Monday, November 3, 2014

Congratulations to Sarah

Sarah has completed here Masters Degree from Hamline University.
Good job. We are so proud of you for all your hard work.

Events Here in Minnesota with Sarah and Becca

Becca and Sarah have a wedding to attend the first weekend Becca is back.

Becca gets ready to meet friends for brunch on Sunday.

One week after getting back to the US, Becca is on the road again.
Checking out the map for a trip out West.  Capone tries to help.  Tour goes out west - Black Hills in South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon and No. California to the redwood forest.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Becca is Back

Becca is back in the states.  She arrived on October 6th. We celebrated with dinner at Theresa's Mexican Restaurant.  It's great to have her back.
Sarah and Becca together again and friends --

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Driving in Bali - June 2014

On our recent trip to Bali, Indonesia Becca and I spent a lot of time on the road touring the island by SUV.  The island of Bali is about the size of the state of Minnesota and you can get anywhere and back in a day.  

My daughter, Becca had heard that you can rent a car and driver for $30 – 40 per day and go anywhere you wish on the island.  They will take you to your destination, wait for you to finish a tour or shopping or lunch and then take you to your next destination.  

Let me set the stage for you.
1.        Small. Narrow Roads:
The roads are narrow, small and single lanes each way in order to keep the environment as natural and original as possible. Along the road are markets, farms, convenience stores, eating places and in the country are temples and rice fields.  
2.        Vehicles:
There are tour buses, SUVs, trucks, motor scooters and bicycles everywhere.  
The motor scooters seem to be the most popular mode of transportation.  They are seen all over the road as they  weave their way around and through the traffic in any way possible.  

 Does this make sense to you?

A family of five can be seen on one motor scooter - one parent drives, the other sits behind and the kids are squeezed in between.
Our mode of transportation was by SUV with our own private driver.  
We did take motor scooters into town to shop one day but only once and not very far.

3.        Parking:
In addition, there is never anywhere to park your vehicle.  If you need to stop to buy something, the driver will pull over as much as possible, stop and the cars and scooters behind must merge into oncoming traffic and go around that stopped vehicle.  If there is a parking area - you will back into it with help from employees in the area - trus, trus, trus until they tap the back of the vehicle to STOP.
4.        Speed – not posted:
There are no speed limits posted, which is usually OK because you’re only driving at the speed of 2 miles per hour anyway.  There are no rules and it seems very chaotic to me.  Normal citizens help move traffic constantly until the police show up and take over.  
5.        Walking:
There are no sidewalks, only roads and you are at the mercy of the traffic already on the road.  To cross the street, you need to wait for a pause in the flow and then hold up your arm to halt traffic still coming.

I found it very hard to watch the road and traffic while being transported from place to place, mainly because they mix it all up and do it the opposite of us.  They drive on the other side of the road - their left turn is a right turn for us and their right turn is across traffic and similar to our left turn but it’s not.  The passenger seat is on the driver’s side and the driver sits on the opposite side. Got that?

I never did get used to driving on the wrong side of the road.  I found it hard to watch the road with all the scooters dodging and weaving through traffic.  I was so happy that I wasn’t doing the driving.

Back Home in the USA:
In addition to jet lag and loss of sleep from my travels, I thought I would never be comfortable driving a car again - there are so many differences here in Minnesota - fewer if any scooters, driving on the other side of the road and the fast speed and posted limits to follow constantly.  I started out slow, just taking in errands in the neighborhood and soon found driving in the USA in must less complicated and our traffic here is nothing compared to traffic in Indonesia.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Organizing My Craft Space

A craft friend and I were able to find time Saturday to unpack the multiple boxes in the basement and set up a craft haven for me.  We had a good time and I appreciate the help.  We found and organized things I forgotten I even had.  There's more work to do but it will be so much easier to find and play with all the fun stuff.
 Lots of shelves.
 Tables for projects
 Sara T as Vanna White shows off her display of stamps
A few of my completed scrapbooks and more

All Moved in and Enjoying Our Home

The boxes are unpacked and it's now a great place to live.  We love our new home.  Capone is adjusting well too.

I still have a couple projects to work on - the kitchen and the fireplace.

There's a place in the kitchen for a table and a couple chairs.  I haven't found one yet but I've seen several possibilities on line.  It's a great place to have a cup of coffee, review recipes and plan a few meals, or have a cozy chat with Bill or a friend.  Think of all the possibilities.

I've reached out for help with the wall space above the kitchen sink.  Pinterest to the rescue.  I have one framed farm print I can use but I need a grouping to make it work.  The space is only 26" by 46" wide. I'll let you know when I come up with something.

Although we don't have a fireplace in the living room we plan to purchase an electric one for warmth in the cold Minnesota winter months.  They really aren't as expense as you'd think.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

April 2014 - Our Move to Prior Lake

Bill and I found a one level townhouse in Prior Lake with two bedrooms and an unfinished basement.
We closed and moved in on April 12.  One moving crew and several unpacked boxes later, we are all settled.

Photos at the new house.

Capone:  'There are way too many boxes here!'

Bill and Capone sleeping after a job well done - well almost done.

February 2014 - Little Rock and Back

Sarah and I drove to Little Rock in mid-February for Megan's baptism.  It was fun to see family and get away from the cold Minnesota winter.

Will took us to Waffle House our first morning in town.

Lucy and Megan posed Sunday after Megan's lovely baptism.

Lunch with Will on Monday

 At the park - me and Lucy

Sarah takes time out to study.

We had a nice drive home on Tuesday with clear roads - just ahead of more Feb snow for Minnesota.

In 6 Months Time

I haven't blogged for awhile.  In fact I haven't blogged since Becca flew back to Indonesia over 7 months ago to continue teaching at English First (EF) in Karawaci.  Thanks to Skype and Viber we are able to keep in touch weekly by video, phone and text.

Bill, Sarah and I had a quiet Christmas holiday at home. The rest of the winter here in Minnesota was one of the coldest with lots of snow from December through April.

Sarah and I took a break in mid-February to drive to Little Rock, AR for Megan's baptism.  We were out of the ice and snow by Kansas and had lovely weather the whole weekend with temperatures in the high 50s.  It was a fun weekend with family and a great break from the harsh Minnesota weather.

Bill and I moved from Savage to Prior Lake in April.  We found a lovely one level townhouse, and a moving crew and several unpacked boxes later - we are all moved in.

Becca (Indonesia) helps her students prepare for the Chinese New Year.

Meanwhile Sarah, Bill and I had a quiet Christmas holiday at home in Savage.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Part 5: Saying Our Good-byes

All too soon everyone headed out of town again in opposite directions.
Will, Liz, Megan and Lucy had to return to Arkansas.
Becca packed and headed to the airport for our final good-byes.

It was a very sad time.  We knew she needed to leave but we wanted her to stay.  She would be teaching for another year in Indonesia. We all cried (except Bill).  We hated to leave her in the security line crying.

We got home to Savage and 10 minutes later Becca called and said her plane had been delayed for three hours.  Bill and I agreed to pick up lunch to share at the terminal. We had a Jimmy John lunch, a lovely chat, and sent Becca off in better spirits with a promise to chat on Skype soon.

That was the end of Becca's month long vacation, my granddaughter's visit and vacation with the whole wonderful family in town (you too - Will and Liz - we love you a tons).  It is always hard to say good-by.  Bill and I are already planning visits for 2014.