Monday, November 30, 2009

Final November Blog

So, the month is up and I actually made it. I wrote something for everyday this month. Sometimes it was incredibly short, like when I blogged from my iphone at Dulles Airport during our layover to Europe and others were, ahem, a little long-winded, but I found it wasn't nearly as difficult as I anticipated. Life had a way of creating blogging opportunities, or was it the other way around? Possibly a bit of both. Overall, it was a really fun experience, and I think the grandparents appreciated it the most! Living far away from our families is by far the hardest thing we do! This past month gave me back my "zeal" for blogging, and now that we are here in Vienna I am going to try to continue a fairly consistent blogging regime.

One of the things daily blogging made me appreciate were: comments. Thank you to those who did take the time to comment, emails or offering your own stories, I love stories! For the blogs that I read (and they are many) I do try to come up with a comment to leave for the writer. There are those times that I am a lazy reader though and fail to leave a comment. I think from now on I will be better at commenting. The "Google reader" which gives me a run-down of the blogs I read all in one spot has made it to easy to peruse the new entries and not ever visit the person's actual website therefore not leaving a comment.

Also, I appreciate those writers who have the courage to write about some controversial topics. As my friends and family know I am pretty "hippy dippy" in regards to a lot of areas of life, but would have a hard time writing about those issues for fear of offending someone or "being told off." Because I am so passionate and I have done lots and lots of research and am comfortable with my choices its hard for me to keep my mouth shut, therefore I avoid those topics all-together. So, to you out there, who do talk about the tough stuff, my admiration is great! Granted this blog is about our family and for those who cannot be near to feel a little closer, but still...an occasional heated discussion is always fun!

Jameson is STILL jet-lagged and the sleep deprivation is getting to him (and me). My mellow mellow son is melting down at the slightest thing. Bathes: Check, Dinner: Check, Pajamas: Check, Shoes: Check, Dad leaving: Check, Diaper change: Check, Not being allowed to eat ice cream for dinner: Check, Not following him to the family room when I am eating dinner: Check, Turning off a light: Check. Really, that was my night tonight and it went on and on. So, as I write Jameson is sleeping in his diaper (it wasn't worth the fight) and didn't get to sleep until 9:45pm because he was having a meltdown from when Kevin left at 8:00pm. He finally zonked out, and hopefully he will sleep through the night. My boy needs his sleep. His naps have gone by the wayside in our adjustment period which is a very bad thing, and I know as soon as I can get him waking up in the morning at a decent time, down for a nap at the perfect time bedtime will surely follow.

A frequent sight in our household recently

A little dramatics never hurt, right?

I am reading "The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers" By Elizabeth Pantley. This is the ONLY sleep book that I feel understands our needs, which is funny because I wasn't a fan of her first book targeted at babies. She has a WHOLE chapter devoted to night nursings/wakings, and since its up to preschool the assumption is that the child is in a "Big Kid" bed, which Jameson has been for months now. Jameson has always been on a strict sleep schedule, and the boy was an incredible sleeper his first 5 months of life...then we came to Vienna and he has been waking up twice a night ever since. Believe it or not most of the time it doesn't bother me. For the most part he is easy to get back down (nursing for a few minutes) but as we begin the end of our nursing relationship he will need to find other ways to get back to sleep. She has a lot of great suggestions and as a long-term nurser herself she understands that relationship and I have begun incorporating the suggestions into our routine.

On a completely unrelated-to-sleep-note, my great eater turned picky eater when we arrived back in the states has returned to his former great eater self (tonight being the major exception). All I keep thinking: is food really THAT bad in the states? Scary.

Bring on December!!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

A Day at the Zoo

Today was a nice enough day to head down to the zoo. We live one short strassenbahn ride away from it. Jameson and I went often last year, and I think we will be going a lot this year too. The zoo is on the Summer Palace grounds called Schoenbrunn Palace. We actually have a great view of it walking down our street. The zoo is over 250 years old! I cannot even imagine what it must have been like 250 years ago! The Hapburgs (the ruling dynasty of the Austrian Empire) were animal fanatics, and hunters (are they one and the same?) They have a ton of stuffed animals from safaris in the Natural history museum and apparently they kept a lot of live animals as well.

While it is a small zoo, there are all the important animals to see: Lions, Tigers, Elephants, Pandas, Monkeys, Bears, with some added bonuses along the way. Jameson was in a bit of a funk throughout our trip. He only wanted to chase the pigeons and ravens on the grounds. Polar Bear? What Polar Bear, give me a pigeon. The craziest and coolest thing is how close you can get to the animals because the enclosures are so small and RIGHT there. We had a tiger inches from us as he strolled by the glass window. Wow, that tail was HUGE and those paws... That made Jameson a little nervous when I tried to put him down to take a picture of the incredible sight. Perhaps he will get braver as we go more often. It being the end of November there weren't a lot of people at the zoo, but more than I was expecting.

Schoenbrunn grounds are very awesome. There are hiking trails, a Christkindlmarkt (christmas market), restaurants, theaters, fountains, a hedge maze, The Palmenhaus which is this massive greenhouse that is built in the art noveau style. We had such a fun time hanging out, and I hadn't realized that Kevin had never been to that side of Schoenbrunn. We will definitely be making a return trip soon!
In front of the Cheetah enclosure

Being pulled by Dad in the (free) wagon.

He hopped out of the wagon SO fast, he could not wait to take his picture with the Elephant!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Shaking the sillies out in the garden

As predicted we had a very easy going day today. We had planned on going to the zoo, but due to rain I decided not to go. However, by this afternoon Jameson was a crazy dude. Running around, jumping up and down, turning circles and falling all over. These are all symptoms of cabin fever in our house. So, I put a coat on him and we headed out back where he got to run and chase his wiggles away.

Since I have mentioned the back garden numerous times I decided to post a picture of Jameson frolicking through the it. It is such a great area and I am sure we will be out there a lot this year.

At the moment I have a little boy who is over cuddling with his Daddy because he has woken up three times since 8:30. I think its time I tried to put him down again. I was really hoping we were through the jet lag!! No such luck!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Time to breathe

Since landing on Monday, we haven't had much time to recover. We hit the ground running. With Thanksgiving Day to prepare, there was a lot to do. Today Kevin took a few of the students on a brewery tour and then this evening we had a "Ganslessen" (Goose dinner) with the wonderful teachers from our German language school. Through it all Jameson has been a trooper, more than a trooper, he has been awesome. Last night, we didn't get home until 11 pm and he was still in a great, happy mood if not a little hyper (perhaps the full piece of pumpkin pie?)

Today we went to a park, then bought some groceries. After that we came home and played in the back garden. He took a good nap, we loaded him up and went to a beautiful heuriger (wine restaurant) in the vineyards above Vienna for our Ganslessen. Jameson made a couple of friends, one was a little girl named Lea who was about one, and then he was following a boy of about five and a girl of around seven all around the room. You know your baby is getting old when they are playing "peek-a-boo" with the younger one, and looking at you as if to say, "isn't this a cute little baby?" I love watching Jameson with kids younger than he because he is so gentle and so kind. He walked with Lea and played with her and kissed her on the cheek. He even let her grab his nose and his hair. (I think she was jealous as he has a head full of hair and she had very little). He would put his hands on his knees to bend down and talk to her, and it made me laugh. He is even great at sharing his toys, or in this case his crayons and pad of paper. I am hoping his attitude regarding babies means he will be a good future older brother.
Jameson coloring at our Ganslessen

I am pretty happy that we are done with our "duties" for awhile. We need to get Jameson back on his schedule. His normal bedtime is 7:00pm. Between jet-lag and holiday parties we haven't come close to that. I am hoping that his 7:00 o'clock bedtime won't come as such a shock tomorrow night. The problem is that 7:00pm here is 11:00 am in Denver, which is his nap-time. I realized this when he woke up two nights in a row at about 10:00pm ready to play until 2:30 or 3:00 in the morning (so that translates to 6:30 or 7:00pm Denver time). I am really hoping that the two "off" days will help him adjust to the time here, because I am worked! This round of jet-leg has been the worse yet, because he can get out of bed, walk around, go play, whereas before Kevin and I would sit him between us on the bed and sleep around him while he entertained himself until he got sleepy. I won't say we are out of the woods yet, but it does look promising!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We were thinking of all of our family and friends!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

We cooked and baked


We ate our meal (and dessert)


Now, with full bellies and thankful hearts we sleep and wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Pumpkin Pie Baking

Baking pumpkin pies with my very jet-laggin' boy at 10:30pm. Need I say more? Sorry for the recurring theme in my posts lately, I am sure this theme will continue for a few more days. Hopefully not beyond that though. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone tomorrow! We always have a great feast with our students here in Vienna. Now, while I wait for the first pumpkin pie to bake I am onto the cranberries.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Jet-lag is a cruel and unusual punishment for a 20-month-old.

Yes, truly a cruel and unusual punishment. Kevin and I went to bed at midnight fully expecting a wide awake boy at around 3:00 am. Sure enough, 2:30 we hear him walking around the foyer trying to find us. I brought him out to the family room, and he was absolutely thrilled to be awake. He immediately began playing with his "new" toys. It took me a good fifteen minutes to even wake-up, but 2:30 am is a little early for me to begin drinking coffee. Then he wanted me to read some books, in German no less. Ummm, he scratched that idea when I yawned through the first page.

Luckily, he entertained himself quite well. Then I turned on the slingbox (connected to our Denver tv through the internet) so he could watch a tv show "On Demand." After that he still wasn't tired, so I asked him if he was hungry (a common reason I wake up when I am jet-lagged. He said yes, so I got him some cheese crackers. At 4:15 when he was tired, but awake I moved us to his bedroom where I turned on his portable DVD with the "Little Einsteins." He watched a couple episodes while I fell asleep. After his episodes were over he woke me up and passed me his DVD. It must have been 5:00am, but I didn't check the time.

At around 7:00am he tried to wake up. TRIED is the word. He absolutely could not open his eyes. I was watching him, he literally could not peel his eyes open and it was frustrating to him. Apparently, the two of us ended up sleeping until nearly 11:00am when Kevin came in to wake us up.

We got some grocery shopping done, and then I brought Jameson back to the house to see if he would take a late nap. No way. He was so hyper he was running around the apartment jumping up and down (sorry people below us) and squealing. I had one more shopping run to make so I brought him along to get him outside. He ran up our hill, so happy to be outside. In the store he was running circles around me while I held his hand. People were look at me with pity because of my crazy kid. Ha ha.

When we got home I put the groceries away and brought him down to the garden behind our apartment house. He explored the garden, picking up leaves and throwing them, checking out every bush, and every tree. Then he decided he wanted to run races from wall to wall. Fine by me. When he came in, he was much more sane. He ate dinner, took a bath and proceeded to crash quicker than I could believe. Here's to hoping that he sleeps through the night.

Monday, November 23, 2009

My Amazing Traveler

We left the house at 6am Denver time. We arrived at the Denver airport and got on our flight to DC. Jameson had some books, toys and a blank notebook with crayons. We also carried a portable DVD player with a few "Little Einsteins" DVDs. We had three hours in the DC airport. When we arrived in our concourse, it was empty, I mean REALLY empty. We got to our gate which happened to be right across from my favorite sandwich place, Potbelly Stove Sandwiches (or something to that extent). Jameson then proceeded to run up and down the "C" concourse for the next two hours, got tired and sat with his dad. I was hoping we would catch the lull and that he would fall asleep sleep pretty quickly. I was right. He fell asleep almost as soon as we were in the air, and I got to watch a whole movie (The Time Travelers Wife) and eat dinner without a child pestering me. About 5 minutes before the lights went off he woke up. He was awake the whole time the lights were off. Right around the time I was hitting my wall and we were a couple hours from Munich he fell asleep again, through breakfast so I got a mini nap as well.

Getting ready for the first take-off of the day. He was SO excited! To him being in a plane is like being in an episode of the Little Einsteins.

Feeling like a "Big Boy" in his own seat.

On our flight to Munich, waiting for Take-Off, intently coloring.

Getting very sleepy!


And he's gone.


Upon arrival in Munich we walked to the baggage claim, where our bags greeted us right as we walked out (I love when that happens) and we headed to the train ticket booth. I love that I greeted the young woman in German and she responded all in German! She put us on a train to Vienna via the East Munich train station and Salzburg. We assumed it would be something like that. We were on a very slow, late train to Salzburg. Luckily the conductor asked us where we were going, then told us to get off in Freilassing to catch the train we needed into Vienna. She said it was a much easier transfer. It was right across the track, and we would not have made it in Salzburg. We found out the train originated at the Munich Main station. Those computers, grrr. We could have just gone to the Munich train station where we would have had 30 minutes to grab a bite before sitting on a train and not worrying about a transfer. Oh well, it ended up working out. Jameson fell asleep hard on the train to Wien, and was zonked the whole time. I also hit my wall and Kevin passed me his Mamut fleece to lay my head on because my head kept doing that funny up/down nod/flop. Vienna was absolutely beautiful today!! It was so nice to be home.

When I was opening our front door I looked at Jameson and asked if he remembered this place and he said "JA!" (pronounced YAH!) I wish I got it on tape, because it was a mixture of elation and joy I assume about being some place other than a plane or a train, but there was so much memory in his voice and it was also like a "Duh! Of course I remember this place." He ran all around our apartment and headed straight for his toys. He pulled them all out and started playing with them. We all took an afternoon nap and had trouble waking up this evening for dinner. Jameson was done! A car horn woke him up and he was not happy. After 24 hours of traveling and not one bit of complaint from him I didn't mind. He had a mini-meltdown that lasted ten minutes, then my bribe of chocolate worked. It evened out his blood sugar, then he was interested in eating the sausage and french fries. After dinner he took a warm bath, cuddled a bit and was ready to go back to bed. Which is where he is now and where I am on my way.

Thanks for keeping us in your thoughts. Our traveling day went off without a hitch and I was so impressed with my 20-month-old. He never fails to blow us away with how easy he is to travel with, and how unflappable he manages to be, even under little sleep and barely any food. Sometimes I don't know how we got so lucky to get such an amazing boy in our lives.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Leaving on a jet plane...

We are sitting at Dulles airport waiting to board our flight to Munich. So far Jameson has been awesome! Thanks to Scott and Erika for taking us to the airport at 6am. If you see an airplane flying in the sky think of us arriving safe and sound in Munich!! Sorry this is so short! Does it still count for my daily blog?? Hopefully, I will be back to blogging by you Monday afternoon once we are settled.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Last minute details

Today was a lot of running around and getting stuff done. More than I imagined, as usual. However, we did get to spend a great evening with Scott, Erika, Elia, Eden and Soren.

My sleepless son struck again, and lets just say that as of 11:15 he was still awake walking around. Luckily, he is in bed now, sleeping for another few hours.

Wish us luck.

Friday, November 20, 2009

New Pics

Doesn't everyone love when they plug in the camera to their computer and up pop all these pictures you a) didn't know you had or b) totally forgot about in the hustle and bustle of life? Well, that just happened to me. Yippee!! Before I hit the hay I am going to post them, but since it was an incredibly long day, I am going to bed before 11pm. I did manage to get all of our packing done last night, but I was up until nearly 2am trying to get everything arranged and re-arranged.

Way back at the end of September we took a trip down to Oklahoma City to visit with Mom and Dad Archer as well as a couple of study abroad fairs. It was such a great trip, and we did a lot of fun things, but the camera never made it back into my hands until today.


My awesome little traveler. He loves packing his bag and being on the go.

Feeding the ducks (and geese) with Nana

Playing with Poppa

While in Oklahoma we also went to Sayre to visit Kevin's Grandparents Archer. Kevin is SO lucky. He still has three living grandparents. It is such a special experience each time Jameson gets to meet his great-grandparents, we try to document these visits so that even if he doesn't have the memories he has the photographs and the stories.


The four "boys."

Grandpa and Grandma Archer


Our family pic. Jameson's new pose is to cuddle in and say "Cheese!" Unfortunately, it doesn't make for a great photograph of him lately.

Today we went to visit Kevin's Grandpa Bailey. He lives about an hour and a half away. I wish we could have stayed a bit longer, but we had errands to run and some of Grandpa's friends were in a play. Its always so nice to see him and he seems to enjoy us too.

Jameson was squirming, if you can't tell.


Like I said, Kevin is so lucky to have grandparents, and by default I get them now too!


OK my bed is calling. Tomorrow is going to start early.

Vienna countdown: 2 days. We leave at O-dark-hundred on Sunday morning, so I shouldn't even count it!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Packing

This is what I have been doing all week. I have been washing, drying, folding, collecting and putting items in our guest room. Tonight I wanted to get it all packed, and my son decided tonight was the night it was going to take him two hours to go to bed. How do they always know when you are anxious for them to fall asleep? So long Grey's. So long Private Practice, luckily I have you DVR'd. With a few article exceptions that are a) still drying b) still in the wash pile or c) still in the undecided pile, this is what the three of us will be wearing for the next two and half months. What you cannot see in this picture are the two turkey roasting pans we are bringing over, the four bags of stuffing and two large cans of pumpkin, but those items are in the room too. Also you cannot see our carry-on pile, but know that it is large and growing. With anticipation of what may or may not entertain a 20-month-old I am packing all sorts of goodies. Now I have to keep the dogs out of the room or they will begin to freak out (more than usual). Don't you wish you could be here to help out? Lucky me. Back to packing. Vienna Countdown: 3 Days....with two incredibly busy days tomorrow and Saturday. Wish us luck!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I love my husband!!!

Today my awesome husband surprised me with this beautiful machine pictured below. I have been pining (and possibly whining) for one since they re-introduced the 13". Beautiful. Some of you may remember my computer completely failed last spring. Luckily it was the power connector and not the hard-drive so we were able to save all the information. My so very tech-saavy brother-in-law popped my hard-drive in a new compute and voila a new old computer. I still pined and pined. Apparently my message was heard loud and clear and that is one of the mizillion reasons I love my husband. Thanks babe!!! I love you!!



Vienna countdown: 4 days!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Our Crazy Dogs

As we are getting ready to leave for Vienna (yikes, 5 days...) I am writing a guide for our dog/house-sitter and I get to realize, our dogs are nuts! Kevin and I have three dogs. I brought one into the relationship: Lulu and he brought one: Lexi. Technically we own one together, Leopold, but he claims he was forced into it. My argument says his name is on the ownership certificate, therefore Leopold is his dog too. Really it doesn't matter, because no matter which dog which is misbehaving or annoying either of us we make the bold statement: "S/he is YOUR dog!" or "Those are YOUR dogs!" Still we love them, and we hate leaving them every year. This certainly does not help their neurotic tendencies any.

For example, Leopold obviously knows something is up, he will not leave my side. If I sit he wants to be not just sitting with me, but on me, kissing me and having me reassure him what a good dog he is now. When Jameson and I are playing on the floor Leopold wants to be right next to me, in the way of the trains or puzzle, whatever we are doing. It is driving me batty.

Here is an excerpt of quirks for our wonderful dog-sitter:

Leopold- (Never Leo) The male, black and tan Cavalier King Charles spaniel. 5 years old. He is the “Leader of the Pack.” He can be a jerk to the girls occasionally. He is shy around new people and still gets scared by fast movement. He is very protective of the girls especially Lexi (see below). He sleeps under the bed, but will occasionally get up on the bed to cuddle in the middle of the night. Be careful he is an underwear stealer; he will chew on a pair of underwear rendering them trash. His hobby is watching out the window (any window) and barking at passing people, cars, bikes, birds, cats or bunnies. This hobby of his makes us nutty. Don’t hesitate to spray him with the spray bottle if he goes crazy. He is also the dog most easily trained. He is eager to please and once he trusts you, he will be your liege following you everywhere. He is a toy hoard and a food bastard. Leopold is a wonderful dog for the most part, however he won’t hesitate to run out an open door, so you need to be careful, as Cavaliers are very stupid about cars. Leopold is also a “fence fighter.” We have a pit-bull next door on the left side looking into the backyard and a chow-mix behind us. Needless to say, either of these dogs would kick Leopold’s butt in a fight. We absolutely DO NOT let him fence fight. As soon as we hear the ruckus we have to run out and carry him inside. If you notice Leopold shedding a lot (like an obscene amount) it is because he gets stressed when we leave town or if he feels a change is on the horizon. We add 1 or 2 Tablespoons fish oil (or olive oil) to his feed. It is nothing to worry about, except you will need to vacuum more frequently.

Lexi-The little, white/red (Blenheim) Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. 6.5 years old. The only way to describe Lexi is neurotic. She freaks out about everything. She will pick up on a subtle clue that you will be leaving for the day (shoes, keys, putting a sweatshirt on, or hey, even getting out of bed may set her off). She is also afflicted with OCD. She will lick like crazy! Herself, you, the other dogs anything she can wrap her little tongue around. She is the worst underwear stealer and WILL demolish a pair of underwear or sometimes socks in a matter of seconds. We call her the scavenger. Her hobby is eating/chewing up anything edible or not. Think q-tips, tissues, underwear, socks, paper, plastic or wooden toys…and the list goes on. Just be careful what ends up on the floor at any given time. Lexi is also the most needy. If you sit down she will want to be in your lap, she is the best cuddle-er. She snores ridiculously loudly for a 12-pound dog. She also has “episodes.” She hyperventilates and can’t catch her breath when she gets too excited or stressed out. Usually she will calm down after a few minutes, but it sometimes helps if you pick her up and pet her. She will sleep on the bed with you and she is the best 107° heater on a cold night. She is a bed hog and very difficult to move in the middle of the night. We jokingly refer to her as “sticky paws” as she has some serious kung-fu-like moves to stay rooted to her spot. She will insist that you pick her up and place her on the bed like the princess that she is, and then in the morning she will request oh-so-kindly that you place her on the floor (Not really it sounds more like a monkey screech).

Lulubelle- (Lulu, unless she is in trouble) Big red/white dog, 6.5 years old. The Matriarch, the old maid, the grumpy lady. She was the cutest, sweetest little puppy, but somewhere along the path of unrequited motherhood and having to share her home with two dumb dogs (her words, not mine) she has gotten grumpy. She lives to eat and sleep. She will let you know when its dinner time every night at 4:30 or 5:00 pm by nosing her bowl all around the kitchen. She won't go upstairs until the last person decides its bed time and even then you will often have to wake her out of a deep sleep. Most likely she will glare at you. She is very independent and not nearly as neurotic as the other dogs, but she has her moments. She is persistent and when she wants something she will bark and bark and bark. If you leave the pantry door open she will rummage through the food bag eating her fill. You will most likely have to force her out the door in the morning to go potty as she is not a morning-dog. She is happy to sleep the morning away. You will also have to force her out the door at night, as she is not a night-dog. If she just stands on the patio looking at you, that is fine, just let her back in, it is not a battle you will win. She must have a water bowl in the bedroom at night. That is the one reason she will wake you up. If the bowl is full she will take a drink and go back to sleep. Her hobby is watching TV. She can pick out an animal on TV from across the room and she will bark until it leaves the screen. If you feel like entertainment, watch a movie with dogs in it, Lulu will bark at the TV and Leopold thinks its at the front door. It will last about 5 minutes before you decide enough is enough. She may choose to sleep on a pillow next to your head, but lately she has only been sleeping under the bed. If she gets cold, she will hop up on the bed nosing her way under the covers, she expects you to lift up the covers so she can burrow to the end. Out of all the dogs she is by far the most demanding, but also in a way, easier because she doesn't require as much cuddling and attention.

Even with all their quirks I love our dogs and our lives wouldn't be the same without them. The fact is that they sleep about 18 to 20 hours/day so they aren't actually a lot of work. Jameson thinks they are the best friends ever. At times, I believe, he even thinks he is a dog. His newest thing is to "kiss" like the dogs and he proceeds to lick and slurp our cheeks and says "woof." He often crawls around on all fours, "head butting" the dogs like they do to each other and has even tried their dog kibble on occasion when he is throwing them a handful. Good thing we use the good stuff. He loves that Lulu naps with him, and Lexi is always up for a cuddle. Leopold, well, he is just fun to chase around and make nervous. I will miss my doggies for the few months we are gone, I just got used to having them around again.

Monday, November 16, 2009

German Pancakes

I love cooking, so does my husband. He is the gourmet chef and I am the homecookin' chef. He has a knack for knowing how much of this or how much of that to add, I follow a recipe. Over the years I have learned a lot from him, I have learned to cook stuff I might never have attempted and I do it without a recipe. Whoa! And it tastes good too. Occasionally I like to surprise him though and cook something for him.

The other morning I woke up and felt like eating a German Pancake. A what? you say. A german pancake. It is super easy and super yummy. The only issue that I can tell is its difficult to cook more than one at a time in a small oven and the cook time is 18 minutes or so.

The recipe of course, uses gluten-free flour, but feel free to use regular flour.

The recipe courtesy of Bob's Red Mill Flour, but its pretty standard one.
1/4 GF flour
1/2 C. Milk
1 Tbsp. Butter
3 Eggs

Pre-heat the oven to 425 Farenheit. Add the Milk and Eggs to the Blender and mix. Then add the flour, mix again. Melt the butter in a 9-inch pie pan in warm oven. (We have exactly one, hence the reason it takes so long to make breakfast). Add the mixture to the pan and cook for 18 minutes or until puffy and golden brown. Traditionally its serve with applesauce and powdered sugar. It tastes crepe like but without the difficulty of flipping the crepe. This recipe claims to make four pancakes but I only got three, we definitely could have used the 4th. In the future I would double the recipe. It was a really fast and easy breakfast and Kevin loved them.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Not As Successful Sunday

We definitely had more than one accident today. I would say for every successful pee we had there was a not-so-successful one. The morning began with an accident and I think it went back and forth all day. It was snowy outside so Jameson wanted to follow Kevin out to shovel the back patio, even as I was zipping up his snowsuit I thought to myself this is an "accident" waiting to happen. Sure enough when he came in ten minutes later his long johns were wet.

He seemed really tired today and not really into the "fun" of potty training anymore, apparently it had lost it luster. It didn't help that he had more accidents today than yesterday when he had almost all successful pees. In following the ideas in the "Potty Boot Camp," I made a big deal about how Mommy was sad when he peed in his underwear and walked him back and forth to the potty after an accident. It backfired, in my opinion. He got stubborn, angry and didn't even want to attempt to sit on his potty. I ditched those ideas and just worked on keeping the potty experience a positive one. Heavy on the praise and silly dances, light or non-existent on the negative messages. After each accident I would ask him what happened? Then I would say something like: Oh, its no fun to have wet pants, lets go sit on the toilet and see if you can pee again. That seemed to work much better. Also another suggestion that didn't have the intended effect was making him "clean up" his underwear, carpet/floor, rinsing off in the bathtub and throwing his underwear in the washing machine. No matter how "unfun" I tried to make it, Jameson LOVES cleaning up, he LOVES helping to clean, and he LOVES taking a bath where he gets to do all the work this was not a bad thing in his eyes. Even when he peed in the toilet he would take his underwear off to "clean" in the sink.

After a rough morning, and barely a nap in the afternoon, he was stir-crazy and tired. We would march into the bathroom he would pee and jump up to flush the pee and clean out the bowl only to pee at the sink. I realized he was jumping up as soon as the first tinkle hit the bowl, so I kept having to tell him. "More, can you make more pee?" Each time he could "make" more pee. I was tired and wondering if I shouldn't just throw diapers on him, but he seems to "get it" it just might take a few more days for him to initiate the process. He still only wants to wear underwear and throws the diaper across the room if I present that as an option.

On a happier note he did manage to poop in the toilet late this afternoon. He was VERY proud of himself and got two chocolates, a crazy mom AND a crazy dad shouting "Yay!"

So, while I don't feel today was as successful as yesterday I would still call today a success. He could tell me if he had to pee or poop when I asked, while he didn't always get the toilet he is becoming aware of those functions. I broke out on my own and am going to work with a hodge-podge of suggestions from the book.

I can tell you what book I do NOT suggest. "Potty Train in Three Days" by Louis Kleint, M.A., Ed. There was no depth whatsoever to her suggestions throughout the book. Beside that, in the question/answer section of the book, in response to a question about bed-wetting, she makes the claim that bed-wetting is the fault of the child and a parent should deem this behavior "unacceptable." Therefore no excuses or sympathy is warranted for the offending child. While I agree that diapering a child at night can send a confusing message, I think each parent has to weigh the situation and child. I know that Jameson is a HEAVY wetter. I change him once in the middle of the night or he would wake up soaked through every morning.

Beyond that she recounts a story from a mother whose eldest child wet the bed until he/she was 12 and the mother feared her other child would be the same. The author states "To believe such things, or to speak this in the child's hearing, merely reinforces the negative behavior and gives both of you an excuse to avoid proper potty training." She constantly refers to bed-wetting as a "behavior" issue as in "realize this is not necessary or acceptable behavior." Wow, talk about antiquated theory. She is obviously from the generation that believes a bed-wetter is a lazy child who would rather pee in their bed then get up to use the toilet. Actually, studies have shown that bed-wetters have pituitary issues. The brain doesn't signal their bladder/kidneys to stop producing urine. Bed-wetters don't wake up and weigh the option of going or not going to the toilet, it simply is not an option. On top of that, it is an entirely humiliating experience, they certainly don't need to be punished by parents each morning. As if a child would choose to sleep in wet sheets and pajamas each night, choose not to sleep over at friend's houses and fear summer camp. Most of the time the persistent bed-wetting stops at puberty (not because they realize they should use the toilet) but because as their hormones arrive in droves it kick-starts the missing pituitary message. To think a parent might have no idea about this issue and punish a child for the persistent bed-wetting is enough to make me see red.

Moving on...Only one more week until we leave for Vienna. Yikes!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A Very Successful Saturday

Jameson has been fighting diapers recently. REALLY fighting them, and he really isn't much of a fighter. The hysterics that would ensue during a diaper change were a little ridiculous. I couldn't imagine that he was ready to make the switch, but we have been preparing for a few months now. We bought a potty chair in June and it has sat in front of the tv, in his bedroom, in our bedroom and the pot part of it has been used as a bucket in the bathtub. All the while it just sat there totally unused for its purpose. He was getting used to it, getting to know the toilet. Ha ha.

Fast forward to this week. I received my research material (aka potty training books). I picked up a few pairs of training pants in anticipation of the day he might be ready. Also they happen to be cheaper here than in Vienna.

After a battle today I decided, what the heck, we would try the underpants, if he got tired of them or it wasn't working I would fight the battle later. I decided to use the "The Potty Boot Camp" By Dr. Suzanne Riffel. Mainly because it was a quick easy read and it seemed like I could follow her suggestions. We had already done the prep work, so we moved on to the the first lesson.

The idea is to spend a few days at home, ditch the diapers for good and permanently move to the underwears. I gave him the option of wearing a diaper or putting on the underwear, but I told him, if he chose the underwear he would have to go "pee" and "poop" in his potty. He nodded his head. The hardest part was actually getting him to "make" pee for the first time. Sitting on the potty for five minutes was hard (my child is active) but I set him up with "The Little Einsteins" on an iPod and he was very content. We read books, and it was during "Barnyard Dance" that he peed. (Yet another reason to love the book!) He had one accident before he had actually peed in the toilet and it was my fault, I knew he should "try" to go because it had been a while, but he was enjoying washing his hands (read warm running water doesn't mix with a potty training child). He stayed dry through his nap and for the rest of the day. After the first time he peed in the potty he totally got it. After that it happened very quickly. A minute or less he was on, he was off. He wanted a high five and knuckles. His favorite part is flushing the stuff down the toilet then washing the bowl out to put back into his potty chair. I am so proud of him tonight I could burst. He is 20-months-old! Even if we totally go backwards tomorrow, I am STILL proud of him! I could tell that he was pretty darn proud of himself too. At bedtime he acted like such a "big boy."
Jameson with his loyal subjects.

Notice the large water bottle, as the book advised I got him fruit juice, and all he wanted was water.

Now the book of choice today was "Everyone Poops" By Taro Gomi. He would say "boop" on every page, but he loves the page which has a Giraffe, a Lion, A Gorilla, a Crane and a little boy eating. He goes through all of the animal sounds, then turns the page and says "boop!" I love it. That is what we are taking on tomorrow, wish me luck.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Flashback Friday

I am nearly at the middle of the month and definitely feeling a lack of blogging ideas today so I am borrowing an idea from high school and now blog friend Bridget and telling a story from the past. This is from my first trip to Vienna in 2001. Little did I realize I would continue to go back again and again for years to come. Oh, how I wish I paid better attention in my high school German classes!!

The week of Thanksgiving my parents came to visit me. My mom arrived a couple of days before Thanksgiving and helped prepare quite the feast which included two solid days of cooking. My dad met us in Salzburg, but not before my mom and I had managed to do the Sound of Music tour, bummer for him. We had a lovely weekend in Salzburg and headed back to Vienna for the rest of their stay. I was so happy to have them with me. I have always liked my parents and was thrilled when they made the trip reservations. I really enjoyed showing them around Vienna. All of the students were feeling a bit "parentless" around this time of year and for most of us it had been our first holidays away from home. I remember my mom gave out many many "mom-hugs."

My parents wanted to do something special for my friends and take them out to dinner. Most of the students were thrilled at the prospect of a free meal. Who wouldn't be? We headed downtown and our map-guru had come across a cool looking restaurant called 1516. We had never been, but it looked pretty good. We headed upstairs to find a booth. Come to find out this restaurant served beer in pitchers. It must be the only place where beer was served in pitchers in Vienna. When my dad asked how many pitchers we would need he was met with an, "ummmm, welll, uhhhhh...."

I suppose I should preface that I attended a Nazarene University. For those of you who don't know what that means; they are a socially conservative Christian church and one of their tenets is the avoidance of alcohol. Actually, it was "illegal" for us to drink alcohol. We had one "strike" with consequences and then on our second "strike" we were kicked to the curb. Needless to say we got very good at "not" drinking or at least not talking about it. I grew up in a home where alcohol was not an evil thing and there was often wine around the house (not for the consumption of minors, mind you, but for my parents).

Once my friends had gotten over the shock that my dad had asked if they wanted beer and more than that, he was willing to pay for it they readily took him up on his offer. Every single student commented to me how cool it was that I could tell my parents I drank. I remember just laughing with my parents and friends all evening. It was a fun night as we rehashed the term for my parents over great food that included a cheeseburger!

A few of us posing for a picture with my parents.
*I am aware the date on the photo says 10/27, but it was probably 11/27.

Actually, Kevin and I still go there to eat occasionally, and I cannot help but mention and laugh over the night my parents took my friends out and paid for their beer and food.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

So much to do, so little time

I say that every year about now. Nine days until take-off. Wow! On one hand it feels like we just got back from Vienna, but on the other I think of everything we have done since May 1, how much Jameson has grown and it feels like forever ago. Believe it or not it is really hard for us to pack up and leave for Vienna every year. I find myself dragging my feet, putting off what needs to be done only to stress the last few days we are in town. To help me get excited I like to look at pictures from past years. So, in no particular order here are some of the reasons I am so excited to be back in the city of my heart.

Best meal ever, definitely NOT gluten-free...Sorry Kev!

If you look very closely up the street you can see our bright gold apartment building!


I love Christmastime in Vienna

See...how could you not love that?


The National Library


Vienna is the city of Coffee Houses


The Rathaus (townhall)


Public Transportation

The very cool parks everywhere

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Love you

This is what I say to Jameson possibly hundreds of times a day. I recently told Kevin that it was one phrase I couldn't wait to hear from the mouth of my babe. Well, I heard it today, but it was directed at the dogs. Not exactly the scenario I had imagined in my head all those months. I made him repeat it, and it was still directed toward the dogs. It may have even been Lulu's name (he says wu-wu for Lulu) but I am pretty sure this was a "wuh wu." So, being me, I said, "Jameson can you say: 'Love you Momma?'" and he did. He said it. "Wuh wu, Ma" with a big hug around the neck. Ahhhh, heart melted. I had to yell down the stairs to Kevin who was sitting in his office and ask if he heard it, for the record's sake. Even writing about it makes me feel warm and loved.

I was really lucky today. I got many precious moments today. Kevin gets home from teaching Wednesdays at 6:15 or so, and as soon as Jameson hears the garage he is up in a flash running towards the door. He absolutely cannot wait to greet his Daddy. I love it. It never gets old. Hears the garage, sprints to the door so that he can say "hi" and grab his hand to follow him to the nearest ball.

Part of Jameson's bedtime ritual is saying good night and giving kisses to the dogs and Kevin. If there are other people visiting they also get kisses and good nights. Jameson was in Kevin's arms when I asked Kev if he wanted to read the stories tonight. He had just gotten home from lecturing which is pretty exhausting so he gave me this: "Not tonight, I'm tired look." Jameson was having none of this, he obviously, heard and understood this conversation. When Kevin tried to hand him back to me to take up the stairs, Jameson wrapped his arms around Kevin's neck. We asked if he wanted Daddy to read his stories and he very enthusiastically said yes (or something like an affirmation). So we all trooped upstairs where Jameson began piling books next to Kevin on the bed. I soon noticed he had handed Kevin all his German language books. I started laughing (he never wants ME to read those books). Now, don't get me wrong Kevin speaks German, but he gets self-conscious in front of me, because I laugh at him. So I am a mean wife, but it sounds so cute. Apparently Jameson shares in my joy of teasing Kevin about his accent. What can I say my son has my sense of humor. He loved having his dad read to him, German accent and all. He had a smile that went ear to ear. During "Barnyard Dance" he made him read the first page over and over, just so he could stomp his feet and clap his hands. After one book was finished he would bring another and another. I definitely think this is a ritual that should be continued.

I love my precious moments with my boys. I love watching Jameson and Kevin interact. Just this morning Jameson went over to Kevin's side of the bed and began having a conversation with him that was obviously hysterical, because he kept cracking himself up. We can't for the life of us understand him, but we love that we are getting closer and closer to the day we will be able to understand him. Kevin just kept nodding and laughing back which made Jameson laugh even harder.

I am so lucky to have such awesome boys in my life. Everyday reminds me how much I love them. I love that Jameson has so much Kevin in him, because it helps me imagine what Kevin was like as a little guy. I could go on and on but I won't.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A Perfect Fall Day

Today Jameson and I dropped Kevin off at class and then went to Bruegger's Bagels. Jameson had a plain buttered bagel and I got to have my ultimate favorite: An everything bagel with Bacon Scallion spread. Mmmm....

After a fun breakfast where Jameson met a new friend and they proceeded to laugh at each other's funny faces we headed to an area called Cherry Creek, we had some errands to run. I love this particular area of Denver. It is urban chic. Awesome restaurants, cool stores, an old-fashioned ice cream parlor, and everything is within walking distance. We got there about 9:30 and none of the stores opened until 10:00 so we strolled our way all around, looking into windows, greeting everyone on the street. Just enjoying the sunshine and unusually warm, but crisp day. When we got to Nordy's (I love that store) I immediately found Jameson some shoes (the boy has HUGE feet: 8.5). I was looking for waterproof shoes in an 8.5 that he could wear with everything, jeans, chinos, nicer pants. He only gets one pair of shoes in Vienna. Ha ha. Well, not only did I find the perfect pair but they were on SALE. Whoo hooo. Love that half-yearly sale! They look like a nice hiking boot by Sperry, and they are gore-tex. Awesome. Then I picked up some make-up for me, and then I found some great deals at Baby Gap too. Jameson was even a great shopper this morning. Note to self: go shop in the mornings. Normally he has had enough after one store. We hit up all the stores we needed to and then headed back to DU (University of Denver) to pick up Kevin. Then to top off our nice morning we had lunch at Chipotle which is one of the easy gluten-free restaurants where Kevin can eat.

Overall, it was a great day, and I got to cross more stuff off my list. Now if only I could find a cute, waterproof shoe that I can wear with any sort of outfit. Any suggestions?

Monday, November 9, 2009

A no nap kind of day

Jameson did not sleep today, at all. This is not normal for him. The boy needs his sleep and for the most part he doesn't ever fight it. Today was just one of those days he was going to fight it. Its hard for me when he doesn't sleep because I really like my hour to do what I want or need to do. Instead I end up wrestling with a 20-month-old trying to convince him to lay down and close his eyes.

Today he wanted the dogs to sleep with him in his bed, which is normally just fine, but today it was a distraction. He wanted to cuddle with Lexi and "pretend" to sleep. He does a very funny impression of snoring. He can't get the snort, but he breathes really heavy and this is how he mimics sleep. All that to say, it was a LONG day. No nap days are no fun, more than that he is exhausted by the time its bedtime and this evening was no exception. Meltdowns from 2:30pm on. He was very upset when I took his pants off to change his diaper, then he didn't want a new diaper put on. These weren't tantrum tears, they were just tears of pure exhaustion and frustration. He doesn't cry often so I feel so badly when he does have these days. To top the no nap day he is teething big time (still!) and when he is teething he doesn't eat much. So that means he was hungry on AND tired, never a good combo. Since putting him down at 7pm he has already been up once. Something about his blanket, since the blanket got tossed down the stairs I am guessing he was tangled up in it. He was very angry with his blanket. Hopefully tomorrow will be a happy nap day.
This is Jameson pretending to sleep while he cuddles with an overjoyed Lexi.


An update to my sewing post. I did manage to fix my issue. Having some alone time this afternoon I was able to focus on the machine and re-thread it all. It worked and I made Jameson's pants. My new issue is that I hate crotches. I cannot go up one leg and down the other without screwing it up. I sewed the pants. Yippeee! I am sure Jameson is very happy he doesn't live in an era where his mom has to sew his clothes. It is a very easy pattern and now that I know what I am doing it will happen quicker in the future. He has a really long inseam though and even Kevin's "tall" shirts are barely tall enough if I use the side seam.



Sunday, November 8, 2009

No Sew, no go

I found a great easy pattern of play pants for Jameson made out of Kevin's old t-shirts. I cut out the pattern. I pinned the pattern. And I cannot for the life of me get the dang thread through the machine for me to begin sewing. OK, that is not entirely true. I got the thread THROUGH the machine, but something is obviously not right because every time I test it on my sample piece of fabric it gets all tangled, then the thread coming from the bobbin won't move. I have to take the whole thing apart and begin again. Ugh! I am too new to sewing to even have any clue as to where to start to fix this issue (and I am sure it is a simple one). Alison tried to help via text message, but it may as well be in a foreign language. I know that as soon as I can figure out the problem it will take 2.5 minutes to sew the pants. It is times like these when I need my crafty friends living close by, you know who you are! Let me just say that one of my oldest friends, Jenn got me through 7th grade Home Ec. when we were sewing wind sox, my schwiegerschwester (aka sis-in-law) Erika rocks the sewing machine, as does my Mom-in-law. Where are you girls?

I wish I were innately crafty, I am not. While its something I aspire to be, it always seems to allude me. I love knitting...the knit stitch over and over. My efforts to learn other stitches so I can possibly make something more exciting than a scarf have failed greatly. I want to learn how to sew, but I am being foiled by the machine. How hard do you think these pants would be to sew by hand? Hee hee. The one scrapbook I have attempted looks so sad I can't bear to look at it. I cannot cut a straight line, and I always make those jaggy cuts on top of it. I can't even color well, granted I can stay in the lines but I push the crayon too hard and it just doesn't look pretty. My mom was the best "colorer." When I was growing up, I loved watching her color.
My first (and only) scarf

Until I feel ready to take on the sewing machine again, I will take comfort in the fact that I made a really good pot roast today. I can cook, following a recipe is much simpler than following the sewing pattern directions or even the sewing machine directions. Now I will go eat a bowl of ice cream and catch up on Gossip Girl to drown out my sewing sorrows.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Toys

My philosophy on toys is fairly simple: I am anti-battery. As a babysitter in the dawning of the "interactive" toys I watched as children's imaginations slowly slipped away because there was no need for it. Pushing a button to hear a song or sound requires no thought and, in my belief teaches nothing. I want my children to grow up thinking a box can be way more fun than the gift that came in it. That socks can be puppets, and mud can be pies. I want them to think of fun creative things to do with toilet paper rolls and paper bags. I want them to know how to entertain themselves. I want our home to be filled with musical instruments of all kinds. The toys that we do have I want to last from child to child and perhaps even my grandchildren. I think we are off to a good start. It helps that we are in Vienna 1/2 the year so our toy supply is limited, and it also helps that Jameson is only 20 months old and doesn't see toy commercials. I am sure this philosophy will get much more difficult to maintain once Jameson is older, in school and going to friend's houses.

This is our playroom/loft area. It is probably one of my favorite rooms in our house. When we first bought our house I had no idea what I would use it for, but I quickly fell in love with its warm cozy feel and I am up there way more than I ever expected.

A comfy chair is a must for all the reading we do and I was lucky enough to pick up a matching pair with an ottoman at a consignment store for $100 each and the ottoman came with it. They are really well-made and while I want to re-upholster them I don't mind the current fabric.

One of my favorite pieces in the room is our little Schoenhut piano. Jameson sits and plays it everyday. I found this piano when Jameson was just a little baby and couldn't wait until the day I could buy it. I love hearing the tinkly little sound when he is playing, it makes me all sorts of happy.
Eventually, I want it to be even more child-play friendly. I want an activity table that is always supplied with paper, pencils, and art supplies. I also want display bookshelves because I love books of all kinds! Another love is music. We love to listen to music while we play. Our favorites are: Elizabeth Mitchell, Lisa Loeb and Frances England, all of which you can buy on iTunes.

I love looking through websites that have my same philosophy on toys. One website I really enjoy is called "The Magic Cabin" and it has some really fun looking toys. Another helpful website for cool toys is Mothering Magazine. There is a resource page with a ton of websites. I love having a kid because I get to look at all the exciting toys again!!

P.S. I am attempting NaBloPoMo which stands for National Blog Posting Month. All that means is I am going to write a blog a day for the month of November. I am hoping that leaving for Vienna doesn't interfere with this. That is the reason not all of these posts are related to Jameson like they normally are for all our family and friends that are far away. I will try and get pictures of the boy posted on a fairly regular basis though!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Motherhood Fulfilled

I have to be honest the transition to motherhood was a very easy one for me, there was no longing for what I was "missing," no wishing I had done this or done that, and I fully expected our life to change, for the better, but definitely different. For as long as I can remember I wanted to be a mom. My oldest friend, Kelly and I even have pictures from when we were about 2 1/2 years old with pretend pregnant bellies. I have always loved babies and children and I love learning about every phase and stage. To me, many things regarding children were simply innate. As soon as I was old enough I attended the Red Cross baby-sitting course and began babysitting for the ladies who lived behind us.

When I was 12 I started babysitting regularly for a family who would become like a 2nd family to me. At the time their eldest was 2 1/2 and their youngest was 8 months old. Two children were added to the fam and this is where I gained my newborn experience. The oldest is now a freshman in college!! I feel so lucky that Janelle had so much faith in my abilities and wonder if I could give a young girl that same chance she gave me to hone my mothering technique.

A great fear of mine was always that I wouldn't get the chance to be a mom, that fear was put to rest officially in July of 2007. I was well into the throws of morning sickness, I had seen the little tadpole on the screen and requested a blood test to measure my hormone levels. (Apparently they were excellent, hence the morning sickness). It didn't become real to me until September when I officially knew it was a little boy, Jameson would be his name. While I had that gut feeling "it" would be a boy I always imagined I would have a girl first, like in my own family. Also, Kevin's side of the family was having a generation of girls, so we assumed it would be a "she." I was in Vienna, Kevin was in the states. When my doctor turned on the screen she made an "ah-ha" sound and I asked: "Is it a boy?"

She told me to slow down she wasn't even close to that part of the ultrasound yet. A few minutes later she would reveal that she was ONE THOUSAND percent certain I was having a boy. Later on in my other ultrasounds they were never able to tell me because of his position.

He was due February 19th and that date came and went as many of you know. We did everything to bring on labor. What eventually worked for me was a couple rounds of accupuncture. After a very long labor beginning Saturday evening, March 1st and finally ending on Monday morning March 3 I finally got to meet my "dream come true." I was officially a mom, and it felt so surreal, like even though I had just gone through this very long labor I was just babysitting. I certainly didn't feel utterly changed. I knew I would die for this little baby, but I didn't really know him yet, I knew I loved him, but I wasn't IN love with him. Considering how long my labor was, I was very surprised he didn't look a lot more beat up. I was fully expecting a flat head and bruises. He had a shock of black hair and an orangey-red squished up face, but from the minute he was born he was VERY alert, all my midwives commented on that fact. He nursed fabulously and has never stopped. He rarely cried and still never does. People spend a week with us and never hear him cry. He was always the happiest of babies. Of all the babies I have babysat he was by far the easiest baby I had ever met. He made my transition very easy. He slept well, nursed well, rarely made a fuss and I fell in love. He grew into an active little guy and my job got a bit more exhausting, but he is so fun its worth the exhaustion!

Kevin and I have sacrificed a bit of our old selves but we both agree that we were ready for it, we wouldn't change it for the world. We certainly don't know what we would do without Jameson in our lives. Each phase Jameson is in is my newest favorite, because I don't realize it gets better and better. As his personality emerges I fall more in love with my son and feel more and more lucky that he is mine. I cannot wait until he is chattering up a storm and I really get to know what is going on in his head.