Monday, December 31, 2007

The Christmas that almost wasn't.....

Since I've been in a bah-humbug mood all season, I had yet to wrap the first gift when my family showed up on Christmas Eve for our celebration. My mother lives in C, along with my brother and his family, and C is about 1 1/2 hours from my house. My mother's house, in particular, is about 1 hour 40 minutes or so from my house. We invited mom to stay with us the week of Christmas as we certainly didn't want her to be alone this year. So after supper, I tell my brother I need a few minutes to wrap some gifts before we start the gift exchange. They tend to Maya while I disappear upstairs for about 15 minutes. I came back downstairs and tell my mom that I cannot find Maya's gift from her, and I wanted Maya to open it while my family was here. I looked several more times that evening and really get worried, as there are two other Santa gifts that I got along with the gift from my mom. I had other things at home to give her, but these were 3 of her main items, and I was to the point of tears when I still couldn't find them around 8:00 that evening. I even left to see if I could find ANY store still open that late. Walgreen's was the ONLY store open, and they were packed, and all the toys were quite picked over, so no luck there. So I go home and try to make do with the pitiful offering of stocking stuffers and a few other measly gifts for Maya, all while fighting the tears.

Finally, around 10:00, it hits me ... I remember where the gifts are. I bought them when in C visiting mom earlier in the month, and I remembered putting them in HER closet to hide them from Maya. Oy! I call my brother, who is back home by this time and ask him to ride out to mom's house (only about 3 miles for him) and see if they are still in her closet. Sure enough, there they are! So I tell Frank I am on my way down, as I cannot STAND not getting them for Maya to have Christmas morning.

My nephew meets me in CL, which is about 40 minutes from mom's, so it saves me a good amount of time. But I still do not get back home until 1:00 a.m. Chrismtas morning with the gifts. I put them out and head on to bed, a happy Mama! I do realize that Christmas is not all about the gifts, and that Maya would not have had a clue if they had not been found, and she would still have been ecstatic to have the few other things we had for her. So this trip was really more for me than for her. But I truly would have been devastated. Christmas was saved .....

This gift was not in Columbia, so we still had her big item at home. But I wasn't about to go outside at 6:30 a.m. when Maya woke up to find this Santa gift ... we waited until E's mom was able to come by, and she "found" it outside from Santa!

And this face was definitely worth the drive to pick up the Cabbage Patch doll!

These are from Christmas Eve with my family.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

...for Sarah

Ok, Sarah, your Christmas is now complete! Here's the lastest pictures we received of our darling Maria, who should be coming home in January, 2008! I believe these were taken in September at 6 months old.

And here's a recent one of Maya. This is the picture we used in our Christmas cards this year:

I'm trying hard to get out of the 'bah, humbug' spirit I've been in this month. I think it's getting better. I know I'm excited that my mom will be coming tomorrow to stay with us for a week or so. She was supposed to come yesterday, but she got sick and had a fever and didn't want to expose Maya to anything. But the fever is gone and she just has the cold symptoms left, so I insisted she come stay here anyway so we can keep an eye on her and make sure she is taken care of. We've all battled a recurrring bug that has been floating around our house since Thanksgiving, and have all just completed our rounds with antibiotics, so I think we're safe from mom's bug.

I am excited about Omi (my mom) and Gran (E's mom) both being here Christmas morning to see Maya and her Santa toys. Gran drove over last year on Christmas morning, and I'm sure she'll do the same this year. I have waited a long, long time to be a mom, and I cannot wait to see my little girl's face light up when she gets up on Christmas morning! I will make my usual Chrismtas morning casserole and have the coffee pot brewing. Then we'll all hang out in our jammies until almost noon, when it will be time to get ready to go visit E's family for our Christmas celebration with them. My family will all be coming up to my house tomorrow to celebrate with us and mom. So I think I'm starting to get over my doldrums for the moment.

We wish you all peace, love, and joy this holiday season, and here's to an awesome 2008!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Maria is coming home soon!

We got a call Saturday from our agency, and Maria should be coming home in January! woohoo! Maya is finally going to be a big sister!!!

We got out of PGN on Friday, which is actually about a week earlier than I had predicted. We were kicked out around Oct 18 and resubmitted the next day, but I was sure it would take at least another 8 weeks before we got out. I'm so glad to say it ain't so!

We still have to wait for the reissued birth certificate, the 2nd dna test and results, and our appointment date to appear at the US embassy in Guatemala, but at least an end is finally in sight! So Maria will be 10 months old when we bring her home. Maya was 9 months old, and I must say, it is a wonderful age.

I was just telling E tonight that it's hard to remember Maya being so small when we got her. She was running around the living room between daddy and the orange and her toys and mommy. Everyone is so surprised at how well she speaks now. She will talk up a storm if you have time to listen, so we make time!

We went to see Omi Saturday and took Maya to see the Christmas lights at the zoo. Traffic was horrendous, and while I'm on the subject, let me just express my complete displeasure with the extremely rude, boorish and completely inane drivers who think it is perfectly ok for some of us to sit in traffic over 1/2 an hour to take a certain zoo exit while they zoom up the left lane and weasel their way into the front of the traffic line. I wish I could remember the NC license tag number I tried to memorize ... the one that so rudely pushed his way into line even though we were trying not to let him in. I'm all for being curteous and letting people get in front of me, but I'm not exaggerating when I say we were in traffic for more than 1/2an hour to go about 1/2 a mile. But it was worth every second of the traffic agony to see the big smile on Maya's face when she saw the elephants!

One of her favorite movies is Jungle Book, and we practice our marching with the elephant military patrol. She also still loves Garfield and Cinderella. I heard from a little birdie that she will be getting Cinderella III from some of her favorite relatives who happen to live in Nebraska.

We went to a neighborhood Christmas party last night. It was at our friend's house, and their whole neighborhood has a Luminary Night each year on the 2nd Sunday in December. It gets larger each year, and we have so much fun taking a hay ride around the neighborhood, eating snacks at host houses, and meeting with our friends each year. Maya is still afraid of Santa, who she calls "Ho Ho". She will be chattering away and if you ask her if she wants to go see Ho Ho, she'll freeze up and say "No!" very quickly. I hope she gets over her fear soon .. I can't wait to get pictures of her in Santa's lap!

E, Maya and I all wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!