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A complete and unintentional ramble! And update =)

January 4, 2013

As I sat down to upload pictures onto my laptop, and then onto this blog, I was suddenly reminded of why I started this blog in the first place, five years ago. It was because I had started a new job that was, at times, dreadfully slow and boring, and so I decided to start blogging to give me something to do! I had no idea then that I would actually continue to keep it updated! I am really thankful though for that whim five years ago, because the blog has given me a fun, creative outlet and travel journal to reference back to at times when I have questions about something. (Thank you, search bar!)

And in 3 weeks I will be leaving that job! (Albeit a different position than I originally started in, one not as boring!) I am SO thankful for the past five years at this job. God blessed me so much when He dropped it into my lap, and I had no idea then just how much of a blessing it would be! I love being able to look back and see all the things that God was doing and orchestrating, things that at the time I had no idea about. It’s been almost 6 years since I finished grad school (I can’t believe it!) and moved back to California, and those 6 years have been so, so, so much fun! I had no idea, really,  what life after grad school would look like. To be honest, at first I felt a bit lost. Life in school is so structured, so predicable, so…already planned out for you, that to suddenly not have that felt really weird. (And the dissolution of a close friendship near the same time also helped that lost feeling feel even more…lost, ha. Dumb boys!) I felt like I was living life in a daze during that time, just going through the motions but not really sure what to do next. It was such a weird, and new feeling to me. But God brought so many good things and great people into my life, that it soon felt like I was living on a major “high” – life after school was incredible! I was loving it! Not to mention I had just been bitten by the travel bug and discovering the beauty of the world was unreal.

Looking back on the past 6 years, I feel overwhelmingly blessed. God has been so good to me and I truly can’t thank Him enough for all of His goodness in my life. I don’t deserve any of it.

Wow, that was a MAJOR rabbit trail, and walk down memory lane. Sorry about that, I really just intended to post a picture of my passport on it’s way to San Francisco, ha!

So, here’s that pic:

visa 022

I kinda felt like I had just mailed off my baby or something when I dropped it off. =/ My passport is one of my most loved possessions, and to send it off by itself was sad. Haha. Seriously though. I’ve been tracking it on FedEx’s website ever since. 😉

Okay, but anyways…I think I have done a bad job at keeping the blog updated as to my plans. People keep asking, and I keep telling them individually, but since plans kept changing seemingly daily, I just stopped blogging about it. BUT, as of right now, I THINK I might know what will happen. =) Here’s all I know at this point: I applied for a 3 month, double entry visa, since I was unable to secure a letter of invitation for my year long visa, multiple entry visa. (Double entry only cost 20.00 more and gives me the option to leave Russia once during that 3 months, just in case I need/want to) The consulate offices are closed until Jan 9th due to Orthodox Christmas and New Years. SO, I wasn’t in any big hurry to apply since I knew it would only sit there until Jan 9th anyways. BUT, the company says this visa will take 15 business days to process, and counting Jan 9th as the first day, I have 18 business days until I leave. So it’s cutting it somewhat close. The guy at the company mistakenly told me I only had 14 business days left, but not to worry, if it got close they could expedite it. When I saw, however, that to expedite it, it would cost over $900.00. I DID worry just a bit. I could change my plane ticket for only $50.00 so I would have rathered change my flight than pay all that money! When I told him I had thought I had 18 days, he told me he had miscalculated by a week and that yes, I was right. Whew.

Anyways…so, Lord willing, I will be leaving Feb 3rd on a 3 month visa. My plan as of now is to try and secure a letter of invitation for a year long visa while I am over there (which means finding a job who will sponsor it), leave Russia right before my visa expires, from there fly to Sweden to visit my friend who is a missionary there, and from there fly to Ireland to meet up with a friend (we had already been planning to do this in May, before I found out I’d be having to leave Russia in May anyways) and from Ireland fly back home to apply for my year long visa. That is all contingent, of course, on getting this first visa to begin with. =)

People have been asking me if I am stressing out about plans being so up in the air and about going with no job already lined up. And to be honest, I’m not. I’m not because I know that God will take care of me and show me what He wants me to do, and because part of  my whole reason for going was to shake things up a little (I had gotten really comfortable here) and be forced to live by faith again. So, it only makes sense that God would let me go with things completely up in the air. It’s definitely making me live by faith. =) So to stress out would be really counter-intuitive to living by faith! Not that not stressing in this situation comes naturally to me, because it doesn’t, but I am choosing to simply not worry and trust God. He has already promised to take care of my needs so there really is no reason to worry anyways.

So, that’s really all I know at this point. Now you know as much as I do. =)

I appreciate your prayers that my visa be approved and sent back to me in time to leave on time, for safe flights, and that I will be exactly where God wants me this year, whatever that may be, that I will continue to grow and learn to trust God more, and that I can be a blessing wherever I am. I so appreciate all of the people who have already told me they are praying for me. I probably need it more than most! =)

Thank you!!

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