Archive for » August, 2011 «

A trip home.

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For a while there I was going through a bit of a rough patch. You know…the kind of rough patch where you aren’t really depressed because life is good and you have no actual legit reason to be sad….but you are still strangely melancholy? It’s no fun. Living in a foreign country was starting to wear me down, jobless housewifery was getting really old, and creative juices just weren’t flowing. But, I discovered, it was nothing a little Las Vegas couldn’t cure!
(No…gambling IS NOT the answer to life’s problems, but seeing your family and best friends again is :) )
Some of the highlights from the 3 weeks at home:
  • Just hanging out and chilling with my family again.
  • Reuniting with Julie after her 18 month mission in Uruguay for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
  • Finally getting the trio (Me, Julie, Jessica) back together after WAY too long.
  • Hosting a Harry Potter party for the midnight premier of Deathly Hallows Part II.
  • Taking the lil bro up to Utah to go on a LDS Church History Trip (oh the memories of when I went on the same trip in 2005 :) )
  • Officially meeting my brother-in-law, Brian, for the first time and enjoying time with the in-laws again.
  • Going crazy with the Utah gang when they came down to hang out in Vegas.
  • EATING MEXICAN FOOD AGAIN!! And also lots of other delicious things.
  • Finalizing all the paperwork for bringing the parrot back to Norway. (Ok…not really a highlight. More of a really stressful experience. More on that in a future post)
  • Wearing shorts and not even packing a sweatshirt.
Lesson learned: No matter how much of an adventure you are having, sometimes you really just need to go back to your roots and reset and recharge and that’s OK (<– a bit of Motherly wisdom right there)
So now life is back to its proper order and the future is once again bright.
Thanks Las Vegas :)
Oberammergau x 3

Chelsea: “Chris, tell me something about your 3 work trips to Oberammergau, Germany so far for the blog.”

Chris: “It’s really small.”

Chelsea: “Mmm…how about something more detailed.”

Chris: “It’s quaint.”

Chelsea: “Annnd….?”

Chris: “Annnd, it’s beautiful? The food at the Maxbrau is good.”

Chelsea: “Something more along the lines of why you go and what you do while you are there.”

Chris: “I go there to teach people stuff.”

 

That’s about as good as we’re going to get for now people ;)

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1. Hofbrauhaus. The local-ish haunt.

2. Kaiserscharrm from Maxbrau. Chris’s new favorite dessert.

3+4. Cable car to get to a grill-style restaurant at the top of a mountain.

5+6. Oberammergau really is beautiful. I can’t wait until I get to go with Chris sometime. (Click on the photos to make them bigger.)


 

And the award for 1st visitor goes to…

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COUSIN PATRICK!

Patrick is (was) doing a study abroad in London and decided to pop up to Stavanger to test drive our guest bed and have a 3-day adventure with his favorite cousin and cousin-in-law.

(We ARE your favorites, right Patrick?…)

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We absorbed fascinating factoids from the Arkeologisk Museum and Petroleum Museum,

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island hopped the Lysefjord via bicycle,

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channeled our inner vikings,

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traversed long bridges,

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saw great views of Stavanger from said long bridges,

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and generally pondered our small existence in comparison to the natural wonders of the fjords.

Yeah… I’d say we were Patrick’s favorite cousins.

(If you are friends with Cousin Patrick on Facebook head on over there to see more photos from his trip here. If you aren’t friends with Cousin Patrick…then that’s a bummer, cuz he’s a super great guy.)

101: Intro to Vikings

 

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When Chris first found the job listing for the NATO job here in Stavanger I’m pretty sure there were only 2 things we knew about Norway:

  1. It was cold all the time.
  2. It was populated by pillaging, plundering vikings.

After we got here, we discovered we were totally right about the first one. It’s cold here all the time. Except during summer, which happened for about 2 weeks back in April.

Unfortunately, we discovered we were a bit off on the 2nd one. We’ve lived in Norway 6 entire months and have never once seen a viking! grumble::grumble

Words like “gypped” and “scam” and “what the heck?” were on the verge of escaping from our lips when, on a fateful Saturday afternoon, we saw an entire village of vikings! (Phew! Our childhood learnings weren’t lying afterall!) There they were sitting in tents wearing viking clothing and selling viking-spirit amulets and homemade viking swords and dead viking reindeer skins…

 

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And roasting viking lambs on spits over open fires. And doing viking war cries and viking battles and making viking baskets and eating viking pølse and lots of other viking stuff.

 

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They lived in viking grass-roof huts (ok…these weren’t actually viking grass-roof huts. They were Iron-Age-Norwegian-farmer-grass-roof huts. But we got free tickets from the viking market so close enough)…

And raised viking sheep (again…more Iron Age than viking)…

 

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And took pretty awesome viking landscape photos (definitely viking, not Iron Age).

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Next step: “102: Pillage and Plunder.”

Chris = 30 = DOUBLE Awesome

Why? Because he was super surprised by his super surprise party on the Friday after his real birthday!

Despite all odds and everything pointing towards something out of the ordinary, he really had no idea. Success! (I would brag how that means I can be a sneaky, scheming wife when I want to be…but that’s probably not a positive thing to claim… :) )

 

 

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Surprise! And he thought we were going over to the Sheehan’s for a game night. Muwahaha.

 

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Being presented by a super secret, top security, indestructible gift from his co-workers: A pre-ordered copy of Battlefield 3 with it’s own custom designed disk case.

 

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Grillin’ and chillin’.

 

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A birthday cake worthy of a man who has completed 30 whole revolutions around the sun.

(Side note on the cake, I worked on this thing for 3 days straight right under Chris’ nose and still kept it a surprise. It involved lots of lies, subterfuge, and kicking Chris out of the house when he randomly decided to come home early from work…but I’m really quite proud of the fact that he truly had no idea :) )

 

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“Stick a candle in it’s mouth so it can breathe fire!”

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“Mmmm…maybe not such a good idea”

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That’s a little better…

 

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

 

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All good things eventually come to an end.

Especially cakes, your 20s, and blog posts.

THE END

PS: Thank you to all of you who helped me pull this off. You guys ROCK and I couldn’t have done it without you!