since i haven’t written in over two months, i thought i would write a few words. (and, i am in london right now, after all. when will i have the chance to write from london again?)
london. what to say? full of life, all things busy and fast, more things to do and see than there would ever be time to complete. samuel johnson once said, ‘when you are tired of london, you are tired of life.’ well spoken. doug and i have really crammed quite a bit into this week: mary poppins and spamalot, tons of pubs and cafes and yummy street stands, bookstores and other stores (including the all-famous ridiculously unbelievable harrods), buckingham palace and today kensington palace, portobello road market, high tea this afternoon and evensong tonight at westminster abbey, the tower of london, tower bridge, a cruise on the thames, st. paul’s, the london aquarium…there’s really too much to name in the 2 minutes remaining i have on this computer.
i love london. i do. i fell in love with it instanteously when i came two years ago.
but home does call. ARKANSAS calls. did i ever think i would feel this way? definitely no. but arkansas is home. my family and friends are there. most importantly, my BABY is there. i–we–have missed her tremendously. i got to talk to her on the phone yesterday for the first time.
oops. time’s up.
well, i’ve been quite a little blogging hermit lately, haven’t i? other than work, what have i been doing for the last two months instead of blogging?
- Celebrating the first birthday of Elisabeth Grace
not having devoted a huge post to this causes me guilt–DAILY. i will soon–better late than never? i don’t know, you tell me.
- Turning 30
perhaps because i had “dreaded” the big 3-0 all year, turning 30 was really not a huge deal, emotionally. i had a very nice birthday and felt extremely happy and loved. for what more could i have asked?
- Trying to lose weight…
…and doing it! this is my ninth week doing weight watchers online, and in my first 8 weeks i’ve lost 21.4 lbs. (hey, every tenth of a pound counts, doesn’t it?!) :) i’m really happy with the results so far and will renew my online membership after the initial 3 months deal ends. my weight has ALWAYS been the most shameful and embarrassing topic for me…and i have always, in the past, done everything to avoid discussing it. well, not anymore! i have already found that in telling others–even here in the open on my blog, for heaven’s sake!–i feel so much more freedom and am prompted to continue trying to improve myself and my health.
going along with that…
- Walking with Elisabeth
i bought E a fancy schmancy new stroller–the Jeep Overland Limited Jogging Stroller, to be exact. yes, i realise i purchased a jogging stroller…and maybe i’ll work into doing that! for now, though, it is working just fine as a walking stroller. i LOVE it–it even has a thing called “music on the move.” simply hook up your ipod or player of choice and enjoy the tunes coming out of the speakers! i think E is okay with my “on the go” playlist, but am i a horrible mom for making her listen to eminem, weezer, inxs, the clash, gnr, green day and the like?…oh well :)
- Daydreaming about London
yeah, i am getting PRETTY pumped about our trip in January. last week i reserved our room!! i’ve spent months poring over website after website trying to find a good deal. my requirements were not all that picky: i wanted a place that is clean, includes breakfast, has a good location & is close enough to public transport stops. well…finding a place that has all that WITH a low price tag attached (as we are definitely “budget travelers”) has been quite an ordeal. i definitely did NOT want to stay in a hostel–doug, on the other hand, had been picturing a place where the bed comes down from the wall and the room’s only light is from a lone dangling light bulb. he just really wanted that “experience.” seeing as it is his graduation present, i guess the right thing would have been to give into his wishes, but i didn’t do the right thing. well, i compromised. kind of. :) the place we’re staying is called the london house hotel and is a budget hotel/hostel. here’s the kicker: it was recently remodeled, and if you visit the site, you’ll see that the “super” rooms (where we’ll be) look really nice. a flat-screen plasma and an ensuite room WITH floor space?!?! all for 54 pounds a night?!…unheard of in central london!!! I STRUCK GOLD! :) now i can’t wait to daydream some more and plan out our days…
- Embossing. LOVE it.
i’m in love with paper source, and so imagine my delight when i received a gift certificate from j & jeb for my birthday! i bought some new stamps and tons of embossing powder…fun fun!! thanks so much, again, my friends! :) also, dear dougley took me on a shopping spree to hobby lobby!! i got an embossing heat tool (i had previously been using a candle or lighter!!) and more stamps and some stamp cleaner. i wish i could have my own stationery shop/business–what a dream!
- Devouring Harry Potter
i have seen the first four movies, but i’ve never had a desire to read the books. my husband, on the other hand, has read each one about three times! so on the sunday after the big release date for the last book, when doug asked me to read aloud to him while he drove, I.WAS.HOOKED. “that’s it!” i said. “i have to read them now.” and so that afternoon, i picked up harry potter and the sorcerer’s stone, and i have gone full speed ahead through each of them since then. i am merely pages from completing harry potter and the deathly hallows, and the thought of finishing the story…oh, there are too many emotions to name! let me just say that i now completely understand the madness behind all the hp fans out there. completely.
so. what have you been up to? :)
· obviously, i’m stuck in a rut doing these little bullet posts.
· do you ever forget to put on deodorant? yuck—i did today. how could i be in SUCH a hurry that i could forget such a crucial thing??
· we got home last night from a whirlwind one night trip to memphis…to find that my precious Mother had washed ALL of Elisabeth’s laundry. (and there was QUITE a bit—three loads worth!!) she is more wonderful than i could ever express.
· i’ve been living with a shadow overhead…have you seen music & lyrics? i started watching it last night after getting E to sleep, and i LLLLOVE it. that sweet little song has been in my head all morning. i can’t wait to finish the movie tonight!
· my sister, Rachel, is unbelievably hilarious sometimes. she called me at work this morning, and here’s a snippet of the beginning of our conversation (she starts):
“hiiiiii! i tried to call you ALL weekend!”
“oh really? it never showed up on my phone!”
“well, that’s because i didn’t have your number.”
· thanks SO MUCH for the first birthday party ideas. i’m really thinking about those polka dots! (i actually had previously considered that as a theme!!) although…you know, the lizard theme—or even the polka dot lizards—is really tempting, Rix!! ha ha. believe it or not, speaking of funny Rachel, she actually called Elisabeth “lizard breath” one time—no joke. (i didn’t find it funny at the time, but now—especially after your comment—it’s a knee-slapper.)
· besides party themes running through my head, i’ve got London on my mind! (what else is new.) i think it’s really going to happen! although January is the coldest (and rainiest, i believe) month of the year there, that is when we’re planning to go. ANY LONDON TIPS??
- one month from today, my youngest sister will be getting married. WHAT?!
- Julie, you will already be married!!
- did you hear last week about the boy with the spiders in his ears? i’ve thought of this EVERY night before going to sleep since then…earplugs, anyone?
- for girls only: commando. do you ever go? i had to yesterday due to the MOUNDS of dirty clothes yet to be washed–and it wasn’t as bad as i thought. no, it wasn’t my first time, but it had just been a long time. (unlike one unnamed sister, whom i think does this pretty regularly?? can’t imagine.)
- i wish i could hire some “helpers” for my parents. because their days are filled with everything Elisabeth, they simply do not have the time to clean their home and unpack boxes that are yes, still sitting untouched. the space they’re in is SO much smaller than their previous home, and so there’s literally not room for everything. this is such a burden for them–especially my Mom–and so it’s a burden for me, too. if i had vacation time, i would be there in a flash. could i please, like Evie, just stop time for a while?
- Elisabeth is ten months old today. how is THAT possible? :)
- a year ago, i was enjoying a night’s layover in London on my way to Finland. (again, how is that possible? that it’s been a YEAR?)
- i had my first official Mother’s Day on Sunday. so surreal. and precious and wonderful.
- doug finished SO WELL this semester!!! i could not be any more proud of him! after his trip to India this summer (mission trip, simultaneously earning 6 credit hours), he’ll only have ONE–count ’em, ONE!!!–more semester to go. -big sigh-
- i’m in the process of planning his huge graduation present we’ve been dreaming of for years…A TRIP TO EUROPE!! (just London, we think. and maybe a chunnel visit to PARIS!!) :)
thanks for all the recent sweet comments about my header photos! :)
i went a little cropping crazy recently, and i have tons of photos lined up for display–not only for variety and to keep rebeekah a shade above boring, but also so i can have some writing material! i commonly suffer from blogger’s block, and i thought this would be a good way for me to keep going.
the first photo i chose is of my beautiful sister, Sarah, taken by me while we were in London together last summer.
London, O, London, i love you so. i fell in love with you during our short affair last year, lasting sadly only four tiny days, and i have painstakingly longed for you since.
i had always wanted to go to London. i was bitten by the irrepressible travel bug at a young age, being blessed with international travel experiences thanks to my dad’s job as a chemical engineer and his accepting of a position in Western Australia. many of you may already know, but on our way back to the States after living in Australia for almost six years, we had what i’ve always called a “mini-world tour.” i got to see Singapore, Cairo, Rome, Athens, Jericho and Jerusalem, and the memories have stayed with me for over twenty years now.
since that trip, i’ve traveled overseas a few times–twice back to Australia, once in college on a singing tour to France, Germany and Austria, and then on a mission trip to Honduras 6 1/2 years ago. one of the reasons, i’ll admit, i decided to go on the rotary trip to Finland last year was because i had not traveled since going to Honduras. and those of you who love to travel can imagine the burning and the almost physically present NEED to travel! :)
because Finland was such a blur of uniforms, packed (often unpleasant) itineraries, and keeping on of the diplomatic, professional mask to various host families and rotary members, many days during those 4 1/2 weeks all i could think of was the extended weekend in London i had planned with my sister to cap off my stay in Europe. she was coming over to stay for a while in France, anyway, so she decided to come a little early and meet me in London after i was done in Finland.
backing up a bit–prior to reaching Finland, my team and i had decided to do a one-night layover in London. i remember sitting on the tube for the first time; although incredibly exhausted and jetlagged, as we passed (above ground) through communities and i took in the beautiful, old cobblestone buildings and roads and all that was, in fact, London, i couldn’t help but weep. i was in London. after years of wishing, i was finally there. and perhaps i was a bit emotionally unstable due to the jetlag and the trip to Finland that lay before me (and perhaps due to being five months pregnant), but i was overwhelmed by a sense of completion, of longing fulfilled, of a feeling that perhaps i was arriving some place i was meant to be all along.
i don’t know if i could make it living there. i like to imagine i could, but who knows, really? but isn’t that the mystery and attraction of travel? you go, you fall in love with the place, you subsequently picture yourself there in a daily routine…you may never return and thus always have this magical affair–and i say magical because it more than likely is just that and not realistic, as it would be if you were to actually go again, let alone live there as you dream–and love for this golden place that you still find yourself talking and daydreaming about months and years later to anyone who will listen, including unsuspecting blogging friends.