the story of communism in the Czech Republic. We rounded off our 4th of July back at the same restaurant as the night before, where they were having a 4th of July celebration! It made me feel like I was back in the states ad not really far away from home.
On our last day (really, a half day) in Prague, we headed over to a memorial/museum in honor of the men who assassinated Reinhard Heydrich, the guy Hitler put in charge of the Czech Republic. Then, we holed up for a while on the patio of a coffee shop. Now here I am, sitting in the Prague airport waiting to head home...and get back to my plants and laundry!
Hello! I'm Jess, lover of Jesus, my hubby, my kids, coffee and taking pictures. I am married to Ian, my high school sweetheart and partner in crime. We are figuring out this parenting thing on a daily basis. Our teachers are Connor (7), Isla (5) and the baby, Callum. Thanks for stopping by. Feel free to stay a while.