Christmas part 2

On Christmas Eve we headed up to Matt’s parents’ house. We had a lovely time. We went to mass on Christmas Eve. Christmas Day was packed. We got up and opened some gifts, had a big lunch with Matt’s entire immediate family, took a little nap and then headed to Matt’s aunt’s house for the extended family get together. For those who don’t know, Matt’s mother is the oldest of 16 kids, so that gathering is always big and fun!

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Christmas part 1

Since we travel for Christmas and don’t want to have to haul too many gifts with us, we have decided to give Greta (and Bubba Mae and any future children) their main gifts before we leave. These are the gifts from us. This year we made Greta a dress up box. I took a cardboard box and covered it with cute fabric. We gathered stuff from friends and family as well as my dance costumes and a few yard sale finds. Greta loves it! She loves hats and shoes and such, so we figured she would enjoy it. Her favorite thing so far is the tap shoes. She wears them around all the day long. They are a little big and hurt her foot a little, but she insists on wearing them. Here are some pictures of her opening her box!

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snowed in

Yesterday we had our first big snowstorm of the season. While we weren’t technically snowed in, we opted not to try and go anywhere. We estimate we got at least a foot of snow. Greta had two little adventures in the snow. She wouldn’t really move around but didn’t seem to want to come in, so I guess she liked it!

Greta got a little sled ride from one of our neighbors. They pulled in her in the sled back to our door. I don’t have any pictures of that because it was still snowing quite hard and so I put the camera back in the house so it didn’t get all wet! We have most of the appropriate winter clothing, but are lacking waterproof mittens for Greta, so she sported some of mine. I went to the Target the other day and the only thing small they had was thin little gloves.

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Matt is getting ready to go dig a car out so we can head to church. Our roads have been plowed and so we will venture out. I’m sure this later mass will be much more crowded than the earlier masses, so hopefully we will get a seat!

18 months

A few weeks ago Greta turned 18 months old. We were busy in the midst of moving, so I didn’t get a chance to write anything up. I was also terrible about taking notes. So we shall see what I can come up with.

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Greta continues to learn new words all the time. I don’t really write them all down or count them, but at her doctor’s visit this month we estimated she uses about 20 words regularly, which is pretty average. Greta uses some sign language that we taught her as well, which definitely helps her to communicate what she wants. She also made up some signs for things we didn’t teach her, mainly egg and yogurt.

At the doctor’s visit, which actually took place mid-month rather than at the end of the month, Greta weighed 24 lbs, 4 oz, which means she lost another 4 oz in the past three months. She is now in the 50th percentile for weight, down from the >95th percentile at 12 months. All that walking and running sure burns calories. Greta has a pretty hardy appetite, so we aren’t worried. Greta is in the 88th percentile for height (I think she is 33 inches) and her head remains large at the 92nd percentile.

Since Matt had off most of this month of Greta’s life we spent lots of time together as a family. We did some exploring around San Antonio.

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We went to the botanical gardens to take pictures for our Christmas cards. Here are some outtakes that aren’t on the actual card. There were way too many cute ones to chose from.

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We also went to Houston to visit my family one last time before we left Texas. Greta got to go to her first high school football game and enjoyed it very much. We also visited Austin to do some exploring. We tried to spend lots of time outside since we knew we were headed to winter in the north very soon. We also went to Tallahassee for Thanksgiving and Greta ate her first Thanksgiving meal (last year she was almost 6 months old, but didn’t eat anything yet.)

The big thing that Greta learned this month was how to put her shoes on! She is very proud of this and now refuses to take her shoes off. The first time she did it she just walked around the corner beaming at me. It was adorable.

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This was our last month with our garden and Greta continued to enjoy harvesting. We got tons of eggplants and a few tomatoes and peppers.

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Greta is so full of joy! She loves running around and exploring everywhere.

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Greta continues to love to talk on the phone. She will talk as long as there is not a real person on the other line. Only occasionally will she actually talk to a real person. We have given her several of our old cell phones that are hanging around the house. We have to be careful about giving her our phone after she somehow racked up $8 worth of downloading charges this month. She apparently called our landlord without us knowing. He told us about it when we arrived and met him. Oops.

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Greta and Albert really get along very well. Greta LOVES Albert. She gives him kisses and hugs before bed and usually wakes up asking for Albert. He is very gentle with her and usually just runs away if he has had enough, but most of the time he just sits there and enjoys the attention.

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Greta loves to help in the kitchen (well she loves helping with most anything). I started letting her sit on the counter and help me cook or bake. Here we are peeling tomatillos to make salsa verde and helping make eggplant parmesan.

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Greta likes to pick out her clothes, we just have to make sure she grabs something weather appropriate. She also thinks it is fun to wear my clothes or shoes.

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Reading continues to be a favorite activity.

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Greta’s last two molars came in this month sometime, so now all four are there. We are still waiting on the canines to completely come in. They have all broken the gums, but then seemed to stop, so I’m sure they will be in eventually, but for now there are just little white points there.

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Austin

One day before we left Texas we drove up to Austin for the day. We hadn’t been up since we moved to Texas and thought we should check it out before heading out. We spent most of the day at Zilker Park. There was a big playground, a train, and much more. We attempted the playground, but several school groups were there and the kids were big and running around, so we didn’t actually get that much playing in. We also went on the little train ride around the park.

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After that we headed over to the botanical gardens. I highly recommend you check them out if you are ever in Austin. They are quite lovely and free! Definitely much better than the very expensive botanical gardens in San Antonio.

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moving week

Two weeks ago was moving week and boy was it full. Monday was pretty low key. We mostly hung around the house and did last minute things, packed up our airplane stuff and went to dinner with some of Matt’s former colleagues. Tuesday the packers came and did all the packing of the house. While it was nice to have someone doing all the work, there wasn’t that much for us to do but sit around and be bored. It pretty much took the entire day for them to pack, I think they left around 4:30 pm after having arrived around 8 am. The packers and movers were the same guys and they came from PA down to pack and move us. They delivered some stuff to San Antonio and then packed our stuff.

Tuesday evening we went to pick up our rental car since we would lose our cars the next day and needed something to get around town for the rest of the week. On the way home from the car rental place Greta threw up all over herself and carseat. This was her first solid food throw up, so it wasn’t pleasant. We made it home and gave her a bath and got her to bed. She seemed totally fine the next day so we weren’t really sure what the problem was. I thought maybe she choked a little one some crackers she was eating in the car. I went to bed hoping and praying that it was a one time occurrence since we had no extra sheets or towels or really anything since everything was packed up. Oh and the washer was disconnected.

Wednesday was another semi boring day. The movers were busy all day loading the truck. Since the weather was cool the house definitely cooled down quite a bit. Greta wouldn’t nap in an empty room on the floor so eventually we headed over to our hotel to check in and get her to nap for a bit. Matt stayed with the movers and mostly sat around looking helpless. After nap we went and picked Albert up from the vet and headed over to the house to get Dada. All week Greta had very little appetite, which I’m still not sure if that was from the stress of moving or if she had some little stomach bug.

Thursday morning we ate breakfast at the hotel and then went back to the room, Greta threw up a little bit. She definitely didn’t throw up her entire meal, so we weren’t sure if it was something she ate, stress or a stomach bug. I’m thinking it was the hard boiled egg that she ate. She was the only one who had one and the only one who got sick. After that she seemed totally fine, running around like a crazy woman. We explored the hotel and then headed out to do some errands and check on Albert. We stopped by the house (to check on Albert) and Greta screamed at the thought of getting out of the car. She was holding her carseat straps on tight so we couldn’t get her out. She and I stayed in the car while Matt went in to get a few things. We went and met some friends at the bookstore for one last goodbye. Then we met up with some of Matt’s former co-workers for lunch. Greta and I dropped Matt off at the house to wait for the cleaning service and then headed to the hotel for naps. After a late nap and late cleaners we finally got everything done at the house. We grabbed some dinner and then headed back to the hotel to sleep.

Thursday night Greta woke up in the middle of the night burning up. I didn’t actually take her temperature, but gave her some tylenol and got her back to sleep. It took nearly 3 hours for her to feel cool to the touch again. Poor baby. She slept very restlessly all night long, which meant I didn’t sleep much at all.

We got up bright and early Friday morning, loaded the car, and headed over to the house to pickup Albert. Then we headed to the airport to return the car and get checked in and such. Check in was easy-peasy and we made it through security with no problems. Our first flight was just to Houston and we had no trouble at all. We got to Houston and it was snowing like crazy. All week we had seen that the forecast was calling for snow in both San Antonio and Houston, so we were hoping to get out before the snow arrived, but alas we did not. We boarded our plane and everything seemed fine. We were still on time and then came the delays. Every 30-60 minutes the pilot would come on the speaker and say we should be off the ground in about 30 minutes. All told we somehow ended up departing about 3.5 hours after our scheduled departure time. Thankfully Greta was still feeling quite sick so she just sat in my lap the whole time, drifting in and out of sleep and nursing the whole time. Only problem was that it was hot, hot, hot on the plane and holding a feverish baby didn’t cool me off at all. Also, anytime I moved an inch, which is bound to happen when sitting on an airplane and being pregnant, Greta woke up. Alas we made it safely to the Philadelphia airport without too much crying. Albert did ok on the flight. He would have been fine if we had been on time, but by the time we were able to get settled and let him out of the carrier he had been trapped for over 12 hours. We got our luggage and rental car and headed out. We headed to our new condo to meet our landlord so we could leave Albert there for the weekend. Our landlord is super nice and accommodating and didn’t mind waiting for us to arrive, even though we were much later than originally planned. After getting Albert settled in for a little while we headed about an hour and 15 minutes west to Matt’s parents’ house.

The weekend there was nice and relaxing. I was pretty stressed during the week of the move because I couldn’t do much and could only sit and think about all the stuff that needed to get done. Now that we were here and helpless there wasn’t much to worry about. Greta got to see her first snowfall (pics and videos on flickr, and coming here later) and got to spend some fun times with the family.

Monday morning we left Matt’s parents’ house early, about 6 am to head back to the condo to meet the movers. All day they moved stuff in. I tried to keep Greta out of the way, while Matt checked off the boxes. It was quite cold that day and since the door was open all day long, Greta and I mostly hid out in the back bedroom to keep warm. I woke up feeling yucky on Monday morning, sore throat, feverish, and generally achy. I think I had what Greta had last Friday. Greta did not have a very day on Monday. She was throwing tantrum after tantrum and well dealing with those while feeling sick isn’t the most fun. We all survived the day though and slept well Monday night. Once the movers were gone Greta calmed down quite a bit and each day things got easier, but she is definitely still adjusting.

The week the movers were packing us up, Greta was definitely upset and not quite happy and responded by throwing many more tantrums than normal. Now that we have just about everything important unpacked, Greta is settling in much better. She still isn’t quite sure about this whole thing, but I suspect things will continue to get better. Yesterday she only threw one real tantrum and that was because I made her come inside, and well that could have happened anywhere.

Matt started his new job yesterday and so far, so good. I went to my first appointment with the new midwives today and they seem nice. The office is in walking distance of our condo. Slowly, but surely we are getting settled in and finding our way around. I’ll write more about some of the good/bad things about living here.

hectic week

The next few weeks will continue to be slow on the updating around here. This week we have:
Today – Packers pack the house
Wednesday – Movers load everything into the truck, including two cars
Thursday – Cleaners clean the house top to bottom
Friday – Fly to PA, leave Albert at condo, go to Matt’s parents’ house

This weekend we will be spending with Matt’s parents and then Monday everything gets delivered. Cable gets turned on Monday, which means we should have internet and phone again!

Next week will be filled with getting settled in, getting our new driver’s licenses, car registrations, etc. We will be making one final trip to our beloved Costco. We are getting rid of of membership since the closest one will be about 20 miles from us, which is just to far for us to justify it.

I haven’t downloaded pictures in a long time, so when I do there will be lots of posts.

Hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving and is enjoying preparing for Christmas.