Friday, June 18, 2010

Countdown to Haircuts

Since I set the date for the babies haircuts, I've been thinking about it a lot. Maybe a little too much.
I had a dream last night that I was getting a haircut, and since I had Anna and Alex with me (naturally) I asked the girl if she would cut their hair. “Just shave it off, it’ll be easy.” So when she started to cut Alex’s hair she was trying to be gentle but no matter what she did the plastic attachment on the clippers dug into his head and cut him! I was like WHAT THE %#@% lady! And of course he was crying and hysterical. It was really traumatic. HOLY #%@* I am a little too neurotic about the hair, don’t you think?
How could I not be? Such awesome locks as this?
I don't think Alex is looking forward to it, either.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Follow Up

OK. It's been a while. I've been busy. You get it. Here's what we've been up too since getting back from Russia:

Talking to Papa every weekend.

Enjoying the lilac tree. I love this tree.

Water table. They LOVE it.

Some knitting.

The first week's share from the CSA I registered for. We'll get a weekly pick up throughout the growing season.

Using utensils for the first time! Messy and awesome.

A new camera. My baby.

Some yarn. So pretty.

Playing outside with dirt. And yes, some dirt was eaten during this fun.

Z has been doing well, he is hanging in there. I am working with our lawyer to get everything together and get him an interview at the US Embassy in Moscow. It is not a fast process, and he is being very patient. I'll keep everyone updated on new developments.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Notes from the Motherland

Well, we made it to Russia. Just barely. I think one of the biggest things I learned about travelling with children is to do the exact oposite of your instinct. The flights were terrible. My smiling, quiet (sometimes), shy (other times), amiable children were replaced with screaming, uncooperative, fussy toddlers. Nothing worked. Nothing. Well, hold on, one thing worked: sheer exhaustion. When they did sleep, it wasn't long enough, so they were worse off when they woke up.
The layover that I thought would be beneficial? Turns out that when you connect in Heathrow you have to go through security again! Seriously, that is FUCKING BULLSHIT. England, I will never forgive you. (Sorry to my neice who sometimes reads my blog! and her mom).
AND THEN THERE WAS THE TRAIN RIDE. Wow. Anna was in complete meltdown mode the entire ride, it was broken up by brief periods of sleep, maybe 45 minutes at the most. The ride was very long. BUT, once the night passed (we boarded the train at 8:00 PM and arrived in Saratov at 12:00 PM the next day) things turned a corner and the bad mood lifted a little.
The past few days have been nicely paced, we get up and feed the babies breakfast, then head over to Z's mother's apartment to spend the day. Today we took a ride to see family in a small village not too far from the city. We ate a nice meal, but the highlight was the Russian Banya. It's a sauna, but you can also bathe. It is seperate from the house, has a small room to change your clothes and also to feed the fire, and the main room with benches, water basins, and the birch branches for theraputic 'beatings'. Awesome.
I saw that my company closed down for the weather back home. It hasn't snowed once here, but it has been FREEZING. Tomorrow the schools here will be closed for the weather, too, but not for snow, for cold weather. -25 degrees Celcius. Too cold to convert to Fahrenheit.
Scenes from the train:

From Z's mom's kitchen:

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

New Home for Baby

In case you've ever wondered what a 750 km drive during the Russian Winter can do to a minivan.
Behold: Z's Worst Nightmare

P.S. Check out the license plate. So Russian.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Countdown to Russia

We had planned to go to King of Prussia today for pictures with Santa. Since the weather didn't cooperate I had to put plan B into action and headed to the Lehigh Valley Mall. I was really sad because we were meeting friends there and I was looking forward to seeing S. and her family, but it really wasn't an option, and there's no time between now and Christmas to get it done.
The trip turned out to be a good one. The roads were pretty dicey but I took my time, hoping that not many parents wanted to hit the roads for Santa pictures. I mean, really, who would be that crazy? Exactly. My intuition panned out, there was no line, I managed to wrestle the double stroller and the babes without too many problems, and I got a nice parking spot! And it turns out that just because we happen to be 45 minutes away from Philly the price for Santa pictures is about the same. But at least for $50 I didn't have to be in the picture!
We managed to get in and out, with a stop at Starbucks where the line was longer than the line for Santa, with very little stress.
I also purchased the tickets for our trip to Russia in February. Just typing that gave me a chill. It's been below (way below) freezing there for the past week or so. I may be shopping for a long parka between now and then. Our flight leaves February 5th, returning on the 21st. I'm beside myself. Since moving and settlement on the house is behind me the stress of it all is catching up to me, and I'm not looking forward to the holidays this year. No shit, I need to see my cranky Russian.

So below is the picture from our visit with Santa. Neither one was happy, but they at least quieted down, probably because mama was jumping up and down like a maniac trying to get their attention. Not bad.

Monday, November 2, 2009


I have one major update, the house is under contract and if everything goes well it should all be settled by December 10th. Needless to say it is a relief and overwhelming at the same time. We have a lot to do.

Alex has mastered a new trick, at least halfway...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Update to Z

I talk to Z about every day, sometimes twice a day. The conversations are very short, I'm usually in the car on the way to the baby sitter in the morning or just about to go to bed. He is doing well, but missing his family very much. I hear it in his voice, but he is being strong, because we both have to be strong.
Right now he's living in a city about 2 1/2 hours southwest of Moscow, called Kaluga. He has an apartment, and will stay there if things work out. Another option is to move closer to Moscow but to a smaller city. He calls it a 'village'. I'm not sure what to think of this, but if there is a job there to keep him busy while we try to get him back here I'm fine with it. I just picture wells and cow milking and (eek!) outhouses. He would laugh at that.
The babies are keeping me very busy, and I am perfectly happy with that. I cry a little less, and it's only bad when the babies are super fussy. Then we all get into a downward spiral that only kisses and mommy's blackberry can heal.
We have had several appointments to view the house but no offers yet. The feedback has been positive so I'm comfortable that we've got it listed correctly. I just have to be patient.
The babies have graduated to their small table for meals. Occasionally I still resort to the highchair if they aren't cooperating, but it's working so far. The big kid table!