2014 11 Family Letter – Taiwan and Turkeys

Family,

Is it really December already?? I, unfortunately, am writing the family letter solo this month, since Oliver is out of the country for two weeks. Two weeks, meaning half a month, meaning 1/6th of the total time we have been married! Meaning too long.

Let’s see…the fresh event on my mind is Thanksgiving! As you may remember, there was a furry of chatter all over the NE area of the US because of that HUGE snowstorm that was scheduled to hit on Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving.  Most of my coworkers got out of town the night before and told me I was nuts for planning on driving into the storm on Wednesday evening. Well, apparently mother nature had enough of her fluffy winter tears, because by the time Oliver came to pick me up at work (yes, I like to show him off when I can 😉 Especially in winter! Who doesn’t love a man in a sweater?) the storm had 90% dried up, and we made it to my parents’ house in record time with NO traffic. We brought Catherine along for the ride and we all spent the holiday in our almost-empty-because-of-the-move house, and it was grand. Christopher flew in from BYU and impressed us with his relentless work ethic, basically preparing for finals the entire weekend. It was fun to see O with my family, making breakfast with his cute morning hair and playing games with Sarah. I think they like having a new brother. Anyway, we spent Thanksgiving morning running in the Turkey Trot, the afternoon cooking and eating, and the evening all piled in the basement under dozens of cozy blankets watching a movie. We were brave enough to venture into the city on Black Friday (not for shopping!) and again…no traffic!! The brave ones went ice skating at Rockefeller Center and we walked up and down 5th Avenue that evening looking at the dazzlingly beautiful window displays.  We pointed out some stars, like Harry Winston and FAO Schwartz to Catherine. And a personal favorite, well, as they say…scatter my ashes at Bergdorf’s! Swoon. We also went sledding on the golf course, babysat for a cute little family, and made hot cider.  My dad was gracious enough to drive us back to D.C. and we stopped by Princeton on the way. Oliver played tour guide while we snuggled up and strolled around campus.  It’s always a dream to go back and visit our favorite place, and I think Catherine and my dad loved it almost as much. Plus, being on campus was the kick I needed to buckle down and get studying for that Series 7 and CFP exam ugh 🙁 Dad got to see our little apartment and thanked Oliver for “taking care of his daughter” 🙂 (Which is a great improvement from saying “Please, take my daughter!” by mistake when we were engaged…hahahahah….)

A couple of bad things about O’s endless Taiwan trip…

-Missing his connection and being re-routed through Hong Kong
-Me being all by my lonesome
-Lost luggage, courtesy of United

A couple of good things about O’s endless Taiwan trip…

-Per diem that pays for five grad school apps! Hooray!
-On the flight through Hong Kong O sat next to a man who does Venture Capital for Defense Technology… exactly what he wants to do
-My family coming to visit, to make up for being all by my lonesome

So, all in all… the good more than makes up for the bad 🙂 I am eagerly awaiting his return.

Earlier this November O & I spent a bit of time working away from home.  He headed to Hawaii (Pacific Command) for a week, and I was off to Chicago for a work conference. Quite the contrast: 80 degrees and sunny vs 20 degrees and snowing with harsh wind. Hard to say who got the better deal…hah-hah. I can’t speak to the classified whatever it may be that he was doing, but my conference was busy enough to distract me  from a week without O and the location was superb.  Unfortunately, the morning I left for Chicago we were having a photo shoot at work for a magazine, so in my hurry to look polished and primped that morning, I completely forgot to pack a coat. Rookie mistake. Well, the inside of the hotel was really nice! Suffice it to say I don’t think I will ever be moving to the windy city. Brr.

My mom came up to visit for a few days while O was gone, before I left for Chicago, and I LOVED the company. She also brought Theodorable on the road trip. He sat in her lap the whole drive! We smuggled him up into my pet-free apartment in a duffel bag, and poor Theo was so scared of being away from home he stayed in that duffel bag and refused to come out. Finally, we made him a nest/tent of blankets where he hid for hours and went on an eating strike.  I guess Theo is a home body. It was great to have my Mom come over to the apartment (which is now furnished with a lovely rug for our cold toes!). I think she was relieved to see we are living in a safe, clean apartment and getting along in the married real world.

The seven, Georgetown, and O’s grad school applications continue to be either in front of us while we work on them, or in the back of our minds festering with urgency.  It is overwhelming. Just trying to keep our heads above water, here. Can’t wait to be done!

Love,
Oliver and Rebecca

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