A welcome home

I have discovered that I love airbnb.com. I didn’t know anything about it until my friend, Leland, told me about it on a recent trip. He uses it all the time. So when it came time to book our vacation to Croatia next year, we started and ended our search there. And if you saw my post from a few weeks ago, you know we’ve rented a spectacular hillside home on the Dalmation coast in Dubrovnik.

For those who don’t know about it, airbnb is a website that connects people wanting to rent their homes with people looking for accommodations. They have local hosts in 190+ countries.

We just used it for a second time to book our trip to Georgia next month. We’re going for a week, so we want to be comfortable with four people sharing digs. We also need a kitchen. We found a very cool apartment in downtown Atlanta on the 15th floor with amazing views of the city.

In case you’re wondering, the place will be cleaned and stocked for our stay. Clean sheets, fresh towels, sanitized bathroom, etc. We’ve traded emails with our host. Turns out he’s in Portugal sort of long term. And he might be selling the Atlanta apartment. I much prefer getting to know people and their stories than staying in a sterile hotel.

The price is right, too. It’s not dirt cheap, but it’s competitive with hotel pricing. It all depends what you’re looking for. This apartment is in a great location for us. We’re heading to Atlanta for Aspen to check out some colleges. We’re hitting up Emory, Georgia Tech and University of Georgia (in Athens).

We’ve already got her campus tours and information sessions booked. We’re also probably going to go to a home UGA football game. I’m really looking forward to that. At Emory, she will be able to attend a class.

She’s finally got some excitement about Georgia schools. She’s been digging in her heels a little since telling her we’re moving. Historically, she’d said that she wanted to fly the coop for college. Head off to Hawaii, California, somewhere with water. Suddenly, CU Boulder was all she could talk about. Don’t get me wrong. CU Boulder is great. I love the campus. It’s a great school. If she decides to go there, I’d be over the moon. But… only AFTER she makes an informed decision. I get it, she’s feeling a little like the rug’s been pulled out from under her. We’re uprooting her. But I explained that college is a short 4 years. After that, she can live wherever she wants. Go to grad school wherever she wants — Colorado or Georgia or Buenos Aires! The world is her oyster.

I’ve even talked with her about a gap year. I started Googling gap year opportunities and the list is nearly endless. I had no idea. There’s an huge industry dedicated to the concept. I think it’s a fantastic idea for kids who don’t know what they want to study or if they want to go to college (i.e. EVERYONE!). I think I want a gap year! Doesn’t that sound awesome. Just close your eyes and point! Off you go to Ecuador to help with water purification. Or a leadership challenge in Africa. Or a Sea-mester. (see what they did there?) I think maybe I could do this. But it’s not called a gap year for me, I think it’s called being an empty nester.

Make good choices!

Speaking of college, Aspen is retaking the ACT this Saturday. She took it once in April and did quite well. But she wanted to try for better math and science scores. So we signed her up for tutoring with an ACT prep company and with her former math tutor, Mr. Cowan. She has spent about 12 weeks preparing. She feels ready. They have given her some really useful tips for test taking. She says she’s going to “kill it” in science this time. And she feels that she can do better in math.

**Please, wherever you are, send Aspen all the good vibes and smarticles you can muster this Saturday morning.**

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That includes you, Einstein.

I’m going to be up cooking her brain food for breakfast, stuffing peppermint gum in her pockets and being the perfect blend of supportive and hands off, casual and flipping out, you know, as usual. What can I say? She’s used to me.

I feel peace in the rain

It’s been raining in Denver for two days and it’s supposed to rain for one more. This is rare for the Mile High City, but I love it. I can count on one hand the number of times in 9.5 years that I’ve awakened to the sound of rain. Snow, yes. But not rain. I love the feeling of cleansing and hydrating that rain offers.It makes me happy. When it’s raining outside, expect light choreography at the Ferracos. 🙂

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I had no idea that there was another word to describe me. Love it.

Echo

I mentioned in my last post that I had another echocardiogram. Once again, it was normal. I think that’ll be my last one. By the time I’d be due again, I’ll be finished with my Herceptin. Maybe they’ll do a final one after it’s all over and before my surgery in January. I’m not sure. For now, though, it’s all good!

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