So I have been pretty overwhelmed lately by the catching up I have to do on The Amazing Adventures of Anne Kathleen. Every time I sit down to write, I don’t know where to start because we have done so much. So instead of staring at the many posts I have started to draft and not knowing where to pick up, I have decided that today I will share all the places our little Annie has been in her first ten months. Yes, tomorrow Annie will be 10 months! I can’t believe it, it feels like yesterday we were bringing her home from the hospital.
In her first ten months, Annie has been on 15 flights. Yes, FIFTEEN. Eight of these flights have been over the Atlantic Ocean. She’s pretty much a professional by now. On her last trip back to the States for Christmas, toward the end of the flight, one of the flight attendants stopped by and said “Well, this MUST be this little lady’s second flight, I’ve never seen a baby so well-behaved on such a long trip before.” When I responded, “No, it’s her fourteenth,” the attendant’s jaw just fell to the floor. Whether it’s because she has lots of practice or just because that’s how our Annie is, she has not once fussed or cried on any of these flights. Knock on wood! She is a magnificent traveler and we need to keep it that way.
I will be posting about each of these places and our time there for my future posts. But for now, here’s Annie’s travel log….
In May Annie traveled to the Abruzzo region of Italy, one of the country’s most mountainous regions, east of Lazio, the region in which we live where Rome is located.
In June, Annie got to visit her mom’s favorite town in the Umbrian region of Italy: Orvieto.
When Annie was almost three months, on June 24th, she made the trip to the United States for the first time. She spent almost two months in Chicago.
In the beginning of August, Annie made her first road trip. She rode through Indiana, Ohio, and ended up in Annville, Pennsylvania, where she stayed for two weeks before her drive back to Chicago for her final week in the States. While in PA, she also ventured down to Baltimore to see the White Sox beat up on the Orioles, and to spend time with her aunt and uncle.
Annie was 5 months when she returned to her home in Rome. A couple weeks later she was on the Orientation buses with our students to travel to Todi, Spoleto, Gubbio, and Perugia in the Umbrian region of Italy, north of Lazio.
When she was 6 months, in October, she flew back to Chicago for her Great-grandfather’s Memorial Mass.
Two weeks later she was on her way to Poland, where she visited Warsaw, Krakow, and Torun.
In November, she flew back to Chicago for three weeks for her mom’s best friends’ wedding and got to spend her first Thanksgiving in Chicago.
In December, she flew to Philadelphia to spend ten days with her PA family. Although her IL family decided to meet her there for a few days.
On the 15th of January, Annie joined the students for a taste of Tivoli and visited Villa d’Este.
She spent a long weekend from January 20-22, on another orientation trip to the Almalfi Coast where she visited Salerno, Pasteum, Agropoli, and Sorrento.
This girl has been on every form of transportation one could think of. Buses, trains, airplanes, boats, cars. She’s visited museums, aquariums, art galleries, baseball stadiums, castles, mountains, seas, ancient ruins, farms, and fortresses. She received the sacrament of Baptism at St. Peter’s Basilica and has danced to the traditional live music of Napoli. She’s strolled past the Pantheon on many occasions, checked out the Roman Forum, the Colosseum, and Trevi Fountain. She’s gone for a dip in the Mediterranean, gazed upon historic works of art, and sat in the old town center of the once devastatingly war torn Warsaw. She attended Mass in glorious cathedrals, watched the buffalo at a buffalo mozzarella farm, visited universities in the States, Poland, and, of course, here in Rome. She has sat on the Spanish Steps and taken in the views of magnificent hill towns and seaside cities.
I feel so blessed that we get to share the world with her. But I feel even more blessed that we get to share her with the world. Everywhere we go, EVERYONE falls in love with our precious baby girl.
Some people think that having a child with Down Syndrome alters the quality of life for the parents and the child. So far, I think her life and ours has been pretty darn quality if you ask me. Just look at where she’s been!