Friday, July 25, 2014

Since Coming Back

Since coming back to the United States, we have been pretty busy. It took a grueling 24 hours of travel from Costa Rica, to Houston, to Washington DC, to Hartford, to Vermont - lost luggage, culture shock, freezing our behinds off while in the New England "spring" - until we finally were able to settle back into our old place for capstone week before graduation. 

Capstone week was long. It was only a week, but it seemed like a lot. And I had to plan my presentation since I didn't do anything during our backpacking trip. So I was pretty busy during my time in Vermont. Caitlin got to catch up with her coworkers, visit her favorite bead shop, and attend a few other capstones while I was busy. 
Caitlin with her old coworkers.
We had a fun time being back in Brattleboro, exploring our old stomping grounds. It was seriously a great transition into the US. 
We spent a lot of time with our friends Catherine and Steph. And we overindulged in our favorite New England treat at the Town Line Creamy in Bernardston. Seriously, I think we went 3 times... maybe 4.

And of course, we spent a lot of time with other friends enjoying Vermonty foods. The Marina (a local seafood place) and Vermont cheese, just to name a few. 

While we were in New England we had to visit our favorite missionary, so we ventured down to Holyoke, MA (the birthplace of volleyball) to visit Elder Southerland. He was seriously the best missionary. Well worth the drive to catch up with an old friend. 
After our week in Vermont it was time to travel to San Diego, but first we spent the day in Boston. We didn't rent a car while we were in Vermont, our friend Catherine drove us around everywhere (which was the best thing ever) so we didn't have a ride to Boston to catch our flight. But then we met a girl from San Diego who was also capstoning and they were flying out of Boston the same day as us. Perfect - they could give us a ride. Unfortunately, their flight left at 5:00 in the morning, and ours left at 5:00 in the evening. Fortunately, we love Boston and could definitely spend the day there exploring all our favorite places. 
We found this beautiful Nutella truck that was handing out free samples. What an amazing free sample. I wish they were giving out free tubs instead. :)
And we went around to the many parks and historical landmarks that make Boston so great. It was a beautiful day, so we enjoyed the weather as much as we could. 

We went to Bunker Hill to climb up to the top of the monument. It was a little warm as we climbed the hundreds of stairs to the top - but we had to do it. When in Rome, right?

After we finished climbing, we decided it was about time for a picnic and a nap. We were so excited for grass when we got back to the states, and I could not wait to take a nap in the luscious green grass outside of the monument.  Caitlin thought it was pretty funny. I thought it was glorious.
After spending a while exploring Boston, we went back to the airport for some more airport drama (no lost luggage this time, just a delayed flight, rebooking, and extra baggage fees), but we managed to find these incredible rocking chairs down one of the passageways. I don't know why there were there, but we sat down and enjoyed our subway sandwiches in them.  
The day after we got to San Diego, Caitlin's sister returned home from her mission in Nashville, Tennessee. It was so great to see her come home. I have never been a part of a missionary homecoming, so it was a lot of fun to be there during the process. Caitlin is so happy to have her sister home. There were many times while she was gone that Caitlin wanted to call her or spend time with her, so it is nice now that she is back. 
There was a huge gang waiting for her at the airport. Both sets of grandparents, all her siblings and brother-in-laws, and 4 nieces and nephews. What a spectacular homecoming. 
Our first week in California we also got to see my cousins who came down for a conference. It was quite the coincidence that they were there at the same time we were. We took them on a little tour of San Diego, including the Mormon Battalion Center, and the LDS temple. It was fun to see them and finally introduce Caitlin to my cousins.
Caitlin also reopened her Etsy shop to sell earrings. It was a lot of fun to work on before we left for Mexico, so we're hoping we can gain the same momentum now that we are back. Something fun we can do together (although I hardly do anything). If you're needing a new pair of earrings, or know someone who may enjoy some handmade earrings, check out here shop here.
Since then we have been really busy as well with applying to jobs, interviewing for jobs, and trying to figure out what our future holds. It is really hard planning out your future. Seriously. But we are grateful to be in San Diego for the summer, and really grateful for Caitlin's parents. They have opened their home to us and allowed us all the time we need to figure things out. Now that we are readjusted to living in the states (it was rough the first few weeks) I think we are starting to feel comfortable with the idea of staying stateside for a little while. But who knows... we're not trying to plan too far in advance. 

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