Thursday, May 22, 2014

New York, New York! (And other fun tidbits)

Greetings from DC. We are all doing well and are thrilled that spring has finally arrived! It was definitely a long and cold winter. Let's see.... What's new? Oh, last weekend we went up to New York to visit friends and had a blast. Seeing Andres, Tony, John, Su's college friends was great, as was catching up with my dear friend Gerri-Ann and her husband Kev and the kids.

I must say, though, hearing from Danny that his favorite part of the trip was getting to watch Andres and Tony's huge TV made us both cringe just a little bit. But it was indeed a really BIG screen compared to ours, so I can understand his excitement!

We did more than watch television however. This pic of the boys is from our trip to Brooklyn. We went there so I could show the boys where my family lived when I was born, and they were totally unimpressed. Not unimpressed by Brooklyn, they just thought it was a little lame to take a stroll down memory lane. Oh well. I enjoyed it!
It was taken in Broolkyn's DUMBO area (which apparently stands for Down Under the Manhattan and Brooklyn Overpasses). Loved the view of the city from there.

Anyway, I figured today would be a good day to pull out some memorable quips from our facebook posts over the past few months. Hope you enjoy. Here you go... 

May 21 
So, Su and I were eating black olives last night and little Benji was suddenly very interested. Turns out he thought we'd said that they had pigs inside of them. He was duly disappointed when he saw the pits.

May 10
Danny just ran back from our favorite neighbor's house and announced that he couldn't get to their door because their cat was in the way. "Did you tell her to move?" "No, I don't speak cat!"

April 7
My auto correct on this thing keeps turning the word "toddler" to "fiddler". They do like to try and play us I guess, so I'll accept this.

April 3
While affixing a patch to Danny's Cub Scout uniform, the boys chatted about ranks. Four year old Benji wondered if after attaining the highest Eagle Scout rank, the boys get a chance to be Girl Scouts. Something to do with access to cookies. Still smiling

March 20
For fun tonight, Danny's Cub Scout leader showed the kids a rotary phone. Hilarity ensued (for the adults at least) as they all gave it a try!

March 8 
Danny just asked if his name was Danny Focus. Hmmm...maybe we say that a bit too much?

February 15

Our 4 year old had his Ninjas all lined up at lunch and was telling us that his blue Ninja had Chicken Pox. Turned out he meant Nunchucks. In his defense, they are both pretty dangerous.

And that's all folks! Until next time! -Monica

Monday, May 05, 2014

Prides, Joys and Other Stuff...

Once again it's been far too long since I've posted. I really want to do a better job at keeping up with this blog.  I see it as a tool to be able to remember things that will otherwise slip into oblivion in the years to come. Now if I could just remember to post! ;-) Anyhoooo...

It's hard to post about things other than our children. They are such an incredibly huge part of our life. And even though it's probably yawn-inducing to those who do pop over to read this blog from time to time, all I can say is that I can't really help it. For me not to write about them would be akin to a pastor not talking about God or a child not talking about yum yum.

This all being said, I will take a few minutes to chat about all the other things going on in our lives before turning to our prides and joys. ;-)

Susanne has been on a grand jury for the past several weeks--every weekday for a whole month. She's learned a lot about some of the crime that goes on in the District of Columbia (disturbing to say the least), and has also met some really incredible new friends among her fellow jurors. I guess you really bond when you have to come in together ever day for so long and get some down time during which you cannot use your electronic devices.  She's been at her job as a social worker for almost 12 years so I think it was kind of nice for her to get a break from that and engage her brain in a different way for a while. That jury will reconvene two more times in this month and I think they will all enjoy seeing each other again.

This weekend I had a wonderful opportunity to travel to a rented place in the mountains of North Carolina to help a dear Peace Corps friend celebrate her 50th birthday. It was just the birthday girl Alvina and our fellow RPCV Carrie as well as one of Alvina's neighbors. It was just a blast to go down memory lane. The bond I formed with Alvina and Carrie more than 25 years ago when we joined the Peace Corps and served in Guatemala as health workers is an incredible one.

I treasured our time together in North Carolina, and also enjoyed the solitude of my long (8 hour +) drives there and back through the scenic rural areas of Virginia and NC.  Susanne had gotten me XM radio for the car as a gift recently, and I just smiled the whole time listening to "The Bridge" which plays classic folk rock from the '70s. The best part was that all the songs were so familiar and yet when I heard them in my youth I could not have imagined that I'd be married to a woman someday. And not just any woman. This one. Just thinking about Susanne as I listened to those songs that are buried somewhere in my reptilian brain I guess, just made me so happy. I guess I'm just feeling a lot of love lately and that's a really nice thing.

Work is going well. I have a new boss and he's really great so I'm in a very good place there. We are building a new back deck and getting beautiful brick pavers out back of our row house and we are THRILLED that we'll be able to enjoy the extra space with no mosquitoes! We've had some conflict with a neighbor who was convinced that our survey was not right, but it was indeed correct. That could be a whole nother blog post but never mind. Life is good.

Our sweet Danny will turn 7 later this month. Seven! As his birthday falls around Memorial Day when our pool opens we've always had his party there, but this year he's requested a treasure hunt! I'm sure there will be tons of pictures soon of the festivities, but we know that the treasure will be found over at our lovely new park across the street. Hopeful that the sprinklers there will be turned on weather permitting.

Today for the first time ever, I had to loosen the adjustable waist bands on Danny's shorts--he's really growing! Here is a pic of him last week (in the cap) at his cub scout meeting. I love that he loves scouts and soccer. He's also made great strides in learning to read this year as a first grader. He's doing really well in English and math. Struggles with the Spanish, but he's improving. He makes us very proud!


And Benjamin? He will turn 5 in six short months. That boggles my mind. He's our smart, strong-willed, funny face making, rock star! Full disclosure: I am completely biased. ;-)

Here is a picture of him yesterday at a Drum Circle that Susanne took the boys to with some of her new juror friends. 

All in all, we're good. Heading up to NY to see friends in a few weeks. The boys will have a week of baseball camp once school finishes. And then there is always the pool and the new back porch! Hasta la vista. I'll try to blog more frequently, but I'm not making any promises. ;-) -Monica