We're Jason, Beth, Lee Anna, Sawyer, and Sarah Claire, a family of five living, learning, and laughing lots in Northern Africa.
We hope you can learn a little (and maybe laugh a little too) as you read about our latest adventures.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Last Few Days

Here's a little of what we've been up to: We're still waiting on our furniture, but we needed to go ahead and get rid of the patio table we've been eating on, so for the last two days we've eaten our meals at the kids' table. Tomorrow is Furniture Day, so we should get to start sitting in big-people chairs again soon.
And Sarah Claire got so excited about finally getting to be in her crib that she rolled over! I had left her lying on her back, and came back to find her on her tummy examining her crib bumper. She will soon be mobile, which is going to change things for all of us!
And tonight we had a little Halloween fun. Our Ladybug, Care Bear, and Superman were joined tonight by another friend for a little trick-or-treating fun inside our flat. They had a great time, as usual, and will be enjoying their candy for a while. It's hard to believe they've grown so much since this Halloween post last year, or this one the year before that, or this one before that.
And I just had to include a few more pics of Sarah Claire because, well, I'm her mom and this is my blog. I'm pretty sure I've never seen a little Care Bear this precious...at least not since her sister wore this outfit five years ago.

Her other new trick is putting anything and everything she gets her hands on in her mouth. She's just gained enough coordination to actually pull this off consistently, and if I remember correctly, she's going to keep practicing this one for a while. Tonight she spent quite some time trying in vain to get her mouth around the toys on the swing.

And that's what we've been up to.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Four Months

Sarah Claire wanted you all to know that even with all the chaos of moving to our new flat, we did manage to get the "Monkey Picture" taken on her four-month birthday. Here she is smiling her best little Princess smile.

And here's a close-up...

And here's what happens if you try to leave a four-month-old in a sitting-up position for more than a few minutes...
She's been sleeping on a mattress on the floor (like the rest of us) since we got to our new place, but today Lee Anna and I got her crib set up (Okay, just to clarify, Daddy actually put the crib together. We just made it cute.) Then Lee Anna entertained her with a puppet show. It was cute.

She's not rolling over yet, but she does roll way over on her side from her back. It won't be long before she makes it all the way over. She's able to reach and grab for things in front of her, and she loves to lie on her play mat and talk to the animals hanging above her. She makes the sweetest little gurgling sounds when she's happy, which is most of the time. She also learned to stick out her tongue this week. Our friend was over and noticed that when she stuck out her tongue, Sarah Claire would stick hers out, too. They did it over and over!

We're so grateful for our precious little princess. We love you , Sarah Claire!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

A New Chapter

Today is the beginning of a new chapter for our family--the Home School Chapter! Lee Anna officially began kindergarten today, and we had a great time reading and learning together. I realize it's a little late in the fall to just be starting, but we just got our books unpacked! We're counting on her to be able to catch up.

This was also the beginning of a new chapter for Sawyer--the Going-To-School-Without-Lee-Anna Chapter. This would have been really traumatic for him, I'm sure, if it weren't for the fact that one of his good friends is also at his preschool. He had a good day (at least until the last 15 minutes when his friend left!). Despite the drama at the end of the day, he said he wants to go back tomorrow, so we're grateful!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Home Sweet Home

I am happy to report that we are no longer living in a hotel, and even happier to report that our new living room no longer looks like this...

This is how it looked on Thursday, after the movers delivered all of our stored furniture and belongings---at 4 in the morning!!! My sweet husband had to leave his warm bed at 3:45 a.m. when the mover called to say they would be there in half an hour. He met them at the flat, and they unloaded everything off the truck. So this is what we found when we got there Thursday afternoon. We've had some wonderful helpers and have made much progress, but I don't have any updated pictures yet. This flat was completely unfurnished, so we've also been busily shopping for furniture in the midst of everything else. They delivered our mattresses tonight, so this will be our first night to sleep on something besides an air mattress. The other furniture we've bought should be here in about ten days.

We are exhausted, but relieved to be finally settling somewhere. Tomorrow we might even try to fix a meal here! I'll try to get back soon with more pictures.

Monday, October 12, 2009

The End Is In Sight

As much fun as we have had living in a hotel for two weeks, we are delighted to report that it is almost over! We have found a flat to live in, and we should be able to move in by the end of the week. We had hoped we might be able to move even sooner, but it's going to take a few more days. We had a very productive afternoon today finding furniture for our new home. We still have a few more big holes to fill, but things are coming together, and we are all looking forward to finally settling somewhere.

Keep checking back. Hopefully we'll have some pictures of the new place before too long...and you can find out why our friend calls it "The Barney Building."

Friday, October 09, 2009

Starting Over

Plans have changed a bit since I posted last night. We went to bed thinking we had decided on a flat, but neither of us slept well, and we both got up this morning feeling like that just isn't the right place. It's a nice flat, but not in the area we'd like to live in, so we're going to keep looking. This is an exhausting, discouraging process, so we would appreciate your prayers. Thanks!

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Back in the Swing

Well, we made it!

We are safe and sound and almost over our jet lag, six days after arriving in our desert home again. We hit the ground running this time, with lots of people to see, places to go, friends to catch up with, weddings to attend (sort of--more on that later), and oh yeah, a new flat to find.

It's been a long, exhausting week, but we think that we've found a flat! We have a few more things to check on, but hopefully we'll know in a day or two whether this place will work. We hope to be moving in early next week.

Tonight for dinner we decided to order from one of the four restaurants located underneath our hotel. Lee Anna really wanted to have a picnic, but we talked her into just eating on the coffee table instead (see photo above). We finally sat down to eat this meal around 8:45 p.m., and it wasn't even the latest dinner we've eaten this week! We are definitely getting inculturated again.

We've already had some fun "cultural" experiences this week. I'll do my best to get them posted soon.