Friday, August 28, 2009

Longest Post Ever (go grab a snack!)

So instead of ignoring a lot of the pictures we took in the beginning of the month before we left for the States, I decided to just make a gigantic August post of everything. I'll start out with just some random pictures from around the apartment and Cochabamba. We were here for Seis de Augusto, which is Bolivia's independence day and a big deal around here. There were tons of parades and festivals and everything shut down to celebrate. We were brave and packed Jude into the stroller (the sidewalks are rough here) and walked downtown to check things out. We had lunch and coffee and Jude had a great time. I think he amused a lot of the Bolivians by waving his flag wildly, snacks and sunglasses in tow. We also took a few pictures on a walk one evening down from the orphanage. It's on a hill and the walk down is just gorgeous. August is known as the windy month here, and man is it windy! There have been a few times we've had to duck into stores to get out of the crazy dust storms...Jude's had to resort to carrying rocks in his pockets ;) Kidding. We took him to buy a remote control car a few weeks ago and one such wind "storm" erupted, then it got really dark and cloudy but never actually rained, and when I looked out the window there was a rainbow! Here are more pictures from the first week of August...

Fast forward to our trip home. Despite going home for Gram's funeral, we had a nice time visiting with family and friends. That barfing episode of Jude's the night before we left wasn't "nothing" like I had originally dismissed it was a nightmare of a virus that spread to me, and subsequently to lots of people we saw:( Let's just say I spent a lot of time in the bathroom for various started on the plane. Jude had diarrhea on my lap 4 times on the international flight and prissed into customs in Miami wearing a pooped-on shirt and a towel toga. After the virus passed (or at least, after it moved along to terrorize our friends!) things started looking up. We took Jude to his pediatrician at home and he is free and clear of parasites, so the antibiotics worked:) We spent time going through Grammy's apartment and moving her things into storage, and tying up some loose ends. Both her funeral and memorial service were beautiful, and we sure will miss her. She left a great legacy for her family though, and will always have the utmost admiration and love from so many.
Jude got to have some serious play time with his cousins and his "guy friends" Thomas and Creighton. It was nice to watch them play together now that they toddle around, since I've often wished I could see that since they all started walking:)

I got to have lunch with my friend Emmalee one afternoon while Jude went along to Traders Point Creamery and hang out with the cows! Emmalee got married Aug. 8 and she asked me to be a bridesmaid, which unfortunately I wasn't able to do once we moved to Bolivia. I was so glad she was back from her honeymoon so we could get together and catch up properly. Skype just isn't the same sometimes:(

He also got to play with his cousins, which is really important to Ted and I. They're all so close in age--on both sides of the family--and I really treasure the fact they will grow up alongside each other and hopefully remain close forever. It's too bad he missed meeting his newest cousin, Jace, who was born on Wednesday! Congrats to the Orbison family, we can't wait to see his sweet face (but I guess we'll have to). Below are pictures of Jude with Annabel (*happy 2nd birthday!!*) and Cadalyn, zoned out in front of a movie, playing at the park, and goofing around:)

After Indy, we went back to Nashville for a couple days to see MY fam for a bit. We ran a few errands downtown for our neverending visa issues (we needed extra birth/marriage certificate copies) and then spent the rest of the day grilling out and relaxing by the pool. (Sadly, this was only the second time we'd been to a pool all summer, and the first was the same pool right before we moved!) I guess we'll make it up during Cochabamba summer. Ted had some guy time with my dad and brother-in-law and Memaw watched Jude one night so I could have coffee with Blair.

We flew to Miami first. We learned last time that traveling with a little one requires extra days, because they just can't handle the long travel time without breaking it up a little. It was a good decision. Blair hooked us up in a Marriott and we rented a car for the day, and spent the day at South Beach. It was so hot and humid it felt like we were standing behind a car exhaust all day, so we hit the beach. Jude is not a big bathtub player so I wondered if he would be excited about the ocean, and he went nuts! He LOVED the sand, LOVED the ocean, and LOVED looking at all the people! He kept scuttling like a crab toward the water and we'd have to swoop him up, but he seriously had a ball. I have more cute pictures, but South Beach has some pretty lax rules about swimming attire, and there are some rather inappropriate images in the background of a few of them! We had lunch on Ocean Dr. and took a long walk, then found an Emeril's restaurant and picked up banana cream pie to go, changed and ate in the car, and took an all-night flight to Bolivia. Not fun traveling 14 hours with sand in your undies!

It was a whirlwind trip to say the least, but we're glad we went. I got a few American "fixes" I was missing--some sports, some food, but mostly faces. We wrung (is that the correct word?) every drop of energy and time we had out, and absolutely crashed as soon as we got back to our apartment. Jude makes things interesting...nothing is easy with a tiny person along...there were probably 3 nights Jude got less than 6 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period, hours spent chasing him around airports, meals concocted from gas station food, body fluids being cleaned in cars and planes, hosing off sandy toddler feet in Starbucks bathrooms....yeesh! And we want more kids, go figure:) We LOVED seeing you all and for those we missed, we are sorry! It feels good to be back in Cochabamba though, and back to life as usual. Jude slept like an angel last night and happily screeched around the apartment today, discovering new nooks and crannies he can explore with his newfound walking ability:)
Thanks for all the prayers, hugs, and hospitality the past few weeks.


Beth said...

I loooved the long post! Those pictures of little Hammy at the beach are beyond adorable! We miss you guys and are so thankful we got to see you all. xoxo

The Hennessees said...

It was so great to see you guys! We are so glad you are back safely in Bolivia. Loved the pics as always, especially the adorable one of all of your feet in the water, how cute! I've been to South Beach twice, what a fun yet interesting place :) Hope to talk soon, love you guys!

Emmalee said...

Loved having you home, even if it was only for one lunch. That should get me through for awhile :) Can't wait to Skype again soon. Miss you already!

Blair said...

I love the pictures of you guys at the beach, Jude is growing up so fast! Glad you guys are home safe, love you!!

Anthony, Stacey and Parker said...

Glad you made it back safe and sound! Jude is getting SO big, he is adorable! I love reading your blogs about all the fun adventures you guys are having!