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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Recent Events

It's been a while since I've updated what we've been up to, so this will be a long one.

Starting with Thanksgiving, the four of us drove out to my hometown of Solon, Ohio. We spent the holiday with my parents, my brother Ryan, and his girlfriend Allison. We had a nice dinner out with my grandfather and aunt, did a little Black Friday shopping, and went to the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. It was a short trip, especially because we drove there. We did both legs of the trip all in one day, and the kids held up surprisingly well. I was worried considering how mobile Max has become, but he was a very patient little guy. The kids got lots of gifts, and enjoyed spending time with their grandparents. A nice holiday break.

I came back to a lot of chaos at work. Everyone was hoping for a quiet December, but it has definitely been the opposite. It's good to be busy - I just wish our lives at home could have been a little quieter! But that is almost never the case.

Hannah has been very busy with 4 birthday parties so far this month, plus another 3 more scheduled soon (including her own). Her class is supposed to be the oldest kids in the program, so the birthdays are front-loaded, and Hannah's is actually the last in the class. Hannah comes home each day with tons of new art projects, and her writing has really progressed. She also had her Toe Tappers "peek week" class this week, as well as finally having her turn as Shabbat Helper. But the most exciting development was my discovery of her "shark" teeth: the adult teeth poking through the gum behind the baby teeth that had yet to fall out. She got a special trip to the dentist to have them pulled this week, and had her first visit from the Tooth Fairy.

Max is keeping us very busy as well, making for almost no "downtime" at home. He barely naps and wants to be on his feet at all times, preferably while also carrying a toy or two. While he walks quite well, he's not good at looking down for obstacles, and ends up tripping a lot. We often have to put him in his pack-n-play, or "baby jail," since we can't leave him unattended for a moment. We're also seeing cracks in his constant happy state, as he does not like being told "no" and is struggling to learn how not to hit...he is definitely different than Hannah was at this age! But Max is still the happiest baby I have ever seen, always waking up with a smile, loves clapping his hands, loves playing with drums and making a huge mess at every meal.

The next couple of weeks will be even busier for us. Hanukkah starts tomorrow night, and we'll be having our second (hopefully) annual night with Julie and Mike. (Side note on Hanukkah: Economic crisis-shmisis. These kids are going to make out very well!) We'll also be attending Hanukkah parties at our synagogue and Marc's parents temple in Hartford, plus a family party at Marc's parent's house next Sunday. The kids will be having their first joint installment of "Camp Grandma" for a couple of days this week, and it's going to be VERY odd having them both gone! Marc and I will meet up with them in Hartford next weekend, and then we'll both get some time off around New Year's since Max's daycare is closed.

It is hard to believe that 2008 is almost at an end. We'll be celebrating Max's 1st birthday and ringing in 2009 with family in Hartford, and then having Hannah's 5th birthday party a couple of days later. 2008 has been a tough year for me, and in a lot of ways I'll be happy to put it behind me. But there was also a lot of good things that happened, and I know 2009 holds a lot more in store.

Wishing you all of the best things in this special time of year: time with friends and family, time to take care of yourself, good fun and good food, and lots of busyness. Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year. And keep remembering: everything will be fine in 2009!

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