Wednesday, December 30, 2015

The Trials of Santa Claus

Good morning,

My daughter just sent me the files for the photos that were taken of little LW for his first Christmas meeting with Santa Claus. 

I thought you might get a kick out of seeing how uncomfortable poor Santa was before BSB stepped in to take over holding LW. 

Santa looks like he might break out crying or maybe yelling.  It was obviously painful for him.  Poor guy. Not a job I would want to have.

Hope you get a chuckle out of the photo.  

Don't worry, LW was only upset for a very, very few seconds.  We snapped a shot and then mom stepped in.

LW was much happier when mom came to the rescue. You can almost hear him saying "Ah, yes. Mom!"

This last picture was taken of Hubbie (Opa) D and LW on Christmas.  Our friend KW shared an idea with us to take this picture every year and follow LW's growth. She has pictures of her son, HW from birth with his granddad. Great idea.  Thanks, KW.

Maybe next year will be a better Santa experience for LW. He obviously really enjoys his Opa and that is what really counts.

Brenda (Oma)

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Some good and some bad, always a challenge!

This has been a really strange trip.  It was almost like life did not want us to come back to the United States.

Our flight from Kuwait to Washington Dulles had strong head winds and arrived late so we missed our connection to Florida. When we finally arrived at our little condo the water in the condo was not working. The hot water heater had burned dry because the cleaning people had turned off the main water valve but not the power to the heater.

If that were not enough, the car battery was dead in our car. The coffee pot was clogged up (from humidity) and would not grind beans or perk. And, on top of all that Granddaughter ML and Father-in-law DM’s flight was canceled from Houston to Orlando.

Oh, don’t you just love those first world problems?

We planned ML’s trip from the University of Oklahoma to Florida so she and DM (from Kansas) could meet in Houston. They would travel from Houston to Florida together.

ML made straight A’s AGAIN this semester (YIPEE – we are so proud) and we are so excited to see her and hear all about her time at OU studying engineering.  There is a young man in the picture now and needless to say we have a million questions to ask her about him.  She is a pretty picky young woman so he must be really special.

United Airlines would only schedule them on a flight to leave Houston for Orlando the next day.  Fortunately Hubbie DW has some pull with United and was able to get them rerouted through Ft. Lauderdale. Strangely somehow their luggage was able to fly to Orlando without them. United delivered the luggage at 3AM that next morning.

Grandson BSJ was very successful in timing his "driving from Jacksonville" arrival to match up with our return from Ft. Lauderdale after we picked up ML and DM.  Here is ML, BSJ and Grandpa DM. It was a great reunion as they haven't all been together in quite some time. Very sadly, BSJ's mom (my daughter AJ) is recuperating from back surgery and she could not come.

Somehow it seems natural to have two grandchildren in college studying engineering. I have been surrounded by engineers my entire life.  BSJ is doing really well in school. He might be working on a cyber security project in Texas next summer.

I understand more of what ML is studying than BSJ but he loves what he is learning and is doing great in school.  He has become a very responsible young man and we are very proud of him.

I was hoping with all my “please, please, please get better” thoughts that we had reached the end of the struggles and we could settle into a nice holiday. However, on Christmas Eve I came down with some sort of stomach bug.

Before I was sick, we did get to see little LW. Of course he went right to Hubbie D and gave him a big hug and smiles.  Unfortunately he cried when I said hello. I am not worried, he will come around to know I can be fun as well.

He is so cute, he stands and pushes chairs and toys all over the room.  He loves to see things move.  Cause and effect seems to be of great interest to him.  Maybe he will be a physicist.

At the first opportunity I stocked our condo with a few push toys and I was very successful with my choices.

Here is a video of LW playing with the new truck in the condo. If you are reading this in an email, you will need to go to my blog to view the video.

Cute -- Santa is on the move.  LOL

LW enjoys his bath just like his mom did.  Hopefully we will be able to go swimming with LW while we are in Florida.
BHB, ML and I managed to bake a batch of cookies so we could keep the  Hyde cookie tradition going. Great Grandpa D insisted we make a batch and Santa needed some as well.

As expected, LW was not happy when mom placed him in Santa's lap.

MOM!  WHERE ARE YOU GOING? Don't leave me with this strange man that has facial hair the same color as my hair.

As you can imagine, Christmas morning was a lot of fun. LW kept trying to pull over the tree or open gifts for other people. Finally he settled on playing with a hairbrush given to big sister MB. For a while, it looked like LW’s favorite gift would be the hairbrush. Fortunately his mom (BHB) let it quietly disappear and he became interested in the golf clubs we gave him.

Opa D was not excited to see LW playing with a shocking pink brush. 
Fun under the tree!
Guiness had a new toy and LW was determined it was going to be his.
Yes, Golf Clubs!  Just what a boy needs. Oops, mom thinks they might be a projectile hazard. Maybe he is not quite old enough for these bigger clubs.
Here is LW and his "baby" golf clubs. Thank goodness I thought to get these smaller clubs.

D wants so badly to make sure LW plays golf.  We both love to play golf and it would be so wonderful to play with LW.  Hubbie D even asked ML if she would be interested in taking up golf. She thought it was a great idea and she is going to take lessons this summer. Now that is a foresome I can get excited about!

D gave LW the cutest book about counting that was based on golf. I could tell immediately that LW wanted to devour every word.  A golfer in the making he is for sure.

Here is a video of his mom reading the inscription written in the book by Hubbie D (Opa as he is called).  Hint - when you watch this video, be sure to look at the carpet LW is sitting on.  It is BHB's Christmas gift from Bahrain.

If you are reading this in an email, you will need to go to my blog to view the video.

Our Christmas was wonderful, filled with fun games and conversation with ML and BSJ, exciting gifts for LW, fishing with DM and terrific food with the whole family.

We are having a good time in Florida and look forward to some golf of our own after the holidays are finished.

AND . . . I have to tell you, there are a few things I am enjoying RIGHT NOW that I have missed in Bahrain. I love my garbage disposal and large dishwasher and REALLY BIG refrigerator. It is funny how I never gave those things a second thought before and now I think how nice they are every single time I use them.

REALLY -- don’t you just love those first world problems?

We have said this many times since we moved to the Middle East, Americans do not appreciate what a wonderful life they have. We are a truly blessed country.

LW is still exploring every little part of our little condo and having a great time chasing the balls and truck all over the floor.

LW is perpetual motion. He wears me out!

He stood up by one of the chairs yesterday and considered taking his first step.  However in the end, he sat down and crawled. Look out BHB; he is going to start walking at any moment!

A belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family.

I hope you have many wonderful and happy adventures in 2016.

Remember, as Helen Keller once said, “Life is a daring adventure, or it is nothing at all.”