Before. Channelling the Beatles, Chelsea would say.
During. Channelling Don Draper, in the only way that I will ever let him be anything like Don Draper.
(Sorry, currently in the middle of Mad Men on Netflix.)
After. Channelling a 5 year old, or even a 7 year old.
Let me know if you know where I can pick up a Beatles wig.
On Tuesday morning we found out that our visas has been approved and would be in our possession on Wednesday.
I was at a friend's house when Chris told me the news. She said, "Well, what now?" I said, "Well, now we go to London."
The visa approval is what we were waiting on before we did any of the "moving forward with this thing" things.
So, on Thursday, we made a final offer to the landlord of an amazing flat that we'd had our eye on that week, and it was accepted on Friday.
We realized that we would be able to fly out soon enough to get Jayce into preschool this fall, something we really wanted for him, so we needed to get tickets and get over there asap.
We decided a bit ago that we would send Chris a week early so that he could check out and set up the flat. That way if there are any big problems, and there might be, since we've never set foot in it to see for ourselves, then we can get those taken care of or find alternate arrangements without the kids in tow. Chelsea is flying over with the kids and I to assist on the plane and in the airports, and is going to stay for a few days to hang out and help us set up shop. She and I are also going to venture out to Ikea together before she leaves, a place that Chris and I cannot go to together, for the sake of our marriage and friendship.
So Friday night Chris bought his tickets, and on Saturday morning he bought the tickets for the kids, Chelsea and I.
Next weekend we head to Ohio, Chris flies out Wednesday, the kids and I the next week. We'll be living in our new flat by the end of the month.
Like I said, warp speed.
The last full week in July was our last week in Lincoln.
Our last month was, overall, a good one. Peppered with some setbacks, like having our passports lost and the visa applications stunted while we applied for brand new passports. But it was also full of company, help, friends and family.
It was a month full of "lasts." Last guys nights and girls nights, last play dates with various friends of both Jayce and Hannah. (Unfortunately in my spaced-out state, I neglected to be as camera wielding as I typically am.)
We had our last church visit. Our last week with those Sunday afternoon traditions: nap, backyard sprinklers and swings, sidewalk chalk in this driveway, walks around the block, dinner at our favorite local restaurant and out for ice cream.
Our last nights watching movies on our couch (which is sold), on our tv (sold), in our living room (sold).
It was the last days rocking my baby girl in the rocker in her nursery. Her last nights in a room that I put a lot of thought into, last nights in a crib that allowed both her and her brother to sleep safely and soundly, and will now be used by their new cousin.
Jayce's last night in his big boy room, complete with big boy bed. His bed is now a big girl bed for his cousin Hadley.
Lots of lasts. Now I'm ready for some firsts.
I imagine that I should first be posting about our move, or our last weeks in Lincoln, or some sort of processing/grieving/or excitement over what is to come sort of post right now, right?
Right. Right? I don't know.
Instead I'll just say that there are 3 different posts that fall somewhere into those categories and none are ready. I keep trying to trim them down or finish them, but it's the sort of thing that can't or shouldn't be trimmed, and I'm having a heck of a time finishing. How do you wrap up your thoughts about a stage of your life that has just ended? How can I have perspective or closure while it is still so fresh, and really doesn't seem to be a reality just yet?
And it's not really my style to write about things that have happened recently, right? I'm running about a month behind here.
Anyway, I'll answer briefly, as promised, to the title to this post.
We have moved out of our house.
We are waiting for our visas, which should arrive sometime in the next few weeks.
In the meantime, Chris' parents have graciously allowed us to stay with them, and for the kids' stuff to take over their house. :) Okay, we're doing our best to not let the second part be fully true.
We are slowing down. After a WHIRLWIND of a last 2 months, which I will not be recapping, but you could read about here, time has slowed down.
We are visiting with family. We are hanging out and laying low. We are playing and sleeping. A lot.
We are visiting with old friends.
We are taking pictures with our phone.
If it is any indication of how worn out I have been, my camera is still in the bag from when we moved here 9 days ago. This should be an indication of something, since I typically use it every single day. I'll get it out again this week though, because though I love my phone, it's still only houses a camera phone.
A few weeks ago I was looking at a blog entry that I did when Jayce was around Hannah's age where I was detailing some new trick that he was doing at the time, and I found myself wishing that I had given more information about the other things that he was doing at that age. So I thought I'd do something like that for both kids. Jayce's is here.
Hannah, your update will seem a bit less out of date since I had been doing your monthlys up until 1 year.
But, on a typical day,
Your sleep has 2 normals. Some weeks you wake once per night, some weeks (particularly when teething) you wake three times. Most weeks you take two, 2-hour naps, sometimes you only take one 2-3 hour nap. When you get up, I nurse you for a few minutes, then you are back to sleep. We have tried to let you cry it out on a dozen occasions now, but once you start teething or get sick, it's all out the window, and we start all over again.
You wake up between 6 and 7:30. If you get up at 6:30 I can put you down for a nap at 8:30. But if you get up at 5, I will nurse you and put you back down (though I should probably just stay up with you at that point), then you will sleep until 7:30 or 8. Those days you have no morning nap.
You wake up, Chris brings you to me to feed you/snuggle in bed, but pretty quickly you demand for your dad to pick you up. You cruise the kitchen with him while he fixes breakfast and coffee for everyone, and if he tries to set you down, you will crawl right after him, following him around the house, getting up on your knees when you are next to him so that he will pick you up. After you help dad eat his breakfast, you will have some of your own cereal or oatmeal in your high chair, then get down to play.
A week with Grandma and Chelsea and you doubled your tricks and words. Now your favorite, all the time-rs are, Wooow, Whooooa (said quietly, in an almost whisper), Ooo-ooo!, baby, dada, mom-ma, mo-maw (Grandma), Ja! (Jayce), Uh-oh, nah nuh (Hannah, also sometimes you say this for night night), puppy (puppy), bay-a! (bear or paci), eye, hiiiii (very enthusiastically).
You were obsessed with growling like a bear, but now you are obsessed with panting like a dog. You do this whenever you pick up a little book with an animal, any animal, but especially dogs.
You LOVE books right now, and love to flip through them with an inquisitive look on your face. Sometimes when you are fighting me at naptime (though this is rare) I put you down with a book, and you flip through it until you fall asleep.
Your favorite books are two little books, one full of golden retrievers, one full of kittens, both with petable fur on each page. You'll do different animal noises for the different animals, only at our prompting, but first you pant at each new animal on a page.
You love to put things in containers and take things out. You are always in my purse, the diaper bag, unloading the diaper basket, unloading piles of clean clothes from the hamper, unloading toys from buckets and boxes, taking tissues out of the tissue box or wipes from the wipes container.
You nap easily. I nurse you and we rock for a minute, then I put you down wide awake, on your side facing away from the door with your paci and elephant "bear." The bear is your favorite thing. You love to bite it's nose and the tip of the blanket that it's holding, particularly when you are teething. I have to take it away at least once a week to scrub at the "bitable" parts and wash it to keep it from smelling and being gross, but you LOVE it. When you see it from across the room, you will happily declare "bea-a!!" and speed crawl over to it, grab it, and fling your head into it. You also often pick it up with both hands, put it up to your shoulder and snuggle it tightly between your cheek and shoulder. God forbid we ever lose it. I've bought you a spare, a few months ago, but you won't have anything to do with it.
You have a fair appetite, so long as it is all adult food. You don't even want applesauce or anything that seems like baby food. But pieces of strawberries, grapes, watermelon, carrot sticks (full sized, you just kind of scrape off little shreds with your teeth), apple slices (same as the carrots), raisins, crackers of any kind, yogurt, cereal, bread of any kind, meat of any kind, pasta, cheese, and you love lunch meat.
You still don't want milk or juice, just water and mom's milk.
I still nurse you a few times a day, much to my surprise, we've just kind of stuck with it. First thing in the morning, before each nap, before bed and in the middle of the night. I don't think that you are getting much milk anymore, but it is more of a habit, and it winds you down nicely. Actually, I am going to hold tight to this tradition until we are in London, because it is going to be at the top of my bag of tricks to get you to sleep on the plane and to help you get over jet lag and adjust to the new time.
You crawl fast and walk fast, so long as you are holding our hands. You'll stand for several seconds here and there and you cruise a lot. Actually, you love to climb things. You were always on top of our suitcases as we were packing, on top of any toy that would hold you, on Jayce's little desk and on your little rocker. I'm hoping there isn't a nasty fall in your future, but for now I am always close enough to break your falls when they occur.
Your bedtime routine is shorter than your brother's. After dinner, I take you up for a bath, put you in your pjs, bring you downstairs to tell dad and Jayce goodnight, then head back up to your room to nurse for a few minutes and then put you down. You go to bed awake and fall asleep quickly most nights, and are in bed by 7. You go to bed so easily and I really appreciate it.
You're a peach. Even when you've been smiling and smiling, and then I get my camera and you give me a solemn glare. I'll catch those giggles next time.