24 June 2011


knee deep mud, sleeping in tents, non stop rain, no showers or facilities, only snack bars, well and alcohol bars, and about 100,000 people crammed into one space. sound like fun?

what about if I said that U2, Colplay, the Low anthem, beyonce, chemical brothers, kaiser chiefs, cold war kids, paul simon, mumford and sons, white lies, queens of the stone and about 50 other bands and performers were going to be sharing that space too?

now does it sound like fun?

It sure as heck does to me! Wednesday marked the start of the Glastonbury Music Festival. Not familiar with it? go here and check it out. The festival started on a farm in Glastonbury, England in 1970 and has been going strong ever since. It is not a festival for the mild, but for the true music fan with tickets costing hundreds of pounds and the conditions less than favourable. But the music is well worth it. new bands, established bands, bands you will probably never hear of again. it is awesome.


Obviously we are not going as it is friday afternoon and I am sitting at my computer in tulsa, oklahoma. but i sure wish I was. The forecast for the weekend is rain and more rain. followed by intense mud and some more rain. and there is no other place that i would rather be. bring on the music!

sigh. maybe 2013.

15 June 2011

on potty training (part 2)

So remember last week when I posted about potty training? I was not ready for it. E had been asking for a while, but I was ok to put it off. until last Monday. She was asking and I couldn't make up excuses anymore.

All during breakfast we talked about the potty and underwear and how she was too big for diapers. As soon as we finished eating, E and I went upstairs and I showed her the drawer in the dresser that held all her new underwear. It was on the very bottom so she could open and shut it herself.

After she picked out a lime green minnie mouse pair, we walked around the house and looked at all the toilets. One bathroom upstairs and one downstairs had little pottys in them. I explained to her all about the bathroom and how she should tell me whenever she thought she needed to go.

That was the start. Every 20 minutes after that we stopped whatever we were doing and went to sit on the potty. I took some of her favourite books with us and we read a couple each time. If she went, I made a really, REALLY big fuss and lots of high-5's were given. If nothing happened, I congratulated her for sitting on the potty and said we would try again later.

After the months and months of her showing interest in the potty the day we actually officially start she could care less. It was a struggle to get her to even want to go into the bathroom. I didn't want to push too hard for fear she would look at it as a punishment, but I also knew that without a diaper on if she didn't use the potty we would have loads of accidents.

and we did. starting about an hour after the diaper came off and continuing all day.

after dinner she seemed to warm to the idea and every 5 minutes she would yell 'potty, potty' and run to the bathroom. she would strain to pee even the tinniest bit and would dance around so proud of herself. and then want to go put her underwear in the wash and get a new pair.

uh, yeah. not quite the point.

and i got discouraged. I know it was only day 1. I know that it is a big deal and can be a process and she is not even two...but I still was discouraged. I posted a status updated on facebook of something to the effect of 'potty training, not as much fun as you might think' Of course everyone and their dog had an opinion about that comment, but I just couldn't understand how she could be so far away from understanding the concept when for months she had been asking to use the toilet. I even went on amazon and bought 4 potty books and a elmo uses the potty dvd.

I was not excited about day 2.

I had always said whenever I started, I wanted to go straight to underwear and only use diapers for nap time/bed time. No pull ups, no switching back and forth. So I was all in. When I woke her up, we went to the draw, picked out some underwear and went straight to the potty. and she peed.

after breakfast she said 'potty, potty' and ran to the bathroom. and peed. and the rest of the day she went on her own and went when I asked. no accidents at all.

Day 3. the same. she asked and went and no accidents.

So on day 4 I decided to go to the pool. I know they say to stay home when potty training, but I am a rule breaker- a maverick if you will. so off the pool we went. We brought our little potty with us and she got out of the pool twice- all on her own- went to the potty and peed. twice. all by herself without me prompting. again, no accidents.

So it went the rest of the week. I stopped asking her and just let her tell me. If it had been a while, I would mention it but if she said no I wouldn't take her. If she said yes, we went and she went. We went to the park, the mall, out to eat and to see friends. She went on big toilets, public toilets and her little potty (which we took with us in the back of the car) She asked to go when she needed to.

And get this- poop and pee. I know, more detail than you wanted, but hey that is pretty amazing. We even went to church on sunday, left her in the church nursery and she asked the teacher in there to use the potty. Twice she went during church, with a stranger, in a strange place, with no accidents!!

So here we are on Wednesday. 9 days after we started potty training and we have been 8 days accident free. She is even dry at nap time. Only in diapers for night. I can't believe I was so uptight on day 1. I would have never imagined that potty training would be this easy. I am blessed, really. Ele is pretty great and I am pretty excited to be done with diapers. Ok, I know we still have night time diapers and I am not about to take those away any time soon, but I am pleased with the day time potty progress. She uses the potty whenever she needs to go! (again too much information I know, but poopy diapers were way easier to clean up than poopy potty!)

and nothing is more adorable than a little girl running around in tiny, tiny minnie mouse underwear. my little one is a big kid now.

My only problem now is messing with amazon returns of 4 potty books and an elmo dvd!

13 June 2011

i really like ebay

I am a BIG fan of ebay. I sell almost everything we dont want/need/use on ebay. I dont make enough to count as an income per say, but it is nice to have a little extra on the side. It is amazing what people will buy, but that is another story, for another time.

I also love ebay for the bargains. 9 times out of 10 before I buy something I check to see if I can get it on ebay (or amazon) I am not sure if everyone is aware of this, but ebay also has stores where they sell brand new things. I realize not everyone is a fan of used, however gently used it may be, but brand new at discounted price is awesome.

For example, E's crib bedding is this awesome set from Pottery Barn. I love Pottery Barn. thats right, love. Love like my life would be a little less complete without Pottery Barn. Serious love. But it is also a seriously expensive love. I have to save and save and save- or receive it as a gift- to get pottery barn. Her crib set was a gift. (thanks mom and gram gram)

As it is now time for big girl bedding, I wanted the same set but in Big Kid size. They have it. Oh, the thrill of knowing I could keep this bedding for the next however many years...ecstatic to put it mildly. Pillows, owl toys, sheets, comforter, more pillows and so on. The total came to well over $400 without tax or shipping. ouch. not in my budget.

So to ebay I went. I found the entire set, the entire set folks, owl toys, pillows and all for less than half. less. than. half. That included shipping as well. All brand new, all in packages, all straight from Pottery Barn to my little girl's bed. Half price. I love Pottery Barn, but I love ebay probably just as much. It was an incredible deal that allowed me to get exactly what I wanted within my budget. awesome.

If you do not use ebay, you should. Ebay is not paying me for this advertisement, but they should really. I can't say enough about the awesome-ness that is ebay for everything. Sometimes you have to spend some time looking through a lot of crap to get what you want, but it is worth the time.

Oh, and here is a picture of her awesome bedding. I will post another set of pictures when it is actually on her bed, in her room...this is just from the PB website.

10 June 2011

6 years exactly.

Exactly six years ago today I met Rhys. I discussed all the details in THIS post, but I couldn't let the 10th of June pass without some special recognition.

If someone had told me in 2005 that in 6 years I would be married to a random British dude that I met in New Zealand and have a 2 year little girl...I probably wouldn't have believed them. But here we are, six glorious years later.

In the grand scheme of life six years is not long. Heck, some of my closest friends have been married for six years, not just known each other. But for us it is wonderful. Our whirlwind of a romance that spanned 3 continents, 5 countries and only 79 days of time spent together is magic to me.

and it all comes down to 10 June 2005.

Happy 6 years kiddo. I wouldn't trade a second of it for anything!!

9 June 2011

7 weeks in pictures

As discussed yesterday, we have been in the US for 7 weeks. I finally figured out how to upload pictures to my parents computer, so here it is- what the last 7 weeks has looked like for Team Williams.

Our boxes arrived 4 days after we did! This truck showed up in our driveway...

and unloaded all of these boxes to the garage. Everything we own sits in those boxes. We were quite pleased to see them. On a less positive note though, there is one box that rattles when you lift it. The rattle of hundreds of pieces of broken glass. We have no idea what is in there, but whatever it is- it is broken. One day when we open everything up, we shall see...

We did however open up the box that contained little e's London train set. She loves cars/trains and this all wooden set is just the reminder of 'home' we needed.

My parents took us to the Bixby Bar-B-Q festival. Whilst e wasn't a massive fan of the food, she did love the bouncy castle.

Remember yesterday my complaint about walking in Tulsa? Yeah. This is the day we tried to walk to the closest park. No sidewalks, cars a few feet away, boiling hot...not the most awesome idea.

I turned 29.

E has been hanging out with her Great Gram-Gram.

But if I am honest what takes up the majority of our time is the pool. We spend hours at the pool, or pool parties, or just playing around with the hose.Pretty much anything that involves water. The weather is so nice I can't really stand to be inside so water time it is!

We also took our first big trip in the US. It was a family excursion with Mimi and Papa (my parents) to Six Flags. It was pretty awesome. Little e loved all the rides and Rhys tried his very first taste of funnel cake. Success.

Unfortunately we have also had to spend some time in our designated tornado shelter. Welcome to Oklahoma Rhys....we have lots of tornados!

There you have it. A picture heavy post, but a visual guide to our 7 weeks stateside.

8 June 2011

7 weeks

We have been in America almost 7 weeks. Can I say that we are still adjusting?

Well, we are. But in much better ways today than we were 5 weeks ago. Or even 3 weeks ago. Team Williams is getting into the swing of life- American Style. And it is good.

For example....

-the weather is awesome. And we have a pool (parents have a pool). so we are swimming every. single. day. and I LOVE it. E loves it too, which is what really matters.

-Chick-fil-a is amazing and i have no idea how i survived 4 whole years without it. I can never be apart from it again. ever.

-It is really nice (and convenient) to have wal-mart and target everywhere you turn. So many options, so many choices and at such an affordable price. I know there are people out there who will fight me on every turn about the evil-ness that is wal-mart but people, I am loving it.

-did i mention the pool?

-And it goes without saying that the best thing about America is being with my family. I have missed out on so much. And I have just missed them. There are downfalls to living with parents, but it is wonderful to be able to see them every day and for ele to have her mimi and papa around.

But it is also hard. Still hard. And still harder than I thought. For example....

-It is really hard when people questions why it is hard for me. I get the 'but you are american so it is really that difficult?' and the 'was it really so different over there?' Yes. Yes it was different and yes it is difficult. The only place I was ever a wife and mother until 2 months ago was the UK. Things are different over there. Products, produce, perspective- life in general is different. and sometimes it is still a difficult transition. I loved (and still love) so many things about European culture that it is difficult to let some of them go. Which brings me nicely to point 2.

-The need for a car. I loved walking. I mean really loved it. Like would happily live the rest of my life with public transportation and my own two feet kind of love. Walking and taking a bus? Not so much an option in good ole' Oklahoma. and I hate that. I miss the sidewalks. and the tubes. I miss fighting with hundreds of angry tube riders to push my stroller up and down the escalators to get on the tube amid the rush of commuters. Can I really miss that?! Well, I do.

-I miss Camden Town. The cheap food stalls selling Chinese food on the side of the road. The crazy hippies selling, well, crap out of falling down market stalls. I miss the tattoos parlors that lined the street and the unimaginable amount of goths and drunks wandering up and down the road. I miss camden!

-I want to be able to walk out my front door and get on a train that in 10 short minutes will put me in Trafalgar Square. I want to play with E in the fountains outside the national museum and then have a picnic on the grounds right by Westminster Abbey. Or maybe a snack on the banks of the Thames while a shadow is cast over us by Big Ben. I want to be able to take ele to the Imperial War Museum. Sure she has been several times before, but come on, can you really go too many times? I think not!

-I miss Red Sky crisps and chip shops and squash the drink and hearing 2 rings when I called someone of the phone. I miss the variety of accents, I miss the BBC ad Radio 1. I miss the crazy music with people singing in British accents. I miss the pub culture and surprisingly I even missed the big end of the football season relegation battle. I still miss a lot of the UK.

-Just as with America, it goes without saying that the things I miss the most are the people. I miss the Wales Williams. And kath and neil and nia. I miss my baby girls and the Fullers boys and girls. I miss London Stacey.

It is funny writing that out because I had a post very similar to this but in reverse when I first moved to the UK. All the things I missed about America. Believe me, that list was massive. Funny how it switches.

I love America. I love being from America. I say it jokingly all the time, but it's true- we are the best :) But I am missing the UK a lot this week. Reflecting on my transition to the UK, it is a good sign to be writing this out because in kristina world it means that I am adjusting, moving on and letting go. There will be even more awesome things about living here than I can think of at the moment. I know it will be great. Team Williams will make Tulsa our new home (for the moment at least) and we will thrive.

But today, nearly 7 weeks into America, I am missing the UK. So there it is. How we have settled into the transition. Easier now than 7 weeks ago, but still a bit of a struggle. Thank goodness for Chick-fil-a, but man I miss Europe!

6 June 2011

on potty training.

eleri is basically potty training herself. I am not sure why, but it almost like I am holding off on starting the actual training. For months she has asked about the potty, gone to sit on the toilet and told us whenever she is wet or poopy. She doesnt like being either. and she doesn't like wearing diapers.

But the training just seemed like a process. Back in Wales when she was asking to go to the potty, we let her but didn't push it. she asked all the time. my reasoning for not starting then was we had a big move and flight coming up. with rhys immigrating i couldn't even begin to estimate how long it would take us to get through customs. i did not want to even image a newly potty trained 19 month old waiting in customs lines. or on a 10 hour flight. how many changes of clothes/underwear would i have needed?! so we waited.

Then we first got to america it was the excuse of 'we just moved' or 'she is adjusting' and 'we dont want to have too many changes all at the same time' So even though she was fighting to not wear her diapers. and asking (and actually going) on the potty, we still waited.

Until today.

She is regularly pooping and peeing on the potty. just what you wanted to know right? all about my child's bodily functions. The only thing holding her back is her diaper that she cant always get off quick enough. So today we switched from diaper to big girl underwear. she is so excited.

that excitement means we have spent the majority of our day in the bathroom, as E pulls her underwear up and down and sits on the potty. but it was time.

she is ready, whether mom is or not. Potty training her we come!

2 June 2011

the news

In literal news, there was a major siege at a bank today just 2 blocks down from my flat in london. a man had an 'explosive device' and was threatening people at the bank. after a 3 hour stand off with police the man surrendered and all was ok. what?! specialist firearms police were called in. shops evacuated, houses evacuated. streets closed off. If we were still living there, we could not have gone home. the road to our flat was closed off! crazy! (full story on BBC.co.uk)

In not actual news, just 'The Life of Kristina' news here is what is going on:

- Eleri is awesome. Here she is waving from the sun roof of my parents car. You know, cause thats a fun thing to do. and she is pretty rad.

-We bought the little one big girl furniture. thats right, big e has a big bed now. Granted it still dosen't have a mattress, but we are getting there. the furniture is amazing!! and once i get it all set up (with her amazing bedding) i will post a picture.

- we have pretty much gone to the pool nearly everyday for the past week. it is incredible. I love having a pool (parents place, not ours) and some days I think eleri is going to explode with excitement. she walks around with her bathing suit saying "me b-suit. me b-suit. me in pool. me in pool" if we dont make it to the pool fast enough, oh boy! But she loves it. Look at how adorable!

-living in Tulsa requires 2 cars. I was hoping that we could avoid buying a car. My parents have an extra car that they have so generously donated to Team Williams. In my attempt to bring a european lifestyle to tulsa, I decided we would try to walk places when Rhys took the car to work. Uh, yeah. Not so much happening in south tulsa. We walked for just over an hour, on the side of the road, no stroller, in 90 degree heat to get to the closest park. E wasn't happy and believe me, by the time we got to the park, neither was I. Tulsa is not a walking place. We need two cars to get around.

Our plan is a cheap, tiny car with good gas mileage. Rhys will take that one to work and I will get the more reliable one with e. But...cars are expensive. and we may or may not have spent all of our money buying eleri bedroom furniture. (but her room looks awesome!)

if you know of someone selling and/or giving away a car, let us know!

-There is a chance my little one is colour blind. Rhys has red-green colour defenceny which is a fancy way of saying 'colour blind'. It is hereditary, so there is a good chance little e could be. She is still a bit young to be tested officially, but it has been medically suggested.

Why am I putting this on my blog? Because E is still awesome. Technically it is classed as a disability. There are support groups and everything. Special classes etc... And that is not the way for us. E is awesome. She is brilliant. She is advanced beyond her age without a doubt (some of that plays into the colour blind theory) In no way is she disabled. and I WILL NOT let anyone put that label on her. She is capable in every way. So I open this up for discussion. Do any of you out there have a child that is colour blind? or dyslexic or anything? what is that like for you?

(reading back through this I have noticed that I am still spelling the British way....colour, color...same thing, eh?)

-We have found a church that we really like. Rhys and I loved our church in London. Soul Survivor is an incredible place and we really enjoyed. Our church in Brecon was awesome. Small, down-home but lovely. and full of lovely people. We have started going to Redeemer Covenant here in Tulsa and it is great. We have already met some neat people and are starting to get involved. Such a blessing to find a place so quickly. We are so pleased.

-Because we live in Tulsa, I get to hang out with my dear friend Bethanie all the time. She is great, she has a daughter one month younger than eleri and we have balls of fun together. So wonderful. below are little e and noa together at the park.

-I have gotten some comments and emails from people I did not know read the blog. I love to read other people's blogs- getting ideas and just hearing how others do thigngs is fun. So if you read this blog and are not a follower, become one. :) that way I know where you blog and can read yours too! I like the comments/questions/readers. so Thanks!! :)

So that is us right now. We have some project going on and things we are doing, but more on that later. Enjoy the weekend everyone....we are headed to the pool!