Sunday, July 28, 2013

Resolution Sunday: Kenya

Yesterday Marty and I went to a new friend of his house for dinner. Marty knew I would be happy to go because this new friend is Kenyan, and we know how I loved Kenya. I thought I was going for a fifth birthday party with hot dogs and mac and cheese but instead got a full on Kenyan feast.

The crazy amount of kids free flowin through the house, several women cooking a feast that easily could have fed one hundred, and the smells of the spices was just a total reminder of how much I loved my time in Kenya.
As a note of cultural practice, the Americans were the only ones of about thirty people to bring something to contribute. This, I learned in Kenya, isn't a common practice there. You always share what you have with whoever is there and know that the same will be shown when you are out. The hospitality is overwhelming, you are instantly part of the family.

I had a blast talking with a few Kenyan women who are living in Durham and have created a new community there. They, of course, were impressed I had been there and that I knew that Kenya wasn't one 'large jungle'. It was a nice reminder of why I am in a globally minded career and that I am so thankful for my time both in Kenya and here in the states working towards bettering our global community. How easy it is to forget that we all have so much in common!

The food was just beyond delicious. Marty said to me apologetically at the end of the night that it was the best meal he had had in months (I wasn't offended). I mean, check this out! Too bad we just met these lovely people and are on our way out. Y U M.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Big Deal!

One month from today I will be living in Seattle. Like, living there. Not vacationing. Living. Here.

When we moved to North Carolina, I was 23. I had graduated from college a year earlier and had spent a year traveling around the world, waiting for Marty to finish school. In a phone call to Tanzania, Marty said "how does North Carolina sound?" and the next thing I knew my Camry was packed and we were on the road somewhere in the cornfields of Nowhere, Nebraska headed east.

At the time I thought to myself, I can do this whole living across the country from my fam thang. This whole new place thang. This totally different than where I grew up thang. Afterall, my friends from high school had gone to school way far away when we were much younger. So I could too. Ain't no thang.

Once we landed in North Carolina, where it was hot and muggy, where I couldn't understand the accents around me, where I didn't yet have a taste for sweet tea and slow paced everything,  and where my apartment walls were (are) painted the color of band-aids, it turned out I was wrong.

It took about 48 hours before I was realized that this was, indeed, a big thang.

Turns out that the transition was a lot harder than I expected, but now I am so glad to have had this chapter and really am proud of what we have done here.

One month!

(Sidebar: The original title of this post was 'big thang' but, well, you know.)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Monday Sidebar!

Funny Seasonal Ecard: The best thing about a heat wave is constantly having the illusion you're getting exercise.

Hey, you need some quick laughs for Monday morning? Or some feel good tingles?

How about this video, a little bit of serious funny. And how well is John Oliver doing, by the way?

Or this one with a funny experiment?

These funny graphs.

Have you seen this website? What a cool way to show diversity.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Resolution Sunday: Grad School Friends

This week, I am thankful for two girls in particular who are great friends of Marty's from school, and then I co-opted them as great friends of mine (wa ha ha). Kate and Becky have been with us through this whole grad school thing and have been great support for me and for Marty.

Plus, bright minded women in science are already high in my book.

I am thankful that Marty had a great group of friends in lab every day and that they were able to understand some things I couldn't about his daily life. They are also awesome chicas and were my first girlfriends here in NC. We are all about to go our separate ways and its a bit (very) bittersweet.

Cheers to you, ladies! 

Friday, July 19, 2013

High Five Us!

Last Thursday we celebrated our fourth anniversary. This year, among other things, we adapted the habit of high-fiving each other to remind us we are on the same team and to celebrate all these small little things that we manage to accomplish each and every day (Let's order chinese! This new recipe is delish! We nailed that awkward double date! You look hawt in that new shirt! The dishwasher is unloaded!).

I think I have hinted at this, but this year was a bit hard. It was trying, it was complicated, and it was pretty exhausting. We entered some dark waters and emerged, I think, a little better for it.

There was stress about next steps, stress about doctoral dissertations, stress about physical problems which left us immobile. There was uncertainty and inability about how to communicate about each of these things.We were swept up and dropped unkindly into new territory.

This year exhausted, and then extended, my repertoire of marital bliss know-how.

(And all those married longer than us out there laugh and say you ain't seen nothin yet kid).

And it wasn't all bad, we are well versed in comical relief and loose with applying the needed night out. Most importantly, we didn't give up and everything is looking up. Really all this just proves how fortunate I am to have the right person on the other end of the dinner table. Marty and I are a team. We are learning to take the shots as they come, to communicate honestly about what we need and where we are at, and to give each other high fives at the small victories.

There is truly no other person that I would rather be figuring this thing out with. So to celebrate we went to the only place we thought suited our wild year - the zoo.

So cheers to us, and here's to year five!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Resolution Sunday: High school friends

Last week a bunch of my high school friends had a bit of a 10 year reunion party. I am going to blog more about this later this week but let's just say I had an extraordinary group of friends that I grew up with and went to high school with. 

Love these crazy kids.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Weekend Reading


Just got back from a week in Seattle, getting ready for our move.
I am catching up on  my reading this weekend. Here's a sampling.
Did you hear about Jenny McCarthy hosting the view? Ugh.

A little comic strip about us millennials.

And another with some good advice.

Speaking of millennials, these are right on, and pretty funny.

A little inspiration.

I have mixed feelings about leaving North Carolina. Seems like its falling to pieces right now though.

Speaking of life in the south, I have seen the weight and nutrition issue in a whole new way here, and how it plays into culture. What do you think about this solution?

Reading this blog about mamas in the Congo. Sometimes I wish I could do that, raise a brood in a crazy far-off land (then I remember raspberries and I forget it.)

Happy Birthday Malala!

--- Have a fabulous weeekend ----