This is the wonderful rain which fell at the end of our Xmas celebration on Xmas eve. (Thank you Rachel for the pic!) It is super hot here now again, and we are awaiting refreshing rain. Who would have thought I would ever be excited about rain!!!!!!
I am feeling crushed. I don't know how many more rental applications being rejected I can cope with. I so need my own home space around me. There's apparently a 'housing crisis' in Melbourne. And we are all really sick with stomach flu, Eowyn the worst, poor lamb, can't keep anything down...
Julia: "Where is home? Where do we live?"
Paul: "Home is where we are, and we'll work it out. We can figure it out."
Paul: "There we were just having dinner, and it turned out to be Julia. It turned out to be Julia all along. Julia, you are the butter to my bread and the breath to my life. I love you darling girl."
Julia: "Perfect! Even if it isn't, never apologise! No excuses and no explanations!!"
I loved this movie, and chortled out loud oft on the flight from Auckland to Melbourne.
I wonder if the solution for feeling so sad and bereft at being far from you I love in Seattle, and you I love in London, and you I love in Stuttgart, and you I love in Cordoba, is simply to fly around the world more often!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I love you, my dear ones. I don't want to be far apart from anybody I love....
This photograph is particularly fun, as just afterwards Nathalie and I had one of our most infamous 'sisterly squabbles', about whether one specific ski slope was black diamond or not (because I couldn't cope with the fact that Nath had skiied a harder slope than me!!!!) I love the closeness which comes from making up after a fight! And the humour!! Love you Nathalie xoxoxoxo
Once upon a time, a kind hearted friend named Karen hosted the most wonderful goodbye party for Eowyn and Coco. She ordered a delectable pale pink cake with their names inscribed thereon. When she peeked at the cake, on bringing it home, she noticed that it said 'Farewell Ewoyn and Coco'. As she suspected, her friend Meg wasn't happy about that. The bakery was hours away, and Karen, determined, loving and creative, corrected the spelling herself, beautifully, and here 'tis!!!!!! Thank you dear Karen!!!!! Remember Galadriel is eternally blowing you kisses from me!!!!!
I am grieving intensely for my dear friends in Seattle, and for our delightful home, Bag End, and our garden and our sledding hill which probably will have snow on it next week, and each precious person to me and to Bens and to Eowyn and to Coco, and their lovely, supportive, amazing classes at school, and for my little nooks in my home where I would sit and drink tea and relax.
The feeling is an ache where my heart is, and it hurts. I am wishing I was still in Seattle. I love the family I am spending time with here so very much - I just wish that I was returning to my home and familiar world.
I keep crying all the time.
Bens and Eowyn and Coco are so wonderful, and all feel very close, and for this I am thankful.
Coco chose this picture for you Auntie Rachel!! This is the circular monkey bar at her school, and Coco holds the record for the most go-arounds!! We love you and are sooooo excited to give you a hug (and a birthday facial and massage!)
Today I had a pedicure with my good Canadian friend Beth, and my toes are orange with Thanksgiving Turkeys and Cornucopias! It is dark and very cold and rainy and very windy here. The door just blew suddenly and violently open, wind whistling in! There are still stunning golden fall leaves on many trees, though the trees in our garden are bare. It is lovely eating the plum jam I made from our plum tree, now that its leaves are all gone.
My good friend Karen took me tonight to a lovely marble bar and bought me a delectable chocolate volcano cake. Inside it, the hot lava was gooey, warm, delicious chocolate. As a chocoholic, the experience was rather heavenly for me. The addict within was yelling 'YIPPPPEEEEE! GIMMMMEEEE GIMMMMEEE GIMMEEEEEE'!
I rather enjoy my love of chocolate. It adds dimensions to life - chocolate, the 6th sense!
The problem is that now I cannot sleep. With the volcano cake, Karen had a hot buttered rum cocktail, and I a 'smores cocktail.
I think there might have been, all together, quite a lot of sugar.
CONGRATULATIONS ANITA, TOM, EDDIE, SEBBIE & ROO!
We are thrilled about your little baby-on-the-way!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am very proud to be Auntie to my first NIECE! Love Auntie Megan!
Coco is learning about dinosaurs at school, and drawing fabulous pictures of teradactyls and bracchiosauruses Her class made a volcano, and here she is making it erupt! We have quite a few volcanoes on our horizon here in Seattle - Mt Rainier, Mt Baker, and a little to the south, Mt St Helens.
Eowyn, Coco, Laurel and I went sledding on the slopes where I learned to ski last winter! 3 of us had a wonderful time, and the smallest of us was very cold and sad...
Meanwhile, Bens was in hospital today having a tonsular abcess drained. He's home now, poor love.
We are using the Father Christmas countdown until we leave, and it's 21 days. I am feeling numb, in terms of grieving for the loveliness of living near my close friends here. It is an achy feeling in my belly. the loveliness of seeing family and living nearby more than half of my Jones family doesn't seem real yet.
It's hard getting rid of lots of things which are of sentimental value to me. We just get 8 suitcases full and our carry-on, we've decided not to ship anything as it's too expensive.
We love you all! Thanks for reading this blog!!!!!!!!
I love the girl bathed in light in the left foreground. Growing up, I always imagined I was that girl, small amidst all the big people. I have been thinking a lot about art, as I am giving an art lesson in Eowyn's class on Monday. I want to teach them that whatever their response is to a piece of art, it is as significant as that of a famous art critic, because each viewer is part of the painting's story!
Bens' 35th party was tonight. I have just washed up, and feel very pleased with the nice clean house. It was a lovely party - our last Bag End party. I am very thankful for our lovely friends here in Seattle, and shall miss them immensely.
Today I found CHANTERELLE MUSHROOMS, on the Necklace Valley trail! about 30! in little
cloisters all around the forest! We had a delicious chanterelle,
butter and garlic stir fry for dinner. (the girls had angel wings stir
fry - the angel wings were also harvested in the woods on my hike!)
To find this lovely Chanterelle spot, take the Foss River Road just past the ranger station on hwy 2, past Skykomish. Turn right at each fork in the road - the trail is on the left, before the junction where Maloney Mountain is to the right in 5, and the end of the road to the left in 2. After the trail crosses a stunning waterfally stream, on a lovely log bridge, wander along a while and the first copse is down the hill on the right. Come to a hollow tree which the trail seems to go right into (and actually goes to the left, but getting inside the tree and looking up is fun, and kind of irrestistable!) Keep walking. Soon, on the right is a great big nurse log. Where the trail meanders of to the left, stop! The Chanterelles are all around, on both sides of the trail, delightfully hiding. Climb over the nurse log to find more.......
i love my family. We are all sick. We tried to reengage life today, and all went to work/school, and are consequently exhausted. I'm listening to Sufjan Stevens (John and Johanna burned us 'Greeting from Michigan' the day we drove from their place in Chicago to Hell, Michigan, which we didn't find), who just sang 'I live in America'. It is so very strange to me that in 43 days I won't live in America any more. How can one live any where other than America? (Substitute the country you've been living in 9+ years and you'll know what I mean!) I am reading John Irving's 'Widow for a Year', and am utterly absorbed. These pics are from earlier in October, when we were healthy and the sun shone. We're having magnificent fall fogs now, and the horse chestnut tree in our back garden awakens me each morn, Lothlorien yellow!
This is the White family, (L-R) Brisa, Alise, Hannah, Jesse, Josh, Liberty, Sierra, Joe, Sophia and Jewel. I first met them in 2000 when I was on LOGOS II and came with Bens to Ady Acres. They have been good friends ever since, and Eowyn and Coco love playdates with the Whites. Their home is very fun and relaxed, and reminds me of my own childhood, with my 5 siblings.
Today, we Adys attending Joe's funeral service and interment. Each of Joe's siblings expressed their love and sadness and memories of Joe. I feel so sad for these dear ones, and wanted to honour them, and ask for you to pray for them. My heart feels very raw and exposed, feeling sad for the White children, and remembering Tom, Rachel, Seren, Sam and me at our brother Stephen's funeral.
Siblings are very special, and I am extremely thankful for mine. Love you, Tom, Rachel, Seren, Sam & Stephen!