Saturday 31 January 2009

Delightful boy

It's been amazing, this whole motherhood thing, watching my baby boy grow from a scrunched up newborn to a rambunctious toddler. Every day now brings something new - a new skill, a new word, a new way to make us laugh, a new challenge to tackle, a new joy to discover.

His favourite family activity right now? Hiding under the blankets - all of us, at the same time. I can't think of anything that makes him happier than having all three of us giggling away with a blanket over our heads. Our own private family fort.

His favourite words remain "fall" and "crash" - he is a boy, through and through. A delightful, squealing, rough-and-tumble boy. Having grown up with four younger sisters, I have to say, I love having a boy.

(And wow, would I ever love having a girl too.)

Likewise, his favourite toys are still cars. His Oma made him a wonderful quilted car mat for Christmas, which he has been loving.

He's starting to count along with us now. He's been "counting" things for a while (pointing while we count), but now he's starting to say the words too. I've been asking him to say his name lately, which sometimes results in a whispered "Ja!" but always results in a fit of giggles. Apparently, it is very funny to ask him to say his name. Who knew?

Pretty much, I just love this little guy.

It's heeeeere!

My very first post partum period - only 21 months (and nine days...but who's counting?) after my son was born!

Which means we are now *officially* trying to conceive, after several months of "unofficially" trying/hoping. Time to stock up on pregnancy tests!! Oh, I hope it happens quickly.

(Feel free to skip the following TMI: I was pleasantly surprised at how fine I felt when my period started! Pre-baby, I was horribly horribly sick every time my period arrived, to the point where I passed out a couple times. I dreaded it each and every month. This time around I had no warning whatsoever, other than being incredibly exhausted for a couple days beforehand. Oh, and you know what finally brought it back? I had just bought some nice new white underwear. Seriously, I thought that when I bought them - this will be the week my period returns, just because I'm wearing nice new white underwear. You know, Murphy's Law and all. Anyway. TMI over.)

Even though our children will now be further apart age-wise than I had hoped they would be, I do still fully believe it was worth it to continue to nurse my toddler. It was disappointing that my body was so sensitive to that, but worth it nonetheless. Even just two weeks ago, when he was so very sick that all he did was lie on my knee and cry, he wouldn't eat or drink anything but at least he still nursed (like a freakin' newborn!). He recovered quickly, though it took him a few days to get back to his old good-natured and silly self, but the fact that he would still nurse took away so much worry that we would have had otherwise.

And then, kind boy that he is, he shared that illness with his father and I, so we both have colds and my husband feels like he's getting the flu as well. It just has not been a healthy few weeks for us! I don't know what's going on. We very rarely get sick, but lately it's just been one thing after another. I won't even tell you how many boxes of Kleenex we've gone through in the past two weeks.

I really need to get on top of this whole blogging thing again. I'm getting further and further stuck in the rut of ahh, I have so much to write about, I don't know where to I just won't write at all! Maybe I'll do another NaBloPoMo again soon...or maybe I'll wait until tax season is over.

Anyway, I'm now having several plush animals stuffed onto my knee by a very amused toddler, so I'll admit defeat and end this entry. Have a lovely weekend!

Sunday 18 January 2009

Songs for Saplings

One of the boy's Christmas gifts from us this year was the CD Songs for Saplings. The CD contains Scripture set to song for each letter of the alphabet, plus a few extras at the end for various holidays and such. The songs are written and sung by Dana Dirksen, who began setting Scripture to music in order to help her own children memorize verses.

This CD is wonderful. I had looked for a CD of Scripture set to music a few months ago, bought one from a local Christian bookstore, listened to it once - and haven't picked it up again. It was awful. The music was bad, the Scripture references weren't included in the songs, and I just couldn't bring myself to listen to it again. This seems to be the trend in Christian material - the quality doesn't matter, just make something about God and you're set!

Songs for Saplings, on the other hand, actually is good. Jacob loves the CD and asks for it to be turned on several times a day - and if I'm going to have to listen to something that often (and have it stuck in my head even when it's not playing), it better not sound like some sort of horrible 80's rap that just happens to include the word "Jesus" and "Bible" in there a few times. This is definitely not that. The songs are cute, the music is great - and as an added bonus, I'm finally memorizing Scripture, something I've never been very good at.

This is an excellent tool for teaching young children biblical truths. I highly recommend it. The CDs are on sale right now, so it's as good a time as any to pick one up - or two or three, as they would make excellent baby shower gifts. (Just a note for those who live in Canada, you have to order through their international page.) They also have three "Questions with Answers" CDs, which I haven't ordered yet but likely will at some point. The series is aimed at children beginning at three years old and includes various questions and their answers in song format (you can listen to samples on their website). But for those with babies or toddlers, I can't recommend Songs for Saplings enough!

Saturday 17 January 2009

More illness

This has not been a healthy past few weeks for us! My poor boy is snuggled up on my lap, blessedly sleeping - something he didn't do much of at all last night.

It seemed like he was just getting a bit of a cold (cough, runny nose), but now he's got a fever, vomiting, lots of crying when he's awake and sleeping in between - and his diapers! I'll spare you the details. He's pretty much down for the count right now and hasn't wanted to leave my arms since early last night.

Ah well. It's as good a day as any to slow down, relax, and snuggle my poor sick baby until he feels better again.

In the meantime, your prayers would be much appreciated. And if you could add one in there for my husband, he has a job interview on Monday. After six and a half months of being unemployed, this is welcome news indeed.

Tuesday 13 January 2009

And a (very belated) Happy New Year!

Ah, home.

My bed. My pillow. My son's bed and pillow. My food. My drinks. My oven. My books. My computer.

Ah, my computer.

The little guy seemed to feel the same way. As soon as we got back home, he walked around collecting all his toys and stuffed animals and blankets and sat down in his chair covered in them. It was so funny to see from a boy who doesn't usually seem particularly attached to any toys!

Things are finally starting to settle back down into a nice routine after our three week vacation. We arrived back home last Thursday at 2:00 in the morning, thanks to some flight delays (making it a 15 hour trip from the time we left my in-laws to the time we walked in our door). The little guy did amazingly well for a 20 month old confined to a carseat or lap most of the day. I wouldn't describe it as "fun" by any means, but it was about as well, if not better, than could be expected.

The holidays were definitely fun, though. We spent a week and a half with my parents in Manitoba followed by a week and a half with my in-laws in British Columbia.

Fun, yes, but also very sickly.

My husband Isaac had a cold for the first couple days.

Then my youngest sister got the flu, which she promptly passed on to my second youngest sister.

My son Jacob got it next, resulting in a Christmas Eve spent alternating between sleeping and throwing up all over his dad. (I admit it, I wasn't complaining when, after spending an hour napping on me, Jacob woke up, squirmed a couple times, asked for his dad and promptly threw up all over him.)

On Christmas morning, my sister-in-law's cat had to be put down.

My grandpa died a couple days after Christmas, the same day my grandma left our house to head back home to him. She says it's a guilt she'll have to learn to live with for the rest of her life (my grandpa was in a nursing home - my grandma has taken care of him every day for years, and finally she takes a trip away and he dies before she gets back - which is not her fault at all but no one has yet been able to convince her of that).

The day we left Manitoba to head to BC, I got my husband's cold, which ended up being the worst cold I have ever had. The plane ride was miserable thanks to my clogged ears, which didn't unclog until the next day, and I spent the next few days blowing my nose every five minutes.

After I got my husband's cold, I got my son's flu and spent the day throwing up.

Then my sister-in-law got the flu.

Then my other sister-in-law got the flu.

Then my mother-in-law got the flu.

Then - surprise! - my father-in-law got the flu.

My sister-in-law also got the cold I brought with me, spending a few days attached to the Kleenex box herself.

And just to end the trip off with one more thing, Jacob hurt his ankle and spent the next two days limping around. (He actually thought this was hilarious though - even immediately after it happened, he tried to walk, fell, laughed, tried to walk, fell, laughed, tried to walk, fell...and then cried. And then it got funny again later when it didn't hurt so bad - especially when he tried to run and ended up with this funny limping run that usually resulted in more falling.)

Oh, and Isaac also gave his cold to his aunt as well, who we stayed with overnight on the way to and from Manitoba.

I think that about covers our sickly holidays. It was crazy, day after day of someone being sick (or worse) - but it did force us to spend a lot of time lazing around the house instead of doing all of the activies we had planned to do. Which was nice, I think. And despite all of the illness, I'd still definitely say that our holidays were fun.

The two visits were so different. There was my family, which this year included my parents, my grandma, and my four younger sisters (7, 10, 12 and 23). Jacob got a bus that (very loudly) sings The Wheels on the Bus, a truck that (very loudly) makes various truck sounds, and many other things. Jacob attached himself to my youngest sister (who is only 7 years old), following her around everywhere. My poor sisters are jealous of both my son and my husband, as they both take some of my attention away from them, but I did try to spend as much time focusing on them as I could. It's hard to live so far away from them when they're so young.

Then there was my husband's family, which included his parents and two younger sisters (19 and 23). Jacob got a lovely handmade quilt/activity mat, some wooden toys, and many other things. Jacob was fascinated by my youngest SIL's bedroom, which was unfortunate because he wasn't actually allowed to go in there - so every once in a while he'd run off in that direction giggling madly because maybe this would be the time he could get in there unnoticed! He really needs to work on the quiet aspect of sneaking away to get into trouble, silly child. He mastered the stairs while at their house (we don't have stairs in our home so he hasn't had much practice), rolled his first bowling ball, learned how to peal an orange, and - his father's proudest moment so far - began to recognize and say "hockey". He's a true Canadian now!

Now we're back home, disappointed anew that we live so far away from both families. I do hope that will change someday - but for now, we all live where we live and will make the best of it, visiting whenever we can.

I hope the holidays were good for you all, and I wish you all the best in this new year.