Turkey day + 3 years celebrated

Hello, dear readers. I am finally posting after a few weeks of silence. I have been sick for a week now, so I couldn’t seem to muster the energy to post. I’m on the mend, but this bug was a bit of a doozy. I’m still battling a gnarly cough and lots of pressure in my ears. And now, poor Nathan is in its grip. We’ve been told that it’s quite typical for the newbies, fresh from the states, to get a whopper of a bug their first winter. So I guess our numbers got pulled. I will say that I’m ready to feel a bit more like myself. Being lodged up in our little flat for the majority of a week is enough to make a person feel like they’re losing touch. So I’m looking forward to fully recovering and getting out of town this weekend. We’ll be taking the train down to Edinburgh to see friends from the states. This will be our first trip out of Aberdeen and the surrounding shire. We’ve heard the trip is beautiful and we’re excited to experience more of what Scotland has to offer. Plus, it will be quality time with dear friends. Sarah and Landon celebrated their 2 year wedding anniversary on November 18th, and we celebrated our 3rd anniversary on November 19th. So this weekend together in Edinburgh will be a “Happy Anniversary” &  “Happy Thanksgiving” to the 4 of us 🙂 Quite looking forward to it.

So rewinding a tad…we hosted a potluck Thanksgiving dinner here over a week ago. It was a lovely time of food, conversation, and fellowship with new friends. I prepared a turkey breast crown in the slow cooker due to the minuscule size of our oven. Though I think it turned out a tad dry, it was still quite flavorful. I had nervously wondered if this, so-called, “large” turkey breast was going to feed 7 of us, even though it claimed it would feed 8-10. When the grocery delivery man brought it to our flat, I looked at it and panicked. “That’s it?! Oh no.” I’m used to a ginormous, American bird! I expected it to be smaller because since it is both wingless and legless, but I worried. However, I underestimated that little British turkey. It provided plenty of meat, and enough left over for some good turkey lunches.


If you’re thinking “turkey in a slow cooker? What?” I will assure you, it was actually quite yummy. I searched for an easy but well liked recipe for slow cooker turkey breast (recipe HERE), and then perused the reviews to get some added tips on how others prepared theirs. I placed mine atop a bed of chopped celery, some chopped garlic, and yellow onion slices for added flavor. Next time, I will heed the advice to turn the turkey breast upside down in the slow cooker, to keep the meat extra moist. The only hangup? Finding Lipton Onion Soup Mix for seasoning is nearly impossible here. I was supposed to receive it with my order the week of our Thanksgiving, but lo and behold, it was “not available” the day of my delivery. Not only is it hard to come by, it’s darn expensive here! So thanks to Pinterest, I looked up a “make your own Lipton onion soup mix” (recipe HERE) and marched on to another nearby store the day before our feast in SHEETS OF RAIN and howling winds to secure the spices I would need. Though I was soaked through, from head to toe, I did get my supplies. But sadly, my body’s surrender to the doozy of a bug is likely thanks to my spice excursion out into the elements. Regardless, our Thanksgiving feast was delicious. Lots of wonderful dishes prepared by the hands of new friends. I continue to be thankful for the generous and fun-loving community we’ve experienced in such a short time here. Truly a blessing!

Then, on the 19th, Nathan and I celebrated our 3 years of marriage and our entrance into year #4. I was not feeling good, but we made it to our reservation for afternoon tea in the city at a cool little hotel. We sipped on tea and coffee, munched on finger sandwiches, assorted tea cakes and tray bakes, and delectable scones with clotted cream and jam. And I was happily wearing my anniversary present. A pair of cherry red Dr. Marten boots. I haven’t worn docs since I was in the 8th grade!!! But they are “in” here and I’ve been itching for a pair of my own. Mostly because my pair as a teen were black and boring. So I figured now is the time to sport something bold. Plus, they’re like a time machine back to the late 90’s! I feel like listening to “Linger” by the Cranberries while I wear them.


So needless to say, we have been enjoying new traditions here in recent weeks. Christmas is just around the corner. We have put up our decorations, which are few in number but special.


I am particularly happy to have these hand knitted Christmas stockings with us, made by my grandmother in Tulsa. I’ve had mine since I was a little girl. Nathan received his as he entered the family. 🙂

These things keep us close to those we love back home and help us to celebrate the season here in special ways. Until next time. XoxoFullSizeRender












Frosty air + fireworks

It’s a windy morning here in Aberdeen, with a slight bite in the air and melancholy skies. While sipping my morning coffee, I’ve been watching the last of the yellow leaves get blown off the tree that sits just outside the back door. It feels like November to me, even though I’ve never experienced it here. But the air gets that smell about it, especially in the evenings… wood burning fireplaces mixed into a frosty cold. Nathan says it smells like Christmas time. To me, it reminds me of winter trips to the mountains with my family in Colorado. When we would step outside at night, the cold would rush into our nostrils and chill our lungs. I would breathe deeply and take in as much of that wintry essence as I could in one inhale.

I smelled it here last night. It was one of those beautifully clear nights and the moon was bright like a bulb in the sky. We ate dinner at home, bundled up from head to toe, and made our way to the Aberdeen beach for the Bonfire Night, AKA Guy Fawkes Night, AKA Firework Night. There’s a lot of history to November 5th that I won’t expound upon here, but should you be interested, check out this LINK at your leisure. Needles to say, you are to “Remember, remember the 5th of November!” So in place of a giant public bonfire, the city puts on a glorious firework display, all set to music.

Nathan and I moved along the streets and down into the masses of people. I felt like I was transported back into my childhood, into a swirl of 4th of July and trips to the circus. There were street vendors selling those plastic light up swords, wands, and spinning wheels. Children were twirling them about, enraptured with the bright colors. Others were writing words in the air with sparklers, imitating the fire throwers performing for the crowds.

We landed a spot on a grassy hill just above the sea of people gathering for the show. The perfect viewing area. As we waited, I observed. People walking to and fro. Children in puffy snowsuits with hats and mittens. Parents sipping hot cups of cocoa. Lots of conversations going on about us. Chitter chatter. And the smell of sparkler smoke thick in the air. Mmmm. The show began and for 20 minutes, we sat just below giant booms of colors, all synchronized to music. I noticed that the moon became the center of multiple bursts of color, like the golden inside of a bright flower. The little girl next to me kept saying “Wow! That is amazing!” I, too, kept saying the same to Nathan.  

As the show concluded, we zipped up the road to our church. Winding our way through the rush of people. We slipped into the warmth of the church coffee bar, and grabbed cups of cocoa with giant marshmallows, and snacked on miniature mince pies and other goodies. We talked, met lovely people, and thawed from the cold.

As we returned home for the night, that chill was in the air, with deep woodsy accents and the lingering scent of firework smoke. “That was really fun,” we shared. Both thankful to be in a place where we can embrace some new traditions, holidays, and adventures.

Next up on the list of celebrations…our 3rd wedding anniversary! November 19th. I’m already feeling especially sentimental.

Until next time. XOXO.