I am so excited that today is September first! I love New Year’s day because I establish new goals for the year. The first of each month is a miniature reboot of New Year’s goals.
This month I want to concentrate on just a couple of areas.
Back to School My daughter starts her senior year of high school on Wednesday. She is excited and nervous at the same time. She’s thrilled that she’ll be able to hang out with her friends again. But she’s nervous because this is the start of the end of her high school experience.
My goal is to help make this back to school transition as easy as possible. This afternoon we’ll visit a salon to get her all prettied for the first day of school. A new haircut is definitely a confidence booster!
Smart Girl Edits I am in the process of preparing a proposal and quote for several potential clients. If either of them signs a contract with me, I’ll be busy this month working toward their deadlines.
If neither client signs a contract with me, I want to continue developing connections on LinkedIn. I also want to resume one of my business classes so that I can refine my business niche and make a plan for the rest of this year.
Travel My third and final focus this month is my Prince Edward Island trip! Last month, I posted several goals I want to complete in preparation for my vacation. I have selected and purchased a book to read on my flight. I have also selected my knitting pattern but still need to go yarn shopping. I will post about these things later in more detail.
Here’s to a productive and fun September! What are your September goals?
Next month I am traveling to Prince Edward Island, Canada, and I am so excited! My last getaway was in March, a two day women’s church retreat in Fall City, WA. For this trip, I’ll be gone for an entire week!
This week, I’ve been working on a to-do list specifically for my trip. This list is more of an “I hope I can get all this done” list rather than a list based in reality. But I’m still going to see what I can get done. Maybe I should just call it a wish list.
Wish list item #1 – a haircut
I tend to cut a lot of inches off my hair and then not get another haircut for years. I cut about 12 inches off around Valentine’s Day 2018 and have not gotten a haircut since. My hair is now almost down to my elbows and looks rather scraggly. I hope to take a lot of pictures on my trip and hope to actually be in some of those photos. I want to feel more confident in my photos and a haircut would go a long way toward that confidence.
Wish list item #2 – a new knitting project
My current knitting project, a cowl, is almost complete! (Side note – the pattern designer is really nice and answered several of my questions about her pattern). I really hope to take a new knitting project on my trip, knowing full well that I may be overwhelmed by everything else going on and may not actually knit. On the other hand, I did knit in both Taiwan and China, so…
For my new knitting project, I am looking for a pattern that reminds me of autumn. We are headed to Canada at a time when the leaves should be changing colors and I want to knit something that reflects that season change. I’m not sure if I want to incorporate falling leaves in my pattern or just knit in fall colors. If you have a pattern suggestion, please let me know!
Wish list item #3 – a new book
I definitely need a new book to read while waiting for my flight and while relaxing in the evenings. My husband suggested that I take my e-reader but I want a book I can hold in my hands. I have no idea what specific book I’m looking for, but I have a few ideas. I’m hoping for a lighter read, but not complete brain candy. Good character development. Again, something that reminds me of autumn. A cozy book, heartfelt. I’m open to suggestions!
Wish list item #4 – assemble a trip itinerary
Neither myself or my best friend want to be locked into specific activities on specific days. However, we have already made Airbnb reservations in different towns along our route. Between now and our date of departure, I want to compile a list of places to see, things to do, and food to eat in each of the cities we’ll be visiting. Of course, my number one priority is going to be a list of coffee houses to try! This list will just give us options to choose from based on how we’re feeling that day. I think a list of options will be beneficial so we aren’t completely aimless, but both of us will be approaching the list as “suggestions” rather than “requirements.” If we spot something along the way, I want the freedom to say, “Hey, let’s go check that out!”
I am well aware that my current reality may not allow me to accomplish every item on this list. I don’t have a hair stylist and will have to find one. I may not own the right knitting needles for my project and will have to buy those in addition to yarn. Each item on this list requires multiple steps and the next month already looks quite busy.
In the next month, my daughter is starting her senior year in high school. Before school starts, we need to stock up on homework supplies, shop for school clothes, get a haircut for her, and visit her school for the “taking care of business” day.
I also have to get my daughter’s last name changed with the school system (we just completed her WA state readoption!), make an appointment for senior photos, and possibly visit the doctor for a sports clearance.
Our car is due for some transmission work. I’m currently in a back and forth discussion with the State of Arizona over previous tax years. Plus, I’m trying to get my editing business off the ground!
Life is busy. I will have to prioritize what gets done and then just do my best.
It has been a roller coaster week. I’m so glad that the Sabbath is almost here!
1 – We flew down to Phoenix for my husband’s annual company holiday party. It was great to see some of the coworkers and to see the boss face to face. Hubby is very blessed to have his boss. He’s a great boss but he has also provided a personal reference letter for our adoption and has been fully supportive of the adoption, giving time off as needed for extra doctor appointments, seeing the notary, etc.
2 – While in Phoenix, I was able to spend two days with my mom. We had fun playing games and hanging out. My mom and I keep in contact frequently via text and phone but it was nice to see her in person! This trip is probably our last before we travel to Taiwan sometime in 2014.
3 – I visited an eye specialist this week, as my optometrist found a concerning growth on my eye. She referred me to the specialist, who diagnosed it as a Salzman’s nodule. He said that surgery might be an option in the future but for now we have nothing to worry about and can just monitor it. I need to make sure to visit my optometrist regularly so that she can keep an eye on it, no pun intended.
4 – We had a flurry of emails and phone calls between our social worker, our agency, and USCIS. Apparently, even though we read it twice, we missed a typo on the first page of our home study. According to our home study, my husband is actually two years older than his real age! Oops. We’re grateful the mistake was caught now instead of by a Taiwan judge, but it held up our USCIS application. According to the last update call, we should be receiving the final decision in the mail sometime next week.
5 – In addition to the eye specialist, we also visited a regular M.D. this week to fill out our medical clearances. After a long doctor’s visit and two blood draws, we were deemed healthy enough to adopt. The doctor asked that I type up the form for him so that it wouldn’t be rejected due to illegible handwriting. I dropped off the forms this afternoon and he’s going to sign and notarize them this weekend.
6 – Phew. No wonder my husband ended up sick. It was a stressful week! Not all bad stress, but stressful. Now he’s out with a cold and fever and I’m praying that I don’t get sick as well. I hope he feels better soon!
Next week is Christmas and I pray we receive our completed medical clearances and USCIS approval before Tuesday afternoon. That would be a great Christmas present!
I have returned from my trip to Wyoming. Overall, it was a good trip. I’m so glad I got to see my grandparents. My grandfather is 84 and isn’t doing very well. We have plans to see him next July for a family reunion but thought it might be wise to make this trip Just In Case.
Buffalo Snow! Grandma playing Angry Birds on my tablet Josh trying to get Grandpa to try a temporary tattoo Three generations of boys Grandpa, Josh, and I Josh and I with the grandparents
In addition to visiting with my grandparents, I was also able to see an old friend of mine. I hadn’t seen her since my wedding six years ago. It was nice to be able to chat face to face! Unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures of the two of us.
Hopefully we’ll all be together again next July. If not, at least we were all able to spend some time together this Thanksgiving. For that, I am thankful.
I’m not exactly happy about it, but I’ve decided to skip my Bible reading today. The schedule allows for two miss days but I haven’t missed anything thus far. I’m at my brother’s house until tomorrow and there is no quiet here. The house has been full of people all day, sometimes up to 30 at a time.
My dad, his friend, and myself went to church this morning. I’ve been begging to attend church here each time we visit, but I’ve never been able to get anyone to take me. Thankfully, my dad decided that we would go this morning. The church service was really nice. The church is small, as this is a tiny military town. The people were very friendly and I was happy to spend an hour worshiping God in the middle of this crazy day.
I’m really glad to spend time with my brother, but I miss my husband. I love the life we have together and I like the routines, our time together, and my own bed! Sometimes I feel silly missing him so much when I’m rarely away from home and usually only for a weekend at a time. But we’ve been married only four years and I still want to spend every single day by his side.
I didn’t mean to disappear for over a week. Last Tuesday, we were notified of a family emergency. With less than two hours notice, I was on my way to Texas. After a harrowing 22 hour drive (a good portion in a snowstorm with almost 0 visibility) we arrived in Dallas.
Christmas did not go as planned. I find this especially ironic because I was struggling just over a week ago with plans with my hubby that had fallen through. Hubby and I had guests visit over Christmas, an old college friend and also my sister-in-law. We were eagerly anticipating their visit but I had to leave 12 hours after our first guest had arrived. I never even saw my SIL. Oops.
I arrived home late yesterday afternoon. Our friend left early this morning. At least I got to see him before he left. Hopefully we’ll be visiting my SIL this spring to make up for my missing her visit.
Now I feel like I’ve fallen so far behind. I missed a week of cleaning. I have tons of laundry to wash. I was planning a couple of blog posts for the holiday season but never wrote them. Hubby and I haven’t finalized plans for New Years. Because of the emergency, I missed my weekly call with my grandparents (it totally slipped my mind).
God protected myself, my brother, and his wife on our long drive to and from Dallas. My father is doing better and hopefully will not have another trip to the ER. Hubby had a good visit with his friend and sister while I was gone. I have much to be thankful for, even though things did not go according to my plan. Funny how that works.
This two week visit with my brother has deviated vastly from our intended plans. After he returned from deployment, Josh was assigned slightly shorter than normal work days. He hasn’t had a day off since he returned from Iraq. Josh working was the only planned, expected part of this trip.
Monday through Thursday of last week, we had no internet access in the apartment. I brought my laptop with me so that I could complete my contract work and had told my employer that I would be available starting Tuesday. Unfortunately, we were missing a modem and it took a couple days for the apartment to provide one (we’re staying in two executive suites, since my brother’s two bedroom apartment wasn’t ready yet).
My mom was sick on Tuesday last week with a 24 hour stomach bug. My niece was sick on Wednesday. By Thursday night, since no one else had come down with it, we thought it might have run it’s course. Wrong! I got sick very early Friday morning and it lasted through Sabbath morning. I was running a fever and had typical stomach bug problems. Not fun whatsoever. Due to being sick, I missed out on visiting the local church. That was also a bummer.
Yesterday, I was feeling like my normal self and was finally able to finish a contract assignment. I am genuinely surprised I haven’t been fired yet, as I missed an unplanned week in December (snowed-in in Michigan) and last week due to no internet and being sick.
It looks like things are slowing down now. Last Wednesday, I was lucky enough to see my hubby for a few hours, as we had to take my niece back to Phoenix. I’m really looking forward to going home this Wednesday so we can be together again. It’s been almost three and a half years, but I don’t like being apart from him. Being away from him, with unscheduled days, on someone else’s timetable, and staying in an unfamiliar home or hotel, makes me even more thankful for my hubby and the life we have together.
This week, I’m planning on completing some additional contract assignments, finish reading a couple books, packing my stuff, and returning home to my hubby! I’m excited to settle back into being a homemaker. I love spending time with my biological family, but there really is no place like home.
I have internet now!! I am so excited. I’ve missed four days of work this week due to ongoing internet issues at this apartment. Quick update…
My brother flew in Monday afternoon, safe and sound. He’s been working part time this week and our family has been spending the rest of the hours together. My dad, mom, and I are here all week. My niece was here earlier this week for a few days but had to go home last night. I’ll be here with my brother until sometime next week.
And I have internet now! The furnished apartment we’re renting was missing a modem and it took a couple days to get one delivered. But I have internet now! (Can you tell I’m excited?) Now I can get back to helping my hubby job search plus keep up with my contract job.
I’m back in town for a quick visit! I was blessed by catching an earlier flight yesterday so I landed around 4:00PM. I’ve spent the day catching up on sleep, doing laundry, and packing for tomorrow’s departure. Hubby and I leave for the airport at 5AM.
Here’s one quick teaser picture from my trip. We were all visiting my grandpa for his 84th birthday. The picture is Grandpa and all his grandkids, except for my brother still stationed in Iraq.
Top (left to right) – Jessi, myself, Grandpa, Derrick Bottom (left to right) – Nevin, Tiffany