Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Martin Christmas

I asked Nate to crush the candy canes. He took care of it. 
The following pictures are from Sam's family gathering. 

 Nate and his cousins. Only 3 missing. 

 2nd cousins

 Sam, Mary Ellen, Mervin, Marlin... all with dimples. 2 brothers gone on before.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas Season

After a bronchitis for a week and and being grouchy for another week, Olive seems extra sweet. 

I was very fortunate to get to sit beside Stuart at the live nativity last night. 
The wonder of five year olds is tough to beat. 
"Are the angels real?"
They are real people dressed like angels.
 "Can they fly?"
Not tonight.
 "Do the soldiers kill people?" 
These soldiers don't.

This is going to sound strange but buying only one kind of wrapping paper this year has simplified my life. Do not laugh! It really has. 

Ellie's teacher gave the class these neat hats. Squeezing the one (what are they called?) ear flapper makes the cat's tail go up in the air. Hilarious. 

Feeling proud of Tristan and Dorcas. We miss having them around very much. 

 Ellie's first piano recital. Bless her heart, middle C was stuck. 

 When Ellie' got back to her friends they all high fived each other.

Off to the school program. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Tuesday night we had a supper that I was not so proud of. Jokingly I said, "Children, you are not allowed to tell anyone what you had for supper tonight." I said it more for Nate's benefit than anyone else. Well I get a text from Sheri (Ellie's teacher) after school the next day asking " So what did you have for supper last night?" I asked Ellie if she told her teacher what she had for supper. As luck would have it, part of Ellie's schoolwork yesterday was, "Write down what you had for supper last night." So Ellie tells her teacher, "I'm not allowed to say what I had for supper last night" Imagine me piecing this story together, my next qustion was, "What did Sheri say?" Ellie makes a wrinkled nose kind of face, head shaking no kind of gesture, like it's the craziest thing the teacher ever heard of. She told her to just write it down. Oh man, I laughed so bad.

We had wings, pizza, and.... corn dogs. Yeah, snazzy.

 Last night Nate ran down to our elderly neighbors to make sure it is all right if we carol to them. Their daughter was there cooking and Nate took the opportunity to break the news that we are having another baby. I was really hoping they would not find out till spring. But I could see how it was easy for him to tell the daughter as she is a very cheerful person.  Anyhow... that evening after the "we wish you a merry christmas song" we are standing in their living room when Nate tells them that Blackie the cat is going to have kittens and she might have them in their sun porch since they let her in there all the time. This really backfired because the old lady said, "Now Olivia.... she is just a baby, she's only one!" and I started shaking my head at Nate from across the room, like please shut this conversation down. It was too late, everyone caught it. The elderly neighbors were horrified as I knew they would be.  Church friends thought it was hilarious. 

And I realize now that I never announced it here. We are expecting a baby and we are excited! 

We went to a concert while we were out celebrating our anniversary. We bought the tickets the morning of and all that was left was front and center. Really there was no one more front and center than we were. It was kind of embarrassing, it was not like we were huge fans and I think we were sitting with family from the cast. We overheard someone behind us say, "When I buy tickets I don't mess around" and that became our motto for the weekend. 

So we hand't really told people we were going because we ourselves didn't know we were. I get this text from a friend who had been at the earlier show and because of that was looking at the pictures on the facebook page, "SERIOUSLY?!?? Front and center?? and I didn't even know you were going! and then we were had.

 After buying these red berries I was the annoying customer that called the store and asked, "What kind of berries are they? are they poisonous?" The lady asked me if my dog ate some. No, but I have a one year old. 

 Did you know led lights that are labeled "cool" and not "warm" are very bad? 

Happy to have some Christmas decorations up. If only I felt like baking the Christmas cookies I planned to make. I asked each family member what their favorite kind is and made my list. I even bought all the supplies. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I'm craving applesauce instead of cookies. No complaints here.

 Olive and her friend Finn

Friday, December 5, 2014

Grenada 2014

 Hoping everything fits in the van.

Breakfast stop.

 Cold rain, so happy to fly south.

We drove to JFK the day before Thanksgiving. For some reason it only dawned on me a few days ahead of this that Wednesday was one of the busiest travel days of the year. To add some fear, they were calling for snow. See that awesome yellow relic of a suitcase? Full of frozen food, this makes it a pain to consider driving up the night we left super early and we were fine. Thanks to a mechanical problem and the de icing process, we sat on the plane about 3 1/2 hrs before taking off. Olive was not a good traveler on the way down. 

 First morning, exploring. 

 Nate took off into the cocoa to find treasures.

 Sleepover at Aunt Jana's house. Rachel Brown stopped by.

 Nieces. One with a broken leg. 

The homeowner replaced the beautiful natural fence with this fence. 

 On Saturday we visited a petting zoo.

Got caught in the rain.

Stuart holds an armadillo but not for long. 

 Visiting the people in the Coconut. Bernadette.


Lisa in red. 


Mr Reynold who is not feeling well and Miss Ann who does not remember us. She asked me many times, "How is Mommy and Daddy?" Who knows, maybe she did know me.

Ann and Reynold's house, she says her boys are mashing it up. Breadfruit on the tree. 

 Out for supper.

These two had a lot of fun together. 

 Miss Rose and Thaddeus live at the bottom of these steps. 
They were not home, but we peeked in the windows! 

 Angie and Bucket's house.

Passion fruit

 Sammy cooking a pot for an evening with our Laura friends. 

 Samara who just turned 15

 Sophia 3

 Monique almost 2

 Jana and I making some cabbage salad.




 Anika who would only give me her good side. 

 Kellon, Andre, Moses

 Sheila and Brody


 At Sheila and Shonda's for breakfast one morning. 

 Standing on Sheila's porch you can see Jana's house next door. The children are back and forth a lot. 


 Pastor John gave his dog to Sammy, meet Guard.

 Jana & Sammy's place. 

 After a great flight home the children are trying to stay warm during the 5 min wait on the shuttle. 

A little plug for "Park and Fly" if you drive yourself to the airport and park. We'd never go back to parking at the airport. We have used Smart Park and this time it was booked so we tried Park Plus and were just as happy. We drove into the lot stopped and they threw all of our luggage into the shuttle and we piled the children in, grabbed our backpacks and Nate handed over his keys. Then they take you to your gate and again the driver kindly moved all of our 11 suitcases. He was kind of amazed. It is so much faster than having your driver drop you at the gate and then waiting for them while they park and then take the air train to get back to the airport. They hand you a business card with their info on it and when you land in NY and get your luggage you call them and 5 minutes later they are there to pick you up. So easy. These links are for flying out of JFK or nearby airports. There are also motels that do sleep and fly and the parking is included in your room reservation.