Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas Friends

Hi Friends, I'm sorry we have been MIA the past couple of weeks but it has been crazy getting ready for Christmas. Every year I promise myself that I will not procrastinate, and every year I break that promise. So we did all of our shopping Saturday morning. We actually busted it out pretty quickly. We cut back on the number of people we bought for this year, so that made it a little easier.

Ainsley has been a trooper over the past couple of weeks. We've been travelling so much, and when we aren't travelling, we're barely home. We're out running around trying to get things done. So bed time has been late, dinner has been quick and nap time has been virtually non existent. But like I said, she's been really great. Also, she has almost completely resisted the temptation to rip every ornament off the Christmas tree...almost. She does, every once in awhile, pull one down...but that's to be expected really.

She is talking like crazy these days. Still can't understand a whole lot, but she definitely has things to say. Also, she loves to sing, and she loves when Clif and I sing which is really amazing since neither of us have the greatest voice.

Well, no pictures today because I'm posting from work, but I will have a whole bunch after Christmas.

I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas. Stay safe and spend lots of time with the ones you love. We will be thinking of you all at this very special time.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Snow in Connecticut and Strolling through the Big Apple

I've been wanting to post sooner this week, but I am still trying to catch up on sleep from the very busy weekend. We crammed so much into 3.5 days, I hardly know where to start...I guess the beginning...

Well, I won't lie, I was totally stressed about flying with Ainsley. I really didn't know how she would react and it didn't help that we ended up sitting on the tarmac for an hour. Since our flight was just after 5 and Ainsley usually doesn't have dinner until 6:30 or so, we thought we'd be safe in waiting until we landed to eat. In hindsight, that probably was not the best plan, but actually Ainsley did great. I know she was hungry, but she was a trooper. There were so many fun and exciting things to see (lights out the window, the TV)

and do (push the buttons on the remote, turn the overhead lights on and off a million times)

and play with (the seat back tray, the window shade)

that I can see where she would forget to be hungry.

We arrived at my brother-in-law, Cameron's, house just around 9 and we were pretty tired so we pretty much went to bed to get an early start on Saturday. We travelled a little over an hour north to visit Clif's grandparents in their nursing home. Ainsley was a little shy at first, but she warmed up pretty quickly. Clif's grandparents were completely smitten with her. She played with Gramps' hat and gave Nanny high fives.

After the visit at the nursing home, we went to Clif's Uncle Billy and Auntie Alaine's house. There Ainsley got to meet a bunch of Clif's cousins and aunts and uncles. She seemed to have a great time and everyone loved her...of course, how could they not.

On our way back to Cam's house, we stopped at a tree farm and picked out Cameron and Amanda's Christmas tree. We also had some cider and sat by the fire for a bit. Caitlyn and Oliver also picked out a tree...I believe they called it an elf tree :)

We got home and Ainsley crashed after a very full day with very few and short naps. Cam and Amanda decorated the Christmas tree, while Clif and I sat on the couch and had a few cocktails. snowed. Not the kind of snow we have here, it actually snowed and stuck to the ground. I am really not a fan of snow, but I can deal with it once a year when it's pretty and white and perfect. So it was kind of nice.

Sunday we took it easy in the morning waiting for Amanda to finish tutoring. Then we took the train into New York City. Somehow, even with a leisurely morning, Ainsley managed not to take a nap. So again I was a bit nervous about how she would be. She didn't sleep on the train, but she fell asleep shortly after bundling her up and putting her in her stroller. She slept for probably an hour while we walked down 5th Ave.

We went to FAO Schwartz. We saw the Christmas tree lit up in Rockefeller Plaza, and we took a handsome cab ride through Central Park.

It was very cold, but it was so beautiful. I really love New York. I've only been there a few times, but it's just so fun and exciting to be there. I love the energy and the buildings and the atmosphere and just everything...except, I will say, people are a bit more rude there. We had the most horrible waitress...I'm not even going to get started.

Monday we hung out at Cam's most of the day and then headed back to the airport for our flight home. We had such a great time. Thanks so much to Cam and Amanda for letting us Ainsley-fy your house.

We got home late Monday and then when we stopped for gas, at about midnight, Clif's car wouldn't start again. Luckily it was a simple battery connection issue. No major (read expensive) fix. But it was definitely tough getting home at 1:30 then trying to work the next day. I'm still a bit tired. My house is still a disaster...we pretty much dropped everything at the front door and haven't unpacked yet.

So basically, the trip was great. Ainsley did so awesome at every turn. I always get so nervous that she's going to melt down because she didn't eat on time or didn't sleep on time and she always, 99.9% of the time, proves me wrong. I guess there's something to be said for never getting your child on a schedule...she's very adaptable. Or maybe she's just perfect ;)

This weekend, and next, we will be spending at home getting ready for Christmas and relaxing. We've had a very hectic couple of months so I am looking forward to the rest.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thanksgiving Pics

Thanksgiving day was not the norm for us. We were at home since Clif had to work very early on Black Friday. That's what happens when you work for a retail store headquarters. We decided we should go get our Christmas tree since we would be leaving for the weekend the following afternoon and would also be travelling this coming weekend. We considered not getting a tree since we won't be around much to enjoy it, but we really wanted Ainsley to have one this year. She's so fascinated by new things.

Well no Christmas tree lot was open on Thanksgiving day...don't really blame them. BUT, Walmart was open. I have to say, I'm not a huge fan of Walmart, but on Thanksgiving day, with no one there, it actually wasn't too bad. So we got a tree from Walmart. This is pretty much the Charlie Brown Christmas tree. It is very small and very thin, but oh well, it's something simple for this busy year. Next year we hope to spend the holidays at home, so we are not travelling all over the place and we can start to create our own traditions with Ainsley.

We spent Thanksgiving with Clif's family. It was a busy weekend, but we had a lot of fun. We were very tired after working, playing and travelling all weekend long. However, it was nice to spend time with Clif's family.

Ainsley really enjoyed herself at Nanny and Poppa's. And now she is saying Nanny and Poppa pretty consistently. We are working on some other names, but really the repetitive ones are the easiest. She can also say sister, but that is about the extent of it.

So Ainsley has an amazing connection with my father in-law - Poppa. She just completely adores him and can't get enough of him. She is often very shy around new people at first. That fades after about 20 minutes...but she loves her Poppa. Now, after spending a few days with him reading to her and playing with her she'll just look at us and say "Poppa?" It actually comes out a little more like "Bop-pa." It's so cute the way she says it. It always makes me smile.

Ainsley enjoyed her first Thanksgiving dinner as well. Last year doesn't count because she was still on breast milk and just starting cereal. She didn't get any of the good stuff. The girl does not like poultry though. We can never get her to eat chicken, and she would not eat the turkey. She did, however, love the sweet potato, stuffing and corn casserole. The child loves fruits and veggies. Even tonight for dinner, she just ate 2 bowls of peaches! I guess that's better than junk food...not that she wouldn't eat candy and sweets all day if I let her.

Well, I'm going to bed now. We are leaving tomorrow afternoon to go visit Cameron, Amanda and Caitlyn in Connecticut. Ainsley is taking her first plane ride. I guess we'll see how that goes. Luckily it is a short flight. Ainsley is going to meet her Great Nanny and Great Gramps and all of her aunts and uncles and cousins on my mother in-law's side of the family. Ainsley is also going to get to see New York City for the first time...and at such a young age. I was 27 before I made it there. Plus we are going to help Uncle Cameron pick out his Christmas tree. It should be a fun and busy weekend. I will have lots of pictures to share next week.
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