Way back in November my good friend, Perkins, gave us (*GAVE* US) a laptop. Isn't that amazing?! She'd gotten a new one while she was still in school, and this one was just sitting in her car. It works perfectly, except for the fact that it has to be plugged in. But who cares?!? It's still a computer!!! So we are back to being a family with a computer, which in some ways is very convenient. We still don't have internet yet, but it's so handy to be able to type stuff up and go to a coffee shop or something and just click "send" or whatever. I'm very happy to have it!
Our Christmas was very fabulous. Very. Fabulous. We spent Christmas Eve with my side of the family, as we usually do, and we ate a lot of good food and there were many extended relatives and friends joining in the celebration as well. I was lucky enough to recieve a Kindle Fire (whoopee!) while Martin was the proud recipient of a shotgun (of course) and the girls were generously given Bitty Babies, which were, by far, their favorite gifts of the entire holiday. The dolls were immediately named. Greta's is Baby Pajamas and Anja's is Balloon Rose. Very nice. And suddenly these dolls might as well be the only dolls they have! It's really funny. And cute.
We went to the Children's Mass on Christmas Eve, which, sadly, was not our best Mass. We sat in the very back pew, the girls were sleepy and hungry and not wanting to be there AT ALL. It was hot and stuffy and we couldn't hear anything and even when they went up to the manger scene for the homily, which I thought they'd be really excited about, they evidently thought they were going to get INTO the manger scene, because just being near and listening to Father's homily was not cool enough for them. However, the tradition of taking a piece of straw from the nativity made them both very happy. For about two minutes.
On Christmas Eve that same good friend of ours, Perkins, spent the night and got to share with us the magic of Christmas morning with kids. SO FUN. All the family stopped by throughout the day, and after the morning time, when we were all by ourselves again, we had the most delightful, lazy, quiet afternoon and evening. I made Traditional Austrian Cheese Soup (thanks, Joannie!) and it was a hit with everyone. It was such a happy day.
The next day (Boxing Day) we gathered with Martin's side of the family to celebrate. Another very fabulous day and I had made enough soup to take up the leftovers! One of my favorite things was a shirt from my sister-in-law that says I [heart] npr. LOVE IT! And it fits perfectly, which is also very awesome.
I'm having a hard time uploading my pictures onto the blog on this computer. In fact, I'm having a hard time even FINDING the pictures.... I know they're on here somewhere...... I'll get my hands on them eventually.
And when I do, I will post them.
Oh, New Years! Also, surprisingly fun! Perkins (she keeps coming up, doesn't she?) treated us to dinner at Olive Garden along with our friend Joel. So fun! Afterward I went on to play down at a shop on Main Street, where we thought the other three could come along (my dad even came down to sit with the sleeping girlies so Martin could come out with us) but it ended up having an enormous cover charge, so too bad for them. They went for beers at a cute little pub-style bar and were back at our place by 11:00. (Well, except for Joel, whose appetizer of mussels didn't agree with him. I'm glad I didn't eat any!) So at midnight, Perkins, Martin and I clinked our beverage glasses of coffee, orange juice and beer in our cozy living room and listened to the fireworks. Good thing our super loud neighbor came out on his porch and shouted "Happy New Year" or, gosh, we would've missed the big moment.
That night Greta and Martin both came down with the beginnings of an icky cough/cold that lingered on for days. Bleh. They seem to be knocking it now though, at last. Greta was croupy for a couple of nights--never a good things with her. Funny, with Anja, she wakes up croupy and you tell her what's up and she calmly goes along with sticking her head in the freezer and sitting in the steamy bathroom. With Greta, she gets so overwhelmed she just gets more and more worked up until one night the LAST time she had croup, back in November, I ended up taking her to the emergency room because I couldn't get her calmed down enough to breathe! This time around I decided it would be better to sleep with the window open for an hour at a time throughout the night than to wake her up to go through the usual croup routine. It worked! The first night we did sit in front of the open window together, but I never had to take her out of the bedroom, which I think is what freaked her out in the first place that night we went to the ER.
Anyway. Enough of the boring stuff. Monday is a big day! It's Ultrasound Day! I am looking forward to this ultrasound a lot. I want to find out the gender this time... I've never wanted to so much before! But Martin is still a staunch believer in the surprise-at-the-moment-of-birth-gender-discovery. Which I am too, when it actually happens! But right now I have this great opportunity to find out whether this little being who is making my jeans too tight and who makes me feel like I have to empty my bladder every eight minutes is a little boy baby or a little girl baby. I could be able to say "Elka, stop stepping on my bladder!" or, "Francis! What are you doing in there?!?" Imagine! And I am a naturally curious person, too, which doesn't help. *sigh* so on the one hand, Monday will likely be a hard day for me, but also an exciting one since we get to see arms and legs and nose and eye sockets, etc. The girls and Martin are coming along this time, and Anja is especially excited. I've shown her pictures from HER ultrasound so I think she knows not to expect a photographic image of the baby.
I hope so, anyway!
Tomorrow. Epiphany. Down come the Christmas decorations. Sadness. I'm afraid Anja will cry a lot when we take everything down and put it all back into it's big box and stuff it back into the closet, but we're going to keep the lights and garland up over our big doorway, so hopefully that will be cheery enough for her. And I don't suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, (I LOVE WINTER) but it still might do something to keep us smiling until the crocuses come up.
I'm lucky to have this laptop!