Tag Archives: travel

2013 – A look back

This year has gone by so fast! But I can’t say I’ve been a very active blogger. I aim to change that come next year. But first – let’s take a look back. A very random month-by-month recap.

JANUARY

Still living in Oakridge, capital of nowhere Oregon. Going through the final steps of my application to once again become a permanent resident of these glorious states.

Callie - a pure delight!

Callie – a pure delight!

We were still fostering Callie from Greenhill. That included lots of training, walks (I think I became known as the crazy dog lady around town.. who knows. It was a weird place). I love and miss her. Last I heard she got adopted in Portland. Yay!

FEBRUARY

I was anxiously checking the mail every day because I needed a document to travel aboard while my I-405 application was pending. It’s called advance parole. Yep. Felt like a criminal. I’m not gonna bore you with government stuff (trust me, you don’t want to know) – but there IS a federal website you can knock yourself out with if you want to read.. say.. about all the different kinds of immigration applications. But I digress. I finally got my permission to leave the US and take a trip back to Norway. Oh joy! I celebrated my mom’s birthday, ate tons of food, hung out with friends and had a grand ole time.

We visited Kristiansund and ate ball!

We visited Kristiansund and ate ball!

My lovely view

My lovely view

Hung out with my bestie!

Hung out with my bestie!

And had a grand old time!

And had a grand old time!

MARCH

Got back to the States and the job hunt began. ‘Twas time to get back into the carousel! Because, ta da, my PAROLE also doubled as a work permit. Wohoo!

So I spent some days at Starbucks updating my resume, sending out e-mails and even joined Linked In. I also became a PERMANENT RESIDENT (meaning I got a Green Card!) Victory! Justice!

Yes, it's green. No, this is not me.

Yes, it’s green. No, this is not me.

APRIL

Got a job! Woot! And we packed up our belongings and hauled it all the 150 miles to Portland. And I’ve been great at keeping it weird. During my first week, I got a spider bite on my eye. Yep. So I was “the new girl with the eye”.

It became a LOT worse. But I am saving your eyes. No pun intended.

It became a LOT worse. But I am saving your eyes. No pun intended.

Where I work!

Where I work!

MAY

Worked a lot.. slept… worked. Tried to find my way around the city. I was completely turned around the first few weeks, even though I literally live 10 blocks away from work. Made new friends, kept keeping Portland weird (you know it) and tried not to melt away during the heat wave.

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The hood. There's a market every Saturday.

The hood. There’s a market every Saturday.

JUNE

Worked more.. tried to stay cool. It was really hot, you guys. Realllllllly hot. Good thing we have a roof top with a pretty nice view!

Rooftop view!

Rooftop view!

My attempt to be a domestic goddess.

My attempt to be a domestic goddess.

JULY

Got a promotion! New hours at work, meaning I didn’t have to do the graveyard shift  anymore. I got to see daylight! Take walks! Be a normal (…) human being! I got to socialize! Yay!

Summer BBQ

Summer BBQ

Hawthorne residents got it right!

Hawthorne residents got it right!

Beer fest, baby!

Beer fest, baby!

AUGUST

Ally came for a visit! She says it was to see me, but I think her REAL mission was to promote her business, Wish Dogs.. hehehe. Still love you, though!

She found her twin!

She found her twin!

And we walked... A LOT!

And we walked… A LOT!

Sporting my immigrant pride!

Sporting my immigrant pride!

SEPTEMBER

Hmm.. what did we do in September? This year has just really flown by so fast. And if you’re wondering why there are so few pics of Jamie, it’s because he’s back and forth all the time. Still looking for a job in Portland, but he’s still got job down in Eugene and Oakridge. Spread the word, peeps! He’s a real handyman that does excellent work!

He's also a rocker!

He’s also a rocker!

OCTOBER

Halloween, picking apples, visiting Sauvie Island. Good times.

Meow!

Meow!

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NOVEMBER

Supporting “Movember” of course!

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DECEMBER

Whoa! Already? This year has, like I previously stated, flown away. Been so busy with work that I’ve barely noticed the season change. I hope next year will be even better, and that I get to see my friends and my family more, and that we will all stay healthy and happy. Right now I’m so lucky to be in Norway for Christmas, and I will post some pictures later. It’s really stormy here, so not much snow (boo!) but nonetheless – it’s great that both Jamie and I get to be here. I get a much-anticipated visit from my BFF tomorrow! Bring on the wine and the snacks, and get ready for a LOUD time! Haha! 😀

A great find!

A great find!

Company Christmas party - this is one of the decent pics!

Company Christmas party – this is one of the decent pics!

The obligatory selfie

The obligatory selfie

Puppy snuggles at work! A definitive highlight!

Puppy snuggles at work! A definitive highlight!

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Californication

 

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Retro Riddle #2

Not a great turnout for my last RR post… I guess either my blog is super boring or none of you care to solve a puzzle. Jeez, people. Use your little nuggets! Well, last time I was the Dodgers Stadium in LA. This time, different country, different continent, different setting. So, amuse me if you please. Where am I here?

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Hola or “hei, hei” Norway!

I made it safe and sound, and I’m typing this from my childhood bedroom, which sadly has become my mom’s storing facility for everything. I’m tempted to notify TLC’s “Hoarders”, but at least I can find my bed still (And no, by no means is my mom a hoarder, she just doesn’t like to throw away stuff. She does, whoever, keep things neat and tidy). Except for my room. Oh well. I always love it here. Serenity, peace, stunning nature, no gun freaks and far away from this loco. Speaking of the latter, can Coulter’s Doc prescribe some fitting meds? Or perhaps modify the ones she’s on? Or better yet, a solitary confinement unit at the nearest nut house sounds fine! O lord, major digression.

Aigh, aight. I’m beyond tired. More details on my trip to come, folks!

Home sweet home!

Home sweet home!

Trying to look casual for my selfie, but looks like a freaky verson of Uncle Traveling Matt. You're welcome.

Exhausted at my layover in Copenhagen. Hoping a stiff one will perk me up.Trying to look casual for my selfie, but I look like a freaky verson of Uncle Traveling Matt. You’re welcome.

Hot.

Hot.

“We travel, some of us forever, to seek other states, other lives, other souls”

Well said, Anais Nin. These are some of the places I have yet to visit, but hope to cross some of the destinations of my bucket list this year.

Key West (via)

Key West (via)

Cuba (via)

Cuba (via)

Yellowstone (via)

Yellowstone (via)

New Zealand (via)

New Zealand (via)

Scotland (via)

Maine (via)

Maine (via)

Maui (via)

Maui (via)

The Bahamas (via)

The Bahamas (via)

Tuscany, Italy (via)

Tuscany, Italy (via)

Corsica (via)

Corsica (via)

Happy hump day!

Or happy Wine Wednesday, whatever you prefer. Just stopping by to tell you all that I’m alive and well. Sorry for the lack of blogging, but I’ve been busier than usual with stuff I’m not going to bore you with. Right now I’m enjoying a glass of crisp, cold pinot grigio after a visit to the local Chinese restaurant that just had their grand opening with the new owner. I think the whole city was there, including the mayor and his entourage. The new owner, by the way, was nowhere to be seen. He was busy cooking for a whole village all by his lonesome.

I’ve got a lot happening in the next few weeks, including a trip to my beloved homeland, Norway! Can’t wait to see my family and friends again! Yay! My combi card, proudly issued by USCIS arrived in the mail yesterday, so I’m once again one step closer to become a permanent PERMANENT resident of these glorious states.

Callie, my sweet foster dog is with me right now, and she wants y’all to know that she wants her FOREVER home, like stat! She’s tired of shuttling between the shelter and this house, even though she loves it here. So if you know someone who needs a faithful and feisty K9 companion, look no further. Callie is ready.

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2012 – A recap

Boy was 2012 a challenging year, with visa issues for Jamie  while I was working and studying full-time at the university. I didn’t feel like I was at a happy place in my life most of the time, it was a constant struggle. There is so much more to the story that I don’t wish to share here, it would just be too private. But all in all I had some wonderful moments as well, thanks to my dear friends and family who kept me sane through it all.

There are times I miss living in Bergen, Norway, but the timing was just off. Either that, or the universe gets a kick out of playing cruel jokes on me! Hats off to my parents, who have been there for me through everything. Traveling here, traveling there, working here, working there, moving 12 times during the past decade, back and forth like a restless caterpillar. I think sometimes I don’t allow myself to feel completely happy in case I jinx it. It’s a terrible feeling, and I have battled with anxiety for years now. Sometimes I think that if I am just content, something bad will come along and ruin it.

So I have decided not to allow myself to think like that anymore;  the universe has a plan for us all, and all we can do is ride along and do our best. That is why I will try my hardest not to  dwell on possible dangers around each corner.  I hereby choose to look forward to what 2013 will bring me.

Here is what made me happy in 2012:

* Getting a job at TV 2 in  Bergen so I could continue my career in broadcast journalism while living in one of the most beautiful cities in Norway. Added bonus: most of my friends lived there and it was happy times when we all got together. I cherished every moment.

* Finally making enough money to justify a college degree. Just saying.

* Living closer to my parents and my extended family. Getting to see my cousin’s newborn and be a part of her baptism. ❤

* Endless bus rides Bergen – Sykkylven.

* Being able to eat the foods I missed while living in the US.

* Attend lots and lots of family dinners, coffee parties or just hanging out with loved ones.

* Snuggling with my cats again.

* The view from our house in Sykkylven. It’s the most beautiful sight ever. It’s literally breathtaking.

* Seeing Jamie help my dad with work outside the house.

* Being able to attend my mom’s choir’s concerts.

* Free healthcare!

* Making new friends and finding out once and for all who were my true friends through it all.

* The smell in the springtime after a really heavy rainfall.

* Norwegian fauna.

* I discovered Californication and Entourage. Geez. What took me to long?

* I traveled back to the US again when the time was right. It was one of those things that made totally sense in the moment. Even though Jamie’s visa was approved two days later. Remember what I said about how ironic my life is sometimes? Obviously this is not meant to be easy.

* I got to be in Erik & Snehata’s wedding, and snuggle with Rudy again!

* I got to see new parts of America that I’d never seen before.

* I’m probably bragging a little, but I’m becoming quite the cook 🙂

* I fostered a dog from the local humane society.

* I gave more money to charity and homeless people.

Jamie and I are still together, we will celebrate our 6th anniversary on February 14th. We still don’t know where we will be at the end of this year. But we will make it fabulous.

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