Sunday, December 30, 2012

Christmas 2012

Luckily for us all the world did not end last week as the Mayans predicted and we were able to celebrate Christmas and the birth of our Savior this week.

Our Christmas was fairly simple, but special. On Christmas Eve all my family, minus Emily's family who was sorely missed, got together for dinner, to exchange cousin and sibling gifts and to reenact the story of Christ's birth. The entire night was wonderful with a strong spirit of love and family, but the acting out of the true Christmas story brought a strong spirit into our home that will not soon be forgotten.

Christmas morning Merrick woke up early, but Jeremy and I kept him upstairs until about 8am. It was just Merrick, Jeremy, my parents, and I so we mostly just let Merrick open all his presents first. He was a very spoiled little boy, but the big highlights for him were all the new cars from the "Cars" movie and a present that was too big to fit under the tree. Santa had left a note saying that he left one present up in daddy's study room because it was too big for under the tree so once all the other presents were open we all took a trip upstairs to find Merrick's new big boy bed. On a side note, I am the world's luckiest parent because although he has been capable for years, Merrick only started trying to climb out of his crib over the past few months. We decided that since we had really maxed out the crib, it was time to upgrade.

After breakfast we were also able to talk to Jeremy's brother Garret on his mission in Washington. Through the use of ipads and iphones Jeremy's parents, Jensen, Bryce, Garret, and us were all able to talk to and see each other at the same time despite being in four different states. It was truly a great experience.

The rest of the day we spent rearranging furniture, exploring our new gifts, spending time together, and resting (because I got pretty sick that afternoon). It was not an over the top Christmas by any means, but it was memorable and most importantly had a strong emphasis on our Savior and his miraculous birth.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

First Snow

For me the highlight of this week was the season's first snow. On Monday evening a few snow flakes started to fall, but were melting immediately. I assumed that it would not be much different over night, but happily mother nature had other plans.

In the morning we woke up to a blanket of white. While it did not last long, it stuck around long enough for us to go out and play for a few minutes. We made tracks in the snow and had a quick snow ball fight. Probably my favorite part was when Jeremy tried to knock the snow off the newspaper and ended up creating a blob on the garage door that he turned into "Wilson".

As quickly as it came, the snow was gone and Merrick was sad that there was not quite enough to make a snowman, but the season is still young. Technically winter just began on Friday so there is still plenty of time to enjoy a bit of the white stuff.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

It's A Girl

Friday was an important day for our family. I had my anatomy ultrasound for the baby. For me this is always such an exciting and scary time. I anxiously look forward to finding out whether the baby is a boy or a girl, but finding out the baby's gender is such a small part of the what happens at that visit. With Merrick I remember them checking all his major body parts, his heart, brain, spine, stomach, etc, but I don't remember it being nearly this in depth.

The ultrasound took a full hour. Right away baby showed us very clearly that she was a little girl. Jeremy and I had both felt that she was a girl and we both (along with several other family members and friends)had dreams about a little girl joining our family so it was very exciting to see it confirmed on the ultrasound screen. This was just the beginning of the appointment, however.

Over the next 50 minutes or so the ultrasound technician checked and measured every body part imaginable. She checked the baby's heart, lungs, brain, spine,stomach, kidneys, bladder (both full and empty), umbilical cord connection, arms, legs, fingers and toes (including counting all 10) and used heat sensing technology to watch the blood vessels around each organ. For the most part our sweet baby girl was very cooperative with all the poking and prodding, but towards the end she fell asleep and did not want to show her head and brain very clearly. The tech was very patient though and with a lot of prodding, tipping me upside down on the table a few times, and walking around, she finally moved and let us finish up.

My doctors appointment afterwards was fairly uneventful and mainly just a confirmation that everything looked normal and healthy with the baby.

After that came the fun part, spreading the word. We called Jeremy's parents and my sister in Arizona right away, but made all the local people wait until Saturday morning when we could all get together for a fun reveal.

We decided to reveal the baby's gender with a piñata full of pink candy and confetti. The kids all had a great time taking turns swinging for the fences and once everyone had a turn we let Merrick finish it off. A few pieces snuck out and all the the adults rushed up to see what color they were so Jeremy helped finish the piñata off. I thought it was the perfect reveal. All the kids were so excited to get the candy and the adults were all excited to find out it was a girl.

We have a few more months to wait before this little girly joins our family, but she is already so loved. We are anxiously awaiting her arrival.

Her profile and thumb and the reveal

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Here Comes Santa Claus

This weekend Merrick and I had a fun adventure. We went to downtown West Linn for the city Christmas parade and to see Santa Claus. I was a little on the fence about going because Jeremy was busy studying for finals so I was going to have to go by myself and while I think parades are fun, parades in the rain are not. Luckily the weather was kind. When we got out of the car the sun was shining and while it was cold, it did not rain.

The center of the parade was the fire station so we started there with cookies and hot chocolate. The actual parade itself was not elaborate, but entertaining. There were horses, llamas, firetrucks, and of course Santa Claus. People on the various float threw out candy and all the kids loved that.

The highlight of the day for Merrick, however, came after the parade when Santa went into the fire station and the kids were able to go sit on his lap. This is the first year Merrick has actually wanted to sit on Santa's lap. When it was his turn, he hopped right up. I stepped back to take pictures so I did not hear the actual conversation, but Merrick tells me he told Santa he wants secret agents (from the Cars movie) and that Santa gave him an invitation to come to the North Pole and help make toys.

In any case I left our visit with Santa with a very happy boy. The icing on the cake was that as we walked back to the car we got to see horse poop on the sidewalk and apparently nothing is cooler to a three-year-old boy than a big pile of horse poop.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Be Careful What You Wish For

Yesterday afternoon I was thinking about what I would blog about today and realized I really did not have much to say. We had a pretty uneventful week and I thought "well maybe something eventful will happen today". All I can say is to be careful what you wish for.

The evening started out well. Jeremy, Merrick, and I went to dinner at Five Guys. We were just finishing our super yummy dinner when out of the corner of my eye I saw Merrick falling off his chair. I jumped up to catch him but was not able to get to him before his head hit the ground. I scooped him up immediately and tried to assess the damage. At first I just felt a bump and it did not seem too bad so I focused on cuddling him and getting him to stop crying. Once he was calm, I decided to investigate again and that is when I saw the blood.

He was bleeding pretty good from the side of his head. I grabbed a napkin and put pressure on it and the bleeding stopped fairly quickly. Jeremy and I sat there discussing what to do next, if we should just take him home or go to the ER. The poor Five Guys workers felt so bad, but really did not know what to do to help. The bleeding had stopped but we could see the gash and it looked pretty bad.

Thankfully Jeremy had the presence of mind to say "We have insurance. I would rather be safe than sorry. Lets's just take him to the ER". I on the other hand was still trying to call the after hours office at his pediatricians. The tipping point for me was when I told the person answering the phone that my son was bleeding from a gash in his head and I was trying to decide if we needed to go to the ER and she told me that a nurse would call me back, but if I had not heard anything in AN HOUR to call back! That was it for me.

The ER was blessedly quiet and we got right in. Merrick was so worried about getting a shot, but even in his worried, bleeding state he charmed everyone we talked to. We checked in at reception and were walking to triage and Merrick said "That didn't hurt a bit!" All the women at reception and the nurse cracked up.

The actual treatment itself was a bit more traumatic, but everyone commented how brave Merrick was. They cleaned the wound and then put on a numbing agent. Because of its position they could not get it to stay in place so we had to hold it on for thirty minutes while it took effect. What seemed like an eternity later they came in to close the wound. They cleaned it once again and then the nurse held Merrick's head while the doctor closed it with three staples. Merrick panicked and screamed a bit, but calmed right down when it was over. They gave him a sticker and sent us on our way.

Unfortunately the trauma is not quiet over because we have to have the staples taken out next week, but I am sure he will be just as brave as he was yesterday. While that was not how I envisioned spending our night, it could have been much worse. I am just grateful he will be just fine and we will be able to put this behind us soon.