Monday, December 29, 2008

First Christmas

Four days of visiting, present opening, playing & eating has us all exhausted! Owen was so tired that twice he slept in until 8:30. This week we are trying to get back into our regular routine.

Christmas morning was so much fun! I got home around 7am from work & we brought Owen downstairs. Gavin was waiting with the video camera at the bottom of the stairs to tape Owen's reaction. Owen kept saying "cheese" because he thought he was getting his picture taken. Finally he saw his presents under the tree, his reaction was priceless. He pointed everything out "Elmo, tractor, toot toot (thomas)" he probably couldn't believe that all of his favourite things were in one room. He hadn't even seen the thomas table & train set yet. When we showed him the table he was so excited, it was so much fun to see how happy he was.

Here are a few pictures from Christmas morning. I'm hoping to post some video soon.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

30 Weeks

I can't believe that we are at 30 weeks already, it seems like we learned of the pregnancy just days ago. In less than 10 weeks our baby will be due, & will be considered full term in less than 8 weeks. We have agreed on names, & are now deciding on middle names that we like.

Our prenatal classes are going well. Although, this past friday we watched a video of three births, and things seem a little "simplified" on the video. I'm expecting things to be quite a bit more difficult than the video depicted. Also the husbands on the video were really annoying, I've already warned Gavin to not say the things that these husbands were saying to their partners! After watching the video we were split up into male and female groups so that we can discuss our fears. One girl in our group is terrified of giving birth, she actually starts to cry when she thinks about it. I often wonder if and when the fear of the birth will hit me, so far I've been quite calm thinking about the birth, I expect the anxiety and anxiousness to increase as the due date nears.

In other exciting baby news we learned today that we are expecting a nephew in early may! Also, a friend just learned of her tentative travel date to unite with her son in Vietnam! So many baby boys joining their families soon. We can't wait to welcome all of them home. So many new babies for future play dates!

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Prenatal Class

We had our first prenatal class last night. There were a total of five couples, and everyone knew the gender of their baby but us. Two of the couples are due in January and the rest of us are due in February. I can't help but wonder if we will meet up with any of them at the hospital.

It seemed like most people were concerned about the birth, while we are more worried about having two babies at home. Having Owen go through another major adjustment and how we can help him, is our main focus right now. I'm sure I'll have different worries once the contractions start.

The first class was an overview of anatomy, early labour, & relaxation techniques. I don't feel we learned much more than we already knew prior to the class, but it was nice to connect with other couples. I do think Gavin learned a few words that we don't usually say during daily conversation :) I also think the classes make things more real for us. We don't have any spare time to really talk about the new baby, because Owen keeps our time occupied, so it was really great to have a few hours to talk about this baby with one another.

We have a class next friday evening, then the following week is our hospital tour, followed by the final class. Hopefully we feel more prepared afterwards.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Owen Talking

Here is a short video of Owen talking. My favourite word of his is tractor, I think he says it so cute. We wanted to capture the way he pronounces words before he loses all of the baby talk.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

DR. Appointment

Today was the day that I had my glucose tolerance test. I have read that the orange drink tastes like flat orange pop, it wasn't too far off. I was surprised by how much I had to drink & how quickly. It didn't taste that bad ( I suppose if you hate orange flavour, then you wouldn't want to drink it), also it was a chilled drink so it went down easier. I am guessing that I won't hear anything about the test results unless there is a problem.

I was able to go to my OB appointment and not have to wait around for the hour before getting my blood taken. We heard the baby's heartbeat again, it sounded "nice & strong" according to the nurse. The heartbeat is so clear, loud & easy to find. I was weighed again & measured & everything looks good. My weight is up another 4 pounds, I've been gaining steadily so far. I am guessing that during this final trimester I will gain approx 10 more pounds. Bringing the total weight gain up to 30 pounds. We shall see, I likely just jinxed myself. We were also advised to start monitoring the fetal movements this week. Apparently I am to feel the baby move at least six times in a two hour time frame. If I notice a decrease in movement we are to go to the hospital, so that the baby can be monitored. So far it is quite obvious that the baby moves more often than that.

I had a few questions this time for the Dr. Mostly my questions were work related. It appears that I am free to work as long as I'd like, or until it is too uncomfortable, or until my water breaks, whichever comes first. I was worried about the heavy lifting & all of the bending that I have to do. The Dr. assured me that my body is use to that type of work now & that I should be safe to continue working.

We received a package of paperwork to be filled out for the next appointment in three weeks. The paperwork is all of the hospital pre-admission forms, including pain management, number of people in the delivery room etc. I suppose it is time to start thinking about all of that. After 30 weeks, we will see the Dr bi-weekly.

Thursday marks 28 weeks, 7th month, third trimester. However you say it, it means we are getting close.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Baby #2 Update

We are now 26 weeks pregnant and nearing the third trimester. I was shocked when I pasted the ticker on the blog & saw that there were less than 100 days to go! Time is speeding by, & we are no where near prepared. Gavin & I have decided that we will focus on getting everything ready for the baby early in the new year. That way, we can concentrate on preparing for Christmas with Owen & try to keep relaxed through the remainder of the year. Of course that plan may change in less than a month because we start our birth classes early December. How's that for a reality check!
Belly baby is growing right on target, as am I. Total weight increase so far has been 15 pounds, & I'm definitely getting "rounder". The baby is laying in a transverse position (across the belly). There is still lots of time for it to move head down, but so far it seems to like that position. Apparently 1% of babies are in this position making a vaginal birth impossible. However, after 32 weeks it is possible for a health care professional to try & turn the baby. Obviously we are hoping the baby clues into the fact that it is NOT coming out like that & needs to move around.
At 26 weeks, the baby's eyelids are opening, he or she responds to touch & sounds & is in the most active phase of movement. You can clearly see my belly move when the baby kicks or hiccups, & you can easily feel the movements from outside the body. Gavin can now hear the heartbeat just by putting his ear to my belly. It has been a really great experience for us.

Here are a few belly pictures to see the changes that are happening.

20 weeks

22 weeks

26 weeks

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

My Little Monkey

It was so hard to get good pictures of Owen in his halloween costume. Once he puts on that monkey suit he starts running! He loved his first halloween. He was quiet and shy trick or treating, but sure loved his chocolate when he got home. His favourite part of the evening was helping to answer the door for the other trick or treaters, and pass out candy to them.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

We took advantage of the great weather and went to a pumpkin farm yesterday. Owen loved running all over the place & he of course loved the tractors. There was face painting, pony rides, hay rides, a corn maze, and plenty of other things for little people to do.

We are so thankful for him to be home.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Baby News

On June 12th we learned that we were expecting our second child. I could not believe it when two dark pink lines showed up immediately on the pregnancy test. I was expecting the test to be negative, especially because I tested earlier than the recommended test date.

Much to my surprise I saw this:

I called my mom immediately, & then tried to wait patiently until Gavin came home to tell him the news. I wrapped the test in a gift bag & had Owen carry it to him. He had no idea what was going on. Gavin had a look of shock on his face when he looked at the test. Although he was happy, he didn't really believe it. He wanted me to test again in a few days. I did, the results were the same, we were pregnant.

With my family Doctor on maternity leave I had to have the pregnancy confirmed at a walk in clinic. We were recently referred to an OB, & heard the baby's heartbeat last week. Today we had an ultrasound, which confirmed that there was only one baby in there! The baby was kicking & moving his/her hands around.
So exactly 1 year + 1 day after seeing Owen's referral picture we saw this:

We are 15 weeks pregnant, & the baby is due February 19th. The pregnancy has been going great so far. I still have morning sickness but not as bad as in the first trimester. Other than that I feel great & am ready to meet baby number 2! My belly has been expanding by the week & Owen has taken it upon himself to keep poking me in the belly & laughing. Kids can be so honest sometimes. We also have no plans on finding out the gender, we are looking forward to that surprise.
Just click on the above picture to make it bigger.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

What a Difference A Year Makes

1 Year ago today we received our referral. I can not begin to describe the excitement & joy we felt seeing those three photos for the first time. It was one of the happiest days of my life. Just look at how much Owen has changed this past year.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Birthday Boy

We had our families over on the weekend to celebrate Owen's birthday. He had a great day opening presents, playing, & eating his first piece of chocolate cake. Next year we hope to have a big party with all of his little friends.

July 31st will always be a special day for us. It was the day that Owen was destined to join our family. We are so blessed to have him as our son. It is a day to remember everyone & everything that has made him so special.

We love you Owen. Happy Birthday my sweet baby.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Monday, May 19, 2008

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day

Last year I ached to hold my little boy. I felt very much like a mother in my heart. Gavin wrote me this lovely mother's day card last year.

It read :

The last 15 months have been quite a journey and I am so fortunate to have spent them with you. Everyday I see you more excited, and anxious, to become a great mother. I'm proud of you for doing so much research into parenting and encouraging me to do the same. I can honestly say that you have already made me a better parent (to be). I hope your first Mother's Day is a good one, with greater ones to come.

Love Gavin (and our baby to be)

This year my card from my sweet baby was perfect.

You do so much for me & daddy and we really appreciate it! I love you so much.
Love, Owen

Melt My Heart.

Owen gave me a few great gifts and then we spent the day at a local zoo. It was a fun way to spend the day as a family. My mom was even able to join us for Owen's first trip to the Zoo. Here are a few photos.

Happy Mother's Day! Especially to those that hold the love of their children in their hearts, but have yet to hold them.

Waiting Mommies Dinner #10

Last Night a group of over 20 of us met in Toronto for a "Waiting Mommies Dinner". The group is growing to about 50 members now, & hopefully the group will have more babies to show off soon. There were many more Vietnam waiting families there last night. Some are just starting the process & others are very close to referral.

I love the support the group offers. It doesn't matter where you are in the process of adopting, or what country you choose to adopt from. We are all in this together.

What a great way to spend the eve of my very first mother's day.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Sweet Boy

How sweet is this picture? he has the most beautiful smile. It was really difficult to get him to stay still long enough to get his picture taken. Every time they would try to snap his picture, he would crawl away.

Owen has been ours for almost three months now. It really seems like he has lived with us forever. We can't remember what life was like before him.

What we've been doing:
Owen is still co-sleeping with us. For us, it works. He sleeps through the night from about 8:30 pm. to 7am. Occasionally he wakes to make sure we are there, but settles back to sleep easily. He continues to have 2 naps a day, but they've gotten longer. He now naps between 1 & 2 hours each time. We are very strict when it comes to bedtime routine. We aim for getting him to bed the same time every night. The routine is basically, bath, books, bottle, brush teeth (he has 6 now, & he really likes to brush his teeth.) then to bed. We always listen to the same music when we are putting him to sleep as well. We let him sleep in a play pen in the living room & then carry him to bed when we are ready. I really feel that if he were in his own room, we would be in there many times a night. We take our cues from him, & don't rush him. We can tell he isn't ready to sleep alone & that is OK with us. At the orphanage the caregivers would sleep with the babies, he is very use to co-sleeping.

His favourite game is to be chased. He squeals with delight when he thinks you are chasing after him. It really makes your heart melt to hear him giggle & be so happy. You just have to say " Here I come. I'm going to get you!" & he gets the biggest grin.

He is not walking yet, but he can stand alone. He is comfortable walking with assistance, but is still too weary to take a step . I don't imagine it will be much longer though.

He can say a few words. He says momma, dada, babba (bottle), ugh oh, & ball. His new thing is to stand at the edge of the bathtub, throw each of his bath toys in the tub one at a time and say "ugh oh".

We are so thankful that the weather is finally getting nicer. We have made it to the park a few times now, & it is so fun to watch Owen try new things. He loves the swings & watching the other children run around & play.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Waiting Mommies Dinner #9

Last night a group of 10 of us gathered for another "waiting mommies dinner". The group is made up of waiting moms, & moms that have waited on children through adoption. There were moms last night that are waiting with China, Vietnam & Ethiopia. What a wonderful group, full of supportive women.

On the way to the dinner I thought about turning around & going home because Owen cried the entire time he was in the car!. I'm glad I stuck with my original plan, it is such a fun group to get together with. Before the dinner,I met up with my friend Bev. We like to do a little shopping at Yorkdale mall when we get the chance. We always stroll through the baby stores dreaming of what the new babies would like. We held back & didn't buy anything this time. Hard to believe.

Owen made his debut appearance, & was the hit of the party. That is until his 8pm bedtime, when daddy came to whisk him away. He was really good during the trip to the mall & the hour at dinner. He always makes mommy so proud! I got a little emotional talking about going back to work after parental leave. So silly really, I don't even go back to work for another 4 months.

When I arrived home Gavin had put Owen to bed, & he was sleeping peacefully. He had fallen to sleep in the car, that is after crying for half an hour on the way home. I have no idea why he hates the car. It is proving to be difficult taking him on outings that's for sure!.

I can't wait until the next waiting mommies dinner in May! I hope there are many things to celebrate. Referral news for some of my friends would be a blessing! It would be so fun to share the photos at a dinner just before mothers day. Here's hoping!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Birthday Party'n

We went to a birthday party on the weekend for a friend of Owen's. It was to be on saturday, but with the last dump of snow it was pushed to sunday. Here is Owen enjoying his time on his little friends ATV.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

baby shower/gift mania

WOW! Owen sure is loved. There was a baby shower on saturday for Owen. Below are some photos of all of his gifts in our living room, & of him playing with some of his toys.I took my camera with me to the baby shower, but for some reason forgot to take pictures!. Other people took pictures, so i'm sure i can get some from them. I"m glad we took the mini van with us, because the van was full of gifts when we left. crazy really.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

the main man

I can't believe how hard it is to find a minute to update the blog. This baby is keeping us busy for sure. A typical day starts at 7am and goes straight to 7pm. Owen only naps a total of 1 hour the entire day. i think he's afraid to miss something. At night though he sleeps with us & is sleeping through the night (mostly). If he does wake up, we are able to soothe him & get him back to sleep easliy. Usually he just reaches out his arm to make sure we are still there. Sometimes though he pats your face & giggles & starts clapping his hands in the middle of the night, It is usually when we know he is awake but hoping he goes back to sleep. You can't help but laugh at him. He is so funny sometimes. Even at 3am he can be so cute!

We have been trying to balance family time, one on one time with owen, & visiting friends & family. We had a welcome home party a couple of weeks ago & had friends & family over that day. Now we are focusing on owen & spending time with him. We have been gaining his trust little by little. He has come a long way from that first day we had him. He is amazing. So trusting with his little heart already. We just love him.

After he has a bottle he just turns into us & goes to sleep. So sweet. He doesn't try to hold his bottle anymore, he lets us feed him. We want him to know that he has a mom & dad now to look after him. Feeding is going very well. He LOVES food. Which is obvious because at his last DR. appointment he weighed 20 pounds. If we are eating & he isn't watch out!

Vietnam feels like it was so long ago. We are already talking about when we would like to go back & visit.Most days i can't believe he is finally home. It seems like we've always been together.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Thursday, January 31, 2008

We're coming home!

As that Daughtry song keeps going through our head, we'll soon be coming back to Canada.

Our time here in Vietnam has gone by so fast and there are still many things we would like to see. I guess they'll have to wait till we come back. I'm thinking maybe in spring or fall next time. A few more sunny days would've helped to get us out on a few more tours.

All in all though, we did come here to get Owen and mission accomplished! We received his Visa today so the only thing stopping us now is a 15hr flight and customs. (Let's hope the customs people are having a good day?!)

A few members of our family and friends are meeting us at the airport when we arrive on Saturday. If anyone would like to join them both of our parents have the flight info.

See everyone soon!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sights of Hanoi

Over the past couple days we've had the opportunity to get out and see some of Hanoi's great culture.

On Friday we made a short visit to the Temple of Literature. The architecture was amazing and even thought most of the historical stories we're in vietnamese I think we got the gist of it. Owen's been great on outings. Most of the times he takes in the fresh air and has a nap. He may be missing the sights, but we're making sure to get it all on film.

Yesterday morning we got up early to take in a show at the Water Puppet Theatre. We discovered that it's one of the last Theatres of its kind in the world. They say it's a lost art. The show was fun, made up of authentic music and historic fables. Definitely a must see.

Afterwards we met with a friend of ours at a nice hotel in Hanoi for Dim Sum. We haven't tried it before and the variety of more chinese food was great. While we were there we got the chance to check out Hanoi from the rooftop of the hotel. What an amazing view. You really get a chance to discover how huge Hanoi really is! The population is estimated to be close to 8 million people working/living here.

As Owen gets more comfortable with us we may venture out to do a bit more shopping. (The deals in Vietnam are amazing!)

Also, we're trying to update our flickr account with more photos as we take them, so click on the badge to the right for more pics!