Thursday, November 27, 2008


I did sign it!

Jack received the envelope and after he stopped laughing over that horrible picture, he could check the papers and off course saw that I did sign.

Oh well, when the journey continues similar things will happen again ;-)

In the meantime I have to tell you about this little gadget that jack brought over his last visit that I love now.
It is called the Magic jack and it allows me to call through my computer.
It isn't like those other internet services, but with this little gadget in your pocket, you can call the US and Canada from every pc all over the world for just 20 dollars a year.
Right now it is connected to my pc all the time meaning I can call all the time if I wanted to.
Now, I have my own, US phone number, local to the area Jack lives.
Meaning that people could call me also from that area without knowing they are connected with Europe.
Which was quite funny when it rang this week (yes, it rings like an old fashioned phone) and I, expecting to hear Jack on the other side, said hi in a rather intimate way.
The poor lady on the other side only wanted someone of the Jones family.
Guess I need to keep that in mind from now on.

But this thing is great, Jack has one also that he can take on travels when he goes abroad and keep in contact with the office if needed.
Also now I can call whenever I want without fearing huge phone bills since I am not restricted to calling his Magic Jack. When Jack would call my number from the office or from home, he would pay for a local call.
LOL, not sure if I am still making sense here.

It is a great little gadget which allows me to call some friends in the US and Canada also.
And by the time I move to the US, this little gadget will go to my parents so they don't need to worry about making expensive phone calls.

it has a neat light in it also

Thursday, November 20, 2008

You know how it is...

you're in the car, on your way to an important meeting, or on your way to the airport to take the plane for a vacation and you are about an hour from home and you suddenly realize, you forgot to turn off the coffee machine...

What do you do, go back, probably to find out you did turn it off, or do you drive on, worrying the rest of your day if the house will be burned down when you get back.

I had that moment yesterday, I went over and over the papers that I sent Jack and yesterday I suddenly started thinking I forgot to sign my letter of intent.
The more I think about it, the more I know I forgot. Silly off course.
And even if I forgot, Jack is still waiting for several papers, so if I forgot there is plenty of time to get a new, signed one to him.

My only dilemma now is, do I send him a new one now, or do I wait until he got it and check if I signed.

If this is how it is going to be the next months, I am going to be a basket case very soon.
Or am I already?
Who knows, maybe I should return to my therapy from this moment.
In Cape May we found this shop, filled to the rim with embroidery patterns.
I couldn't help but get a little piece to see if I still like it. And I still love cross stitching. The finished piece will be a small addition to our Christmas decorations and in the mean time it takes my mind of all the things that I can think of that can go wrong.

Grrrr, had to edit my yours and you're's
LOL, know that is wrong but it sounds funny.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I'm done

With my part of the paperwork that is.
Yesterday I brought my envelope to the post office, hoping that everything is filled out all right and Jack won't get a heart attack over the picture that I had to add.
But first off all I have to thank Fleur for translating some papers for me.
Fleur, you are wonderful and fast. Thank you!

All in all, this part was relatively easy for me, although I had to ask my parents their birth date and place. Which is kind of embarrassing, realizing that you aren't entirely sure about that part of your parents past. My Mom was sweet about it though.
After reading everything carefully, everything was pretty clear.
And finding that Fleur could do the translation of some of my Dutch papers made it even better.
Worst was the picture that had to be taken, it had to be US size...
And I had to take out all my earrings. Which, for the people who know me is more than just the two most people have, add the little ring in my nose to it, than you can imagine that I felt naked without it.
After some research on the net it became clear that I wouldn't have to go through too much trouble to find the right photographer. There is one in Groningen that does US size visa pictures. I was back home in 3 hours where I spent 45 minutes to get those earrings back in.

Anyway, I am done for now, my stuff is on its way to the US where Jack will add it to all the paperwork he has to get together. That is, if he still wants that after seeing the terrible picture, lol.

I wish they would allow you to smile on those.
No wonder those immigration people look like they are in a bad mood, I would be if I had to look at those depressing pictures all day.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's for real now

After seeing Jack, whether it is here or there, I am aways in a daze for about a week after. Not feeling like I want to do anything and on the other side a huge feeling of frustration.

This time it is different, this time we got what we wanted.
The main reason for Jack coming over was meeting with my son's Dad. We didn't want to start the K1 visa procedure without knowing for sure if my son would come with me.
And now we know, my son can come with me.

This all means that we are making real plans now, no more 'what if's'.
The day after the meeting we went out with my parents and told them our future plans. They didn't seem to be shocked at all, think they saw it coming.
But even though we talked a lot about our plans that night, it still didn't seem real to me yet.
Not until the day before Jack left and we went through the website that tells us the steps we have to take now.
Together we found out what paperwork to get together to get started.
Jack has to file for I129F Petition for Alien Fiance so we can get the K1 visa.

When we started reading up on this it sounded really complicated but now that we are looking at it closely, it isn't too bad. Just a lot of paperwork.
The whole process can be found here

At this moment we are both gathering paperwork and filled in a form about our background, 4 times.
For me it is still very easy, my work comes when I have to prepare for my interview at the embassy in a few months, Jack has to do most work now.
He has to get proof together of us meeting, having a relationship, get proof together that he can sponsor us and a lot more.

While gathering my papers it started to get through to me, we are actually doing it now!
Our goal is to get our papers over at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) before the 1st of December.

We'll try to keep everyone up-dated through our blog so you can travel with us on our way to the US and our life together.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Y'All Come Back Again Now, Y'Hear?

When you visit the Southern states here in the US, you may hear that phrase inviting you to come back again and take in the unique southern way of life. I think we are fortunate in that we have several very distinct regions in the US that are all so very different from each other and worth experiencing. I hope to take Petra and her son on a tour of the US over the next few years to see it all

But I also have a desire to see as much of the world as possible on this journey and having just come back from another visit to your wonderful country, I realized again the differences and why every american, if possible, should travel the world and see things with open eyes and a willingness to absorb the great history and cultures on this planet. With that being said, I would encourage people from around the world to come and visit us also and do so in the same way, with open eyes and a willingness to appreciate what makes America unique.

A few thoughts keep coming back to me after every visit to the Netherlands. They are not earth shattering ideas or rooted in political views but just some basic lifestyle things that make me feel comfortable every time I am there.

First, I love being in a country that is flat enough and small enough that people actually use bicycles to get around if they choose to. I have to say that one of the first things I look forward to is renting the bicycle and going about daily life knowing that I don't have to jump in the car to get everything done. Here, the great distances, and in my case, the hilly terrain makes using the bike very difficult. Also the bus and train service in the NL is terrific. I hope we realize that over the next generation in the US that we need to develop these services where possible. Again the great distances here are a little more challenging.

I love that on a nice day the Dutch take advantage by going on nice walks. On this walk I saw entire families, dogs and all, out enjoying nature. Good luck getting your kids here to get excited when you tell the, "let's go on a walk as a family."

Museums and lots of them. They say that there are more museums in the NL per population than any other country. I believe it and they are all interesting. In my opinion, we would be so far better off if a family outing involved visiting a museum instead of going to the mall and McDonalds for something to do.

You would have to be brain dead not to appreciate the beauty of a typical European street that might look like this. Being a relatively new country, we don't see stuff like this. Yes, we have our own charming places and we have been getting much better at preserving them but come on....I could walk up and down streets like this for hours and enjoy the fact that every other shop isn't a fast food joint. LOL

Town squares or plaza's. I love them. A great place to people watch and get a sense of community when large crowds gather and meet. When the towns and cities of the US were built, the square was used in many places but over time, most have gone. The space gobbled up by new office buildings or shops. What a shame.

I could go on and on but wanted to share a few things that seem to keep coming back to me every time I visit. I guess my idea here is that we are all different in good ways and there is so much to appreciate on both continents if you keep your eyes open and not go with preconceived ideas about a people or a country. I am really lucky that I have reason now to experience all of this. Thanks for anoter great time Petra.