All the pictures are off the walls now, packed up and it’s time for a trip to the storage place. 

In the midst of all that, my son arrived home from China. He had a great time overall, and it has been fun to see his pictures and hear his stories.

Then on Saturday afternoon we drove to Charlotte for him to redeem a NASCAR driving experience certificate we had given him 2-1/2 years ago! He went 151.59 mph! It’s quite a different population of people who frequent the speedway.Image

My son sitting in the driver’s seat!

It was an interesting experience and he said it was quite an adrenaline rush. I felt it too, and I was just watching!

He’s headed back to Wilmington soon and my daughter is arriving on Monday! I hope to make a final push this week while she is here to get everything into storage that needs to go.

My kids’ grandmother very thoughtfully sent me a package in anticipation of my travels and I am anticipating a fun going away dinner Monday evening.

The main worries left to me are whether or not I will get my papers authenticated in time to travel and what to do with my house if it doesn’t sell before I leave. These are biggies, but I am trying to continue to trust it will all work out.

A week in two days

This is likely an exaggeration, but it’s how I feel. Since this is my blog I’m going to bore you with the details.

I set my alarm (only the 2nd time all summer) so that I could be in downtown Raleigh by 8 a.m. at the NC Secretary of State’s office. I wasn’t sure just where it was so pulled into the first public parking I saw, which turned out to be about 8 blocks away. Of course this is the beginning of the summer heat wave. 🙂 I hiked down to the office and passed along the documents I needed them to authenticate. I had 3 needing authentication and 2 of them needed to be REnotarized for whatever reason. I then walked them down to a State Employee’s Credit Union and had someone there notarize them (again!!) and walked back to the State Dept. I left them and $30 and returned to Chapel Hill. Traffic was backed up for 10 miles due to a tractor trailer cab that had caught fire. I finally got back about 10:15 and had to head for Enterprise where I had for 11 a.m. reserved a cargo van. I picked it up and returned home to load all my This End Up furniture into the van, with the help of a very good friend (my neighbor has noticed her coming and going and said, “Boy, she must be a VERY good person.” She is.). Then we hit the road at about 12:45 toward Asheville. With a brief stop at a car place along the way because tire pressure was wrong and a very kind young man checked all 4 tires AND the spare!! We arrived about 4 and immediately unloaded the furniture into my daughter’s apartment and her current furniture back into the van. We had a delightful shower and then dinner at Wicked Weed! A brief night’s sleep (and the 3rd alarm for the summer) put us on the road back to Chapel Hill by about 6:15 a.m. We stopped for breakfast at some point and arrived back in time enough to unload back into my house (so I have something to sit on until my house sells) and return the van by 11:00 a.m. Then it was a quick and early lunch and I was back on the road to Raleigh again to pick-up the aforementioned documents all duly authenticated returning home by a little before 2:00 p.m.

Then I began a very infuriating experience with Time Warner, who provides my internet service. (I can’t get consistent connection, so of course downloading anything is impossible. BOO HISS TWC) I needed a document to include with the selfsame aforementioned documents (SSAD) to send to the US Department of State for authentication there. Exhaustion caused me to end up in tears more times than I would care to say. I finally gave up, showered and gleefully met two great friends for drinks. It was just the right tonic. haha.

After getting back home I tried again to no avail, to download the cover document for my SSAD. My neighbor (the one who noticed my good friend) called and said, “Email it to me. I’ll print it out.” So I did, and after an encouraging chat with her I came back home and fell into bed.

This morning I got up and tried to get everything in order, checking, double-checking, and triple-checking. Then I headed off to mail it so I could track it there and back up to DC and the US Dept. of State. A fellow new hire then emailed saying she had been waiting for 10 days (they say it will only take 3) for her packet. AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!

Prayers and positive thoughts would be greatly appreciated for my packet’s trek and for the sale of my house. (I am writing this at a coffee shop while my house is showing. This makes the 15th showing, but no one has bitten yet.) I’m trying not to worry and fret as it just gets me in a tizzy and does nothing to help things along. 

Whew! Long post. Thanks for your thoughts, encouragement, prayers, and help in this process.


Just returned from a walk while my house was being shown for the 12th time. It seems like showings have picked up, but no one has made an offer yet. Tomorrow I plan to pack up the kitchen and if someone wants to see the house they’ll just have to see the packing process too. I still feel quite positive about all this in spite of having to drop the price. I DO believe it is going to sell before I leave. 

Someone has put a deposit down on my car, so I only have it for another week. I’m a little sad about that. I didn’t realize how attached I had gotten to it. However, it is one more thing checked off my list of things to get done. Check!

Then there’s the visa process. Boy, oh boy, what a pain. No one wants to do the test for malaria and filaria (worms in the blood). My doctor wrote a note saying that I don’t have a travel history nor symptoms and we don’t live in a country that would warrant the check, but I would hate to be denied entry because I didn’t have the test. So, my doctor has prevailed on a lab tech to run a cursory test and write up a lab report on it. Then I have to take all my lab tests (5), letter from my doctor, notarized diploma, background check, and visa to the NC State Dept. in Raleigh to have it “authenticated” at $10/document. Once I get that back (it takes a day), I have to send it all via Fed Ex to the US Dept. of State with a return Fed Ex envelope and $25/document. Once that returns I have to Fed Ex it to the Kuwait Embassy and for $200 they will verify permission to enter their country on my visa and return it to me in the self-provided Fed Ex envelope. It isn’t cheap to go live in Kuwait!

Perhaps next weekend I’ll move my This End Up furniture up to Asheville and bring back a sofa and chair to tide me over until I’m out of the house. Once my son gets back from China I will determine the next big steps. 


Whew, it’s been a long time since I’ve posted anything. That is due to the fact that my son took his computer with him to China and I had to turn in my school computer. I am in the process of getting a new one, but, well, it’s a process.

I have had several showings of the house, but nothing has come of it. Now I’m thinking about reducing my price as I really want it to sell before I leave. It is getting cleared out, slowly but surely. Many things are up on craigslist and a few have gone. I thought I had the bunk beds sold, but they wimped out when they had to help me move them down the stairs. They just drove away leaving the door off the jam and the bed in the living room. Nice. Mature.

Meanwhile, my car (2005 Toyota Camry) is for sale as well. Not much action on it either, so the price just came down.

I have several trips to make to the thrift shop and one to storage.

On Wednesday, my visa finally arrived! Woohoo! I have my background check, my doctor’s clearance letter (though I still need the lab results), and hope my diploma (certified) and transcripts arrive soon. Then I need to take it to the NC Dept. of State in Raleigh, the US Dept. of State in DC, and the Kuwait Embassy in DC.

Working away.