Toy Story

This morning we went to Jennifer’s parents place to celebrate Thanksgiving with her side of the family. The moment we set Kaija down she walked directly to the place where Grandma keeps the baskets of toys. How quickly they learn!

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Kaija’s First Birthday

Today we celebrated Kaija’s first birthday! We just had our immediate families over for a small, intimate celebration in our new house, though unfortunately Robin and Andy couldn’t make it due to the weather conditions. We experienced our first snow of the season (well, except for in the Sierras on the drive from California). The west side of the state received almost two inches, which made it difficult for Robin and Andy to arrive in time for dinner and gift openning. Rachel was there with her 2-week old daughter. Brian had a previous engagement with a bowling league so he couldn’t make it.Jennifer made a terrific cranberry & pork stew for dinner. Kaija was allowed to eat her first cupcake (with frosting and everything!) and therefore we let her stay up an hour past her bedtime until the sugar buzz wore off. :)Kaija received lots of fun toys and warm clothes (just in time!) from family as well as a number of her friends from back in California. And she loved all of them, though we couldn’t make her keep any of the hats on indoors.

New House

Back in September, I elluded to some big news that I would eventually share. Well, now is as good a time as any.Jennifer, Kaija and I are now proud home owners in Michigan! After 5 years of living in California, we decided the time was right for moving back to our home state. With the assistence of many of our California friends (THANK YOU!), we loaded up a truck with all of our worldly belongings on Tuesday of last week. Jennifer’s mom and my mom flew out to help and then drove across the country with us in our two cars. We were able to stop in Carson City, Denver and Chicago along the way to visit with relatives. Fortunately the cars made it back with only minor incidents (needed to buy chains for driving over Echo Pass into Tahoe, the oil dipstick sheath broke in Carson City, one headlight burnt out on the way to Chicago, and the oxygen sensor just blew today on the Cabrio!).It’s good to be back in Michigan, though I’m sure I’ll miss the California weather. Michigan gave us a fine how-do-you-do yesterday morning that left us scraping frost off of the car windows.And despite some stress caused by our less than competent mortgage company representative (you’re just getting back to me about the mortgage closing costs and want to go over them? um, we’re sitting in the closing meeting with the title company now, we’ve already gone over them and signed the paperwork. *silence*), we’ve got the papers in our hands! We’ll be moving in this weekend. Crazy.