Sunday, July 20, 2014

Life lately

July so far has been a busy, but fun month.

We had a quiet 4th of July - we were all feeling exhausted from our trip down south and decided to just lay low for the weekend. We did make it out of the house though for our local neighbourhood bike decorating & parade. It was really sweet!

We got Austin's USA passport back in the mail - for the second time, mind you. The first time they spelled his name wrong so we had to get it corrected. I had been umming and ahhing for ages on when to take my next trip to Australia (and introduce baby Austin to everyone), but after getting his passport back I finally made a decision: September. This September. On my own with a toddler & baby!!! Yes, call me crazy lady tackling those flights alone. It'll be worth it though, especially as Mitch will be overseas himself for work.

July is our month of Aussie visitors, and we kicked it off with the arrival of one of my oldest friends - we've been close since we were 15, meeting in the early weeks of Grade 11. She brought a lovely friend with her (also from the same small Qld town Mitch and I grew up in!), I was super excited to introduce them to our little chunky monkey.

Seeing as we couldn't all fit into our car, we caught the train into the city the weekend they were here. My fitbit calculated that we walked almost 15km all over San Francisco that day! Even with all the walking, we caught cable cars & street trolleys around the city - no easy feat with the huge Baby Jogger double stroller, but we did it. Ollie was in transportation heaven.

Of course, it wouldn't have been a visit with Meags without a spot of shopping... Amazingly, we managed to get in 5hrs at the mall with both boys in tow. There were no meltdowns. Truly, amazing. We definitely made the most of it and filled the car boot with goodies - yay for sales!

July has been a great month already, and with a Disney trip, more visitors & Lake Tahoe - there's only more fun ahead! Oh, how I love summer!

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Friday, July 18, 2014

San Diego, California

It's been a few weeks since our trip now, but beautiful San Diego still deserves its own post. We LOVED this area! When we moved to California, I had imagined clear blue skies, great weather & amazing beaches. The latter I've found a little disappointing in NorCal - yes, the beaches here are beautiful but they are FREEZING cold, even in summer.

For the second half of our summer road trip, we stayed in downtown San Diego, but spent a day exploring the beautiful coastal region of La Jolla. I could live here. Seriously. I finally found my perfect Californian beach - with a cute little cove, clear water, seals & snorkeling galore, it was stunning.

One of our key reasons for visiting San Diego was to take the boys to the world famous San Diego Zoo. The zoo was definitely impressive - it was by the far the largest and cleanest zoo I've ever been to, but I wasn't blown away. Still, it was fun spending some time walking around (up and down all the massive hills mind you) and checking out all the different animals, some of which I'd never seen before.

After splashing around in Palm Springs and a trip to Legoland, San Diego was the perfect ending to our first holiday as a family of four. I wonder where the next trip will take us.... I'm thinking east coast?!?!

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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Four months {Austin Mitchell}

Our little chunkster is FOUR months!

It turns out our home scales are wayyyy out. At his four month appointment, Austin weighed in at 16 lbs 4.5 oz and is 26 1/4 in long. He's still in size 2 nappies and 6 month clothing.

As of June 30th (3.5 months), we have a roller! Austin rolled back to front the day we got home from our holiday. Mitch and Ollie were out grabbing some groceries, I was in the kitchen and heard a lot of grunting & walked into the lounge room where Austin had rolled onto his tummy. He also rolled front to back a few days earlier in San Diego, but it was on a bed so I didn't count it as a true roll.

No teeth have popped through yet, but if he's like his big brother they won't be far off - and he's certainly been showing the same early signs this past week. He's been more fussy, drooling like nothing else and constantly chomping down on anything he can to get some relief. I *think* I can see the 2 points of a teeth under the gum, but it just hasn't broken through yet. His doctor took one look at him at his check up and was like yup, teething!

He's also become quite interested in toys. We had a Dutch friend come and visit briefly a couple of weeks ago and he brought gifts for the boys, Austin's being a little fabric book. He LOVES it - he holds it and crinkles the pages, looks at himself in the mirror, chews on it. He also loves a big long lamaze caterpillar we have - he hugs it and chews on it and loves all the textures/sounds and he's forever grabbing the toys on the activity gym above him.

Same old, same old. Bed by 8 and up again around 4am for a quick feed then back to sleep until 7am. Still the occasional night where he's up twice. Naps are STILL hit & miss though. Sometimes he has a long morning nap but then is wide awake until bedtime, other days he'll have 2 x 1hr naps. It's hard to say. Ollie wasn't a fan of naps until 9mths when I got him onto 1 x nap a day and he'd sleep a good 4-5 hours each afternoon. I have a feeling Austin will be similar.

He's had a few days of growth spurts here and there - wanting to nurse every couple of hours and just being a little more discontent. But overall, we are still on the same 4 hourly schedule as last month.

Best moment...
So, there's been a few really sweet moments. The first night Mitch was away, I had just put both the boys to bed and was sitting on the couch. I heard loud baby giggles coming from our room (Austin is still in the co-sleeper) and peeked in to discover that Ollie had snuck out of bed and was in there tickling Austin & making him laugh. Oh so naughty but oh so sweet at the same time :-)

The boys have also started interacting together nicely this past month which makes this mamas heart so happy. Ollie loves getting toys for Austin to hold and he loves to blow raspberries on Austin's tummy, taking any opportunity he can to make Austin smile & laugh. While we are driving, Ollie will pull funny faces at him and Austin just cracks up! Seeing them entertain each other already really is the sweetest thing. I really hope they are going to be good buddies.

Worst moment...
It was the second day Mitch was overseas and it had been a hard afternoon with the boys - bedtime couldn't come soon enough. I burped Austin after his last feed only to have him vomit up a golf ball size chunk of BLOOD. Cue frantic mama. I called our hospital health nurse and got a second opinion from a doctor on call, they told me it was 'normal' and from my milk (although with no soreness/cracks/nothing, I was a bit skeptical). Anyway long story short, we had a follow up with Austin's pediatrician the next morning and he deduced that it was from his nose/throat but perfectly normal given his lack of other symptoms. Not a fun 12 hours - things really do seem more scary when the husband is away, but thankfully our sweet baby boy was fine.

He loves having his face tickled with hair! He smiles and laughs when I lean over him and let my fringe tickle his face. He also loves windy days - he kicks his legs and arms excitedly, grunting and shrieking. He loves watching his big brother - the adoring way he looks up at him always makes me smile.

He hates Ollie's impersonation of a dinosaur. It always makes him cry :-( He also hates traffic. As we discovered on the way back to the hotel from Legoland...

Austin Mitchell, we are all so in love with you. You light up the room with your big infectious smile, sweet giggles and squeezable rolls. I've truly never met a more smiley, mellow baby. Happy 4 months handsome boy!

Austin at 1 month, 2 months & 3 months...

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Friday, July 11, 2014

The second happiest place on earth

Disneyland might be said to be the happiest place on earth, but I think Legoland probably comes a close second. One of our reasons for heading down to Southern California was to check up this theme park; a Lego lovers heaven.

We made the mistake of telling Mr Oliver about our trip a couple of months in advance. Every morning since, he would ask us if it was Legoland time yet (he believed it was Disneyland made out of Legos. He's not that far off really). When the big day FINALLY arrived and we told him it was time to go to the car, he replied with 'no thanks! I stay in hotel and play cars'. Ah, toddlers. Seriously?!?

He was definitely excited once we were there though!

We took it in turns taking Ollie on rides while the other waited with Austin. The lines were all pretty manageable, there was only one ride that had a 60 minute wait and we happily skipped it. I have to say, although Disneyland is a place I would go without kids, Legoland isn't. The rides are pretty much all catered for the younger crowd - even our petite Ollie could ride most of them, there was only a rollercoaster and a couple of other rides he was too short for.

In addition to the rides, there was also a big miniatures section of different US cities.

The rides were cute, the miniatures were well done, but I think my favourite part of Legoland was just seeing all the Lego structures everywhere. There were dragons, animals, Star Wars, a castle, pirates... Everything was made out of Lego. I was a Lego mad kid (as is Ollie), so we thoroughly enjoyed checking out all the Lego works of art.

It was a full on, but fun day! I don't need to go back again in a hurry, but I would love to visit again when the boys are older and we can take them to the Legoland water park... It looked pretty awesome.

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