Tuesday, November 25, 2008

A Really Fun Weekend (and it could be yours!)

This past weekend, we were thrilled to host the Blank family (friends from Germany). Jeff is completing JAG training at UVA and the family was up to see him, so they all made it up to DC for a whirlwind tour. We love hosting friends here and John's great at giving a tour of the highlights, even if you don't have a lot of time. I'm better at showing cute shops and choosing yummy restaurants, Anna's great at sharing toys, so with all of us, you can't go wrong. I didn't get many (okay, any), great shots of the 3 cute girls together, but luckily Mandy is a way more coordinated Mommy than I am. Check out their blog for photos and the run-down of what we accomplished in just over 24 hours.

While I'm at it, I'll put in a plug for coming to see us. Just a reminder that we have lots of space and we love visitors! The holidays are coming, and I know people are busy, but if you have some time off you don't know what to do with, come on over! There's so much to do here that's free and pretty family-friendly.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Where do you blog from?

As I read your blogs (those of you who have them), I try to imagine where you're sitting and what's around you. It's also fun to hear your voices in my head as I read. So, I tag everyone. Take a photo of where you blog from and post it. Tell us about the place, what goes on in the background, what you should be doing instead, etc. If you're more 21st-century and have the lovely convenience of a laptop and wireless and can blog from anywhere in your house, take a shot of the most common place you blog. Since it's my idea, I'll go first. Our 6-year old desktop computer is down in our basement, which is actually a very nice basement. It's a multi-functional office, gym, laundry room, bedroom for naps and guests, and even has a cozy fireplace, which John built a fire in a week ago and smoked up the whole house. As I write this entry, I can hear Anna singing and talking herself to sleep over the intercom. John's behind me on the futon studying for a Microeconomics exam. Behind him is our "gym." It's really just an elliptical machine and a weight bench we just got off Craig's List. The elliptical is strategically positioned so that I can watch something online (usually from HGTV) while I exercise. Anyway, here's where I sit. This is our new desk and it's the first real desk we've owned. Enjoy it in it's virginal dust-free, not-yet-cluttered state.



For cuteness's sake, here's Anna getting ready to pump some iron.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Photos of Family Time

I can't believe almost a week has gone by since we returned from home and seeing family last weekend. We had such a great time and made more fun memories to tuck away. It was exciting to share the news of the forthcoming boy, as well. Anna was thrilled to attend another wedding and has been talking about it since. Last night at dinner she told me, "I'm going to have a wedding when I get bigger. And you can watch me dance with my Daddy." Okay, little girl, but Daddy and I are in no hurry!

Our first stop was at Granny Jeanne and Go Gran's for lunch, Nanny joined us, too. It's so special that Anna knows all her great-grandparents on Mommy's side.



The next day was my cousin Linden's wedding. I feel a little old because I can remember going to see her when she was born. I was 6. Isn't she lovely? (JStar, this is the girl I say you look like when your hair is straight, but her hair is curled in this, so you don't really look alike here.)



Anna had her cake on Papa's lap, commenting, "I just yike to eat the icing!"



Here are Papa's 3 girls. Though he hasn't admitted it, I know he's already scheming plans of hunting and fishing with the grandson.



We had a great day on Sunday with Grammie, Uncle Will, Aunt Mary, and the cousins, but this was the only shot I got of it. The kids were too busy playing (Grammie has some awesome play areas set up -- we like to call it Grammie University) and it's neat that Anna's arrived at the age where she can run off and really play with them. They are so sweet to her. Hooray for cousins everywhere we went (and the wonderful hand-me-downs they give us)!



We're so thankful for our big, wonderful family.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

It's time for some family time!

We haven't been home in 4 months and tomorrow we head to the prettier southwestern side of the state; out of the eye pollution of buildings, cars, and concrete and into the mountains in their fall glory. It can't come soon enough! I do enjoy city life, but I have this deep need to be near natural Creation, too.

My cousin is getting married on Saturday and we'll spend the rest of the weekend seeing family. Anna is so excited she's going to get to see grandparents, great-grandparents, cousins, aunts, uncles...she even reminded me today of the "tractor and moos" that await at Nanny and Papa's house.

We'll be back on Monday. Hope everyone has a fun weekend!

Monday, November 03, 2008

It's A / Another

Baby!



Isn't HE cute?!

Yep, it's a boy and definitely a boy! We're delighted. We're looking to trade in lots of pink stuff for lots of blue stuff if anyone's interested. Anna is also happy and doesn't seem bothered that it's not a baby sister.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Busytown!

On a bit of a whim we headed to Bethesda Friday morning and joined about 80 squirmy elementary schoolers at Imagination Stage to watch Busytown - a theatrical production based on Richard Scarry's books. Anna's a fan of his books and was so excited to see some of her favorites in live action. Huckle Cat, Lowly Worm and Green Pickle Car kept her entertained for the entire show. Photos of the production weren't allowed, but you can check out the site to see a bit of the stage, props, and characters. It was really well done! Here's Anna before the show started:



We were blessed with a beautiful day on Friday. For once I had enough forethought to realize the show would be letting out around lunchtime. Before leaving I snagged some stuff from the cupboards figuring we could find a park or something nearby for a little picnic. It worked out great. After the show we headed over to Potomac Overlook Park in Arlington and enjoyed a tasty lunch in the warm sunshine, the fall colors gleaming all around. After eating we spent some time running about, then headed home for a nap.




Maybe we're just boring, getting old, or lazy, or subconsciously too sugar-conscious, or because we grew up in a box, but our Halloween wasn't much of an event. I ran out that afternoon to get some candy for anticipated trick-or-treaters. Anna had no clue of the holiday that pads the pockets of dentists, but at dinner we told her some children would be coming over in silly clothes asking for candy and she could help us give them some. That was enough to get her excited! A little later we were visited by Thomas the Tank Engine, Tinkerbell, Optimus Prime, Indiana Jones, and some others we couldn't identify.

I guess we started to feel a little sorry for the little girl happily giving out candy, but not receiving any (though I had grossly overestimated how many kids we'd have and still have a ton of candy). We decided a little trick-or-treating lite was in order. I ran upstairs and grabbed something to make an impromptu costume. There are no pictures, but donning a headband with big, yellow-glittery flower petals sticking out all over, I guess you could say Anna was a sunflower dressed in a striped fleece. We took her across the street to our neighbors' and she gave us some candy, we chatted a bit with her, then we came back home. That was that. Don't worry, our child is FAR from deprived, and really, it seems the more you make a big deal about something little, the more she seems to just enjoy the little things. We're pretty sure she went to bed happy, and really had no clue what she missed out on. Maybe next year we'll do better.

The rest of the weekend was as gorgeous as Friday and we got to spend it with friends new and old. We have much to be thankful for.

Check back tomorrow...we hope to have some news!