Sunday, January 25, 2009

DC Trip

At the beginning of January, we made the trip out east to our nation's capital. The main purpose of our trip was to pay a surprise visit to Rusty's sister, Ronda, who was there visiting her boyfriend's family for two weeks. Since neither Rusty or I had ever been to DC before, we went into town one day with Ronda and Mark to see some of the sights. We didn't have a lot of time, so we just found a place to park near the Reflecting Pool, and walked to the Lincoln Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, the World War II Memorial, and the Washington Monument. From there, we headed over to catch a glimpse of the White House, then grabbed a hot dog on the way back to the car. It was neat to see, in person, some of the things that, up until now, I have only seen in books and on TV.

Our family in front of Abraham Lincoln's statue

In front of the Washington Monument

Alex chasing pigeons -- the fattest, laziest pigeons I have ever seen! They didn't even fly away when he ran at them, just sort of waddled out of his path.

Alex and Auntie Ronda

We also traveled down to Virginia to spend a couple of days with my oldest friend, Michelle, and her husband, David. Rusty was able to do a presentation to their church on Sunday about Angola, and we enjoyed some time to just visit with them and catch up on their lives. (I am embarrassed to say that the camera didn't make it out of the bag the entire time we were there, so I have no pictures of our time with Michelle and David!)

On our way back to Detroit, we stopped in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania -- another place neither of us had ever been. We picked up a map at the visitor's center and did the self-paced auto tour. Seeing all the monuments and the battlefields which look much the same as they did in the 1860's was inspiring and thought-provoking. Then we stopped and got a bite to eat at a restaurant downtown before heading home.

Alex in front of one of the Gettysburg Monuments

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Merry Christmas, 2008

We had a wonderful Christmas this year. It was somewhat bittersweet for me since I couldn't help but think that this may be our last holiday season in the United States for quite some time. Still, I was determined to enjoy it and to help Alex enjoy it, too. He really got into opening presents this year, which was fun for all of us to watch. My brother Matt was home from ACU for almost a month, and we enjoyed our time with him... and playing his X-box until it died (sorry, man). After Christmas was over, we made our traditional trip to the Henry Ford Museum to see the holiday model train display -- always a hit with Alex. On New Year's Eve, we watched "It's a Wonderful Life" (Matt had never seen it!) and then had some time to reflect and pray together as a family as we welcomed in the new year.

Christmas morning -- traditional family pic in front of the tree

Alex and Uncle Matt playing a duet

Driving the Thomas train at the Henry Ford Museum

More hands-on fun at the museum

Guitar Hero fun -- even Mom got in on the action!

On New Year's Eve, we let Alex tear down and eat the gingerbread house.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Christmas Prep

We really enjoyed being at my parents' house for the entire holiday season this year. For me, half the fun (or more) of Christmas is all the preparations that go on in the weeks leading up to it. I got to help my mom with all her Christmas baking -- the famous Stephens' cookie trays -- yum, yum! And Alex was old enough this year to participate in some of the special Christmas preparations, like:

decorating the Christmas tree...

watching the train go around and around...

decorating sugar cookies (and sampling all the candy sprinkles)...

helping Mommy decorate a gingerbread house...

...and making pinecone ornaments.

Coming soon... Christmas pictures, our trip to D.C., and pregnancy updates. Oh, and I may throw in more snow pictures, too! Check back soon.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Fun in the Snow

My humblest apologies to all our loyal blog readers for not updating in over a month. I have several posts in the works, so check back over the next few days for some Campbell family news and goings-on.

For the first time in my life, I am living in a place that gets lots of snow in the winter. So far, it has been fun, although since we have all been battling the sickies, we have not been able to get out and enjoy playing in it as much as we would like. These pictures were taken in December -- in the weeks leading up to Christmas, we got a lot of snow. So, we had a white Christmas this year, which was fun. (As I type this, Michigan is in the middle of an arctic freeze -- we had several more inches of snow earlier in the week, and now the temps are in the single and negative digits. Brrrr!)

Teaching Alex how to make a snowball -- or trying, anyway. All of the snow we have had so far has been dry and powdery, so snowballs and snowmen have been hard to make.

Alex and Uncle Matt