Tuesday, December 18, 2012


Jonathan met Santa Clause a couple weeks ago. Not some impostor, though... he met the real Santa, the one that's leaving presents at our apartment five days from today. Who knew his arms were so long and hairy? ;)

Well done, Thanksgiving Point.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

On, Wisconsin! On, Wisconsin!

We have some amazing news:

Fabio accepted an offer from the University of Wisconsin 
and we are moving back to the United States this summer!

Madison, Wisconsin, to be exact. 
And we couldn't be more excited. 

We've just been waiting for the right opportunity to open up: a position that would be continue to be great for Fabio's career in a place we would want to put down roots and raise a family. We're generally picky people, so it was kind of a tall order, but Madison feels like the perfect fit.

We can't wait to be closer to our family, to have hot water in our kitchen, to shop at Target and Costco, and to be in a place that felt so, so right when we visited. We're excited to live in the Dairy Land (We LOVE cheese!). We're excited to be in the midwest where people are so nice and thoughtful and hardworking. We're excited to have a house and a yard and a garden. We're excited to have four seasons. I could go on about a hundred more things, but we won't subject you to the entire long, long list.

We will say that most importantly, of course, we think Jonathan's going to make an amazing Badgers fan.

(He flexes his muscles when we say "Go Badgers!")

Bottom line: if you are hoping to use us as a base for amazing Asia travel, you better get on it. As always, we'd love to have you!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Watermelon Chairs

A couple months ago, I came home to these honeys:

No, your eyes are not deceiving you. That is, in fact, a chair with pink upholstery and black seeds printed on, patterned after the inside of a watermelon. Two of them, to be exact.

I had an assignment one night at our church, and I left Jonathan and Fabio home to hang out for a couple hours. I thought maybe they would read some books, watch one of Jonathan's little movies, or maybe go on a walk or play on the playground by our building. Instead, they bought furniture. Bazaar, ugly furniture.

When I walked through the door, Fabio greeted me with an unusually proud smile, then stepped aside so I could see his victory.

"Look what I bought today!"

At this point I thought he was pulling some sort of joke, so I played along.

"They are amazing! Where did you find them?!?"
"Our neighbors downstairs were selling them. Only $30 for the set! And they even helped me carry them up to our place. Pretty awesome, huh?"

It was at that point I began to come to the awful realization that he really was proud of himself and he really did buy them... on purpose. So I ask the million-dollar-question:

"Where are you planning on putting them?"
"In the family room..." he answered as if it should be obvious.

Not the answer I was hoping for, although the odds of him saying "the garbage!" were admittedly slim.

"How about the patio instead?"
"Well... I guess, but then we wouldn't use them as often."
Our usage of these probably has very little to do with location, I think to myself.

But Fabio was flexible and sweet, and agreed to move them to the front patio for him and Jonathan to enjoy.

It didn't take long for Fabio come home from work one night and say, "Katie, those are the ugliest chairs I have ever seen. Why did I buy two of them? And why did you let me put them on the patio?!?"

We laughed for a really long time and then I called Good Will. They do home pick-ups for furniture here. On the online form to request a pick-up, there is a space for a description of the goods you are donating.

"One California King bed frame, one small box of gently-used baby boy clothes,
and two pink watermelon chairs."

The guys came to pick the stuff up, and asked what, exactly, I meant by "pink watermelon chairs." I pointed, their eyebrows raised. They chuckled, nodded, and took them away. 

And the age of telling people coming over for dinner or birthday parties, "You'll know you're here because there are two pink watermelon chairs on the front patio" came to a close. I have to admit, though, I definitely got my $30 worth.