I'm going to be tooting the horn of one of my most adorable friends here today. She is way too busy making things like this...
and like this.....
to toot her own horn. Oh, and making me chocolate goodbye parties that look like this....
She is da' bomb diggity of all bomb diggities! SO it is up to me as her most adorable friend! I dedicate my 200th post to you Canesa!
She is a great party planner! Not only was mine AWESOME she has done a full Candyland theme for her oldest daughter's FIRST birthday! All the way down to a life sized map! Seriously, Canesa post the picture in the comments! Canesa doesn't just do a fruit bowl, no, she makes the WHOLE dang bowl and then bedazzles it and then decorates the fruit with sparkles. Okay, that may be overboard but take my word for it, she knows how to entertain! She also makes it look effortless. I'm the one who puts the bowl on the table and forgets the fruit and then has to lay down from all the hard work!
She just found her magnificent talent in woodworking. I think her husband is a little jealous of her talents because he "grounded" her from making more for awhile. Jealous much Burt? LOL! And her first project was this.....
Made totally from scratch, except for the bedding! She didn't work herself up to it, she started with this HUGE project! I hear she did 28 other little projects for Christmas. I'm sure she built someone a house and is just too humble to say so!
She is my favorite decorator. Not only did she do this room, while her husband was
she also helped me do this room of mine...........
she was also a great consultant on other rooms in my Utah house, while my husband was gone for work. I've missed her much here in Singapore. Funny thing is she was always over at my house helping me decorate that her husband joked that her and I were married. Haha Burt, I'd totally marry her! She redoes a room in her house at least once a month! And it always looks amazing! And not only does she re-do a room but the rest of her house is spotless along with a homemade dinner, I think she is secretly
She-ra princess of power!
Have I mentioned that she is also an athlete? She has trained and ran in a triathlon, all while her 3rd child was a baby. Seriously, she found the time and did it while always looking like a goddess! And while she was training for this triathlon she also did some major biking like miles and miles of biking! I watched her kids because I'm seriously allergic to exercise. Canesa pushed herself and learned to swim during her triathlon training. Just goes to show that you can always learn something new! I love her determination.
But I think her best accomplishment is the 4 beautiful and happy kids that she is raising. And three of those kids are under 4 with one of them being almost 1! She has done this all with 3 kids at home and one a pre-teen. AND she does it with a smile and a hug and she totally loves it! Along with her immaculately kept home and home made dinners that are fantastic.
I sit here crying because I miss her. I miss her silly stories and calling me when she finds a birds nest on her door, I miss just knowing she is a hop, skip and jump away. I miss our wild shoe buying escapades. This post has been hard for me to write but Canesa, I love you. I hope this ends your year with a bang. I'm sorry I didn't get that fruitcake over to you this year. LOL. I'm so proud that you continue to be my friend when I continue to desert you for a silly job or moving across the world.
That is my favorite line from A Christmas Story. Especially now that we are here in Singapore with Asians and we've had the duck here and it actually does come with the head attached! Plus, it reminds me just a little of my American home.
Our first Christmas in Singapore has been celebrated, toys have been played with and broken and before we can get the lights out of the trees our kids have begun the gimmes AGAIN! They're my kids all the way! It's good to want as long as they know they aren't getting everything!
Of course the kids were spoiled and got too much stuff and so did I. I got both Jewelry AND a kindle. I also got one of the cutest Santa's ever to celebrate our first Christmas here.
Not much really seemed different except that we all were wearing shorts and t-shirts instead of warm and fuzzy jammies. The groundskeeper was sweeping the dead leaves which gave a nice background noise, and made my kids sad that he wasn't celebrating like us. Instead of snow gear the kids got swimming gear. Still chuckle over that one. It just feels weird to go swimming in DECEMBER and OUTSIDE! Not that I'm complaining.
The kids played with the Chinese neighbors next door for quite a while after opening presents. My most memorable quote will be the Chinese girl asking me "can I just ask you one question? did all of this cost you a fortune?" Yes, Chloe it did. And I"m a little ashamed of it, but probably do the same thing next year. I always do. The neighbors only get one present, one fairly expensive present but as Chloe told me..."I don't spend all my money, and my pocket change is growing". Maybe she can teach me.
I think it wa a success. NO one said they missed anything or wished we would still be in the States. We all enjoyed the day playing our new family games and eating too much candy. My favorite times are the times we all spend together, reconnecting and learning about eachother. It really was just another Christmas to us no matter where we are in the world. Hope all of yours was wondorous too.
This is me and my LOVE. With his love for me I have acheived things I never thought possible. This picture says so many things. It's a date night with my hubby here in Singapore in December. I look forward to my time alone with Bob. When life gets busy I sometimes forget that I really love his personality and just being with him. It's nice to go out and enjoy eachother and nourish the love that has kept us going for the last 18 years. With our love for eachother we have acheived both PEACE and JOY.
Yesterday I went to a church luncheon with some new found friends, Andrea and Jennifer.That's us on the side, aren't we cute?
Since this was a Christmas type of lunch the talk was about what brings you Joy. There are many things in my life that make me happy and even more things that I like. But things that truly bring me that unadulterated JOY? I had to think about that one. Of course I started thinking about big and grand things like walks on the beach, expensive vacations and the expensive hair and clothes to go along with it. As I continued throughout the night to think my most joyous moments are those that were small or are the little comforts of life. Here are some of the things that bring me Joy.
*Brand new socks on a cold night
*My kids laughing and just goofing off with them
*My husbands mischievous grin
*Finding an old friend
*Making a new friend
*Accepting who you are
*Acquiring a new skill
*Snuggling, especially with the whole family
*Knowing that God created my husband just for me!
*Letting go of past hurts
*Finding something you thought was lost
*Getting lost in a good book or good movie
*Family game time
*Being needed by someone who isn't your child
*Making a difference in someones life
Joy to me are those things that I crave or look forward to. The things I want to create when I am down or need a good old pick me up. Like I said there are many things that make me happy but these are just some of the things that make me really enjoy my life. And this list would not be complete without adding one from the luncheon: Freshly cleaned sheets and cleanly shaved legs. That is very nice!
Yeah, We've only been here a few short weeks but already I'm reaping the benefits. Let's go through that list together shall we?
* Singapore has given me the opportunity to get fresh air while doing my laundry, some days I can even get rained on while moving my laundry around.
* Singapore has taught me what that little R on my drive shaft is for. The majority of parking in Singapore is all back up, rarely do I find a one I can drive into.
* Along that same line, Singapore is given me one heck of a strong neck from always looking back, and once in awhile I move my waist too just for the extra exercise. Maybe I'll lose some inches off my waist?
*My windshield of the car is VERY, VERY clean. This would probably be because I FORGET the blinker is on the right side and not the left side.
* Singapore has given me the chance to update my math skills by learning the metric system. I am slowly and painfully learning the difference between one kilogram and one pound. It's a difference! Who knew?
* Singapore allows me to not stick out as the worst driver in the world because I think all the drivers are bad here. If I ride the dotted line NO ONE honks at me, probably because they were too,
* Singapore has given me a new admiration for crocs. Not the animal one but the shoes. They are everywhere and you can bling them up with cute little buttons or leave them plan. They also have high heel crocs which I may have to try out.
* Singapore has allowed me to become closer to my oldest son. Anytime I want to talk to him I get to text him to come down the million stairs we seem to have so we can have a nice little chat because he is too tired to walk back up the stairs and so he might as well talk to me!
* Singapore taught me that even if the money comes in rainbow colors and varies in size according to the dollar amount it is still real money that my cute husband has earned for me.
* Singapore has shown me that white is beautiful because they all have this gorgeous Carmel colored skin but there are whitening products EVERYWHERE!
* I've realized while in Singapore that all nude statues of women MUST show the nipples in GREAT detail and that going into a place called Talk and Cock is for singing. (okay I didn't go, I just drive by it alot and get a chuckle from it)
* I know that if I ever have another child I don't need to breastfeed because you can buy colostrum at the local cold storage
*I have also learned that babies need spa time too and that it looks more like a Build a Bear workshop with all the little tubs and dryers.
* I've learned to always take an Umbrella and a one dollar coin. The first because it's inevitable that it will rain and the second because you can't get a trolley (cart) without putting in your coin.
* I now know that when someone says "Sure, Sure, you bet!" it means I need to re-explain because they really don't know what I'm talking about.
One of the things that happens when you move is you need to go make new friends. This use to be hard for me many years ago. I've gotten better at it and have gained some really great friends. I guess I've just been lucky to be put in the path of so many awesome people.
The one thing that I think should happen when you meet a new potential friend (P.F.) however is you need to give them notes, something like cliff notes. Like those ones you read in Highschool where you skimmed it looking for the important stuff instead of actually READING the book. Yeah, those ones, I hear they have them available for an audio download now.
These notes would have anything in it that creates the Unique story of you. Not because your story isn't worth reading, because it is, instead it would be just because there is so many years of story to be explained.
This would serve as the background of YOU! All the things that make you who you are! It would have pertinent information like age, hair color (real or fake), favorite foods and activities. Where you've lived, siblings, parents, children, etc., etc., etc. HMMM, I guess it would be very similar to an online dating ad!
Imagine meeting a new P.F. You realize that there are so many things you would love to talk to her about but you also realize that there's some background story that needs to be explained. VOILA! Handy little cliff notes all about YOU! She can read it all at once, take her time or just refer to it whenever you need her to be up to date on a certain story line.
When a problem arises and you go to your new P. F. there is no need to re-explain everything. Just give her chapter and verse of the cliff notes for her reference. She is up to date on your lifetime of woes. Problem with the In-laws but no time to catch up P.F. on all the logistics? Handy dandy P.F. Cliff Notes to the rescue! Have her read and call you back ASAP.
I'm really loving this idea. I really think it could work. What would you put in the cliff notes of your life?
Do you ever feel like you've been typecast. You know where no matter what you do, or say people are always going to think what they want of you? Yeah, that's where I am right now.
I've been typecast as this person who really has no feelings and cares very little of others. I've lived with it for awhile and always thought that I'd change those views. I've become similar to some desperate out of work actress. I thought I could become like Angelina Jolie. If she can change her image as a wild weirdo to a doting charitable mother than it should be easy for me.
How wrong I was.
To some people no matter what you do, what you say, how you behave they will always think the worst of you. They will assume you can't change and haven't changed. Maybe because it is easier for them to hold onto the past.
I really don't know.
I just know that I feel like no matter what I do certain people will always think the worst of me or that I'm putting on an act. Which is very ironic because for the last few years I'm the most genuine ME that I have ever been. I'm comfortable with who I am. I've learned from my past, I love my present and I look forward to the future me. The things I do and say are no longer an act.
What I need to start doing is just not caring as much because being typecast is a little suffocating to me. It hurts when I feel I've conquered the old type and moved on only to be shoved back to that role of mean, selfish and ungiving.
I have no ideas. I just know I hurt and I"m tired of it. If I quit caring does that not essentially change who I am? Maybe it is time to change that a part of me, that part that is a people pleaser, the one that looks for the applause. Maybe that's my lesson here and I haven't learned it.
I'm not a person that goes to church every Sunday or even on special Holidays. I haven't actually been to church in years. (yes mom, I know I should visit God's house more than I visit your house). However, I am a very spiritual person. I believe in a God, whether it be Catholic, Mormon, Hindu, Muslim or any other God out there. You see God's presence everywhere on this earth and my life goes so much smoother when I just let God lead the way. He knows what he's doing even if I don't agree with it at the time.
So, One of my most favorite things since first coming to Singapore is how they incorporate all these different religions into daily life. It doesn't matter what religion you are or what God you believe in just as long as you believe. Some of the places of worship are so grand and beautiful, I need to go explore some of them more. Just walking or driving by some of them can have you feeling the presence of God.
This last week as I was driving I saw a regular 3 lane road become a one way road because people were parking on the road to go and pray. No one seemed bothered by traffic being so slow or that there were so many cars double parked. It is just a common way of life here. To me it was uplifting. I need to remember to take time and pray and thank God no matter where I am during the day. Who says God is only open on Sundays? Or even only in a church? Not only were the cars all lined up, and even some buses, but the shoes were all lined up outside the building. It felt very spirtual and really warmed my heart.
Today the kids are off of school for a public holiday. Hari Raya Haji is a muslim holiday about pilgrimage and sacrifice. More information can be found HERE and HERE. It shows a whole different side to the Muslim religion that not everyone knows about. I love how people who make the pilgrimage can get their white caps or songkoks and take the title of Haji for men and Haajjah for women. These are things I didn't know about but I am enjoying learning about. These are the things that I love showing my kids, how although we are all different we can all co-exist peacefully.
There are so many food places that are Halal friendly. Which means it is permissable for Islams to eat. These are usually next to or very near places that serve the beef or pork. At IKEA the other day there was a sign for a prayer room. IN IKEA! (picture is not that great)
I love that! I love showing my kids the tolerance and acceptance of the other religions and their practices. We don't have to believe what they believe but we should be respectful of their views.
That is just one of the many things that are becoming my favorites! I look forward to many more. Selemat Hari Raya - Peaceful celebration day.
So I checked with my Calendar and it seems we have been in Singapore for 6 full weeks now. I'm not gonna lie....it's been harder than I thought it would be. ALOT harder in many ways, but I really wouldn't change it. I still like the adventure I just hate the adjusting.
Like I was telling a new friend, take everything you know...all the old go to's for dinner, or discipline or easy dates and throw it out the window because either they don't work here or you just can't find what you need/want. My laundry is now halved for each load and takes 3 times as long! I don't have a dishwasher and have to turn on a heater for hot water, anywhere in the house! I can make pancakes but need to do the conversions from cups to milliliters, this is true on any of the cooking, my floors are all wood or marble and I can't find a mop that is worth it. It's those types of little things that by themselves would not be such a problem but put it all together and it just becomes overwhelming.
Those first couple weeks I felt like everyone wanted me to do the same things I had been doing in Utah to take care of everyone but it just wasn't possible here. Everyone was looking at me to do what I do and fix it, but I couldn't. I felt very inept. We didn't have all of our things and I was unsure where to get most of the other stuff. We did alot of online searching and going all over this Island to find anything and when we found some of our "regular comforts" we ended up paying more. Sometimes we couldn't find our old go to's so we've had to figure other things out. Singapore is very westernized in alot of ways and not so much in others. And it's those others that become too much some days. Those others are the things that stress you out and make you exhausted from just trying to figure it all out!
The thing is I knew it would be an adjustment, we all did and we were all prepared for it as best as we could. I guess I was unprepared for just how much I alone would have to adjust. There were a few days where all I did was lay in bed because the adjustments can be draining. A few days where I didn't want to think AT ALL and some days where I just wanted everyone to leave me alone and figure it out their damn selves! Other times where I've just cried or yelled at Bob because I am lost and don't know what else to do. Neither of us really understood why I was crying or yelling but he indulged me.
I didn't want to write that I had problems or how hard it can be because I don't want to sound like a whiner and I don't want anyone to worry but I can't lie, it's been hard many days. We've all had our ups and downs emotionally and have been struggling to find our new family rhythm. But don't worry, it's all part of the process. We are normal for once! I think we are getting the hang of it a little and we aren't yelling at eachother as much. I think there might be a light at the end of the tunnel.
I decided I wanted to get a smart phone while we were here in Singapore. I heard about the navigation maps and I REALLY needed one of those! I am the world's worst navigator and the only reason I found malls is because of the smell! Truth be told, I've been lost in a mall a few times, and not as a kid!
So, I ask my sister's boyfriend, aka W, to help me pick a phone because he seems to know his electronical stuff. I decide to go with a HTC desire instead of the all popular Iphone 4 because of the android operating system...W said it was better so that's why.
I'm excited to get my phone and it takes almost 2 full weeks of being here to get it. I open the package all ready for it to start smarting me out. Oh and how it outsmarte me! I could barely turn it on! It took me a few days to figure out how answer a call and I'm still not sure how to add other people as a contact!
And texting! OMG!!! NIGHTMARE!!! I have fat fingertips and so I am always typing the wrong thing. My Jake has been renamed to James and my friend Vickie is now Dixie. My phone thinks it's so smart it redoes my typing! Stupid phone. I won't even talk about the sexts I wanted to send my hubby but somehow they got saved in my drafts and I can't even find the draft folder! If it accidentally gets posted to facebook I'm going to be mortified!
I figured out how to get to my mail in my phone and so I emailing my sister back and forth and feeling that "look at me! I'm all emailing on my phone, how cool am I?" feeling, man was a feeling AWESOME! We were just joking around when I went to go drop the f bomb, as usual and instead the smart powers of my phone turn it into DUCK! Not what I was looking for! See, not so smart!
I can use the calendar but sometimes it beeps at me for no apparant reason. I haven't even tried to set an alarm because I think I might start disarming nuclear missiles somewhere in the world. I have used the navigation feature once and let's just say I figured out what the arrow means after wandering around aimlessly for 40 minutes.
And then I started thinking and realized it's an arranged marriage! We know we are good for eachother we just can't figure out how to use eachother properly. We're slowly getting the hang of it but it seems as if we are both shy to just jump right in! I've pushed it's buttons and it's just shut down on me! Seriously, isn't that what a marriage is about sometimes? We're getting more intimate with eachother as time goes on and I know someday I'll learn to love it, everyone says so. But right now I just want my old cell phone with it's QWERTY keyboard and no bells or whistles attached.
Natalie got her haircut the first couple weeks we were here. She loves going to get pampered a little and really loves getting her hair washed. Of course we asked for the same thing when we got to the store this time. They cut her hair first, and THEN they washed it. But they didn't wash it by the sink. Here in Singapore, well, at least at the place we went to they have another person come and wash her hair AT THE CHAIR! I went to take a picture but my battery had died. So this hairwasher lady squirts the shampoo in Natalie's hair and then slowly starts at the top of her hair rubbing in circles. Every now and then she adds a little more but it never drips down her face or on the floor. Natalie and I are looking at eachother like we really CAN NOT believe how they are doing htis. Then we shrug our shoulders and move along. By the end of the shampoo Natalie has all of her hair piled up on her head in shampoo and not one little bit is in her face, NOT ONE! Then they take her back to the sinks and rinse her hair out. She is ready to go back but I think she should wait for a little bit for it to grow back a little. Her hair is now off her neck and she says it feels a little bit cooler. Next time I promise to get pictures.
The Mayans were close but I'm throwing in the towel now! I am DONE shopping! Sick of it, don't wanna do it anymore and NO ONE and NO budget can make me. My husand is currently calling the equivalent of 911 right now because he knows there is something seriously wrong with me. I DON'T WANT TO SHOP ANYMORE!
I have always loved shopping, ALWAYS. I can remember being elementary age with a dollar burning the hole in my pocket. I'd ride my bike down to the local stationary store, Hallmark I think, where they sold everything back then. Cool pencils and erasers, some of them even smelly, pretty papers, lip gloss, candies, nail polish, regular stickers, puffy stickers and yes, smelly stickers..you name it they had it. It was the best place for a budding shopaholic to spend her money.
I love buying new things. Just the feel of the newness is awesome! It doesn't matter what type of thing it is as long as it's new, I'm in love. I've loved shopping for years. I love knowing what I could buy, what I can buy and what I have to buy. I love finding a good bargain and I love just browsing. I always thought I could do it forever, BUT....
We moved to Singapore and shopping has become my nightmare! There are malls everywhere and they all have a purpose. There is a sports mall, a kid mall, an electronics mall. However, depending on the mall, what it specializes in and where it is located at here on the Island depends on the price and products you can buy there. Sure most of the malls have clothing stores with the same name, but you can't get the same type of clothes at the same price. You might find the same shirt but a different price. So, shopping is a bit trickier.
I really miss my one stop shopping a la Walmart or Target. Just to get some kitchen supplies we had to go to a kitchen mart, which really was awesome but it takes FOREVER to get a to do list to done! Then we had to go somewhere else in order to get a grill for Bob because even though it is kitchen stuff, the grill is not. Go figure.
Not only that but when I want to go out shopping I have to THINK about where I want to go and how much I'm going to buy. We only have one car here so I have been taking Cabs or an MRT because I don't want to wake up early to take Bob to work. So, I can't go carrying around the usual baggage because I walk alot! And even when I do have the car I can't go knocking off 10 or more stores in one day because driving takes time and then searching for a damn parking place takes the rest of my time. I use to be able to do Walmart, Target, Craft store(S), and a few extras while stopping for lunch in one day and some of those days I had my kids. NOT ANYMORE! I miss it.
Did I mention I do alot of walking? Through the malls to the taxi stands or through to the MRT, where I usually stand because there is no room to sit. All this while carrying as few bags as possible, which I still have way too many. I still do this walking with a car too! I just do it through the parking areas. Shopping is dreadful! My feet hurt, my legs hurt, heck even my butt hurts! The first week we were here I twisted a finger and pinched a nerve, over 2 weeks later my finger is finally unnumb! That's alot of bags!!!
Therefore, I am done shopping and am going to start having everything delivered to my house. Except, I can't find alot of shops here that actually let you shop online! They actually want you to go to the store and then some of them will deliver it for you, sometimes.
It's not all bad, just about every single mall has a food court in the basement. That's where I can be found loading up before doing all the shopping.
I'm chatting with my sister Krissy on gmail instant message. I'm giving her crap about eating duck and lamb here and she's giving me crap back. We go back and forth about how cute they are and you shouldn't be eating them and how cows are cute too and we shouldn't be eating them. I tell her how delicious my roasted duck with spicy chocolate sauce was and she should make it for her awesome boyfriend instea of mutilating all those cows. All of a sudden she does the unthinkable and brings up my most favorite candy bars the twin bing! Love those things. NOT FAIR. For 2 full days now that is all I think about when I crave chocolate! She is such a B.
So, our first morning here in Singapore I do the usual shower and then proceed to do my hair. However, here in Singapore the only outlets are for shavers. Which DO NOT work with a curling iron or hair dryer no matter what type of converter you have, trust me. I realize that I will need to sit on the floor in front of the full length mirror and do my hair. I get the curling iron out and go to plug it in. I forgot I need a converter which is in the "adjoining" room. I go next door, realize I forgot the key to the luggage lock and go BACK to the other room to get luggage key but had forgot the room key. NO one but Grey is in the room and he has his ipod on so can't hear me ringing the bell. Currently I am locked outside of BOTH hotel rooms without keys to ANYTHING and I haven't even started on my hair. Grey finally answers the door, I get the luggage key, grab a room key and proceed to the other room WITH my curling iron because I really am getting mad right now and don't want my kids to see it. Plug all the converters into the curling iron and then into the wall socket. Sit and wait for a bit for the curling iron to warm up and me to cool down. Go to check my curling iron, should be nice and hot now, IT IS NOT HOT AT ALL! I forgot to turn on the outlet! Really irritated now, turn it all on make sure all things are still plugged in. Sit back down and the doorbell rings, hubby wants to know what is taking so long!!! OH MAN, did he get an earful! Finally get everything heated up and everyone out of the room. Sit on the floor and FINALLY get my hair done! Decide I can't wait to get to our house so I can do my hair like normal. COme to find out homes here are built only with a shaver in the bathroom because it is dangerous to have curling irons and hairdryers in the bathroom because of the water! However, they trust the men with the shavers? Seriously??!!?? UGH!!!!! So, I am currently on the look out for a cute vanity/makeup table/dressing table because I am NOT sitting on the floor for 2 years in order to do my hair. And later that first Saturday I ended up putting my hair up off my neck because it was just too damn hot!
I drove for the first time today. Sunday mornings are quieter around here and less traffic so Bob and I headed out to test my driving skills. Driving on the left side of the road isn't so hard but it isn't so easy either. It can be very confusing but there are plenty of arrows on the roads to help me figure it all out. So, we turn down a street close to our house and see this waiting for us....
there's a monkey on the right side of the road. Just sitting there. Bob had me stop so we could get a better picture of him. It looks like he's just watching traffic for me.
So we finish my driving lesson and go home to get the kids because they would LOVE this. Come to find out there was a whole family there!
as Grey said, our Utah house had deer and moose for wildlife and our Singapore house has Monkeys. Not quite our backyard but VERY close!
Just a few things I want to remember to blog about. Feel free to choose or just deal with what I actually do blog about!
salamanders and other lizards
washer and dryer
ice cream sandwhiches
Okay, there is more that I can't think of unless I'm trying to go to sleep. But this is just the first week! Keep coming back. Things might slow down, and they might not.
I'm also adding
mopping the floors
doing my hair
So, one of my lovely sisters gave our family the traveling Husker Gnome to take on our adventure for awhile. Then we scrapbook what the Gnome Henry has done with us in Singapore and send the Gnome onto the next family member. It is a great way to keep in touch with other members and a fun way to showcase what we all do. Henry seemed to have an awesome time in DC.
We didn't take Henry with us onto the plane because we were worried about him being hollow and not getting through security. We ended up putting him in a suitcase with 4 ZhuZhu pets and they all rode in the luggage. He really wasn't that happy about it but we didn't get flagged as a terrorist either! Henry was so happy when we got to the Hotel and finally got him out of that suitcase. I guess the ZhuZhu pets get a little too crazy and can't keep quiet! He arrived in one piece and spent the last 2 days gettting over some jet lag and looking out our Hotel window. He seems to really like Singapore and thinks the humidity is just like being home on the cornfields.
This morning he was ready to venture out with us to Grey's new school and we put him into my big purse. Took a cab to the new school and opened up my purse to find that Henry needed urgent care! His legs had broke off! Clean break for the poor guy, and he is now in 2 pieces but we didn't have the needed supplies to fix him up. He continued to travel in my purse until we could get him the urgent care he needed. He is such a trooper and didn't complain ONCE.
Natalie and I took a bathroom trip and as I'm rummaging in this huge purse of mine for some hand sanitizer i come up with only ONE Henry shoe! Remember they were together at first with a nice clean break and now they are seperated. Henry is now in 3 pieces! I had been extra careful with my purse so I'm unsure of how this all happened! Poor guy still is doing a good job even if he is all in pieces!
As soon as we got back to the Hotel we fixed him right up. Nothing a little glue and some hot looking surgeos in shower caps can't handle! He is drying under the "heat" lamp right now and I think Jake slipped him some chocolate. THis time it seems all the kings men COULD put him back together again!
Packers are here RIGHT NOW! They are packing up all the stuff that is going on the ship for us to use in Singapore. We won't see any of this for 7-9 weeks if it all goes well.
I am such an American. It has been a little hard deciding what all needs to go and what all we need to store for the next 2 years. I like my stuff. I like having it all near me whether I use it or not. I like knowing that JUST IN CASE I need it my stuff is somewhere in my house. Give me a minute and I can find it, or find something that I had forgot I even had!
I have done it, I have taken a house that started with almost 20,000 pounds (or 9072 kg, look at me being all Singaporean!) just 4 short years ago when we moved to Utah and have condensed it down to a little over 3000 pounds..wait for it..or 1361 kilograms! It wasn't easy and at some point I started thinking that if I don't need it for the next 2 years do I really need it at all? I do, I can't part with ALL My stuff!
I'm sad and I'm excited. We are getting so close to learning so many new and wonderful things. And having new things to drive us insane! Goodbye stuff, come sail away with me to a whole new adventure!
NO! not that time of the month! Silly people. It's that time to say goodbye to my friends and adopted family here in Utah. We leave in 2 weeks, flying out Sept. 30. So, I finally took some time today to get down to the school I use to work at and say good bye to the friends I had made there. I'm just not very good at goodbyes.
However, I did it. I try to make it a point in my life to let people know that they have touched my life and have made a difference. I don't think there was one person I worked with that I don't care about in some way but I do have my favorites! I have 2 adopted moms at that school. They made my days happy and gave me hugs when I wasn't happy. I know in my heart that these 2 women always have my best interests at heart and that they truly care about me. I'm so glad I made the time to go see them and let them know how I feel. Life is unpredictable and I wanted to make sure that these wonderful ladies knew that I loved them. Like I said, those things have become very important to me.
What I wasn't prepared for was that those 2 women told me that I also made a difference in their lives. ME, just a little nerdy nebraskan girl who is self conscious at times and has her foot in her mouth the rest of the time. When I started the job I knew I would make a difference in some of the kids I worked with but I never knew I'd make a differene with grown WOMEN. I found out I like this feeling. I see now why people dedicate their lives to helping others.
You often think that in order to make a difference it needs to be something in grand proportions. But in all honesty I think it is all the little things that add up. The hugs, the smiles, the how you do's the quick compliments. Whatever it is it can make a difference in someones life. And you know, the not even trying is the best part of making a difference I think. I was just myself, quirky in all my glory! I didn't pretend to be someone else or make apologies for who I am. I was me and they love me! That is a great feeling.
I think I have the best network of friends I have ever had in my life ad I am very grateful for all of them! So, if you are reading this and you consider yourself my friend then thank you. Thank you for making a difference in my life no matter how small or how big it mattered.
I said it before it was just that time of the month to say THANK YOU! I love you all and am so glad that God has put me in your path to meet you and learn from you all.
Ugh and double Ugh! I'm ready to be done and in Singapore. And then I'm ready to just stay here and say to hell with it! There are just too many people involved in my life! We have so many "experts" assigned to us that there are too many chiefs and not enough Indians. Information is getting messed up, paperwork is coming dangerously close to not getting done and I am stuck in the middle all confused and wondering WTF just happened! I keep reminding myself that it's getting closer and it will soon be OVER. That all of this is just part of the adventure but right now, I'm done adventuring. I want to sit in my own little corner where I KNOW what's going to happen and just RELAX! Maybe by Christmas? NO, I'm sure there will be something else. Bob and I seem to be excelling the more there is on our plate and usually that's not us. I'm just tired of it...I want my life back! I want to make the decisions and KNOW what I'm doing instead of making a wild guess and hoping for the best. Excuse me while I go kick and scream until I feel better, the candy hasn't been working.
All my kids started school today. They looked so nice and were all ready to go, even Jake who really doesn't like school too much but we keep working on it. We do the regular neighborhood breakfast and then walk down to the school. We didn't make it to the teacher meet and greet because we were in Nebraska and Singapore, so we find where the kids are lining up and say our goodbyes and goodlucks. They are just sooo excited. I leave Jake in his line and go to pay lunches. I get a strange feeling that I need to check on my kids and I go to Nat's classroom first. They don't have her on "the list" even though it is posted outside with her name on it when we looked Tues. morning. So, they don't have a desk ready for her at all. Same thing with Jake and this kid gets very nervous when he is unsure about something. I did tell the school we were moving but they would be in classes the first month until we moved. So I don't know what happened. Seeing their faces when they found out they didn't have a desk or any of the cool new stuff all the other kids had just broke my heart. They both handled it well but I should have checked to make sure all was set with the classes. I just assumed since the class lists outside had their names on it that they were still enrolled, the DAY BEFORE school started. I hate seeing my kids feel left out and like they don't belong, this year is going to be hard on them enough without their mom dropping the balls and keeping life smooth for them. I ended up getting a banana split for lunch and a grape slush. I wish you didn't feel so bad for your kids sometimes, I'm sure they will come home from school all good but I'll carry this guilt for a few days. At least I know that they have desks waiting for them in Singapore. I SAW those ones!
While we were gone these last 2 weeks we had a friends 16 year old daughter come and take care of our dogs so we didn't have to pay the kennel bill. Plus, we had watched their dogs twice so they kinda owed us. We get home last night after 13 hours of driving and I walk in to see dirty dishes in my sink! Now, I'm one of those people whose house is spic and span when I leave for any amount of vacation. I'm worried I will die and I do not want someone coming into my home and seeing how much of a pig I really am. So, finding dirty dishes in my sink was not one of the best things to come home to. On top of that the 3 plants that I have carefully nursed along the way and actually havent' killed yet are dead. Well, maybe not the cactus but it looks to be on it's last legs. Now, how lazy is it to put dirty dishes in my sink and not water the 3 plants that you see dying. I think it's just common sense, even at 16. Bob disagrees. I'm not saying she had to water all my plants just the ones where she obviously was looking! I've got the dishes done and all that now but it really did just tick me off last night!
Before we left for our Nebraska and Singapore vacations I took Natalie to get a pedicure. We decided to do this new trend called trendy nails unlimited at the pedicure boutique. They are basically stickers you can put on your toes or fingernails to add some extra sassiness to your nails. Check them out here. I got the crowns for my toes and Natalie ended up getting just her big toes with the psychedelic nails. I loved them and think it is a cute idea. I think I'll get the zebras or plaid next. They are very addictive with all their different options. I'm not sure if I can get them in Singapore and I'll be wearing sandals ALOT more then I ever did in Utah.
When we went to Nebraska we also visited the Omaha zoo and I lost one of my stickers. I thought I'd have to do without the sticker for the remainder of our vacation. However, when I was out with my sisters doing our traditional pedicures I got it replaced! But not with stickers! The lady hand painted the crowns on my toe and you can't tell the difference! It's my little toe here and it is an EXACT match. The ladies laughed so hard that I was putting stickers on my toes when all they had to do was paint it on. They really thought I was crazy. Then one of the ladies high fived my sister and said "Nebraska rules, we are better". It was hilarious. I know those ladies were making fun of me and my toes. AND then they ended up painting cute decorations on everyone elses toes.
Aren't we so cute? and mine are the only stickers!
So, we're moving to Singapore for two years. We are only allowed so many pounds to ship over so some of our stuff will be going into storage and some will be going with us. Yesterday I started on my clothes. I packed all my winter clothes away and started going through all the other clothes I have.
This is where I'm beginning to think I need help. I worked for 3 hours just in my closet. I threw 2 huge bags of clothes (lawn bags) into my Yard Sale pile 2 big moving boxes of my winter clothes and this is how my closet looks now. .......
To be fair those hangers use to be squished together and the top shelf was stuffed to the ceiling. But, SERIOUSLY! 3 hours of work and I don't think I got much accomplished!
I've looked through all the clothes again and I don't think there is much more I can rid of. I start having panic attacks! I MIGHT need that particular item of clothing. And what if I do need it and it's in my storage or worse yet, someone else is wearing MY clothes and looking better? UGH! I need serious help. If my closet is this bad what is the rest of my house going to be like?
Yes, I know this is public and you may hate it but I'm your mother and I get to do things like this. Deal.
You are the best researcher I know. Before we even knew we were going to Singapore you researched the country before making any opinions. You have been all for this move since the beginning. You know your stuff better than I do. You may even know Singapore better than someone that lives there. Do you know how relaxing it has been to know that I can go to you for answers on the time there, the exchange rate, the other countries around there and various other miscellaneous details? Details that would bog me down but not you. Lately you have been a well of information on all the schools in Singapore. You know exactly which school you would like to go to and are helping me to get all the information I need. I can trust your information because I know that you know this information totally. You have picked a school that looks challenging yet fun. You didn't choose the easy way at all, how many kids would do that? You are one amazing 14 year old.
You know that we will be moving a month into school and yet you are still doing your algebra homework and your AP geography homework. What kid would do that? YOU! Because you love to learn and you have never been ashamed of it.
Not only have you been the family researcher for many things in Singapore you have also had many good ideas and comments about our move. Your dad and I may not say this very often but we value alot of your ideas even if we don't go with your idea.
You have also helped with things around the house and have not complained. I really appreciate your can do attitude lately. You even take all my ranting and raving about a clean house in stride. Maybe your hearing aids are turned down?
I have always been proud to be your mom but lately I am more proud then I ever thought I could be. You are such an inspiration to me and you continue to surprise me with your actions or ideas. Thank you for being you but thanks the most for being MY son. You make me happy.
You can buy alot of things with that type of money. For instance....
Almost 93 candy bars
A very nice pedicure WITH those glitter toe things
A romantic dinner out with your significant other
Close to 67 bags of Nibs cherry. MMMM
Movie with popcorn and candy
An ipod shuffle
And I'm sure many other things but this is what that amount of money bought me.....My Grandma.
It bought me time to know her. She passed away about a year ago and that money is my inheritance. To me it's just money because I inherited so much more from her. My Grandma was funny, she once said to me that you don't need money to live on you can just live on love with a little wink. She had 9 kids and very little income sometimes so I guess she knew best. It never made her bitter to not keep up with the Jones'. She had what she wanted which I believe was the love of my Grandpa. My Grandparents kissed even when others said they were too old. I can remember my Grandpa calling her Josephine and putting a light hand on her back, and they would sometimes kiss. It was beautiful to my romantic heart. She could make tomatoes, pasta, and bread stretch forEVER. I swear that's all we ever ate besides the potatoes in the basement. My Grandma always had a kleenex in her bra and those knee-hi pantyhose that she rolled down. She had the infamous (now) O'Neill belly although it should be the Tyma belly. I think I was 12 before I realized my Grandma wasn't actually pregnant. She had 9 kids but never seemed worn out or "done" with the whole thing. She seemed to enjoy her Grandkids and some of us even got to go to her Camp O'Neill where we didn't do much but help clean and talk.
I inherited humor, love, perseverance, being happy with who you are, romantic gestures, stretching a dime, dorkiness and the fateful belly. My "inheritance" may only be 67.59 in numbers but her influence in my life is something you just can't put a number to.
Edward, How can I let you know all you mean to me? How I giggle whenever you walk or talk, how I see myself with you instead of that twit, Bella. How I know I am your true love if only that girl would leave! I would NEVER betray you with some filthy dog, no matter how cute his upper torso. The way you sparkle in the sunshine just mesmerizes me. If only all men were as sparkly as you, as only a true man can be. How your eyes look like they are looking straight at me, especially when they do those great zoom in shots. How I dream of you and wish that Vampires were real.
But WAIT....I can say all that to you now because I have this.....
Now, I can whisper sweet nothings in your ears. I can use you like no other. You'll hold any (drink) I want. You will always be there for me. You can sit for hours by my side and still be fulFILLed. You Edward, my Edward are truly the best Vampire to ever happen to this girls life. Cheers to you my sparkly vampire, may we have many good times all over the world!
Oh, and the movie was good. Edward kissed Bella too much, Jacob has one NICE upper body, and it was well made. Still like the books better but I can't have everything.
I'm not talking about the original 4 seasons of summer, winter, spring and fall. I'm talking about the seasons of life. I had been thinking about my life a lot this year, you know the pushing 40 and being a mom of a teenager and all that. And then one night I was blog hopping going to blogs I use to love and didn't have the time to read once I started working. Found out I still love some of those blogs and I found the one post that spoke to me on this post on this bloggers blog. So she is the inspiration for my newest post. There will be 2 now in less than a week!
We all have seasons to our life. I've already been through most of them.
The Hunting season: Defined as looking for a mate by dating all the wrong ones and sometimes even the right ones but not the right one right then. Done with that one.
The Mating season: or most people refer to as "when you have babies". Did that with a result of 3 babies.
The only I watch animated TV season: Known to most all mothers as I have kids under 5 and must keep them occupied or I'll never be showered. Did that too and I actually miss some of those animated shows.
So, how do I define this season. This one of school age kids. They don't need me or want me as much. They are becoming their own little people. This season of working outside of home. This season of change in my marriage because of my new job. This season of changing relationships. I'm still not sure how to define it. I just know that sometimes I feel like the only seasons I have left to look forward to is the Menopause season and the Grandbaby season.
But I'm only 37 so there should be at least 10 years before I hit that season. So, I think I'll make this season one of self discovery. Of learning more about me and my limits. Of being a better, friend, wife, mother, daughter, sister,worker and anything else I decide to try. I can still be all those things and get to reacquaint myself with me, because lets face it. When you are a mom and wife you sometimes forget that you are anything else. But I do remember I liked me before and even during these last few seasons so I am sure I will like me during this next season.
The last week of school I started craving one of my favorite Lemonades of all time. You can only get it at a little restaurant here called Tucano's. I didn't really want to go out to eat I just wanted the lemonade. So, I went searching the handy dandy internet. I found it here. And it tasted EXACTLY like the restaurants. It is soooo yummy on a hot summer day.
While I was looking around the site I found a bunch of other recipes we have tried. Bob grilled some artichokes last Sunday for the first time. I did not know that artichokes take sooooo much work to eat. But they were VERY good! Jake could probably eat a whole artichoke himself.
That same day Natalie and I made some cupcakes for us and a friend. They were really delish too. The recipe has a link to a cool frosting that I can actually make by myself. It's so easy and tastes so yummy. I have also made an easy tuna pasta and a forgotten jambalya that I'll post the recipes to later because Ican't find them online. Both were very good.
Today, the weather isn't cooperating for us to make s'mores so we found this recipe and made it. They are called campfire cookies and are really easy for the kids to help make. My favorite thing is watching the kids cook with Bob, he is so much more patient with them than I am and they had a great time making them. (Bob doesn't like the way he looks in the picture...I told him not to worry because it's only going on my blog and no one reads it).
Finally....Greyson is a potato chip freak! He loves them. But only the regular salted kind...he doesn't like his chops all fru fruieee. I had some potatoes that were going bad so we looked for a baked potato chip recipe, found one and put him to work. They taste great and will go with dinner tonight. He did alot of the work himself. I can't find that recipe right now but I know we just got it off line somewhere.
I have so many different things I want to write about and they all go jumbling together. Then I over think that I might make someone upset by the things I post and I shouldn't think that way because this is my blog and if you don't like it don't read it. The things I say and write on here are my opinions, thoughts and feelings. I own them and do not ask you to own them. Hopefully I can update this more during the summer. I really do miss writing and getting my thoughts out of my head. I just need to stop thinking and write. So, if I have any readers left hang in there. I'll be back!
My mom has just left Utah back for her home state of Nebraska after spending a nice almost week with us. It was a fun week but I am always left feeling like it was never enough. There wasn't enough to time to spend, even if we would have stayed up the whole week. When you only see eachother every other year or so there is alot to catch up on. Even if you do talk on the phone weekly. I'm left wondering if enough topics were covered so both my mom and I understand how we both have grown and how our lives are going. Did we just touch base or was it "enough"? I NEVER feel like there is enough time. Not enough time to do some of those fun things that are here in Utah. To show her our home state and the things it offers for our family. Did we show her "enough"? Was there enough time for the kids to enjoy their Grandma. For both kids and Grandma to goof off and get to know eachother. Did they enjoy eachother "enough"? Was there enough activities that my kids and their awesome personalities showed through or was there too much time to see the bad side of their personalities? How much is "enough"? Did I get to show off enough of my awesome personality? Enough of how much I've grown and yet still need a mother at times. Was there "enough" showboating?
This is the first year I have worked when my mom came to visit so I felt like there was even less time. This year I particularly feel like there was not enough time, or conversation or fun or showing off or just ANYTHING. It was harder than usual. She got to see the kids' school and meet my coworkers and we found a new favorite family game but was any of that enough?
if I were a day of the week, I'd be saturday! if I were a time of day, I'd be 2 P.M. if I were a direction, I'd be lost all the time if I were a tree, I'd be a flowering fruit tree. if I were a tool, I'd be a nail or stapler, they are always needed. if I were a flower I'd be a rose. if I were a musical instrument I'd be a flute. if I were a color, I'd be pink. if I were a fruit, I'd be strawberries. if I were an element, I'd be FIRE! ;) if I were a food, I'd be chocolate. if I were a place, I'd be the ocean. if I were a material, silk. if I were a scent, I'd be vanilla. if I were an object I'd be a radio. if I were a song I'd be all we need is love.