Thursday, May 28, 2015

It's nearly time!

We are flying off for our US adventure tomorrow. So so exciting but also a bit sad having to say goodbye to colleagues and friends. Yes yes I know it's only 3 months and we'll be back, but with everything else going on on the job front I am not sure we'll be in Dublin much longer...I got yesterday an official email that I have been invited for interview on the 25th and 26th of June. I have to fly back to the UK (via Dublin, much cheaper and and I can just spend a couple of nights at home) in less than a month time! I have to prepare yet another presentation, let's hope for the best.

So we are leaving at lunch time, we have 3 small suitcases and a big one, we'll buy what we need in California if we are missing something, can't be bothered packing the whole house. Wish us well for the trip and I'll do my best to updated soon!

Thursday, May 21, 2015


Time is slipping through my fingers it seems. All of a sudden is the end of another week and we are one week away from leaving for Davis!

I went back to the UK on monday and the visit was excellent once again. Shortlisting will take place tomorrow, it appears I will be shortlisted and they'll fly me back from California sometime over the summer for the interview. Phew, that's intense but so so flattering they think I am a good candidate for the post! Mike when I told him about me going back for a second visit had a serious melt down. I never see them coming and every time it wrecks my mind and shakes me to the core. His negativity was global, could not see us living in the UK, did it not matter to me that the children were born in Ireland, he could not imagine them growing up in the UK, English people are very different form the Irish etc. Serious serious shit came up. Thankfully these are rare events, in 12 years together I think this is the third time, but I know I can't take many more of them and told him as much. The following day I had a headache from hell, couldn't eat etc. Only in the evening he had already changed his mind as he saw that there are a ton of opportunities for him too, he in fact knows someone there already etc. It's unreal. He is completely incapable of dealing with changes, in fact he doesn't want to talk about possibilities until they are more probabilities and so all my efforts of initiating a discussion on possibly moving for the last few weeks were ditched pretty quickly by him with "well, there's really nothing to talk about yet, is there?". I do feel we are very disconnected at the moment, I have my own things, my own thoughts and he is somewhere in the background. I actually prefer to discuss this possibility with colleagues who are super supportive than with my husband. There's something wrong here, isn't it? Let's hope the summer will help us regroup.

Oliver is back to his normal sweet self and is a pleasure to have around, however this weekend, starting tomorrow evening I'm on my own with the children as Mike is running a race in the west of Ireland with his friends. So give me some strength and calm, I'll need it!!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

The more I waited...

...the more difficult it was to start blogging again.

So if you are still out there occasionally checking on me, I will give you a brief bullet point update of the last while.

  • Work: I had been invited to the UK to give a talk at a particular university. Following the talk, I have been strongly invited to submit an application for a top ranked position at said university. I did. I got an email yesterday saying that as the process is slow, would I go back before i leave for the US to meet other senior management staff to look for possible interactions etc? This is a major opportunity but I am torn as to whether we should really consider moving or not. Some decisions will have to be made soon.
  • Davis: three weeks to go! Both Mike and I will engineer some travelling (work related) while in the US, it's a unique opportunity to strengthen our cv. So Mike will fly across to Wisconsin, while I will go to North Carolina and Boston for a few days. It's practically the same distance as it would be flying from Europe, but somehow it seems less of a problem when you are already there!
  • Family: Oliver spent two weeks in Italy with my parents, I had been invited to give a talk in Trieste, so I flew home with him on a saturday night and flew back on my own on the tuesday. He had a great time and my parents brought him back yesterday. There is a bit of "deprogramming" to do as always, but it's not that bad at all thankfully. Martina meanwhile enjoyed some only child time with mamma and daddy and we had the amazing experience of only having to settle one for the night! What a bliss!!
I hope you are all doing well, I'll try and get back to blogging again. Hugs to all.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Davis Project

As it often happens, everything is coming together really nicely!

We have a house in Davis, a sublet from a lovely couple that gave a really good deal we think and this is all due to Mike's cousin who went to see the place and talked to the owner. She sort of made a case for us as visiting scientists, and the owner decided to reduce the asking price also based on the fact that her husband is three quarters Irish and one quarter Italian (the American way!) so he thought we would have been the perfect tenants! We are delighted, the house has a lovely, secure, and shaded garden, it is close to the University and shops and has space if my sister and parents are coming to visit.

Next we sorted out also childcare. After thinking a good bit and thank to my dear friend Rain we decided to look into small day cares and we found this amazing one called Magikal Child, only 12 children, running since 1999 and of Waldorf inspiration. I skyped with the owner twice, she is so lovely, a yoga teacher and the place looks really nice. She showed me the rooms, the lovely children, and it felt just right. It is only 10-15 min cycling from the house so we hope we can leave the car at home most of the time. Again she gave us a very good deal, it is unusual to have children staying only a few months and summer is quiet for them so again we felt really loved by everyone.

And yesterday we celebrated our 8th anniversary! Onwards and upwards!

Monday, March 9, 2015

#MicroblogsMonday: Bad news, Good News, Good News

No Fulbright for me. Gutted to say the least, not sure what I could have done differently as the interview went very well, so hopefully I will get a better idea when I get feedback in April. Maybe there was just a better candidate!

Meanwhile I had also been shortlisted for internal funding through my University to sponsor the trip the the US, I went for interview and I heard just last friday that they funded me! They did cut the budget (expected) but it's still better than nothing.

Both Mike and I will retain our salary for the duration of our stay (we have booked the flights, 29th of May-24th of August) which is great news and we have probably also found a house to rent in Davis too!

Monday, February 2, 2015

How it went

I think it went well!! Of course I started nursing a cold from hell on Wednesday evening, headaches, stuffed nose and even dizziness, the works. By Thursday night I could barely breathe and work had been hellish. On Friday morning I woke up with a headache, I had a 9am lecture just before the interview and just felt like crawling back into bed.
But a couple of aspirins and three coffees by the time it was 11 and I was much better!
I left the interview very pleased with myself and sure of course I'm second guessing some of the answers I gave there and then, but that's part of the game isn't it?
I will know in March. Fingers crossed!!

Monday, January 26, 2015

#MicroblogsMonday: Oliver's sleep, dry nights and Fulbright

Oliver's sleep has much improved. We went to visit FIL this weekend and Oliver seemed very very happy to share the room with Martina. In fact he insisted to sleep in the same room as her. Didn't wake up till 7.45 am and it was the best weekend away we ever had from that point of view. When we came home on sunday night we moved Martina's bed into his room and again there was not a problem. Maybe we found a very simple solution? Maybe he was just lonely? Time will tell! With proper sleep and proper routine he is back to be a lovely child 99.5% of the time and we are all much more relaxed.

Another thing I didn't update the blog about was the fact that while Oliver has been dry at night almost always, we would have had accidents happening every so often and so we kept him in a nappy just in case. When we came back from Italy he said: "Mamma I don't want to have a nappy anymore, I'm 4 now and I can wear underpants at night. I will not have an accident" and he never did. My big boy!

Finally, 4 days till the Fulbright interview. A bit nervous, mostly about the fact that this week is so so full in work I won't have time to pee and I'm afraid by the time friday comes it'll be a miracle if I can put two sentences together....