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COUNTING DOWN
Time keeps on slipping, slipping, slipping into the future. I love that line. It's such a perfect way to think about the fact that the present is so fleeting and time moves so fast and the future is so very, very hard to grasp, because it's always transformed into the present just as we get it in our hot little hands.

The weekend has slipped into the past, now it's after 10 p.m. on Sunday. It slipped away in a welter of snapshot images from the lenses of my eyes: Karin playing soccer, the swirly clouds, a beautiful sunset after a day of grey. White lilacs and popping peonies and a quick visit from my cousin Cate, 2 of her daughters, London the dog and a visiting friend with child in tow. The suitcases have been brought down from the attic, and stand ready to be filled with the minimum of necessities. It's hard to believe I will be on a plane in 4 short days.

I couldn't check in online yet, though I did try, and I couldn't even pick seats, which has me a bit worried as I don't want to be separated from the kids for the transatlantic flight, even by a few rows. It's bumming me out that Anders won't be with us, though I know we'll be just fine. I've got the passports and the shopping lists and a couple of books of crossword puzzles, and presents for family and piles of clothing started, and a million lists in my head of things that have to be done each day in order to be ready to leave on time.

I can't wait to see my mom and my brother and his wife, and my sister and her family and my aunts and uncles and grandma and cousins and their kids and my college roommates and my friends in Chicago and my friends from Texas. When you move this far away from your family, it's like a physical ache sometimes, that separation.

We can't get back to the States as a family every year, though that would be my dream ideal. The last time we were there as a family was Easter 2007. That's MUCH too long, as far as I'm concerned. It bothers me that my kids don't see my mom and their cousins as often as I could like. That they will grow up not having the same kind of connection to their extended family...MY extended family, that I have. We do our best to instill it, to stress its importance and to nurture every opportunity, but there's no denying that distance makes a difference. Despite email and phone calls and and blogging and facebook, there's no substitute for face-to-face time with our loved ones.

Burny Candle-Bright Belated Birthday Wishes to Jeanine, Heather and anniz!
 excited
mood: excited
music: Michael Franti & Spearhead—Say Hey (I Love You)


Comments
(Anonymous)

I can't believe you don't have seats yet! I usually can pick mine when I book the tickets> I so hope that you can all get together. Sometimes someone is willing to trade. And, I also can;t wait until I have you in my hug! Love, Lizardmom

I don't think I had the option to pick seats when I booked, but I shall go online right now again and see if I can get them dealt with!!

(Anonymous)

I hope you will have a great time and that you and your kids get to spend a lot of time with your family. For how long will you be away?

I can understand that physical ache... I don't know if I could manage to move away from the little family I have left, they are all I have. But of course, I have no family of my own - things would be different then.

Imagine times before phones and internet... how did people manage??
And before flights, when mail distribution, (and travelling!), took moths...

Once again, I wish you a great trip. Will you write a blog post here and there to let us know you are ok? :)

Hugs
Mia

http://mias.blogg.se


If I have time and my mom's dial-up modem cooperates, I'm sure I'll manage a blog post or two :)

Have a great trip! I didn't know you'd lived in Texas at some point! Did you go to school there? (I'm from Dallas, originally.)

I lived in Texas for a very short time as a baby, doesn't really count. My friends that are visiting from there used to live in Sweden :)

Edited at 2010-06-14 05:10 am (UTC)

(Anonymous)

I love Say Hey, "time keeps on slipping" and that you have wished me a happy birthday! Enjoy your trip and if for some reason you get shipwrecked in Kansas (highly unlikely since who in the hell comes to Kansas and besides, there's no ocean here anyway), you are welcome to stop by!

-Heather

shipwrecked in Kansas! :D I've been to Kansas! Though, granted, it was a VERY long time ago! I'm afraid the nearest I'll get this trip is Normal, Illinois!

(Anonymous)
Joy here

Slip Sliding Away... one of the very few records we had when i was a kid. It was on the flip side of a long forgotten song and I remember holding it in my hands. It's funny to remember that, and now, time has slipped into the future I had no idea would come! Not only no concept of what growing up/ older was but no idea of the places the future would take me!

So, that song is about my most favorite songs of all time. :)

Have fun on your trip as the future slips into and out of your hands. :) The good thing... memories go on and on...

(Anonymous)
From Megsie

I can totally feel your excitement! You are almost here! Well. Not here, here, but in the USA! I hope you have a wonderful plane ride and enjoy your time with all those lovely family members that you write about. Oh, how fun!

Re: From Megsie

I know! I can't wait. It's taken so long to get here. I hope this week goes quickly! With the caveat that I get everything done!!

When Per and I went to the States (last month?!), I was also not allowed to check in online, although he could. *shakes head* *rolls eyes*

Have a great trip!

What's up with that? I finally got through to a customer service rep today and he was only able to give us seats for 3 of the flights. He said there were no seating assignments available for flights within Europe. ? Um, okay.

No idea. I'm just shaking my head right now because I don't understand how the travel industry works, and possibly neither does anyone.

Have a GREAT time!

Even if you can't book the seats together in advance, I'm sure they'll accommodate you once you get there. We weren't able to choose our seats for our wacky flight(s) home because they took down the whole online check-in because of that pesky volcano, but they put us together either at check-in or just asked people to move around on the plane.

Are your kids the oldest of the cousins or are they around the same ages? This summer I'm having two of my nieces here for a week and Ingrid has spent a week at their house two summers ago. Maybe you guys can do something similar sometime?

Our kids are stair-stepped age-wise with their cousins. Martin is older than my sister's daughter who is older than Karin, who is older then my sister's son. And if we add in my cousins' kids, mine fall somewhere in the middle :)

(Anonymous)
From Willow

I know what you mean about that physical ache of distance. We will always have one family far away too, California & Spain. Not sure what it will be like when we have children, but I'm always imagining that they'll be great travelers!

Re: From Willow

Our kids are pretty good at traveling already, that's for sure :)

Hope all your packing is going well! You're a brave woman, doing solo parent duty on the flights, though I'm sure well-traveled tweens are much easier to wrangle through airports than preschoolers (mine are well-traveled for their ages, but STILL...). Hopefully all the excitement will carry you all the way to the States without a hitch.

I hope so, too. I'm kind of a grumpy, stressy traveler, so I hope I can mellow out and not get all freaky on the kids.

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