Sunday, September 18, 2011

Celebrating my birthday....

my birthday is seriously my favorite time of year.  sometimes i feel silly getting so excited about this time of year b/c it seems a bit narcissistic.  i love being able to celebrate with friends and family.

paul pulled out all the stops this weekend to celebrate.  he booked two nights at the sofitel here in phnom penh and we stayed there the whole time.  it was similiar to our cruise experience but we weren't on the sea nor were we going anywhere.  it was fabulous.

he picked my up from school on friday in the pouring rain with three orangey colored roses in hand.  it was super sweet.  then we went to the sofitel.  he had already checked in and taken our bags, so there was nothing to carry or do once we arrived.  we went up to the room which was amazing.  my favorite part of staying in really nice hotels is the bed---usually always super comfy and fluffy with crisp, clean white linens...yes, please.  the shower/tub area was fantastic too.  it was all in one enclosed room---shower and tub which were separate but in one area that one might get all wet if desired.  the design was nice.  we went down to le bar in the lobby for a before dinner cocktail.  after our fancy drink we went to la coupole which is the main dining area for the seafood buffet. was crazy and fun.  one of the best things i ate was the tempura veggies---light, crispy, wonderful batter on green, red, and yellow bell peppers---seriously like eating candy they are so yummy.    i ate way too back up the room and seriously considered throwing up to make myself feel better.  it was quite rough.  i went straight to bed instead which was about 8ish.  nuts but it felt good.   

on saturday, we woke up and went down to breakfast in the same dining area.  i had learned my lesson the night before so i took it slow this time around.  i had an omelette, some fresh bread with butter and jam, yummy grilled bacon and the best fresh orange juice i have ever had.  it tasted like mushed up oranges.  so good.  the coffee was also nice.  we went back up to the room to hang out.  i ended up napping some more while paul did some work.  i also took advantage of the large shower and tub.  it is so nice to have a tub that fits and is lovely.  i miss that for sure.  the shower is nice and spacious too which is something we don't have at our apartment.  the cotton waffle robes were a highlight too.  it's the small things for me.  :)  i read some and just napped much of the day.  no plans or expectations on what we did.  it was quite nice to not have anywhere to go.  about 2pm we got hungry and went down to the le bar in the lobby for afternoon drinks and lunch.  paul and i both had a caesar salad.  on our way back to the room we popped into the chocolate shop for a light dessert---strawberry and caramel chocolates.  YUM!  we ate those while we rested in the room some more.  we both napped after our late lunch.  dinner was at 6pm at the italian restaurant in the hotel.  we have eaten there before and loved it, so i was looking forward to yummy italian food.  we tried new things which paul liked much better than i did.  i did enjoy the salad we ordered which was fresh arugula with small cherry tomatoes and shaved parmesan tossed in a balsamic olive oil....yum!  the two pasta dishes were okay, but nothing i would try again.  we topped off dinner with tiramisu which they do well.  back to the room to watch some of the tv paul brought with us--the big c and the last episodes of rome.  it was quite nice to lay in a comfy bed while watching television.  when the tv was finished we were hungry again so we ordered room service.  the nicest room service ever.  they wheeled the table in all set and fancified.  i had to admit when the guy left i had to check under the table for spies and audio bugs like in the movies.  the whoel rolling table reminded me of something out of a bourne movie.  too funny.  paul and i giggled about it.  dinner #2 was nice and it was fun to eat at this nice table in our room.  a nice fun way to end the day.

sunday morning i slept in some more....surprise, surprise!  paul brought me up a coffee and chocolate croissant from the dining room to wake me up.  :)  he's the best.  then we just chatted and began to get ready and pack up before our brunch reservations and check out.  we watching some cnn which is also a treat since we don't have cable at home.  the sunday brunch is a big deal and came with good reviews.  we were hoping for the best, but would not be shocked if it was a let down.  we tend to prepare for the let down as many buffets we have had that are raved about are not our thing.  we walked into the dining room and paul had already selected our table.  as we walked over to it, i realized that paul had gone above and beyond---he had invited our close friends to join us and celebrate my birthday with us.  it was the perfect ending to our mini vacation!  paul is so good at knowing what makes me happy.  there were eight of us total and the two couples with kiddos had even gotten sitters to make it an all adult affair.  it was sooo nice and a pleasant happy surprise!  i love paul and my friends here.  huge heart swell as i sat down to share a meal with all of them.  :)  the brunch was great and much better than we expected.  everyone was thrilled and happy which makes me happy too.  i got some kind, sweet notes from them which paul requested instead of presents.  he knows my love language.  it was so perfect!  i cherish kind words more than anything.

after lunch and checking out, paul went to the coffee shop to work while i had a manicure and pedicure at my favorite place.  i came home to nap and settle back into real life while he worked much of the afternoon. we had take out sandwiches for dinner with J & T from downstairs and then watched some modern family.  always so nice to laugh out loud....i love this show for that.

it was a great weekend and i feel so rested going in to this week.  i have the best husband who does his best to make me feel loved and special.  God is so good to have brought us together.  

Thursday, September 15, 2011

yes, i am alive and well....taken a break and back on the horse....

so here we's almost mid september and i find myself being inspired to blog and share on the world wide web again.

we had a FABULOUS summer holiday!  it was quite nice to be away even though it was a long time.  we went to tokyo, seoul, seattle, a cruise to alaska, and then to houston.  a fun time was had by both of us.

the school year has started and it's going well.  i am quite pleased with my change--i moved down to teach a mixed class of 2nd and 3rd graders.  it's taken about this long (31 days) to find our groove as a class and feel like we are hitting the stride now.  i love the kiddos i have and find so many times through out the day when they just make me smile.  i have 17 of them which a nice number too.  i hope that it continues to go well and i continue to grow as a teacher.

five days from now i turn 34 which is quite hard to believe.  i feel younger than 34.  it's interesting to think that i potentially have completed about 1/3 of my life.  weird, exciting, morbid, and a bit scary.  i am looking forward to spending time with paul and our friends here in phnom penh.

we are having a mini vacation this weekend here in phnom penh.....we are going to stay at the sofitel for two nights to "get away" and spoil ourselves.  i am excited and looking forward to "unplugging" for the weekend.  paul knows how to make me happy for sure.  he is amazing.

on the 23rd we are going to thailand for a week long holiday.  i am also super excited about this trip.  we are revisiting a favorite in northern thailand called chang mai.  really great food, fabulous used book shops (a whole street of them) and some funky, eclectic shopping.  we will spend the first part of the week in chang mai then on wednesday we will fly down to bangkok for some big city fun (read lots of shopping for things we cannot get here in phnom penh).  yes, i have created a list of things to look for and get while there.  it should be fun.

we have a new addition at our house....her name is pip squeak.  she is now just over 2 months old and is a lovely creamy and orange color.  we should have considered dreamsicle as a name b/c that is what her coloring reminds me of.  she is spunky, fiesty and cuddly, not to mention too cute.  here's a pic of her in action with one of her favorite toys---yarn....

in other big news i have signed up to run/walk a 3K in december.  i cannot believe i have really done it, but it's true.  i have always wanted to do something like this, but never had the motivation.  i am not quite sure about the motivation at this point, but i am signed up and going.  it will take place on sunday, dec 4th in siem reap and should be quite nice of a run/walk.  it will be out near angkor wat so the scenery will be cool to look at.  at this time of year the weather has cooled quite a bit for here so it should be fab weather to be outside doing physical activity.  for now, i need to start my couch to 5K and get moving on a regular basis.  this is my goal for now.  the couch to 5K is 9 weeks and there is 12 until race day.  so my planned start date for training is monday, oct 3rd.  prayers are appreciated .... i know i will be proud and happy once i have done it, but at the moment i am still not feeling quite sure about my decision.