Lilypie Pregnancy tickers

Lilypie Pregnancy tickers


This morning while getting Ava ready for preschool Jared told her, "You are so stinkin cute!" She replied, "Daddy, I'm not 'stinkin' I'm just cute."

Conversation with Ava's pre-school teacher

There are a lot of interesting beliefs here in Armenia. To list a few, they believe that pregnant women should never swim because they will drown their babies; the believe that if you shave a little girls head when she is 3, her hair will grow in thicker and shinier (so you see a lot of bald little girls in the summer time); they believe that sweating causes the flu, and that being cold actually causes the common cold.

Yesterday, when I picked Ava up from pre-school I started talking to her teacher about all the wonderful things the children learned that day. They had a guest speaker come in to talk to them about germs! Ava learned that germs cause sickness. She learned that she should cover her mouth with a tissue when she coughed, and to wash her hands. Important stuff. After her teacher was done recapping the high points of the day, she noticed that Van was not with me. She asked about him, and I replied that he was home sick.

"What is wrong with him?" she asked.
"He has been throwing up," I answered.
"Maybe he ate something bad?" she asked
"No, It has been going on for 2 days, I think he just caught a bug," I replied.
Her response, "Oh, well he probably just got too cold and that is why he is sick."  

Really? REALLY? Did you not listen with your pre-school kids about germs? *Bang head here....

Few Pic's

The following pictures are dedicated to my brother Jon so that he will stop virtually berating me through multiple emails. These are for you...

Van learned about Meditation at school, and thought this was an appropriate place to practice.

While we were waiting for the Police to get to the scene of the accident I noticed how Beautiful Mt Ararat Looked in the distance. 

Ava and Mt Ararat

Hanging out in Hell's Canyon while Jared drilled some new climbing routes

Van, trying to create his "Flame Thrower" (aka a burning stick)

Marine Corps Ball 2010

I am going to write an actual post about the Ball this year, but I'm super tired. So here are a couple of pic's for now, more to come later. I don't want my little brother Jon to yell at me again for not putting anything up. Hahaha Love ya Jon!

All the Marines and Ambassador Yovonovitch

Crashing and Climbing

While following Jared home from work Friday night, I watched as the traffic light turned yellow, separating us, as Jared completed a left turn. Suddenly the car in front of Jared slammed on his brakes, the sound of crunching metal and broken headlights was unmistakeable. Helpless, I watched them pull off to the side of the intersection and impatiently waited for the light to turn green again. I went through the intersection, pulled off in front of Jared, and proceeded to check out the damage. Luckily the damage was minimal; bumpers and lights were the only casualties. But the fun was just beginning: Because we were screwed out of Language training by a particular Master Sergeant that will remain unnamed, we were completely unable to communicate with the driver of the other car. We handed him our accident card that explains in Armenian that we are associated with the American Embassy, and to remain at the scene of the accident until a representative from the Embassy arrives. Even though the card pretty much spelled out the situation, he still tried to communicate with us. My limited Russian only encouraged his attempts at communication. Every time I responded to a word that I was able to pick out, he would talk more and more, expecting me to understand. I'd shake my head, and he would start over with the words he knew I understood. Unfortunately for us, I was unable to suddenly grasp the meaning of the words he repeated, even when they were said LOUDER and s l o w e r.  Finally I called one of my good friends and she translated over the phone. Then our friend Ashot showed up and made friends with everybody! We were all laughing and bonding by the time the Embassy Rep showed up. Ashot and the other driver were joking that because we worked at the Embassy, we could just give the Driver 2 green cards and everything would be ok. We laughed and the drivers friend said, (through translation from Ashot) "Hey my car is over there, will you hit my car too so that I can get some green cards?" They were pretty funny. Anyway, we got that mess all figured out.

The next day we decided to take a trip out of the city to one of our favorite climbing spots - Hell's canyon. We had one of our friends, Mkhitar, with us. We were driving through a mountain pass when suddenly a car came cruising around a curve, crossing the painted lane divider line.  Jared swerved to the right, avoiding a head-on collision, but the other car still sideswiped us. The mirror was ripped off, the drivers side door was dented, scratches went down the length of the car and rear bumper was cracked. Awesome. The other car was a brand new Nissan Prada. There are really two types of cars in Armenia. The first type is about 20 years old and drives about 40 MPH tops. This is the majority of cars that are seen driving the streets of Armenia. The other type belongs to the top echelon of society here, the ridiculosly rich Al En Garte families. (I have no idea how to spell that and after googling unsuccessfully for the past 1/2 hour, gave up and wrote out the phonetic spelling.) This car decidedly belonged to the later of the two groups. There was no joking or smiling during the LONG process ahead of us. We were an hour and a half out of the city. We called the Marine Post at the Embassy, and they dispatched an Embassy rep for the second time in less than 24 hours. About 45 minutes later, the local policeman arrived on site and started sketching the scene. In the meantime, the Armenians called some of their friends to come "help" the situation. When the Mercedes pulled up with a 44pu444 license plate, we knew things were quickly heading out of our favor. (The very rich and "persuasive"  members of society (read mafia) have signature license plates with repeating numbers. For instance the Presidents brother has a license plate with all 7's. )  One of the 44 guys took the policeman aside and started talking to him. Mkhitar told us that he was trying to get the policeman to see things his way. (read BRIBE) Our Embassy Rep was still not there, and we were starting to sweat. Finally after what felt to be an eternity, our Rep Alex showed up and things drastically turned around. Turns out, because we were in the depths of Armenian village country, the policeman was not aware of the term Diplomatic Immunity. He wanted to take Jared down to the police station and give him a blood alcohol test. Because, you know, I'm sure that they washed the needle after poking the last guy.... Alex explained the terms of Diplomatic Immunity and calmly stated that we would indeed NOT be accompanying him to the local Police station to be held heavens knows how long. Rather than opening a can of worms from the American Embassy, the police officer wisely chose to write the report according to the facts and not according to Mr Deep Pockets from the 4's. After he reched that decision the rest of the process went very quickly and we finished the afternoon climbing in Hell's Canyon. Jared even drilled a new route which he aptly named "Sideswipe."

After navigating Yerevan city traffic without the use of a drivers side mirror, we arrived safe at home. What a weekend.


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