This Is Us.

This is me, Kirsten (kier-sten) Rumble. I’m twenty-six, a native of Buffalo, NY, a dog mom and a person that asks too many questions. I live an ordinary life except for the fact that for nine months of the year, I live abroad with my husband and our dog for his professional hockey career.  Well to me, this is ordinary, but for others who I talk to when I come home who don’t understand this life, don’t think it’s very normal at all. After encouragement from friends & family, I started this blog for my own sake and my own memory because as my passport can prove, I’ve seen a lot of things (and only want to see more) and my brain can only remember so much. Ever since I can remember, traveling has always been my biggest passion and the greatest love in my life. Ever since the day I learned about the seven continents in third grade and made a clay map of Asia and a brochure about Australia, places I’d never been, I haven’t stopped wanting to explore. From going on family road trips in the United States when I was young, to my first trip abroad in Paris at the age of sixteen, to studying abroad in Italy for a semester in college, I have been obsessed with people and cultures from around the world. One day when I am sitting around with my grandchildren, I want to teach them how important traveling is and what it can do for one’s soul. I want to fill my home with things from far away and miss the food, people and cultures I came across along the way. I want to retire with memories and live for the moments while I can. This world has so much to offer in its beauty that I cannot contain my excitement in deciding what to see next. If I die tomorrow, I will be so happy that I took my time to see the world. Old soul, waiting my turn, I know a few things but I still got a lot to learn.

This is my husband, Christopher Rumble. We met in 2014 when I was twenty and he was weeks away from turning twenty-four like the number on the back of his Canisius hockey jersey. Oops, I met and fell in love with a hockey player. “GREAT,” my mom said. Chris changed my life in so many ways and the biggest gift he has given to me and all of those who he surrounds himself with is the gift of loving life. In 2012 he was diagnosed with leukemia and spent six months at Seattle Children’s Hospital. Look at this amazing video he made during his time there that went viral and touched so many hearts. After he was released from the hospital, he was so determined to play hockey again, that he flew/moved all the way across the country from Seattle to Buffalo to attend the college that gave him a chance to continue his career – and boy am I glad he did. His determination led to so much success that he now plays hockey professionally. Because of him, we get to live the life we do, traveling the world together. While he started out playing in the U.S., with not much going on travel wise, he decided to take his career abroad. For the past three seasons he played in the DEL, an awesome league in Germany, where we absolutely loved life, drank great beer and meet some of the best people. Since COVID has really affected the professional sports world, we had a long summer of unknown when it came to his career and the status of hockey in Europe in general. However, like Chris always does, he found his way. He is now playing for the Stavanger Oilers in Norway where we have just uprooted our life to. Life just got so much more fun! Ok Chris, I’m done tooting your horn.

This is my son, Shadow. Well, we now call him Schnitzel more than Shadow, but I guess we can’t change his passport now. He is a Labradoodle from Kentucky but he doesn’t look very doodley at all. Chris surprised me with Shadow for Christmas in 2015 and I had no idea how much this little man would change our lives. I couldn’t imagine a life without this guy by my side –  making me get off the couch to go for walks, sharing dinner plates, the best spoon cuddles and so many freakin’ baths because he always takes the muddy path. ANY site or form of water – in a hose, in a pool, an ocean or any stinky dirty pond, he goes wild (he is LOVING his new life in Stavanger being on the ocean). Fun fact, his birthday is on Halloween, making that day even more of a favorite in our household. He is so well behaved and growing grey hair already, that we think he is an old man in a five-year-old’s body. He won’t even play with dogs he’s never met before at the dog park. Like my grandpa likes to say, “I’m 85 years old, if I want to do something, I’ll do it.”

Did I know you once, in another life?
Are we here just once? Or a billion times?