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I still wait for Immigration. Maybe next week…

Until then, I have been busy. WITH FUN STUFF! It has been so bitterly cold outside, you just can’t go there anymore. I’m serious. It’s dangerous. It was 23 degrees below Zero when I woke up this morning. That has been typical for this week. It also unfortunately isn’t all that unusual for winter in Central Maine. Despite my love for outdoors, and being outdoors as much as possible (and making sure that Jude is outside as much as possible too) there will be days like this when it just won’t happen. Obviously. So a spacious play area in the house (or the ability to create one) was a MUST as early as when I was I was shopping for a house. This home is small for 4 bedrooms (1,620 square feet) so space is at a premium. But there is an awesome unfinished basement area that is in the final stages of being transformed into my Waldorf-esqe Playroom. I had a small budget for this project (less than $300) so most of what was accomplished was from items I already I had on hand from my Foster Parenting days, awesome lawn sale/craigslist finds (some of them were FREE!), donated items from co-workers and a few key new items from beloved Ikea. We are not done yet, there is a mural that needs to be painted on the walls, but after seeing Jude’s love of art we will probably wait and include her on this project when she is home. So I am debuting the photos of it now. While it is not strictly Waldorf, I love it just the same.

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The Holy Grail of Car Seats arrived last night. Despite literally YEARS of research on this car seat (back as far when the company was called “Sunshine Kids”) this was the first time I had actually seen the seat in person. I was NOT disappointed. It is great. Looks like a flight seat that should be installed on the space shuttle. I trialed fitting it in the 2005 Toyota Prius (despite the bitter cold). It fits perfectly fine both rear facing and forward facing (without the much-talked about angle adjuster) behind the driver’s seat. (I’m 5’7″). For those who, like me had never seen this car seat in person it is very similar in size (if not identical) to the $40 Cosco Scenera that can be found at WalMart and Target. I have had no problems rearfacing the Cosco Scenera in the Prius before. The Diono is a little easier to install (despite the fact that it is heavier). So here is the big news. It will be going to Bulgaria. Still not sure how to safely get it there on the outbound journey (gate-checking hopefully). But it will be Jude’s carseat from the moment we pick her up in Hisarya through the ride back to Sofia then on the Transatlantic flight from Sofia to Boston then again on the nearly 3 hour ride home from Boston. I have also heard that we can attach this car seat to a rolling luggage cart and the resulting contraption operates as a stroller (if we need one). Bonus.

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Shortly before the holidays I ventured up into the attic and dug out the diapers. I LOVE the diapers. And as you might have guessed by now, they are cloth diapers. Ask any Mama who uses cloth (or CD for short Cloth Diapering) and you are bound to find some EXTREMELY strong opinions. CD Mamas love their dipes and are VERY particular. I am no exception. I have used Flips through 2 foster children and cannot imagine using anything else. I struggle with senisitivites to a lot of chemicals used in many disposable diapers so the ones I can tolerate (such as Seventh Generation) are REALLY expensive to use all of the time. I like the Flips because I can use the cloth most of the time and then when I need disposable (such as on a transatlantic flight) they offer a disposable insert that is much less expensive that a full disposable diaper. That said, the cloth can be used in far more places than one would expect (see my photo from seaside camping a few years ago), and our plan in Bulgaria is to hopefully find an Apartment with a Washing Machine so my Flip Diaper stash can come along too.

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Also coming back into commission will be the outlet covers, the baby gates, the ErgoBaby carrier, the booster seat in the dining room, and the bibs. Oh, and on sick days…The complete series of Fraggle Rock on DVD.

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