Monday, January 31, 2011

Let's Swim!

On nights like this....


it is nice to have this warm and ready downstairs....




We finally learned how to use the jacuzzi. Chelsea loves having her own pool in the basement!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Learning Our ABC's

It's back to Kindergarten for Larry and I. We began Hungarian lessons this week! We have a teacher that is coming to our house twice a week after the kids go to bed. She is very nice and patient and will gear the lessons toward what vocabulary we are interested in learning. When we began, she asked what words we already knew. At this point, our vocabulary consists of about 3 words - igen (yes), nem (no), and kosonom (thank you). We have a long way to go!

Our lesson began with the ABC's. There are 44 letters in the Hungarian alphabet. Our brains quickly were on overload as we tried to learn the letters and their sounds. We have to train our brains to remember that "s" makes the sh sound and "j" makes the y sound. "C" makes the s sound and "cs" makes the ch sound. Our eyes were pretty glazed over after an hour! We did learn a few new words and I am practicing them this week. If we can learn a little bit each week, we will be far better off than we are now!

Since she will gear the lessons to what we want to learn, we think we'll be providing examples of things we will find useful. For example, next week I plan to show her some McDonald's coupons we have. If we went to McDonald's, I assume ordering at the drive-thru would be quite challenging. Not that we eat there, of course.....

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Trip to the Gyermekgyogyasz

On Friday, Chelsea came down with fever and a headache and stayed home from school. I didn't think much of it. She was playing and acting fine. Saturday morning at 3 am, she started throwing up. The timing was horrible....we were scheduled to complete filming for HHI all day Saturday and Sunday. So, bless her heart, we settled her in her bed, gave her a bucket, and did the best we could to check on her and complete the shoot. Parents of the Year right here!

I was sure she would be fine Sunday morning, but she was very lethargic, still feverish and feeling awful. Once again, we settled her in and went about doing what we had to do. By Sunday night, she was looking pretty bad. She hadn't eaten since Friday morning and hadn't had much to drink. I started googling dehydration and was pretty sure she was dehydrated. Larry assured me she would live until morning, so we put her in our bed and planned to call the doctor as soon as the office opened on Monday.

Rozsakert Medical Center is a great clinic just a few minutes from our home. They are English speaking and many of their doctors are American trained. It is definitely a different feel than our former pediatricians office, but in a good way. In Pearland, we loved our pediatrician, but would frequently wait an hour to be seen. Here, we waited about 15 minutes and then were called in by the Doctor herself. At that point, she kindly informed the only other family waiting that she was running a few minutes behind. We have never seen that before!

After her assessment, and some discussion in Hungarian with the nurse, she determined that Chelsea was somewhat dehydrated and needed to drink a fair amount before we could leave. They took us to a little room and gave Chelsea some water and cookies, but she still wouldn't eat or drink. At that point, the Dr. recommended an IV. Fabulous. We were grateful that they could do the IV there and we didn't have to visit a Hungarian hospital. Chelsea was horrified, of course, and it was quite the ordeal. We ended up being there for 6 hours (with Cade, too!) and she had to have a liter of fluids via IV before we could leave.

We were very pleased with her care. The doctor checked on her every half hour or so while we were there and gave me her cell number to call this morning. I had to report how much fluid she consumed this morning, and if she didn't drink enough, we were going to have to go back for another IV! That was a good enough threat for Chelsea and she consumed her required amount before I called the doctor. She has perked up a lot and I think we are over the hump. For our first visit, that was quite the experience. Hopefully any future visits will be much less traumatic!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Hungarian Worship

Excuse the poor quality. I recorded it on my Blackberry, but can't get the video off of there due to work restrictions. So I played it and recorded it using our Flip. Anyway -- it gives you an idea of the church we are currently visiting. I wish I could tell you what we were singing about right now, but I don't remember if this is one of the songs that also had English written on the screen underneath or not. We're hoping that most of the songs will have english underneath the hungarian words so that we know what we are singing about.

It is a pretty surreal experience to join with this group singing!



Edited to add: "In Christ Alone" is the song we're singing. "For I am His, and He is mine -- bought with the precious blood of Christ"








We're hoping to get plugged in with a group of English speakers in a small group. There is one group that meets already, but they evidently don't have kids so I'm guessing that would get difficult. We ran in to one of my coworkers after church and he is interested in helping get an english small group started where kids can be present. I figure we'll try to get a babysitter that we all share. That was a tremendous blessing while we were in Pearland and are excited that possibility may be present here, too.

Maybe we'll get a better video up for everyone soon. Better yet, maybe you'll get to come with us in person when you visit us!
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Monday, January 17, 2011

Little Man

Today the little man is 18 months old! Tomorrow, he'll be riding off on his motorcycle.
He usually gets the short end of the blog stick, so here's a post all for you, my sweet little boy.





I never could have imagined how a little boy could capture my heart. I adore Chelsea and all things girly. I wasn't sure how I would do with dirt and trucks and balls. There is something about a boy and his momma.....I always heard that, but now I know. You are my precious little love bug. Cade, you are no longer such a baby, but a full blown toddler. I love the way you can't quite run, but toddle so quickly. I love the way you call me mama or the way you say mommy. I love to hear new words come out of your mouth....your newest are boo, uh oh, and whoa. You love to come around the corner and say, "boo!" Your big blue eyes melt my heart, precious little one. At 18 months, I love the way you love your big sis -and she adores you. She calls you little chicken and rock star...you smile and follow her wherever she leads. I love the way you drive your trucks and throw your balls and laugh when you burp. I love seeing your tender heart as you hug Rudy and all your stuffed animals. I love how you go off and play, but then come back every few minutes to check in and get a hug. I love reading you "Brown Bear" and "Goodnight Moon" over and over again. I love that God chose you for me......I love being your mommy.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Laundry Woes

When we moved into our house, I was very excited about the laundry room. It has a washing machine AND a dryer, a true luxury in Europe. The counter space is great and it even has some drawers for storage.

Fast forward a few weeks. I quickly learned my dryer wasn't much of a dryer. After all, a dryer is supposed to dry things. Hmmm. After loads were in there for 3 hours and still not dry, I realized I had a problem. Instead of the dryer, I resorted to this.......

It worked okay, but stiff clothes aren't very comfortable. I procrastinated on doing laundry and just let it pile up.....and pile up. Laundry was taking over the upstairs. True confessions: I hadn't washed towels at all. Thankfully, we have a lot of towels! And clothes.
Wednesday I came home from running errands to a great surprise......a new dryer! Yay for our landlord!
It is nice and shiny and new and actually dries clothes! Very exciting! It does take awhile, and it collects the water and the water must be dumped after every load or two. It is strangely satisfying to see how much water comes out of the clothes.
With new dryer ready to go, I decided to tackle the laundry monster. I piled all the dirty towels up and headed downstairs. My washing machine is European, meaning small. Very small. How small you ask? The picture below is a load of towels that I finally washed. How many towels equal a full washing machine?


Two! It will hold two towels.

Needless to say, laundry will be a full time job!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Ice, Ice, Baby!

We have been back in Budapest for a week now, so we decided it was time to get out of town! Lake Balaton is about an hour and a half from Budapest. It is the largest lake in Central Europe. In the summer, it is a popular beach and water sports location. In the winter, it is a great place to ice skate and watch people ice sail. Today was a "warm" day of about 40 degrees. We weren't sure what the condition of the ice would be, but we decided to head out and explore the area.

There are no frozen lakes in Texas, so it was quite the sight - ice as far as the eye can see. The lake was very rugged the first place we stopped. The area was like a ghost town, so we decided to head to a different spot. I didn't want to be the first one to test the ice!

The next place we stopped, it was super smooth and we saw several people playing ice hockey. Looks like a good spot! Due to the heat, there was a thin layer of water on top of the lake. Larry tested it for us, I said a prayer, and we headed out.


Cade enjoyed ice sledding way more than snow sledding!




We all got in on the fun!

So much fun!

How cute is he?


We found out later the ice sailing takes place in a different town on the lake. Next time, we will head there and ice skate and watch the boats. For today, more fun memories made in Hungary!


Friday, January 7, 2011

Harlingen Christmas

Kenny, Cassie, Hunter, Erin, Jeff, Cade, Carey, Larry, Geney (aka Grammy), Hunter, Emma Grace, Madeline, Chelsea, Wilbron (aka Papa)

My parents were so excited to give this twin doll to Chelsea

Uncle Jeff, in his own words on Facebook, is popular with the kids, especially if he has food!

He also seems pretty popular when he has a motorcycle! Cade screams when he sees motorcycles now, just like his uncle!

Hopefully you can see Chelsea's face behind the helmet. She is grinning from ear to ear. Mama finally agreed to let her go for a little ride, but she couldn't leave the neighborhood.

Here's one without the face shield down. Good times!

Not to be left out, Cade also took a ride. The motorcycle just didn't go anywhere, but he still had fun!

We had a great trip to the Valley. We were so thankful that everyone was able to be together!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Christmas!

Better late than never, Christmas pictures! We had a fabulous Christmas in Houston and beyond. My kids are super blessed and had 8 Christmases! How fun is that? We started off having Christmas with my grandparents and aunt/uncle in Florida when we went to Disney. We came back to Houston and enjoyed Christmas visits with both of our kids birth parents and birth grandparents, and even Cade's great grandparents! What a blessing! We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with my family in Houston, and then we traveled to Harlingen to see Larry's family and have our final celebration. Thankfully we came to Houston with 4 empty suitcases. We went back to Budapest with 8 suitcases, all expertly packed and weighed by my great husband. Amazingly, we made it back to Budapest with all the loot.

Here are a few pics -







Christmas morning, we led Cade over to see what Santa left him. He saw a lollipop sticking out of his stocking, grabbed it, and walked away happy.

The girls had a blast doing shows for us. Papa is very kind to let them use the pool table for a stage. It is perfect for their dance moves!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

First Haircut!

After we returned to Houston from the Disney trip, I gave in and finally took Cade to get a haircut. I got Chelsea's cut once in Budapest with bad results, so I opted to let his wait until we were back in the good ole USA. I was expecting some tears, but he did great!


He looks like such a big boy now!

More Disney

I have my camera back! Yay! Here are a few more Disney pics.

The parks were all decorated for Christmas. It was beautiful. The castle lights were especially pretty.

Chelsea loved meeting the fairies, except Tinkerbell couldn't fly. "Mom," she said, "they aren't the real fairies. They are just people dressed up with the same hair." Oh.
Cade was not impressed with the fairies.


Seems like we have a lot of pictures like this. Poor little tired baby. Papa was a good place to take a nap.


Cade loved the parades, especially when he spotted Mickey.


Chelsea (black shirt) hopped right up when the Disney Rock girls invited kids to come dance.


It was so much fun to be at Disney with Nana, Papa, Laura, Scott, Macy, Haylee, and Zac! Chelsea loves her cousins!



Fun with Daddy on the Teacups. Mommy doesn't do Teacups!


She likes to keep us on track.


Cade was afraid to approach all of the characters, except for Mickey. He loved Mickey.