Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Fun

How would I describe our Christmas in one word: fast!!  Christmas this year seemed to fly right by, even though Tim and I technically celebrated three different times.

For the first time since he started working at Trader Joe's, Tim had Christmas Eve off from work.  We figured this out a few months ago and bought plane tickets up to San Francisco to celebrate Christmas with his family. On Christmas Eve, Tim and I spent the day with his mom, dad, & sister.  We took a walk and even got to see some "rein"deer.  We were also invited to Tim's Auntie Kerry & Uncle Ed's house for Christmas Eve appetizers and visiting with some of Tim's cousins.   Then we headed back over to Tim's parents for a traditional Swedish dinner.  It is tradition in Carol's family to have a full Swedish feast  on Christmas Eve and this was my first time attending.  All of the food was delicious and the company was great!!  Thanks Mormor & Carol for cooking for us!

Tim's cousin, Alana & Me

Tim's cousin, Kelly is also pregnant & due in January.

Tim's Auntie Kerry & Carol

On Christmas Day, we had a nice breakfast with Tim's family and opened our presents from each other.  Both sides of our families (mine & Tim) both decided to scale back on the presents, so it made those we recieved that much more special. Right as we finished opening presents the Milton's neighbor, Rosie, came by for a visit.  She is such a fun lady and it was great to catch up with her as well.

Opening presents

A visit with Rosie

We then left for the airport (after stashing our goodies into our suitcases) and flew back to San Diego.  We made it back just as the Chargers game was starting, along with a headache for me.  I had two root canals done the Tuesday before Christmas and they were flaring up.  So, Tim and I took a detour to our house for me to take some medicine and rest.  While we were home we did watch some of the Chargers game, and one of our Christmas wishes came true...a  Chargers win.

My cousin, Cyndy, hosted Christmas at her house this year for my mom's whole family (I believe there were 36 total people!?) so we were able to join everyone for leftover food and family presents.  It is always fun to see what we each got each other (we draw names) and to catch up with family we haven't seen for awhile.  Thanks Cyndy & Josh for hosting everyone!

Adelyn got another quilt from Aunt Sandy
for Christmas!

And Uncle Dick thought he might be as
big as me...little did he know I am pretty big now!

Our hosts (Cyndy & Josh with Taylor) with my grandparents

Whew...the next morning my family came over for breakfast and we celebrated our Christmas together.  We ate and chatted then opened presents.  It was a good time of catching up since we haven't really been together, just the five of us, in a long time.  Alison & Tim both had to work, so we sent them off while the three of us lounged around and went to the movies.

Needless to say, we had a Christmas full of family and love and hope you had the same.

Side Note: Thanks for the pictures, Carol!  I really appreciate you sending them to me. Mandy, thanks for sharing the pictures too!!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Most Memorable Car Ride of 2009

Car ride. What did you see? How did it smell? Did you eat anything as you drove there? Who were you with?

This may seem like a wierd question as a reflection on 2009.  However, I have spent a lot of 2009 in a car.  I drive 30 minutes each way to work every day.  Tim & I drove 1000s of miles in Australia and have driven up to Nor Cal.  While many of my drives include great conversations and fun times, there is really only one drive that sticks out in my head as most memorable.

Unfortunately the most memorable drive I took this year was on the day my Aunt Amy passed away.  There were a lot of things going through my head as I was driving up to Los Angeles to be with my family.  I didn't listen to the radio much but was thinking of how fast life flies by and how each every day is special.  I was thinking of how life is so precious and how we always need to tell those we love how much they mean to us.  And I was thinking of how much my family and I would miss my Aunt Amy and how she was taken from us too soon.  I cried a lot and ironically the weather reflected my somber mood.  The ride started off rainy and slowly turned to some really dark clouds with sun peaking through. Those sun beams gave me hope and reminded me that my aunt was in a place where she would no longer feel pain and I took it as her sign that she was okay.  The sky was so beautiful that I tried to take a picture while driving (I know...I know...no picture taking while driving). 

My Aunt Amy was a really special woman and to have a drive like that, where I felt she was at peace, helped me be at peace too.  My family was lucky to have Aunt Amy as part of our lives and she will always be with us.  Aunt Amy, thanks for riding with me on a drive I will always remember.

Best Restaurant Moment of 2009

Restaurant moment. Share the best restaurant experience you had this year. Who was there? What made it amazing? What taste stands out in your mind?

I love food.  And I love going out for food.  This year, like most years, Tim and I have eaten out in many different restaurants. That said, I think this year the best dining experience we had was at the Melting Pot in La Jolla.  If you have ever been to the Melting Pot, you know the food is delicious and the whole meal is an experience.  However, on this particular trip to the Melting Pot we had FANTASTIC service and food.  The waiter was on top of everything and recommended a wine that was stellar.  Overall the night was just awesome and both Tim and I left relaxed and happy. 

This may not have been the best food we had all year, but it is definitely the experience that stands out in my head. 

Here are some pictures:

The food waiting to be cooked

The food being cooked

And the very satisfied customers

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Charger Sundays

If you know me well, you know that I love the Chargers.  If I am by a TV and the Chargers are on, I am watching.  I own quite a bit of Charger gear, but was a little concerned when I found out I was going to be pregnant during football season. I wasn't going to fit into my normal clothes!  My aunt, however, took care of the clothes situation.  She bought me a maternity Chargers shirt that should fit me up until February. 

Thanks Aunt Nancy!!

Since I also get very worked up during games, my mom and sister have decided that I needed a babysitter during the game to make sure I stay calm.  Lucky for me, they also like to do stuff for me while they are here.  Auntie Alison has worked very hard these past couple of Sundays to help get BGM's stuff put together so we are ready for her.  She has helped put the bedding in the crib, hung the mobile, put all of the clothes in the dresser, and put the swing & bouncer together.  This has been a huge help for me and Tim and less frustration for us!  Here is what has been accomplished so far:

The room with all of the goodies all put together!

Thanks Auntie Alison!


The Best Trip of 2009

Tim and I have been really lucky to have traveled quite a bit this past year.  We have been to Las Vegas (several times), Arizona, Australia, Northern California (a couple of times), Mexico, Santa Barbara, Vermont, and there are probably more that I am forgetting.  All of the trips were filled with special moments, but I would have to say the best trip of 2009 was our Australia trip.
Since we have been married ,Tim and I have really tried to take at least one "big" trip a year with every other year being a "really big" trip that requires airline tickets and extensive planning.  This year was a "really big" year and for the first time, we both traveled somewhere that required us to get passports and learn about "foreign" customs.  Australia was so diverse and beautiful that I will always treasure the moments we had in Australia, even the frustrating car rides and bland food. 
Australia was very much like the United States, but we still learned a lot about the vibe of the different cities and about the culture of Australians.  We also learned we can handle 18 hour flights and navigating roads, despite being on the "wrong" side of the road.  We learned Australian's don't drink high alcohol beer, but drink lots of fancy hot chocolate.  Australia may be known for Uggs outside of the states, but you are lucky if you can find a pair of "real" Uggs in Australia.  Sydney was beautiful, Melbourne was eclectic and pretentious, and Brisbane was an odd mixture of people.
But it was still fabulous:


Tim in Port Macquarie

Me, putting my feet in the South Pacific Ocean

At the National Zoo, where kangas are uncaged.

Koko Black in Canberra

It was just great to escape for a few weeks and explore a new country.
So, what was your best trip of 2009?

Reflecting on 2009

As you can tell from my previous posts, I have been stretching to find things to write about.  I talked to my cousin, Cyndy, about this brain block, and she found me a solution!  The solution is to reflect on what has happened over 2009.  She found a blog by a woman named Gwen Bell, who has a prompt for each day in December to reflect on.  http://www.gwenbell.com/blog/2009/11/30/the-best-of-2009-blog-challenge.html  So, for the rest of the month, I will probably choose a few prompts to respond on.  Hope you enjoy!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Coming Home During the Holidays

There is nothing else like coming home during the holidays.  The Christmas lights hung outside, the Christmas tree all lit up, and all of the rest make me feel all warm inside.  This weekend I put the finishing touches on our house for the holidays.  Here are some pictures of some of the few things I look forward to seeing when I come home at night.

Our small display of lights

A wreath I made

Our tree

And our stockings hung by the fireplace

Happy Holidays Everyone!

The Holidays

I love the holidays and how it all starts with Thanksgiving.  While I try to be thankful for what I have each and every day, Thanksgiving is the perfect time to reflect and share how we feel with everyone around us.

This Thanksgiving Tim and I were lucky to spend the day with both of our families.  We had great dinners at both my Aunt Nancy's house (Thanks Aunt Nancy!) and Tim's Uncle Rob's house (Thanks Rob & Jill!!).  Needless to say, Tim and I (and BGM too) were stuffed to the gills by the time we were done. Unfortunately, I did not take any pictures, something I need to work on doing, but we were able to see most of our families.  We missed those of you who were celebrating elsewhere, but each and every one of you were in our thoughts.

Since Tim's family was down, we also had my baby shower on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  To add to my already reflective mood, I was able to celebrate becoming a mommy with some friends and family.   I know I cried a lot, but truly it is only because my little girl is so lucky to be born into a family and group of friends who are so loving and caring.  A big thank you to my sisters and Colleen for planning the shower and to my mom for opening her house to host it!!  You are all the best!!  I did bring my camera to the shower, but this time I forgot to charge my battery beforehand.  So, Mandy took some pictures for me (before her camera also died) and I have a couple below. 

Prego at 28 weeks

The wonderful hostess' (& me)

The yummy individual cheesecakes!

Now I am getting ready for Christmas and cannot help but think, I will have a 10 month old next Christmas!!  How amazing how much your life can change in a year....  And for now I am going to enjoy the holidays, the decor, the shopping, and you, the people I get to share my life with.  I hope you all have been having a great holiday season!!  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What a week!

I love being a teacher.  If you know me well, you know that I get frustrated with students and the nuiances of my job, but I really do love teaching, especially when it comes to holiday breaks! This week, I am off for Thanksgiving break, and I am thankful for each and every day I don't have to wake up at 5 am and go to work.  It has helped me get quite bit accomplished. 

Yesterday, I had my monthly check-up with my OB-Gyn, Dr. Sowa.  Everything looks and sounds good and nothing new to report.  Starting Monday, I have nightly homework.  I get to count how long it takes for our little girl to kick me 10 times.  I can't say I mind this homework though, because feeling our little one kicks is probably one of the few things about being pregnant that I actually like. :-) 
Today, Tim, his parents, and I went to my 28 week ultrasound appointment.  It was so fun to see how much our little girl has grown since her 18 week ultrasound.  We got some 4D pictures and wow, they are so defined!!  You can see everything.  Our perintologist says everything looks good, so two days of good news!
Here is one of the ultrasound pictures:


I am also lucky that I got to spend someof my week with my in-laws, Carolyn & Dennis.  They both took off the week to visit Tim, Colleen, and I and we have gotten to spend a lot of quality time together.  Little did they know, however, that when they came to my house that I would have some "projects" for them.   Dennis is very handy (which Tim didn't really get from his father), so we asked if he could assemble our baby's furniture for us.  We also bought a new dresser from Ikea that Dennis assembled.  What a guy!  He didn't end up doing it all alone, and below I have pictures of Tim's mom, sister, and dad all assembling our furniture. Thanks Dennis, Carol, & Colleen!!

And the finished products:

The baby's crib

The baby's dresser (which is the same color as the crib even though it looks lighter)

Our new dresser

Wow, what a busy week!! 

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Making Room

When Tim & I bought our condo we opted to buy a 2 bedroom, not because we thought we would start a family soon, but more to store all of the "stuff" we have.  Little did we know, we would be welcoming a little one only 2 years after we bought our home.

Over the past couple of weeks we have really been thinking about how to clean out our guest room/office to make room for our little girl and boy has the task seemed daunting.  Last week I started cleaning out the closet and stopped after about 5 minutes because I was so overwhelmed.  This week, however, Tim & I both took stabs at cleaning out the closet and organizing what we had.  Surprisingly we have found places for almost everything from the room (big thanks to my mom who is letting us store some stuff at her house!) and today we moved the majority of the office furniture out and moved the baby's furniture (which is still in boxes) in.  Wow!!  What a chore but so rewarding at the same time.  Now it is time to assemble the furniture....with Dennis' help, I am hoping it will go well and we will be one step closer to being ready for our little girl. Wish us luck!!    


Wow...who knew I would ever become a blogger?  I never thought I would until I started reading some of my friends blogs.  It is such a great way to hear what is happening in other people's lives that I thought I should start sharing more about mine.  I hope you enjoy reading about Tim & my adventures as we become first time parents.