How I Met My Husband…

John and I

 

Did I ever tell you about how John and I met?  It happened late one Saturday night, in January 2003 at a bar in Hong Kong. We met. We laughed. And, yes, we made-out like crazy teenagers. When the sun came up, our rendezvous ended, and we went our separate ways with a plan to meet the following weekend. Same place. Same time.  And so we did. And the story of “us” officially began.

Now, did I ever tell you about the events leading up to our meeting?  The ones that make me question whether or not destiny, herself, may have played a small hand in our union?

Well, I wrote a short story about it and it can be found in this fab new book!  Once Upon an Expat shares an ecclectic collection of funny and heart-tugging stories told by women writers from around the globe.  And I am so excited to have my story, A Man From Another Land, within its pages.

 

It’s available on Amazon and all author royalties will be donated to Books Abroad, helping promote literacy and education in developing countries.

 

Once Upon Promo

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From Pigs to Pinot

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A then and now reflection of what it means to be wild and free.

We’ve decided to do a wine tour in Niagara-on-the-Lake and I’m about to get on a bike, for the first time in years.

Memories of being on a bicycle in China come to mind.

Our friends have their hearts set on cycling from winery to winery so with a hint of reluctance, we’ve agreed to it.

Like a child first learning to ride, I wobble and sway and then with an unstoppable smile and a genuine concern for my own safety… I’m off!

Off like the wind, not off in a ditch.

The sun is shining and I’m feeling wild and free because …

To read the rest, head over to BLUNTmoms

A New Year’s Toast to Family, Friendship and Change

 

2013 was a big year for our family.  We packed up our life and moved to Canada from the UK!  Through the tears and the newly acquired greys, we’ve managed to survive the journey thus far and are settling into our new home as the winter snow welcomes us in abundance.

Moving our family was, by far, the most nerve-wracking decision that we’ve made but… change is good.  

To ring in the New Year, I have written a little rhyming reflection on the year gone by….

2013– a paradoxical run
A year of great changes, wonder and fun
But also of sorrow and bidding farewell
To our family and friends whose lives we knew well

From England to Canada our family did go
A most difficult choice we’d contemplated so
And after John’s 40th– a 1970’s do
We shared our last laughs and bid all adieu

From taxi to airplane our tired eyes cried
Just like those typical Manchester skies
And with a glass of white wine and a deep cleansing breath
A new chapter began – we’d soon write the rest

I’d hoped that the sun might welcome us home
But we landed in clouds, with a thud and a groan
Mom, Jim and Dad-out stretched arms they all stood
Had come to collect us and all of our goods

We set off on our journey, back to my hometown
To connect and to chat about what would go down
Gram was no longer there, she’d passed away
And her memory lingered, surely to stay

The times they were changing so many things new
A new home, a new town to navigate through
The keys to our house were soon in our hands
And so was our future and all of our plans

On Ava’s  birthday we moved to our new place
Trepidation and worry all over her face
Would there be children – new friends to meet?
Would it be fun to live on our new street?

The sun, it soon came and the summer did too
John set up his office amidst the wild, crazy zoo
With all the kids home for two months until school
He worked- we unpacked and played in the pool

I felt such a calm, peaceful sense of relief
Like the hard part was over, we’d turned a new leaf
My old friends were here and the laughs carried on
It certainly felt like no time had gone

And so it began- months of settling in
BBQs, discoveries and cocktails (chin, chin)
Our water baby, Zed, swam like a dolphin
And we learned why Bell Canada gets sworn about so often

The school year started without much-to-do
The girls have made friends, even little Minoo
We’ve survived the transition up until now
But the snow has arrived and we don’t have a plow…

And here with my laptop, the fire and our laundry
I know that home is the place that’s upon me
It’s the place where I’m from, the land that I love
It’s the country my kids now sing proudly of

But our hearts are in England and always will be
Of course, that’s where we became a family
It’s my husband’s home and was all of ours too
So lucky we were for the people we knew

But the thing about “knew” is this word exists not
For the word is to “know” and to not be distraught
We’ve got visits and travel plans all underway
We’ll see everyone again, when we visit next May

2014 is for business, friendship and more
It’s for learning and growing and to explore
And of course it’s for family and laughter and life
John knew we’d be uprooted with me as his wife

The journey we’re on is our own- it’s our path
We get one chance to live it, to make happiness last
In 2013 we both sprouted some greys
And new wrinkles have joined us, in these recent days

But change is a good thing, though stressful and scary
We’ll ring in this New Year feeling both blessed and merry
May 2014 refresh and renew you
And may health, love and happiness be yours all year through

Happy New Year!

Love from,
Shannon and Co.

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