Between extensions of my family and Ian’s family, we celebrated Christmas at least six times! Which is fine by me – the Church family will never turn down a holiday extravaganza. We ate, we sang, we peeked, we opened, we gave, and we were tired! There was a lot of traveling crammed into our last several weeks in the States. Aed was an excellent trooper and loved all the attention wherever we went.
It was my goal to get a good picture of our family for Christmas. We don’t have any great ones, and with time just marching onward, I really wanted a good picture to keep of us. The Sunday before Christmas, we were all gussied up in Christmas gear (ok, so it was mostly Aed..) so we took advantage of the nice background that our church provided and went for it!
And we got one!
I was so excited I gave a copy to everyone for Christmas :) My brother-in-law also managed to catch my very favorite, heart-melting, face of Aed’s..
Poochy lips!! Oh they were poochy and wonderful!
While we were at it, we tried to get a good shot of the three kiddos together. We were very successful – just look!
Maybe not.. But, Wes did capture Ben and Bella in all of their cuteness on a different day at home.
So we celebrated a few great Christmases and then said our goodbyes to Hope and Wes (tear) and took off for California to see what winter is like in places that aren’t snowy and freezing!
Little did we know what that eventful trip would hold..
We started off with all kinds of delays. Technical difficulties, weather, etc. There were plenty of reasons. We had a layover somewhere (Texas maybe?) and were very delayed for that flight. After being taken back and forth to and from the runway, we finally got on our way, so I decided to put Aed’s pj’s on him in hopes that he might take a nap before we got there (it was very late). No sooner had we sat down, all fresh and ready for a nap, then Aed up and puked all over us. All over us, the seat, the wall of the plane.. It was more than I would have ever imagined was possible of coming out of a tyke his size. Not to mention the fact that he gave no clues prior that he was feeling off in any way.
After we got over the initial shock of what had just happened, we kindly asked the man next to us if we could get out to go to the lavatory and explained what had happened (trying to hint that we would not be offended in any way if he wanted to change seats). Ian heroically carried our pukey, screaming child back to the tiny lavoratorial box (yes, I’m pretty sure that’s not a word) where we calmed Aed down, changed his clothes, and attempted to wipe ourselves off as best we could. Then we stood there for about 25 minutes while the kind and thoughtful flight attendants continued to serve drinks and food instead of letting us back to our seats.
When we finally got back to sit down, we found that the man we were sitting next to had been unable to change seats because the woman in front of us did not want to give up one of her three (!) seats. We apologized and proceeded to try to wipe the puke off the seat and side of the plane. And, we did the only thing we could.. We sat in puke for the next three hours.
It was ghetto fabulous.
We finally arrived very, very late at night, got to our abode, got Aed really cleaned up and in bed, and proceeded to collapse. But, when you can eat breakfast outside with a view like this at the end of December..
who can really complain?
I got sick on Monday evening, followed by Ian, and pretty much everyone else we came in contact with, but it was wonderful to be back in California after over three years since the last time we had been there – especially at Christmastime!
One day we were there, Ian, GG (great-grandma Marge), and Aed ventured over to a garden on Pepperdine’s campus. Aed loved the little streams running through it. Needless to say, he came back home not wearing any pants :)
After we got back from California, we spent our last two weeks driving hither and thither to see all kinds of people and do all kinds of things (not to mention stuff our faces with as much Mexican and Thai food as possible)! It was a very busy few weeks and the last thing we wanted to do at the end of it was fly back across the ocean. Aed enjoyed some one-on-one time with Nena and Papaw when we were at my parents’, as well as other aspects of their house.. Like the bathtub.
Ian and I were down at one end of the hallway working on packing or something, and when Ian went hunting for our quiet child, that is what he found! Aed had crawled into the tub by himself to play with the toys :)
Aed and Daddy had lots of special play time since Daddy took a break from working over the holidays!
And, Aed’s adorable monster towel! It matches his cousin Ben’s and is the cutest thing ever!
Lastly, I leave you with an airport picture..
We saw these in the airports everywhere we went, and thoroughly enjoyed seeing probably the only place our son’s name will ever be on a commercially made item.
So we are home and we are doing great. Getting back into the swing of working and considering what this year will hold for us. We are so thankful for everyone who was so very, very generous and hospitable to us while we were in the States. We love love love being with our families and friends over yonder, and are so grateful that we had some extra time to enjoy them this year. If we missed you, I guarantee we are sorry! Despite the length of time we were there, we had a lot going on and hope to catch you next time we are back.. Or you know, you could come see us :)
Right now we are in limbo waiting to see what kind of opportunities for jobs may arise in the next few months, and Aed and I are working hard to be Daddy’s cheerleaders (we make an awesome pyramid) as he works to finish his PhD. We are so proud of him! We appreciate your prayers and thoughts for us as we walk the seemingly never-ending road of ‘what’s next?’ Thank you! (and of course, we will keep you updated :)