Friday, August 24, 2007

Jeremy is here!

Blogging has been sporadic on my end lately because being in the States hasn't seemed all that exciting (or at least, not really in keeping with the theme of the blog). But I realize that blogs in general aren't supposed to be exciting, and that the only people who read this are people who already know us, or so I assume.

Anyway, here's the update: Jeremy has been in Virginia for a week and a half now, and we're getting used to being in the same city (or the same state, country, hemisphere, whatever). That's going pretty well. We went down to the Outer Banks to hang out with my family (they're on a few weeks' vacation down there, but I couldn't get any time off from training to do more than a weekend) last weekend, and are going again tomorrow after I get out of class on Friday, and then again over Labor Day weekend. I love the Outer Banks (my family has been going there for like 20 years), and I think Jeremy is starting to love it, too.

In other news, I recently found out that I made tenure. In the Foreign Service, tenure means that you have been found to have what it takes to have a successful career. State gives you five years to make tenure, and if you don't, you get kicked out. I don't have any statistics, but I don't think the getting kicked out part happens that often.

And finally, Jeremy and ordered our wedding rings earlier this week. I came home from class all in a tizzy that we hadn't made any wedding decisions in the recent past, and so we headed out to the mall and figured out what we wanted (plain white-gold bands). Then we ordered them online (much cheaper). They should arrive next week. I'm excited!

Saturday, August 11, 2007

What was I thinking

to go and run a triathalon at 9 AM on a Saturday??? Granted, it was a sprint and I split it with my dad, but man, I'm so out of shape. But hey, at least I'm doing something more than just playing golf and reading. See, I'm getting out and doing something productive with my time ;)

Our neighborhood association holds an annual triathalon as part of their annual August neighborhood community celebration week. So, after learning that we won the 4th of July regatta and for a little male family bonding, we decided to enter and see how we'd do.

Dad did the swim (back and forth across the lake, about 300 meters) and I did the bike (2 miles) and the run (1.1 miles). Thank goodness for a little AC/DC, Outkast, Poison, Jackson 5, Rage Against the Machine and Def Leppard on the iPod because I was so out of it after the bike that I didn't know how fast I could run.

But, amazingly, we won!!!! A total time of a little over 17 minutes isn't going to scare anyone serious about triathalons, but it was enough to capture us the trophy. Too bad I won't be back next year to defend the trophy, but maybe my brother will be around to grab the torch and run with it.

And with this victory, that makes the Richart household the recent badasses of stupid human pet tricks in the neighborhood!!

So, here are a couple of pictures. I'll put up a picture with the engraving on the trophy when I get it.

The Richart team: Fred and Jeremy

The finish line and cheering crowd

In the iPod zone:

Wearing the yellow jersey at the end of the race!

The winning team:

Friday, August 10, 2007

One of the great things about America ...

... is the variety of food we can get here. Today was the best dinner I've made since I returned to the States, and it involved three ingredients I could not get in Armenia: hot Italian sausage, kale and shallots. I sauteed them with chopped red pepper and mixed it up in a bowl - healthy carbless gumbo, and man, was it good.

(My sisters make fun of me because I like to talk about what I eat every day, including lists of ingredients, and because I love watching Rachael Ray on the Food Network. I'm even more annoying now that I'm trying to lose weight before the wedding -- I know the calorie content of every thing that goes in my mouth. I think Jeremy's really going to enjoy that about me when he gets here in just five days!)

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The Melting Pot of July 4th

I know that this has been a long time in coming, but hey, I've been busy watching HBO and golfing. But, I finally got the pictures back from our 4th of July party and they are pretty good. Masha was in town and so of course we tossed her into the lake's annual 4th of July regatta. Hey, she's family now. She has to do this stuff. Us kids have all suffered through the years, so now it's her turn.

So, these are from that regatta (notice the dry ice and smoke for the "melting pot").

Even beat the family of Shrek characters. Don't ask us how, but we captured a 6-year-old judge's heart with our patriotic theme!!!

Oh, and we won!!! Maybe it had something to do with the hired mercenary known as cousin Michael? (The guy with the gun shooting the camera.) Hey, whatever works.

So much love!!!

From the other half

Well, I know that everyone hasn't heard a lot from me a lately. It's not like I've been busy lately, at least compared to Masha. But it's busy, with time divided between tennis and golf with my dad, golf with friends, decorating with my mom and volunteering out at a camp. It's been tough to get my golf swing back, but hey, I'm trying on a daily basis. Hopefully the time off has allowed my body to forget how to slice. We'll see.

But I'm moving to DC next week, next Tuesday. The packers come on Monday and then I'm on a flight on Tuesday. Less than one week and then Masha and I can start living without worrying when our next separation will happen.