Thanksgiving Approacheth!

I wish I could use that as an excuse for my non-existence in this space lately; but I can't.  Honestly, the only thing keeping me from long, insightful, photo-filled blog posting is plain old tiredness.

I am exhausted and I can't quite figure out why....  Those that know me well can vouch for the fact that I can stay up until all hours of the night writing or just generally mucking about on my laptop.  This week has been quite the exception.  I have gone straight to bed every night for the past week with hardy a glance spared for my cold and lonely laptop.  Don't tell too many people (cause I don't want to diminish my street cred); but I have been asleep before 11 almost every night for the past 10 or so.  I think my husband thinks that aliens have taken his real wife and replaced her with a very very tired pod person...

I don't even have a whole lot that I can blame the tiredness on either.  I am busy, to be fair; but I used to work 40+ hours a week, take care of the house etc... in my old life while staying up till one in the morning most nights without breaking a sweat.

Maybe it's the clean Sydney air?  Maybe it's the lapping of the water outside my window at night? Maybe it's the glass of wine with dinner?  Maybe I'm just anemic?

At any rate, it's 20 till eleven and I'm about to turn into a pumpkin......

It's a dangerous season out there for pumpkins so I think I had better go to bed!

Hello There

Not much going on here, and I have not one single picture to post.  In keeping with my blog post from a couple of days ago I am trying to pry myself out of the bad habit of only posting when I have a ton to talk about and a ton of pictures to post.

We have a new person starting at work on Monday - he is from Washington Joe and I have been trying to help him out with the whole "being American and settling in Sydney" process.  Poor guy - we had him over for dinner tonight and I think I talked his ear off.  I need to tone down my mothering instincts in a serious way!

We went out on a fun excursion last weekend that I will blog about as soon as I have the photos ready (I was lazy and didn't take any so I am totally using someone elses) and this weekend we have almost nothing planned.  If the weather holds than we might go lay on the reserve for a while; but, if we do, Joe will have to take a bath in sunscreen first.  Anyone else interested? (in the reserve part - not the bath part...)

I almost forgot!!!  On Tuesday we had fly screens installed in the majority of the apartment!  I cannot tell you how exciting it is to be able to leave the windows open all night, to hear the water and the sailboats, without having giant mosquitoes and moths coming in to stalk us.  We only had screens installed into the sash (typical open up and down) windows; but our next goal is to have screens put in the office.  Of course, those ones will need to be hinged so they will be a bit more complicated; but I think it will be worth it in the end.

Anyway, that's all I have going on tonight - I just wanted to pop in before the craziness of the weekend sucked me in and spat me out on Monday with no blog posts to show for it...

Bad Habit

I wanted to blog a couple of days ago about something and I didn't...  I didn't because I told myself that I didn't have enough news or photos for a "real" blog post.  I have gotten myself into the mindset that a blog entry has to be very very long with at least 4 bajillion (yes, it's a real word - look it up) photos to match.

So, I need to get myself out of this habit.  I will begin by now posting the post that I wanted to post the other day- Ha!

So, Monday morning I had an absolutely incredible dream about my Dad.  I have dreams about my parents all the time; but, in those dreams, they are more like ideas or shadows.  Hard to grab on to and even harder to hold on to long enough to try to see their faces in the dreams.  Not this one....  I dreamed we were having some sort of family reunion.  My Uncle Ray was there rocking a fantastic pin striped suit.  My Dad showed up and the two of them started talking about clothes (in the dream, my Dad was claiming to have lost weight and wanted to buy new clothes - even though he looked the same to me) and where to buy them - especially the suit which my Dad was quite impressed with.  I remember being conscious enough to realise that I could see Dad's face and that it really felt like he was there.  At this point, I didn't feel like a player in the dream; but I was more than content to sit and watch - this was the most I had seen of my Dad's face in a dream for years!

Then my Dad saw me.  His face lit up like someone turned a spotlight on behind it.  He rushed over to me and started talking a mile a minute.  At one point he grabbed my hands and held them.  I just remember everything slowing down - I couldn't even pay attention to what he was saying because I couldn't stop looking at his face.  He was laughing and making all those little facial expressions that you are afraid you will forget as time slips by. I remember reaching up and putting my hand on his face - I could smell his shaving soap and feel his stubble.  I was, in that moment, a little kid again; but somehow not.

And then I woke up - just like that....

It was weird - I woke up and Joe had already left for work.  He never leaves without waking me up to say goodbye and kiss me. I called him to make sure everything was ok and he told me that he hadn't woke me because I seemed to be having such a good sleep.  I'm so glad he decided to let me sleep that morning...

If my Dad were alive, it would be his 77th birthday tomorrow.  I would probably be buying him a nice pair of courderouy pants.  Except, I think what he really would have wanted was a pin striped suit...

Write Tonight?

I am in the midst of dealing with our first ever "shaped" internet usage!  "Shaped" is a nice Aussie term for "you have used to much internets and now you must be punished!"  So, we have a plan for 100MB a month (yes, I know this is an extreme amount; but we download a lot so don't judge) and it is at lightning fast (I'm not being sarcastic - it really is crazy fast) broad band speed.  Once we go over our 100MB we get throttled back to a "slightly faster then dial-up" speed.

What that means....  Well, for one thing, it means that I downloaded too many movies the other day.  Also, this means that there will be no video-Skyping tomorrow for our Skype date with Joe's parents.  That is a bummer.  The only positive here is that our usage resets in about 24 hours - so, we only have to live with a pre-historic internet connection for another day.

Jennifer - I am dying to watch your You-Tube videos... I can get to "this is the part of the classroom" and then it stops loading and I have to give up.  I swear I will watch them Sunday night.

Anyway...  last Sunday (well, really two Sundays ago) - the day after the crazy rain, was a momentous day because it was my grandfather's 91st birthday.  Well, technically, his birthday was Saturday in the States; but I got to call him on Sunday morning our time and talk to him after his birthday dinner.  I've blogged about him before in this post about his time in Perth/Freemantle so you can go there and read up on the back story if you would like.  I feel so connected to him here in Australia and I think about him all the time.  It's incredible to me that I lived my whole life up to this point thinking that no one in my family had ever been to Australia.  Now knowing that he was here before me gives me this feeling of calm - like he checked it out for me to make sure it was ok for me to come.  I was so lucky to get married in Florida on the beach two years ago and I was even more lucky to have him there to walk me down the aisle.  This is my favourite picture of us from the wedding - I think I look a little like my mom in it which makes it perfect. 

So, I just want to say - Happy Birthday Coach!  I'm so glad I got to share in your day a little even though I am so far away.  Also, thanks for sharing in this wonderful adventure we are having - I promise, I'll make it to Freemantle while we are here and take lots of pictures for you!

Sunday was also the wedding day of fellow blogger C. where she married her Partner-in-Crime in a lovely ceremony overlooking the harbour.  It was an unfortunately rainy morning; but they made the best of it and managed to make the whole umbrella thing work.  Also, I've seen the "sneak peak" photos and I can say that wedding pictures involving umbrellas are super-dreamy.  I can't wait to see the rest when they are done because I think that they are going to be gorgeous.  There was a nice BBQ after at the local sailing club - it was very intimate, the food was great and there was plenty of wine.  It was a wonderful morning and it was an absolute privilege to have been invited and to have gotten to share in such a great occasion.

The week that followed was uneventful. I literally can't remember a single thing that went on during the week. I'm sure I did a ton of laundry - I made some yummy dinners - I walked to the shops a few times.  Actually, scratch all that - I just opened my batch of photos from that week and I beginning to remember more as I look through them.  Ha, who needs a photographic memory when you can just take pictures of everything you do and store them on your computer?  I'm kidding - well, sort-of... 
I have several pictures of beautiful Aussie scenery - the clouds, the flowers etc.  I still just can't get over how amazingly beautiful everything is here.  I really had to rely on the scenery and the beauty here this past week as I really struggled to be a "stranger in a strange land".  People here really seem to speak their mind about America - they do it a lot and mostly they do it in "joke" form.  They joke about the tired old stereotypes that they get from the American tv and movies that are consumed en masse here.  Usually the joking doesn't bother me very much; but there just seemed to be a lot this particular week. The worst part about it is that you can't respond to the joking without looking like a spoil sport with no sense of humor. 
So, on the days when I was so mad that I just wanted to fly back to the States to be around Americans that aren't egotistical crazies who eat at McDonald's every night (let me just interject that I am not saying Aussies are this way - I am just saying that this seems to be how many of them perceive Americans) , I had to use the scenery to pull myself out of it.  Also, a couple glasses of wine in the evenings are never remiss when you are in a bad mood!

*editing to add that at midnight the internet completely died and so here I am the next morning, praising Blogger's auto save function (ha, that's totally going to get Googled) because without it, this might be a very different (and much more angry) post.

A good deal of the week was spent trying to get ready for Halloween - We decided to have a Halloween carnival at work complete with Bobbing for Apples and also Donut on a String (which I shamelessly stole from Arvin's Halloween festivities last year).  Much fun was had by all; but it was a lot of wok and a lot of stress.  By Friday afternoon when I was setting everything up, I was pretty much ready to be done with everything.  With Halloween, with the people, with being new and not knowing what to do/where to go/where to buy things etc...  After the carnival, Joe was nice enough to take me out to a nice dinner and then, after we had had sometime to decompress, we met up with the work colleagues at a hotel (which is a bar) and continued the night.

Saturday was a very very quiet day - Joe and I weren't feeling too well after being out too late the night before.  We mostly just putzed around the house, watched a movie or two and vegged. 

Sunday was a Halloween party that we were invited to by a coworker. It was "fancy dress", which mean costumes here; but not everyone ended up dressing up.  I am slightly amazed to say that I dressed up as Bride of Frankenstein, complete with fright wig, fake eyelashes, white skin, stitches on the face and the whole bit and I have not one single picture of this to show you. Not a single picture....

I also have to add here that it has been raining constantly (ok, that may be a slight exaggeration); but it has been reminding me of winter here more than spring.  I am really ready for some blindingly hot sunshine.  I think that may help improve everything around here.

And that is all....