A Day to be Thankful

Happy Thanksgiving!

Every year our Thanksgiving dinner always starts off with going around the table and each person saying what they are thankful for.

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While I won’t be sitting around my families Thanksgiving table this year (this was my year to be upgraded from the kid table to!) I have so much to be thankful for so Unlocking Kiki has now become my own personal Thanksgiving table to share my thanks with. Don’t worry, I will do a shortened version of all that I am thankful for it would take far to much time to write them all down, and besides there is a pumpkin roll to be ate!

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This Thanksgiving I am thankful for:

My Family

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I may be the only blonde but these are my people and no matter where in the world I may be I always know that are behind me 100 percent. Whether I need someone to listen to my breakdowns, help pack my bags, or give me a pep talk, I can always count on my family.

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They also provide airport pickups, crazy outfits included. Ya, I know there awesome.

Life as an expat brings many challenges. From visa troubles, language barriers, and homesickness, you never know what you may deal with next.  Having family support to rely on, as I am sure many of my fellow expats would agree, is such a blessing. One skype or phone call from home can really help to get you through those tough times abroad.

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They are pretty amazing and I gladly claim them, even if they go in public in their pajamas I still love them 😉

My Travels

The first time I left the country was when I was 21 and headed to Australia for a 3-month internship.

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Since then I haven’t stopped and have visited 7 more countries, and am looking forward to visiting many more.

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Rome 2012

 An entire blog series is necessary to describe how travel has changed me (which probably will be happening at some point so be on the look out for it)but I still wanted to mention it here. Without travel I wouldn’t be where I am today and I am so thankful for this opportunity I have to live in Iceland.

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This Guy

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And of course I am always thankful for wine, lots of wine 😉

But seriously I am so thankful for this guy. Having spent most of our 3 year relationship long distance I am so happy to finally have my best friend, travel buddy, my favorite comedian, and my biggest supporter in the same country as me.

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Hopefully one year I can show him what Thanksgiving is all about. You know, eating so much you have to unbutton your pants(or your smart and just wear stretchy pants to the feast), napping on the couch, waking up to eat more, quality family time. 🙂

My Dog

Ya I know, I am totally that crazy dog lady and proud of it.  In my defense how could I not be with such an adorable pup, just look at that face.Azora

Yes my dog really does need an entire photo collage dedicated to her 🙂 Really though I love my dog and she deserved a shout out on Thanksgiving. Sadly she is not with me in Iceland, fur coats don’t go to well with her body shape;) Instead she decided to stay in rainy Oregon where she is spoiled rotten by my family. She does tend to make appearances on skype, well more like she tries to lay onto of the computer, were working on it.

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While I have so much more to be thankful for this year I will stop there because I keep getting distracted by the delicious pictures of food my family is sending me. Check out this picture of a pumpkin trifle my parents made.IMG_5620                   Drool worthy, this will need to be made when I am home, even if its in middle of summer!

I am off to skype with my family so they will stop taunting me with all these pictures of delicious food. I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Does your family have any traditions on Thanksgiving?                                              My family always gets together the night before Thanksgiving to prepare most of the food. It helps make Thanksgiving day a little less stressful with most of the preparation already done. It is always a great time with my family, lots of dancing in the kitchen, taste testing all the foods, and a kitchen full of laughter, doesn’t get better than that.

How about you all? Any special traditions in your family for Thanksgiving?

Góðan Daginn

Góðan daginn 🙂

Hello and happy Monday to everyone! I hope you all had a great weekend. My weekend was nice and relaxing, just what I needed after a busy week.

No body does relaxing as good as these two. If only my dogs could fly over for a visit!

On Saturday we were invited to a baby baptism, which in Iceland is very common and also when the baby’s name is first announced. Babies typically aren’t named until there are around 2 months old and so the naming of the baby is a big part of the baptism. Before the baptism begins you can hear people in the crowd taking their guess at what the babies name will be and who the baby will be named after.

Coming from America where couples tend to have names picked out before they are even pregnant, not naming a baby until it is a few months old is a very new concept to me and I was curious to see what the day would be like. Of course in my mind I envisioned Cam and Lily from Modern Family and the circle of life theme song playing.

Shockingly this was not what occurred. However we did get to sing songs, well everyone else sang songs, I just stared at the paper with the songs on it trying my best to sound out one or two words. The priest said a few traditional Icelandic hymns and blessings for the baby, of which I understood a few words. Even though I don’t really have any idea what was said during the baptism I thought it was really interesting to get to experience such a traditional Icelandic celebration.

When the priest had finished the parents then announced the name of the baby (no, the circle of life song never was played ;( ) Icelandic names typically have meanings behind them and parents take a lot of time into naming their child for they want them to have a name that means something important and that the child will be proud to have as a name. I think this is so cool and now I think I need to ask my parents why I don’t have a name with some awesome meaning.

Our Sunday was exactly what Sundays are supposed to be. We slept in, stayed in our pajamas tell noon, and of course ate delicious pancakes.

My Grandma made these pancakes, called German Pancakes, every time we stayed at her house. My mom always made these for us as well every year for the first day of school. They are still a favorite breakfast treat of mine even as an adult:)

Even though it was a bit gloomy outside there was no rain or wind, which in Iceland means it’s a prefect day to be outside. Here are some pictures of our walk around our neighborhood.

If you have ever had the chance to visit Iceland you will know what I am talking about when I say that there are no norms in house colors here. Any colors go and you see anything from neon yellow to pink, and I love it!

I am pretty much in love with this door, I walk by this building everyday and just love the bright red door and multicolor of the building.

They even have a bar named after me, and of course it is painted in neon multicolors.
Our weekend concluded with none other than…

As someone that read the entire book series in just a few weeks I was more than excited to go see the movie. I just love all the costumes and makeup, makes me want to throw a Hunger Games themed costume party to see what everyone would come up with. Anyone else see the movie yet? What did you think?

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend. The days are getting darker and darker here so the Monday blues are getting a bit harder to fight. Good thing we have our vitamin D and Lysi (which Icelanders swear by).
Have a great week!