Wednesday, March 25, 2015

LIfe Updates



First of all I want to thank everyone that commented and reached out after my last post. It was very comforting hearing all of your kind words and best wishes. The past couple months have definitely had their ups and downs and admittedly I've been quite a funk of just not really having much motivation to do anything. The time of year, right after the holidays, along with the depressing winter weather and seemingly constant sickness that we've dealt with hasn't helped my mood much either.

But slowly and surely I seem to be coming out of it. The longer days and steadily increasing temperatures are definitely helping. And despite dealing with the loss I had in December and my yearly case of winter blues I did have quite a few fun and happy moments over the last couple of months. 

In January we took Hunter to his first Monster Truck Jam. Hunter has been OBSESSED with Monster trucks for close to a year and even watches videos on YouTube so when we saw one was coming to DC we knew we HAD to take him. And he had a great time, though admittedly I think Kristian had even more fun. He did get a bit scared at one point when he took of his headphones and realized how loud those trucks actually are. 



Kristian and I also had a very nice date night courtesy of my company's belated Holiday dinner/party at The Capital Grille which is a very nice restaurant with amazing food. We had such a wonderful night full of good food and lots of laughs with my coworkers. 


In February we celebrated Valentines Day with a nice, quiet evening at home. We dropped Hunter off at my mom's house for his first solo overnight visit and they both had a blast. Not having him home made the house very quiet and bit a strange but it was also nice to be able to sleep in the next morning. 


We've had quite a few snowstorms this winter which has thrilled Hunter. He just loves the snow and could stay out playing for hours. I actually didn't mind the few snow days I had home with him either. 



Easily the highlight of the past two months was the birth of my new niece!! Miss Violet Christine was born on March 5th, five days past her due date and the day after her daddy's birthday, during a snowstorm! We all had a feeling once we saw the weather forecast that's when she would decide to arrive and we were right. Luckily they made it to the hospital safely and she arrived about 5 hours later. My brother and sister-in-law didn't know the sex but we were all thrilled to find out they had a little girl who is named after my grandmother (Violet) and her mommy's middle name (Christine). The best part is they live right up the street from me so I've been able to get baby snuggles often.

Hunter was so excited to meet his baby cousin the day after she was born. He did so well and was very gentle with her. It was a bit surreal being back in the hospital where he was born now three years later. In fact they were in the room right across the hall from mine. 



In other big milestone news, Hunter had his first dentist appointment on St. Patrick's Day (the practice we took him too doesn't take patients under 3) and he did AWESOME! I was so proud of how brave he was. He didn't cry or get scared, in fact he seemed to really enjoy the whole process. It helped having one of our friends as his dental hygentist, oh and the treasure chest at the end of the appointment may have helped a bit as well!


We don't have any major plans or events coming up in the next couple of months and to be honest I'm really happy about that. Right now I really just want to focus on quality family time and spending as much time with Hunter as I can, he's growing up so fast and I really want to enjoy this time with him since I'm still hoping to one day add a little brother or sister to mix. 


Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Loss

Two weeks ago, the day before Hunters 3rd birthday I miscarried our second child. It was a heartbreaking loss that came only a couple weeks after finding out I was pregnant and after about 7 months of trying to get pregnant. It happened naturally while I was at home and later confirmed at the hospital. It was only a few days earlier that we had excitedly shared the news with our immediate family for Christmas. The timing was a bit of a punch in the gut (not that there is ever a good time for this sort of thing), because exactly 3 years earlier we had been heading to the same hospital to start the process of having a baby and here we were 3 years later on the same night, going to the same hospital to confirm the loss of another. I could have waited until the next day to confirm at my doctors office but I refused to get bad news on Hunters birthday. I didn't want this to in anyway tarnish his special day.

While this loss as been hard we are trying to stay positive. At least I was able to get pregnant again, which for a while I had worried wouldn't happen.  And as far as miscarriages go, if you are going to have one this was probably the best scenario for it to happen in....I was at home (on vacation from work), it happened early (before we had told EVERYONE) and it happened naturally (no surgery needed). The doctor also didn't see any reason why we couldn't try again. So we will...try again...and hopefully we will get some happy news again soon and bring home another healthy baby. And if not, we are still incredibly blessed to have our amazing son who has brought us both so much joy and comfort through this whole process. We have also grown so much closer as a couple, my husband as been truly amazing the last few weeks and I couldn't be more grateful.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Three

On Dec. 30th Hunter turned 3 years old! It's still amazing to me that I have a 3 year old, he's no longer a toddler but a full fledged pre-schooler who seems even older than his age. We had his 3 year check up yesterday and he did amazing, unlike last year where he cried the entire time, this year he smiled and talked to the doctor and performed all the tests without any issues. He's perfectly healthy and now weighs 38 lbs and is 38.5" tall, our perfect 38/38. He's grown 3.5" in the last year which his doctor said is on the high side. It doesn't surprise me since he's bigger than most of the kids his age at school.

I really loved the age of 2, it was far from "terrible" that is typically associated with that age. Hunter really grew into such a wonderful, sweet, funny, smart little boy. His communication and reasoning skills amaze everyone that knows him and they all insist that he seems much older. I just love our conversations and seeing his imagination in action when he's playing. And he's funny. Really, really funny! This kid is a total comedian and we're convinced he's the future class clown. His goal in life is making people laugh and he does a great job of it.

Hunter is a total mama's boy, he's constantly offering up hugs and kisses and telling me that I'm pretty and that he loves me. Total heart melter. He also insist that I put him to bed or comfort him when he's sad which is sweet but exhausting at times. With all that said he does adore his daddy, they are always having little adventures and he's pretty much a mini version of Kristian personality-wise.

This was a big year for Hunter developmentally with the biggest change being that he is now potty-trained!!! Starting right at 2 1/2 he began using the potty at home (he had been using it at school for a few months prior) and within a couple weeks was fully day trained and in underwear with very few accidents. A couple months back we even began putting him in underwear during nap time and he did great. Now he's only in pull ups at night and sometimes he will wake up and tell me if he needs to go but he still has a wet pull up every morning so we are far from being 100% in underwear.

In November we finally transitioned him to a "big boy" bed ... converted his crib to a toddler bed. Hunter never tried to climb out of his crib and slept great in it, he even said he didn't want a big boy bed whenever we would ask him. But finally, on Thanksgiving weekend we bit the bullet and changed it over, surprisingly he LOVED his "new" bed. What he didn't love and what was a harder transition was getting rid of the paci which we did at the same time. He only used it for naps and bedtime but it definitely helped him sleep and taking it away was tough on all of us. For a good month he continued to ask for it and even now if he wakes up in the middle of night it's much harder to get him back to sleep. He has started having bad dreams and insisting there are monsters in his room so sleep hasn't been that great. He has also slowly begun to give up naps, much to my disappointment #napsforlife.

For his birthday this year I skipped the big birthday party at home and went the easy route of having his party at a local bounce house play place.... all I had to bring were the goody bags and juice boxes and his Aunt Melissa made and brought his cake. The bounce house place did everything else, including providing the food and drinks and all for far less than I normally spend on home parties so it was a win all the way around. Oh and he had a BLAST!

Hunter continues to bring us so much joy, I couldn't ask for a better little boy. He is the absolute light of our life and we are so thankful for him.

Last Day as a 2 year old!

Happy Birthday! 12/30/14

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Catching up on October

I never really planned on not posting for the past month. It certainly wasn't due to having nothing to write about but more because October was incredibly busy for me. Right now is our busy season at work and we also have a coworker out on maternity leave (this is her third maternity leave during the busy season...we are all a bit bitter about the situation), and I've had to once again cover a majority of her projects. My boss was also on a business trip for a week so I had to cover a number of his projects and of course my own work. Did I mention it's our busy season? Things will continue to be nuts until December but then I can relax again just in time for the holidays.

Our weekends have been busy with fall activities and family stuff. Kristian is now in full hunting mode so for the next couple weekends we won't see much of him, between that and the cold weather we will be doing a lot of movie watching.

So here's my photo dump for the month of October.

We went to the pumpkin patch three times but these photos are from when we went to the BIG one over at Cox farm. This place is awesome (and expensive) but Hunter had an absolute blast going down all the slides, checking out the animals, going on his first hayride and running around. Great family day!







He also has his school pictures again. He gets them twice a year at preschool (spring and fall) and this year I really thought he would do well. He's used to having his photo taken and typically will sit still and smile for me. Well he apparently HATES the photographer they use because he had a total meltdown. See evidence below:


Our local fire department had an open house one Saturday and my mom and I took Hunter to check out all the trucks and activities. It was a great time. He LOVES fire trucks and despite the bad weather it was a great event. His BFF Jordynn also stopped by. 




We celebrated Kristian's birthday with a small party at our house. We had my brother and sister-in-law over along with two of his best friends and their kids. It was very low-key but a lot of fun. My type of party!

Then of course was Halloween. Hunter was PUMPED for Halloween this year. He finally understood what it was about and could remember trick or treating last year. For months I had asked him what he wanted to be and every time he said "SPIDER-MAN"!! Not sure why he's so obsessed with spider-man but it was easy enough so I didn't care. He LOVED his costume, even the face mask. He got to wear his costume for a birthday party the weekend before, then again at school for "trunk or treat' and then of course for trick or treating. We went with his two little buddies that live on our street, just like last year. Hunter did awesome. Went up to every house and said "trick or treat" or "happy halloween" and usually remembered to say thank you. We even got to go to my brother's house for candy. We have SOOO much leftover between what we bought (my mom came over to pass out candy while Kristian and I took Hunter out) and what Hunter brought home. Oh and Moxie was a spider. Everyone LOVED her costume.






Oh and one other thing I wasn't able to mention until very recently is that my brother and sister-in-law are expecting a baby!! They just got married back in June and brought home an extra special souvenir from their honeymoon!! :) I've known since right after they found out (she needed the phone number for my OB) but they didn't make it "Facebook official" until September. They are not finding out the sex and are due at the end of February. I can't wait to meet my new niece or nephew and have them living so close by. Hunter and his new cousin will hopefully be the best of friends.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Truckin Along

Like a lot of little boys Hunter is and has been pretty much obsessed with all things trucks, buses, cars for a while now. I honestly couldn't even tell you how many toys he has that are one of the above. He can spot a truck or bus from a mile away when driving down the road, so when I found out there was a Touch-A-Truck event at the local community college I knew we had to take him. Being able to get up close and personal with all of his favorite vehicles was pretty much his dream come true and we loved watching how excited he got over everything.

We got there as soon as it opened at 10am to avoid any lines and stayed about 2 hours. The weather was perfect and it never got overly crowded. Hunter insisted that his favorite was the excavator though I would argue his actual favorite was jumping in the bounce houses they also had setup. Kid loves a bounce house. He was also excited when his buddy/our neighbor Zachary showed up. It was like Wrestlemania with the two of them in the bounce house together.

It was such a fun day for all of us and we definitely plan to take him back again next year.











Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Fall Weekends are the Best Weekends

I haven't posted any updates for a while because for the most part nothing terribly exciting or post worthy was going on. Our summer was pretty relaxed and we spent most of our weekends at the pool or running errands. But now that it's fall and the weather is gorgeous I've been trying to plan more outdoor activities so that we can enjoy the fresh air before the dreaded never-ending winter arrives and keeps us locked inside for months.

This past weekend was one of my favorites that we've had in a while. On Saturday we had the annual "house divided" football game where Kristian's Virginia Tech Hokies play my East Carolina Pirates. And for the first time since 2008 MY Pirates WON!! And better yet they beat those turkeys at their own school. It was glorious and I had no problem rubbing it in my sweet pouting husbands face. After 5 years of having to suffer through defeats this win was fantastic.

On Sunday we took Hunter for his first train ride at a park about 15 minutes from our house. Because the weather was perfect the park was packed and though the train runs every 20 minutes or so every ride was filled. We got there right as it was about to leave and Hunter was SO excited. We couldn't wipe the smile off his face. It was a short 10 minute ride but he loved every second, especially when we went through the tunnel.





After the train ride we walked over to the Carousel so that Hunter could once again mark off another box on his list of firsts. I rode with him and once again he loved every second of "riding his horsey". This is probably one of the only amusement park-type ride I will ever get on with him.


He then ran over to the playground where he went down the curly slide about a dozen times. The only way we could get him off of it was to mention going to the ice cream parlor that was also in the park. He lead the way despite having never been there before, it was like a dog that could smell food. He ate 2 big scoops of chocolate ice cream before we headed home and he crashed for a 3 hour nap. 


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After watching the Redskins (finally) win a game! We headed to my in-laws house for dinner. Once again Hunter had a blast, as he always does at Grandma and PaPa's house, spending time with his aunt, uncle and cousins. By the time we got home we were all pretty wiped out but agreed it was one of the best days we had had in a while. 

 
 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Bermuda

Last week Kristian and I went on a fantastic vacation in Bermuda. We went with another couple, one of Kristian's best friends from childhood and one of my friends/coworkers who are now dating thanks to my wonderful matchmaking abilities.

I will admit Bermuda was never really on my radar as a place I wanted to travel too. Not for any particular reason other than it's not a place that I hear much about, but our friend Josh has been there several times and suggested it when we were trying to figure out where to go. What I didn't realize was that Bermuda is not in the Caribbean, it's actually just off the coast of South Carolina (geography is not my strong suit), making it only a 2 hour direct flight from DC.

My mother agreed to come and watch Hunter for the week so that we could have a nice relaxing trip and focus on being husband and wife rather than mommy and daddy. And let's face it, Hunter LOVES his time with nana.



We left on Saturday at 10:30am out of Reagan National. It was our first time flying first class which was pretty exciting. Since it was such a short flight we didn't have too much time to enjoy it however, in my opinion the best part was being some of the first people off the plane and in line getting through customs. 



 We were able to get two rooms next to each other with an ocean view at the Grotto Bay Beach Resort. It was only about a 5 minute drive from the airport and about a 20 minute drive from the city of Hamilton, so very conveniently located. 

The resort was great, there was a pool with a swim-up bar, private beach area, two indoor restaurants and an outdoor restaurant and the best part (and why we choose it) there are caves...that you can swim in...and get spa treatments in. It was pretty awesome. There were actually a lot of families there with young kids and a lot of Europeans. Everyone including the locals that we met and the other tourists were incredibly friendly.





Anytime we go anywhere tropical Kristian becomes obsessed with lizards and trying to catch them. Well he did end up catching one on the second day. The rest of them were a bit too quick for him.

We spent most days on the beach or by the pool. The first day the weather wasn't great, cloudy and rainy on and off but after that it was gorgeous and would just typically rain at night. It was warm without being super hot or humid and the water was great.




The caves were really cool, they were only open from 9am-5pm and you were allowed to go down and swim (at your own risk, no lifeguard). The water was REALLY cold, so I only got in once...briefly, but Kristian got in everyday and would swim around. He loved it.






Our view was pretty amazing everyday.


We ate dinner together as a group three nights and two of the nights we did our own thing to have private couple time. We got the all inclusive food/drink package at the resort which I HIGHLY recommend. The cost of food and drinks down there is VERY expensive. The all inclusive was $100/per person per day which was a bargain. For example had we not been on the package then one of our lunches, just the two of us, of chicken tenders/fries and a fish sandwich with two diet cokes would have cost $60. Yeah. 

The food was pretty good and they had a nice selection to choose from so overall we were very happy with that.

Our traveling buddies- Josh and Cathie. We all had a blast together. 

Spinach and lobster ravioli.

Some Duck dish (it was my husbands)









Definitely one of the highlights was getting a couples massage down in the caves. They have a separate section of the caves just for spa treatments and Kristian and I did two different couples massages down there. Very cool and relaxing. Cathie and I also got facials together but those were done in their spa room.
One of the nights the resort hosted a BBQ dinner out by the pool which included some Bermudian dancers and music. It was a great night. 





On our last full day we all went into the city of Hamilton together to get lunch and do some shopping. Bermuda is a very clean, safe and beautiful island. I always felt very comfortable off of the resort and just walking around the streets unlike some other overseas destinations (i.e. Jamaica). In fact I felt safer walking around Hamilton than I do certain parts of DC. 

There are many high end shops right by the water and this is where the cruise ships let off. After a couple of hours of shopping (including my husband buying me a GORGEOUS David Yurman ring) we headed back to the resort to change and relax a bit.


That night we headed back to Hamilton for dinner and drinks and to check out the Harbor Nights that they do every Wednesday. They shut down the main street and set up little booths where vendors sell various items. We had a blast and stayed out until the bar closed.






While we were out at the bar hanging out with one of the locals we made friends with we ended up meeting the guy below (I don't remember his name) but he's basically one of the most famous guys on the island. Back in the 70/80's he was a world famous Cricket player on the Bermuda team, from what I gathered he was sort of like the Michael Jordan of Bermuda Cricket. Nowadays he owns a lot of restaurants/bars and apparently is co-owner of the resort we stayed at. He was super nice and we talked to him for a while.


This is Jamie, one of the locals we met and became friends with. We hung out with him and his wife and they were both the sweetest people. Jamie seemed to know everyone, perks of living on a small island I guess.


We flew back on Thursday and had a very long travel day including a 5 hour layover in Philly, all so we could wait for a flight that took less than an hour back to DC. We seriously considered just renting a car and driving back from Philly but we would have had to sit in rush hour traffic shich none of us felt very motivated to do so we just hung around the airport and finally got home around midnight.

Overall, we loved Bermuda. Of the four places we've gone together - Jamaica, St. Lucia, Grand Cayman and Bermuda it was our second favorite with St. Lucia being our favorite because well...honeymoon. I highly recommend a trip there but just make sure to go in the summer months, since it's not in the Caribbean it can get a bit chilly and not very beach-like in the off season. We would definitely go back again.