Well, July 2nd was the last time I posted before Tj had to unhook our computers for the move. For the next month or so (until August 13th, to be exact) all of the entries have been written from memory and backdated.

Here I am starting off another entry with grumbling, but oh well. Papa called Wednesday night to tell Tj that the car people had called him (he’s our backup number) and were wanting info. After he relayed the message he asked how Max was. No, we still don’t know what we’re having, but he’s mentioned before that he has a BB gun for Max! I guess he thinks we’re having a boy. (‘Course, that’s what he hoped for when he had all his girls!) Then he asked how Max’s mom was, and then he hung up. The whole call was no more than five minutes. Now I know I’m being extremely petty here, but that really annoyed me. Every time I call him he apologizes for not calling me. Mom always complains that she has to dial 39 numbers when she calls and says that’s the reason she never calls me. So here he is, already talking to Tj, and he can’t spare a few minutes to talk to his own daughter!? I’ve got to let this go, but it really goads me. I really want to try not to be this way with my kids. I don’t want to go off the deep end and smother them, either; but there’s got to be a happy medium.

Well, I was gonna write something good, but I’ve been gone awhile, and now it’s time to put my baby to bed! Tj’s taken care of the car and is home safe and sound. Will write more later, but don’t know when…the movers will be here Tuesday!!!! It’s getting so close!

Ugh…I hate to start this post out with bad news, but I just can’t wait to get out of here! I’d been putting off washing the dishes for a day or two (it’s amazing how few we generate when I hardly eat anything!). Finally got off my lazy butt this morning and was taking care of business. After about 3/4 of the way through I started smelling something…now this really isn’t unusual around here…I can’t wait till we get back to where my house NEVER smells like sewer…that’s just not attractive, ever. Anyway, I couldn’t figure out what that smell was. The phone rang and I was on it for two or three minutes. When I went back and was rinsing a bowl I noticed that the water was brown…hmmmmmm…. Side note: this was a ‘clean’ dish that I’d gotten back from Grace. I’d sent her home with some food about three weeks ago and got the dishes back yesterday with cat hair in them!!! Disgusting! So, since she had cleaned all but the cat hair out the water should’ve been clear. Needless to say I’d been smelling the dirt and crud coming out of my own faucet! I don’t know what they’re doing with construction around here, but I can’t wait to get out of here! The last two mornings the water has been cut off for a time…and now this. I’m sorry to report that I cried about it; just a little bit, though.

And now the good news: one week from today we’ll be in the air at this time!!! YEA!!!

Tj’s gone now to take the car up to Madrid. He mentioned last week at church that he’d be doing that and we found out that the preacher was gonna be driving his kids up there for camp the next day. Tj told him if they had somewhere to stay he’d bring them up there with him. The preacher was glad not to have to do that 12-hour round-trip drive, I’m sure; and Tj was glad to have some company on the way. He’s gonna try to get a hop on an Iberia flight back down today…Fran says that with his pilot’s license he shouldn’t have any trouble…it’s pretty much up to the discretion of the pilot on the flight down here. If he can’t swing that he’ll just get a train ticket to Balsicas and Fran will go pick him up around 9pm tonight. Fran and Teresa have been so good to us; Tj was gonna ask if we could borrow their second car to go to church Sunday night (they’re having a going-away party for us and another couple), when he mentioned it to Fran he said he (Fran) had already talked to Teresa and they’d decided to give us their car tonight for our use until we leave next Friday morning! Tj told him we didn’t need it except to go to church but Fran said he wouldn’t hear of it. What nice friends we’ve made here!

Well, not much is going on here…I’m ignoring all the work I need to start doing to get ready for the move…instead we had a barbecue Monday! Fran, Teresa and Jay came over (Carmen was in Madrid). Tj made his pasta salad and cole slaw, I made Mom’s potato salad. Everyone had their choice of hamburgers or hot dogs, and many were eaten, but not by me! It completely amazes me how little I eat now…I’ve always been a big eater, and thought that would only increase when I got pregnant…needless to say I’m wrong. All I ate that day was: breakfast: two pieces of cinnamon toast; lunch: cucumber and bell pepper strips with bleu cheese dip, half a hamburger, three bites of potato salad, cherry cobbler with ice cream; supper: half a hamburger and five chips. That’s it! And this napping thing is out of control…I got up at 7 with Tj and started cleaning up for the guests. They came over at 2pm, so there was no time for a nap. Fran and Teresa left around 5, and Jay stayed to talk a bit. Finally at 6 I left the party. I slept until 9pm, got up for 2 hours to eat supper and talk to Tj a bit, and then went back to bed and slept soundly!

After Jay got here and we were waiting on Fran and Teresa Tj got a call from the PEP office saying the colonel’s trip down here had been cancelled. Tj was glad he didn’t have to take his PT test the colonel was gonna give him…by all rights it’s up to his new base to administer it, and it was crummy that Tj got two weeks notice that he was gonna get tested. Anyway, in the end it all worked out.

Little by little the move is getting closer. We were told by the Gov’t that they wouldn’t ship any alcohol back to the States. This seemed like a gyp since they shipped some over here, and a month before we leave isn’t the time to find that out. Tj’s gotten several bottles as gifts from his students, and he wanted to bring some back as gifts. He called Rota and found out that we can make a customs shipment…so that’s what we did this morning. The guy from Rota had been to Zaragoza yesterday, so he stopped here on his way back. He showed up at 8:30 and was done in 40 minutes or so. Our first shipment! We’re almost outta here!

Ok, I know I’ve been a bit harsh on Gonzo…but here’s some indisputable proof that he is lacking…something…. A few weeks ago Tj was showing Gonzo how the mail system works here…it’s practically the US postal system. We address our mail just as if we were in the US, we don’t have to put US on the envelope. It goes into a sealed bag and then Iberia (a Spanish airline) takes it to the embassy in Madrid. From there it’s in US hands…and in fact the individual pieces of mail are never sorted by the Spanish. So obviously we use US postage. Anyway…Tj had a stack of mail on his desk and was trying to show Gonzo how to cancel the stamp and then bag it up when Gonzo spied the stamp. “What’s this? A Spanish stamp?” he said. Tj replied that it was US postage, and started to explain again that our mail doesn’t go through Spanish hands…but before he could finish Gonzo went on “I’ve never seen a Spanish stamp before, where do you buy these, is that Mary on there………….?” Tj starts again with the explanation. On and on Gonzo goes “How much do Spanish stamps cost? How many come on a sheet?” It’s amazing…it was a Christmas stamp, it said USA and 32 cents on it…why would a Spanish stamp have USA on it? Why doesn’t he shut up?