Wednesday, July 30, 2008

All right, I was just emailing my sister-in-law and have decided it's time for a parenting confession:

I am a sleep nazi.

No, not in the "Baby Wise" philosophy that subscribes to exact nap times and leaving baby in the crib (crying or not) for whole assigned nap time.

However, I have fully bought into the "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child" research that connects poor sleep habits to behavior/attention and health problems later in life. As a consequence, Owen doesn't miss naps. In fact, I realized that since we established a nap routine around 3-4 months of age, Owen has NEVER MISSED A NAP. Occasionally, a nap takes place in the car or in the backpack carrier (where he sleeps remarkably well). Occasionally the naps are short. BUT, we have NEVER SKIPPED A NAP. What would happen?

In addition, we have never kept him up late for some sort of special event.

This comes to light because we got tickets to go see the Huskies play in Eugene over Labor Day Weekend. We've been totally excited to take Owen to his first Husky game. Then... we just found out the game isn't until 7 PM. The thought of keeping him up 3-4 hours past his normal bed time totally freaks me out. What am I so worried about? It's only one day.

See - sleep nazi! Repeat to self: It's only one day, it's only one day, it's only one day...

Monday, July 21, 2008

Know anyone that wants to buy a truck? Scott posted his truck on Craigslist to see if anyone will show some interest. Not a lot of truck buyers these days, but we are in Central Oregon, so there's a chance.

Scott spent Saturday afternoon getting the cleaned up for pictures, and Owen got to "help" pull in in and out of the garage. It's no secret that this boy loves anything with wheels - I wish I had the camera when he was steering on Scott's lap!

Our Days

I'm going to a work conference at the end of the week, so Owen and I played hooky today and enjoyed a rare Monday away from work and "school." Granted, everyone at work and daycare knew we weren't coming in, and I did a couple hours of work during Owen's naps, but it still felt like a special treat. I found myself paying closer attention and savoring my time with this growing kiddo. He's so fun!

Our typical days involve three "activity times" - early morning, midday, and after nap. The morning goes fast, and sometimes the afternoon seems to drag (especially if Owen doesn't nap well), but today we did a lot of laughing and had plenty of reasons to get out of the house. This is what Owen's days are like at 1 year old...

Up at 6:30ish
6:30-9:00: Get ready for the day, eat breakfast, quiet play time around the house Today Owen got up pretty early, so we took the dog for a long walk along the canal. Great to get outside and move (for mom!) and good low-key time for Owen in the stroller.

9:00-10:30: First Nap

10:30-1:00: Midday - Run errands or wreck havoc around the house while mom's trying to work, lunchtime, at home play or water play on the deck.
Today we went to the grocery store (Owen loves riding in the cart), and Owen had a blast after lunch playing with legos, climbing - around boxes, up and down stairs, over and under his toys - and pushing his Tonka truck around and around and around.

1:00-2:30 or 3:00: Second nap. Hooray - he slept well today!

3:00-5:30: Afternoon - This can be our most challenging time if I don't have a plan. Toys at home get boring by the end of the day, so we HAVE to get out of the house or risk a lot of "no" as Owen starts gravitating to the off-limits areas (dog dish, cat litter box, and garbage cans). We've been visiting parks around Bend, going to the pool, or going to Shannon's for playgroup. Today we ran errands and then hit a new park. Right as we drove up, it started raining - thunderstorm - but I figured, "Why not? This kid has Seattle genes in his body somewhere." We spent an hour playing in the rain, laughing on the swings, toddling around the different surfaces, and trying to climb UP a wet slide. Silly and oh so fun. I love that having a kid lets me be a kid too.

Last week at playgroup, we did finger painting, and then let the kids toddle around the park. Shannon had the inflatable tunnel out, and I managed to get my camera at just the right time: 5:30 or 6:00: Dinner Then it's play at home (hopefully with Dad) until 6:30 when we do story, bath, bottle, bed. Owen's usually in bed around 7:00.

I think Owen sleeps well because he is in constant motion when he's awake.
Between naps and meals, the play time isn't long, but he makes the most of it and can run himself ragged in 45 minutes.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Catching Up - 4th of July

FOUR new posts today. I got a little behind recovering from that stomach flu and then enjoying a busy 4th of July weekend with family celebrating Owen's first birthday. Be sure to check out all the pictures is the posts below.

We had all the family here for 4th of July weekend. Ryan and Sara brought baby Calla who has grown so much since we saw her at Memorial Day. She's pulled out of her collicky period, but Sara is still doing some diet experiments to help her upset tummy. I guess reflux runs in our family. Sorry baby Calla! Sara and Calla did get the sling figured out over the weekend and we got to see some of Calla's beautiful personality - smiling, squealing, and kicking around - especially first thing in the morning.
On the 4th of July, we went to the Pet Parade downtown. You have never seen so many dogs all in one place - Owen was in his own personal heaven! I love the parade, anyone can be in it. Just bring your pet or stuffed animal. You can tell the kids (and some adults) love being the center of attention. The parade even had a frog named Sam, a handful of ponies, and two cows!

Through it all, I kept remembering how last year we were at the pet parade in the blazing heat - no idea that we would be welcoming Owen into the world the very next day. After the parade this year, we stopped briefly at the 4th of July festival and Owen got his first tattoo - patriotic to the core, that kid. =)

Other things: Jeff made a great batch of Paella on Thursday evening. Jeff and Ethel finally checked out Alpenglow - our favorite breakfast place. The boys all went golfing EARLY Saturday morning while Sara, Ethel, and I made enough cupcakes to feed an army.

What a weekend!

He's One!

My baby is one! This is very exciting and a bit surreal to me. Where has the year gone? I read somewhere that, "When Mothering, the days are long, but the years are short." How true. I will admit that there have been days in the last year when I felt like we were just killing time until the NEXT thing (nap, lunch, bottle, etc), but we also have had so many moments to laugh and enjoy the kid Owen is becoming.

What is Owen like at one year old?
Fun, fun, fun!

He is cruising all over the place - truly toddling these days. Pushing off the furniture and taking tiny steps across the room. He can cross some pretty big distances, and even squat down to pick up a toy. Owen can also climb up a full flight of stairs. Not get back down, and not without one of us behind him every step of the way, but it's pretty impressive to watch him pull his little body up those steps. Owen loves the water - swimming at the pool, playing at a friend's house in the kiddie pool, the bath each night, even a bucket of water on the deck - they all make him so happy. In fact, he keeps crawling out our sliding door to try and get out to our kiddie pool - even though it's empty.

The thing that I am loving the most about right now is that Owen makes himself laugh. The other day, he climbed into a produce box and then sat their laughing at what he'd done. Same thing crawling around the kiddie pool. He cracks himself up!

Yes, those would be "temptation melons" shipped in that box. Great name!

The other day,
Owen is now 19 lb, 4 oz. He's moved up to "above the 5th percentile." That's my boy. He's a good eater, so maybe he'll keep creeping up the curve at every visit.

OWEN HAS OUTGROWN HIS REFLUX! Fabulous. He took his last official dose of medicine on July 1. He's really been doing better since April 1, but it took a long time to wean him off the meds. I admit that back in February/March, it seemed like he would never be "bib free' and I had visions of a 3 year old running around the playground spewing on the other kids. Thank goodness he has grown out of it, just like the doctor predicted. My clothes are (mostly) clean, and, more importantly, I'm sure he's much more comfortable.

Two things I was told at Baby Showers that are true, true, true:

"Get ready to love something more than you ever thought possible." (You're right Colleen)

"You may not be the best mother, but you will be the best mother for Owen." (Thanks Melissa)

I really feel that this is true. The world does a great job of making us question our ability as parents, but I'm thankful for friends and family who have encouraged us at every step that we are doing the best for Owen.

We love you Owen - we are so lucky to have you as our son. I can't imagine what fun and adventure the next years will bring.


As an extension of Owen's Birthday weekend, he was baptized at Cascade Covenant Church on July 6th. Pastor Scott did a great job of making it a special event. We're such a small church, that every baptism, dedication, or other special event gets full attention. Scott (dad) lead worship that day, both our families were there, and we got to personalize the ceremony to our own family.
The verse we chose for Owen was Psalm 63:1-4. "O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry land where there is no water. I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and glory. Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, an in your name I will lift up my hands." (NIV) It is our hope that Owen would grow to live into those words and seek the Lord for himself.

Getting baptized. In the Convenant church, we will do either infant or believer baptism, depending on what the family desires. As Pastor Scott explained, believer baptism looks backward at what God has done and the choices a person has already made. Infant baptism looks forward to a time when the child will make their own choice to follow the lord.

Our church has this great tradition after infant dedications or baptisms. Pastor Scott carries the child around and everyone puts out their hand in prayer for the little one. We also let all the kids come sit in front to get a great view of the baptism. Owen did great being carried around. The song we chose for this time was "Hope for Morning" by Christopher Williams. The same song that Scott sang at our wedding. Great words of our promise to one another, our promise to Owen as his parents, and God's promise to us as his people: "I promise you that I will always love you the same...let my gentle spirit give you the wings to soar..."

This event was more emotional that either of us expected. Scott and I, and many at church, shed some tears. We are so blessed to be raising Owen in this caring community.

First Birthday Party

Here are a few pictures from Owen's first birthday party. We had a barbecue at the new park near our house. Tons of food, great friends and family who have supported us over this last year, and Owen LOVED, LOVED, LOVED his cupcake!

Owen and our other friend Kaden (popular name!) playing with the musical puzzles from Nana.

The party scene - Kaden is racing for his share of the cupcake, but he needs to wait 2 more months for his birthday...

Loving the cupcake - he ate the whole thing faster than I've seen him eat anything else!

That's our boy!