Kathmandu, Let's explore

We have had a fun January with some visitors this month. People, this January has been COLD. To be honest it was a bit depressing when I would look at the inside temp of the house and it would be 45. I would think, ahhh, it has got to be freezing!

I mean, look at this, 9.5 degrees C. Not even close to 0. I promise, it is still cold. We have become accustomed to using many hot water bottles (Thanks for sending them Adrienne!) and little hand warmers this winter. Alas, the weather is warming up here and we are all doing the happy dance! This January my cousin and my brother and sister-in-law were able to visit. It is ALWAYS fun to have visitors. While my cousin was here we took her on a tour of Kathmandu. Look at these three. 

I spent the week with these three goofballs and on the weekend we toured! First, we went to Bhaktapur Durbar Square. A bit of history first. Many years ago in the valley of Kathmandu there were 3 kingdoms: Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur. Each of the kingdoms have a durbar square where the kings would live and hold community meetings and festivals. All the the 3 squares had substantial damage during the earthquake, but varied degrees of each survived. I had never visited Bhaktapur, so we took my cousin there. Many of the temples and buildings there did not survive the earthquake, but it is still one of the best preserved squares in the valley. Many of the buildings are still being held up by timbers or bamboo poles. Bhaktapur is famous for their yogurt, which we loved and got some to take home! We hired a guide and it was totally worth it and we got many tidbits of information that we would not have known otherwise. Like that the king had one of his artisans hands cut off after he finished a masterpiece so he would never again create something that wonderful. Good times. 

We hired a driver for the day, so after we went here we headed to Swayambhunath temple. Also my kids call is the monkey temple, because, SO MANY MONKEYS! You have to be careful, those crazy things will steal things from your hands. This temple was also damaged in the earthquake but is one of the oldest in Kathmandu. It is a Buddhist temple so people will offer offerings here of rice or sweets (which of most is eaten by the monkeys). You can see much of the valley from this vantage point.

After our short visit here, we went to the square in Lalitpur called Patan Durbar Square. This is the closest to our house, so we know a bit more about what is around it. It was substantially damaged in the earthquake and there are still so many roads and homes that are being shored up with bamboo poles. We walked around the square and then had a snack at a friend's restaurant on the square. 

We had a fun time exploring the city that we now live in and thankful for guests who give  us the boost to do so. We had such a great time with my cousin here.

About a week after my cousin left, my sister in law and brother visited. They have visited the city before, so we spent much of our time chatting and enjoying the time together. 

It is so good to have some family visit. Also, the biggest news of the day is that the blockade between India and Nepal is over. The people of the plains have stopped blocking the border crossings, so we have petrol, diesel and cooking gas coming to the valley! I am again seeing shelves stocked with goods and the overflowing boxes on the floor. Never has it felt so good to walk into a grocery store and have to step over boxes. Yea for supplies! I am also fairly certain after looking at this picture that my children have too many dress up clothes, but hey, their mama likes to sew. Until next time.

Malaysia Part two

I have realized that I am faltering in my goal for bi-weekly updates. This is the reason: it is winter. I have found it difficult to be able to write when my fingers are too cold to move across the keyboard. There is no indoor heating or any kind of insulation in the houses and with the gas shortage going on it is difficult to warm up. Between the cold and lack of electricity I just want to jump in my bed at night and cuddle my hot water bladder. Today we just received a new load shedding schedule and power is off 13 hours a day. The reality is that we have 3 usable hours of power a day and I find myself very thankful for that. My kids recently asked if the Netherlands (where the University is located) had power 24 hours a day, they were so excited that it does. They are getting an education living here!  

I did want to share about the second half of our Malaysia trip. We were able to rent a car and leave KL for 5 days. We headed north to Penang which is an island off the coast of the country close to Thailand. We were fairly unprepared and did not know it was the country's school holiday so the island was packed! We did find an Air BnB place to rent last minute, but it was a bit sketchy. The beaches were picturesque and we enjoyed some of the people we met there, but overall it was really packed and busy.  We did enjoy the night market, the swimming pools and getting our toenails painted! Here are some pictures from Penang.

After we bought some essential supplies (i.e. real chocolate chips) at Tesco, we headed to the highlands. Some of you may know that I have a huge affection for tea. I love all kinds and this winter I have probably drank too much of it (but it keeps my hands warm, so whatev) Malaysia was a British  colony up until the middle of the 20th century. The British loved the highlands as it is a more favorable climate and they could grow tea. So my family obliged and visited the Cameron Highlands. It was a very comfortable climate and we really enjoyed seeing all the agriculture they grew. I loved seeing the tea plantations and all strawberries they can grow.  I really enjoyed the highlands and would have enjoyed staying there longer.

After the highlands we headed back to KL to catch our plane. The only problem was our plane was changed to the next day! We headed back to the city and found a very cool Air BnB place and enjoyed one more night in the city. 

We did really enjoy our time in Malaysia and it was just the retreat that we needed. The winter has been cold here, but we have had visitors this past month! More about that later.


As I am writing, I realized how long it has been since I have written a post. Part of the reason was our trip to Malaysia! A couple of months ago we knew we wanted to take a trip around Christmas time. Originally we thought we might take a trip here in Nepal, but with the border still closed and petrol scarce we knew that wouldn't be an option. One of the fastest and cheapest flights was to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and so we booked the tickets. In preparation to go I scoured the internet to see what kinds of places would be fun to visit and what we should do. I was pleasantly surprised to find some really fun things to do in the city. We also booked all of our hotels through Air BnB which was awesome as it is a bit hard to find hotel rooms that fit our family size. Most of the places we stayed were off the charts amazing! 

Every place we booked to stay had a pool in KL. We had a great view of the city. KL is a very developed city with many tall buildings, shopping malls and unique places to visit. KL used to have the tallest building in the world, the Petronas Twin Towers, before Dubai beat them. At the bottom of the towers is a huge shopping mall. There is a picture of me trying to do a selfie in front of the towers. The last picture is one of the KL tower and is another landmark in the city. We were able to spend 5 days here and these were some of the things we enjoyed the most!

1. The Swimming Pools! - I'll admit it is COLD here in Nepal and it has been a long time since the kids have been able to swim. Malaysia is located at 3 Degrees North of the Equator, so it is always hot. They had pools with views and pools made our of Plexiglas sides. It really had everything!

2. KLCC Aquarium - We really enjoyed this. They have many water creatures there that are unique to that part of the world. The kids like the moving walkway that took us through a tube like we were under the ocean. 

3. Hop on, Hop off Bus -  I know this one is pretty touristy, but it is a great way to learn about the city and get a pretty inexpensive ride around. The kids love being on the top of the double decker bus and driving around. The bus has a recording playing that tells about different aspects of the city and all the important things that make Kuala Lumpur what it is. 

So happy waiting for the bus.

4. KL Bird Park -  One of the stops on the hop on, hop off tour was the KL Bird Park. The kids wanted to go and it was great. It is a large park that is enclosed so many of the birds wander free in the grounds. We saw beautiful hornbills, there were peacocks you could get so close to touch and a fun bird show that the kids enjoyed.  Brooklynn may have taken 545,205,122 pictures of birds there.

5. Berjaya Times Square Amusement Park- Yes, inside one of the malls was an amusement park with roller coasters and crazy rides. We went and the kids had a blast. They were not tall enough to ride the biggest rides, but they really enjoyed the time they had. Jeff and I did go on the big roller coaster and thought it was pretty fun. 

We did leave the capital city, but I'll save all that fun for the next post! For mom, she was happy to have one of these... cheers!

Festivities for Thanksgiving

We hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving. Memories of fireplaces, trees turning colors, football, food, family and afternoon naps always remind me of Thanksgiving.  We had a wonderful day and enjoyed many of the American foods we enjoy on Thanksgiving. It was filled with friends and lots of food. I was afraid that we were going to have more tears from the kids, but they did great. We were ale to FaceTime our families and send our love and thanks from so many miles away. It truly is incredible! In case you were wondering, yes, we did have a real turkey!

The kids were so excited to make their thankful tree and we were able to have some of our Nepali friends add some leaves to the tree. We truly have so many things to be thankful for! 

We were able to play some Thanksgiving bingo and enjoy so many desserts. Wow, so many desserts that we AWESOME! We are thankful for the ability to live here even through all the crazy things that are going on here. All of you enjoy filling up your gas tank for me!

A Season of Holidays

It has been getting cold here in Kathmandu. The air has been clear and the mountains have been beautiful. We have been trying to walk around our area and take in some of the beauty. Petrol, gas and diesel are still in short supply, but we  have been able to get around here. My kids are getting used to walking! Here is a picture from our area, the kids taking a break of course. Every inch of available arable land has some kind of crop on it. We have been watching the rice being harvested and laid out to dry.  

The past month has also been full of holidays for the Nepali people. The holiday of Dhashai is a week long festival in the middle of October. Then in the 2nd week of November they have the celebration of Thiar which is about 5 days long. These holidays are Hindu holidays that reflect the worship of certain deities. For Tihar many people make mandalas on the ground in front of their house. They are made using colored powders. They then draw a line into their house. The homes are usually also adorned with candles, electric lights and dried flowers hung into garlands. The belief is that the goddess Laxmi sees the lights on the house she will come and bless it with wealth. We thought it looked a lot like Christmas around here with all the lights.

We have taken the opportunity of all the holidays to visit our didi's house. We really enjoyed going to her place and seeing another place in Nepal. We were stopped by a procession of people having some sort of parade and in typical Nepali fashion we enjoyed the chaos. 

The blessing of late has been that we have had power for almost 24 hours a day. Since we are almost out of cooking gas I have not been using the oven. Jeff surprised me one day and came home with an electric oven! So, I have been baking and cooking. The joy of some pumpkin chocolate chip cookies!

Happy Fall!

Family Trips

Last week we took our first fun trip here in Nepal. Nepal's biggest holiday is called Dhasain, which happened to be last week. It is similar to Christmas in that many things shut down, families all travel and lots of big meals happen. Kathmandu becomes quiet so we decided to take a trekking trip in the Annapurna Conservation Area. Pokhara is the main city nearby and is an amazing, beautiful city about 190 kilometers from Kathmandu. When it is clear you can see Macchupuchre (Mount Fishtail) prominently from the city. We were able to visit underground caves, see waterfalls and take a boat ride on the lake. Pokhara is a wonderful city! The girls loved Pokhara and said it was so quiet they wanted to move there (clearly the street dog barking has got to them!). 

After some fun days in Pokhara we started on our trek! We started in Naya Pol along the Modi River. We were all feeling good and happy to be on our way. The first day of the trek was quite easy. We followed the Modi Kola (nice and flat!) and slept one night at a hotel in Syuali Bazaar. I was totally amazed by the fact that all these little hotels had hot water, a good, warm bed and great food. It was right by the river and we could hear the loud rushing waters all through the night. We woke up the next morning and headed UP! This was one of our hardest days. The girls did great and Josiah walked by himself most of the way! See the picture below of him being carried by the porter! The amazing thing about these mountain towns is that there are stone staircases crisscrossing the hillsides. As you ascend you can see the terraced hills and stone steps for as long as the eye can see. We arrived in Guandruk and enjoyed a day at the top of the mountain. When it is clear you feel as if you can reach out and touch Annapurna South and some of the other large mountains. They are absolutely breathtaking! We followed the same route down and enjoyed seeing this part of Nepal.

It was so good to get away from the city for a bit. Currently, the country is reeling from a shortage of all petrol products and it has made it difficult to get around, eat and have regular daily life. You can read about it here. We are doing well, but it is hard to see  so many of the day to day wage earners shut down their shops or not be able to work because of the lack of fuel. Everyone hopes this will be resolved soon so that a country that has been struggling so much this year already can get back on its feet. 

A Day in the Life

To be honest, I didn't know what to write this post. I thought I should share about our day to day life but started thinking it was so boring. Some parts of our day are, well, just so daily. Eating, school, running errands, doing work, taking walks, the usual. Then there are things that are so unusual to an American life that I often laugh as I am living them. So, I thought I would attempt to give you a glimpse into a typical day in our life. 

Much of our life has settled into routine, at least as much of a routine as we can have here in Nepal. Homeschooling has allowed some structure in our home. Our didi arrives everyday about 9:30, as long as the bus is on time, and usually comes the the homeschool room to check on us. Every morning Brooklynn looks with a big grin on her face and says, "Chia?" She loves the type of chai that our didi makes. Our didi  is very sweet and always brings us the chai in Brooklynn's favorite cup. This is the daily of our life. School is the typical mixture of science, history, art and then some individual book work in language arts and math. I am using a curriculum that is planned for me and I can add as much as I want to it. It has been great to work with. Here are some pictures of the projects we have done :)

The rest of the day is a mixture of kids playing outside, getting something ready for dinner, or trying to remember to turn on the water. It seems like I have this nagging list of things that I need to get done, which I rarely do. Most of the time my unusual starts here, when I am out and about. Like the not so normal day I saw a monkey cross the street and steal a bag of bread from the store or trying to minimize our cooking gas usage while the border between India and Nepal has closed any fuel from entering the country. Before the gas shortage crossing the street was an event unto itself, and with children, I was always praying. Please let those cars/bikes/motorcycles/dogs/cows see us and not hit us. Whew, somehow the chaos has some unspoken rules that seem to keep us safe.

We also had the not so normal day of going on a picnic lunch with a home school co-op here. We were able to walk and eat lunch at this amazing spot We could see the tall, snow capped Himals in the background and green, lush terraced rice fields below us. Is this even real? We saw amazing birds and enjoyed a beautiful day. 

So, our days are normal, and they are not. Right now Nepal has very little petrol, diesel, cooking gas (LPG) or aviation fuel in the country. We are really praying there will be an end to the shortage and that India will open up their borders. We are fine, but those who live day to day are really going to be affected if the gas shortage goes on any longer. We have seen MASSIVE lines of cars for petrol and the streets are nearing empty. 

So in the midst of our daily days and the quite unusual ones, no one can say that living in Nepal is uneventful! Everyday there is something new to keep you on your toes!

Nepali Life

I knew that my life here in Nepal would be different than in the U.S. These past few weeks have been a whirlwind of learning for me. The biggest thing that has happened here in Nepal is they passed their first Democratic constitution. The king of Nepal was disposed in 2008 as Maoist rebels had been slowly closing in on the capital. For years there was fighting and unrest. After the king left, the Maoists became a political party and an interim Constituent Assembly was formed to write what would become the constitution of the country. Seven years and many squabbles later a constitution has been passed. It was a day of celebrating in our colony as many have wanted a law so the country could move forward. The street to our colony was lined with lights and some women cooked Gulaab Jaamun for the community.  

In the midst of the constitution being passed there has still be people unhappy with it. People in certain ethnic groups feel underrepresented and feel they may be treated poorly. There is a long history of unfair treatment at the heart of this issue.  This is at least my understanding as an outsider trying to figure out the going-ons of its host country.

As with many countries, the regions of Nepal are divided and have a strong history of animosity towards different ethnic people. People, this a mountainous country and it is just a lot of hard work to get from one place to another. There are 110 distinct language spoken in Nepal! They have tried to fairly create some district boundaries in the midst of this.

As an American our constitution has been around for many years and it is held up as the law of the land. Living here has made me wonder, how did the people of the new America feel about their constitution? Did they feel it was fair? How did they deal with dissent? What was considered the majority? What were the major issues of their day? I'm sure some of these questions could be answered, but some may be harder to find.  These are the stories less told, but may hold some wisdom for today. 

In the midst of all this the border to India has had unrest. The Nepali side is trying to talk to the dissenting parties about how to come to a reasonable conclusion. From all the news I am reading there is an unofficial embargo of fuel and other products from India. In the past 5 days only about 50 petrol tankers have been allowed into the country. You can google the news, but the reality is it affects us. We are going on our 6th day of fuel rationing. Private vehicles are no longer allowed to get petrol and our area is out of cooking gas. Any airplane that comes to the valley has to have enough fuel to return to their country as there is no aviation fuel left.  

I have been able to have good conversations with my kids about trade embargos, why you diversify your trade partners and  why seaports are so important. Real life learning, heh?  As the city slowly comes to a standstill waiting for petrol to come, we have tried to walk around our area and find places to enjoy. For a country who lives day to day this only further increases their burden. Here are some pictures from our area and a bit of the life here. 

Bless this guys heart. I blew out my sewing machine, dang 220, so he graciously finished my coasters. 

Until next time!

Our Anniversary

Jeff and I just recently celebrated our 12th year of marriage. We were just babes when we were married (AKA we aren't really that old). We were married in Southern California September 13th, 2003. We were engaged and married within a summer with one year left at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. We were married, went on a week long honeymoon and then headed to San Luis Obispo just in time for school to start and to finish our last year in school. It was an amazing year and we had a blast. 

We knew this year we were going to be in Nepal for our anniversary. We really try to protect our time together and celebrate the milestones we have as a married couple. Some of our friends here in Kathmandu graciously took our kids for 6 (!) hours. So, we did what any mature couple would do. We went to Thamel (the tourist district here in Nepal) and got a tattoo and nose piercing. I also had a massage that my husband blessed me with, a gift for every mama. 

The nose piercing was something I knew I wanted to do. I may have a history of getting lightheaded with things like this. I am really a baby when it comes to needles. I could never get a tattoo. I would end up with just the letter "I" on my back because I wouldn't be able to finish the sentence. It would not work out well. So, with Jeff's support I got my nose ring. Jeff decided that he should get his wedding ring tattooed on. So he had "prim" in Devanagari script tattooed on his ring finger. He really loves me. 

We partied like we were 33 and had an early dinner. We found a great Italian place and enjoyed talking kid free. Can you believe we did not take pictures there?!?! It is so valuable to be able to look back on the years of marriage and look at where we have been and where we want to go. If you haven't ever done that, I recommend it! Remembering why you fell in love with your spouse is priceless. We feel so blessed to be able to share life together and still have fun. 

We also took our kids to the Kathmandu Zoo. It has some nice gardens and many animals. I many times forget that this is actually a native jungle area. The lowlands of Nepal (called the Terai) were especially full of elephants, Bengal Tigers, snakes, deer and many other awesome animals. We got very close to the elephants and the kids really enjoyed doing some sightseeing here in our town. 

We are hoping in the coming months we will be able to find some fun places and enjoy Kathmandu. Until later!

Figuring it Out

It has been a month of settling in fun here in Kathmandu. Just for your sake (ok, mine) I thought I would list all the things we accomplished:

  • Bank account
  • Didi hired
  • Paid people with cash
  • Figured out how to ride the buses
  • Conversely, figured out how to barter with taxi drivers 
  • Started homeschooling
  • I baked cookies!
  • Turned in Visa application
  • Motorcycle license for Jeff (I think he stood in 4 long lines to get this done)
  • Found good food places
  • Got my nose pierced!


Whew, and that list took so much of our time. There is a reason things move slower in Nepal, life just takes longer. There are so many tiny shops, markets, tiny alleys and places to be explored and if you found an awesome shop with that one thing you wanted, call it a win! Through my browsing I thought I would share some of my tips/favorites.

1. Milkmandu

The milk here is usually sold in a box and always has a label that says UHT. I just found out that means Ultra Heat Treated. So they cook it til nothing is living and there is little taste. Where we live there is a great little grocery mart called KK Mart and they just started carrying Milkmandu milk and yogurt. It is great! Real yummy milk that I can walk to get, awesome!

2. Kathmandu Coffee

We have been told my many people that this was a rockin' coffee shop. One day in my wandering I found it and we have thoroughly enjoyed it. I love the coffee and my children love their Oreo shake (which they may have spilled promptly after this photo was taken) it's a win.

3. The Zoo

We just acquired passes to the Zoo. It has some very pretty gardens inside and a play area for the kids. I forget that this is actually ecologically a jungle area. The animals here are mostly native and pretty awesome. Like a Bengal tiger, Asian elephant, rhinoceros, hippopotamus, foxes, monkeys and more. It was a fun place to go and I'm sure we will come play here more!  

4. Lumbini Tandori

If you like Dal Tadhka or naan this is the place to eat. There are local prices and killer food. I think I could eat their naan all day. Butter naan, garlic naan, plain naan. It's all so good.


I have also learned some important tips living here. When you are looking for coconut oil to cook popcorn with, look in the hair aisle. All the edible coconut oil is used in hair as they "oil it up" here. If you are in a dire situation and absolutely HAVE to shave your legs, hair conditioner works great, really. I can find toilet paper just about anywhere (yea!) and Kathmandu has a large assortment of Mexican food stuffs. I can get fajita mix, tortillas, tortilla chips and pinto beans. It's pretty great if you ask me! 

I'm sure I'll be wandering more streets and finding more awesome spots. I hope to keep you posted!

A Thank You Letter

I am currently reading Jen Hatmaker's book For the Love. For those of you who don't know who she is, she is a kick. She can't help being funny. In the midst of her serious conversations she has a chapter or two of thank you notes, all quite satirical of course. She admits to taking the idea from Jimmy Fallon because imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. In the wake of reading her book, last week as I was riding the bus I was simultaneously writing a thank you note to the bus system in Nepal in my head. I thought you all might appreciate a little view into the letter...

Dear Nepali bus system,

When I arrived in Nepal I wondered how I was going to be able to work out. It is a bit odd for a Western woman to be out running and the risk is high for me to be hit by a car, bus, motorcycle or truck all why trying to fill my lungs with oxygen at 5,000 ft. Then I discovered the Nepali buses and it all became so clear. It may seem a bit counter intuitive at first, but bus system, you have allowed me to tone muscles that I never knew I had. Since I am quite taller than the average Nepali I am able to use some yoga positions as I enter the bus to cock my head to the side and be able to stand up. I then grab the bar above me and hold on. My arm muscles flex from holding on to the bar as we are packed in like sardines and move as a school of fish inside the bus. With each turn, twist and bump I am able to flex my abs to remain standing upright and gain my balance by anchoring my feet. It is no small feat to have the weight of many others leaning up against you as the bus comes to a stop and you have to push back not to fall out. Buses, you have also appealed to my American sense of efficiency. Not only am I able to work out, but I also can get to where I need to go all in one shot. Thank you. I will be counting the time I spend on the bus as part of my workout routine, unless I get a seat. 

Until next time,


And just for your pleasure, I got to try on a partial sari. Whooo!

Setting up House

Today the internet came to our house. I feel like I should jump up and down and spin around. In a country where the wires look like this...

It really is amazing that somehow they know where all those lines are going and can make them work.

Settling in here takes longer than in other places. Some days I just want a Target where I can purchase staples and milk in the same store at the same time. Learning where things are located and at what store has what is no small feat. We have been trying to set up things for our house we have unpacked all our boxes and it felt so good. We have been living in transition for quite a time now and getting rid of the cardboard helped. When there are a laundry list of things to do we have to talk priorities. Here are mine:

1. Open Bank Account (which is not as easy as it sounds)

2. Find Didi

And that was my list. I didn't care about what order the other things happened. Some of you may be wondering, what is a didi? In Nepali didi means older sister. She is a house helper that makes our world go round. She cooks, cleans, does our laundry and helps me shop. I love her already! Thankfully, we have accomplished both on my list! Homeschooling has started and Didi is my best bud. Can I get an AMEN!

Now, it is a bit more complicated to do things here. Let me give you one example of why didi is my hero. Let's say I want to wash clothes. We have a washing machine and soap but need to hang dry the clothes. First, I need to see if the electricity is on, let's say its not. Then I need to look at my schedule and see what time it is coming on. When the electricity comes on I need to start the wash quickly. Oops, we are out of water. Luckily the electricity is on so I can pump water to the tank on top of our house. I need to remember later in the day to turn on the pump from the city water to pump water into our large tank under our carport which can later be used to pump up top of the house. The city water only comes on from 4-5 pm so I need to be home to turn on the pump and hopefully the electricity is on. I finish the wash before the electricity goes off. I then can hang it on the lines, but they need to stay there over night so they can dry, then we can fold them and put them away. Yea! Clean clothes. Now, like anything else, all these things become routine and habit and then the normal, but we are still getting there and didi is a pro at working all these things together. 

We are so, so thankful for our house. It suits us perfectly and has western toilets, bathtubs and an OVEN!!! Here are some pictures for those of you asking!

Until next time! 

We Arrived!

It has been one week and I have finally been able to sit down and update the blog. It has been a whirlwind of traveling. It is truly mind boggling to think of the distance we have traveled and in such a short time. 

Our lives had been a combination of packing, sorting, getting rid of and saving for the past month. There were many days I just wanted to be on the other side of it. It becomes tiring to live out of boxes and trying to figure out where everything goes. Through our transition we felt  so blessed by our friends! The last week we had babysitting every day, food cooked for us, people helped take our stuff, moved some big pieces of furniture and let us stay in their house. We were able to have some sweet moments with friends and family the week before we left that filled our hearts.  To get to the airport we rented a tiny Uhaul to take our 14 boxes from our house to SFO. Want to see a picture? Ok!

And we did literally pack boxes. We found that the heavy duty boxes fared the best through the flights. 

We flew into Guangzhou, China and we arrived in the evening and we were taken to a hotel provided by the airline (which was amazing!). We were able to have a buffet breakfast in the morning then we were off to tour the city. Guangzhou is a bit inland from Hong Kong. It was HOT and humid.  The kids did great and were kinda like rockstars around the city. So many wanted to say hi and they loved talking to them. We saw some sites: the statue of the 5 rams, the museum of a Nanyue king and Yuexiu Park. It was a quick and busy day. 

We headed to the airport in the afternoon and we were ready to get to Kathmandu! We were tired and a place to land was taunting us. The kids were so exhausted they slept the whole flight! When we arrived in Kathmandu all our luggage came (what!) and we were able to make it to our house around midnight. We found our sheets and settled in for the night. It felt so good to get here. 

And for any of you who know me, this is what I was waiting for. A cup of tea the next morning in one of my favorite mugs with a cool breeze and monsoon clouds in the sky. It felt good, and even a little bit like home. 

First Steps

My kids like to say we are taking a long vacation. I like to think we have begun an adventure. We have packed, planned and prepared for the time ahead. In less than 4 days we will be boarding a plane with a one way ticket to Kathmandu, Nepal. After about a year of planning Jeff is all prepared to be starting a PhD program at TU Delft in the Netherlands. The research portion will be in Nepal for about 3 years and we will end the PhD program in the Netherlands. We have decided to take this opportunity and run with it and hope it will be a great time for us to bond as a family, explore new places and give our kids an understanding of the world that they live in. 

I'm sure you have questions at this point: Do you have a place to live? Yes, its awesome! What are you doing for schooling? Homeschooling, thank you flexibility. Have you been there before? Yes, many times. What language do they speak? Nepali. I hope that you can follow us along and get more of your questions answered as we share our stories, memories and lessons of our life abroad with three kiddos.  

This will be a place where we can chronicle our journey and you can come along with us if you like! You may be in for some surprises (like a kid post ie: homework), video clips or clumsy cultural mistakes. Thanks for reading along!