Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

We had a very wonderful and quiet Christmas this year. Just the four of us. It was actually kind of nice. The only bummer is we didn't get to go sledding because of the blizzard. And it is a doozy. I don't remember in my whole life having a blizzard on Christmas day.
Wow look at all the presents...and we actually missed a few that were in Hannah's pile.
Hannah made out pretty good too.
Yes, Hannah got a violin for Christmas. She has been wanting to play the violin since she was 2.
Hannah's quote of the day. I am so impressed with my gifts but especially my violin.

I got Ron a kids race car set. We were all so bumbed as it required
C cell batteries and we had none and it is like the worst blizzard in forever so no racing today.
Do you think he liked it????


Wednesday, December 23, 2009


Hannah's Mini Dance Performance.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Happy Readoption Day

Today was our day in court to readopt Mahlet. She is now officially a U.S. citizen and recognized as our daughter by the U.S. courts. Her name was changed from Mahlet Ronald to Mahlet Maleah. In Ethiopia the child take the dad's first name as their middle. This caused a little confusion with our attorney as he thought we had adopted a boy. It was so funny as neither our attorney of the judge could pronounce her name correctly. But it doesn't matter the decree is signed and it's a done deal. We will now get a U.S. birth certificate and can apply for her passport so we can go to Jamaica in March.

It was kind of funny timing as I got my reminder letter today that I begin jury duty Jan. 1st and I ended up in the very court room I will be serving in.


Saturday, December 19, 2009

Ho Ho Ho

Mahlet & Hannah had visiting with Santa last night.
I was impressed with this Santa. He really looked the part. Some Santa's can look so cheesy.
After the Santa visit we checked the lights at the big park by our home.
I just thought this was a cool pic.

They had live animals for the kids to enjoy at the visitors center.
The camel doesn't seem to too impressed with little Ms. Hannah


Thursday, December 17, 2009


Mahlet's Scchool had it's Christmas program today. It was fun seeing all the children so excited to perform.

The gym was decorated with art projects. The 5th graders made gigantic snowmen.
Mahlet with her teacher. Mrs. O

Hi MOM!!!

The girls had fun playing in the snow yesterday. The temps finally warmed up to above zero so they could actually get outside.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Busy Busy Busy

Things have been so busy this month it has been hard to keep up with the blog. I finally finished the Christmas letter and this year's was by far the hardest to write. So much has changed in our family over the past 8 months I didn't know how to edit it all. But it's finally done and the cards are in the mail.
I feel like have spent almost the whole half of this month at the dentist/oral surgeon. I feel like I should just get a room there. Between me, Mahlet and Hannah we have been to the dentist 6 times in the last two weeks. I had a few cavities to be fixed, Mahlet had two (which I was really worried about how that would play out...laughing gas is our friend), Hannah had a check up and X-Rays which she was a super star at sitting still (if you know Hannah you know what I mean). I also finally got my dental implant put in. I have been trying to get this done for almost 2 yrs. and something has always stopped it from happening. The last being our travel to Ethiopia. But am so thankful that it never happened as now insurance will cover some of the is very expensive. OK enough about boring stuff.
One of Hannah's preschool friends (Jenna) hosted a Gingerbread House making party today. Mahlet was invited to help. Shh the houses are really made of graham crackers.
This is Mahlet's house. I looked for a door but found none...I think you would have to crawl throuh the life saver??????
Hannah's GB House
Reminder that she is a gift from GOD.
Funny photo of Ron decorating the tree. It looks like it wants to fly out the window.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Happy Birthday Hannah

I cant believe my baby is 5 years old. She had a great day sharing treats with her friends at preschool. I surprised her with some balloons as the end of her class and took her to McDonalds for a birthday lunch. We are just doing a quiet family party tonight with Pizza and cake. We had a party for her in the Cities this past weekend with Aunts and Uncles.


Monday, November 23, 2009

Upward Cheerleading

It was a big UPWARD celebration tonight. So much fun. Molly loved cheerleading and she was the loudest voice. We had our name drawn for a free season for UPWARD. We are blessed and maybe will have to find a family that needs it more than us...but it was fun to finally win something.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Hannah was the leader at preschool today and she was so happy that she got to take her Aunt Trish who is visiting from Lexington, KY.
Hannah in her Christmas dress (Molly has a matching one). We took family pictures yesterday and the girls looked so pretty. I can't wait to see the proofs. Molly was little Ms. model the entire time...that child never takes a bad photo. Hannah on the other hand, is a nightmare...can't sit still and is nearly impossible to give a natural smile.

Last night Molly had Jump Rope for Heart. She came home with the top fundraiser trophy for 5th grade city wide. I was so impressed with this kid. When she came home with her fundraising packet. She couldn't wait to hit the streets (our neighborhood) asking for pledges. I'm an adult and speak English and am afraid to ask for money from people I know. This kid went out all by herself and and raised in amazing amount of money. Way to go Molly!!!!

The following is an email I received from Molly's teacher...brought tears to my eyes. I am so proud of this child.
Molly did an excellent job of explaining her Winter Count of her first 10 months here. She did all the talking herself and explained every picture. Katy only helped her with the word flag. The children all understood her and I was so proud of them as they all spontaneously clapped for her when she finished. It was such a wonderful moment, I wish you both could have seen it. She grinned from ear to ear. She shared her pictures with me also and was able to explain everything in them. She has come so far already. I thought this might make your day. :)
Wanda Ottenbacher

Yes that made my day!!!!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

What's Up

So what's been going on with us lately. Ron's sisters were able to visit Molly's school on Thursday. Molly was so excited to introduce them to whoever was around after school. They visited her classroom and met her teacher and saw all the projects she is working on. I actually learned a little more about Molly's days at school than when we had conferences. It was kind of funny because there were a couple of pictures on front of the teacher's desk that Molly had drawn for her and one had something written in Amharic. I asked Molly what it said and she wouldn't tell me and her teacher said she won't tell her either...hmmm?

Today was a big day for Hannah at swimming lessons. She got to jump off the diving board. And if you know Hannah she is little Ms. NO FEAR. She went up and jumped with all her might and them swam back to the wall (the instructor wasn't even in the water to help out). Her big sister and the other moms were so impressed at how brave she was as she is the youngest by far in the class and the only one that wasn't scared to jump. So she did it 3 more times. I asked Molly if she would jump and she just screamed like a baby "NO...Hannah so good". Hannah is the star student of her class. She only has one lesson left in this session. I'm so proud of her.

This afternoon we spent some time with Grandpa & Aunt Trish. Hannah danced, Molly and Trish practiced some cheer leading and we all sang Hannah's songs she will be singing in church tomorrow. Of course Aunt Trish (retired teacher but always in teacher mode) had to make a lesson out of the songs (Pledge of Allegiance & God Bless America). It was kind of funny as she was trying to explain to Molly what the words meant because she would use one word to describe another and it was a word that Molly still didn't Allegiance means loyalty...What???? Do you see the picture I'm painting for you? I don't know how much Molly got out of the whole patriotic lesson...but that's OK as she's still not a US citizen.

That is about it for now so you all have a great weekend.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I Need Africa More than Africa Needs Me

What are you willing to do to make a difference?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Veterans Day

Hannah's Cherub Choir honored the Veterans at church on Sunday. Hannah has known the pledge since she was two but when she gets up on that stage with 3 huge projection screens to watch herself on she gets a bit distracted.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

This & That

Halloween 2009

The week is winding down to what is supposed to be a beautiful weekend with highs hopefully in the 70s (YES). We so need some nice weather. October was one of the most sunless, rainy and gloomy months I've ever experienced in South Dakota.

This past week found us in our first parent/teacher conferences as we are now parents of a 10yr. old that is in the 5th grade. We heard very good comments about Molly. They are amazed at her progress. Her ESL teacher also had wonderful things to say about Molly which didn't surprise us. Molly is the oldest student in the ESL program in the school district so she tends to be the mother hen on the bus they all take to ESL. We were told by the ESL teacher that Molly always reports how the other children are feeling (emotionally) that morning.

Today brought good news that I've been stressed about for over a week. I had a mammogram last week that didn't come back with clear results. So today I went back and had my right tata squished/compressed like a pancake from every angle that I can recall from geometry, and I'm happy to say I'm OK.


Sunday, November 1, 2009