Day 117- Happy Birthday Stacy!

So... there is no way I can compete with Stephanie's blog post wishing Stacy a happy birthday, but here's my attempt...

HAPPY 20th BIRTHDAY, STACY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love you so much and I'm so proud of you! I can't wait to live closer! Hope you had a fabulous birthday!


Day 111- Moving

Short post:
We have been packing like crazy because everything was passed on our inspection and we resolved all issues with our buyer. Guess when we close... on Tuesday, yes, the 26th. Guess when we have to evacuate the premises... by Thursday, yes, the 28th (of April) So, we're moving up to Platteville to stay with Al's parents for a month until we move to KC. Things are a little crazy around here.

If you think of it, pray...
- that we will be able to move everything up smoothly
- that Caleb (and Nigel) will do okay with the transition to a new, temporary home
- that I will get a good job in KC (I have an interview next weekend)
- that we will find good, safe, quiet housing in KC
- that we will stay close to God during all the transitions and depend on him alone
- that Al would have courage and peace in starting school again
- that I would be able to let go and trust God's plan for our lives and his presence each day


Day 106- International Travel with a Baby 101

First of all... if you every wonder how I know what day of the year it is... just click here.

Baby Travel 101...
1. It is NOT crazy to travel overseas with a baby. If you decide to do so, you must face many faces, odd looks, comments about how "you are braver than I would ever be," etc. My first piece of advice (from my extensive experience of 1 trip) is that you cannot let other people's fears intimidate you. My favorite comment back: Lots of babies live in Italy everyday. I'm sure Caleb will be fine.
2. Although it is NOT crazy to travel with a baby, it would be crazy to travel without quite a bit of planning. Our trip was a bit last minute (only about 2.5 months to plan), but we (especially I) spent lots of time reading travel books, on internet threads/sites dedicated to traveling with a baby. Depending on where you go, the travel needs could be different (whether you need to bring diapers, food, formula, stroller, car seat, trip insurance, etc)
3. Baby needs a passport (even to Mexico). DON'T forget this. If your child doesn't have one yet, it could limit spontaneity in travel.
4. Air travel is the most intimidating part, in my opinion.
a. We were incredibly blessed to have an empty seat next to us on both international flights without having to pay. If you can afford it, I would recommend paying for a seat for baby. However, if you can't (like us) just gear up to tough it out for 8-9 hours. Caleb was an angel, but even if your child isn't... anyone can bear anything for 8-9 hours (including you, your neighbors, and the flight attendants). And of course, if your baby has trouble clearing his/her ears, nurse him/her during take-off and landing.
b. I forgot, but I was going to bring earplugs to pass out as a silly/serious gift to those sitting around us. One thing I learned is that the white noise from a plane is pretty loud. Even though Caleb did fuss a bit on each flight, the people around us did not hear him at all.
c. Travel before baby can crawl if you can. I've heard it gets way harder once kids know what they are missing. Although, all international flights have cartoons and movies that kids can watch.
d. We weren't sure how much stuff you could check at the gate when we were flying. We just took a stroller, but we saw people with travel systems (car seat/stroller combos) and even separate car seats and strollers. I think airlines are pretty lax when it comes to checking things at the gate (especially if you have a cuddly or crying baby in your arms).
e. If you don't pay for a ticket for baby, you still have to pay for your baby to ride on an international flight. The cost is generally 10% of the adult ticket + taxes and allows the baby to have a checked bag.
5. Don't plan the same type of vacation you took before baby came along. We limited the number of things we did and places we went in order to make the trip easier on Caleb. We stayed in apartments (which we found on airbnb.com and tripadvisor.com). Apartments were nice because we had more space, our own living space so Caleb could sleep better, and honestly they were similar in price to hotel rooms.
6. Limit the amount of stuff you take. Because we knew we would be able to wash clothes in our apartments, we limited our clothing greatly. We also bought diapers in country and limited toys. Caleb was more entertained by a water bottle than his electronic book anyway.
7. Consider your baby's temperament in planning your trip. Caleb is super easy-going, so we knew he would be able to go with the flow as we travelled around. If your baby has a really hard time with change, maybe your international travel should be to an all-inclusive resort somewhere or you should stay in one city the entire time. Rather than regretting what you can't do, enjoy the things you can do with the new bundle of love in your life.


6 months old!

Caleb is now officially 6 months old!

(as of March 26th)

turning 6 months old in the airport Full body shot :)

Dear little Caleb,

Can I just say that I love you so much! You are a delight in my life! You now weight 17.5 pounds and are 28 inches long. You are in the 90th percentile for height and the 50th for weight. I think you may end up being a bit tall (if your genetics have anything to do with it, you will). You have been learning and changing a lot over the past month. Last month you really started rolling and sitting well, saying consonants, splashing the bathtub, and improving your ability to eat solids! You love oatmeal, bananas, sweet potato, carrots, and other fruits. The only thing you haven't really liked yet are peas and green beans (although you tolerated them mixed with rice). You LOVE clapping, especially patti-cake. You can also stay on your hands and knees for a few seconds at a time. You even traveled to another country! May I just say that you received the "best baby ever" award from every stewardess. You barely made a sound on any of the 4 flights. The most noise you made was squealing with delight on one of the trips. You've still had some trouble sleeping through the night, which makes mom a little tired, but we decided we would work on that after being back from Italy. I'm starting to realize the "weight" of being your mom. I want to protect you and do everything I can to give you the best opportunities in life. I love you and can't believe that I've only had 6 months with you. You are growing up so fast. In ways I'm so excited for each new phase, but I know I'll miss being the one that brings you comfort and snuggling with you as you fall asleep at night.



Day 103- Lame, I know...

I've been wanting to post for a while and have been super busy. Anything else seems like too much mental work, so.... I stole this from a friend's blog. In the next few days there should be some more substantial blogs about Caleb turning 6 months, our trip to Italy, selling our house, moving, etc...
A. Age: 27
B. Bed size: King
C. Chore you hate: Folding the laundry
D. Dogs: Nigel- a "chesadoodle"
E. Essential start to your day: laying in bed for several hours before having to get up :)... well, in reality I just need a hot shower
F. Favorite color: Green
G. Gold or silver: Silver
H. Height: 5’7
I. Instruments you play: Flute, but haven't REALLY played it in about 9 years, also a smattering of guitar
J. Job Title: Pediatric Physical Therapist
K. Kids: Caleb, 6 months old and the cutest, sweetest child to ever exist
L. Live: Denver (Aurora), soon to be Kansas City (Overland Park)
M. Mom’s name: Jane
N. Nicknames: Suse, Suzie Boozie (by my parents)
O. Overnight hospital stays: When I was 2 for dehydration and in September 2010 after having Caleb
P. Pet peeve: People talking about others behind their back
Q. Quote from a movie: The only one I can think of right now: "Now stop that, I mean it! Anybody want a peanut?"
R. Right or left handed: Right
S. Siblings: Stacy, Stephanie, Charlie, Matt, Jamie
T. Time you wake up: depends on when the little guy wakes up... anywhere from 6:00 to 7:30 (on my days off)
U. Underwear: yes
V. Vegetables you dislike: pickles (I'm not sure if this counts)
W. What makes you run late: Everything... I'm always running late somehow
X. X-Rays you’ve had: Of my teeth... to replace my 2 congenitally missing teeth
Y. Yummy food you make: "pink" chicken chili, curry
Z. Zoo animal: Giraffes and monkeys

PS- Happy Birthday Nicole!


Day 95- A glimpse of Italy

Here's a few pics from our trip. I'll post more about the trip and traveling with a baby later.

The Colosseum

The Vatican Museum Via Del Amore' at Cinque Terre
The Tower of Pisa