Sunday, July 31, 2011

When the Livin is Easy...

We've had a busy couple weeks... so much so that I'll use this as my excuse as to why once again I am behind on updates. Yup! That works. Busy!

I LOVE summer. The weather has been divine: hot, hot and more hot. The perfect weather for days at the pool. My daughter the fish seems to have picked up my love for summer as well. She could live in the pool, so I guess that would lend itself to a passion for the heat! It's not that I don't like fall, spring and winter; I really enjoy living where we have 4 distinct seasons. I am not sure that I could have it any other way. Life without a white Christmas? I think NOT!

So other than hanging out at the pool, we've enjoyed Saturday mornings at the library for story time, grilling out and now the onslaught of fabulous fresh fruits and veggies that have started pouring into the Farmers Market. Summer life is GOOD!

July was a busy month - specifically for Alex and mama. Alex got his 2nd haircut, applied for and received his social security number, opened a bank account and got MORE vaccinations. We also took his Russian Birth Certificate and Adoption Certificate to the County Courthouse and filed a "Delayed Registration of Foreign Birth". This is Michigan's version of re-adoption, in a way. Translation: After a 15 minute court appearance with a very nice judge (the same that did Tatiana's!) on his FINAL day of work before retirement, we have the paperwork to send to the state to get his US Birth Certificate. Necessary? Not 100%... however, when you show people a Russian Birth Certificate they tend to look at you like you have 5 heads. This will make things like Little League and school registration a little easier. Additionally, if it's ever lost... I don't have to wonder how I'll get back to St. Petersburg, Russia to replace it.

The last step will be to apply for his US Passport. Does an almost 2 year old need a US Passport right now? When you live 30 minutes from Canada -- pretty much! Plus... it WILL be necessary when we go on our CRUISE next spring from Tampa to Cozumel! You read that right! Mama and the two kidlets will be cruising next spring! We're going with my friend Yvonne and her two kids, Rhonda and possibly Rhonda's daughter and ANYONE else that wants to cruise with us! We got a GREAT deal for the week after Easter (Thursday - Monday) on a Jr Suite on Carnival - who is known for their kids club. My friend Sara's daughter ranks her cruise HIGHER on the vacation scale than Disney. Seriously! So a cruising we will go!

Tomorrow is Gramma Darlin's Birthday. If you ask Tatiana, she'll tell you how old Gramma is -- because she'll ask ANYONE she meets, "how old are you?". It's her question of the past few months - replacing, "What's your name". This question came to a slow when we started discussing not talking to strangers. However, the challenge now is that she'll announce to someone, "You're a stranger". Makes for interesting conversation in the grocery line... let me tell you.

That wraps up our July. Now for the part you've been waiting for... pictures!!

Waiting to go to court for "Delayed Registration of Foreign Birth"
Tatiana came up with this outfit all by herself... we call it Cinderella Easter Bunny
Guess who is 22 months now? Yup! Alex!
Ashley, Riley & Tatiana at the Lexington, MI Harbor
When the tub is too scary... the sink might work!
Music in the Park: Ashley and Tatiana waiting for the ABBA Tribute band
Little Miss Fish - in the pool as usual!
Alex's first cake -- Gramma's birthday cake!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Like Grandfather.... Like Grandson?

I shared this recently on facebook... on the left (obviously) is Alex and on the right is my dad. See any resemblance?

Friday, July 8, 2011

First Fourth & Fabulous Fun

As usual, I am way behind in posting. And as usual, I have written and rewritten this post 10 times in my head. In my head, I am much more eloquent, by the way.

We had a FABULOUS first Fourth of July for Alex. Technically, I prefer the words "Independence Day", but it was much more fun sounding with a bunch of "f's". I LOVE Independence Day. Next to Christmas, it's one of my favorite holidays. There's SO much to do! The trouble with Independence Day is that there is TOO much to do. We had to pass up a couple of invites that I would have liked to have participated in, but alas there is only so much time in the day. Additionally, I just wasn't ready for the full on road trip with Alex. Even though it seems like he's been here forever, yesterday was only the marking of the end of month #2. Hard to believe!

We: watched a great parade, swam a ton in the pool, watched some nice fireworks, grilled steaks on the grill, played with cousins and friends and generally wore ourselves out. Alex made HUGE strides at the pool this weekend, Gramma Darlin got him to sit by the side and splash his feet around without crying!

Post Independence Day, I seem to have caught a lovely summer cold/sinus troubles. I woke up Tuesday morning feeling literally like a truck ran over me. M-I-S-E-R-A-B-L-E. Thankfully Alex and Tati seem to be avoiding mama's germ path.

Also, like many of you, I have been following the Casey Anthony trial, closely. I have always been fascinated by "true crime" and the "whodunits". However, this case hit a little closer to home. Three years ago, when little Caylee Anthony went missing and the story first unfolded into the press, I was waiting for Tatiana to come home. It was so hard for me to watch, knowing I was fighting to bring this beautiful girl home from the other side of the world - and here this girl couldn't even report her daughter missing. I am horrified and deeply saddened by this week's outcome. But enough of that...

On to the picture parade... and yes, before you say it: they have WAY too many "Red, White and Blue" outfits. But when you have two non American born citizens, can you ever have too many celebration outfits?

Alex @ his first July 4th Parade...
Two American Citizens, sister & brother
Reading with her "Tag Jr" reader...
Gramma and Grampa sent me this outfit...
Even my cup is Red & Blue, mom! Enough!
Riley and Tati jumping into the pool - two fishy cousins...
Alex's preferred pool position... relaxing in the shade
Queen of the swings
Suddenly this little boy looks like he's getting big!