December was a busy, busy month which began with Nate’s trip to Singapore for TMAI’s Asia/Pacific Symposium (related to The Master’s Seminary in Southern CA, which Nate attended). He was gone for five days, and I stayed home alone with the kids and…Samson! We’re doggy-sitting a white labrador retriever while his owners, the Putrakals, are in the States. It was perfect timing–Samson coming to live with us the same day that Nate left on his trip. I definitely felt more safe with the huge lab who immediately began his role as protector of our home. Nate was home for a few days before we left on a short trip to Bangkok, and then we were back in Phnom Penh for a fun Christmas party with play group, the ACTION Cambodia team dinner and go karts, Christmas caroling at our house, and then Christmas Eve was upon us, which of course meant our traditional dinner and then staying up late to finish the preparations for the next day. Christmas Day was spent at our home, and then bright and early on December 26th, we headed out with friends to enjoy the beauty of the Cambodian province of Mondulkiri. We were there a few days before rushing back to participate in the Christmas celebration at Shalom Phnom Penh (our Khmer church), where I was privileged to sing “Joy to the World” (in Khmer) with the older ladies of the church. We spent a quiet New Year’s at home and then…Sua s’daye 2013!
Here are several of these December memories, though I’ll include some of the more noteworthy events in additional posts (soon to come!):
Watching the Grinch
My sleeping little one with her Angelina
Watching the Nutcracker
Paton doing his best arabesque
Sleeping near the tree with the nutcracker
Paton wants it…
…and Ava’s not too happy about it.
Ava’s attempt at “3” (the one on the left, in case you’re wondering ;)
Making the “Wells Family” gingerbread cookies
Decapitating an odd almond-flavored pink pig dessert from The Shop Too. It reminded me of the fetal pigs from anatomy class
Ava eating the pig’s head
Getting into the Christmas spirit
The Christmas Fair at Street 240
Running into friends at Mekong quilts
Santa looks a little different in Cambodia…
Paton was amused
Choosing a chocolate at The Shop
Enjoying roasted chestnuts and chocolates
Ava intently drawing…
…us! This may be the first time that she drew our family.
Walking to Coffee Grounds with Samson
Ava loves Samson, and calls him “Lion”
Goodbye party for the Putrakuls (Samson’s owners). We miss you already!
The odds are definitely in Ava’s favor…
Paton wanted to wear his sister’s dress when he saw that she was donning one.
Blackmail pictures–for the record, Dad was not at home
He loves the camera
The fun bird pen and lovely journal that Nate brought back for Ava from Singapore
Making cookies with play group at our house
Making more cookies with friends!
Ava was in cookie heaven.
Paton wants to make some too
Yes, I took a picture of my messy kitchen
Mother-daughter pedicures–Christmas tree and snowman
Matching red nails
Christmas party with the play group. Thanks for hosting, Ingrid!
Thanks, Karen, for the craft…
…and, Jess, for the storytime
Little buddies–Paton and Noel
Ava’s first time with stencils
Great job, Little A!
Yes, our son is placing a soccer ball into a pink purse.
Off to our team’s Christmas dinner
An annual Christmas tradition…pork knuckle!
You’ll have to ask Greg and BJ about this gift…
The lovely ladies
The gallant guys
The post caroling-around-the-neighborhood party.
Ava helping Paton with an early Christmas gift
A new Christmas tradition for our team…go karts!
Jodi and I racing around a corner
So much fun!
The kids played on a little playground and we enjoyed the lush grass
Ava and Judah jumping
Uncle Daren and Paton
The kids opening gifts from each other
Christmas Eve Day–Fun shopping with Christina at the Russian Market.
A package from family! (the Chens)
They both loved Paton’s gift–“Mr. Potato Head”
We turned around and P had Ava’s skirt on his head