Saturday, July 2, 2011

Summer is here!!!!!

Yay for summer! Finally it's here and it has happened before 4th of July.

This spring was the worst i remember. Our temporary solution has been to get out of here before i need to be put on antidepressants from lack of sun. Puorte Vallarta Mexico in April was by far the best family vacation so far. All of us came back with a nice tan. My other escape from the rain was the Itlay trip with my sister to see our sister in Itay. Just being away from everything was priceless.

So here we are. It's July 2nd and we're sticking around. When the weather is in the 70's like today, our little Seahurst Beach feels like a gateway. We are taking full advantage of the beach being so close to it. The kids of-course can't get enough of it. Besa can be in the water until she turns blue and still won't come out. With her cousins Leo and Soley visiting today our little princess turned into a fighting worrier with firing arms. Brisan is being a very typical 2 year old boy. A phase that i wish i could fast forward since it turns out i am not build to accept a lot of screaming, hair pulling and bitting. On the bright side, this kid knows what he wants and will use all methods possible to get it. I can appreciate that ....... up to a certain point : )

Looking forward to a great rest of Summer. If it keeps going at this rate, it will be filled of BBQ's, camping and having lots of family and friends gatherings. Cheers!!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Home with the kids for President's Day!

I just realized how late i post to this blog. After reviewing all the typos from my last post i really need to sit down one day and fix them all. Anyways, i wanted to write about my day with the kids today which we had it all to ourselves thanks to President's day holiday. I realize how little you get to do around the house. Days like this i feel like it belongs to them fully though. So, yes my kitchen floor, you have to wait.

Brisan, the mama's boy demands all of my attention and i am happy to oblige. We talked a lot, played, sang his favorite "ring around the rosie" song about 100 times and shared toys wit Besa like a pro. Besa is getting to play so much better with her brother. Instead of seeing him as an invader of her space, now she will play and come up with games that he can be a part of. They giggled and chased each-other around the house all morning. After Brisan's long morning nap, we went to visit the cousins. Teze Alba had made pitta bread, our favorite and while Brisan emerged into the toys, Besa and Marisa got a little Albanian lesson. They are short of about 4 alphabet letters before they know the Albanian alphabet.

They both have a hard time with the double letters making one sound. That's the reason why our alphabet has 36 letters. The extras: DH, TH, SH, XH, ZH, GJ, NJ,LL. After a good visit, we left Brisan with Tezja and Rei and all us girls went to YMCA to spend a good 2 hours in the adventure zone to come back tomorrow for the family event with kids " the weird science". Can't wait!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

November thru February 2011

Ok! Last blog was in October. Let's start off with November. We took off for our Italy/Albania trip middle of the month. Got delayed at the airport by 2 hours due to a massive snow storm. Our delay of-course made us miss the connecting flights and as much as we thought that was so terrible, the alternative would have been to not have left at all since the airport in Seattle got shut down for 2 days immediately after our take of. The way Brisan handled the flight is something i will never forget. I literally thought i was going to loose my mind. He did not sleep whatsoever fighting it badly. We tried every comforting position, holding, swinging, singing, begging, pleasing and nothing helped. A good 17 hours later we made it to Italy.

After dealing with the main luggage delivered to France in error, we where welcomed from my brother Anest. It was so nice to see him after so long and after such a long trip. After another 2 hour drive we made it home to my sister's. Marta had been so anxious in anticipation. So much has gone by since the last time we had been together. Meeting my adorable nephew for the first time was so special. This distance we have makes me so sad. It's not right that it took 3 years to meet him in person. It was amazing to discover the similarities with Besa. Both, very loving but a bit jealous types. Brisan impressed everyone as always. The time change made him sleep all day and up all night. In case we forgot what it was like to have a newborn, it was a great reminder of those time i don't miss. Our time with my sister and her beautiful family went by way to fast. Between eating amazing food, a lot of sight seeing despite the snow and bad weather, and going to a lot of Parma's Castles, our time was up. We can't wait to visit again soon.

My new life's resolution. Make every effort to go and see family as often as needed. The flight to Albania was quick although we made the flight by the skin of our teeth. The flight was about to take off as we had scrambled to get passed security, which took forever, running from one end of the airport to the other while dragging along 2 kids, one not in the mood to hurry whatsoever. We made it one breath to the counter only to be told we can't go through as the plane is about to take off. I started crying and pleading with them and someone along the many phone calls made must have felt bad. They waited for us. What a relief. Missing it would have meant we would not get to leave until the next day. We finally made it to motherland. It had been 5 and 1/2 years since our last visit. I had missed it so much. The country has changed drastically. The best way to describe that change is this. Picture it like this. About 15 years ago, there was only one local phone line that served 3 towns. Now, if you don't have a facebook account, you are sort of a looser. Laptops and computers in every household. Some of the same issues however, still remain very still fresh. Lack of electricity in smaller towns and villages,bad roads, high unemployment and extremely high prices for everything is a painful reminder how much there still needs to change.

My parents seemed at home and i found that very comforting. Despite their broken hearts, they seemed at home which made me realize that the states is absolutely not the place for them long term. With my brother's memorial coming up, the house was constantly filled with visitors. Being in the house with what had happened was extremely hard for me. I really did not want to see anyone except spend time with my parents and our family. That was not bound to happen. I had this phantasy in my had that my brother's passing was just something that happened to other people and that i'd get to meet him once we got there. It simply SUCKS! I wanted to kiss, and hold him and say so many things but i never got the chance and i have only myself to blame. He never got to meet Besa or Brisan, Joni or any of his nieces. What a shame. I would give the world for one more chance. To this day, i refuse to think of Krenar as passed away. He is in my heart and thoughts everyday and will always be and shape how what i value in life the most. That very decision is what made the rest of our time in Albania better. We got to see where he rests and i know that he rests in peace.

In an effort to avoid the non stop visitors to the house, which is culturally expected and accepted, not by me really, we took a lot of day trips. Made it all the way to Saranda one day despite the windy road being tough on the kids. We ate out almost every meal as i got obsessed with the food. It was simple, local, traditional and delicious that all of us could not get enough. It became our daily adventure. Where we would eat next. The weather held up beautifully. It was middle of winter and never wore a coat until the last 2 days which we spent in Tirana. Orikum had changed so much so that it had become unrecognizable. Because of it's location so close to the water yet, minutes to the very popular national park Llogara, everyone seemed to want a piece. The place was over flooded with condos and town homes where most of the investors where outsiders. We where told that during the summer, it's gets so busy that people rent our rooms from their own residence to keep up with the demand.

My heart thought kept taking us to our village where i grew up. With the road fixed up nicely, we went there for lunch everyday to eat the restaurant run by a neighbor we grew up with. Fresh goat meat everyday. We ordered double the order each time. I can go back for a meal there again tonight. Our total time in Albania was about 2 weeks. Next time we go back, Brisan has to be at least 3 and 1/2 years old. Besa was a breeze flying on the way back. Brisan made me look like a horrible mother. I kept asking for more wine to numb down how much i wanted to scream. During the 12 hours of non stop flying he slept zero hours, fussing the entire time. The frustration of that flight is still so fresh in my mind ever 3 months later. Coming home was a relief. Back to a normal life, busy crazy but predictable life is not a bad thing. It took a month actually to catch up with kids's school, schedules, bills and all kinds of other non sense.

It is February now and we feel ready for another vacation. Even though winter for some reason feels kind of short this year and not as depressing as usual, we still crave sun this time of year hence a little one week vacation to Mexico in April. We are going with our friends that have children same age as ours which will be perfect as we will take turns in child care so Ben and I can spend some time alone and just soak up some sun uninterrupted by our lovely kids.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Brisan and His Mami all on their own for the weekend.

What a treat! As much as we miss Besa and Ben, we are having a great time on our own. I have been wanting to spend time one on one with Brisan for a long time and it finally happened at 13 months old. Ben and Besa are in Omak for a little weekend visit with the grandparents while Brisan is starting to love the extra attention that is hard to give while with both kids. I made it my mission to do nothing else but be with him. We started off with sleeping in bed together, sleeping in actually until almost 10 am.

After an hour of playing in Besa's room and making a hot mess in there we decided to eat a nice breakfast to quickly follow by a nap. He must realized i was all for him because he fell a sleep for his nap in my arms and that never happens. I was happy to let him sleep there until my arms went numb and was forced to transfer him in his own bed. Three hours later, which is by far the longest nap taken since a little baby we went on a walk with a friend and he fell asleep again for another 2 hours in the baby carrier while been walked around.

The house is so quiet though and we do miss the rest of the family. We have facetimed each-other on our fancy iPhones but i want then noise, and giggles and laughters back.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tuesday, October 19th

It's been a pretty smooth couple of days. Tomorrow is Wednesday and a day off from work for me. It will be the first Wednesday in probably 5 years that i truly don't have anything marked on the calendar to do. Yay! I still have a hard time letting free time be free and that would explain why there's been a lot of bread baking, cake making, chocolate chip cookies for at home and the office, inviting new neighbors for dinner, reconnecting with old friends and eating some more.

The eating is all guilt free as we do make it to the gym about 5 days a week now. Besa loves the activities provided there for her age while i get to burn the extra calories i've injected my body. It's not Ben's favorite place to go as public workout places just turn him off but when he decides to join us we get to hit the pool as well. Besa has improved her swimming so much more in just the last couple of weeks.

She swims comfortably on her own with the little life jacket on. Brisan does not like the water as much and will turn blue in less than half an hour in it. He'd rather be held which i'm happy to do at anytime. On a very unrelated note, i just realized Obama visited Seattle today encouraging voters to draw contrast. I am looking forward for November 2nd so that negative non stop TV attack adds can be over with. To you Republican friends and all: Hell to the NO. Your R truly stands for Reverse.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Just another perfect day

Surprisingly, at 11:00 at night after an evening of non stop work since the time i got home from work, i have energy to sit down and reminisce about the day. The day started pretty smoothly. Get up early, get kids ready for preschool/daycare, drop them off, start a good work day at work and so on. Brisan had a great day at daycare, always flirting with the ladies making him a favorite among all of his teachers. It's so comforting to see him reach for them when we go in the morning. Still he cries when i leave but i hear he recovers quick. The evening hours get a little tough. When we get home, both kids are tired, cranky and hungry.

Brisan can barely keep his eyes open while i scramble to cook his meal, feed and get him ready for bed. Besa on the other hand is on a different agenda. While eating is not on her list, she likes to be in the kitchen and play with her brother as i'm feeding him. I try hard to nicely explain how it makes my job very hard with her in our face, but i may as well be explaining it to the wall. Tonight especially she decided that since she is not eating, Brisan would be her toy and stuff toys on his high chair and tease him.

Let's just say that the action i took, which involves the threat of "the garage" made her understand the meaning of bad choices have bad consequences. I'm not exactly proud of my garage method but i feel it's better than some other methods. I was saddened a little when she asked Ben instead of me to read her in bed for the night. Obviously the parenting choices have consequences for me too : ) Ben really enjoys reading to her and i think she may notice a slight accent from me so it could be a technical preference anyways. Although, Ben just told me that he read to her in Albanian, so go figure. All and all, well taken care of kids, well fed, lots of play time, well fed adults, exhausted mami and babi, makes for a perfect perfect day for me.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Brisan's One Year Check up!

Just for fun, I am going to compare the stats of Brisan and Besa at one year old. We all know Brisan is an eater so no surprise there. Besa was only 17 pound at one year VS little brother at 23 pounds. Weight falls at 50th percentile whereas height at 60th percentile. Not as high as I expected. Besa’s was taller in proportion with her body weight.

What has given me a scare is the size of the head which now has jumped off the chart and is concerning his Doctor. I am researching myself to death finding out about possibilities ranging from nothing, just a big headed baby to massive brain issues. Not taking any chances even though Brisan is flourishing with every aspect of growing up. We’re going in as soon as our crappy insurance authorizes the referral to Swedish. Results to be posted soon.