The Weekend Gallery of Miscellany....

"What's going on with her? Isn't she moving or something?" 

Yes. Yes, I am. Virtually everything in my life is in major transition right now, which is why I haven't been blogging lately. So here are a few random tidbits for those of you who were kind enough to stop by and see if the drought has ended.... Thanks for coming back. 

1. The last few weeks have been a whirlwind.... Virtually everything I own (except for what fits in our suitcases and a few items I'm leaving behind in storage) is on the long boat to China Spain. Our movers came and packed us up a few weeks ago, and that part of the process has been much less stressful than I anticipated. 

I really didn't know how I would handle having total strangers go through every nook and cranny in my home. I envisioned having a nervous breakdown as I watched them handling, packing, and driving off with my stuff (to be handled by who-knows-how-many-more people as it made its way overseas), but I guess I'm mellowing out as I get older. I managed to stay not only calm, but downright chippy throughout the pack out. My attitude then and now is, "Well, if it gets stolen or the boat sinks, at least I won't have to clean/dust/organize it anymore.....or scrape off those ten thousand inventory stickers. And we'll always have Wal-Mart." 

Of course, I don't mean to make light of people who lose everything they own in fires or other disasters.... There are certainly a few things with sentimental value that I'd hate to lose, but living out of four suitcases for the last three weeks has made me realize that I really have a lot more stuff than I need or even want. I see a ruthless purge in my future, once we get settled in....

2. What HAS been stressful, however, is the never-ending red tape involved in any government-related venture.... and ours is kind of complicated. We're new to the military, going from reserves to active duty status, experiencing our first PCS (Permanent Change of Station) from a non-military starting location, (Josh is) finishing school and starting a new career, AND moving overseas, all at once. Oh yeah, and Josh is away at ODS (Officer Development School) for 5 weeks. Throw in medical and dental screenings, passport and ID card applications, a change of address, selling/buying/shipping vehicles, making travel arrangements (with a dog), and now - surprise! - four impacted wisdom teeth that need to be removed before leaving (poor Josh!), and that's where we're at. The only thing keeping me from putting my head through a wall is a description of what Dickens dubbed "The Circumlocution Office" in his novel, Little Dorrit. (Follow the link for an excerpt if you haven't read it.) Somehow, just knowing that another person found the never-ending-paperwork of bureaucracy as ludicrous as I do makes me feel better, and it stifles the urge to barricade myself in a government building and threaten to feed their forms one by one through a shredder every ninety minutes if they don't just give me my rotten stamp of approval and let me move on with my life. 

That's right.... we read to know we are not alone. 

3. The up side to all of this is that I have gotten to spend some quality time with my parents, brother, nephew, and nieces while Josh has been gone. It's been fun.... and I've had lots of "help" from my youngest niece (well, youngest on my side, that is). 

Helping me clean... 

4. Poor Josh. He's at ODS right now, getting up at 0-dark-thirty to do push ups, get yelled at, shovel snow, have his ironing-skills scrutinized, and other such festivities. Today he got a little free time for the first time in two weeks, and something super-exciting happened to him.... 

You know this SUPER-FAMOUS photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt taken on V-J Day in Times Square? 

Josh bumped into the kiss-stealing sailor at dinner last night! Here he is with him... 


Mr. Mendonsa was kind enough to sit down with Josh and his classmates and tell them the story behind the photo and a little about his experiences in the Navy. You know what's funny? Mr. Mendonsa's wife (they weren't married yet at the time, obviously) is in the iconic photo too, but she's not the one being kissed! She's in the background, behind the kissing couple. (Click on the link above to read more about it.) 

Cool beans. I think I'm going to send Josh a copy of the photo and see if he can get it autographed for me.... So cool! I remember talking about that photo in my History of Photography class in college - I can't believe Josh actually got to meet him! A little piece of history.... He was out celebrating his 90th birthday. 

5. The Shamrock Shake is back at McDonald's. And there was great rejoicing in all the land.... 

Well, that's all I've got for now! I'm hoping to work on a creative project next week, and I'll try to have some pictures of that to share with you soon. And of course, I'll keep you posted on our moving-to-Spain adventures. 

Thanks for stopping by! 


  1. Re: Point #1 - I believe this is why I came back from overseas and did a ruthless purge on our house. Multiple times. After we (two people) lived out of 4 suitcases (and, in one instance, 2 suitcases for 6 months), I realized that we have WAY.TOO.MUCH.STUFF. It's insane.

    When you live with it all the time, for some reason, you can't imagine not having it. And yet, when you live without it for weeks (or months), you realize that you can, in fact, live without it all. Oh sure, sometimes I missed a certain kitchen utensil or a specific item of clothing, but life does go on. When we came back from Lesotho where I wore the same 5 outfits for 5 months, my closet almost put me into shock. ;)

    I guess it's all about perspective.

    On the flip side, I hope you are safety reunited with your items - even if you go on to purge! :) Great to read your update - very cool about Josh meeting the guy! Sorry about the wisdom teeth (I'm so glad mine are gone!). :(

    1. Yes, I know what you mean. It always stresses me out to go to restaurants that have pages and pages of menu items rather than just about ten things to choose from.... and the same principle could be applied to the stuff in one's home, I suppose. It's stressful having too many options to choose from.... (and too much stuff to organize, store, clean, etc.) Simplifying is becoming more and more appealing to me the older I get.

      Josh had his surgery today (the 28th), and it went okay. He's swollen and pretty sore, of course... We're praying for a quick and easy recovery with no complications. Like we needed one more thing going on right now!

  2. Great story! Yes, you should definitely get him to sign a photo for you. Good and happy providence in Spain.

  3. I have been off blog-land for some time! I didn't know you too were moving over seas. We have been here in the UK now since July, end. I just laughed in sympathy over this posting....SO get it! I have dreams of going back to CT and having a major purge of all my things! Spain is a country I would love to try living in for a while....hope you are settling in quickly! God bless and keep you all close!


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