25 July 2011

The Big Move Week

I have been quite MIA lately.  We have been busy busy with purging, selling, purging some more and packing.  The movers come tomorrow to pack the last of it up.  We are so ready to be done with this part of it!  The traveling doesn't bother me one bit!  And the unpacking isn't so bad!  But the packing, bleck!  Ha!

We will move into a colleague's apartment (they're in the US) on Tuesday.  We'll met up with a few people those days and maybe be lazy by the pool a bit.  Early Saturday morning we'll head to Vienna with 5 carry-ons, 4-5 suitcases (not sure yet) and one cat!  Hopefully our stuff will be delivered to us on Monday morning.

I'm not sure when I'll have a chance to update again, but I'll try to write a brief note soon after we arrive.

We appreciate your prayers for us!

11 July 2011

Leaving the USA

I had one more full day in Texas before heading back to Madrid.  My dad was staying with my brother, so my mom and I took the day to do a bit of downtown Granbury shopping.  It is a B&B capital complete with a beautiful city square dotted with all kinds of cute shops. 
We headed to the Merry Heart Tea room for some chicken salad sandwiches and then walked the square a bit.

Even though I wasn't there for 4th of July it was a treat to see all the red, white & blue!

That evening we met up with my brother, Kerry and niece, Michelle.  I was again, not thinking and didn't pull out the camera.

Tuesday morning we headed to the airport.  I was to catch a flight from Philadelphia and then on to Madrid.  I soon found out my plane was arriving late putting me late into Philly.  The desk agent assured me I had plenty of time..........ha!! She didn't seem to take in to consideration all the extra taxi-ing the planes might do in both Dallas and Philly.

I did get this great cloud shot enroute.
While coming off the plane I learned another guy was also going to Madrid.  He took off running.  I tried, but I am no runner and I seem to suffer from exercise induced asthma, so there was no way I could keep up.  He was a very tall, very athletic young African American man, so of course he made the plane!!  I did not!!  He was probably thinking how pathetic that the short stumpy almost 40 year old woman didn't make it!!  Ha!

I arrived 10 minutes before the plane was to leave and it was too late!!  Me and 6 other people!  I remember a day when they held the plane for late arrivals!  Not anymore!

It was SO frustrating to be sitting there seeing the plane, seeing the pilots and not being able to board the plane!  I don't know about you, but I hate the public cry!  Not other people doing it.   I just hate to do it myself and avoid it as much as possible!! But, it was not to be held this time. I did the public cry! Oh my! My face and nose get beet red and it is hideous!! I don't know why really.  I guess I assumed that I would have to wait 24 hours before heading to Europe.  I felt so bad for the guy helping me with a new ticket. Poor guy, he really was trying to help me feel better and joking with me some. He did feel sorry that I missed the plane.  Luckily, there was a plane heading for Lisbon, Portugal in just a couple of hours.

I then needed to try and find a phone to call Jerry. The ladies at the airport information desk were very helpful and when their desk phone wouldn't allow a call to a TX number (it was our Vonage-VOIP number in Madrid), one of them let me use her cell. How sweet is that?! Jerry didn't pick up since it was the middle of the night. It had been hot in Madrid so I thought he might be sleeping in the living room. But it just so happened that the airport had free internet!!  I have not been to an airport yet with free wifi!! So I was able to send Jerry a message that I had missed my flight.

I boarded the plane to Lisbon and it was fairly uneventful. The seven of us that missed the flight to Madrid were almost certain we were going to miss our Madrid flight in Lisbon as well. We got held up in passport control and then in security. I about lost it in their security section where they had to recheck my bag. They had a very inefficient process and the guy checking was taking forever with another lady.  I don't usually do things like this, but all the sudden I looked up and very loudly said "Can someone please help me, I am going to miss my flight????!!!!!" About 5 seconds later he got moving on my bag only to discover that it was nothing and I got an "I'm sorry for the delay." Another grr!!

Luckily though the plane we were to be on arrived late and the 7 of us all got a seat and were on our way (albeit a tad late) to Madrid and I even got a row of 3 seats all to myself!

I was happy to see the Spanish countryside!  Almost home!

I was worried about my baggage.  Lucky baggage, it made my Madrid plane in Philly when I didn't!!  It was just a bit inconvenient that we had to drive to another terminal in Madrid to pick it up. But I was SO glad it was there waiting for me and we didn't have to track it down all over Timbuktu!

So there ya have it.  My bit-o-drama on the way home.

Much happened while I was away.  The kids had all kinds of fun things at school.  I'll be sure to catch you up soon!

10 July 2011

My Trip to the US of A!

After our great trip to the beach I had 6 days until I was off on my 9 day trip to the US.  I was on my way to a board meeting for the online Christian infertility ministry, Hannah's Prayer, which is also a non-profit organization.  As a non-profit organization, we had lots to do!!

First stop though was Texas.  I had arranged it to fly in and out (of Madrid) by way of Texas and purchasing separate tickets to go to CA.  That way I could spend some time with my family and do some shopping.  I had less than 48 hours in TX before heading to CA and I packed that time up!!  My first stop after getting into the airport was for Mexican food at Abuelos where I met up with some good friends, the Vanns.  Where I forgot to take a picture!!  I was having too good a time chatting it up, although I did pull out the ITouch to SHOW pictures.  Somehow TAKING a picture slipped my mind!  Ha!  It was fun, guys!!

I fell asleep in the car on the way to my parents house in Granbury.  Then of course I woke up bright and early with jet lag setting in.  It didn't stop my from getting going for a full day of shopping in Fort Worth!!  Kohl's, Old Navy, Bath & Body Works, and Target with lunch at Chick-fil-a!!  Woohoo!!

Couldn't resist a silly pic in front of Target!  Ha!  Couldn't see very well either, it was SO bright!
That evening I met up with my niece, Corrie.  We hadn't seen each other in about 8 years!  With both of our comings and goings from the US we just kept missing each other.  We had a fun time!
The next morning my parents and I were up bright and early to meet my in-laws at Cracker Barrel before catching my flight to California where I had to continue fighting jet-lag with the additional 2 hour time change.  That's ok though, it wasn't too bad.  Simply Sleep was my friend during this trip!

I meet up with my other 5 board members.  We originally were going to host a retreat as well as the board meeting, but we had to cancel.  Most of us had already bought plane tickets before we cancelled, so we were all there for an extra amount of time.  We had lots of business to discuss and it gave us ample time to get it all done!!  We were sad to have to cancel the retreat, but God gave us the time we needed to get down to business!
 We set up shop in a corner of the hotel and went to work!
With the extra time, we were able to get a bit of playing in too!
And evening out to dinner by the beach!
Karon, Rachel, and me
 Sarah, Traci & Kris

I asked the girls, before coming, if there was a Trader Joe's nearby.  Texas doesn't have them yet and I'd heard so much about all their great products.  Not only that, but I had tried some of their freeze dried bananas a few years ago when some volunteers left a part of a package behind in Prague.  I fell in love!  The girls thought it was so funny that I wanted to make a trip to TJ!

I'd also heard about their chai mix!  Yum!
These granola bar packages cracked me up!
I also got some good eating in!!  I had 2 firsts in one day!  A trip to TJ's and my first In-N-Out burger!!  Don't forget "Animal Style!"
I love these Christian establishments!!  Different versus from the Bible printed on every cup!

Being silly at the mall!!  This is just one of the many!  I thought I'd refrain from showing all of them!  Lots of trying on of hats and jewelry!  Fun time with girls!!
A trip to Disney......
.....Downtown that is.  Have you SEEN the prices of Disney?!  Something like $84 per adult and 70-something per kid!  Yikes!  I am but a poor girl.  I can't see us taking our kids anytime soon!  Wow!

Disney Downtown was fun with all it's shops and eating places.
The Lego Store!!
Not quite in, but a picture at the gate!!  So close, yet so far away!
Office supply shopping with a little break in the office chair section!
On our last day we had a chance to get some fish tacos in at Wahoos!
Shrimp for me!  Oh my, yummy!!
Stay tuned for my last few hours in Texas.  I had quite a doozy of a time getting home to Madrid!!


  Deeper - adj. 1. extending or situated relatively far down from a surface: a deep pool. It's been a long time since I've ...