Dec 27, 2007

Christmas day.

We had a great Christmas day in St. Louis, with Sara's parents and Ninny. After a relaxing morning spent round the tree, opening presents and eating oh-so-sweet 'Christmas goodies', and an afternoon watching new M*A*S*H episodes, our friends the Bedenbaughs came round to join us for Christmas dinner. It was a really good day, and we all enjoyed ourselves.

Here is a selection of the presents Sara and I received:

(James: note the three volumes of Reformed Dogmatics! Awesome.)


Dec 26, 2007


From this...
to this...

On Saturday afternoon, I attempted to make bread. However, that failed. So, on Sunday I tried again, and managed to make a pretty good white loaf. I was a little salty, but not bad for a first attempt.

And then on Christmas eve, I tried out (with the help of the mother-in-law) our meat-grinder and sausage stuffer, which we got as wedding presents.

Now I just need to raise my own wheat and pigs, and we will be well on our way to being self-sufficient!


Dec 17, 2007

Snowed in with you....

Pictures from a perfect weekend......
This is what we woke up to on Satuday morning

Snow falling.....

Perfect time to curl up and finish the pile of thank you notes

We warmed ourselves with blueberry pancakes.....

And attempted to make our way to my parents house for an afternoon of baking and warmth from the fireside....

This was the veiw Sunday morning from our front window

Gulf Drive from our Dining Room Window....

The Fire Escape

Alex's footprints in the snow

We got almost 7 inches of snow!

So we stayed inside and ate a yummy meal of pot roast, potatoes, and some sad lima beans.

Snowed In With You
When you come homeAnd all the world's asleep
I'll close my eyesAnd breathe with sweet relief
This world has had you
Long enough for now
And when I get you homeI'll show you
I wanna get snowed in with you
I wanna shake off these winter blues
These ain't no blues that I can use
And when the lights are gleaming
I'll be leaning into you
What's a girl to do?
I wanna get snowed in with you
I'm gonna make every effort to
Be so good to you
That when the snow melts away
You'll want to stay
Snowed in with me
Till it's time to take down the tree
And it's all I really need baby
To be alone awhile with you
What's a girl to do?
Drift with me While we're still awake
Every new snowflake Is like a wish we make
Dream with me Leave your cares far behind
Is all love snowblind?
Let me awake in time to find
That I'm snowed in with you
I'm gonna make every effort to
Be so good to you
That when the snow melts away
You'll want to stay
Snowed in with me


Dec 14, 2007

Atherton Christmas

I have been trying for some time to put up a post about how our apartment is looking for Christmas, but every time I try to put the pictures up, blogger goes funny, so I am trying again, and apologizing for the lack of postage. We do not yet have internet in our apartment, and so Covenant Seminary or Bread Co. are the providers of our blog-access these days, which, perhaps, is why we are not so good at posting. It could also have something to do with our lives really not settling down yet. We seem to spend a lot of evenings out, either shopping or visiting, or something. Getting married just before Thanksgiving has meant that we are landed in having a home to set up, and holidays to prepare for and celebrate all at once, while also trying to get yet more paperwork done for my status to be changed. So, right now I am am kinda longing to a routine-rut to get stuck in! I am sure it will come though, in the 2008.... maybe.

Well, 8449 Atherton, 1W is looking pretty festive these days. We got our decorations up a
few weeks ago, and the little apartment is looking good. Here are some pictures -

Our Front Window.

Our Front Window.

Our Tree.

Our backdoor and dining room.

The word is that we are in for some this weeked. We had some ice last week, but nothing as bad as Oklahoma. That cleared up, and it even got up to 60 one day! But the forecast is 2-3 inches of snow tonight, which is pretty exciting! I feel sorry for our squirrel in weather like this though... he must get cold feet. Hopefully next week I will post some pictures of it... but we have heard those promises before!


Dec 5, 2007

It's Official!


Our friend.

We have a friendly squirrel that likes to hangout on our fire escape and he likes to come to our kitchen window when we are eating breakfast.


A Saturday Adventure.

A few weeks ago Alex and I bundled up and made a long trek out to Pere Marquette State Park and went for a hike. Here are a few pictures from our adventures:


Nov 30, 2007

Wedding Pictures

We are still waiting on the professional wedding pictures but here are a few albums from friends and family from the wedding day. Hope you all enjoy!

Album 1
Album 2
Album 3


Nov 23, 2007

Blogging at Bread Co.

We are back from honeymoon now, and getting all settled into our new apartment. Things are taking shape, although we still have a wee bit to go yet before it is just how we want it. We still do not have any internet at the apartment, and so are sitting in a Saint Louis Bread Co. having just had lunch, and taking advantage of their free internet.

We got back from honeymoon a week ago today. After a couple of nights staying in downtown St. Louis, we went to Galveston Island for the week. It is a small island in Texas, in the Gulf of Mexico, pretty close to Houston. It was pretty nice - warm (the "low" was 70 Fahrenheit - which resulted in some native Galvestonians donning wool coats - really.), and coastal.

The area which we stayed in was right at the harbour, in a hotel which was a converted harbour warehouse. It was a pretty nice hotel, and after an initial altercation about our room with the desk clerk we ended up with a suit on the end of the hotel, which looked out over the adjacent oil-rig yard, and also over the small shrimp fleet. The area near the hotel was the old historic Galveston - an area called The Strand, which was pretty nice. It was the off-season though, which meant that the shops closed pretty much just when they felt like it, and the streetcar did not seem to have schedule and was either seen in the distance, or going in the other direction!

Here are some pictures:

The Strand

The 'Mosquito Fleet' Shrimp boats... as seen from our room window.

The oil-rig yard at night... as seen from our room window.

Our hotel.

The Strand.

There are more pictures on our flickr account... click the link at the side.


Nov 11, 2007

Mr. and Mrs. Brown.

We are married. We are happy. We'll be back after awhile with updates and pictures.


Nov 2, 2007

I could write a book....

...... and I'd title it, "101 things you don't expect to happen once you get engaged!" Number 73 would be: "Contract Shingles 10 days before your wedding." That's right folks, my back is covered in shingles. I'm on medicine and the doctor says it should clear up in time for the wedding.

Alex's mom and aunt arrived last night after a long delayed day of travel. They are tired but glad to be here in Saint Louis.


Oct 29, 2007

Countdown continues....

12 days to go....

We are keeping busy with wedding details and getting our apartment all set up. We'll put pictures up eventually. Alex's mum and aunt's arrival on Thursday marks the beginning of the wedding festivities. Posting make continue to be a bit slim until after the honeymoon. We'll certainly put pictures up from the wedding and various events in the coming weeks.


Oct 16, 2007

A little Relationship Math

Alex and I have been doing this long distance relationship for almost 26 months. Now that our time apart is coming to an end I thought I'd give you an idea of some of the "numbers" from our life:

Miles travelled: 87,407.6 miles
Emails sent: over 2500
International phone minutes used: 40,740 (that's 679 hours or almost 29 days!)
Days together: 174
Days apart: 811

A little more then 24 hours and there will no longer be a long distance aspect to this relationship. It is all face to face from now on!


Oct 14, 2007

This time in 4 weeks, I will be married!

I just realised that I havent said when I am leaving the UK - sorry to all those who are wondering. I am leaving on Wednesday 17th October. That is this coming wednesday!
I fly from Glasgow-Dublin-Shannon-Chicago-St. Louis! It will be a long day, but it will be good to be back in St. Louis, with Sara. We move in to our apartment on Saturday, and will spend the next three weeks getting things in place for the wedding.
We probably wont be back until the spring, it looks like. We were planning on coming back here for Christmas, but it looks like my change in status will not have been processed by that time, and I am not allowed to leave the country until it comes through. Its a little disappointing, but not altogether surprising either. However, we would like to come back for Spring Break next year. We will think that through, and see how things come, but it looks like spring will be the earliest we could return to Scotland. We'll keep you posted though.


Oct 9, 2007

Official countdown.....

32 Days until The Big Day!

Also....check out pictures from our quick trip to London: here


Oct 6, 2007


My Visa interview went well last week, and my Visa arrived by courier this morning, so I now have all the paperwork that will enable Sara and I to get married! (finally!) We are getting married on November 10th, in Memorial Presbyterian Church in St. Louis, MO. We hope that many of you will be able to come, and celebrate with us.

Its pretty crazy how everything is now go, after months and months of waiting. Its a little overwhelming, but in a good way!


Sep 25, 2007

My dad died on Sunday.

Here is the death notice from today's paper:

Brown. - Peacefully, in Arbroath Infirmary, on Sunday, September 23, 2007, Scott Brown, of Newton Crescent, Carnoustie (formerly of Arbroath), dearly loved husband of Sandra, much loved dad of Alastair, Colin, Iain and Alexander. Funeral service in Panbride Country Church, Carnoustie, on Friday, September 28, at 11am, interment thereafter in Panbride Churchyard. All friends respectfully invited.


Sep 5, 2007

The reasons for the quiet.

To those of you who are my Facebook friends and who have not had replies to messages, or those who have for the past month or so have gotten fed up of our lack of posting on the blog, or those who I said I would call two weeks ago (Jeremy Ross), I apologise and do fully intend to be communicative again! However, there has been some stuff going on here which has somewhat distracted me, and indeed has dominated my life over the past few weeks and months.

First, there is the on-going saga of getting a Fiancee visa. Since I last posted I have been down to London for a medical, and have submitted the last piece of paper work to the US Embassy (for an expanded version of events, look here.). This whole process gets no less stressful, and the concern that I may have done something stupid on the forms, and/or that my medical would show up some unknown disease has never been far from my mind over the past few weeks. These wheels grind slowly, but not slowly enough to forget about.

Anyway, that should hopefully be resolved soon. I am just now awaiting word from the US Embassy to tell my when the appointment is for my interview! The concern is still there, but I think its fair to say that Sara and I are both pretty excited about being so close. We wont be able to set a date until I have the Visa in my hand, but we will post the date as soon as we know it!

However, there has been a second major thing going on, namely the issue of my father's health. In the last post I mentioned that he has was in hospital and that the doctors still did not know what was causing the problem. Well, he has been tested for pretty much everything. He was tested for CJD, he was tested for an infection in the brain, he was tested for dementia, he was even tested for a thing called Whipple's Disease which less that 1000 people ever have been diagnosed with. Well, the final test came back yesterday, and it was the same old story - it was normal. My mum and I spoke to the neurologist yesterday afternoon, and he told us that we have come to the end of the line, and that there was no more tests to be done. Ultimately they dont know why my dad has become like he is, but he did say that one brain scan has shown something and that that, combined with my dad's symptoms, makes it most likely that he has Progressive Supranuclear Palsy (to find out more about this go to He is not a classic case, but it is most likely what has caused his decline over the past 18 months.

PSP is not treatable, and so my dad is being transfered from Ninewells Hospital, the teaching hospital in Dundee, to Arbroath Infirmary, which is a smaller hospital closer to Carnoustie, where his care needs will be assessed. It is likely that my dad will just continue to decline at the same rate he has over the past few months.

Its not the result we were hoping, and praying for, but at least now the constant waiting for test results, and the constant uncertainty as to what to expect or think is over. We can begin to deal with the situation as it is. I really do appreciate all who have prayed, and continue to pray, for us. It has been a pretty tough few weeks and months.

So, thats the reasons for the quiet.


Aug 11, 2007

A Short Update.

Okay, so here is the scoop on what is going on in our slightly hectic, kinda stressed lives:

First of all, I had to leave St. Louis a couple of weeks ago to come back to Scotland because my dad's health took a major dive. He has now been in hospital for seven weeks, and a fortnight ago it looked pretty grim, so I was called home quick-smart. It meant that on the thursday night we were at the baseball, and the next morning I was on a plane bound for Chicago, then on one bound for Dublin, then one to Glasgow. It was a pretty crappy situation. My dad's health, thankfully, has improved slightly. He is still in hospital. He is still very ill, but he seems to be pretty stable. The doctors still dont know what is wrong, but they do seem to be getting there. (Please pray for him, and my family. This really is a pretty distressing situation for us all - please pray that God would show the doctors what the problem is, and that He would bring healing to my dad. Please pray for us, to rejoice in the "greatness of the glory of the grace of God" and to trust Him.) So, I am back in Scotland.

However, last Saturday I got a packet from the US Embassy in London telling me what the next step in the process is. So, I am booked for a medical in London in a couple of weeks, and I am filling out forms, and collecting various documents that I need to take down to London for my final interview at the Embassy. That hasnt been scheduled yet, as I need to have everything in my possession before that is done. So, as soon as everything has been collected, I mail a checklist off to them and they give me an appointment for an interview. As exciting as all this is, it is also a little nerve-racking. This is the final hurdle, and we REALLY dont want anything going wrong now.

So, these past few weeks have been full of ups and downs, and I am sure the next few will be too. Just a short update, to let you know whats what. I will post again when there is more news.


Jul 27, 2007

You Belong to Me.

My Alex had to leave somewhat unexpectedly. Right now he is flying somewhere over the Atlantic Ocean and right now I am missing this face like crazy.

See the pyramids along the Nile
See the sunrise on a tropic isle
Just remember darlin' all the while
You belong to me

See the market place in Old Algiers
Send me photographs and souvenirs
Just remember when a dream appears
You belong to me

I'll be so alone without you
Maybe you'll be lonesome too, and blue

Fly the ocean in a silver plane
See the jungle when it's wet with rain
Just remember 'til you're home again
You belong to me

Fly the ocean in a silver plane
See the jungle when it's wet with rain
Just remember 'til you're home again
You belong to me

You belong to me and next time we are together we'll be getting married!


A Saint Louis update.

Here is a bit of a pictoral update from the last few weeks in Saint Louis......

Picnic at the Botanical Garden

Concert at Tower Grove Park

Baseball with the Hagers and some pretty awesome seats (we made it on television!)

Albert about to hit a home run!

Another baseball game

Slightly different seats.


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