Monday, August 24, 2009

heaps of wildlife

Today was wildlife day. We drove to this island and saw the biggest pelicans ever really bigger than most of you reading this. then off to a farm where there were cows (hairy ones), new born goats and lambs (3 days old), horses, sheep (ready to be sheered), big goats and varriety of birds. Then off to Koala park. Lots of pictures for Leilani (its against the law to touch them, so no pics of me holding them) but one with a baby too cute and others hanging on for dear life at the tops of these trees with monster winds swinging them every which way there were also wallabies there too. Then off to penguin parade. Its a beach where these penguins nest and at night they come on shore, too cute. they are the fairy penguins so they are tiny and they come in little groups talking to each other its like watching people interact. Anyways photos forbiden so you'll have to take my word for it the cutest thing ever. ONly down fall so cold, litterally i was wearing 3 shirts,1 scarf, 3 jackets (all with hoods that I wore at the same time) and still was numb and looking fabulous(you could only see my eyes, hehe)!! Tomorrow not sure but they are going to make me a traditional polish dinner cabbage roll of some sort. Never had cooked cabbage so we will see. then wed i leave for the gold coast. I only have a place to stay the first night Im there so pray I find something for the other 3 nights.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Im in Melborne now which is in the south part of Australia. I am staying with a family who are fabulous. Thier daughter Olivia came to the states last January and well ended up at my house. Small world Im at her's and could not be happier. Her parents are from Polland and well perhaps that will be my next trip. They are so nice. I am however glad I am only here for a few days as the amount of yummy food I have eaten just today I will be 500 pounds in no time. The dad Max is a chef- cakes!! but made a fabulous dinner (not to mention breakfast of odd meats which Chris or any of my carnivorous friends would have loved) chicken and cheese potatoes and amazing vegitables- it is so nice to eat home cooking after 2 weeks of eating out! and also had amazing wine. I know I don't drink but really it was so good! then came dessert Stasi made this amazing almond cake tonight this fabulous coffee cake this morning (slight variation from the one my mom makes if any of you have had hers really good) so I asked for the recipes. SO when I get home I am going to try to convert the measurements of a "little of this" and "well like half of this cup of that" and 200g of butter into a cake that tastes hopefully like the one she made. I want to ask about the chicken too, really the best chicken ever and I have eaten a ton of chicken in my life. Anyways This meal was after a day that we picked up Olivia's god daughter Charlie who is 3 and went on an old steam train through the country side and rainforest then we stopped at a park and watched wild kangaroos eat just before sunset. Oh 3 year olds. So much fun no matter where they live. Cute and amazingly she loved me straight away. Fun day nice to be in a family environment. Tomorrow off to Philip Island hope it doesn't rain. It was cold today and I sent my big coat home with Libby so I hope not to freeze, and I hope my pants are dry, Stazi insisted she wash some of my clothes so I now have a few clean pairs only they don't dry things so hope is was windy enough today to dry them. Great people God has provided amazingly for my needs.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Trip Update

Ok this will be brief as I am being charged by the minute to type so here is my trip so far
Mon-Flight long, but muscle relaxer and a row to myself I amazingly slept most of it no food so starving when I got off!!
Wed- found food (as Mon-wed all one day really) then we took a boat to Davenport hiked around north head and Mt. Victoria beautiful, WW2 history stuff ate John Dorry fish
Thurs. -Boat to different island for worlds best beach- rained tons!!! wine tasting- will have great story later! interesting locals at dinner
Fri-RAIN, RAIN, RAIN, so we went to the west coast and hiked in the rainforest to the top of the falls some more beaches Pihu a surfing legend beach but really wet pictures are hillarious
SAt museum, best chocolate shop ever, ate lamb, saw Dralion!
Sun-boat to dormant volcano, hiked in the RAIN surprise we were wet but views were amazing
Mon- flew to Sydney, walked around botanical gardens, darling harbor (best lunch here at a brewry) worst dinner ever!
Tues- road subway system(funny stories to come)hiked the Blue Mountians, no rain!! beautiful waterfalls and rainforest
Wed-Boat to Manly beach-beautiful and sunny!! then tea at the opera house so much fun!!! girls I wish you were here!! then fancy dinner at this premire res. but I didn't like the food-shocker!
Thurs-zoo-lots o baby animals supper cute, then the bridge climb. Yes all the way to the top! amazing views but cant take camera due to safety will try to get more photos today!
Fri-trying to do laundry but not so successful yet so maybe blow drying my handwashed undies tonight!! not sure what today holds thinking city pictures and maybe a trip to manly beach agian it the most beautiful day today!

I am having fun, pray for safety as from today on I am on my own! I will have tons of stories and pics for you when I see you in 12 days! I am off to Melborne tomorrow pray I can contact the girl I am staying with before I leave!

Monday, August 10, 2009

On my way

i am all packed and will board the plane in a couple of hours. my intention is to keep you all posted as the days go. i make no promises. Thank you all for praying for me i have some amazing friends and while I knew this before the trip your phone calls and texts today are proof. i will miss you all! See you in a couple of weeks!!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

old letters

Today I opened up my Bible that I used in college. I couldn't find my other Bible, but in opening it I found lots of old papers, sermons, and letters from my parents and friends that for whatever reason I kept. I found a letter from Mike dated 1/16/99. Understand that on that date Mike and I were not dating and were just getting back to being friends and still he wrote words of encouragement all based on scripture. During this time I was facing some challenging situations at school and was so confussed as to what God was doing. Sound familiar (my current life is not much different) So Mike wrote "The most important thing I can tell you is to keep your eyes and focus on God....The Lord will answer your prayers (Jer. 33:3) and He wants to know about your problems (Ps. 142:1-2) The Lord still hears all of your prayers and requests (Ps 77:1) the Lord is living with us even when life hurts and things don't seem to make sense. I know I can't feel your pain and can't make things make sense, but I know that God makes all things work together and beautiful in His time. Don't give up on God or yourself things will make sense soon enough." Pretty funny how life cycles. I grew a lot during that last semester of school and well maybe that is why the trials where there. Now agian God is stretching me and yet I still struggle to trust that His plan is best, and turn to Him in prayer rather than just handle things on my own. Funny how Mike still talks to me through old letters and sermon notes. I am so thankful that I had him as a friend who directed me so often to the scripture and not to himself for emotional comfort and support. So now that I don't have him here for comfort and support I can still be directed to God who loves me more than Mike did and who is living with me working all my situations out for good. Mike left a legacy, I hope I live in such a way that my life will count for Christ and people will come to know Him better. Pray for boldness. Its what I had to be in college during that last semester and its how I need to be now. To live Christ to die Gain!

Monday, August 3, 2009

I forgot the dancing

This summer my crazy mom signed up for square dancing and line dancing and asked if I would join her. So i thought line dancing on mondays sounded better than square dancing on sundays. So a dancing queen I have been. Electric slide, elvira, tush push, cowboy hustle, blue rose, cowgirl twist, and so many more. While Im not very good my mom and I keep ourselves entertained either laughing at ourselves or the intensity of the others in the class. There are some who take it way too seriously!! Us Carlson girls just wanna have fun and so we laugh a lot!!

summer thus far

Ok so it has been requested that I update my blog, and since I love the O'Roarks (both generations) here is the summer recap:
June & July I had the opportunity to do my administrative field work (student teaching for principals) at an elementary school in Long Beach (minutes from CS and Leilani, I already miss stopping by on my way to and from work). I loved every part of it except that I was not being paid for my long hours, but it was a fabulous experience and has prompted me to start looking at different schools to work at and possibly venture to the elementary world. Kids are so cute and well not high schoolers. In any case its the first time in years I have been happy going to work.

Astrid and I also were able to take a trip to Santa Maria. So fun! Big trains little trains and great conversation with the O'Roarks. Love weekends there. Must do that again soon! I will post pictures later.

After I finally finished this course work I have had a few beach days which has been really nice. It has provided me with time to read (yes Astrid I finished a book already), and also time to reflect on who I am and where I want to be both physically and spiritually (and I have a long way to grow in both areas).

August has begun with competition. My brother competed on Fri and Sat nights in the inter-crew and taplin doing well in both although not the outcome he is satisfied with, always pushing himself to be the best I can learn a lot from him (and yes Leilani he is crazy) Night surf competitions are exciting and well my John Deere sweatshirt kept me warm and was a popular item the whole weekend. (I had several parties asking where I got it from. Thank you Kevin and Dini) Yesterday I swam pier to pier which is my one ocean water swim that I have done for 14 years now, why? The fun of competition. This year 1100 swimmers, the first year only a few hindered. it is exciting and challenging but the sense of accomplishment when you finish is amazing. It is interesting to me all the thoughts I have while on my super long endurance races this one much shorter than the marathon by about 4 hours. It was difficult this year as I couldn't find Ed until about half way, but I know that even if he can't do it one year I can do it alone, only slower and not in a straight path, I was all over the place ask the lifeguards that were watching. The current was not pushing us rather was against us but even with that my arms felt good, my stomach did not, the choppy surf makes for a crampy stomach and having only taken one Dramamine before entering the water I wished I had taken 2! but at least I didn't feed the fish this year. The finish was the hared part as my calves cramped as I tried to watch the waves and reach the bottom to run. Fun times running out of the water with the thought that your legs aren't going to hold your weight. But all in all a great Sunday morning workout. Next year more training for the marathon and the swim!

Now I am preparing for Australia. Leilani helped me buy some essentials on Saturday. She should be a personal shopper, although I take most of what she says looks good back as I am stuck in my plain jane ways of dressing, but alas one day I will actually have to dress my age and perhaps a pattern or two wouldn't hurt me, however sweats, flips, and tank tops are more my style. So I now have a cute pair of shoes which for once look better on big feet than little ones (sorry Leilani, but I saved you some money with you not buying them) I have purchased my tickets to the opera house and talked with Libby about all the places we want to go. I am excited and cant wait to see more of God's amazing creation. I am excited about my 20 day journey. I will be back at the end of the month (so Leilani you can rest and not worry I'm not planning on moving there or not returning I have my boys to come back to)

SO that is summer in a quick overview of the summer so far!