Monday, March 31, 2008

Moving Day

Tomorrow we're moving from our current house to a new one that's only 6 houses down. There are a few different reasons for this, and the new house is an answer to all those!

Today we've packed up pretty much everything in record time; it only took about 4 hours. I was thinking back to all the places I've lived and times I've moved, it's really quite ridiculous. This will be the 14th place I've lived in the last 10 years, and (including all the times I've gone from college to home for the summers, and back to college again) I've physically moved all my possessions 18 times. Nineteen if you count moving half of our possessions into storage before we came to Scotland.

I say "I've" moved my possessions, but that is actually very inaccurate. The one person who has been there for every single move is my Dad; my Mom has been there for almost all of them, and James was there for all the ones since we started dating. So really, there's no way I could've moved myself even once without those people. Thanks you three, and to the many others who have helped us move!

Sunday, March 30, 2008


Scots use this word as as a descriptor when one is exhausted to the point of uselessness. Shattered would be an accurate way to describe my state at the moment.

The past week has been hectic, inspiring, stressful, encouraging, joyful, sad, exciting, and jam-packed; overall, completely awesome. We just got back from dropping off the 12 team members from our church in Richmond at the Edinburgh airport. I'm in desperate need of a nap.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

The American's are Here!

I've been MIA. It's because there are TWELVE Americans here in Dornoch! Those 12 Americans are all from our home church in Richmond, Virginia. And of those 12, they are all awesome friends of ours, one of them is James' mom! It's absolutely amazing. The only thing that would make it better is if my family was here too. After they leave and I have more than ten minutes to sit down in one place, I'll update you about what we've been doing and how fabulous the week has been!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


That's how people here refer to air conditioning, or A/C as we would say. Air-con isn't used much, actually next to never. I was surprised to find that our car doesn't have it, neither do any cars that I've ever ridden in. My spoiled American question was, "well what do you do if there's a really hot day?." One answer would be, roll down the window. The Scottish answer would be, "what does a really hot day feel like?" Most houses don't have it either.

I went to a gym tonight with a couple of friends. During my introduction session, the girl showing us around told us all about the air-con and how it helps to keep the place from smelling. She also made sure we knew not to open the windows, or we'd just be negating the effects of the air-con and wasting money. I realized that even though that's common sense for people who live in a society used to air-con, it probably wouldn't cross the minds of people here.

It makes me wonder how many things are common sense to Scots that I have no idea about. I'll never know exactly how many times I've made a fool of myself when i didn't have a clue about something that is common knowledge. Scots are just too kind to call me out on these things.

It was St. Patrick's Day?

I didn't even realize yesterday was St. Patrick's day until I saw mention of it in a Richmond, Virginia newspaper online. If I were in America, there's no way I could get past the day and forget it was time to drink green beer, pinch every person not wearing green, or dress up like a leprechaun.

I would have thought that being so close to Ireland, it would be a fairly popular celebration here in Scotland. I guess not.

Maybe there are more Irish people in America than in Scotland. Or maybe America is overtaken by commercialism, or has more people that need an excuse to have a party. Even though I've never done much to celebrate the day, I miss at least acknowledging that it was St. Patrick's Day, especially with a last name like Murphy.

Monday, March 17, 2008

just a few more London photos

I know, I know, it's been a month since we left for our vacation to London, and I'm still talking about it. The only excuses for the numerous posts about this trip are that it was fabulous, and vacations for us are few and far between. If you're bored of it, just hold out for a few days until I update you on something current.

This guy was guarding Parliament. I was pretty intimidated, but I guess not too much since I felt comfortable asking to take his picture.

It's difficult to see in this photo, but toward the top left of this rack of meat, there was a bright orange thing. I have no idea what it was, but it was a bit frightening.

How cool is it that there is a Nags Head in London?

This place was a.mazing. It's the entrance to Westminster Cathedral, not to be confused with Westminster Abbey (the cathedral is Roman Catholic, the abbey is Church of England). The inside is covered in mosaics that were just unbelievable. I'd show you pictures of them, but if I took any they would've kicked me out.

The End.

Friday, March 14, 2008

When Stress is Funny

James has decided he wants me to be his hairdresser. This totally stresses me out. To date, I've given him three haircuts; each one is preceded by about a week of him begging me to do it and me procrastinating and making excuses. He's all into how much money this will save us over the next however many years, especially if we have a gaggle of little boys and I cut their hair too. While I'm all for saving money, I've never been inclined to be a beautician in the past, and don't have any sort of urge to now.

Today was a haircut day. I get so stressed out about it, thinking I'm going to screw up, that I can't hold in my nervous laughter. I have to keep telling him, "I can't help laughing, it's not because I've messed up, I just can't help it" Cutting his hair totally gives me the giggles.

You should see the scissors I have to use, it's the tiny kind you'd use to cut nose hairs with. You'd laugh too.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Month Six

In a way it's hard to believe today marks 6 whole months in Scotland, but in a way I'm wondering how it hasn't been 12 months. Isn't time funny like that?

That means we've reached the 25% mark of the time we've committed to be here. Unbelievable. It helps me put into perspective how much stuff can happen in a short period of time, as well as how fast time can get away from you.

I'm stoked to be here, but I'm also stoked to be going home. It's so bizarre to, at the same time, be glad that the time has passed quickly, knowing we're that much closer to going home, and also be disappointed that it's flying by, knowing we're that much closer to leaving here. Kinda makes my head go in circles if I think about it too much.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Best thing I've heard all day.

"I wish I could have jelly beans for peas, lollies (lollipops) for broccoli, and chocolate for bacon. I do like bacon, I just wish bacon was made out of chocolate."
-said by a 7 year old boy from Dornoch

Monday, March 10, 2008

An Eye?

They call it the London Eye, but it looks like a ferris wheel to me. This monstrosity was built for the millennium and over 3 million people take a ride on it every year. Apparently the view from one of the capsules is incredible but we didn't want to pay $60 to ride on a ferris wheel.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Babies All Over the Place

I was thinking today how I know tons of people who are pregnant with their first baby right now. I guess I'm just at that age where people start having babies. It was like that year after we got married; we called it, "the year of the wedding." We went to 12 weddings that year.

My one friend's due date is tomorrow, so she could be in labor as I type! She and I have been friends since the third grade.

This friend is due later in March. Here are some fun photos of us from our crazy high school and college days.

She has about a month and a half to go. We were in a Bible study together in Richmond, now neither of us live there!

This is a couple we met when we were going through training in Belgium to come to Scotland. They're in Spain.

There's a second couple who we met the same way, they're in Spain too and they're about 3 months ahead of the couple above.

Then there's a girl I went to high school with; we played soccer and field hockey together. She's one of the funniest people I know; she she's about 3 months along I think.

My pharmacist in Richmond, aka the best pharmacist ever, is due in June. She's been a gem and helped me stay seizure free by sending me my meds every momth.

I don't know this couple in the real world, but I've been reading about them for a while and pray for them all the time so I feel like I kinda know them, even though they have no idea who I am.

There are even three ladies I know here in Dornoch who are pregnant, but not with their first. Also, there's a couple who just had their first baby.

Babies are such a wonderful miracle. I'm so excited for all these ladies and their husbands!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

London Bridges

There are tons of bridges in London. I would guess this one is the most recognizable, it's called the London Tower Bridge:

This was inside one of those long passageways that you see in the other picture between the two towers.

This was in the old engine room when they used to use hydaulic pumps to open the drawbridge. It was pretty impressive.

We were inspired by this example of dress at the time of the bridge's construction and are considering changing our style, what do you think?