Monday, January 26, 2015

Poppet 3

Last week we had our 24 week scan to check upon baby girl. I'd planned it for a holiday day so Raf could come. As it was, Raf was very sick, Nana was coming down with it, and Charlie was very much attached to the idea of not being without me. So instead of Rich and I heading to Portland for the scan, Raf stayed behind with Nana and Charlie came with us. Thankfully it was a quick scan! Charlie is quite disinterested in having a sister and I don't think he had a clue what was really going on, but he did very well (with the aid of Thomas Train clips on my phone).

Baby girl looks great. Every month I have ultrasounds to check on fetal well being (because of a lupus diagnosis), just as in my other pregnancies. She was moving around, doing her practice breathing, etc., within just a few minutes, so we were in and out. The very nice sonographer treated us to some 4D photos and video so we could show Raf. Always a little alien-like, but what a beauty! 

I'm now in my 26th week...getting close to the third trimester. It's going very, very fast. I just rejoined a nearby gym last week as it's much too slippery to run outside and my growing tummy is making rowing very tricky. I'm still able to run 5 or so miles with a few walk breaks, and on those days I feel much more energized. Without exercise I'm like a walking zombie all day. It should be an interesting final 10 weeks, especially since I am teaching right up until a week before my due date, which is right in the middle of exams. I wish we had more humane maternity policies in the States. It's utterly crazy that there is no paid time leave, and I'm feeling somewhat lucky that at least the baby will be born over the summer when I'm supposed to be doing research. We'll see how that goes.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

A Few Firsts...

Last weekend, Raf and I spent more time together than we have for a while - so we had a busy schedule with a birthday party and a roller-skating date! The birthday party was for an old pre-school friend that he hadn't seen for about six months - at a local go-karting track. He'd never done this before - and was quite excited! Though unfortunately it had been a very cold night previously and the kart batteries were struggling to keep power for any length of time! It was a lot of fun, and he got to see two old friends who we hope to see again soon...

Then the next day we met up with our good friends, at Happy Wheels in Portland! Raf hadn't roller-skated before - and I hadn't since - well a long time ago. So we were both surprised that it didn't take too long to get our balance/coordination going and venture out onto the big circuit. Now we were far from fast but we had a great time and no major falls of note - and we are looking forward to the next time already!

Sunday, January 18, 2015


As I was writing the last blog the boys started to play catch in the living room....

"Wanna play with me, Rafi?"
"Sure I do... you stand over there"
(Playing catch and kicking the ball)
"Nice kicking, Rafi"
"Thanks, Charlie"
"uh oh, you hit me" (with the ball)
"Uh oh, yes I did"
"Silly Rafi"
"Want to see this Charlie" (bouncing ball)
"Good bounce, raf" (Charlie attempts to bounce the ball"
"Nice job Charlie"

They fight a lot too...

And then they are the sweetest.

Last week I caught them using a phonics 'learn to read program' on the iPad, with rafi 'teaching' Charlie how to read!!

Poppet Three: 24 weeks. And Poorly Chas.

On Friday I hit 24 weeks. This pregnancy is going by very quickly, and before this weekend I'd not gotten one thing ready.  On Friday I bought her first piece of clothing! Two of our lovely neighbours have given us such sweet little gifts, including the most loveliest little flower hat, and our incredibly generous friend Sarah Hope, who we literally receive parcels from on a monthly basis, sent such sweet little onesies. I've completely forgotten how small newborns are...!

This weekend mum and I took a trip to Ikea to buy some furniture for her room - just a chest of drawers and some storage stuff. We'll have the (never used) crib in our bedroom and we'll keep the baby's room as also the spare room (aka Nana's room). The entire house is in disarray but I'm hoping that at some point soonish things will be better organized.

I am super, super tired and with two children and a full time job it can be a little bit exhausting. And the nausea is relentless. Tomorrow I have my 24 week scan and I'm hoping the boys are well enough to come. Raf is literally beside himself with excitement about his little sister. He is also adamant on her name, so we shall have to see.

Poor Charlie has been really, really poorly. He started throwing up on Tuesday night - out of the blue - and was up most of the night, just in time for the day before the start of classes. On Wednesdays I stay home for most of the day with Charlie as I teach a late evening class, so not ideal. He seemed to rally on Wednesday during the day, though as soon as I walked through the door at 9pm and got in to bed, he sat up and threw up all over me AGAIN! Poor chap was up literally all night... just in time for me to have to struggle to my morning Thursday class. The week definitely could have gone better. He seemed lots better on Friday but once again was poorly that evening (a horrible cold now) and has slept really poorly all week. I'm hoping that by tomorrow he feels better. He's very slight to begin with, and now his little joggers are even falling off him.

Charlie did start with his new nanny this week, though (at least the first couple of days) and he settled in very quickly. He was honestly so happy to see his pal Annie. And came back with some adorable artwork, which he was very proud of. Raf was, too, and took a photo of it so we could make sure we always have a copy!

Monday, January 12, 2015


Charlie's new nanny started today and it was such a relief! We were very, very sad to say goodbye to our lovely nanny Audrey, who had a wonderful job opportunity in CT and thanks to the family we do our nanny share with, we managed to find a super replacement. Caitlan was lead teacher at a nearby daycare center (a very good one) and came with outstanding references. We've been very, very fortunate to find her.. Today went brilliantly. I dropped him off at 'Annie's house', and whilst he asked for Audrey he was so happy to see Annie that he went with the flow. 

Here's a pic of Charlie's last day with Audrey... Raf was there too, and they both had such a lovely time with Annie and James. 

Charlie is such a character. He's always 'hangry', and inevitably wakes up before 5am stating the fact - even when he's demanded bananas in bed at 9pm... A term of endearment is 'stinky poop'. Indeed his first 6 word sentence to me was, "I love you, Mummy, Stinky Poops'. He also tells a lot of fibs.. "Daddy hit me, Mummy hit me, Audrey hit me, Rafi hit me", which he declares with a massive grin on his mischievous face. 

He's very discerning about what he eats out of and inevitably switches one bowl for another, often inappropriately so. For example, here he is eating (slurping) cereal from a sandwich box, and this morning he ate his bagel out of a massive popcorn container.

He's chatting up a storm. Every day I'm amazed by all the things he says. He's such a feisty little thing; a little scrapper. 

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Five and a half!

Raf turned 5 1/2 today! Such a big, lovely boy. As we drove home from school today, and as he was telling me about his day, he explained, 'mummy, I just couldn't stop thinking about my sister today. I'm so excited'! He really is. Today he was looking at pictures of baby girls in the Next magazine, looking at the 'cute babies', trying to pick out a present for her. Chas is less excited about the prospect!

Last week Raf had his 6 month check-up at the dentist. Charlie came with us for the first time, and as Raf was reclined in the chair, shouted out, 'be careful Rafi!' Raf was a trooper. He has great teeth (unlike his English parents), with not even any tartar buildup. Hoping his brother will follow in his footsteps (not ours!), though the fact we have to basically hold him down for teeth brushing doesn't bode well.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Hello 2015!

This blog is six years old! I can't believe that we've managed to keep up with it all these years. The boys, even Charlie, love to look back at old posts and pictures so we're so glad that we've kept this little diary, especially as I am rubbish when it comes to printing out pictures and keeping up baby books. So we head in to 2015 with another new addition on the horizon... and whilst our New Years celebrations were low-key, I have to say that 2014 was a pretty good year for us. 

- Rich finished his masters and started a new job.
- Raf began kindergarten.
- I took a step back from administration at work, which has been a major change and a lovely one!
- Charlie's language blossomed.
- Raf also learned to swim.
- Charlie began with a nanny-share and secured a new BFF!
- We took a fantastic trip to Spain and England and were so lucky to be able to see family and old friends.
- And a marvelous visit with Nana - who is still here. 

We said goodbye to 2014 in a rather tame way... Sadly Rich had to work late, though Raf and I had a really, really fun time at the Children's Museum celebrating the 12noon pajama party and balloon drop. We got to go with Raf's new kindergarten buddy, Gideon, and is lovely, lovely mum. They had an absolute blast...

Waiting for the balloons and doing a bit of bopping... Both boys were worried about missing out on the balloons so the dancing was somewhat tempered by anticipatory anxiety!

Sadly I missed the pics of the balloons as Raf was in a tizzy about ensuring he got a balloon.

When we returned home we enjoyed some yummy New Years soup and a few toasts!

Then we practiced Auld Lang Syne...

And then we put on BBC radio at 6:45 and listened out for the bells of Big Ben!

Hurrah! Hello 2015!

The next day was also low-key... a lovely Tofurky roast (any excuse).

More wine, more toasts...

And then Nana surprised the boys with a bag of treats! It was left over from Christmas and I'm so glad we waited as the boys were so happy and excited to receive some New Year treats.

Colouring pads!

Banana chips!

What? Iroman?!

Protein bars!

Enjoying their spoils...

And the gift for us? Watching the boys whilst we headed out for a New Years run.

it was cold... and Rich was practicing his Usain Bolt pose..

Mine wasn't as good...

A lovely start to the year... I think it's going to be a good one, albeit a crazy one!