27 December 2010

Christmas 2010

Our 3-day Christmas extravaganza has come to an end but, as usual, we have many photos to remember it by!

Christmas Eve:
Kennedy is all ready for Christmas Mass in her Christmas dress!
On our way to church, we stopped by to visit grandma LeeAnn and wish her a Merry Christmas.
Roderick was sick on Christmas Eve. Kennedy is always ready with a little snuggle!

Mass didn't go well... Kennedy was in rare form so we left after about 30 minutes.
I had no desire to a) sit through mass with a screaming child or b) chase her around the back of the church.
Hopefully God understood :)
Since we left church early, we stopped by Heidi and Brian's and wished them a Merry Christmas!

Payton and Kennedy (neither willing to smile!)

Next, we continued on to my mom's for a great Christmas Eve dinner!

Christmas Day:

We got up at 6:30 a.m. so we could make it back down to my mom's in time to open presents on Christmas morning. Rachael is at prime "santa-age" so she was just beside herself with excitement. So fun to see!
Six-year olds at Christmas are the best!
Kennedy giving Katie the dog a big squeeze...

Later that day, we went to John and Patty's for Christmas dinner. We FINALLY got a photo of all 5 McKenna grandkids. This was quite an undertaking... still not the greatest picture but they are all in one place and looking in the general vacinity of the camera! We'll take it!
grandpa John and Jean
Three pregnant ladies!
Jamie (due NOW!)
Amy (about 30 weeks)
Me (13 weeks)
Chris and Jamie
Jen and the kids
the whole crew opening gifts
John made a delicious prime-rib dinner
Ben, Sean, Harv
Mckenna granddaughters (so far!)
Moraiya (3), Elsie (almost 3), Kennedy (almost 2)

The Day after Christmas:

We always celebrate with Sean's mom and siblings on Camano Island the day after Christmas. Linda made a delicious turkey dinner and we had a great day visiting, relaxing, and opening gifts!

Kennedy with grandma Linda
our adorable nephew Tyler
Amy and Roderick
Kennedy with Jessica's new baby kitty- so cute!
Linda got each of us a cool plaque for our homes ... love it!

What a wonderful Christmas!

11 December 2010

Saying Goodbye

Moving day is quickly approaching and I am preparing to say goodbye to our home. For many reasons, I am feeling sad and nostalgic to leave this lovely house. Today I realized that this is our last full weekend here and now I think about how everything I do here over the next week will be the last time. Therefore, I have written the following ode to our much-loved first home.

Sean bought this house five years ago. One year later, I moved out of the Seattle apartment that Heidi and I shared and moved in with my soon-to-be husband (I know, I know... sinners!). Leaving my little apartment in Seattle was sad in its own right because I knew it would be the last time Heidi and I would ever be roommates (after living together through all of our college years and even after, this was a big deal). It was the end of roommate and "best friend" living. College was long over and I had begun my second year of teaching. Sean had proposed and it was time to move on with life. Though sad, I was ready and excited to begin the next phase... marriage.

Effortlessly (okay, almost effortlessly) I moved in. Given that Sean had already lived in the house for a year, he did not love some of the changes I quickly made (moving the silverware drawer, adding a fruit basket, taking down a few god-awful pictures) but he handled it fairly well and we realized, with relief, that we did love living together and now we just needed to make it official. Six months later, we tied the knot, spent 10 glorious days in Hawaii and returned home as rested, sun-tanned newlyweds.

For the next year, we enjoyed life. We hosted countless dinner parties with friends and family. We decorated like crazy for Christmas and we even got a dog (as many of you know, the dog did not ultimately make it in our family but that is a story for another time). About a year after we were married, we learned the exciting news that I was pregnant! We were elated and couldn't wait to welcome this little baby into our lives. Thus, we began preparing the nursery... Sean painted and we picked out furniture and baby bedding. We took photos of my growing belly in the kitchen and Sean gave me nightly foot and back rubs while we watched T.V. in the evenings (by the way, I am wondering when these will start up again)?

On February 10, 2009, Kennedy Renee McKenna made her appearance and we were immediately in love. We brought her home on a Thursday afternoon. Just like that, we had become a family. And just like that, I became even more attached to our house because it was now the place where we had brought our first baby home.

Now, Kennedy is almost two and as I look back on these past two years, I realize that they will be forever etched into my memory. She is a toddler now and is quickly becoming a little girl. We will move from this house and though she will never remember having lived here, I will remember it always. Whenever I think of her as a baby or of myself as a new mom, I will think of this house. When I think of her first bath, first roll, first crawl, first word, I will remember this house. Over the years, I imagine we will do occasional nostalgic drive-bys. I imagine that we will look at our house from the street and remember how Sean proposed to me in the living room. We will remember BBQ's in the backyard and the time raccoons killed all of the Koi fish in our little pond. We will remember how hot the house was in the summer and how Sean would lay in bed and squirt a water bottle at our moving ceiling fan so we could feel the cool mist. We will remember how I earned my masters degree while we lived here. We will remember our fantastic neighbors. Mostly young families just starting out. All honest, lovely people. We will remember how I learned to cook here and how we navigated through the beginnings of married life (household chores, sharing money, working as a team). I will remember how hard Sean worked on our yard and how wonderful it looked each summer.

Mostly though, I will remember how happy we were here. We were happy as two and even happier as three. Now, we will move on to a different house and as we prepare to be a family of four, I hope and pray that the next chapter will be as fun as the first. I am excited to find out.

Oh how far we've come...

Heidi and Brian had us over for dinner last weekend along with Sarah, Kevin and Wyatt. We took a few photos in front of their Christmas tree. We were laughing about how far we have come. We all have little kiddos now and though our evenings are not as wild as they used to be, we have just as much fun. It will be (and already is) so fun to see the kids together. I look forward to many wonderful memories with both of these families. Birthday parties, camping trips... I can't wait!

Heidi and Payton (3 months)
Me and KennedyI (21 months)
Sarah and Wyatt (6 months)
the Williams family
the Willoughby family

Our Little "Nugget"

At my 10-week check-up last week, my doctor had a difficult time finding the baby's heartbeat with the doppler (stress!) so he did a quick ultrasound just to verify that everything was ok. As you can see, our little nugget is safe and sound in there. If you look closely, you can even see the little arms and legs. I am really excited for my 18-week appointment ... it will be great to know that everything is developing normally and of course... to find out what this little one IS! My gut-feeling is another girl but I could definitley be wrong. I don't have a great track-record with these kinds of predictions.  Everyone else thinks it is a boy. We will be thrilled either way. Obviously having a girl and a boy would be wonderful and we would be equally blessed to have two precious little girls! Now I just have to be patient and WAIT... sigh... ;)

Santa Photos 2010

My mom and I took the girls to see Santa and Mrs. Clause last weekend. Rachael is it at perfect age ... she loved every minute of it and looked as cute as could be with her toothless grin. Kennedy, on the otherhand, dealt with the experience but I wouldn't say she was overcome with affection for Santa or his lovely wife. She did love the candy cane they gave her though!