So, clearly, "check back in a few days" didn't happen. Oops. Sorry.
That tends to be the habit in my life right now. Let me explain the road that led me here so far this year:
In May, I graduated with my AA degree.
Then The Man and I went to Ireland to celebrate my dad's wedding to my new stepmom. It was an amazing trip! Definitely the trip opportunity of a lifetime. I can't wait to save up enough to go back. It is a beautiful country and we had a great time everywhere we went. After the wedding, my dad's sister and brother-in-law flew home, as did my Godfather (the Best-man in the wedding). The Man and I split off from the newlyweds - because really, who wants to spend time with anyone on their honeymoon, let alone your parents, gross! - and headed to Northern Ireland. We did a day-long tour of Giant's Causeway and saw the gorgeous northern oceanic coast. We ended up at the Dunluce Castle, which is supposed to be the most romantic castle in all of Northern Ireland, and rumored to be a large part of C.S. Lewis' inspiration for the Chronicles of Narnia series (one of my faves!). Here, we arrived as boyfriend-girlfriend, and left engaged! It was great! We spent the night in the most bombed hotel in the world. The next day, we went on a very long walking tour of the Titanic Shipyards, seeing everything from the engineering/design rooms and drawing rooms to the actual fabrication yards and where it was set into the sea. There is an amazing visitors center there, also. I could have spent an entire week looking around Belfast. On the way back to our hotel, we found an International Farmer's Market of sorts, right in front of the City Hall. After this Northern Ireland adventure came to an end, we spent 2 full days in Dublin, sightseeing and living a little like locals. Lots of walking and plenty of pubs. We came back home to have burgers with some of our most-missed family. It was an amazing 2 weeks!
We spent about a month unpacking and catching up on everything. Ok, who am I kidding, we're still not entirely unpacked... I guess if I take that last souvenir out of the luggage, it'll mean we're actually back for good, and I'm not willing to give in yet!
I got a job working at the Mall of America, with Man. It's a fun part-time job, and I get to talk a lot, which is always a good thing. It's a lot quieter around the house at the end of the day, at least.
Then, on July 12, everything went into a tail spin. Don't panic. I know a lot of bad stories start like that. This one is a good tail spin, if that actually can exist. I got a call from a friend of mine that she needed help taking care of her daughter. I've been in that position before, babysitting on a whim. I hadn't seen the Kid in a while, so I jumped at the chance. Picked her up from day camp and had a girls' night in a hotel. It was fun. So, what's the tail spin part? Well, it's 5 months later, and Kid lives with us now. Things twisted and turned a lot, and it ended up being the best arrangement for the family, so we've taken in a 12-year-old daughter. "Adopted" her, for all intents and purposes, that term works easiest. It's been a bumpy road and an instant immersion into parenthood.
School started in August for Man and I. I finished more ASL classes just last week. Kid started at middle school for her first time. New school, new friends, new drama. She's a cheerleader (go ahead, rub it in, my kid's a cheerleader, yeah, yeah, yeah...) and she's great at it! She actually goes to school with one of my nephews, which is great because his parents are willing to help out in a pinch. Gotta love family!
Now, Christmas Break is upon me, and I'm finally able to sit down and breathe. Knitting will start up today, with a hat that's about a year late... I'm reading a new mystery, too. Finally getting into the swing of things in this new crazy life, but you know I love it.
Oh, and did I mention we're looking for a place for the 3 of us to live? Ahhh, my life is a never-ending adventure....
Catch ya later,