Monday, December 30, 2013

Notes from 2013 - The Sabbatical Year in New Jersey

This time last year, Hubs and I were making preparations for our intercontinental move from Europe to the United States. It would be a sabbatical year with our furry babies in our former home, New Jersey.

This 2013, as a Domestic Engineer, I * Cooked less but ate more. * Baked 4 breads, many pies, cupcakes and crumbles. * Rehoused our possessions by giving them to friends.

As a Cat Mom, I * Travelled with my meowing babies on the plane. * Sadly said goodbye to Fluffy, laying him to rest in his hometown.

As a Maker, I * Completed 9 dresses, refashioned 2, and self-drafted 2 skirts. * Re-vamped JuanitaTortilla jewellery. * Unravelled a dress only to re-knit it, and crochet 1 giant granny square. * Let my Etsy store take a backseat.

As a Wanderlust-er and Trailing Spouse, I * Saw Einsiedeln Abbey in Canton Schwyz, Switzerland. * Visited the New Jersey State Fair. * Took a hot air balloon ride. * Road-tripped to: North Carolina & Virginia Beach; Cape May; Atlantic City; and Boston & Plymouth. * Trekked NYC 9 times. * Followed The Hubs to Costa Rica, Windsor in London, and Edinburgh where we had that unforgettable TED Global experience.

As a Field Photographer for Conservation Drones, I saw bits of Belize, Panama, Cameron Highlands, and Nepal.

As a blogger, I * Met online friends in the flesh, affirming that this blog is a community of friends. (3 holiday-makers in New York; 1 spontaneously in Edinburgh.) * Celebrated friends on this space. * Participated in 2 swaps.

As hosts in this little town, we * Indulged guests and ourselves with local delights of Cupcake-War-winning House of Cupcakes and PJ's Pancake House for the pancake overload experience. * Enjoyed the company of: Simon; Janice and Sou; Ankara and Luna; Ming and family; John and Zuzana; my parents and sister; and the Conservation Drones' growing family.

Also, I * Finally got behind the wheel to drive, albeit in a very small town. * Over-indulged in cupcakes and all the wonderful sugary snacks America has to offer. Yes, even at a ripe old age of 35. * Enjoyed revisiting this place we call our second home; to see the changes after 5 years or none at all. And to be with old friends once again. * Did not fulfill all 13 things I wished to do in 2013, but that's okay. * Duly noted the importance of presence instead of presents.

2013 caught us off guard with the prospect of starting a new life Down Under.

Like deja vu, this year-end winter is marked with online house-hunting in a faraway place and packing our lives into suitcases, once again. Who knows what 2014 will bring...


  1. I love that first photo - although I'm shivering just thinking about how cold it must be! I hope I can visit you next year in Adelaide! :D

  2. I love this photos maybe is because snow is like a mystical dream in our side of the country. Happy New Year.

  3. You have done so much and visited so many places in the last year. It has been fun following you and will look forward to hearing about your new life in Australia.
    Sarah x

  4. OOh i love the photo of you in the snow! There is definitely no snow down under! Enjoy your last days in USA and look forward to seeing your Australia posts soon! x


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