Enjoying the rocking chair Aunt Colleen gave her for Christmas.
Wednesday, December 14
THE PRESIDENT: I have some extra time, I thought I might answer some questions. (Laughter.) Yes, ma'am.
Q Since the inception of the Iraqi war, I'd like to know the approximate total of Iraqis who have been killed. And by Iraqis I include civilians, military, police, insurgents, translators.
THE PRESIDENT: How many Iraqi citizens have died in this war? I would say 30,000, more or less, have died as a result of the initial incursion and the ongoing violence against Iraqis. We've lost about 2,140 of our own troops in Iraq.
Q Mr. President, thank you -- (unintelligible)
THE PRESIDENT: I'll repeat the question. If I don't like it, I'll make it up. (Laughter and applause.)
Jokes, (32,000+ dead), jokes, laughter, applause.
Sunday, December 4
Thursday, December 1
Wednesday, November 9
Monday, October 31
One tired pumpkin yawns as we make our way to dinner with friends. After that we headed to "Hill-o-ween," an annual gathering at Eastern Market full of kids and costumes. MJ thought it was all pretty entertaining. Plus she saw her playgroup pals.
Thursday, October 27
Tuesday, October 4
Wednesday, September 14
Thursday, August 18
To celebrate MJ's birthday, we trekked to see a butterfly-filled greenhouse at a park in the suburbs. Here's our one-year-old outside the park - she's either playing with a leaf, or preparing to light a pipe. Can't remember which.Ahh, if you look at the larger version of the picture, you can see it's a leaf.
Sunday, August 14
Saturday, July 30
Tuesday, July 26
A batch of reports came today. Here's my favorite:
PSA 102 - 7/17/2005 - 9:00:00 PM Hours
THEFT - 1 - 500 Block 6TH ST NE
c1 reports that he let s1 spend the night over his house because he was going to fix c1's computer, when c1 awoke this morning, s1 was gone along with his computer.
I had been thinking about letting the Sears guy sleep on our couch so he could fix the washing machine, but now I'm not so sure. Thanks, Crime Reports!
Saturday, July 9
Tuesday, July 5
Sunday, July 3
Monday, June 20
Thursday, June 16
That's right - fortunately for all of us, Congress has solved every other problem facing the country, and has turned once again to the yearly flag burning debate. Of course, this year the issue is even more grave than usual. The Citizens Flag Alliance, which supports the amendment and keeps track of these things, reports that flag burning incidents are down only a little in 2005 ... to a total of ONE.
It's a little hard to grasp those kinds of numbers. To put ONE in perspective, think of the number 10, then subtract nine. To use a sports reference, if you had a large football that was as big as 100 football fields, just ONE of those footballs would stretch across some 100 football fields. In astronomical terms, just ONE piece of string as long as the distance between the Earth and the Moon would span all the way from us here on Earth to our closest neighbor, the Moon. It took the Apollo astronauts three days to make the same journey! That's a big piece of string!
So you can see why we need to spend time on the flag amendment.
Monday, June 13
"If time is an aspect of space, as Einstein showed us," MJ thought, "does that mean that, when my car seat is at rest in space, such as at this stop sign, I am traveling through *time* at the speed of light? And furthermore, why is my binky attached to this plastic chain?"
Friday, June 10
Wednesday, June 8
Tuesday, June 7
Friday, June 3
Sunday, May 29
After a confusing night in a completely different time zone/hemisphere, Marina woke up (at 3 a.m.) and was ready for action. Once the rest of the world caught up with us, we went out shoppin' for baby items. We found out that there are actually quite a few baby items for sale.
Marina liked this new hat.
Friday, May 27
Thursday, May 26
This afternoon we'll be visiting the U.S. embassy to take care of the
final bit of paperwork necessary to make Marina an American citizen.
Late tonight, actually very early tomorrow morning, we'll board a
Lufthansa flight for home. We'll arrive back at Dulles around 1:30 pm
We can't wait to see everyone, and Marina is looking forward to meeting you.
Friday, May 20
We made it to the "Grand Hotel Ai-Ser" in Almaty. All three of us are
doing well. Marina had a good time during the trip, looking around at
all of the people. She's back on something of a schedule in our hotel
room now, sleeping through the night and eating like a champ.
Right now I'm sitting at the "Troy Internet Cafe" in a mall not too
far from the hotel. Almaty is a surprisingly cosmopolitan city with
just about anything you might need. Yesterday our translator took some
of us to buy strollers at the main bazaar. It was a huge building
filled with stalls selling everything from blue jeans to stiff fish.
We passed on the stiff fish, but I think the stroller is going to work
out. Marina loves it, so long as it keeps moving.
It looks like we'll probably be leaving Kazakhstan early next Friday
morning, but we're hoping we might be done a day or two earlier.
Tuesday, May 17
We're packing right now, getting ready for the trip to Almaty tomorrow. We should be there for 7-10 days while all of the necessary paperwork is completed for Marina to exit Kaz. and enter the U.S.
It's going to be a huge adventure for all of us. Just the van ride to the airport will be one of the biggest things that's ever happened to Marina, not to mention everything that comes after that. I like to think that in this picture Marina is looking toward the future, imagining life as it's going to be and thinking, "I'm ready."
Either that, or she's looking at that tricycle again.
A couple things are going on here.
First, I didn't realize how much babies HATE to see stacking cups stacked up. If you build a pile of stacking cups, they will crawl across a room to knock them down. They evidently do not like the order represented by neatly stacked cups.
Second, this is one of my favorite expressions so far. I am sure we will see this face again when she is about 13 or 14.
Here's the approach to the main bridge over the river. Some of the busses, like this red one, seem to be surplus from Sweeden. They still have destination signage for places like "Stockholm" and "Centrum."
The yellow building in the background is typical. They make up much of the town. Apartments above, stores below.
We went to court yesterday and again today - turned out to be a two-step process. But everything worked out OK. The adoption petition was approved, and we're leaving Ust on Wednesday morning for Almaty. This afternoon we received the adoption certificate and a new birth certificate listing us as the mother and father.
Wednesday, May 11
Tuesday, May 3
Monday, May 2
Marina is happy and busy. She laughs, crawls, rolls around, reaches
for toys, and likes to chew on things (there are four little teeth
coming in on top and two already on the bottom).
We visit for a couple of hours in the morning and a couple of hours in
the afternoon. All three of us are worn out when we're done!
We're happy with how well everything is going, and we're feeling pretty lucky.
Friday, April 29
Tuesday, April 26
The situation is we're heading to Kazakhstan on Wednesday. That's pretty much on the other side of the world from here. The map above (here's a larger version) shows some of the main cities. We'll be spending time in Almaty, which is the main city and located near the southern border, and Ust-Kamenogorsk, which sits up in the northeast. For those of you who follow Kazakh geography, "Ust" is now perhaps better known as Oskemen, the Kazakh version of the name. Everyone still seems to call it Ust, though. It's catchy that way.
The trip itself is a long one. We're flying Dulles - Frankfurt - Almaty, which comes out to 7,253 miles. It's about 8 hours to Frankfurt, a 4 hour layover, then another 6 1/2 hours to Kazakhstan. On the bright side, we'll get to see Spanglish for free.
We plan to take a lot of pictures, some of which should show up at this site. Internet access will be sporadic during the first couple of weeks in Ust, but should get better in Almaty. So, by all means, email us.