Sunday, 29 September 2013

A Towel and Bottle of Water

I got to stay at a nice hotel earlier this week. I enjoyed it. One day I went for a run. When I got back, one of the three doormen (three seems like a lot) asked if I wanted a bottle of water and a towel after my run. Yes! Then I got confused because he moved away like he was going to get it. I didn't know he was serious when he asked. I almost said no so that he would not have to go wherever to get it, but after I asked if he was serious, I was ushered into a side door, then handed a bottle of water and a towel. Wow. I felt special. The hotel even gave me a map that they had made to direct you to the greenway path. That day I was a little bummed that that was the only run that I was going to be able to do that week. 

Sometimes it's nice to get pampered. It is good to feel special. A bottle of water and a towel after a run, enjoyable. 

I wonder what I can do or actually do to make people feel special like that. It is simple and does not have to be planned or intense or difficult.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

The Pool, Cake and the Internet

Work has started and it is good to be there and to meet new people. It is good to be around people during the day again for my extroverted self. I spent a lot of time grocery shopping, running new routes, running errands, researching things in the area and reading by/in the pool last week before my job started. It was lovely and I miss the relaxing afternoons. I got a good tan and read a lot of my book. I bought the Steve Jobs book a few years ago thinking that it would be interesting to read. However, it is a large book, five hundred and some pages. Whoa. But, guess who has less than 100 pages left?! 

I had a few more days off than I expected. Also, we unpacked the apartment in less time than anticipated. Both of those things meant that I had some leisure time. That was hard for me at first, I thought that I should be doing productive things and almost felt guilty. I gave myself a pep talk (on the way to the pool) to enjoy it, as how many times in life do you have 5 days with some stuff to do, but not a whole lot? Silly that I needed the pep talk, but it proved effective and the days were lovely. 

Today I learned the importance of typing correctly when making a password. I set up a new router and a clever password. (clever as in I thought it was entertaining, not overly secure I'm sure.) Then I told Ryan the password, he thought I was a big dork for what I made it but then it told him that he was typing it incorrectly. Upon further investigation, I had typed it wrong myself. Ooops. I thought it was funny. (surfingthewebw0w in case you're curious)

Last weekend, I got to make a cake. I made a carrot cake. I really enjoy baking and making food in general. It is temporary and delicious art and a good time of worship through creating. When I was making the cake, I was remembering other times that I had made the cake. There were great times in England (where I had first googled the recipe). There were great people I got to share the cake with there. Then I made it several times in Madison, I can remember a few easters that I made it for dear people there. (carrot cake because of the easter bunny :)) And now I made it for my husband's birthday. Fun to look back at life. Interesting to remember past good times and reflect on the goodness in this season too. Come soon if you want a piece!

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Getting Adjusted

My tea the other night had the saying "live in your strength." I liked it a lot. Living in your strength is living in God first, as he is our strength. I also think that as we grow closer to God, he helps us to be more ourselves and there is a great strength in that. We discover the things that we are good at and/or are passionate about and have freedom to pursue them. A few years ago, I spent time in England, it taught me more about who I am. It also helped me to like myself more because it was more genuine, plus I discovered traits that I did not know I had. Living as yourself is a very good thing to do. 

I like discovering new places. It is funny the things that we notice though. For example, here are some first impressions of the Charlotte area and in general:

The are a lot of trees (even downtown).

You see cars often parked facing the wrong way on the side of the road. I don't know why. 

People are very chatting here. I like it. We went to the grocery store. There was wine sampling and the lady told us that we made the end of her shift great because she spent a long time talking to us and recommending restaurants. 

Cardboard is hard to recycle. The recycling at our apartment says paper only. (I saw someone with cardboard, so I may try it.) I saved a few boxes that we had so that I could take them somewhere to recycle. Because I was going to Whole Foods today, I thought I would take it there. I was looking at the choices of the bins to put it in: 
Option 1: trash
Option 2: plastic or glass
Option 3: compost
A gentleman who worked there was trying to be helpful and kept telling to put it in the trash. He told me many times "you can't recycle that, put it in the trash." "but it's cardboard sir, you can recycle it." In the end, which much guilt in my heart, I put it in the trash. He looked at me and repeated himself so many time, I felt bad because he was trying to be helpful and followed his instruction. 

New appliances can be tricky. We submitted a maintenance request that had to do with our fridge twice. Time one they needed to fix the ice maker in the freezer. I have no clue what they did, but there is ice so that was successful. Time two, the request was about the drawer that you put lunch meat in. It was hard to open. I got home to a note from the maintenance people, pull it down first, then out, it is a lock. I figured it was something easy but am a little confused by the need to lock the turkey and cheese. 

I have discovered places to run to and parks. And apple picking! I have also discovered that I can pop popcorn, yum!

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Moving Time

Yesterday we drove to North Carolina, and now we live there. Whoa. Moving towns is interesting, exciting thinking of the new adventure, sad leaving what was home. I had an good way to put it, "if you are not sad to leave a place, why were you still there?"

Leaving Madison was difficult. It is a great city, so many good things to do, and great food to eat. Plus, we have fabulous friends in Madison.

When I left England, it was very hard too. I cried on the plane on the way back to the states. Madison turned out to be a great move. I fell in love with the city quickly. I also met so many great people along the way. For a while in Madison, I thought that I would leave it. I lived like that too to some extent (hesitant to commit to things). Then I had a change of heart and decided that it was better to live in the moment and commit to people, live well in the place, and see what happens. Two years after that, I am moving. Committing to being in a place helps you to live there better. It may not be forever (as moving happens) but it is better than being only halfway there.