Thursday, September 29, 2011

Oz: Part 3.

Thursday was our Blue Mountain/Featherdale excursion. We woke up bright and early and headed to a casino off of Darling Harbour to catch our coach for the day. We thought for sure we were going to miss our bus, so we were running up and down the hills trying to find where we were supposed to be. Sweating and rushing (and slightly freaking out) we finally found it. Then we found out we went WAY out of our way (of course) before ending up where we needed to be. And once we checked in? We were told we had twenty minutes to spare. While we were running, Jennie and I decided we would not be the best competitors on the Amazing Race. Who knew running with backpacks was so hard??

Once on our bus we took a drive to the Blue Mountains to get a view of the Katoomba Waterfall and the Three Sisters. First stop was the Blue Mountains, which is also on the World Heritage Area list. They got the name because of the eucalyptus trees that cause a bluish haze when the light hits it. It was very gorgeous.

{close up of the three sisters}

The Three Sisters is a rock formation in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales, Australia. They are close to the town of Katoomba and are one of the Blue Mountains' best known sites, towering above the Jamison Valley. Their names are Meehni (922 m), Wimlah (918 m), and Gunnedoo (906 m). The Three Sisters have an aboriginal legend behind them, that they lived in the Jamison Valley as members of the Katoomba tribe and they fell in love with three men from a neighbouring tribe (the Nepean tribe), but marriage was forbidden by tribal law. The brothers were not happy to accept this law and so decided to use force to capture the three sisters causing a major tribal battle. Battle ensued, and the sisters were turned to stone by an elder to protect them, but he was killed in the fighting and no one else could turn them back. This legend is claimed to be an Indigenous Australian Dreamtime legend. (Thank you wikipedia for the help)

{Jennie and Boone meditating}

After viewing the sisters we took part in the Katoomba Scenic Railway which is said to be the steepest cable-driven funicular railway in the world, with an incline of 52 degrees over a distance of 415 metres. It was originally constructed for a coal and oil shale mining operation in the Jamison Valley in the 1880s, in order to haul shale from the valley floor up to the escarpment above. It was converted for use as a tourist attraction prior to World War II.

In 2000, Scenic World spent millions of dollars on the Sceniscender, now called Scenic Cableway, a unique cable attraction which lowers riders straight off a cliff into the Jamison Valley 200m below.

Built in 1958, the Scenic Skyway is another cable-driven conveyance at Scenic World. It travels across the gorge above the Katoomba Falls, 200 metres above the valley floor. It features an 84 person cabin with sections of electrostatic glass that turns the floor from opaque to transparent as the ride progresses. Thank you to wikipedia for all of the facts that I couldn't quite remember.

{glass before}

{glass after}

Anyhow we had a blast walking the forest floor, and taking advantage of all of the rides. Afterwards we hopped back on our coach and traveled to Featherdale Wildlife Park.

Featherdale was AMAZING. I could have spent much, much longer in there than the hour and a half that we had. It was definitely a blast! The kanagaroos were just hopping around freely inside. You could walk up to them and pet them. They even had ice cream cones filled with alfalfa that you could buy for a dollar and feed to them. They loved it and they were SO cute. We made it in time for Penguin feeding time and Tazmanian Devil feeding time. While we were there we also saw peacocks, pelicans, dingoes and koalas. The koalas were adorable, the handlers would hold them and they would just hold on to their shirts like a little toddler holds on to his Mommy. So precious. You could pet/touch most of the animals and the staff were very informative and shared many facts about the animals.

{Look at this bundle of cuteness!}

{not so fond of Boone}

{Penguin feeding time}

{Tazmanian Devil feeding time}

{Dingo feeding time}


After wandering around Featherdale it was time to head back into Sydney, driving through Olympic Park on the way. We were exhausted by the time we returned. That evening we headed out to an area of town called "Crow's Nest" and ate at a cute italian restaurant. I had some AMAZING lasagna and then we all had gelato for dessert. Then we went home and crashed. Friday was play day with Missy!!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fall List

Well, I consider my summer list to be fairly successful, so why not have a fall list?

1. Go to the park multiple times in this gorgeous weather!
2. Go to the zoo.
3. Visit the pumpkin patch and see what a difference a year makes!
4. Trick or treat (and pass out candy too)
5. Visit my Granddaddy.
6. Cook lots of soup/chili. This one really shouldn't be listed as it is sort of a given.
7. Make s'mores. This just sounds delightful.
8. Play in the leaves and take lots of pictures.

I won't lie. It's hard for me to think of exciting fall things to do besides just enjoying the gorgeous weather. I can admit that I am NOT a fan of fall. Why? Because fall is SO short and then it's winter. Winter is my least favorite season and it just seems to drag out all cold and nasty for everrrrrrr. So, please spring, hurry up and get here!!!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Myringotomy: Update

I mentioned in Camden's 13 month letter that we went back to the ENT for our two week post op and his right tube was covered in a clot and was non functional. We were told to put three drops of mineral oil in it nightly for three weeks, massage it in and hope for the best. The doctor said "this works eighty percent of the time. The other times we have to go back in and fix it with surgery".

Yikes. Surgery again? Not a fan myself, neither is the bank account.

I've been faithfully putting in the drops and have been praying over him, along with family members, that this clot would resolve.

He had his fall Thursday at daycare and he fell on the right side of his head. I can't say if that may have helped or not, but this is what has been going on all weekend.

{Thursday night}

{Friday after running errands}

Now, it looks gross and it really is pretty oozy. Of course it didn't start hardcore oozing until 5:15 on Thursday evening so I called Friday as soon as the ENT office opened. When I finally got a call back I heard what I was hoping to hear, "That means you are doing good Mom! Keep putting in the oil and call us back Monday with an update. It's a good sign if it's oozing".

(I don't think I have used the word ooze this often in my life)

Anyhow, this was the news we were hoping for! So I will continue with the drops and call back on Monday. Maybe this means it is resolving, I won't know for sure until someone looks in there. But I do know that Camden definitely feels the oozing as he keeps sticking his finger in his ear. Gross. But, oozing. Yay!! Praise the Lord!

I am just so thankful for an almighty God who can heal the sick!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Out with the Old...

And in with the new.

{Camden's old crib at daycare}

{Camden's cubby in his new room}

{Part of the play area. It looks small but there are two other areas including little tables with chairs that they sit at to eat(chairs still buckle but they work on getting them to sit like big kids!). This also connects right to their playground area.}

I'll admit, I was in TOTAL denial about my baby moving up a room at daycare. I wanted to resist, I mean, how is it possible that my little one can do ONE nap a day? ON A COT?? Eat with a spoon? Play in the commons with the big kids? It just didn't seem possible.

I had no idea that he was going to be SO ready for it. And when I thought it would be IMPOSSIBLE to switch to one nap a day? He did it rather seamlessly and it may be the best thing ever. By the time I pick him up he has been up for about 45 minutes and had afternoon snack. So he is in an AMAZING mood and we get to play and have fun. Going to bed thirty minutes earlier isn't so much that I feel like I'm missing out on time spent with him, and I get a little bit more 'me' time. For not being a sleeper he has a decent schedule going on. He has really thrived on this schedule. He gets to go outside more and play. There is a lot more space and manipulatives. There are theme weeks. Last week was farm week. Everyday he did a related craft, sang farm songs, read farm books and had a blast. I have an adorable painted muddy pig, corn cob, tractor, cotton-balled sheep in crafts to bring home. I get such a detailed report about his day (I even know when he poops!) and what he did so I know he is in some very capable hands.

Even though I resist change, this change has been well worth it.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Thirteen Months.

Well, I questioned myself on how long I was going to continue to do these monthly letters. I figured if I am still referring to you in months, then what would it hurt to drop a quick little summary? I'm going to focus more on the bullet points to make them go a little bit quicker.

*You moved up to the big boy room the week after your birthday. This means you switched to whole milk at daycare (you still have some frozen breastmilk at home). This also means you are taking one nap a day, and it ranges from 2-3 hours.

*Because of this nap smoosh you have been going to bed thirty minutes earlier (around 730). This may not sound like a lot but it has been allowing Mommy to go to the gym after you go to bed. This is fabulous for everyone.

*You get three square meals a day, and two snacks. You get milk in the morning, with meals and at bed. At snacks you get juice or water.

*You are pointing all.the.time. You will point at what you want, and cry when you don't get it. You are can be impatient and dislike being told no.

*Once upon a time you LOVED vegetables. Now it's like pulling teeth to get you to eat any.

*Changing your diaper is like wrestling an alligator. I'll sing songs and dance in an effort to distract you but you take any chance to flip yourself over or cause some sort of mess.

*You are waving now. It is so precious. I'll come pick you up at daycare and you start waving because you know that seeing me means that it's time to go. You get so excited that you can't quit waving! You also usually let out an adorable "HEEEEEEEE" noise when you see me. You wave when we turn the water off in the tub. You wave when Mickey Mouse is over.

*In the last week or so you have taken a big dislike in being dropped off at daycare. You begin to cry as soon as I sit you down or hand you off. You know what is coming and you just don't want to leave your mommy.

*You have had quite the issue with sickness this past month. You had Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. You had a virus that left you with a fever for a week, and lots of snot and drools. You got tubes, when we went for our two week check up we found out that the right one is non-functional because it is clogged with blood. We are doing three drops of mineral oil nightly in an attempt to dislodge the clot. Hopefully this will work and we can avoid surgery.

*You LOVE yogurt melts and dried fruit that is mixed in with your puffs.

*Currently we are wearing 12 month tops/onesies and at least 18 month pants. 18 month pants are long and almost a little tight even. Your belly is pretty budda-like. You are wearing size 3 shoe and are transitioning to a 4 that is still big on you.

*You still only have two teeth. The past few days your nose has been running like a faucet and you are SUPER drooly. Drooling through three thick bibs a day at daycare, when we weren't using bibs earlier. We'll see! You love to watch us brush our teeth and you have been brushing your teeth before you had them. You love getting your (two) teeth brushed every morning!

*You love to climb. Lately I have found you standing on your toys to climb onto the fireplace. You love when your daddy helps you climb onto the chairs, and all you want to do is climb up and get down, then repeat.

*You had your first visit to the zoo. Mommy and Daddy had a coupon for free admission and it was too good to pass up. You loved running around and the freedom you had there, plus you were interested in the animals. You got to pet all the goats and were very intrigued by them.

*You love going to the park and sliding down the slides. You are almost a big boy doing this, and we let you scoot yourself down for the most part. In retrospect this may be a bad idea, seeing as how daycare called this morning and said you fell off of the big boy slide and bumped your head. I can't blame you, you love those things! You are still enjoying swinging and your dad and I like to walk to the park to play with you there after dinner.

*Funny story about the band aid report - The girl that saw you fall isn't one who normally takes care of you. When she picked you up she started freaking out. She saw your birthmark and was sure that you were already bruising. Needless to say she had ice on you quick, until the girl who normally takes care of you calmed her down. I think you gave her a good scare!

Well my little thirteen month old, we love you so much. Keep growing and making us proud!
Love you,

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

1 year stats

{Please pardon the crappy cell phone pic}

So apparently my baby with the BIG belly (Seriously. If he were to run into a wall his gut would hit first) is only in the 9th percentile for weight. What? I had the nurse double check. She said 50% is 22lbs. Who knew? So basically, lil C is short and fat. Also, pay no attention to the fact that his one year appointment was almost a month late. Oops.

He was so cute at the doctor's office. He ran up to the pediatrician and put his arms up, wanting to be picked up. So the doctor picked him up and then Camden laid his little head down on the doctor's shoulder. So-o adorable. He's not shy at all! The funniest part was shots. Let me explain, because I don't mean it was funny to watch my baby get his shots. While we were waiting on the nurse to come shoot us, he started to get fussy. The toy drawer in the room wasn't cutting it anymore so I busted out the handy cheerios. He was happily munching (gumming - since he still only has two teeth) on the cheerios when she came in. She decided to go ahead and do the shots even though there was still cheerios in his mouth and hand. He was not thrilled at ALL with the process and began to holler. I picked him up as soon as possible so he wouldn't choke on his gummy cheerios that were rolling around in his mouth as he was screaming. Once I sat him up? The kid stopped screaming and immediately began shoving the cheerios left in his hand, into his mouth. He's definitely all boy. Who knew Cheerios were better than a kiss on an owie? I will definitely be bringing those to our next appointment!
{My boys. And Camden with his bandaids after his shots. Poor thing}

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Oz: Part 2.

Monday and Tuesday of that week we also did some typical touristy things like walking the Sydney Harbour Bridge and wandering through Chinatown.

{Looking straight up at the Australian flag in the center top of the bridge}

{Do you see the bridge climbers?}

{view of the city from the bridge}

It was in Chinatown that we experienced the amazingness called an Emperor Puff. They were a quarter a piece and shaped like an acorn with creme filling inside. Sort of like a mini doughnut. You could walk right up to the windows of the bakery and they would sell just the emperor puffs from there, you could watch the employees pull them off of the machine. Yum!

Wednesday was another day for us to explore and wander. We did wandered that morning to Darling Harbour and did some shopping and snacking. It was at this snacking that we ate at a restaurant called Oporto and ate some fries with chicken salt. Let me just say it was love at first bite. Chicken salt was amazing, how come I had no idea? I was delighted with this new addition, but was not delighted with their version of ketchup. They call all ketchup "tomato sauce" unless it is by Heinz, then it's ketchup. But their "tomato sauce" has a weird after taste and definitely tasted NOTHING like American ketchup. Oh well, you can't win them all.

Then it was time for whale watching. We were told the original boat we had signed up for was out for repairs so they scheduled us on a more of an "adventure boat" according to Sensational Eco Tours. This boat had seats three across and you were to straddle the seat like you were riding a horse. Once the boat got to going, you were supposed to stand up and bounce through your knees and hold on to the seat in front of you.

{it was really windy-so I'm all puffed up!}
{A view from the boat}

So we rode the boat out about thirty minutes and then searched for whale spouts. We had been out there a total of about an hour and a half, then as we were about to head back in, there they were! Whales! They were amazing to see, so big and so majestic. Then we headed back to the land and on the way we tried to not smother the kids from the "uni" (college kids) that were acting very immature the entire trip. There were times where I was wishing that they would fall in, they would have deserved it!

{lookie! Whale spouts!}

{So pretty!}

Once back we we did some shopping in Darling Harbour area and then headed back to Missy's. That evening we of course had dinner at Gilroy's and then went to bed early in preparation for the next day.