Friday, October 31, 2008

Burkholder Family Visit

Our friends Chris and Isabelle Burkholder visited us this week with their daughters, Julia and Chloe. Julia is a little younger than Benjamin and Chloe is a little older than Noah. Benjamin had a great time playing with Julia and was very sad to see her go on Wednesday.

We went to see the chateau de Pierrefonds with them while they were here.

I don't think you can even tell in this picture that Benjamin was crabby and Frederic had to tickle him to get him to smile.
(Noah was there too, he was in the stroller. See, proof!)

And now we are trying to get our ducks in a row for our trip home in 2 short weeks! (This is the reason for the lack of blog posts recently, too.)

Some things that have been keeping us busy besides work and little boys: Frederic's cousins are coming for dinner tomorrow night, and my former coworker is coming for the weekend next week. Then we leave a few days after that for the US for 3 1/2 weeks.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

It's been a long couple of weeks.

This is what Noah did while waiting for the water heater to be installed. Benjamin liked to "read" like this at that age also.

I'm not a big seafood fan anyway, but this type of presentation really doesn't help me want to get over that aversion. Ick. I guess I have some irrational aversion to my food looking at me.
Benjamin has decided he's not going to let Noah get away with all the fun of crawling and is joining in.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A taste of home

My friend Emiley and her daughter Isabel came from Germany to visit us this weekend. And she brought us lots of

Frederic is very happy! We have only found Dr Pepper in a town near the condo lately and it's something like a euro a can (about $1.36 at the current exchange rate) so we usually don't indulge.

In return, I made her (and myself, since I didn't get one for my birthday) a birthday cake. Those are M&Ms on top, and one candle for me and one for her - we thought 62 candles for our combined age would be a fire hazard.

We made playdoh one afternoon for the kids. Benjamin hadn't ever played with playdoh before and he liked it, but didn't really understand that he could do anything other than press the cookie cutters and things into it.

We went to Ikea on Sunday after church. The rest of France was also there, so it was hot & crowded inside the store, but we picked up a few things that had been on our shopping list for a while, like another bookcase for our living room and a light fixture for our dining room (what?! We've only been in the house for 2 years, you didn't expect us to have light fixtures in all the rooms yet, did you?!).

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

He's on the move!

At 7 months, Noah has started crawling!

He did not learn this from his big brother, who never did crawl, but who doesn't seem to mind being on his tummy these days.

We also started Noah on solids (again) - we tried a month ago but he didn't care much for it or seem very ready, so we stopped. Now he is at the point where he is drooling over our food, and is much more excited about his. Right now he is still on cereal and peaches, and soon we'll branch out to other things.

And happy 8th anniversary to us today!

No dinner out since we have no babysitters or family around, but maybe we'll get a chance when we're home in November. We did have a nice, kid-free, Chinese dinner together once the boys were in bed.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Last of the tomato harvest

It's just too cold here already and our tomatoes are about to freeze outside, so Frederic gathered up what was left on Friday.

Those that have started to ripen, he's wrapped in newspaper and put in the laundry room in the hopes that they'll finish ripening, and we will most likely freeze them. Those that are very green will become fried green tomatoes or tomato pickles. I can't imagine that we'll need to buy pickles for at least a couple of years, with all the jars of green tomato pickles we have already!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Today in our house

It's really a wood-burning stove, and we use it to heat our house in the winter to try and keep our electric bills down. Otherwise we have electric radiators. We've had a fire going almost every day for a couple of weeks already, and have turned on the electric radiators in the boys' rooms and my office. Brrr!

It's still hard to get a picture of Benjamin since he's more interested in seeing what goes on on the other side of the camera.

He is still very excited about the trip home and will list off all the relatives he is going to see at the slightest encouragement. For some reason he likes to jump while he goes through the names.

And Noah is quite happy when he gets to go in his walker, but we have to keep a very close eye on him because of the aforementioned fireplace. He is definitely a thumb/finger-sucker, which Benjamin never was. He'll take a pacifier too, but prefers his hands.

In other news, the Montpellier thing is back up in the air (KNEW I shouldn't have mentioned it!!). It's a long story but to make it much shorter, someone's employer royally screwed up, and I'll give you a hint, it wasn't mine. So we're waiting to see what happens next, and don't know when we will know. I'll let you know when we know anything definite again about that!

Noah is a much, much bigger fan of "tummy time" than Benjamin ever was (just amazing how different two brothers can be, isn't it?). He doesn't scream bloody murder at me when I leave him like that for a while. He has started to get up on his knees! That is a new and exciting thing for us because Benjamin never did crawl so it's funny to us to see Noah trying to.

He is trying out his pack-n-play in my office here; I need him to be "contained" somewhere while I work so he tends to alternate between this and his swing.