Monday, June 30, 2008

Back to Life

Well, it was back to an official day today... after I woke up at 11am of course. :)

The panic set in of a new baby in less than 30 days set in as well. I decided I need to treat my life as a job. While working in California I managed tons of projects, meetings, people, and activities... but I did it all with a process and schedule, and writing things out. :) I just need a little schedule that's all. Joanie, my old boss, would be so proud. I just need some monthly meetings to discuss my progress and a little database to input daily homework completion and what needs cleaned next. I'm sure a pivot table or two wouldn't hurt. :) (I do have an excel file which categorizes money spent on each vacation... per day) :)

So - that was my plan this morning; to organize life into a strict schedule - BUT on the way to the grocery store via the good ole' bus we were distracted by a big playland near the store and a non-functioning ATM machine. We ended up with fish sticks and macaroni and cheese for dinner and a late bedtime of 9:45. We did get "mommy school" in though. My children will be malnourished and tired but they'll know about exponents and where the five major oceans of the world are.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Lots to read!

Go get a drink and a pillow for your chair. I wrote alot today... I had to catch up. Now I just need pictures... you people are demanding.

Oh - You'll have to start backwards or else the trip will be in reverse. So scroll on down to California for the start of the trip, then comes Canada, then London, then Denmark. :)



Okay. All caught up. :) We are back in Denmark.

I missed our house and our things and my big comfy bed and my blankey and pillows. I was happy to see those puny little milk cartons and have a drink with handmade ice. I'll let you all know when the milk cartons annoy me again and I'm tired of filling ice cube trays three times a day.

Kids are happy and on an okay time schedule... Canada and London helped ease the transition with time. All the toys are new to Scotty again so he's played with everything today. The girls and I sorted through all their new clothes and shoes and books. Michaela has finished two books already which I'm not happy about. :) Her new books aren't going to last. My new plan is to find a book seller on line with cheap international shipping rates.

I'm now realizing I need a crib as well as a spot to put it. I think I'll put Sierra with Scotty since his room is much bigger. I've changed my mind 100 times. There is always the computer/library room downstairs but I can't bring myself to have to relocate all that stuff though. I can't put the crib in my room, I'll never sleep - I'll wake up to every sound she makes... I know myself. :)

I made my first to-do list today. I now have many things I have to get done which always amazes me since I don't officially have a job. : ) ...and back to cooking dinner. o h b o y



Most exciting thing: Scotty went Pee-Pee in the Potty!!!!

The night before we left London Scotty and I were having a long discussion about pee-pee and poo-poo while he took a bath. A few minutes after he got out of the bath he announced he had to "go pee-pee in potty". I wasn't too confident it would work out but figured I should go along... so we took off his diaper and I stood him on a stack of towels and he stood there for a second and then went pee pee in the potty!!! It was a super big deal! I was so excited! Nevermind it was 10:00 at night -we rushed down to the lobby to buy candy!!! We all had to get dressed and of course Scotty had to go pee-pee in the potty one more time. We all five went downstairs, bought a big bag of peanut m&ms, and then went to celebrate with ice cream at the hotel restaruant. We were all singing "pee-pee in the potty" and the kids were dancing. This of course, wasn't the most responsible thing I as a parent should have done becuase little Scotty was up "celebrating" until midnight with all those peanut m&m's and chocolate ice cream in his little body.

The next morning he wanted to go pee-pee in the potty again (perhaps to instigate another party complete with singing, dancing, candy, and ice cream!) but we were flying home so I said we'd wait until we got home to the M-house and his little potty. Sorry, I'm not up to a first day of potty training while traveling from London to Copenhagen to Aarhus. :)

So now that we are home and unpacked and life is as normal as it going to get we will see how pee-pee in the potty goes for a while. :) I found his big boy underwear and I'm going to decorate his potty with arrows (which he loves)!

Other than that little event London was exciting too. I thought it was fun I could understand people and read the free newspapers they hand out. Just these little things made me happy because I knew my English was shortlived. The underground tube was great fun too. (...not called a subway. We followed a sign for the "subway" and it was a walkway under the street to the other side of the street.) I liked all the tube lines going everywhere and we only got confused once. We didn't really get lost at all and since I'm a professional bus rider we managed the red doubled decker buses as well.

Rush hour on the underground wasn't exactly fun... it was amusing after we escaped the madness and fought our way aboveground. We were only halfway through our trip but I couldn't take it anymore. It was hot, mashed crowded, airless, stinky... I'm big and pregnant and highly moody so it wasn't the place for me. The girls were not excited about their heads being at "butt-level" either. ;) We shoved our way out, found a bench, and enjoyed fresh air for a while... It was an experience though. I can't believe people do that every day. I rather commute in traffic, in my own car, in my own space, without 85 people trying (and being successful) to shove their way into a space designed to hold 32.

Ouuuhhh - when Londoners/British people get on the bus... they form a SINGLE FILE LINE along the curb. No little old ladies shoving past my two year old to get on the bus first. :)

So. Let's see what did we do? We:
- Rode the London Eye. (big ferris wheel thing)
- Saw Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, and all the other building and churches you are supposed to see.
- Toured the London Tower (a giant castle where people were killed every inhumane way possible many years ago) :)
- Walked across the London Bridge. - It didn't even fall down. (HA. Get it. Like the song??)
- Went to the British muesuem and saw lots of cool things: Rosetta stone, Mummies, Old things dug from the dirt, and more...
- Learned the British Libaray doesn't have a children's section and No, they won't let you look at the Rare Books "just for fun".
- Portobello Road. from Bedknobs and Broomsticks.
- We also went to Harrods shopping store and everywhere else mUm told me to go. :)

We ate yummy ice cream every day. It was so rich Scotty never finished one. :)

I liked the money better than kronners. A pound coin is kinda big and heavy - it feels like it's worth something ($2) On the other hand, a 20 kronner coin ($4) doesn't feel like much. I think pence are cute too. It was crazy expensive though. A happy meal on the menu read 4.00 but then you realize it's pounds, not dollars - so multiply that by two! At least I feel better about Denmark prices now. I rather divide by 5 than multiply by 2. So I just pretended a pound equals a dollar and went about my day.

I don't really feel like getting into it, but we missed our flight to Copenhagen because we thought we left at three instead of noon. Oops. We had to pay 200 pounds... (just think dollars and it's not that bad) for them to rebook us on a later flight and then ended up having difficulties in Copenhagen when we tried to board the plane to Aarhus. We made it home along with our 11 suitcases :) ...and I again vow never to bring that many suitcases, BUT we had to bring all new baby things back. I had zero baby items here - it was all put in storage before we left and nothing was shipped in the container weeks before we left the States. So baby stuff filled 4 entire suitcases and my little girl will be clothed for the next year. So there - not my fault... its hers. (Guess we should start thinking of names huh?)


Small little note: Technically we are back in Denmark.... BUT I have to go in order to tell about the rest of our trip or I'll confuse myself. I didn't write as we went along because I had food to eat and things to buy. :)

Okay. After California we took a direct flight to Toronto, Canada on Father's Day weekend. The journey was uneventful - OH :) except for the "just-kidding-landing" in Toronto. The pilot almost landed and then decided we were too close to the plane ahead of us so we ZOOMED back up. It might as well been a Rocket Launch straight up into the sky, and for a few minutes we all just wondered if we were going to hit something. :o Eventually the pilot told us what happened and 15 minutes later we landed for reals. :)

The first couple nights we stayed with his sister had a big, yummy dinner with all the family at her house. On Father's Day we went to Niagara Falls. The girls didn't really remember it since the last time we went was a few years ago. This time we rode on the Maid of the Mist boat which was hilarious. It was so windy and wet - the girls thought it was funny. Scotty didn't like his blue "raincoat/plastic garbage bag" or the gusts of windy mist in our faces, but he laughed about it afterwards. Then we drove through a big thunder storm to spend the rest of our time at Paul's parents cottage in Bracebridge.

Bracebridge is where people from the city go on vacation and his parents get to live there! It's a cute little town and they have a fun house with a beach, all kinds of boats, ski-dos, and every other toy imaginable. It's even more perfect because it's not actually "on" the lake, it's on a little... river? It's like they live on a culdasack made of water - no through traffic. One way leads to an enclosed bay, which, through a path leads out to the busier big lake part; and the other way leads to a dead end all visible to me sitting in a chair on the big enclosed deck. It's perfect!

Lots of animals too... mosquitoes included :) We saw deer walking past the house nearly everyday! We saw "Peanut" the raccoon and "Chippy" the chipmunk and fed the ducks and their babies in the morning. We even had a birthday party for the kids since Gramma and Papa miss seeing them on their birthdays.

Every time we leave there I spend at least a week trying to figure out a plan of how Paul and I can get a place like that so my grandkids can come and stay for weeks at a time. I don't think it would get any better than that. We even tried to switch our tickets to skip London and stay longer, but it didn't work out. So off we were to London...

Saturday, June 7, 2008


It's getting warmer and we are getting tan/sunburnt again. : ) Let's see... what have we done so far...

- We went to Sacramento for Pauls' immigration appointment so he could get a stamp in his passport so he can leave the US with a chance of coming back.
- We visted my Grandma and Uncle Bruce and Aunt Ingrid and played with the dogs. We miss Sophie lots, but I'm confident she is one of the happiest dogs on earth now - espcially with her little sidekick Buddy.
- We spent a day at the lakehouse playing on the boat and swimming. Michaela and Happy had a crash on the inner tube but they have since recovered. :) However, my brother Kevin is still feeling the soreness from his crash. :) I, on the other hand, was happy to have the excuse of my big belly to keep me out of the freezing cold water.
- We've continued to shop and I am now need to go shopping for a larger suitcase. :) Yesterday I added cake mix, pancake syrup, baco-bits, kettle corn, and sweetened condensed milk to our pile of things. I've never paid attention to the weight of food before - this stuff is HEAVY!! I'm going to have to start putting things back. My critera is now, "what will make me the happiest for the longest"; Pancake syrup and baco-bits will last for months, but kettle corn is a one-time joy. Sad... but we all have to make sacrafices. :(

My grandparents and Kevin and Jessica (my brother and his wife) are leaving on Monday to head back to Utah.... so this weekend we are having a big party and everyone from Sacramento is headed down here today and then tomorrow we will take up an entire row at church. :)

Between the five cameras we have 1000+ pictures probably so I'll sort through and put some up.

I think I'm off for a walk to Taco Bell for a Bean Burrito with no onions and sour cream. Then maybe I should make some kettle corn. I haven't weighed myself yet.


Monday, June 2, 2008

YAY for the USA!

:) We finally made it! Well, we made it about a week ago, but I finally logged on here to write since my wonderful friends in Denmark are wondering what we are doing... I actually miss Denmark and I never thought I'd say those words!

Our final stop on our long journey to America was in Portland, Oregon where Paul had to worked for a few days in his old office there. We got our good ole' minivan out of storage and eventually drove down to California (10 hours) to my parents house and we've been enjoying the California weather since then. The whole trip was fairly uneventful... Nothing/Nobody was lost along the way. A cute little meat/fruit-sniffing dog in customs almost got us in trouble for "smuggling" in some German food! :) I didn't think that sniffy dog was so cute afterwards... AND I didn't even figure out until later what they were looking for... but didn't find. So don't worry Ingrid, your spaghetti dinners and goulash mix are on their way!

We have filled up most of our empty suitcases for our return trip and I'm now becoming scared they are too heavy, especially with the new luggage rules, but more so with our plans to visit London on the way home. London with 10 checked suitcases filled with Macaroni and Cheese and Parmesan Cheese doesn't sound even a little enjoyable. ... until you have to carry four jars of peanut butter you really don't realize how heavy that stuff is!

We've been buying lots of baby things too - even an exersaucer for her to sit and play in since I hear they are nowhere to be found in Europe. Our plan is too leave it in the box and check it as luggage, but first I will open that box and shove that sucker full of granola bars and paper cupcake holders. We may even find a travel swing that we can just carry on. I hope the London airport can store our luggage... UGH.

So our first week has been spent shopping and eating at all the fast food places I thought I missed. Turns out I didn't miss them, I just wanted them since I couldn't have them. Truth is I enjoy the Burger King at Park Alle near the Aarhus train staion while waiting for our next bus home. However, Scotty is a super fan of Taco Bell rice... and I do enjoy eating ice cream again. I think my girlish figure will be ruined when I get back. Good thing I have this whole pregnancy thing to blame my big bum on.

Well, I'm off... more shopping to do and for some reason I REALLY want a cheeseburger from In-N-Out Burger! Yum... My grandparents from Utah and my older little brother and his wife will be arriving tomorrow so that will be more fun!



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