i’m ok… even though i got an email.

you know what? i don’t want a job that might not be a place where i can be 100% me. i don’t want a job where i have to perhaps pretend that part of my life doesn’t exist. i don’t want a job where i am not seen as a whole and complete and perfectly ok person just as i am. i will not settle. i will not bow down. i will not give in.

instead, i will keep on being me. tattoos and all. same-sex marriage and all. liberal thinking and all. idealism and all. theology and all. and if this blog, or anything else in my life, is getting in the way of me getting a job… well, then, that job’s not for me.

as you can tell, i did not get the teaching job i interviewed for on monday. they told me that they would call the person they offered the job to and email the others on friday. well, i got an email. and, you know what? i’m totally ok with it. panicky about getting a job period. but, i know in my soul, and i knew it before the interview, that teaching in a public school was not for me. it’s just not me anymore. oh, i’m still a teacher. but, in a different way. you can’t move to another country for three years and come back in exactly the same place, ready to pick up where you left off. it doesn’t work like that. at least not with me.

a birthday card from my parents. circa mid-90s.

a birthday card from my parents. circa mid-90s. i found it yesterday. the perfect pick-me-up.

now, this job that i interviewed for, they did not turn me down based on anything except that there was a more qualified person, as far as i know. that’s all the email said. but, during my interview, they asked me this question:

“do you have Facebook?” and then, “what would i find if i was to type in your name on Facebook and see your page?”. during the interview i panicked. inside. on the outside i was as cool as a cucumber. i knew i was interviewing at an elementary school in small-town, southern usa. would they see my same-sex marriage? would they see links to my blog? would they see social issues that i support, like healthcare and welfare and voting rights and the right to choose? would there be something incriminating (to them) on there? i had no idea. they explained the question by saying that the school was in a small town where parents would google me or look me up & check me out, so hopefully i didn’t have any shots of me in a string bikini. which i didn’t. are bikini shots what they were really worried about? perhaps. but, i don’t know.

still, it’s a small town. so half of my life is incriminating and wrong, if you look at it through conservative christian, southern, rural, north carolina eyes. sigh.

so, did this play a factor in me not getting the job? i have no idea. perhaps not. but, you know, it actually doesn’t really matter to me. i learned something about myself because of this whole process.

i cannot live a divided life ever again. i simply must be able to be who i am, as i am, wherever i am. and, i mean, i’ll expect and offer the exact same thing to you. bottom line: i don’t think i’m a horrible person. i am not out to hurt anybody. and i am not a mistake, wrong, a threat, or anything else. i am simply me. and, to be honest with you, all i want is to live and work and play and be… in a world filled with harmony, peace, and equality. and i want the same thing for you. is that so wrong?

for the most part things felt really good after the interview on monday. there was a really good, loving vibe in the school. and i am certain that, personally, the two people who interviewed me would have seen me as an ok, educated, caring person.

but, that’s just how all the individuals felt in the united methodist church felt when my candidacy was rejected three years ago because i was married to a woman. all of the individual people didn’t have a problem with me. they were just following the rules. and perhaps the two at the school didn’t have a problem with me either, but were “concerned” about how parents and the community would react to me (still i have no idea if this was a factor, i remind you).

the problem is, it’s all well & good that people individually support me. but, how long are we going to just follow the rules? how many more people are we gonna sacrifice because we don’t want to rock the boat, upset the status quo, or break any rules? how long will these two institutions that i have loved continue to excommunicate me because of who i love? and, how long will people just sit back and support me, yet follow the rules anyway? nothing will ever change if we just accept & follow the rules. if we disagree, then let’s disagree and do something!

anyway, i did not like the feeling i had after my interview when i wondered if i should change anything on my facebook. there is actually nothing to change, there is nothing wrong with it, with me… but, i left the interview wondering if there actually was something a little wrong with me, that i had to change in order to fit into a mold. that feeling was uncomfortable, and i was mad that i even let those thoughts enter my mind… that i had to possibly change something about myself to make myself more acceptable. ewww. ridiculous thoughts.

a47a6872067511e3990322000a9f192c_7as for a job? i’ll keep looking. and i’ll turn over every, single stone to find something that suits my soul, that makes me feel free, that nurtures and challenges me to give back. i will not settle for anything less than my dreams.

i’ve learned that never again will i question myself, and my self worth. what i will do is keep looking for a job. something that is a perfect fit. and i will trust that it will come in just the right time. and, while i look, i will do a few other things as well this fall:

  • take a yoga class & sign up for training to be a yoga teacher.
  • take a writing class & get moving on my book… SERIOUSLY.
  • begin a photography course.
  • go camping and get back to my tree-hugging roots.
  • grow my pen pal relationships.
  • print and frame some of my photography.
  • volunteer with an eating disorder organization or an LGBT organization, or both.

my love, my brother, and my parents all said it at different times today… this was not meant to be. and there is something much better out there waiting for me. so, i’m gonna trust my family and the universe. i’m gonna listen to my soul better next time, and not panic. and i will not settle. it’s out there. and when i stumble upon it, i will know. and it will be beautiful. but, for now, i keep on walking. with my head held high. focused on who i am, the gifts i have, and alert to the signs and messages that are coming to me every day.

so, today, instead of being upset and terrified, i chose to move forward. i chose to listen to what my heart is really saying.


there she goes! my love on her way!

i just dropped my love off at UNCA for her first day at the university! and i am so proud of her! she made her dream come true, fought her way back from near death (literally), overcame so much, pushed and created and dreamed her dream into reality. and now, today, she has begun her second bachelor’s degree, and i could not be any more excited for her.

as for me, i feel more and more that this is a time to dig deep into my dreams as well. even though, i have already made the dream of living in europe come true, it’s time for the next step. my love and i have helped each other realize our dreams, and now we move forward into the next part of our journey in life. and i could not be happier.


so, after dropping lina off at school, i headed downtown, where i am now. i’ve found a little corner for myself at a table. got a chai latte (a big one!) in my hand, and my notebook and computer ready to fire up. this is how i work best. in this moment, right now, i am going to keep dreaming and make things happen, while i balance trusting the universe at the same time. it will all come.

my friends, believe in yourself today. chase your dreams and trust your soul. and you will find your bliss.

happy weekend! love and peace to you.

update/disclaimer: in no way am i saying that the job where i interviewed discriminated against me. i am not even accusing them of it. i am only saying that it is a possibility, given where it is located (a rural, small, conservaative town – not in the same city or county where i live), i have no proof of that. in some ways i don’t even care. what i am saying is that it was instrumental in helping me think about what type of job i want and what job i am meant to have. more importantly, it solidified my thoughts about how i am. once again. so, all in all, it was a huge blessing in disguise. the whole experience. 

thank you for reading! much love. ~liz

i can feel it in the air.

it’s unusually warm today. like 20/21 celsius or 72ish fahrenheit. and really weird out. sunny, stormy, damp, rainy, humid. like something’s coming. like a change is gonna come. but, i guess changes actually are coming, aren’t they?

it feels like today is the last day of warm weather. i can feel it in my bones. today’s warmth is the last hurrah, the last day to walk without a jacket. after this, fall is settling in. for good. here in sweden, we’ve been seeing & feeling the beginnings of the changes. the wind has turned chilly, and the nights have been down right cold sometimes. the skies have been deep blue, and the tips of the leaves are beginning their colorful changes. not much, but just a tiny bit – like they’ve been dipped into paint. and, of course, the days of light are fading into darkness.

and i am so ready for this change. i absolutely love this season. true, the days are noticeably shorter. gone is the season where there is never a need to turn on a light at home. gone are the sunsets at midnight. now, the lights come on about 6:30 or 7 pm. now, the afternoon sun casts its long shadows before dinnertime. still, i am ready.

ready to buy candles. ready to pull out my blankets & curl up every night under them. ready to make hot chocolate. ready to hunt for pumpkins. ready for gloves, scarves, & boots. and ready to begin to gather my thoughts and prepare for the long season of swedish hibernation. cozy, cozy nights of peace & quiet. a time where life speeds back up in some ways (back to work & all that), and yet slows down at the same time. at least for me. i may be busy, but i slow my pace. i relax in the light of warm candles glowing. i smile as i stroll through the crunchy leaves, counting how many different colors & shades of red, golden, orange, & brown i see. in september, i begin my season of nesting.

and today, although it was warm outside, my love & i have left our  little apartment on the 4th floor and walked the few blocks downtown, to celebrate this changing of the seasons in one of our favorite cafes. computers in our bags, creativity on our brains, and chai latte steaming on our table… we are ushering in the season of fall for 2012.

so, go ahead… grab a blanket, make some tea & coffee, and light a candle. it’s time to get cozy.

wishing you comfy fall days ahead. peace.

my view(s) today.

well, here’s my take on the photo challenge for today: your view. i decided to snap a few little shots throughout the day to show my view at different times & different places. take a peek at what i saw…

started off the day fairly bright & early with a meeting at work. gonna have a weekend camp for some youth next weekend, and it was time for me to lead our last-minute, what-do-we-need-to-do planning meeting. it went well, by the way.

 had a little chai latte & did a little iPad blogging at one of my fav cafes.

 had a view of some yummy goodies at the cafe, too.

 did a little interior decorating magazine reading while my love slept.

 watched a downpour & a thunderstorm outside the window. cozy.

 walked in my neighborhood. finally, some sunshine again.

ended the day by meeting a friend at a pub. sipped on a free glass of wine (the bartender broke a glass right in front of us, so our drinks were on the house). jackpot.

what did you see this weekend? what was the view from where you were? you know, looking around, observing… many times just being aware brings me peace.

here’s to wishing you a good night’s sleep with sweet dreams & peaceful rest.

snapshots of stockholm.

i just gotta share a few pics from my adventure to stockholm on tuesday. yes, i made it. i survived all the swedish, the new people, the train, the metro, didn’t get lost, and made it back home before the clock struck midnight. it was a great little adventure and a chance to travel, which you know is always a plus for me. speaking of travel, my love & i were trying to sync our calendars yesterday morning and realized that for the next month, things are a little out of control. ok. a lot. but, i’ll get to travel some (feels really good – exploring new places is a plus & really crappy at the same time – i truly love traveling with lina. she makes everything fun, and i find myself wanting to share things with her when i travel alone, only to find that she is not there with me). anyway, here’s what i realized… within a 14 day period i am traveling to 4 different cities all over sweden. whoa. and lina is not going with me on one single trip. boo. but… after all the crazy travel in sweden is over, it’s time for a long, exciting weekend with my love in paris!

but, for now, here are a few snapshots of the swedish capital. stockholm, baby.

stormy skies in norrköping as i walked to the train station. but, check out that yellow bush! the only sign of spring in sight. still, there is hope.

 busy stockholm street.

i had just enough time to grab a chai latte. perfect.

 headed across the street & down to the metro/subway.

so many people. all so different. all in their own little world, yet crossing paths for a few minutes. insanity.

 made it to my destination & discovered this cute little market just before the meeting.

 5 hours later (10pm) & i was back in the not so busy train station. headed home!

well, it’s thursday. and there’s lots to do. hope you have a wonderful day & find some little adventures in whatever you do!

peace out.

the city on the west coast: gothenburg.

if you know me, or have visited my blog before, then you know that i love to travel. i crave it. i yearn for it. and i am always longing for my next trip to some place different. exploring other cultures, seeing new things (or old things from new perspectives), living life, and soaking in the moments… that’s what inspires me touches my soul.

this past weekend my love and i had a chance to get out of town & visit the city where we first met each other. it was so nice to have three days completely off from work. together. we stayed with a friend and visited/met up with other friends also throughout the weekend. gothenburg did not disappoint… the weather was gorgeous & there were plenty of moments to soak up life. and we did just that. 

the train station in gothenburg on a sunny, chilly friday morning.


first stop. starbucks! let me explain the excitment… you see in sweden there are only 2. one in the airport near stockholm (which we still have not found) and this new one in the train station in gothenburg. so, upon arriving, this was on the top of our list.

i am a happy girl with my white chocolate mocha.

 beautiful weather…

in a beautiful city.

my love soaking up some moments & some sun.

we did a little shopping. yep.

sunshine & love.

an amazing thai restaurant. book your table early, it’s popluar! the atmosphere was unbelievable and the food was super good too. it was a great friday evening shared among friends.

haga: an old suburb of gothenburg, which is now not a suburb but part of central downtown. th ebuildings are old, the cafes are cozy, the boutiques are unique. we spent our saturday afternoon wandering the streets. lovely. just lovely.

haga: i know it doesn’t look real. but this was the scene i was standing in the middle of. this couple, dressed in full costume, walked up & down the street playing their little calliope music for everyone. a traveling street show.

then, a street jazz band. they were awesome.

the lady in the upstairs apartment thought so too. how cool that she lives right there & just hung her head out the window to take in the sights & sounds on the street below.

 time for fika at cafe husaren.

blueberry pie & chai latte for me, thank you.

 after dinner saturday night, some of our friends craved mcflurry’s. so, off to mcdonald’s. we wondered if it was closed. weird – since it was only 9:15. but, then remembered we were in the middle of earth hour. mcdonald’s had turned off their lights (most of them). cool.

so, we walked up to the end of one of the main streets so see how gothenburg looked in the dark. not all the lights were out, but it was pretty dark. we could see plenty of stars. we waited there for 10 minutes, so we could see the lights come back on. it was a little like waiting for fireworks to begin. hehe.

lights back on!

 sunday morning tram ride into downtown.

 headed to church to meet up with some friends.

 and finally, the train ride home sunday afternoon.

what a fantastic, beautiful weekend it was! now, it’s monday morning. the month of april has begun, and it’s holy week/stilla vecka – the week leading up to easter. i must say, i am feeling some april stress. there’s a lot going on. a lot of big stuff. but, the challenges will be good. it was amazing to have a weekend off and share the joys of traveling with my love. and i’m already longing for the next getaway adventure. paris, anyone?

peace, love, & sunshine on your monday. wherever you are.



geez. what’s the deal with blogging? i am having precisely the same problem that a blog friend of mine is having… plenty of words, but they won’t come out. i have a list (literally a written list now) of things i would love to blog about, but it’s not happening. a list of world events, dreams, reflections, inspirations. and my life… well, compared to a lazy, luxury trip to greece, my life is busy and pretty much full of ordinary things right now. just ordinary days. i usually find so much extraordinary stuff in the ordinary stuff, but i’m finding it, i’m seeing & experiencing it, but i can’t seem to write about it write now. do you follow me? things are good. things are rolling along. things are busy. things are even amazing. but, the words aren’t coming… what’s even worse is that the pictures are not coming either. gaaahh. what to do…

i know that i just need to be patient. the right words will come at the right times. they always do. they just spill out of me and onto my keyboard, and end up here. and it’s always just what i need… all of it gushes out of me, cleansing my brain, clearing out my soul, leaving me feeling light and free and as bright as the sunshine. this is why i write. i write because i can do nothing else. i write to be free. and when i write, i go from a dark jumbled mess inside to something that looks like me twirling in a field of wildflowers or riding on my dad’s boat with the sun shining and the wind whipping through my hair and on my face. i write so that i can breathe.

and right now, i feel a little bit restless, like it’s hard to breathe. thoughts jumbled up everywhere. fidgety. am i making any sense?

i just need to write.

but, instead of writing (yes. i know that i have written here.), i am going to show you some pictures. from my cozy sunday… here ya go. and beware! the words are coming soon. mouahahaha!!!

this is the church where i work. every sunday morning i have a fantastic walk in the morning through the city. there are not many people out on sunday morning, so it’s a peaceful, quiet walk. and every morning that i take this solitary walk, i am reminded of the amazing fact that i live here. i am filled with joy & i find myself walking with a smile on my face; thinking things like… who would have ever thought? i can’t believe i actually live here. i’m going to my job i have a job in another country after only living here for one year. crazy!), where i speak another language, in a church. oh how long i waited for this. but, it’s so worth it to follow your dreams. oh my gosh, it is a beautiful morning! just look at the sunshine coming through the trees! and these old buildings, all different colors. amazing. i never could have imagined how unbelievably happy i am!

and here i am. work is done. i’m bundled up (yes. it’s cold here now) & am i off to meet lina for some time at our favorite cafe in town….

lina, my love. just enjoying and being.

on the way home we stopped to buy magazines. a rare thing for us to do, since they are so expensive here. but, we picked up some things to inspire us… interior design, homes, philosophy, and a celebrity weekly (no magazine collection is complete without one!). the rest of the day has been spend with said magazines between us on the sofa as we peek through the pages and take turns sharing what we see that we love.

seriously. could any other sunday afternoon be any better?

peace and inspiration. ♥

a sunday in october.

feels like a typical fall, october day today. after taking care of business this morning – me working at church & lina home cleaning & organizing, we settled down for our first afternoon together since our trip. the weather has been cold and gray outside; but, inside, our apartment has been warm & cozy. candles lit. snuggling under blankets. a little cat snoozing all day. a couple of good movies. and the first homemade chai latte of the season. perfect.

my little church office (with cool desk accessories, thanks to my love).

brrr… it’s cold outside.

cloudy skies. could it snow? no. not yet.

snuggly, sleepy cat.

yummy chai latte.

enjoy your day. wherever you are. peace, my dear readers.