Thursday, July 29, 2010

Oh, couple things I need to mention (sorry no pictures)

WOW! I've been doing a lot posting lately. Not a bad thing. Anyway, I just realized that there were a couple things I wanted to mention via bliggidy blog but haven't so here they are:

1-Andrew made the successful transition to big boy bed a little over a month ago! HURRAY! It wasn't difficult actually, he did real good job and LOVES it. Right now the crib acts as his punishment as well (which helps). If he gives me a hard time getting out of bed at night, all I have to say is, "Andrew, do you need to sleep in the baby crib tonight?" (Imagine being said with stern mommy eyes and voice riddled with unsympathetic mommy tones). That's all he needs (on a good day) and he will immediately jump back in bed and say, "NO, my big bed!" That's right, that's right, I give kisses, close the door and bedtime is done! Good thing he doesn't know how to open the door yet....

But well done Andrew!

2-Remember how I've mentioned before that here in jolly ol' Aberdeen they do NOT tell you the gender of your unborn child even if you want to know. They have a strict no-tell policy due to being sued, etc, etc in the past. Whu-ell...I have some little news. So my midwife (everyone gets midwives here...which I actually really like) thought that bump was measuring a wee bit small, her words, " certainly have a wee bump," and so she sent me to the hospital to see a doctor to have another scan (ultrasound) just to be sure everything is growing well in there.

Off I go to the hospital, sit and wait until I get called back to see a lovely Hungarian doctor named Helga (seriously). Helga and I hit it off and she is super friendly. She laughs at my awkward jokes and pokes at my "wee" belly. She makes a couple jokes of her own and even sides with me in my belief that bump (BTY: bump= baby)is actually not that "wee". Turns out bump is measuring a little on the larger end of average BUT my belly just doesn't expand like most pending mothers. Instead, as Helga points out, I just seem to carry my feti more inside than out. What does this mean?!?! Well, I have a smaller looking bump BUT the child has actually made a nice home being abnormally squished between my kidney and lungs. ("Abnormally squished" means extra pressure on the kidneys, less lung expansion and little feet perma under ribs, to name a few.)Helga jokes and says, "You must get people telling you your bump is little...but it really can't be comfortable can it?" No, Helgs, (can I call you Helgs?) No it is not! I would much rather have larger belly and more, gasp, lung space, gasp...thank you!

Anyway, off I go on a tangent. So the point of this story is that after we determine that wee bump is doing great Helgs gets ready to turn of the ultrasound machine but then gets a sly smirk on her face. She look at me and asks if I know the gender. I take full advantage and reply that I don't but would sure like to. (Bat my eyes, smile nicely with a look that says, remember all our joking? He could be great friends Helgs, real great friends!)She picks up on it and says "Well, you know it's our policy not to tell. BUT..." (yes, she said but)"...I can say with much certainty that you are NOT having a boy!" She then showed me (quite vividly)why she felt so certain. Trust me, I could tell too! I thanked Helga profusely and as soon as I walked out of her office there sat Mike to whom I immediately bombarded with, "Your going to have a daughter!"

Poor fellow, wasn't expecting that but admits to being elated! We both secretly wanted a female!

So we are currently seeing PINK in our household and can't wait to meet her!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Andrew post

I think I've been a bit of a downer on the blog lately, just venting about Andrew's tantrums and my hormonal mess of a self. Truly though, life is not that bad, it's great actually and Andrew is probably the best little boy I could have ever asked for. It's funny, Mike and I were talking and we decided the reason this whole tantrum phase has thrown us for a loop is simply because he has been so ideal up until now. As a baby he was always so pleasant, honestly never cried unless he was hungry or poopy and so I got really used to having such an easy going child. But, hey, he is two and although the bad things do happen, they seem worse because of my pregnancy self and amidst the notty things, he sure does a lot of amazingly cute, wonderful things too. And he is smart, I swear the kid says something new everyday! Some of my recent favorites are:

"Mommy, swimming in watah today?!" (This is something he asks almost every hour. We have taken him swimming a couple times and it certainly seems to be his favorite activity at the moment.)

"Baby in dere. Kisses for baby." (All said while pointing to, and then kissing,bump)

His vocab is really coming along and he can communicate most things now...sometimes it takes me awhile to figure out what he means, but he's found ways of expressing it!

He loves being outdoors and breaks for the front door any chance he can get. He also loves to play "football" with Mike (although, much to Mike's annoyance Andrew calls is 'soccer' due to my influence, LOL)He hates showers and vegetables, but loves tickling, counting games, matching games and puzzles. He also loves to help me cook meals and constantly asks to brush his teeth.

The following are some pictures of the fun things we have been up to, specifically for Andrew, over the last few months.

Storybook Glen
There is this lovely children's place nestled in some of the hills about 5 min from our house. It's HUGE! And it's basically a park filled with statues of different storybook characters where the kids can go climb and play on them. There are a few little castles within the grounds, a farm, a couple parks and countless storybook characters! We have been three times and we still haven't seen all they have to offer! It's been a lot of fun. The following are some of our adventures.


Mike's feelings about Barney

This is the old lady who lived in a shoe. Sometimes I can relate to how she feels.

There was a little place in the Glen that was sectioned off as the Troll Kingdom. So fun, you walk through a bridge and the next 1/2 mile is nothing but little troll houses and troll villages. Andrew loved it.

Troll bridge

Andrew made a friend

Stopped to have a nice conversation with the locals. Andrew helped to cook.

Me and the bubble belly troll on the look out.

Leaving the kingdom. We all agree that it's a little bitter-sweet to leave.

This is a proper highland "coo" (cow).

Andrew chasing chickens

Andrew LOVES trucks and tractors

Cinderella's castle

There is a beautiful river trail that Andrew and I like to walk through at least once a week. Sometimes we stop to play in the water.

Sitting on a rock to eat lunch

Som fun around the house:

Andrew is a robot

Andrew eating chocolate--This was from Easter. I know it's a long time ago but I forgot to post these pics. It was hilarious. We let him find some Easter eggs around the house (it was rainy outside)and he had sooo much fun doing it...almost as much fun as eating the chocolate.

Andrew in a little Easter Hat when we went to visit is great-grandma English.

Love this boy!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

two-year old tantrums....didn't know they were REALLY this hard.

It is an hour and a half past Andrew's bedtime. He is currently in manic rage of a tantrum screaming, kicking the door and weeping, whaling and gashing his little teeth. It's been like this most of the week. Here is the typical scenario:

7:15-8:00--Shower time, getting ready for bed in the normal routine (brush teeth, put on pj's read a story and sing a song)All seems well. I kiss him goodnight, tuck him in and then leave the room.

--Andrew decides he wants another story or one more song or for mommy to lie down next to him, or for some juice or for some water, or a hug, etc, etc.

8:20--Sensing his whining becoming more frantic, I come back in and calmly tell him no, it's time for bed. Blow him kisses and then say goodnight.

Trust me, I am his mother, I know he understands I mean it.

8:21--Doesn't like that it's time for bed so the throw down begins.

8:22-Way past bedtime and way past mommy's patience--Still screaming, still kicking the door, still out of's been going on for ages. I still ignore him. Trust me, this tantrum phase has been going on multiple times a day for a few months now and I've learned that the best thing for this kid with his STUBBORN personality (gee...where did he get that from--MOM & DAD) is to ignore him. It will pass, sometimes it takes hours, yes HOURS but it will pass.

So...we wait.

It's now 9:45 he has finally stopped crying. I go in to check on him and see that he fell asleep on the floor amongst a wreckage of Dr. Seuss, stuffed animals, clothes and bits of broken chalk. It looks like his room was hit by Hurricane Andrew. It was.

I just cleaned organized his room perfectly, yesterday. Oh well...

I carefully pick him up and put him back in bed.

Ahhhh....peace and quiet...finally. I go in to talk to my MR. up until this moment our evening has been spent in agitation with ears plugged. Think that it might be nice to get some uninterrupted adult conversation going....but it's late now and Mike and I are tired. So tired!


It's 10 pm and Mike has to leave for University by 6am. This means it's now our bedtime. We brush our teeth, take necessary showers then hop in bed and turn off the lights.


6am--I make Mike lunch and he heads off for Uni.I go back to bed to read some scriptures and maybe get an extra snore in.

6:15-630am--I wake up to hear knocking on the door. Andrew is up and happy and ready for the day. Mommy is not as happy but feels better and gets up to really begin the day.

Most of the day goes great. Andrew really IS a cute kid and I really DO love being his mom. BUT...there was the 1/2 hour tantrum when I told him it was time to turn off the cartoons and the hour tantrum when I took away his toy car after he threw it against the TV (after I had warned him not to). There was the mini-tantrum when I took him to the shop and he didn't want my help to open the door and the major tantrum at nap time when he would not willingly let me change his poopy nappy (diaper). Then we are back to bedtime. You get the idea.

I calculate that out of the 11 hours he is awake in a 24 hour time period, he has spent close to four of those hours in a rage. Hmmph...not so cool.

Some days are better than this, some days are worse. But this scenario has been pretty typical lately. I don't know what I'm doing, I don't have answers...I don't know what else to try and I really don't like him when he is like this. I genuinely DON'T, like super annoyed and sick of the kid. Makes me feel like a horrible mother. BUT...I do know that I'm not horrible, I do know that it's just part of parenthood and that every kid has something...right now my kids thing is tantrums, I do know it will pass and I do know that my attitude plays a huge part in having success.

So...I am trying to suck it up. I mean really trying to suck it up and have a good attitude. It's hard, daaang hard sometimes, I just want to wallow and mourn the loss of my sweet little pre-tantrum boy and my freedom. Sometimes I do, but I don't let it last long. I keep reminding myself that this is parenthood. I wanted this, I mean REALLY wanted this and I was lucky enough to get it. I laugh when I think about how I used to view motherhood as this beautiful mormon-ad with predictable ups and downs. But then I'm humbled to remember that the sweet moments are so much more meaningful than a fluffy portrayal of someone else's ideal and that they are so much more frequent. Although it may not always seem that way.

Ahhh...they should list parenthood as the new extreme sport. It sure feels that way sometimes with all the emotion, the adrenaline, the intensity...

But I am grateful for it. You know...I really am.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Last Few weeks

Alright, so we have had some fun times over the last few weeks. When I say fun times I mean FUN times and "fun" times. Here are the "fun" times.

Our fridge broke
This happened about a week after our washer broke. However, unlike the washer Mike was unable to fix the fridge. We tried everything but it soon became apparent that it had bit the dust. Thankfully we have the most fantastic landlords ever and they quickly ordered a new one and we got it a little less than a week later. Perhaps that sounds like a long time? Not for Scotland. It was actually pretty quick, and although living off of canned veg and tuna got old, we were back to business in no time. (Oh..and thank heaven--literally--for food non-perishable food storage)

The other "fun" thing was that our car broke. Sigh...just a few days ago actually. We had been driving it normally all day, then we parked it for about 15 minutes, went out to use it again and then the key suddenly wouldn't turn in the ignition. I called like 15 different people to see if they could came take a look (Mike and I tried EVERYTHING you can possible imagine to get it working)and most people said we would have to pay to have it towed to the dealer where they could fix it. Um....that option is like crazy expensive (almost more than the car is worth) so I continued calling and finally found a lovely local mechanic with experience in this problem who came to our flat for free to see what he could do. I love this man! Anyway, turns out he fixed it for a fraction of the cost and we are back in business! So, although it was annoying, it could have been a lot worse!

On to the FUN things!

Mike's parents were so nice and offered to take us on a little weekend getaway to Edinburgh. We spent about three days there and really enjoyed the experience. We went to the Zoo, walked around Edinburgh castle, saw many of the historical sights (Scottish parliament, etc), went to church (which was a HUGE ward) and visited Rosslyn chapel. Any of you read the DaVinci Code? Well, Dan Brown writes about that chapel in his book. The actual Rosslyn chapel is not the one filmed for the movie. It is so much better! Honestly, by now I have seen countless cathedrals, churches, castles and this one is probably my number one. It is the most intriguing and beautiful and inspiring building I have been to yet. It took over forty years to make and although it is quite small, it's architecture and design is probably some of the most impressive I will ever see. Nearly every inch of that thing has some design, story or meaning. And a lot of it is VERY intriguing. For example, there are carvings of corn maze and aloe vera which at that point in time were only found in the America's. Thing is...this chapel was completed 50 years BEFORE Columbus sailed the ocean blue so it begs the question if he REALLY was the first to discover America. In addition to this, the tour guide explained that one of the native tribes in the Canadian area have accounts in their history of white sailors getting lost and landing on their shore. These white visitors lived with them for a while until they fixed their ship and went home. It's hypothesized that these men were some of the Masons who worked on the chapel or even members of the St. Claire family (who commissioned the building of the it). Oh! And speaking of masons this chapel is clearly tied to free-masonry there being many signs and symbols subtly carved which indicate their involvement. Very, very cool things...

Anyway, I really could go on and on and on about the Rosslyn chapel but suffice it for me to say that it was very fantastic and I am so glad we got to see it (and REALLY thankful Grandma and Grandpa West watched Andrew so Mike and I could go in without worrying about him touching things. THANK YOU!) are some photos of the events.

Driving to Edinburgh over a cool bridge.

Some fun ZOO pics
Oh Andrew...he sort of had meltdown or two while at the zoo so unfortunately we didn't get many great photos. However here we at least managed to get one with him eyeing the Zebra. He loved the Zebras and the penguins the most.

Downtown Edinburgh

There was sooo much to see! We tried to get as much in as possible and we got to see a lot. (Unfortunately we didn't get to see a really cool underground city. Yes, that's right apparently during the Black plague times, in an effort to try and control it and save some money, they city built new buildings on top of old ones. The people who lived in these homes didn't really have a say. Anyway this essentially created a whole underground city and we were super bummed we didn't get a chance to see it. Next time!)

These photos are of the Scottish Parliament building. Honestly the whole building was a bit weird! It's new and was designed to look very modern and artsy. I guess I can appreciate it for what it is but is just seems sooo out of place amongst such old, historical buildings!

I guess this could be considered something like the Buckingham Palace of Scotland.

These are just some old city "cottages". The picture doesn't do it justice, looked so rustic and authentic in person!

Outside some lovely gold embossed doors. I think this was at the Queens theater (?)

Outside Edinburgh castle. It was HUGE!!!

So...Andrew loves Dr.Who. It's the weirdest thing, he's only seen it twice but he goes around the house all day pretending to be Dr. Who. For those of you who don't know what I'm referring to...look it up online. It's this fantastically cheesy British Sci-fi show that has been going on for YEARS and YEARS! The main character (Dr. Who) travels through time in a spaceship that looks like a police box. Well, we saw this police box downtown and Andrew starts saying, "Dr. WHO!!!, Dr. WHO!!" So, of course we stopped to do our best Dr. Who impression.

These next photos are of the Rosslyn Chapel. We actually weren't allowed to take photos once inside so I found these off the internet.

These are some of the grounds surrounding Rosslyn. Green and beautiful like most places in Scotland!

Last but not least...
I have had a couple people bug me about putting up a legit pregnancy pic. So...I finally decided to give in and appease these certain complainers. BUT keep in mind, it's my blog so I chose a picture that doesn't make me look like the gargantuan wildabeast that I am. I guess here is my 7 month picture.