Friday, August 26, 2011

Better Than a Movie...

Our neighbors across the street have demolished their house and are building a new one. This can all be seen from Carter's bedroom window. He LOVES it. And is obsessed with it.

He tries to "talk" about it constantly. We know this because he says his version of "truck" and then moves his arm in a scooping motion down to the floor, scoops up some air and then raises it up. Just like the Track Hoe. (Yes, that is the real name of the Digger).

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

19 Month Old Carter

Dear Carter,

You are OFFICIALLY over a year-&-a-half! You are getting so big. Everyday I just stare at you can't believe how much you are growing, changing, and how amazing you are to me. I love you more than words will ever be able to say. I have read that when you become a mom, your heart is no longer in you, but is carried around by your baby. I have to say, that is the truth. You are my heart.

You are a fun-loving, easygoing, caring little boy. You like little thrills, like climbing the highest slide at the playground, playing hide and seek, peek a boo, and Daddy chasing you around the house sends you into loud excited screams!

You are talking, but in your own language. We understand you!! For instance, when you say:

  • "Car" we know it means Carter or Car. You always point to yourself, if you mean Carter!
  • You use the phrase Thank you appropriately, without us prompting you! (This may be my favorite!) But is comes out as "Ga ga."
  • "Knee" is how you say more!
  • "Lala" is your water! But you also know that rain is water!!
You love Jesus. Or what you know of Him! We've been singing about Jesus since you were just a tiny thing. Lots of times, it was for my sanity because we'd been up together for hours each night. You LOVE to say prayers to Jesus. It goes like this: you fold your hands, say "gaga Jeez" which means Thank you Jesus. Sometimes you make us pray several times during dinner or randomly during the day. (Wow, just typing that made me realize how God is using you, now.)

You also know that Jesus gives us rain.
So you say "Lala (and point)."
I say, "that is right, that is the rain. Rain is water."
You say,"Gaga Jeez" (Thank you Jesus).
It melts my heart.

Another phrase you use appropriately, that cracks me up is "Yesssssss!" We started doing this for you as you played basketball. Every time you'd make it we'd cheer real loud. But it began turning into hours of cheering real loud. (You are pretty good!!! AND Love basketball!!) So we added "Yessssssss!" into the rotation. But now, you say it for your self and pump your arm along with it, just like us. You even do it for other things you are excited about. Like yesterday when I pulled into the playground, you yelled "Yessssssss!" And often at the playground, when you are watching a friend play, you chant "Yesssssss!" for them when they do something great, like make it down the slide!

Carter-Bear, you LOVE to play! None of our stuff from China has arrived yet. So we don't have many toys here in Calgary, just yet. We have been busy, out and about, every day since we've been here. In that time, you went from not liking the feeling grass, gravel, wood shavings, etc. to laying and rolling around in it, without a care in the world! Anything but concrete gave you shivers and you'd stand so still. I worried a bit. But you were just fine! It was all new to you about 6 weeks ago!! You try EVERYTHING on the playground and keep Mama busy!! I love to watch you play and explore. You have wonderful coordination!

Lately, you have been getting pretty quick! You have been working on running! It's still a bit of a really fast walk, with your arms pumping furiously, but you are getting faster!! Another physical skill is jumping. Oh buddy. You try so hard. You WANT to jump so bad. You practice and practice everyday. For some reason, you have found a really thick book on Shanghai and use it as your jumping-board. You stand on that book and we count. Then, you use everything you've got to give your body an upward motion. We've yet to get both feet off the ground at the same time. (There may have been once.) But you are working so hard, I know you will get it soon. Keep it up, buddy!!!

You are interested in lots of things at the moment. Trucks of any kind, tractors or construction equipment, airplanes, trains, busses, the Garbage Man is amazing to you...we can/have to watch him for about 10 minutes as he comes down the street. You love animals and are really into anything to do with them! Playgrounds, of course, you spot every single one from your car seat. You LOVE other children and are attracted to them. You will find a group of friends at the playground and jump right in to play! You also love to watch older children and learn from what they are doing. You also love to read! I love this too! You have so many books memorized. I know this because you are ready for a little something on every page, maybe you know a special animal is coming, or a certain noise that you can make, or you even stand up to act something out if you can't use your words to tell me what you mean!

Eating has changed dramatically over the past 2 months that we've left China. You must have been in a strange phase at the end of our time there. But now, you are eating tons at every meal.

Breakfast: Usually, eggs, cheese, fruit milk OR pancakes or French toast, fruit, yogurt, milk
Lunch: Usually, pb on toast, fruit, cheese maybe a veggie or meat left over from dinner.
Dinner: Whatever meat we are eating and whatever veggie we are eating. Milk too!

You sometimes still need to nurse, maybe about once ever 48 hours. But you are a baby and are growing healthily!! I think you are slowly, trying to stop. But we aren't in a rush!

You are (currently) a fabulous sleeper! I say currently, because, every mommy knows, babies live in phases. However, you are done teething, so we SHOULD be okay for a while!!! You take one 2-3 hour nap every day and sleep about 13 hours at night, 7:30-8:30. Thank the lord! Because, while you've been a good sleeper for a while, you were still waking up about once a night for a looooong time. But you were very easy to go back down.

You enjoy being a helper around the house. You like to help with the laundry, unloading the dishwasher and you even like to help with the cooking. You even helped make salad the other day by putting all of the chopped veggies in the bowl! I saw you steal a carrot, but I didn't say anything! ;)

Carter, I feel so blessed to be your mommy. You are the sunshine in your Daddy's and my life! We think about you constantly and you always bring a smile to our faces.

As I'm finishing up this letter to you, I can hear you waking up (8:38 am, Tuesday, August 16) and you are saying "no, no, no" to something. Uh oh!!! I better go grab you and smooch your face!!!

Mommy and Daddy love you so much. So much, that just saying "we love you" seems to small. Thank you for being our son! You have made our world a better place!!!

Mommy (and Daddy)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Photo Update

I've just learned how to get lots of photos off my phone at one time!! So here is a little photo update....

Helping with the laundry!

Playing in the backyard!

Hanging out with the goats at Butterfield Acres!

One actually bit his finger. He relives this moment daily and randomly by biting his own finger and then saying "no no." Because that is what he told that goat.

The sand pit.

And the Butterfield Acres dirt pile!! Every boys dream!

Okay, this place is just cool. It is a coffee shop and kiddie play place. Great for those weather days where you can't go outside!

See you order from the other side of the door, where it looks like a cute coffee shop. Then they buzz you through to the play ground and serve you your coffee through the window. See, moms chat, kiddies play.

It's hard to take a picture without looking like a creeper. But it really is a good business idea!!

Finally, more splash park fun!!

See Carter in his polo? See me to the left? You can kind of see the baby bump ~15 weeks.

Last but not least!!! All wet!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

We Love this Place

I have to say...we are loving it here in Canada!!

This place is awesome!!!

The city is pretty small for US standards and way tiny compared to China cities!! But we are living in an awesome neighborhood right outside of downtown. Most will say we live in downtown but this is not city life, like we are used to. Ha ha. A house, yard, parks etc...not so much like the sky rises we've been in for the past few years.

This is a very outdoorsy place. Everyone is out riding bikes, jogging and carrying yoga mats at all times. Hence the reason we had to buy a chariot to attach to our bikes. Peer pressure. And they have an amazing trail system that goes all over the city.

Also, Calgary is full of green and blue! I feel like the cities I'm used to are covered in concrete and billboards. Not so much here. It is pretty hilly and as you drive up and down all you see is green grass, the river through the city and blue skies! It is beautiful.

Off in the distance you can see the mountains that are covered in snow!

This weekend, while on a long bike ride along the river, we watched as TONS of people floated along! (Like Texas, right!)

Finally, there is so much to do here! Maybe it is the freedom of getting to drive myself again or being able to read every sign, map and google search I can. But even though my list of friends is slim to none so far, Carter and I are keeping busy. And for me that is sanity.

Today I went to a Stroller Strength class! Loved it!! And even met a girl who went to A&M, and graduated the same year as I did! Small world!!

Any way, if anyone has ever wanted to visit, come on!! We'd love to have you!!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

So Much to Blog About..

That I don't even want to! Anyone else do that!? Lazy, I know. So let me get started...

Baby News:

If you saw on Facebook, yes, we are pregnant!

Honestly, I'm just now getting excited about this.

The first time around, you are just excited. Second time around, you know what is coming and it's scary to think you will have to do it again...with a toddler. Logistically, it still freaks me out.

Also, I have a strange blood type. O-. It's the universal donor! So you know who to come to, if you need any!! :) BUT mixed with a + blood type, like John's A+, can be tricky. While I can offer my blood to anyone, I can't accept anything but O-. My body will fight it off. The same can happen if your newly created and growing baby has + blood type. My body can fight it off. Horrible, right? Horrible to know, my own body would do that. Carter is O+!! He did just fine!! But we have miscarried in the past.

I know the risk is still there, but keeping it a secret and pretending like I'm not pregnant, doesn't help our chances any more. But that is how I cope with the first trimester. I just try not to think about it, to keep my thoughts from getting too carried away. So, second trimester is here and I'm asking everyone to join us in praying for this baby.

Carter News:

He's working on 19 months! I can't believe it! He is so good, fun and funny, that I can't get enough of him!

I love seeing what he knows. He understands so much!

Some of my favorite words of his are:

Lala: water, banana, lights and cousin Ella.
Gaga: Thank you
Jeez: Jesus, cheese
Jooz: juice, shoes
Goose: Lucy
Aff: off

He's got soo many animal sounds, it blows me away!

Recently, he has been pretending...

One example of this game is "going night night." If you ever see him leaning his head over to his shoulder and he is super still, eyes still open and very excited smile, this is it. You have to say "Oh, Carter must be night night." The he pops his head up and yells "Ahhh!" And you act super surprised. Ha ha.

The other example is, I've seen him dragging his green beans on his knee going "sssssss." After a bit, I figured it out and asked him if that was a snake. Confirmed.

Biggest news yet, though, he is finally weaning! I didn't think he would do it on his own. I wanted to nurse all the way through living in China. Then I needed to wait until we were settled into our new place. So, when we first arrived, he nursed like an infant. Big changes were going on in his life, so I'm glad I was there for the little man. Well, I'm leaving it up to him and in the past 60 hours he's nursed twice. Crazy!

If you ever have any questions about breastfeeding, feel free to ask! I had no idea what I was getting myself into when we started but I'm so happy to have made it this long! I'll keep you posted on how the weaning process goes. There isn't much information out there about letting your child lead the way. So I'll make sure to keep track!