Other Pages of Interest

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Two Years, and a Little More

I have written on my to-do list "write annual end-of-year blog", however when I searched for my previous end-of-year blogs, I realized that I have never actually written one.  I wrote about our first full year in our apartment, but that anniversary has come and gone.  Ironically, this sums up my 2011, great intentions, mildly delayed follow through.

So, welcome to my first annual end-of-year blog, signifying the end to our second (full) year in Buenos Aires.  And what a year it was.  We had a baby, we took a zillion (actually 8) international flights, we had lots of visitors - expected and surprise, took fewer internal trips but we have big plans to do more in 2012, we bought a car.  And the most asked question of 2011: "How much longer do you guys think you'll be in Argentina?" has a slightly more defined answer now: "Longer".

It's always so much easier to reflect on the year in a post of photos, hopefully your 2011 causes you to look back with a smile, as ours does.

2011 contained some of our highest highs, here are some of the things I am most grateful for in the last year:

  • The clear frontrunner, the birth of our daughter Gretchen:
Our precious little peanut, 2 weeks old
Coming home for the first time as a family of 3
  • Having a great circle of friends locally that helped us prepare for, and then welcome home our baby girl:
The ladies responsible for our wonderful Buenos Aires baby shower
  • Watching our parents meet their granddaughter for the first time, and watching them transform from parents of adult children to doting grandparents in the blink of an eye:
Grammy and Papa with Gretchen in March
Poppa and Gran with Gretchen in April
  • Seeing our brothers all find their way into being Uncles.  These big, strong men turn into tender baby-charmers as soon as she is around:
Uncle Chris holding a sleeping Gretchen in June
Uncle Robbie explaining the remote control at Christmas
Uncle Dan holding Santa's little helper Christmas Day
Uncle Ted is all smiles with Gretchen in October
  • Being able to spend so much time with our families this year, especially during the holidays:
Christmas dinner in Lexington with the Gill Family
Christmas Eve in Clifton with the Giorgiani Family (and Frodo)
  •  Being able to spend time with friends during our trips home, and watching 2 couples that are very close to us say "I do":
Dan and Lian's wedding in June
Sarah and Josh's wedding in August
The Virginia Tech guys together in October
Gretchen meeting many of our friend's children in June
  • Being able to travel to places I never would have known if we didn't live in Buenos Aires:
Jon and I in Salta in December
Gretchen and Daddy at Temaiken Biopark in September
Our family at La Candelaria in July
  •  Celebrating my first Mother's Day:
A chilly May Mother's Day
  • And having great friends to help us celebrate the other holidays in the year:
Us with the Newhooks and the Lorangers
  •  Watching our family grow:

  • And sharing where we live with friends that come to visit: 
Jon and I with the Patnos and the Axelrods that visited in July
My college roommate Sandy that stopped by during her vacation in BA
 And though every year as an expat we are forced to bid farewell to great friends that move away...

With Anso and Paul that moved back to France in February
The Dooleys and their trio that are starting their next adventure in Mexico
We are thankful for the friendships we have made and the experiences that we have had.  We hope for another great year abroad filled with lots of visits from friends and family, new friends, and many more story worthy events.

Happy New Year, and best wishes for a happy and healthy 2012!


  1. Hi Dawn! I've been reading your blog for a couple of months now! This post really lifted my spirits. I will be moving back to Buenos Aires next month after living 10 years in the States and I'm really thrilled... scared, but very excited. I am planning on making my year an excellent one and your experiences help me feel more confident that my move will only bring the best of experiences. Cheers :) -Julia

    1. Thanks Julia! I'm glad that you've found it helpful - if there is anything else I can help you with, or just to have a friendly face when you move back, send me an email! Good luck with your move!

    2. I just might do that! Excited though I am, preparations are pretty nerve-wracking. I will be doing this Inception-style and becoming an expat-within-an-expat. That is to say, I was born in Argentina but having lived from ages 12-22 in the US I have a hard time saying that I am from Argentina. I feel like I will be an expat within my own nation! Hopefully it won't be the case.
      57 days and counting! Yikes!

  2. This is a GREAT post! Might be one of my favorite ones ever :)

  3. I love this post! Hopefully the Mayes family will be adding our names to the 2012 visitor list!