Monday, August 8, 2011

. . . end of a summer

I can hardly believe we've been here eight weeks already! Sometimes Keith and I look at each other and say, "Can you believe we live here?" It's definitely not vacation anymore, and we've settled into our routines, grocery shopping, cooking at home, learning where to shop for what, and meeting new friends. I assume that we've had similar experiences as anyone who has moved to a new city, just adding in the small language barrier, local currency, and 32 million bicycles (literally 32 million bicycles in a country of 16 million people). There of course have been some small adjustments to be made, some more pleasant than others.

For example, I think I can count on one hand the number of days/nights that our bedroom window has been closed. It literally stays open 24 hours a day for days or weeks on end. I find this a nice change compared to the Georgia summer heat and humidity where you begin sweating at the thought of taking a step outside. Here it is usually cool, breezy, with maybe an afternoon drizzle. But one downside to leaving the windows open at night is that Murphy hears things in the night that he never heard before, and will wake us to let us know that he hears it (like the obnoxious dog a few doors down who must have insomnia and barks at every little thing that moves around his house). As soon as Murphy hears him, he's up out of his bed and whining at the window -- but we just yell at him tell him to go back to bed and he does. : ) And while it has been really nice to keep windows open in the house, we finally broke down and bought a fan for our bedroom (no ceiling fan in our room -- bummer). I think this will help with the pregnancy heat I seem to give off and/or attract at night.

So this weekend we did things a little backwards . . . Saturday we stayed in the house and worked on some things around here that needed to get done, and then got ready for our first visitors! After all the help and kindness that Jason and Deena have showed us since way back when, we knew they needed to be our first guests here in Woensel, so we invited them over for dinner Saturday night. Jason's mom is in town so she kept the kids while they rode a train and then their bikes over for some quality adult time. : ) I made chicken with a broccoli and artichoke heart pasta dish, and Keith picked up a delicious dessert from the Albert Heijn. We had a really good time talking and catching up, and I'm glad we got to have them over before our little bundle of joy arrives (because who knows when we'll have visitors after that!).

We planned to have a low-key day on Sunday, considering everything is closed on Sundays--but not every Sunday of the month apparently! We found out that our Winkelcentrum Woensel is open the last Sunday of every month, and the Centrum in downtown is open the first Sunday of every month (yesterday). So we decided to go out for lunch and just enjoy a leisurely afternoon with no real plans. It was a really nice day and I'm glad we're getting in some time together before the chaos begins. ; )

So today I am 39 weeks preggo -- 7 days until Liam's due date, and still no signs or symptoms of labor or anything. I had my midwife appointment this morning and everything went well -- I go back next Tuesday as long as he hasn't come before then! I feel like all the important stuff is done and ready and the rest of the things I want to do around here are all cosmetic. So if he comes soon, he comes, and if he waits, he waits. I'm patient and enjoying our time together. : )

On a separate note, "summer" is over now that my friends are starting back to work -- this is very bittersweet for me! I've already imagined all my Sharon peeps getting their classrooms ready, listening to Amy's no-doubt inspirational back-to-school speech, and getting ready to meet new students on Tuesday night. I love that night-before-school-starts excitement, the catching up with everyone, and just walking the halls of our home away from home for 10 months out of the year. Good luck to everyone and know that I'm there in spirit!

~ Jessi


  1. In addition to everything that you are so good at, you are such a great writer! I am so proud of you...I love reading about your days.... thank you so much for sharing... it definitely brightens my day.... I love you dearly, mom

  2. Hi Jessica,

    Hope you are doing well, see you soon I think :)