Tuesday, October 28, 2014


Tonight Leo got his first home bath. 


He's possibly slightly cleaner than he was before the bath, but I don't think he smells clean enough to make all that effort worth it. 

I was definitely wetter than I was before his bath, but it's doubtful I smelled any cleaner. 

It is 





to keep the dog in the bathtub, get him washed and rinsed, towel-dried and then sort of blow-dried. 

I thought the dog shampooing places were expensive before, but now I'm pretty sure they're worth almost every penny. 


Leo has discovered shadows. His reaction ranges from furious barking to attacking to chasing the shadows. He just can't figure out what they are. 

At Mac's football game tonight I stood in the glow of a light that cast my very long, very perfect (down to my hoop earrings) shadow. Leo went wild. If I moved my head, he pounced. If I took 2 steps, he crouched and attacked.  

This went on for a long time. Longer than most would've found it engaging. 

We are so easily entertained around this joint. 

10-25-14 to 10-26-14

I flew down to South Carolina for a quick overnight trip to attend Camp Meeting. 

If you've never been to a Camp Meeting, it's very hard to describe. The one my family attends started 220 years ago as a Methodist revival in the days of the circuit-riding preachers. Then and now families gather in rustic cabins with pine straw on the floor and no electricity or plumbing. There are still church services three times daily during this one week of the year but it's also a wonderful celebration of family, friends and good food. 

It's one of my favorite events of the year and the one I miss the most when we're overseas because there is simply no way to duplicate or even attempt to imitate Camp Meeting. 

I'm so thankful - so incredibly thankful - to have had these 2 days there. 


Because we're dog owners now and I've gone back to work, we've had to put a dog walker on the family payroll. 

Our dog walker lives in our building and she loves Leo. I mean LOVES Leo. 

In much the same way toddlers get daily notes from their preschool teachers about toilet habits, behavior, and food intake, I get a daily text from Liz. 

Proof that my dog walker is better than yours:

So happy and thankful we have Liz in our lives to help with Leo

10-20-14 to 10-23-14

It's remarkable how utterly exhausting this week, my first full week back at work, was. If I could've gotten in the bed every night at 6pm, I probably would've. 

Every day starts at 5:30am. Showers get taken, people get dressed, breakfasts get made and eaten, Leo gets walked, lunches get packed and we all get out the door at 6:55am. 

6:55am used to be a magical time at Casa Story.  Everybody left, and I enjoyed peace and quiet with the Washington Post, Matt Lauer and a cup of coffee. 

Those carefree mornings are but a warm memory now. 

The job's going well enough, and for that I'm thankful. 

Thursday, October 23, 2014


Today we hosted a bbq (that was planned before we knew the forecast called for a blustery high temp of 57, which on our rooftop was more blustery and wind-chill-colder than that). So most of us sat inside while Jimmy tended the grill outside. 

We were able to visit with our dear State Department friends from Brasilia days, private-sector apartment complex buddies from São Paulo, and two contractor guys Jimmy worked with in Afghanistan (and their wives).  Once again, I'm reminded of how precious this life we lead is when we can meet up with such a diverse mix of people from different points in our married life. I wouldn't trade it for anything. 


Mac tried out today for a travel baseball team. There's really nothing more nerve-wracking than watching your child try out for something. It's really an intense time of intensive prayer. 

There are no bad players who try out for travel ball. Mac held his own, but so did everybody else. As Jimmy said, these U12 boys played better than the JV team Jimmy coached 17 years ago. Tough competition. 

We shall see how it goes when the results come out in the next few weeks. Keep your fingers crossed!