Monday, December 30, 2013


Andrew has been has been off work for the holidays and doesn't go back until the 2nd and we've had a really nice, cozy couple of weeks. One of the best parts has been taking turns sleeping in in the morning. With a little more sleep under our belts having two kids is starting to seem quite manageable (but I guess I'll get back to you when it's just me versus the two of them again). 

Inara has finally recovered from her jet lag and has seemingly snapped out of the most terrible of her terrible twos. Now, she's actually really pleasant to be around and we could not have hoped for a better big sister for Alba. She hugs her, kisses her and talks to her. She shows her her toys and invites her into her room with her. She reads her books and is always concerned with where she's at. Her firsts words when waking up in the morning are frequently "where is Alba?" It's only on occasion that she objects to Alba looking at her things or being held by us. When there is something she doesn't want Alba to have, she takes it, hides it in her room and shuts the door. Alba is oblivious to her efforts (for now). Inara has also picked up saying sorry as soon as she as much as brushes by you. She even apologizes when we should be the ones apologizing. Overall, she is a lot of fun right now. 

Alba is growing. Fast. She's 14 weeks and tonight she is wearing a Christmas pajamas Inara wore for her first Christmas (when she was six months) and it's snug. She's more than two pounds heavier than Inara was at this age and most people guess that she's four or five months. I guess she just wants to keep up with big sister. She's a very happy baby when she's at home, cooing and smiling, but hates going to unfamiliar places and doesn't like people much. In other words, complete opposite of Inara as a baby. She's able to roll over and can play with a toy while on her belly (although she prefers just rolling over as soon as possible) and sits with a little bit of support. Here she is:


Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas Eve

We spent Christmas eve at my mom's house with my mom, dad and one of my cousins.

Watching Donald Duck - A Swedish Christmas tradition (only this once has Inara been allowed to watch that horrible duck).

Creepy Santa. We spotted him walking with a lit lantern at the farthest end of my mom's property and called for Inara to look. Wide-eyed and pressed against my legs, she allowed him to come inside. As he started pulling present out of his bag, she noted that he didn't look so well, theorizing about his old age.

She repeated several times: "Santa looks a little unwell."

She probably figured she better start opening her gifts before Santa keeled over. When Santa had left and Andrew came back, he asked her why she had not went upstairs to get him when Santa was there. She got a bewildered look on her face, as if she hadn't thought of that, until Andrew said it was ok and that he would see him next year. Then she said: "He looked unwell, but he was very nice. He said "ho, ho, ho."" She was disappointed in the lack of reindeer and concerned about Santa's health, but had no questions in regards to Santa's legitimacy.

Alba's first Christmas present. The wrapping paper was awesome.

Cajsa and Alba

Grandma showing Inara how to use her new stick horse (which grandma made herself).

Christmas dinner.

Alba's opinion of Christmas dinner.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Jingle Bells

The fact that this had been going on for about ten minutes when I decided to start the camera might have had something to do with Andrew's expression:

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Sunday, December 22, 2013

And after a long pause...

Another post.

We have not been good about posting since we got back. Both Inara and Alba were jet lagged and they tag-teamed Maria with staying up at night. A few nights ago they actually took turns crying. Alba would stop when Inara started and wait until she needed to take a breath. Constant screaming. It would have been funny if it hadn't been so awful.

My grandfather passed away shortly after we got back and that was a massive drag on any desire I had to post anything.

Anyways time moves on and both the girls are getting back into the groove. Maria still isn't though.

Anyways Maria wants to do a 'Merica post so I'll leave that to her and focus on the Christmas build up.

Inara has specified that all gifts delivered from Santa are hers. All of them. Even those delivered to other houses. She was quite sure of this. We got her grandmother a gift and she asked who it was for. I explained and she said that was wrong. It was hers as it would be given on Christmas. I said that wouldn't work and grandma would be sad. She pondered that and relented. Grandma could keep the gift but SHE would open it. Completely reasonable.

Alba seems to be a pagan as she has shown no interest in the Christmas spirit.

Here are a few pictures of the Christmas build up in our house.

Inara got this from Maria's cousin. She seems to like it. I guess?

This is the gingerbread house that Casja built. RIP. 12/21/13 - 12/22/13

Inara was much more interested in the cookies and putting candy on them. The house was okay though. RIP most of the pictured cookies.

Alba starting bike lessons. She seems to have real ability! Look at that look in her eyes. She is focused. She may also have been pooping.

Definitely pooping here.

Who is that handsome man behind you Alba?
They both wanted to be carried. We'll see how long they allow the other one to be carried at the same time.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Back Home

We've been back home for a little over a week and the jet lag is starting to ease up. As you can imagine, the first few days were a bit of a struggle for Inara. Fortunately, she went back to preschool right away. Because really, I can't think of anything nicer to hand over to someone else than a jet lagged two-year old. Anyways, I will post pictures from our U.S. trip shortly. Until then, some Alba: