After a wonderful Christmas in California, we laid low for a while, focusing on Dan getting his last semester of graduate school done. In the spring we decided to take a vacation to visit Dan's brother John and his family in Utah. It was a fun and eventful two weeks. We went to a BYU basketball game, senior night no less, and saw Jimmer play. It was a blast. To my disappointment, Elon my sister in law, who was very pregnant, did not go into labor while I was there. The cousins had a fun time together and got to celebrate Austin's 2nd Birthday with him.
After that trip we squeezed in a trip to South Beach Florida with the the other members of the McGowan Fellowship. It was really beautiful there, and we loved getting to know the other Fellows and their spouses. It was fun to let loose and go dancing with the group in the evening, eat amazing cuban food during the day, and lounge on white sand beaches the rest of the time.
Soon after returning home we received the news that we would be moving to Brandon Mississippi for Dan's first rotation location. I quickly found a home and we prepared for our move. At the end of April, Dan finished his program. We decided to leave Pittsburgh before his graduation ceremony since it was two weeks later. Dan was anxious to begin his vacation in the south! Despite his wishes, I threw him a surprise graduation party. He finished at the top of his class. We are very proud of him.
On our drive to Miss, we went through Kentucky, Tenn, Alabama, and finally entered Mississippi. What a beautiful part of the country. In true Kruse form we only listened to country music the whole way down to prepare for our new southern lifestyle. We ate southern food, and explained to Ava why everyone "talked funny". We drove through Tornado ravaged Alabama and taught Ava a valuable lesson, "stuff doesn't matter, only people". She got it loud and clear as we toured the hardest hit areas where entire neighborhoods were leveled. After arriving in Miss, Dan joined a group of men and traveled back to Alabama to help in the tornado clean up. It was a good way to start off our first time being in a brand new house. It is a pretty big change going from a 100 year old two bedroom apartment (literally) to a 100 year newer three bedroom home. I ran screaming with joy through the house when we got there. Just having a washer and dryer made my year! The girls love our fenced in backyard, and so do I:) We enjoy riding bikes through our neighborhood, playing in the kiddie pool, and visiting the YMCA as a family.
Since Dan had almost two months till he started work, we decided to go on a celebratory cruise. Dan found an amazing deal for the whole family on a Carnival cruise to the Bahamas. It was a blast! The girls enjoyed swimming, dancing and eating! Ava ordered "juicy steak" as she called it nearly every evening. Katrina tried sushi for the first time and loved it! Forget the kids menu for these two. Dan's going to need a nice salary to keep up with Ava and Kat's taste in food! The girls gained a reputation on the ship for there dancing skills. More than once Katrina had a crowd around her cheering her on. It was so neat being able to reconnect as a family after a grueling MBA program. It was a trip to remember.
Since the cruise we have been getting settled in the house. Dan and I have enjoyed doing projects together, included making an alligator toy box and a headboard for Ava. We have had fun decorating the house together. Soon after arriving, we bought Kat and Ava guinea pigs. "Princess" and "Baby" have been very sweet little pigs for the girls. They are very good with them, despite the girls ages.
I think that is all the major updates except for one, I am pregnant! I am 28 weeks now and due on September 24th. I am having another wonderful pregnancy. I continue to jog and exercise without any complications. The heat here does get to me, so I try to ride my bike in the evening, and workout indoors. I hope all of you are having a great summer, and are welcome to visit beautiful Mississippi anytime!
The Kruse Family