Month: October 2015

Linked and loved

After 4+ years, Adele has finally released a new single, and a new album is coming out next month! Her previous album, 21, was such a powerful album and it remained No. 1 in the Billboard 200 for 24 weeks, the most ever for a woman. It was an album about heartbreak, and it helped me with a lot I was going through at that time.

I’m excited to listen to more 25 tracks (the album will be out Nov. 20) and see what this is about!

My favorites from the web this week:

  1. Adele, ‘Hello’ from the new album 25,  out November 20.
  2. The City of Seattle is experiencing some mayor growth in recent times and, originally, they looked at San Francisco to follow their steps. But then they realized that SF was NOT a good model to follow, so now Seattle is trying to decide how to grow but keep its essence on the way there.
  3. I’m in love with these John Vogel chairs from West Elm. I wish I could justify the need for new dining chairs…
  4. A HUGE win for prisoners and their friends and families! It will now be easier for prisoners to communicate with their loved ones, with lower phone rates.
  5. Unfortunately for us, we still have to negotiate more than just a salary in our workplace. I am in no need for maternity leave, but do think that something desperately needs to be done to address this issue.

Source: Adele.com

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Lessons learned

I’m back from my ultra-quick trip to Argentina, where I – finally! – got my visa and also visited some doctors and spent some nice time with my family, especially with my grandfather (who is 80-something years old and misses his wife – my grandmother – terribly since she passed in 2012).

Going back is always hard. Family draws you in and it’s hard to say good-bye, but I also noticed other things that I miss, and things that I definitely not miss. Here is my list:

  1. I do miss my family, especially now that it’s getting warmer (it’s going into Summer in the Southern Hemisphere) and weekends are getting busier. I especially enjoy the fact that my parents have a nice house with a big yard and entertaining area, so it is great for family (and friends) gathering on the weekends.
  2. I definitely miss the food. I managed to eat everything I wanted that I can’t get here, like empanadas, gnocchi, milanesas and tartas.
  3. I do not miss my fellow Argentineans. I felt like as if everyone is always on a rush for everything, angry at themselves and hating their lives. Example: I was at the eye doctor and there was an older lady before me that was hard of hearing. She was asking the receptionist every 5 – 10 minutes if she had been called, only to be responded every single time with a “calm down ma’am.” How hard is it to just say “ma’am, when we are ready for you, I will come up and get you, don’t worry” ? And that is only a small example…
  4. And almost along the same lines… people complaining about how hard their lives are and how easy I have it because I live in the United States. Look, OK, so maybe I am better off, I have a great job and a nice place to live, but we are also missing out on a lot of things back home: family, friends, services ($10 weekly manicures, help around the house with chores, accessible day care for children – not that I need it yet -, etc). Sometimes it’s about putting everything on a balance and prioritizing what you care about the most. For us, right now, is having a steady job where we know we are going to grow, maybe save some money and then we’ll see. Other people prefer to be close to family. But again, it’s about personal balances and trade offs.
  5. I absolutely DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT miss driving a car – any car – in Buenos Aires. It’s chaos. Cars everywhere. Motorcycles everywhere. I get violent and yell. So no more driving for me, thank you very much.

All in all, though, it was a good trip. I got to spend some time with a couple friends from college and my best friend from high school. I spent time with my uncle and grandpa, and with my parents. It’s hard to leave but it feels nice to be back. Too bad about the weather…

Source: NuNomad

One year cativersary!

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One year ago today, Benito, our orange domestic medium hair, joined our small family!

I always knew that I wanted to have a cat but my husband was never really convinced. He has been – and I think will always be – a dog person.

Before we got Benito, we had been talking about getting a cat since moving to Michigan. At the time, we were both in school and uncertain of where we were going next, so we delayed the process of running to the shelter to adopt and waited until we were settled.

On October 18, 2014, we intently drove to the Seattle Humane Society in Bellevue to “just look” at the kitties there. We had stopped by the previous week but could not find a parking spot, so we left without even getting out of the cat. On this rainy Saturday morning, we found the last spot in the small parking lot.

We walked into the building and realized it was free adoptions weekend! Not that we cared, but it was a nice incentive. We checked in, filled some paperwork and then started to look at cats. When we talked about cats, my husband insisted on a young one, not set in its ways. So we headed over to a small room with about 6 or 7 different kittens.

And there he was. Sitting on one of those kitty condos, looking out the glass door. Every time something moved, he turned to look at it. He went up and down, moving around and inspecting every single corner of the room. The attendant outside told us that Benito (then-named ‘Tito’) had arrived to Seattle the previous day from a shelter in Olympia.

Apparently, he was found on the street some months prior and was about 6-months-old. We knew he was for us. Ginger, curious and young.

We entered the room to meet him and all he wanted to do was play with a tassel hanging from my coat. It was a done deal. We took him home and we have been hooked every since. And to think that we had gone the week before… He wasn’t even there that week!

My husband says he is the best dog in the shape of a cat he has ever had.

These are some of the things he likes to do:

  • He plays fetch with a little foam ball
  • As soon as we walk in the door, we tells us all about his day
  • He licks his lips when we are prepping his wet food, and patiently waits, sitting down, for us to set the bowl on the floor
  • He sits on command
  • He hates stuffed animals and attacks everything that is on sight
  • He likes cheap toys – as in used zip ties or empty candy wrappers cheap
  • Benito sleeps with us on the bed, usually in between my legs. When he is ready to sleep, he will scratch my legs, asking me to open them so that he can use that space is his little enclosed bed

We are head over heels with this furry child. Every day he gives us a little glimpse of what our family can be in the future. My husband is definitely the authority figure, Benito pretty much laughs at me when I scold him. But we love him very much and hope that he stays with us for a long, long time.

Happy cat-iversary, Benito!

Photo © Maria Rigou for Groundhog Design