Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It's the little things...

Sometimes when I am in HK I feel like a tourist. I almost think of it as an extended vacation. I know this will pass with time as I get more and more used to things. I will learn to take the mini-busses that have no real route or schedule. I will walk the streets with confidence that I only need to “have” my map and not pull it out all the time to triple check that I am going in the right direction. I think I will feel I “belong” when I know every meeting place the American Women’s Association (AWA) has in its bag of tours.

There are things that I miss buying from the store. Certain day to day products that are difficult if not impossible to find in Hong Kong.

Enter Kirk

Kirk lives in downtown Seattle close to school. It’s Derrick who lives in the house and takes care of the day to day world of cats and mail and cats and lawn and cats and basic house maintenance. (can you tell the cats are the number one priority in MY mind?)

Kirk’s BIG job is mail maintenance. He opens the mail every week, sorts it, goes over it with Corey and forwards the important things and makes sure we don’t miss any bills that need paying . That’s Kirk’s job with his Dad. As we have been here, the need to mail things over has decreased.

My need for my day in day out things has not decreased. I am sure I could learn to live without these things, but why should I when I have … Kirk.

Kirk’s job for me is to gather up items I miss desperately and have decided I can’t live without and mail them to me.

One of those “stuff the box as full as you can” jobs from USPS costs about $54 US dollars. What could I need that warrants that cost?

Let me tell you.

DAWN Dish Soap. The kitchens here are ridiculously small. With that in mind, the dishwasher’s name is “Kate”. Because of this, I need really good dish soap. After trying a couple different brands, I had Kirk buy me two bottles. When I am back in July, I will be at Costco buying the super-size.

Splenda Sweetener Packets: The cost of these are off the hook! I had a box in my pantry and it just seemed right to mail the rest over. I am NOT the kind of girl that goes from Starbucks to Starbucks pilfering these, so they made it into the box!

Moroccan Oil – This is for my hair. My hair has decided that FRIZZ is its new natural state. Ivy (new hair person for now) recommended this but it’s not available in HK. Amazon ROCKS.

Bare Escentuals’ Cleanser and Moisturizer – I can’t get this brand here. Thank heaven for Ulta and free shipping straight to the house. I have tried other things, but this works for me...and heck, a box was coming anyway right? It didn’t help that I left a full cleanser in Australia…I could have set that $28 dollars on fire I guess

This last one is big.

Anyone who has EVER sat in a WW meeting will realize how important this last part of the shipment is.


94% FF popcorn in the 5 cup size. – YAY TEAM!!!!! First, low fat or no fat is almost impossible to find here. Second, small sizes like this are REALLY impossible to find. I have two boxes of this in the pantry and did not think to bring them. I went through a phase of “stovetop: popcorn but that was not good for my weight…so I insisted that Kirk “fill the spaces” of my box with this. Corey was just crazed that I would have this sent over. But, those who have met me know I am Popcorn-A-Holic. I love the stuff and this keeps me in control.

Well, there is one item that did not make it in my box. But that’s OK. I will be able to talk about that and look forward to it when the next shipment is sent…or MAYBE, Corey can bring it to me when he is back at the house!

I opened this box and I swear it was like Christmas. I mean I was truly joyful.

I am not sure what else I will have sent over at some point. These items made me happy for the time being.

So, as I said…it’s the little things. I won't go into my "be appreciative" speech yet. I just did not know how the little things meant so much until I could not get them!

Where have you all been?

There were two things that made me realize how quiet my blog has been these last MONTH!

First, I opened it and have not posted since the end of March. Second, I went through my camera and saved the pics to my computer and realized how many things I have done and not written about!

I have been (probably over) analyzing why my writing stopped. Have I become uninspired? No. Have I become complacent? Maybe. Have I become just a little lazy? Probably. Have I become (relatively) comfortable? Definitely.

When I got here every single thing I did was new in some way. Even the mundane was new. Grocery shopping, navigating, communicating, finding new friends became a priority. These were the things to share.

Then as (gasp) three and a half months passed, day to day life kicked in, so things appeared a little less shiny and new.

Looking over my pictures revitalized me. I have done some pretty cool things (at least to me).

I won’t uber-blog and catch up in one day. However, I do want to get them down, because like every long vacation I’ve taken, if you don’t write it down, things fade away, and then they are gone.

I have actually had to go back to my calendar to look at the different activities I have done. I have tried to do two or three things a week to keep me out of the house.

It’s been pretty strange planning my world around social events and not around my family and running my WW meetings. I have read that there are plenty of ExPat wives that struggle with this transition. I can see it. I never made a lot of money, but what I did went towards Kari’s basketball world, what internet shopping I could muster, my 401K and (most importantly) getting my hair done.

SO, if you are still reading, I will get to updating.

Today I was supposed to take an “Adventure” Hike but I came back from Cebu with a niggly cold which has developed even after I took care of myself (stupid body). So, I am staying home, being even more quiet and looking forward to the Coke Plant Tour tomorrow!