The Holidays

Thursday, December 31, 2009 No comments
My parent's left today to go back to Dallas after staying for a week. My sister is staying on to keep Chloe while we are away in Africa.

We had a great holiday week. It wasn't too busy, but just right. We went to the FDR Presidential Library and home and the Vanderbilt home on the Hudson River.

Chloe & Matt below a bison in the Vanderbilt estate.

PaPaw & Chloe picking up sticks and seed pods on the Vanderbilt estate.

Mom, Deanna and I went to see Bu*rn the Flo*or on Broadway and later in the week we all went into the city to go to the Natural *History *Museum.

John, Deanna, Mom, Chloe & PaPaw with "Dum Dum".

It was a bitterly cold week and today we got snowfall.

Shoveling snow with Aunt Deanna.


Wednesday, December 30, 2009 No comments
My family all arrived on Christmas Eve. My parents came in earlier in the day and we were able to go to the candlelight service at church. Chloe had already had an exciting day playing balloons with PaPaw and baking Christmas cookies for Santa that she fell asleep during the service. After church my sister and brother-in-law arrived and we had dinner together. We then allowed Chloe to open a few presents before she went to bed.
Baking cookies with Papaw.

Open an American Girl doll horse from Nana.

Chloe playing the W*ii*.

Matt got a new Por*sche for Christmas--a model Porsche from his Mom.

On Christmas we awoke to tackle the big pile of presents with Chloe's name on it. Chloe had Uncle John and PaPaw to play all her new toys with her and it have her such delight!

The First Snowman of the Year

Monday, December 21, 2009 No comments

The Blizzard of '09--

Sunday, December 20, 2009 1 comment
that's what it is being termed in our area. We received about 10" of snow. We stayed indoors most of yesterday expecting it to hit. It didn't come until the evening. We got a lot accomplished. Matt snaked our sewer pipes in preparation for the family coming (see what you have to do when you live in a 80+ year old house?) and we moved out the bed from the guest room and set up Oliver's crib. We enjoyed the evening snow by the warm fire.

Today was the Christmas pageant at church. Many children didn't show for the pageant due to the snow so it was a smaller crowd than usual. Chloe was an angel again.

After church we cleared off the walkway and driveway. Chloe is probably the only person in the area that gets excited to shovel snow. This year we bought her her very own snow shovel, sized just right. She also got to throw snow balls at us.

Flash got to see his first snow fall. He likes to roll around in it.

She Didn't Get This From Me--This Comment is ALL Daddy

Friday, December 18, 2009 No comments
Chloe snuck down to the basement and found two Bar*bie dolls I hadn't wrapped yet. I let her have them because she has WAY too many presents to open on Christmas (all BeBe's fault). As I was doing laundry she was playing with her dolls and this is what I overheard:

"Hey, have you seen my husband? He drives a Por*sche and is really cool."

Loose Teeth

Thursday, December 17, 2009 1 comment
Chloe went to the dentist today to discover that her two bottom teeth are loose. It made her day, as she hasn't lost any teeth and all of her pals seem to be running around toothless. I became a little sad at the thought she could loose her first tooth while we are away from her in Africa.

I have to prepare for the possiblilty she will loose her tooth while in the care of Aunt Deanna. I asked around yesterday to find out how much people put in the tooth fairy pillow. The first response I got was $100!! I don't think even the guilt of being in Africa while she loses her first tooth could get us to pay $100 for a tooth.

The Stress of the Holidays is Really Getting to These Two

Saturday, December 12, 2009 1 comment

We're Going to Ethiopia

The painting is complete. The house is a mess. That's ok because we've been preoccupied making plans to travel to Ethiopia to pick up Oliver. We got word on Wednesday that our U.S. Embassy appointment was set for the first week in January and that we should be in Addis Ababa by January 3. That's only two weeks earlier than we expected. We leave December 31, New Year's Eve, to go to Ethiopia.

Lots to do.

I'll post pics of the house when I get the Christmas decorations and tree together (yea, I haven't done that yet).

Hang on Until Thursday...

Wednesday, December 09, 2009 No comments

We are getting the inside of our house painted which means we are restricted to our bedrooms and the basement. Everything else is covered in plastic. Thursday it will all be done, until the floor refinisher gets here next week and the carpenter comes back to finish the quarter round.

Yesterday at Chloe's elementary the parent's were invited to help the kids start a geometry unit (geometry in kindergarten?!). I came in and helped Chloe make a foam gingerbread house and learn about basic geometry. It was cute and I enjoyed going into Chloe's classroom and seeing how things are run on a daily basis.

Holiday Memories...

Tuesday, December 08, 2009 No comments
Matt and Chloe at our village tree lighting ceremony on Friday night. Right after I took this picture, I got the email from our agency stating we had passed court and Ethiopia recognized Matt & I as Oliver's parents.
The tree (sorry these were taken with my phone).

Chloe making a Gingerbread house.

We had good news on Friday--we passed court in Ethiopia!! We should find out this week when our Embassy date will be and when we get to go and get Oliver. I am in a state of excitement and utter panic as we now race through our "to do" list of all the items we have to get done around the house, like Oliver's room!

In the meantime we are trying to get ready for the holidays and enjoy the season. Chloe went to a cooking class and made a Gingerbread house. We are going to leave it out for Santa and the reindeer, if Flash doesn't get it first. Speaking of Flash, he finished off the advent calendars for us. He managed to make it up on the table, with the help of an English Setter we believe, and enjoyed two advent calendars. Yes, I know, chocolate is poisonous to dogs. He's fine. It would take a lot of chocolate to make him sick, more than is in an advent calendar. Yesterday, he also enjoyed some Munchkins* from Dunk*in Do*nuts along with some strawberry milk. He gave a big kiss to Chloe for leaving out the yummy snack {insert sarcasm}.

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Thursday, December 03, 2009 No comments
Chloe and I seized the opportunity to put up the outside Christmas decor in this unseasonable 66 degree day. I put some *Mahalia* *Jackson* on and we began our Christmas decorating. For some reason, when Mahalia is on I feel the need to belt it out with her like I can carry a tune. It was fun though, singing a "Go Tell it on the Mountain" trio with Chloe, Mahalia and myself.

We didn't get too much accomplished as the inside of our house is getting painted next week and I didn't want to have to move all the decorations.
Chloe's favorite thing about it now being December--the advent calendar (with chocolates of course).