Thursday, January 1, 2015

Moving to England and more December Photos

Well, December arrived, and with it came our departure! Saying goodbyes was the worst, but once all that was done, we were ready. Well, most of us were ready. On the way to the airport, L asked over and over, "Do we really have to go to England?" Sweet guy! 

Here's a phone pic from the airport: 

We managed to wrangle all our stuff into the airport and get it all checked. We found out that our tickets would have allowed us to each check four bags + car seats and strollers. Can you imagine?! I'm glad we didn't have 16 suitcases! We hoped for the best from our kids on the flight, and they were awesome! The flight left at 10 p.m., so they were really tired by the time we took off. The flight was completely full, except there was one extra seat in each of our rows. How did we get so lucky? We let the kids lay across the seats, and M and I sat up and tried to sleep. It wasn't horrible. As I told M when we got to London, I've had worse nights' sleep as a mother! :) We breezed right through customs, but waited a while for lots of stamping at the immigration desk. Then a driver picked us up, we loaded our stuff in a van and off we rode the two and half hours or so to our new town. We were met there by our sponsor family, and they showed us our temporary apartment, took us to lunch, and walked around town with us to help us find our way around and also to keep us awake through the day! 

I have shamefully few pictures of the city. It's HARD to take my big, nice camera out with J right now. He's a runner, and I always have to be on guard. If I stop for two seconds to take a picture, he could be off, running down the street, with not a care in the world. One of these days I'll go out for a solo photo walk! haha

Most of our December (and January, and February, and March) was spent like this: 

Poor kiddos! Lots of ear infections, colds, coughs, etc. Apparently it's very common to pick up all the new-to-you bugs when you move to a new country, but I was not expecting this, and it really threw me for a loop! Now, when I'm writing this, we've been here a little over three months, and we've probably had a total of 14 days when no one was sick. It's getting old!

One very exciting thing to happen in December, was that L lost his first tooth! The dentist had mentioned it was loose in November, but it was just a teeny bit loose - hardly any wiggle to it at all. But one day, he told me, "Mom my tooth is kind of loose" and by the afternoon it was out! Credit goes to an apple and a pretzel. The apple loosened it considerably, and the pretzel finished the job.

L was so excited about the Tooth Fairy. He knows she's not real, but it doesn't really matter, because she brings MONEY! The TF couldn't actually find his tooth under the pillow, so she left him a silly note about having to climb up on his face and pry his lips open to make sure there was a missing tooth. He thought that was hilarious.

When we lived in the temporary apartment, we did a fair amount of walking and exploring. The weather was pretty mild and we lived close to the center of town, so it was nice to get out and see things, or go to the library, or just go to a cafe. I love it when J says, "Want get lunch at cafe!" On one of our rare healthy days, we walked around town and got pizza at this little restaurant (below). It was a carryout place, but they had this one little table where we ate.  

Here's a statue of Neptune in the middle of town. I think it will be a fountain in the summer.

This is the view from the back of our apartment. In December, the sun was rising at 8:00 a.m., and setting just before 4:00 p.m. It was dark! I didn't mind too much though. It felt cozy, and the boys were consistently sleeping from 8 p.m. to 8 a.m. which was awesome!

Speaking of bedtime - bedtime shenanigans with Daddy!

Here's a little view of the apartment - it was amazing. It was the old ballroom of a Georgian era townhome. So the original owners would have lived in the whole building from top to bottom, but it had since been divided into flats. We had the 2nd floor (1st floor if you're European), which used to be the ballroom. It had 12' ceilings, and the windows stretched from floor to ceiling. One of them was 8' wide, and the other was "only" 5' wide. It always felt so bright and airy, even on an overcast day. Light was one of my requests for the temporary flat, and they really delivered!

Car shopping - a frustrating experience I would rather forget, but the boys sure had fun! They especially liked this BMW convertible. Too bad it couldn't fit three car seats! :)

The ward Christmas party was lots of fun. L really liked the Christmas Crackers that are traditional here, and the Santa/Father Christmas part of the evening was nice too. No pressure to sit on a stranger's lap and tell him what you want. He just calls you up and gives you a little gift (that your parents - or in our case somebody else, because your parents completely forgot - provide).

We had an exciting Christmas Eve. I had my appointment for the 20 week ultrasound scan that day, so we got to find out that we have another little boy on the way! When she said it was a boy, I couldn't believe it! Another boy?! Three in a row?! How is this possible?! I've gotten used to the idea now! :)

Christmas pajamas on Christmas eve:

22 weeks (or so) I'm terrible at keeping track!

New Years' Eve was super fun this year - just the grown-ups and L! We played games, ate treats, and eventually turned on the Wii for bowling and ping pong. L really felt like he had arrived. He loved it.


Donna "Nina" Dively said...

I just loved this update! It sounds like your little family has settled in just fine. The apartment was beautiful! Keep these updates and pictures coming.

merathon said...

i am glad you are blogging again-- i need to get back on that train too. so fun to see a little glimpse of your life there.

three boys in a row! yes, it is possible! three girls is super fun, so i know three boys will be too!