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Wednesday, 30 July 2008

The continued car hunt and such.

We are still looking for a new car (well... new to us at least). Nic borrowed a bicycle from Jock at work and rode it home one day for lunch last week and decided that he didn't really want to do that every day. I figured that he'd change his mind and I'm actually kind of glad he did. While riding a bike to work is great for the environment and the pocket as far as gas is concerned, I really didn't feel like it was a very safe option for him. The entrance to our street is right by a corner that cars tend to fly around and I wouldn't want anyone to hit him as he got on the road. So we are back to looking solely for a car. The other day we were trying to figure out if it would be cheaper to get our car up to par for MOT but decided that we'd rather not when we saw what all would need to be done to it. We would have to replace all four tires (or tyres as they say here...), at least one of the wheels, and the brakes. We'd have to get the back door fixed, get new windshield wipers and fix the sprayer thing, fix all the rust spots, and pressure wash the undercarriage. By the end of all that... we'd be paying basically as much as we bought the car for (we bought it from a friend pretty cheap). So anyway- we've been looking online for something and haven't found what we are looking for yet. As long as we get something by the end of August we are ok. Bob got back into town today and called us as soon as he landed. He's had a busy few weeks, he had to replace two vehicles in his house (his wife, Jamie's, and his daughter Paige's). Maybe we can get some pointers on speed car hunting.

I've been keeping myself busy around the house, trying not to get too impatient waiting for the office to say they are ready for me. I've been doing laundry like a mad woman, ironing, doing the dishes and cooking- the usual. Other than that, I've been playing sudoku like it's going out of style. I've become quite addicted to the game for some reason. If I'm sitting still, that's what I'm most likely doing. I guess it's a good thing, at least it keeps me thinking and helps me keep sharp. I really enjoy the ones that have 16 numbers per square, instead of just the nine, they seem to be more entertaining.

I'm really trying to stay positive about missing all the fun this weekend back in the States. Saturday is Traci and Grandma Julie's birthday as well as my Grandparent's (Wanda and Frank) 60th wedding anniversary party. It's going to be like a huge family reunion and as far as I know, Nic and I are going to be the only ones to miss it. I'm really broken hearted about that, I would love to be there to see everyone and be a part of the festivities. Then Sunday is Megan and Kevin's wedding... I'm going to miss that too.

I can't think of anything else to add... so I'll leave it at that.

Friday, 18 July 2008

Update Shmupdate.

So a few of you have decided to flood my e-mail with requests for more "up to date" updates. Again, I don't have a whole lot to say- we haven't been up to much.

Nic got his contract completely filled out today, so he is officially employed on this side of the pond now (as opposed to working for the Houston office officially). I guess that's a good thing, we won't have to worry about it anymore. On the other hand, they only get paid once a month from this office so it will be a little different money wise. I think I might actually miss seeing the bigger amount on the paychecks (since he was getting paid in dollars the amount was pretty much double what it will be now). That's ok though, I'm sure the bank account here will look a lot better now that there will actually be money deposited in it on a regular basis. I also finally was completely added to the account at the bank here, so that's good news and great timing.

I am toying with the idea of finding a job somewhere else over here, simply because I'm becoming more and more impatient. Last I heard there were some "hurdles" that needed to be jumped before they could get me on and it was going to take a couple weeks to get everything straightened out. Last time I heard it was going to be a couple weeks was almost 9 months ago. That's not very soothing for me. The thing is, I was really looking forward to working there... hell, I would say I was even really excited about it. I don't know whether I've fully committed myself to looking elsewhere or not, I haven't completely given up hope that maybe- just maybe- they'll get it straightened out sooner rather than later. In the meantime, I'm casually looking around for something else to come my way. We'll see what ends up happening. Until I start working somewhere, I'll continue to be super housewife (I've actually started to like ironing) and keep my house in shape. Nic brings home paperwork for me to do for him pretty often, I enjoy doing that and it keeps me busy too.

Let's see... what else... oh, Nic and I decided to wait a little bit longer to continue officially "trying" to have kids. We had some huge in depth conversations about where we are now and how it's not so bad just being the two of us. We figure we have plenty of time to start a family and that it's nice just being able to do whatever we want whenever we want without having to worry about certain things. This move has really made our bond a lot stronger I think, and it's great to just be happy being alone with each other. Yes, we do still want kids, but we think it's worth waiting to get to spend some more quality time with each other first.

We are also looking to buy a new car (actually really soon... since our MOT will expire on our car at the end of August and we are certain that it won't pass again this year). Nic is really thinking about getting a bicycle to ride to work and has been shopping around for one that he really likes. So far he's found one that he really likes. It's called the Trek Soho 4 and he's been talking about it non-stop for the past 3 days. We've been looking at it online, he's looked at it in the shop, and we are supposed to go look at it together at the store this weekend. I think it'd be good for him to ride his bike to work, I just don't know about it during the winter time. It does get slippery and snowy here, which makes me wonder about how safe it is to ride it to work then. Plus, there aren't sidewalks to ride on and it is pitch dark in the mornings when he has to go to work in the winter. I think it'd be best to get a bike for him to ride when the weather is appropriate and another cheap car for during the rest of the days. He insists that he would ride it rain or shine (or sleet or snow)... I'm not so sure I buy that. The problem with my idea is that it is hard as hell trying to convince my husband to go "cheap" on anything (unless it's something for me or at the grocery store lol). So getting another cheap car is out of the question since this one hasn't even lasted us a year (well, it runs fine, but due to the rust on the undercarriage, broken back door, and brake issues it won't pass MOT and would cost more to fix it than we paid for it in the first place). I think we are going to look around this weekend and see what we come up with.

That's about all I can come up with for today...

Monday, 14 July 2008


Ok, so recently we haven't been up to a whole lot, besides catching up on movies that we wanted to see. That's actually all we've done lately, besides hanging out with Fiona and Stavros. He just moved into his new flat, so we've gone over there a few times. It's a nice two bedroom two bath flat in town, so it's convenient to a lot of things. We met up at his place and walked to the indian place we really like the other day, which was nice. It's good to sit and chat with them, we enjoy their company.

I think we've got our money's worth our of our movie passes this month (and we aren't even close to being done yet since Batman: The Dark Knight hasn't come out, as well as Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging, and Wall-E (even though we've already seen it)). So far this month we've seen Hancock, Journey to the Center of the Earth (in 3D), Kung Fu Panda (twice so far...), The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, the Forbidden Kingdom, Wanted and Wall-E (the latter 2 in the States). We've enjoyed everything so far. I think my favorites are Wall-E, Kung Fu Panda, and Prince Caspian though. I do love Jet Li though, so that would probably come in fourth. Anyway, I'm about to go to bed- I just wanted to say that I'm not neglecting the blog, I just didn't really have a whole lot to talk about. Tomorrow is a holiday here (I'm not sure for what exactly) so we'll be here or hanging out with Fi and Stavros. We also want to go to a store to shop for a sleeve for Nic's new laptop. OH- I haven't mentioned that yet. We got Nic a new mini book thing. It's a laptop that fits on a piece of paper basically (it fits perfectly in my purse actually, which Nic hates but I think is rather cute. He's been fighting me on whether or not I should get to keep He needed a new laptop since the hinges broke on his old one, so it'll be good. I kind of want one for myself.

Anyway- I'm off to bed, I need to clean house again tomorrow before they get here, so I can't sleep in like I have the past few days. Seeing as it's already 1:40 am I should probably get some shut eye.

Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Time for an update

So I've been lazy the past week or so and haven't updated at all, so I figure now is as good of a time as any (it's either this... or cleaning house).

We've actually been doing a lot since last time I updated from California. I think the last time I updated we had just wrapped up the MATE competition. We still are talking about it and remembering how much fun we had there. It was very busy and sometimes very stressful, but we really enjoyed ourselves and got to know some fantastic people. I'm glad that we got to go out with some of the judges on Friday night (I think I said Thursday last time... which was incorrect). We hung out with about 15 judges at this really great pizza/brewery place called the Pizza Port (if you are in La Jolla, California- be sure to check it out). From there, we went out with Brennan, Khrysta, Peter, and Tad and hung out in the dorms. We all had a really good time and got to know each other pretty well. Saturday night was the banquet, which I've already talked about and when we went to see Wanted with Bob. Sunday, Clete came down to see us. We went to eat at TGI Fridays (they have awesome quesadillas by the way) and watched Wall-E. I loved it and can't wait for it to come out here, so we can see it again. He spent the night and then on Monday we went kayaking. We were going to go skydiving but we opted for something cheaper so Clete could go too, and we had a great time kayaking anyway. We got really close to some dolphins, which was absolutely amazing. If you reached really far over while in your kayak you could have touched them (we didn't because we didn't want to tip over...) but they were right next to us which was really neat. It's one thing to see dolphins that are captured/tame but to see them in the wild where they belong is such an awe inspiring experience. We played with them for a little while and followed them around while they hunted for jelly fish. Then we went to go and catch some really huge waves (not a good idea). I was going to stay back further and let the boys play but Nic convinced me to join in because it was "so much fun" and he felt that I had to try it. So he went ahead of me a little bit and then waited for me as I waited for a bigger wave. When it came it was huge and it pushed me directly into him. Literally. I hit him in the back with my kayak (he had a life jacket on so it didn't hurt him) but it did push him into an awkward position and the wave ended up knocking him over onto some rocks. He cut his knee (and a few places on his feet and calf too) and has been hobbling around ever since. He has quite enjoyed telling everyone the story about how it's my fault he fell out and has been getting sympathy from everyone. I think he's going to milk it for all it's worth, which is ok... I still feel really bad about it. It's healing now so I think by next week it should be good again.

Tuesday was our flight back to Aberdeen and due to Nic's injury we had to really rush in the airports. The good thing about that is that we made a flight that we probably wouldn't have since we got to ride in the cart across the airport instead of walking all the way there. On the first flight (from San Diego to Minneapolis) we actually flew with one of the teams from MATE and they came and thanked Nic again for judging (he was wearing his judge shirt) which was really sweet. We landed back home at like 9 on Wednesday morning and went to bed. We slept until like 6 at night, then got up and ate and pretty much went back to bed at like 10. Thursday Nic went to work and then brought Stavros home with him. We then went out to eat at Pizza Hut with Bob, Stavros, Mike (whom I am now calling Micah-L...), Ian, and Ian's wife Jackie. That was good, it was nice to see people again. We then all walked over to the theater to see Hancock, which was good but definitely surprising. Friday was the 4th of July, which came and went without a whole lot of notice. We said happy Independence Day to each other, and that was about the end of our celebrations. It's hard to find fire works on a non holiday here. Anyway, Saturday was Jamie's birthday, so we called her to say hi and get the latest scoop on what's going on, and pretty much relaxed the whole day. Sunday we went to Subsea 7 to go see the simulator there, and played around on it for quite a while. It was actually a good time, we ended up playing Axis and Allies in their conference room (Nic and I, Stavros, Micah-L and Bob). Nic, Bob and I won (of course) even though Nic and I kept nodding off while it was everyone else's turn, since we hadn't gone to bed from Saturday yet. We also went to the grocery store to replenish the stock. I had cleaned out the fridge before we left for California and so it was pretty much empty. Monday was Ducati cat's birthday (he's 1 now!) but other than that it was work for Nic and reading for me.

I've been reading quite a bit since we got back from California. I think it has hit me that I'm going to go to work soon and I won't have time to do everything I've become used to doing to fill the time. I've read The Pact (another Jodi Piccoult) and Baby Proof (by Emily Giffin) in the past two days... both were good, but I think Baby Proof will be on my mind for a while. It's about a woman who doesn't want to have kids and marries someone with the intent on having a "childfree" marriage. Then the husband changes his mind, and it's about what happens when you really love someone but have a major issue you can't compromise on. It's been stuck in my head since I've read it and it actually has a lot more social commentary than I expected. Anyway... I have been banned from reading for the rest of the week by my husband, he's feeling neglected he says. Haha.

Anyway- Nic will be leaving for London to go see his programmers again on Thursday. He is just gone for the day (he leaves at 8:55 and comes home at 7:20) so it isn't huge deal. Then Friday is Taylor's birthday (she'll be 3 this year!). Bob is possibly coming over tonight for dinner, but I haven't heard anything. Who knows. Wednesday night I think we are going to the movies with Fiona and Stavros, but I don't have that confirmed yet either.

I think that's about it... I need to clean my house just in case Bob does make it tonight, it's already 1:30.