Four of the things I am most proud of in life are these: my faith; my choice of husband; birthing such a wonderful, beautiful child; and this:
After all the trouble I've been through in the last week, I feel like I birthed this thing too. So I guess it's official. I walked into the BMV yesterday and all 10-15 of the clerks started smiling. "It's Mary Katherine," they said. Then one added, "Paris-Kerrigan." The lady taking my picture had the nerve to say, "That's a long name," as I placed my signature on my license. I tried hard not to give her a dirty look. But she is right. It is a long name. I've decided to simply add an "M" to the signature I'm used to: "M. Kate P. Kerrigan." The full name is long enough that by the time I get to the end of Katherine, it starts to look like a long squiggly line. The perfectionist in me hates that. I want to clearly see each letter or I'm not satisfied.
Thanks for your support in the midst of my crusade.
On to Italy...Several of you have inquired about our trip. I'll tell you what I know. My brother-in-law, Randy, is currently in Prado, Italy (oops, PraTo) with the AIM program (Adventures in Missions). He completed a semester of classes in Texas related to missions and bible, and at the end of the "semester" he was sent with a team to Italy to, as far as I can understand, be an apprentice to a missionary there. He's been there since May.
Gilbert's mom, dad, and grandmother decided to plan a trip to visit, and his mom very graciously offered to purchase us tickets as well! We are very excited. We thought we might need to go seperately, as Gilbert's mom was planning to go during her spring break, but mine was not on the same week. However, when Gilbert accepted the job here, it freed up my schedule considerably. If I have the opportunity to interview for any jobs that will begin before then, I plan to be up-front about our trip and make sure that potential employers would be willing to give me this week off.
We were concerned about taking Cole. My way of looking at things has been this: this is a once in a lifetime trip for me, but hopefully not for him. On top of that, he won't appreciate it and traveling with a 19-month-old may be a little difficult, especially when the travel itself will take almost 24 hours and being there will mean a time change to adjust to (I don't know what the time change is, exactly, but I'm sure it's enough to shake up a baby's schedule). Because of all these concerns, and because my mom's spring break is the exact same week, my mom (and maybe Auntie Em) will come to Indiana and spend the week at our place with Cole.
As far as what we're doing while we're there, I'm not totally sure. I think Randy is planning some things for us to do. We are flying into Florence, and I'm pretty sure we'll do some sight-seeing in the bigger cities. I think my biggest interest is having the chance to see some of the country-side. That's all I know, for now. I can keep filling in more details as I learn them! Thanks for your interest!
(Am I driving you guys crazy with these novel-length posts? I'll try to work on this, but I told you, I can't give the simplified version of any story.)