Friday, May 9, 2014

Friday {Re}flection

My apologies for skipping last week, but we put in our notice to move out and so the landlords have been bringing strangers through this house we rent.  They raised the rent a few hundred dollars for the next would-be tenants and have set lofty expectations of it in the ad so it hasn't been taken yet.  (When I saw the ad, especially the photo taken from afar so that flowering bushes appear to frame the house, I was like, is that the house where we live??)  I dislike having strangers walk through my house.  I wish the landlords would place a fair market and realistic price for this 1960's home so the madness can stop.  Alas....
Daily Diaries with Diaries of an Essex Girl

The beginning of May included the neighborhood ladies' annual brunch, hosted potluck-style at a neighbor's house in her lovely backyard.  Being gluten free and health-conscious, I brought Jell-o in little goblets, and was able to partake in the grits, fruit, and shrimp with cocktail sauce.  The ladies turned up on this warm day in bright springy clothing and it was nice.  I wore an almost flourescent maxi dress with a retro headband across my forehead.  My fine hair goes slack in the humidity, but what to do?
Brunch dress.  Love the dress, it's almost flourescent with pockets and a tribal braided belt.  Not sure about the headband, but my boyfriend likes it.  Sorry, I am not photogenic.  I look so annoyed, lol.

There seems to be a social divide between the ladies who have lived here many years and the ones who have only been here a few years like us.  I met a fun, nice, young professional mom who works for Cartoon Network who said I reminded her of an adventurous friend of hers.  I enjoyed talking to her.  Upon seeing the others and being asked repeatedly where we are being stationed next and telling them about house-hunting in San Diego got really annoying, but oh, well.  Everyone reacted positively about San Diego, but I must say some people showed facial expressions (my law enforcement background at work here) that revealed a sort of envy in a bad way, as if I had inadvertently "one-upped" them or highlighted the mundanity in their own lives.  Thankfully there were a few secure and balanced ladies who seemed genuinely happy for me.  I had wanted Hawaii or Europe, so San Diego was not my first choice, so I was not trying to one-up or brag.
My Marine took me down the road to the annual Lemonade Days in Dunwoody, Georgia.  They had a nice veteran's monument with a glass atrium of flags representing each military branch.  As soon as we walked into the tentapalooza area, someone shouted my Marine's name, and it was a retired USMC General whom we have come to know during our time here through his and my Marine's community involvement.  I felt the need to do a self-check to make sure I was dressed in a non-embarrassing way (no cleaveage, etc.) and was relieved that I was.  I scarfed down a caramel apple (gluten free, very fresh) and we listened to a really good band of gray-haired rockers play acid rock classics.

In anticipation of my upcoming Europe trip, I stayed up one night researching my family tree and ancestry to 7 generations in Norway and found my great-grandma (who died when I was 10 or 11)'s great-grandma's farm near Lillehammer.  It was cool to see some names on the census showing they had come on a boat over here around 1890.  There were a couple guys named Hans and lots of farmers, which I already knew.  Growing up, I heard my grandparents speak some Norwegian, but I never learned it.  I've been taking Norwegian lessons and I was surprised that I was actually able to read some Norwegian text online, for example in the book of farms listing.  My other half is Swiss, but I've already been to Switzerland.  Very clean and beautiful with Alpine mountains, lakes and timbered houses.

In Norway, we are planning to try out airbnb for the first time, see the jaw-dropping fjords, the Viking historical stuff, Edvard Munch's The Scream, the royal palace and a big festival with revelers in traditional attire, practice speaking Norwegian, and possibly visit a glacier and do some hiking or kayaking.  The temp will be 40-60 degrees, hopefully a welcome relief after the 85 degree humidity we've been having in Georgia.  We chose Norway due to my heritage (my Marine has already been to the countries of his ancestry) and because we wanted to explore a country that is new to both of us.
Me and my bike (picture taken in Virginia)

We hiked at Sweetwater Creek (see blog post here) and we have also gone to ride our bikes on the Silver Comet Trail.  I ride my black and pink beach cruiser with 3 speeds, ringing my bell when I pass children.  Seth has a fancy, expensive, high-maintenance triathalon style road bike that has the weird valves.  Last year we found a great air pump that converts to fit both types of tire valves.  Love it!

In preparation for our pcs (move to California), we've been taking out stuff from the attic and donating things to Goodwill.  I have some "nicer" clothing that I wanted to try to take to a Consignment Shop and PSYCHO SISTERS consignment went through the summer items and chose 6 things and wrote me a check for $42.  Not bad.  Now, maybe I'll try to sell some handbags online....
It's been hot and sunny, so I've been laying out at the pool.  I avoid tanning my face, but since we moved to Georgia my doctor told me I was Vitamin D deficient so I actually need sun.  I'm tan already and I've met some fun people.  My boyfriend (a ginger, aka fair, redheaded man who does not tan) joined me on Sunday and it was nice.  We have heavy duty SPF for him, and there was an umbrella.  He actually gets sunburned through the windshield in his car.
I also took advantage of a complimentary massage at the gym.  She kneaded me to relaxation!
Mother's Day Gift Scarf

Mother's Day Gifts- I mailed them.  We bought them awhile back at an art festival.  We often get the same thing for both of our moms, since they both like jewelry and handmade items.  One year we got them interesting bracelets made from fancy buttons, and this year we got them each a "scarf" that is made out of ribbony fabric.  We avoid buying them dust-collecting knick knacks and they don't really like spas or lotions.  Both of their birthdays are coming up, and I may make them paintings (I dabble in black ink sumi-e) or paint a ceramic serving dish my mom requested.

I have been a little slow this week, as I ate something (possibly gluteny?) that bothered my stomach earlier in the week.  My boyfriend has been out of state at a conference, so I'm looking forward to his return.  I have kept up my 5x/week workouts, including a 5 mile run on the indoor track and a 5 mile hike with the hiking group at Lake Alatoona this week, where afterward we ate lunch at Swheat where I ate gluten free chicken tenders (a bit dry, but a tasty honey-mustard sauce) and sweet potato fries.

May has several birthdays and other important events in my life such as:
+Military Spouse Appreciation Day May 9 (see my blog post here)
+Celiac Disease Awareness Month
+Teacher Appreciation Day (as a former teacher, I enjoy saluting other teachers)
+Syttende Mai (Norwegian Constitution Day- the second largest celebration in the world is in +Wisconsin where I have family, I also used to teach my students about our language, food, music, history, and traditions)
+Mother's Day
 +Memorial Day (where we plan to attend a local Veteran's celebration where the guest speaker happens to be a retired General who actually bought my Marine his sword as a prize for being the best at something when he was commissioned into officerdom).  Small world.

This weekend, my Marine gets back and hopefully he won't have to work too much.


  1. I love that color of the dress!!! Where is it from? Thanks so much for linking up!

  2. Thanks. Fun to link up! I think the dress is from Dillard's. Love their dresses.

  3. I live in Sweden, right next door to Norway. Norway is such a beautiful country, I'm sure you'll have a blast there. I went there last summer for a short road trip. The Geiranger fjord is AMAZING.


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