It Takes A Village

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Wow, it has been a WHILE since I’ve caught everyone up on the crazy that is my current life! Throughout the past weeks I’ve been moving, working, applying for jobs, moving AGAIN and trying to keep my head from spinning so hard it falls off.

Luckily, I am #blessed (sorry, I couldn’t resist!) with the best community a girl could ask for. Sanity saved.

So, what HAVE I been up to? Well, I’ve moved into my permanent housing situation in a beautiful Seattle neighborhood that is close to nature, parks, Puget Sound and a short bus hop to downtown. Sometimes I think I’ve died and gone to heaven. I’m so happy to be back home, it seems surreal.

The whole moving escapade has been quite the adventure because I started off staying with a friend on her bedroom floor, my first week back (thanks Claire!), graduated to a temporary living situation with some rad Seattle chicks. And a month later, I was lucky enough to land (kind of bumpy, but I’m still in one piece!) in my current abode. I’m living with a couple of fantastical chicks, now, and I’m sloooowly pulling together my heavily Pintrest inspired living space.

I would just like to reiterate that none of these things would have been possible without the amazing community I’m a part of. I have the best friends a girl could wish for, I’ve had more support and love than I could have ever imagined, and my mother has been a darling bringing down/moving boxes. Oh! And this time I’m in the same country as these people so I can actually hug them and say “Thank you!” You all have made the miracle of this transition happen. Thank you thank you thank you!

What’s up with the rest of my life? Well my job has been keeping me on my toes, and is filled with fun every day, my housemates are awesome, I GET TO HANG OUT WITH MY FRIENDS, and I get to see my family whenever I want to. Sheesh. It’s all just too much. When they say “cup overflows, “ I think I finally understand what it means.

I am so incredibly happy to be back in my city. But I also recognize that my joy in being back is amplified because of the adventures I’ve been on abroad. While it might seem like regret for leaving Seattle might be a feeling that hits right about now, that’s not the case AT ALL! I’m just so happy to be where I am right now.

Will this be my forever stopping point? Who knows. But in these moments I am happy. I love being surrounded by people I love, and I love having the adventures that pop up and meet me every day.

Enough with the frilly stuff??

Okay. Fine.

Just know that moving back to one’s own country, after having adventures in another one, CAN be done successfully. It takes a lot of hard work (A LOT), and a lot of patience with yourself, but it can be done.

One of the biggest things I’ve been learning, lately, is just to let go of my trying to control my circumstances, and to really dig deep. I have so many things I could stress out about, but taking a step back and approaching them each individually has proved to be so much better than curling up in a ball and trying to hope the problems go away.

Not only does glorifying stress not help solve the situations at hand, but it prevents me from enjoying the beautiful little things around me in my day to day moments. Yes, I am so thankful to finally be back, but that doesn’t mean things have been easy every step of the way. AND THAT’S OKAY.

I’m fine admitting that I don’t know what’s going to be the next step, moving forward. I mean, I didn’t even know where I was going to live until weeks before I would have been homeless.
BUT.
Something always comes up. And I have faith that it always will; because in the end, my fate and my future are not in my own hands. While the hard work is mine to dedicate myself to, the direction I’m heading is from an always-faithful Father.

This life is crazy, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m back! I have no idea what the next step is in half of the areas of my life, but I know I’m on the right track, and FINALLY that’s enough.

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Pintrest Is My Friend, And Food

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I have Bisquick in my fridge.
Probably not the most exciting sentence you’ve read today; but it gets better. You see, the adventure lies in how the Bisquick got there. Because it didn’t come from the store.

I’m a self professed stress cooker, so when I came to France and saw everything around me different in the grocery stores, my stressed out self became more stressed about my chosen de-stressing activity.

But never fear, I did figure out a way to get my favorite treats, still. And they’ve been a hit with the family, as I’ve shared recipes with them, too! Thank God for Pintrest. Here are some of my favorites, so you can enjoy them even if you’re not living 5,000 miles away from the US.

 

  1. Bisquick 
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I kept finding recipes that said something along the lines of, “Just throw in some Bisquick.” Which is great, except for when you don’t have Bisquick within a thousand miles of your house. Luckily, this blog has an excellent recipe for a homemade Bisquick which turned out great and worked brilliantly in my other recipes.

  1. Fajitas

 

6b4ecd1d19f414e487fe915ef9f1d09dEvery Friday we have fajitas. I’ve tried and tried to have different meals, thinking the boys can’t really want to eat the same thing every week…but they do. And they let me know. Like when I made stir-fry and one of them asked, “But can I just put the meat in a tortilla and make a fajita?” Unfortunately there isn’t just a pack of fajita seasoning that you can grab at the grocery store, here. Fortunately, this lovely blog had my back. (Also Taco Seasoning – WARNING: A bit spicy)

 

  1. Pizza Dough

how-to-make-pizza-dough-6-copyThere isn’t really an option in France to just order a pizza “without cheese.” And as someone with a dairy allergy, that makes it really hard for me to have pizza, now. But lucky me, I found this recipe that helped me make some goodness at home so I can have a treat when I’m in the mood for a little Italy, and less France.

 

  1. Cake

 

729ce9790aeb33a39a0a92b3604dfed6It was one of my boys’ birthdays a couple of weeks ago, and I was asked to make a couple of cakes for his birthday. The only problem? There aren’t really box mixes in this country (and the few that do exist aren’t worth even trying to make). Which meant heading to Pintrest for a recipe that would tell me how to make a cake from scratch. It wasn’t actually that hard, but following the instructions with two screaming boys running around made concentrating just a tad more difficult.

  1. Icing

 

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This was one of the funniest things I made, not because I haven’t made it before, but because icing is just incredibly NOT French. French people do not ice cakes. The kids could not even handle how much sugar there was, but they loved it. The looks on their faces as they ran and told their brothers about this new treat was absolutely priceless. (Recipe)