Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sunshine, sales, and puppy dog tails!

I now realize that I took mother nature for granted when I lived in California. Here in Alaska, the sunshine is definitely not a force to be taken lightly. We spend months on end without receiving much of it at all, but then are blessed with long summer days where the sun decides to rest well after we do. Fortunate for us, the weekends have been fairly nice…despite the unpleasant weekdays. I’m not sure what is it about the fresh air and the nature scene, but being in the beautiful outdoors always seems to make me happier and more relaxed. Whether you’re sitting on the grass reading a book, hiking a mountain, or just exploring some trails, GET YOURSELF A DOSE OF NATURE! It definitely does the body good.

Our little family loves to hike. Plain and simple. When the weather is nice we usually pack up the bags, grab the dogs (and a gun!) and hit the trails! I’m so thrilled that Lucas enjoys being dragged along on our journeys….we all know how an unhappy toddler can ruin the fun. It’s amazing to see his excitement when exploring the great outdoors! Children are amused by the tiniest of things, and it truly does make a simple task more enjoyable to see their curiosity blossom. Lucas is our little nature explorer in the making!

I am an absolute bargain shopper, just like my grandmother, and a sale almost always gets my attention. I have found myself in Michael's three times in the past few days because I just have to use my coupons!! But I’m happy to say that I found myself a new hobby…making picture frames! I’ve been using all my scrapbook papers and embellishments to cover $1 wooden frames and I am really proud of the outcomes. I’ll post some pictures of my creations once I have a bit more completed.

And finally, puppies! We decided to go ahead with our initial plan of breeding our baby girl, Rori. We found a handsome little stud (with Hawaiian bloodline) and we let nature takes its course. We should have a litter of fully papered Jack Russell puppies during the second week in July! When Levi came home from work that evening she jumped into his lap and stared at him with the guiltiest little look I’ve ever seen. It was as if she was so ashamed to let her daddy know that she actually did the deed! It was hilarious, but exactly why having girls scares me!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Toddler Trials

So I've decided to take a leap and join into the ever evolving world of blogging. I don't know if I’d necessarily consider myself to be interesting, but I do know that my life is never dull…even if I wanted for it to be! Since the day there appeared a plus sign on a pregnancy test, my life has been forever changed! I promise not to make every entry about my amazing son, but in the spirit of getting this whole thing started I thought this would be a wonderful time to do what all parents do most…BRAG!

My son truly is my entire life. There have been so many times that I’ve wondered if my life had any meaning at all before his arrival. I am so blessed to have a wonderful husband who has been nothing short of supportive in my desire to be a stay-at-home mommy. For the first 10 months of Lucas’ life it was just me and him- all day, every day! Just shy of his first birthday I decided to start my own in-home daycare so that he could get the social interactions that he needed, and I could make a bit of income without heading back into the work force. Great decision! I love these children as if they were my own and having them around has continued to push Lucas even more.

I’ve never met a child more eager to learn and I am so proud that my son finds genuine satisfaction in exploring. By 12 months, when they say a child should have 1-2 solid words in their vocabulary, Lucas already had 18! I am shocked each and every day as his communication skills improve. (Last week while I was at the store I had an actual conversation with him on the phone-definitely blew my mind.) I love being told what he wants and needs, but I definitely wasn’t prepared for all the back talk this early!

Here are some of Lucas’ current achievements before reaching 18 months:

ANIMALS: can we say obsessed?! He not only can identify an animal when asked, but he can now tell ME (very clearly) what they are and imitate sounds of nearly half of them. Whether it be farm animals, jungle animals, or ocean animals….he loves them!

SHAPES: his favorites are circle, triangle, star, and rectangle. He has been successfully identifying them when he finds them around the house and even runs his cute little index finger around the rim to show that he know what he’s talking about.

COLORS: Well, he used to do wonderful at identifying all of the primary colors, but now everything is just BLUE! Favorite color perhaps?

BIG BOY BED: He has always been a crabby monster in the mornings because he wanted out of his bed the moment he woke up…literally. I’ve physically seen him jump up before his eyes have even opened and I must say, I don’t get it! I often wonder at what point in time does a kid realize that sleep is actually GOOD?! Anyways, we decided to take a shot at converting the crib to a toddler bed and boy were we surprised! For the first few days he got up only once each time we laid him down and he even began napping for a longer period of time. Now he comes and wakes us up happy as can be every morning! WHY DIDN'T WE DO THIS SOONER?!?!

POTTY TRAINING: WOW- I think my child is a freak of nature. Everywhere I’ve read recommends that you don’t start potty training until the child exhibits that THEY are ready…which for boys is almost always after the age of 2. Since he’s been so advanced in everything else, I though “what the heck, let’s give it a try!” If we set him on the potty his will go pee a good portion of the time. And just recently he’s been running to me yelling “MOMMY…PEE-PEE POTTY!” We’ve yet to do the #2, but he comes and tells me “POO-POO” or “POTTY” every time his goes in his diapers. It’s a big first step!!

As any parent will tell you, there is nothing more rewarding than watching your child grow! I am so blessed to be such a positive contributing factor in his development and I cannot wait to see where his life is headed. He is the biggest sweet heart (most of the time) and always brings a smile to my face… no matter how rough of a day we’ve had. I have to say though that he genuinely makes parenting enjoyable. I mean seriously, how many other kids beg to brush their teeth, go to bed, and even eat veggies?! (Yes, he asks for green beans for breakfast and will carry around a bowl of peas for snack!) And best of all, he whole-heartedly believes that mommy’s kisses make everything better!! What more could you ask for?

The hubby and I both decided that it’s time to finish up school, so we are scheduled to begin the summer semester next week. I am very focused on finishing my nursing degree because I know it will not only better myself, but my family as well. But that doesn’t changed the fact that I am indeed NERVOUS! I have a very demanding class load this summer that I must complete prior to admission into the bachelor's program. I have successfully been mommy and wife, now it’s time to add student back to the list….all while trying to stay healthy and active by making the most of these beautiful summers we have here in Alaska. I’ve always found relaxation in writing so I hope that blogging this new journey of my life will give me more incentive to stay focused on what’s most important to me…giving my mommy all!