Thursday, March 24, 2011


I am finally making the infamous Peace Corps Application Timeline, mainly to make peace with how long this process took. . .

April 1, 2010 - Ryan and I both submitted  our completed applications, including recommendations. 

April 14, 2010 - Interviewed with our recruitment officer.

June 2, 2010 - Nominated to Sub Saharan African, June 2011, speaking French, Ryan teaching ESL and myself in Community Development.

June 9, 2010 - Received legal papers, nomination, & medical papers in the mail.

June 16, 2010 - Legal papers received by Peace Corps, legally cleared.

August 14, 2010 - Medical papers received by Peace Corps.
  • August 20, 2010 - Recieved e-mail explaining that I was missing my uranalysis test, and both of us were missing our Hep B Surface Antibody test.  Also, Ryan forgot to sign some forms...
  • August 23, 2010 - Sent in all missing information to Peace Corps.
August 20, 2010 - Dental Cleared.

October 2, 2010 - Attended a Peace Corps Information Pot Luck dinner.

October 26, 2010 - Medical Cleared under the restriction that Ryan's asthma (who knew he even had it - not me!) would not permit us to go to the country we were originally nominated for (turns out that was Senegal!)

November 12, 2010 - Sent in updated resumes.

November 29, 2010 - E-mail from placement giving us 2 options: Eastern Europe leaving in April (turns out that would have been Ukraine!), both teaching English, or Sub Saharan Africa, leaving in June, but no longer speaking French, Ryan teaching English and myself in Community Development. 

December 3, 2010 - Interview with placement officer.  We decided on Sub-Saharan African leaving in June because Africa is awesome, and I don't want to be cold. Oh, and also, I was really set on Community Development, and Ryan was really set on teaching, so that option obviously fit our preferences better.

December 13, 2010 - INVITED!! Swaziland, Africa, leaving on June 2, 2011, Ryan teaching Non-formal Education and myself in Community Health regarding HIV AIDS advocacy.  AWESOME!

December 14, 2010 - Accepted invitation to serve, sent in updated resume and aspiration statement.

December 17, 2010 - Sent in passport papers / filled out other important documents.

Looonnnnngggg waaaiiiittttt

June 2, 2011 - Staging!! More information will be forthcoming when Ryan and I receive it, although it looks like our date for staging has been pushed back to June 7th, but that has not been formally announced...

June 4 or 9, 2011 - Leaving for Swaziland!!

Introducing...Ryan Hall

Hey everyone. I just want to take a second to introduce myself. Addy is kind of helming this blog before we head out to Africa, detailing our efforts to get ready, buying stuff, etc... You will be hearing more from me as our Peace Corps experience in Swaziland unfolds. In the meantime I am preparing lists. Lists of books I am planning on taking to Africa, what music to fill up my 8 gig I-Pod with, etc... I will be asking for your input as these lists develop. Right now this is about the only thing I can do to stop from TOTALLY FREAKING OUT that we are actually going to be living in Africa for two years. I am super excited and cannot wait to be completely and totally immersed in our host country's culture and community. Until then you can read about my exploits in the world of music blogging at Tome to the Weather Machine. Tune in for more later.

Ryan H.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Emergency Essentials

Living in SLC for the past two years, I have found many benefits of living in, what I am convinced, is the most neurotic city on the planet.  SLC citizens worry about many things - government takeovers, earthquakes, fluoride in the water supply, the apocalypse, - I digress. This weekend I learned that a huge benefit to all of this neurosis is that SLC is filled with Army Surplus and Emergency Preparedness stores. While that meant nothing to me a mere couple of months ago, getting invited to serve in the Peace Corps has changed that attitude. Going over a list of all the things we need to buy before June, my suave mother-in-law knew just the place to go! Emergency Essentials was so awesome that I barely mocked at the two older ladies in the corner talking about a government takeover and socialism coming in a mere couple of months. (It’s a good thing I didn’t shout I was joining the Peace Corps…)

Thus far Ryan and I have purchased the following for our trip:
Hiking Backpack x 2 ($25.00 a piece!)
Sleeping Bag x 2 ($30.00 a piece)
AM/FM Radio
First AID Kit
Emergence – C
Eye Masks

Even though we still have a long way to go, it was a good start, and done very cheaply.

In other news: I turned 24 on Thursday, ran 20 miles on Friday, and enjoyed a great weekend with my in-laws and an old friend from High School.  Ryan’s Tome to the Weather Machine website presented a show on Saturday with four different bands that went very smoothly and was well attended.  (Check out to check out the details.)  Overall, it was a very productive and exciting weekend. I am off to run on my new slick Mizuno sneaks!

-          A

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Oh Hai!

Hello out there to all who have happened to stumble on this blog (or should I say, Hello, Mom and Dad!) Ryan and I have finally started a blog dedicated to our Peace Corps journey, which, although over a year in the making, has not even happened yet! But, in a short two and a half months time, we will be leaving the United States and settling into our new home in Swaziland, Africa.  (If you are anything like us, right now you will be wikipedia'ing Swaziland, so for your convenience, here is the link

Before we leave we will be adding a timeline of our application process, a packing list, road trip pictures, etc.  As a bonus, Ryan and I will also be complaining a lot about training and running the SLC marathon, which is April 16th.  Stay tuned..

- A