Sunday, January 22, 2012

Welcome 2012.....Better Late than Never

Happy New Year!  A little late but for those who know me well...this is no surprise ;-)  Well, 2011 did not end without some struggle.  It was a trying year for both of us here in the Carlson household.  However, we are forever stronger and more connected.  2011 brought us ups and downs that made it difficult to sleep sometimes.  But despite all of those things we agreed to end the year looking at what we have.  A roof over our heads, food, clothing and amazingly wonderful family and friends.  Our marriage is certainly stronger and these ups and downs have helped us create a more solid foundation that will continue to get us through life's challenges.

I do believe we started the new year off perfectly too.  Cameron and I spent the weekend...just the two of us in Charlottesville, VA.  Sort of a vacation we haven't had since our honeymoon and some much needed time away from the Navy Capital of the world that is Norfolk.  And quality time to enjoy each others company before he ONE WEEK!!  But we'll get to that...

We spent our time in Charlottesville eating at the local dives...amazing food :-)  African cuisine one night, french on new years and how american of us we threw in some Five Guys!  lol  More importantly we went wine tasting...A LOT of tasting.  We hit up four vineyards in one day....don't worry we stopped to get lunch halfway through.  I needed it more than Cam...hehehe  And then for you historians and nerds like me I dragged Cam to Monticello and the Rotunda at UVA for some architectural history.  Got to get my fix ;-)

And here we are more than half way through January and my wonderful husband is getting ready to set off on deployment number two.  Wow, has it already been almost three years since he left for the first one!  Yikes!  And although that comes with its own challenges, there is light at the end of the tunnel.  Shore Duty!!!!  Two magic words that mean those next two years are going to be A-W-E-S-O-M-E.  Wow, to have my husband home all the time....Wonderful!

So I am not happy or sad to see 2011 go.  We had some great days we had some not so great days and some days that just sucked.  But at the end of it I am still surround by amazing people and for that 2012 is already looking to be a good year.  :-)

Thursday, October 27, 2011


I was excited on my way home from work today because it was the first day this week I was going to be home before the sun went down. (I almost didn't make it after i realized I had to pick up the dry cleaning). So when I got home hands full of stuff...the kitty cat greeted me lovingly.

On my way home i was also thinking about how i was going to cook the chicken i left out this am. Well, Sneaky apparently got bored....and the chicken was sitting in the middle of the floor in the plastic....just raw chicken.

Hilarious! But also I was very hungry. Lesson learned....don't leave food out all day while at work.

Monday, September 26, 2011

What do you do all day?!

For any of my friends out there who have been unemployed for any length of time you can probably relate to this question. Yes there are certainly perks to not working, such as sleeping in, going to the gym every-day, visiting friends, spending time with my loving husband (when he's home....when was the last time that was again?). And although I love our urban panther Sneaky. Yes his name is Sneaky and he likes it just fine ;-). Throwing his rattle mouse and then watching him bring it back to me (this is happening in real time) is entertaining for a time.

Anyway, what I'm really getting at is what I'd like to be doing is working and feeling like I am contributing to my professional careeer. What I have found is looking for the joy in little things. I spend a lot of time cooking and baking, reading, working out, taking care of little projects around the house, helping friends, meeting up with old coworkers for coffee. And although none of these things seem like a big deal I get to live and enjoy them in that moment without having to worry about being somewhere or having something done. Which is nice. And my day is made up of little bright moments all the time. And I love at part!

And so begins another attempt at making this blog a more constant part of my life. Although I continually struggle with the "who the hell cares about what I have to say" except my shrink and my But if you can handle my sarcasm and rambling well be just fine!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Traveling Solo

I have been fortunate enough to travel...A LOT!  With that being said some of my most memorable trips are from childhood....when I was about 6 years old and my first time in Disney.  I was NOT a fan of Mickey Mouse and so refused a photo opp with him and the fam.  On the morning of our departure (an afternoon flight), I woke up feeling like a pretty confident 6 year old.  So I told the p-units that I wanted to take a picture with Mickey.  It was a series of chaotic events as we raced to get to the park and get the photo with enough time to make it to the airport.  Fail...we missed our flight and got another one, and spent 6 or so extra hours in the Chicago Airport with two children (6 and 4) in an attempt to arrive home on the same day.  My parents were SUPER excited ;-)

My next series of most memorable trips was definitely my time in Europe.  Living there for 3.5 months with Cameron was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! 

Ideally Cam is the best travel partner.  And yes he is my husband and yes its pretty important that we travel well together.  But it is more than that, I truly enjoy all the memories and moments when we are exploring.  We are able to strike a great balance that makes traveling fun.  As you all know Cam is a talker so we always meet interesting people and have dinner with them and learn more about wherever they're from and we've had many invitations and offers of places to stay!!  Pretty Cool!

Which leads me to the topic of traveling alone. For me its about the doesn't matter whether you're traveling with a spouse, friend, family, co-worker, classmates.  I feed off the energy of others, although I am confident in my navigation of public transit, maps, I have no problem eating alone in a restaurant.  But thriving on the energy of others is part of the excitement that traveling brings.  When you are in pair I've noticed that there is often more interaction with servers, shop owners, strangers!  But traveling alone to me lacks all of that added interest.  Not to mention you can't look 360 degrees at once!!  Gosh!! How am I suppose to spot that little cafe or that super cute shop if I can only look at one side at a time.  Not to mention sometimes its nice to have someone else around to put in there two cents. 

As a result I have realized although I am confident and comfortable enough to travel solo...I dislike :-)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Remember me?!

Greetings!  So I know it has been a long long time since I last posted and I decided this was long over due!

I am once again traveling in Japan.  Since the last time I was here during the Major earthquake that hit the East coast of the main land Japan on March 11.  During this trip I started in Misawa, Japan which is approximately 250-300 miles north of Tokyo.  Although the base I was on was about 15-20 miles inland the surround town I visited one day to work at had been affect by the tsunami.  As we drove down along the coast our driver pointed out areas where the tsunami came up and over the trees and into the city.  I can't imagine what that was like.

Having asked around a bit, I also found out that many people had no idea that the tsunami was coming.  After the earthquake communication and much of the power was out.  And since earthquakes happen anywhere and everywhere, I guess it wasn't necessarily the case that there would be a tsunami.  In the event that you would suspect there might be a tsunami...the only thing you can do is get away from the water.  Even on base the only procedure is to make sure everyone is OK and accounted for.  Its just part of living in Japan.

It is truly amazing the way the Japanese people have come back from the awful devastation and carry on with life.  Now that I am in Yokosuka, South but much closer to Tokyo than the beginning of my trip.  The people here continue to be affected by the 9.0 earthquake.  They are still short on power and in some areas the residents have gone into voluntary blackouts, in an attempt to avoid mandatory blackouts from the power companies like those that occurred immediately following March 11.

What a selfless and socially aware society!  I mean really, would this ever in a million years happen back home...I think not.  Here it is a way of life, end of story.  Which makes me truly appreciate my time here.  This being my last trip, it has allowed me to reflect and think about all the wonderful places I've had the opportunity to visit, the magnificent food and the special memories I'll have forever.

I hope that in the future I can bring Cam here and and show him around ;-)  I do have high hopes that I'll be back since I have been unable to cross of Kyoto and Mt Fuji during any of trips...both places on my bucket list!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Newest Addition to the Carlson Family!!

It has taken some long discussions, some convincing and lots of waiting.....but it was so worth it!!  I just haven't decided on a name yet...but there's still time :-)

I think I look good in it ;-)  This is our new baby a 2007 Ford Edge AWD.  A bit of a step up from the "lim."  But we finally decided that no heat, no ac and an engine that sounds like its about to drop.  It was time for CC to get a new baby!  And I AM SO EXCITED!!!!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Sasebo Burger!!!

One of the big things to eat in Sasebo is the 'Sasebo Burger.'  Apparently started in the 1950s by a sailor, the hamburger caught on and now there are several Japanese Burger joints competing for the best 'Sasebo Burger.'  Naturally...I had to indulge...and indulge I did.  Check out this MASSIVE thing!!!
This burger is 1/3 lb with a fried egg, the most delicious thick slice of bacon, lettuce, American cheese, ketchup, mayo, some special sauce and tomato.

I ate at the 'Log Kit.'