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The Kat-a-blog

Thoughts, daily observations, and general stuff about
Kathleen, our family, and parenting.
Kaz will blog in GRAY, Doug will blog in PURPLE

August 2013
25 Aug   We just finished a 'Girls Trip' to Myrtle Beach to visit my parents.  Mom had back surgery earlier this Summer and I wanted to go see her, especially because her health leading up to the surgery was so poor and full of pain that they had not been to visit us and it was about 2 years since we'd gotten together.  Doug had used up his vacation time when we camped in NH in July, so he had to stay and work.  The 8 hour drive wasn't fun with one driver, but all in all it went well and we hit almost no traffic, which was really really nice.
We stayed in a very cool hotel, which was actually more of a summer rental condo that had beach access.  It was hot and humid every day, but Kat, Erika and I walked the beach every night and waded in the waves.  The condo pool was VERY cool, with a lazy river and kid area... but we didn't hang there much as the point was to visit with my parents, and provide tech support for their computer and various electronics.  Which we did, and it all went well.   Saw the alligator in their lake again, introduced Dad to the Mellow Mushroom's gluten free pizza, Kat did a few rides at Broadway on the Beach, and we saw some Myrtle Beach Boardwalk fireworks from afar.   All in all a good trip.
The girls are both looking forward to the start of school.   I'm not lying.  Not because we're not having a fun Summer, but because they are both good students and enjoy school (and seeing their friends, too!)
16 Aug  To catch up on the big things, try going to the Christmas Kazettes for 2011 and 2012.
Um, OK, so you may have noticed a large, um.... gap since the last month (and year) I posted.   I blame this on 3 things: 1)  The aforementioned brain surgery in Sept. 2010 which also necessitated Gamma Knife surgery in December 2010.  Tumor was non-cancerous but recovery took me many months.  2) Facebook.  I joined Facebook in 2009 and most of my updates, observations, and photos have been posted there.  Doing them here too just felt like too much work, especially since 3) we switched internet providers and the new provider along with Yahoo! changed their ftp protocols and my once simple uploading process became anything but simple.
Kat turns 7 this month! Kat's TKD birthday - Samuri sword cake cutting!

November 2010
25 Nov  Happy Thanksgiving!   About 2 weeks ago I really regained almost all of my energy and most if not all of the after-effects of my surgery went away.  I spent yesterday raking and running errands and playing with the kids and everything felt, well.... for lack of a better word, normal.  It's nice to be back.
13 Nov  Erika participated in the VTA (Virginia Theater Association) Middle School Competition Play.  Her school did "The Taming of the Shrew" (Erika was Maria).  They got GOLD!  We were all so proud of all the kids from our school, and Erika had a GREAT time!
I was feeling well enough that I did as much driving as I usually do on a trip like this (ok, maybe a *little* less), and even got in the pool at the hotel with the kids.  I still had a week to go before I could put my head underwater, but I had fun anyway.

October 2010
31 Oct  One of my all time favorite holidays.  Erika and our neighbor and her friend did a 'Cowboys and Indians' Theme; Kat was Tinkerbell.  I stayed home and handed out candy. It was an unusually quiet night, about half the kids that we had come to the door last year.
30 Oct  Rally to Restore Fear and/or Sanity by Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert in DC.   I sssooooo wanted to go, but I truly wasn't feeling up to it, plus it turned out that was the day of my 1st Girl Scout Leader Training classes!
23 Oct  Went to my high school reunion.  Had it been anything other than my high school reunion, I would not have gone - just wasn't feeling well enough, really.  Car ride was uncomfortable, luckily Doug did much of the driving... and that right there tells you how bad I was feeling - I HATE to be the passenger.
Had a great time, got in touch with some people I had lost track of, saw more of people that I only email or send Christmas cards to... overall a very good time and I'm very glad I went.  Don't know how much Doug enjoyed himself but I sure needed him, and a handful of friends who knew about my surgery, to get through the night.
05 Oct  The last couple of days I've tried to sit outside for at least 20 minutes - let Kat get some fresh air (and me too) and play in the front yard.  I sit in my camp chair and talk with her, but it's hard because she wants me to actually 'play' with her... and I can't.  But she's relatively good natured about it and a few afternoons Doug and/or Erika have been able to play with her.
Today was the first day Doug went back to work.  Getting up at 6:45 with Erika was horrible.  When I got back from getting her to the bus I had to wake Kat, which was no fun. She likes to sleep in but we have a few mornings  a week where she has to get up for Speech Therapy. Even though I'm now allowed to drive, I have yet another wonderful friend who is taking Kat there as my energy level isn't quite up to the drive, park, walk from the parking lot, sit and wait in the waiting area and then reverse it all.  I also still am not allowed to lift more than 10 pounds, so if Kat should stumble or need more than rudimentary help in the bathroom I risk going backwards in my recovery - so for now I am greatfully accepting the help that has been offered me.  I took a short nap while Kat was gone and when she got back we snuggled in my bed and had a lazy day.  Didn't do much other than get lunch and then read to each other and wait for Erika and Doug to get home.  Overall the day didn't go as well as I had hoped, but nothing *bad* happened, so that was good.  Here's hoping the rest of the week continues on the past trajectory of 'getting a little better each day'.  When I look back at how I felt a week ago I realized I'm doing SO much better, even though today by itself felt bad.
01 Oct I love love LOVE October.  Cooler temps, changing leaves, and my favorite holiday: Halloween.  Today, though, I hardly even realized it was October.  Way too distracted by my recovery.  I think I even wrote a check today without turning the first "O" in October into a jackolantern - first time in probably 20+ years.  I tried to push myself a little today, to find out where my limits were.  I know Doug has to go back to work sometime next week, so I need to find out what I can and can't do.  So... I made myself lunch and helped with Kat's.  And a few hours later I walked 1/2 way down to the bus stop when Erika came home (while Doug walked the whole way, and Kat stayed with me.)  I used my walking stick, which seems to help with my stamina - when I get too tired, using a little arm strength instead of all leg strength just works better for me.  Well, we got back to the house (at a much slower pace than usual) and I was WIPED - absolutely without energy the rest of the day.  Sat in bed for most of the time, ate dinner (down the stairs and then right back up) and I was ready to sleep around 9, which never happens for me. Sooo, we'll see what the weekend brings, but I don't think I'm ready for Doug to go back to work on Monday.

September 2010
30 Sept  Doug stayed home all this week to take care of me.  Various neighbors have been helping drive the girls to and from activities and are delivering dinner each night for the next few weeks.  We are truly blessed to have such a giving community, especially since we've only lived here 3 years. It has unbelievably helped my healing as having all those things taken care of leaves me focused on taking care of myself, which I really need to do since Doug can't stay home for 3 - 6 weeks!
27 Sept  Finally headed home today.  The happiest moment of my whole stay was when they took that &)#@ IV port out of my hand!  How I hate those things.  I can't wait to actually sleep more than 2 hours without someone coming for blood, blood pressure, temperature, medication, or to 'see how I'm doing'.  I had very good nurses, but their schedules suck.  Took all my strength to get up the stairs to my bedroom and then had to lay down for several hours before I had enough energy to go back down.  
Before my surgery they told me "Most people feel well enough to go back to work in 3 weeks."  That was a daunting thought to a stay at home mom.  My discharge instructions, on the other hand, had a note excusing me from work for SIX weeks!  That's a huge change, and I know I'm not ready to feel like I do today for 6 weeks.  :(
25 Sept  I should be going home today, but because I haven't been able to swallow anything other than ice chips (OK, I got some jello down yesterday - but that's it!) they're going to keep me here, and call in some experts.
Saw the experts.  No one knows why I'm having trouble swallowing.  On the bright side, I had ground up chicken, broccoli and mashed potatos for dinner tonight. Tasted like the best meal I've EVER had.  Ever.
23 Sept  Surgery.  Went well enough, though the neurosurgeon said the tumor was more involved than the MRI showed, and he didn't get as much as he hoped.  I will undergo radiation treatment in about 8 weeks to take care of the rest.  As for me?  General anesthesia and I don't get along, apparently.  Ugh.
22 Sept  Had my appointment, MRI and all pre-surgical appointments today. Am scared out of my skull.  Am forever indebted to friends Matt, Jeni and Alex Z. as they re-arranged their lives significantly so Jeni could come take care of Kat and Erika while Doug and I are at the hospital.
19 Sept  HUGE surprise for Erika today.  Yesterday we drove down the the University of North Carolina, and had dinner with dear friends. I said my 'goodbye' to them, as maudlin as that sounds, because surgery is just around the corner and I'm not sure how it's all going to turn out. But today it's all about Erika, and we told her where we were going as we were driving to "An Afternooon with Adam and Jamie" - the hosts of the TV show "Mythbusters"... which Erika absolutely LOVES and I can't believe we got tickets.  We all had a terrific afternoon. Well, maybe Kat didn't, it was all a little over her head, but she liked the (on screen) explosions and didn't fuss too much.
17 Sept  Erika thought this was her best day ever - in addition to having a part in her school's competition play "The Taming of the Shrew" (she's Maria), Erika found out today that she also got a part in the regular school play "The Almost True Tale of Robin Hood" which is a comedy based on Robin Hood. She's one of two narrators and is the largest part she's had yet.  She's SO excited and SO happy.  I can't wait until Sunday when she has even more things to smile about!
02 Sept  Kat started her Fall Session at 'The Little Gym'.  For now it is doing the job of pre-school, since she's STILL not potty trained.  Besides, Kat really needs some exercise, more than she needs the 'educational' part of a preschool classroom. She knows all her letters, can count to 100 with a little help, and is reading - really reading (!) - easy to moderate books.  The employees at our Little Gym location are all so friendly and great with the kids - it feels good every time we go.

June, July, August 2010
25 August  Had my appointment with the neurosurgeon and endocrinology team. They want my micro-adenoma out sooner rather than later, and by sooner they mean they've scheduled me for surgery in 1 month.  *pause*   This is a lot to digest.  I am currently scurrying to figure out childcare, as the surgeon and his team informed me there'd be a Wednesday appointment, Thursday surgery, followed by 2 to 3 days in the hospital.  Of course this didn't all happen at the beginning of this lazy summer when I could have dropped the kids off at a relative or friend's house - nooooo, it has to be during the school year.
23 August  I'm tired.  Between insomnia that's had me going to sleep around 3 am for the last 3+ weeks or so, plus waiting (with all the accompanying worries/questions) for my neurosurgeon's appointment this Wednesday, on top of unsuccessful potty training with Kat.... it's been a draining month.
On the other hand, this has been , over all, a VERY lazy summer, which I have enjoyed immensely. Am definitely looking forward to returning to some of the school year routine, but will miss having both Erika and  Kat home together with me.  As hard as it is to find things that are interesting to both girls, we do our best and both of them are very patient with the other. OK, maybe 4 year old Kat isn't the picture of patience, but that comes with age.  She's very good for the age she is.
22 Aug  Now that all Bowl America locations have gone smoke-free, we very happily accepted our friends' invitation to go bowling!  Kat's first time, I believe , and they had the cutest little velcro bowling shoes for her.   Erika hadn't been bowling in years, and has definitely been negatively influenced by Wii Bowling. ;)  When we finished our THREE games (I'm usually *done* by the end of 2 games) and were getting in the car, Kat asked in a very serious and deliberate voice "Daddy, when we have time, can we come bowling again as soon as we can?"  All 3 of us answered an emphatic "Yes".
14 August   Doug bought a new car!  Our 5th car, our 4th Honda. Spit Fyre - Doug's new car
August 05   Kat started classes at "The Little Gym" today.  She *really * likes it.
 August  Good Lord I've been delinquent in keeping this up to date.  For that, I apologize.
Rather than go back and try to recreate the last few months (which I've done when it's only been a few weeks) I'm just going to sum up:

June: brought us to the end of the school year.  Erika did great academically, and also got a part in her school's Fall Competition Play "The Taming of the Shrew".  It's a small part, but a part nonetheless.  We're very proud, and Erika couldn't be happier.  She'll tell anyone who'll listen "Drama ROCKS!"
Kat ended her 'school' year as well, getting a good report card from her speech teacher.  We have exercises and things to work on over the summer, but overall Kat has improved so much it's almost hard to believe she needs speech therapy.  (But she does).
Shortly after school ended we headed to upstate NY for a family camping trip.  We left unbearably hot temperatures only to find ourselves experiencing record cold (overnight) temperatures in the Adirondacks!  At least that made the campfire actually useful.
July: At the end of our camping trip was a gathering of friends from my hometown to celebrate my friends' parents 50th wedding anniversary.  Kat took her first turn on the dance floor (square/round/contra) and did exceptionally well for a 4 year old!  Erika, as always, made friends easily and also had a wonderful time.
We arrived home to triple digit temperatures; we unloaded the car at night and hid in the house the next few days til it went 'down' into the 90's.  Yuck! Thank God for central air conditioning!
We also started teaching Erika to swim... finally!  Kat may learn before Erika does.
I also had my head examined, literally, which led to an official diagnosis of 'pituitary micro-adenoma' which is basically a tiny benign tumor.  It's location threatens the optic nerve, or at least things having to do with my vision.  I've not been having any noticable problems with my eyes... so hopefully this discovery is one of the 'caught early' type things that will ultimately mean a good outcome.  I have an appointment with a neurosurgeon at the end of August.

May 2010
26 May  A week ago I wore my dressy overcoat on a rainy day to a friend's military retirement ceremony.  I actually debated about taking out the lining because it was not very warm outside.  I ended up taking it out and I was just fine - but then again I am usually warmer than those around me.
Today? It was about 85 degrees out.  I looked at Doug's winter coat hanging near the door and wondered if I could indeed put it away for the season. ? !
15 May  Happy Birthday, the 3rd and last time this year, Erika!   We had a barbeque for Erika and a bunch of her friends.  Absolutely perfect weather and Erika went to bed very late that night a very happy 12 year old.
10 May  Happy Birthday the second time this year, Erika!
Good weather, we hit the school's softball game after school (we lost), then picked up a local geocache on our way to 'dessert first' at Cold Stone Creamery.  Went home and had dinner and as I tucked in Erika she told me it was one of her best birthdays ever.  Awww!    
09 May  Happy Mother's Day, and Happy Birthday (the first time this year) to Erika, who was born on Mother's Day. Another nice day with the family.
07 May  Yet another feather in Erika's cap. She was chosen, along with a bunch of other students at her school, to attend a local Fitness Fair.  The criteria for being chosen was not fully explained, but Erika's physical education teacher told her that she was picked for being 'most improved'.  For Erika, who really dislikes P.E. class, especially any running, this was a nice recognition of the effort she has been putting forth.
The Fair took place about 20 minutes away from our home on a Friday evening (tonight) and consisted of many booths with information about healthy living, and lots of stations with active things to do.  Erika enjoyed the golf one, Kat liked the "Rainbow Markers" (run around locating different colored markers that were under buckets spread out across a section of the field) and we all liked the orienteering one, which was basically geocaching.
Although Erika's didn't arrive at her school before the event, she *did* get a free t-shirt out of all this, so that was a nice bonus.  We're all about t-shirts aruond here (S.O., Great Aloha Run, Blood Donation, Race for the Cure.......)
06 May  Another accolade for Erika. I got to attend the honor roll assembly at Erika's school - she was recognized, along with about 80 other 6th graders, for getting all A's in the 3rd quarter.  Yay, Erika!
04 May   Happy Star Wars Day.   May the "Fourth" be with You.
02 May  Here there and everywhere.  Doug and Erika went to Baltimore to watch the Red Sox game, and I went to our friend, Angel's, baby shower.  Kat stayed home with a babysitter.  Although the temperature at the baseball game was very hot, I think I can safely say a good time was had by all.

26 April  Had an exceptionally fun Girl Scout meeting today with our friend, Siobhan Quinn. She took the girls on a storytelling adventure.  I am always in awe of Siobhan and her many talents and I was happy we got to 'share' her with Erika's troop.
15 - 17 April   Suessical, Jr!  All 4 performances of Erika's school play were wonderful.  Many who attended remarked how great many of the kids were and how they couldn't believe this was a middle school production.  I agree!  Erika played "Mrs Mayor" and did a great job. We're so proud of her!
04 April  Happy Easter!  Got back from our awesome trip yesterday.  Our wonderful neighbors invited us to Easter Dinner, and we also had a fun Egg Hunt with all 4 of our girls.  A lovely and scrumptious end to a thoroughly enjoyable Spring Break.

31 Mar  Left today for our trip to Pigeon Forge, TN.  Our main objective is "MagiQuest", which we had seen on trips to visit my parents in Myrtle Beach, SC, and which I had also seen advertised at Great Wolf Lodge.  While a trip to Great Wolf Lodge has long been on my 'to do' list, they always increase prices during school breaks, and I have better things to do with $1,000+ for a simple 3 day trip.  So, I put the internet to work and found a MagiQuest in TN.  Much more poring over web pages scored us a cabin right near the main 'Strip' in Pigeon Forge. I was glad to pay about $15 extra per night to have our own bedrooms! The full kitchen and hot tub were also bonuses.  I was a little wary about renting the cabin over the internet, with only a few pictures to go by. When were the pictures taken? Were they really of the cabin we rented? After I made the reservation (yes, after) I found several independant reviews online. While they were mixed, overall they were positive, so I worried a bit less. Still, I was anxious to get there and make sure I hadn't made a huge mistake.
We got up early, Doug did the morning driving and I napped a bit - but overall the trip was so beautiful, and the family time enjoyable, even though I was tired it was worth staying awake.  Spring was 'sprunging' all over and the flowering trees, roadside wildflowers, and greening pastures were all worth a look.  Inside the car our double DVD players got a workout (only allowed on trips over an hour!) and I had picked up a few Easter themed DVD's so the girls had something new to watch.  Everyone was happy.
We arrived, checked in, the cabin *was* pretty nice, and we headed out to dinner.  I'll leave the rest of the details to the write-up.  Link in next entry.
Erika and Kat in front of the "Welcome to Tennessee" sign
29 Mar   Got together with some old friends today - the Buchanan's.  I'm friends with their whole family, but this time I saw the Buck Family Branch. Their kids are a little older and younger than Erika and they get along famously.  Brought them to Red Robin (their first time) for dinner and then parted ways for them to continue to visit/enjoy DC and then return to NJ, while we will pack and prepare to go to TN.
26 Mar  Erika received her Principal's Pride Award today.... and her first cell phone.  She said she had a very very good day. :)
23 Mar  Received a letter/invitation in the mail today, telling us Erika has been nominated to receive her school's "Principal's Pride Award"!
The invitation says "This is awarded to students who have shown exemplary conduct or behavior contributing to the postive and excellent environment at our school."
I have no idea how many other students have gotten this, or if a nomination automatically means she gets the award. Regardless, I will be at this ceremony with bells on!  Even better, Doug had already arranged for the day off, so he gets to come to the ceremony too!
22 Mar Truly a day to mark in our Family History: when I laid Kat in her bed at 11:52 after reading her 2 books and a make-up story, she actually said to me "I'm tired".   This after weeks and weeks if not months of being told EVERY NIGHT, no matter how late it was, "I'm not tired" as I laid her in bed. It's been 2+ weeks since I've made a concerted effort of getting her up 'early' in the morning. Admittedly, it's only early by my reckoning - because 8:30 to 9 am would be considered fairly late in most households with a preschooler!  
16 Mar  Was a sunny and warm day today, maybe in the 60's again.  Kat asked to play soccer, so when Erika came home from school we all went out and kicked a ball around for a bit. There was quite a strong breeze and Erika suggested trying to fly a kite! Unbelievably, I knew where at least one of our 5 kites was hiding - so I went to get it and found 2, only one with string. Again, surprisingly, I was able to turn up more kite string very quickly. The girls both enjoyed themselves though the wind was not very steady. Erika teaches Kat how to fly a kite in our side yard
14 Mar  Happy Pi Day everyone. Chocolate in the shape of pumpkins, with a pi symbol on them.
Pumpkin Pi - all made out of chocolate
12 Mar  It was a nice day yesterday. About 63 degrees, sunny in the early part of the afternoon... I dressed Kat in a short sleeved shirt and long pants and brought her outside to play. She complained the whole time and eventually insisted I give her a jacket. I pulled out her new red and black buffalo check FLEECE jacket - which she happily wore while asking for a hat and mittens. I drew the line there!   We kicked around a ball for awhile. I thought she'd warm up and take the jacket off, but NO!  Anyway, we had a good time enjoying these first few days of Spring.
10 Mar   There are still a few piles of snow around our house from the Feb 06 and Feb 10 snowstorms. Enough to pick up a slushy handful and throw a few snowballs, not enough to be trouble in any way. Although, the melting has turned the backyard into a big mud puddle!  Speaking of the big snow storms, Doug's parents visited during that time and since we were pretty much stuck in the house, I got out a puzzle for us to work on. Even Kat worked on it and managed to get a few pieces in! It's really the first time Kat's worked on a jigsaw puzzle with interlocking pieces, though she's been enjoying her wooden puzzles for quite some time. Since the one we had out last month was one with 500+ small pieces and it's been out a month and it's still unfinished, I decided to change it out for an easier one. I got out one with larger pieces, a 100 piece puzzle, which should be easier for Kat, as well as the rest of us.  I might just have to renew my relationship with Bits N Pieces!
08 Mar    Erika auditioned for her school play (a musical!) "Seussical, JR" and got the part of Mrs Mayor.  Doug subsequently volunteered to help with sets, and somehow wound up receiving all the plans to make all of them!  He somewhat got a break when the director learned that another school nearby had some parts of their set from a previous production, but Doug still has his work 'cut out for him'... ha ha ha!
Here's a photo of Step 1: the fish.
Seussical fishes: by Doug
05 Mar  Happy 22 Anniversary to us!

February 2010
20 Feb  Still enjoying the Olympics.  Tonight we lit a fire in the fireplace and the whole family watched the skiing, bobsledding, and speed skating.  Kat watched the first 2 man bobsled run and exclaimed "That looks like fun!!"  After that she went and got a pillow and used it as her sled.  She would run in place beside it and then jump on so she could steer it down the hill.  She was very interested in my story of doing a bobsled run in 1994.  I think we have found her Olympic sport.  :)
18 Feb  I've been enjoying the Olympics.  As I started out the door during this very busy day (still not ended at 2 am on Friday morning) I saw my car paints. Throughout the day I worked on my car window - the overlapping parts meant I needed to wait for parts to dry.
All but the green  ring and the red stuff on the bottom are in my good paints, which means it'll live through a rainstorm.  I have to find more green as I ran out, and the red stuff on the bottom is too detailed to do in my big stubby red paint sticks.  Here's to clear weather for a few days, eh?
Olympic Rings on my car window
17 Feb   Erika went back to school today.  On a 2 hour delay.  Roads are still not completely cleared although all main roads and highways are down to pavement and most have all lanes and ramps available.
School we be on a 2 hour delay for the rest of the week! I am loving it - I can stil be a night owl and still get almost 8 hours of sleep - no more morning nap!  Too bad it won't last.
12 Feb   Doug went to work today, first time he hasn't worked from home or taken time off all week due to the snow.  After the day he had, though, I think he would have preferred to stay home.  Short version: one of two train engines stopped working on way to work, traffic delayed shuttle bus on way to meeting, encountered (but thankfully wasn't on) a derailment on way to same meeting and wound up missing his normal train home which meant waiting an hour for the next one. Ack!  Metro wound up sending shuttle buses to get everyone around the derailed train.  We waited for an hour or so after the shutdown to get on a bus, then it had a difficult time with high traffic volume and snow on the streets.  By the time it got to the next operating metro station, the derailment had been cleared and the trains were running again.  I wound up being away from work for 6 hours to go to a 20 minute appointment.  Since I was supposed to be on vacation all day anyway, it was not that bad, but it was still pretty bad.
11 Feb   School has been canceled the rest of the week.  The kids are calling this "The Year that we got Two Winter Breaks"!   Since we have dashed out between snow storms and kept our food supplies up, I am able to sit back and enjoy the snow. We also finally dug a path to the woodpile , so I don't have to worry about 'needing' to build a fire for warmth, though our lights haven't so much as flickered even with 26 or so inches of snow on the ground!
10 Feb   Good thing my in-laws came yesterday, because getting them today would have been next to impossible!  Metro to Vienna (where I pick them up) was shut down, and Amtrak wasn't running most of their trains.  Roads are terrible again, although our one terrible road was actually improved by a layer of snow filling in the ruts that had formed and frozen each night.  Still no school.
09 Feb  I thought they'd have things cleared up pretty well by now, but no.  And there's more snow expected tonight and tomorrow.  Doug's parents were coming to town tomorrow but changed their plans to today. I picked them up before the snow started falling.  So far Erika hasn't had school Monday and today.
07 Feb  Ah! There is something called a sun.  Dug out enough to take this picture -->
You can't tell from that picture but out driveway is, in fact, cleared.  But no 'official' snowplow has visited our neighborhood and one of the two residential roads we have to travel to get to a 'main' road (that *has* been plowed) is almost impassable.  I can make it in my all wheel drive Honda Pilot, but I wouldn't want to do it in Doug's Civic sedan.
Our house after the February Blizzard of 2010
06 Feb  Yep. We got a ton of snow.  And it's still coming down.  Doug and I have both been out several times to shovel and there doesn't seem to be any end in sight!  Well, maybe it's tapering off a little.  For more info about this storm, see the Blizzard 2010 web page elsewhere on DutchOhana.
05 Feb   The storm approaches.  By all accounts we will be getting about 2 feet of snow!  I can't wait.

January 2010
29 Jan    Doug and Erika went to the Girl Scout Father Daughter Dance tonight.  This year it was a Disco theme. They both enjoyed themselves. Father Daughter Disco dance - Girl Scouts - 2010
25 Jan  A good day! Erika got a part in her middle school's Spring Musical, "Seussical, Jr."!  She will be playing "Mrs Mayor"  aka Jojo's mom.  Her friend Alex from elementary school will be playing "Mr Mayor" - which is nice because she doesn't have to get to know a new person AND figure out chemistry at the same time.
Erika has told us a few times now that trying out for the play last Fall was the 'best thing (she) ever did'!  She really feels like she's found a home in the Drama Department.  Doug and I are very happy that she's so happy.
22 Jan  We were all thrilled when Erika got a call-back for her "Seussical, Jr" audition at school.  When she got home, she said she thought the call-back went really well.  Can't wait to find out if she made it!
14 Jan   Kat continues to make progress with her Speech Therapist.  She seems to plateau fairly often, and then suddenly surge forward with a huge leap.  One drawback? Her favorite thing to say (clearly, of course!) at mealtimes is "I don't like that."
08 Jan  Doug just spent 3 days in Hawaii for a business trip. Well, actually he spent one day travelling there, one day at the business meeting and the next day traveling home.  I only had one request: that he bring me a lei.  It was a deliciously fragrant plumeria one. Awesome! The lei that Doug brought me from Hawai'i
04 Jan   Erika finally got to go to her first Girl Scout meeting this year!  Between play rehearsals and snow days she'd missed all the ones so far.  But... she's sold around 75 boxes of cookies already and we hope she'll get over 100!  I'm especially proud of her because usually she sells 40 to 50 in the neighborhood and the rest of her sales come from Doug bringing the form to work.  He'll still do that this year, but I like that Erika put in extra effort this year and boosted her own sales. WTG Erika!

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