Friday, November 25, 2011

Over the Ocean and Down Interstate, to Gram's House We Go

We're over here in Budapest, getting all set to watch the LSU - Arkansas game... which has got me somewhat nervous, as Arkansas has, in the past, gotten the best of the tigers in this last game of the season. We're also getting back into the swing of things, after a pathetically short trip home for the holidays. We had to jump on our one opportunity to fly home before the baby is here... which unfortunately meant cutting short our time with our dear Budapest guests, Rachel and Ryan!
We were so excited to have these two cherished friends come see us. It was fun showing them the sights of Budapest and getting some quality time with my precious Rachie. Claudia is especially in love with Rachie and Ryan and can't wait to visit them in Chicago one day. We had to leave Budapest before they did, to maximize our last minute trip to the states, so that part kind of stunk!When we left Budapest, it was below freezing. When we arrived in Houston, it was 85 degrees. I was not prepared for that, but I certainly appreciated the brief break from the cold. Claudia capitalized on the opportunity to plant flowers with Pawpaw.
Then we drove on to Louisiana... where it turned out to be freezing! Claudia got to ride on Paps' fine red tractor, which made her day. Pap's also gave Claudia lots of lessons on life in the country, e.g., how to crack pecans, where corn comes from and how to feed horses. Paps and Mama Kate even got Claudia her own little, red Case tractor. She was very pleased. We also visited the McLendons in Oak Ridge and the Morris family in Bastrop. It was a busy, but very fun trip.
We stopped in Shreveport to spend some quality time with Memaw and even got a special visit from the Mann family who were in town on a weekday... what luck!! Memaw made us lots of country cooking and gave Claudia a piano lesson too. I think this is Claudia's favorite activity with Memaw.
Back in Houston, we had a couple of Thanksgiving dinners, including one at Aunt Debbie and Uncle Matthew's house. We also celebrated Aunt Debbie and Mandi's birthdays. Claudia always manages to blow out everyone's birthday candles. She's collected about twenty different person's birthday wishes this year. Mine's coming up in December; I bet she gets that one too!It was also a treat to see all our friends in Houston. It was pretty funny to get Claudia, Audrey and Max together again. They grow up so fast, but they manage to remember each other and pick up where they left off. Daddy, CC and Paps in Mer RougeClaudia with Daddy and her hair twin, Uncle Otis Lee, in Bastrop
Claudia and Daddy with Greatgrandma and Greatgrandpa McLendon in Oak RidgeCC with Gram and Grandpa in Houston
And finally, our flight home to Budapest.
We managed to squeeze in visits to a bunch of relatives spread out over five cities, the farthest being about seven hours apart, over seven days. It was exhausting, but fun. There were so many more friends and family we wanted to see, but we will just have to wait until next Spring... when we bring our newest McLendon to visit!!


  1. I've been missing you! Glad you had a great visit with family, albeit short:). Love all the pictures!!

  2. Wow - I am tired just thinking about cramming all that into a week! Glad you guys had a good visit, and glad you're back!

  3. Looks like y'all had a great time on your visit. Hope you had a great Thanksgiving!

  4. holy moly! yall covered an incredible amount of ground in your short trip here! you are my HERO...any time i feel tired or lacking energy to do stuff, i will think you- flying halfway around the world with a toddler, and then covering 2 states for visits with friends and family!!


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