Sunday, October 25, 2009

Well it's been an eventful week. Nicci's brother and sister-in-law arrived last Saturday and so we have been all together with Nicci's parents who had arrived the week before. The intention was for us to all go to Yosemite National Park but, for a reason I shall come on to explain, that idea got canned and so Peter & Liz, Paul and Tahrina have been visiting the city and seeing Alcatraz (things that Nicci and I are yet to properly do ourselves!) while I have been at work and Nicci has been 'taking it easy'.

So, for those of you who haven't heard: Nicci is pregnant! With Twins! (I know: double trouble!!) We've been longing for a child for the last 5 years, and the Lord has finally answered our prayers. We are very excited. However, last Sunday evening, there were signs that Nicci might have miscarried and we had a torrid night, waiting for the morning until we could go to the clinic for a scan. To our amazement and joy, both little treasures were still there with their little hearts beating away. But we were advised to rest, hence binning the Yosemite trip. In this morning's sermon our pastor mentioned something in passing about how beautiful Yosemite is. I guess we'll just have to wait for another time!

We had a further scare yesterday, so rest is still very much the order of the day. We have another visit to the clinic tomorrow morning and we hope to see those fellas still working away at it. We are very conscious of the Lord's strength in this situation and His timing has been amazing, what with Nicci's family being on hand to support. We're holding on by faith and, for those of you who pray, we would covet your prayers. It was a great reminder this morning from Revelation ch.4 to see things as they actually are, rather than how they appear. How they are is that God sits enthroned above all things - he is in control and we can trust Him!

This afternoon Paul, Tahrina and I had been looking forward to going to the Bridge School Benefit concert at MountainView's Shoreline Amphitheatre. The line-up included acts like Neil Young, Chris Martin from Coldplay, No Doubt, Sheryl Crow. I just pulled the tickets out of draw we'd put them in for safe keeping and discovered that our tickets were for Saturday 24th October. Yesterday. Bummer. It's hard to describe quite how you feel in moments like these! While it's a shame to have missed the concert, it does solve some of the issues that going to it entailed: Tahrina would have arrived late from her conference in San Francisco, I wasn't 100% down with the idea of leaving Nicci in bed while we went out and had fun, even though we'd lined up a friend to come and be with Nicci... So here's to a blank slate of a Sunday afternoon!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Yippeee! My parents arrived safely yesterday. It was great fun showing them round our appartment, taking them on a walk round the Bay and enjoying a lovely meal at Sam's in Half-Moon Bay overlooking the Pacific. We were thrilled that the pelicans laid on a dive-bombing display of excellence as they fed in the twilight. Amazingly, even though it was 4 in the morning UK time, Mum and Dad were full of beans and probably had more energy than we did!

We're looking forward to introducing them to our friends at church this morning and we may head into the city and across the Golden Gate Bridge this afternoon (depending on energy levels...!)

Thursday, October 8, 2009


I (Nicci) went for a 'routine check-up' at the dentist today. My first since moving here. Now, back home I pride myself on my 'immaculate dental hygiene' (my dentist's phrase!), but to my HORROR, today I was told that I had SIX cavities that needed filling...I am so ashamed.

AND, even worse - they could do half of them (the left side) straight away. So, I spent a miserable hour at the dentists - with him drilling and filling and polishing my marred teeth... and then spent the next 2 hours unable to speak without slurring, since the left side of my face and tongue was so numb... miserable.

I will now commence a religious flossing regime to try and regain my tooth-clean-pride...

I am secretly wondering whether the Americans put sugar in their water - is that possible? It could explain the sudden decline in my dental hygiene since moving here!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Ginger beer is my grandfather's favourite drink. I'd never really been that keen on it, until I had a 'Moscow Mule' cocktail (vodka and ginger beer with a wedge of lime) at a bar one time and decided I had to get some. So we looked around the super market and got some ginger ale. There was a faint ginger aroma, but it wasn't quite the ticket. Disappointed with that particular brand, I found some Schweppes ginger ale thinking (foolishly) that, because I recognised the name on the label and that they've never let me down when it comes to tonic for my Gs&T, it would be just what I was after. Sadly, no. I got some Safeways own brand ginger ale. Not good enough... We are now well stocked in ginger ale. By this time, I was begining to realise that I needed ginger beer and not ginger ale (how they get away with calling it ginger ale I don't know - false advertising or something... there's barely even a whiff of ginger in some of the brands we sampled). But you simply cannot buy ginger beer in America. Not to be outdone, I went online and found a British food store that had a ginger beer with the word 'fiery' on the label. That had to be more like the Moscow Mule of my dreams. I ordered 24 cans of the stuff and, while I was at it, 2 boxes of Alpen muesli and 12 Cadbury's Boost chocolate bars. They arrived. And it's gooood! Ginger beer, like curry, is just something we Brits do better than the Americans. However, I feel more comfortable in ordering cans of ginger beer to be delivered to me here in California than I would ordering a takeway curry from Xenuk in Finchampstead, Berkshire - I'm not sure it would survive the trip across the Atlantic.
Last Sunday, we decided to check out one of the hiking trails we'd been told about. So, in 30 degree heat, we donned our walking boots (sweaty!) and headed out towards half moon bay.

We parked along Skyline Blvd and started hiking in the direction of the coast... it was hot, but the thick Redwood forest provided welcome shade and the views of wooded hillsides sloping towards the Pacific were gorgeous... hiking has definitely been added to our 'potential things to do at the weekend' list!

Time for another blog post! Last weekend our friend, Claire turned 25 and decided to celebrate 'Jungle' style, by throwing a Jumanji fancy dress party...

Ed styled himself on Jumanji (Robin William's character in the film) and I went as a lion (complete with Lion's eyes painted on my eyelids for full, freaky effect!) SUCH fun!
Sadly, we forgot to bring our camera to the party, but couldnt bear to have made such an effort without capturing it, so these photos were taken in the bushes outside our home when we got back!