Saturday, December 7, 2013

Braving the Border

Today, we went to Sawyer's 4 month doctor's appointment. We live in mainland China and his doctor is in Hong Kong, which means we have to cross the border. We need to leave China and enter Hong Kong. Normally, we take a ferry which is easy and stress-free.  We didn't think we would make it to our appointment on time if we took the ferry, so we braved the border. Looking back, I think we were a bit crazy to go through the border, but now we have another interesting China story to add to our list. We got to the border at 8:05, we finally got through and into Hong Kong at about 9:30, eeek! It was madness. There was a lot of pushing, line cutting and even running...

On our way to the border.

 Where we were stuck.

Sawyer slept through most of it. 

See all of those people waiting in the background??

Our line. Yep, true story. 

Kurt carrying Sawyer in HK.

Sawyer did great with his shots and was a trooper all day. We learned that he is about 16.5 pounds and 25 inches long...that explains why my back kills after I carry the little guy around for a while ;)

After that whirlwind of a day, I am off to bed...hallelujah!  

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas Spirit

I saw this version of Little Drummer Boy on Facebook and I fell in love with it. Totally put me more in the Christmas spirit (if that's even possible).

I've also been playing Christmas music non-stop while my second graders work for the past oh... I don't know... three weeks?! (don't judge...) A Very She & Him Christmas has the best songs ever! 

They are probably getting WAY sick of my holiday playlist, but that's what they have to put up with when they have me as a teacher. 

Things I'm most looking forward to about being in the U.S. for Christmas:

  1. The smell of a REAL Christmas tree (ahhh... pine, I can ALMOST smell it now)
  2. Snow (no needed explanation)
  3. Home-cooked Christmas food & deserts (We've gone to nice brunches the past two years for Christmas in Thailand & Cambodia which have been AMAZING, but it's just not the same as having special, family Christmas dishes)
  4. Taking Sawyer to see Santa
  5. Christmas lights (there's a drive through light display that we will definitely go to...largest in WI!)
  6. Christmas drinks at Starbucks... mmmm
and most of all...
Spending time with my family and friends! :) 

There was a book sale at our school today, which is a pretty deal since buying books in China is not an easy task. I couldn't resist getting little man something, so I bought him the book, Henry's Holiday.

Oh my word, it is the cutest book. It is from the UK, so you might not be able to purchase it easily in the U.S. It's about this baby penguin named Henry, who is too cold. So he decides to jump on a cruise ship and finds himself on a tropical island. But, he gets too hot, feels miserable, and lonely on the island (he misses his mommy). He ends up swimming all the way back home and realizes that "the grass is always greener on the other side." My favorite part is in the end, 

"And when he cuddled Mummy Penguin, he felt warm all over, and inside as well." 

So clearly, this book had to find its way home with me. 

What are some of your favorite holiday books and holiday songs? 

I'll leave you with a few photos of our past two Christmas' abroad... 

Christmas 2011- Chiang Mai, Thailand


Kurt's parents & us

 Elephant Sanctuary 

Cambodia Christmas 2012 
(I was pregnant with Sawyer, he was just a little bean then!)

At Raffles for brunch on Christmas

Angkor Wat

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Sawyer 4 Months

I cannot believe that my baby boy is 4 months old today! Seriously... mommas aren't joking when they say "time flies." This is my first monthly post and I hope to continue them until he turns one. This was the EXACT day last year that I took a pregnancy test and discovered we were expecting our little man. I found the chalkboard monthly labels here and it is such an easy way to keep track of Sawyer's monthly pictures. I plan to make some sort of collage and frame them when he turns one! 

Dear Sawyer, 

Has it really been four months already?! I remember when we brought you back from the hospital and you were this tiny peanut. You amaze me more and more everyday. You are so curious about the world around you and love to take walks outside, especially in the baby carrier. You try to put everything you get your hands on in your mouth... believe it or not, you even tried to put your big, furry brother, Oliver, in your mouth! Luckily, he's a good sport and just sat there and took the abuse. You're also a big drooler, there is drool EVERYWHERE! If you're laying on your play mat, you'll leave a puddle of drool behind. My favorite part of my days are when I'm holding you and you glance up at me, giving me the sweetest smile and then bury your head in my arms. The other day before daddy was going to give you a bath, he was getting you undressed and blew on your tummy, you started laughing and squealing with delight. Your daddy kept doing it and you just kept on laughing. Your laugh is definitely my new favorite sound in the entire world! You are also quite the chatter box. Usually between 5-6 am, you start babbling to yourself about who knows what? Daddy and I joke that you are our little alarm clock...if only I could press the snooze button on you sometimes (hehe). You've been rolling from your tummy to your back, it's very entertaining because you surprise yourself when you do it. Grandma G actually saw you flip from your tummy to your back for the first time on Skype (you're such a show-off).  I think that you are going to roll from your back to your tummy very soon because you keep lifting your legs high in the air and I will find you stuck on your side. We have your four month check-up this weekend in Hong Kong and I am excited to hear how you've grown, but I'm also dreading it because that means you get shots and that makes my heart hurt to see you in pain. Daddy and I love you so much little man! :)



Sunday, December 1, 2013

Sawyer's Christmas Wishlist

I just put together some things that Santa will be bringing Sawyer for Christmas this year. Since we live in China, I tried to think of some practical things that he will be able to use from now-June (when we go back to the states). I also have to keep in mind that we don't have unlimited suitcase room (although a girl can dream... ) 

1. OXO Tot Baby Blocks Freezer Storage Container- I think this will be handy to have since we'll be making Sawyer's baby food to freeze and grab these when we need to feed him.  
2. Lamaze Toy, Mortimer The Moose - Sawyer has this octopus by Lamaze and is obsessed with him, so I figured his octopus needs a new friend! 
3. A Book of Sleep- Love adding books to his collection, especially when it has to do with sleep! 
4. Dino Sleep Footed PJ's- There's nothing sweeter then boys who love dinosaurs and these PJ's are so stinkin' cute! I got an awesome deal on them during GAP's Black Friday sale.
5. Leather Baby Moccasins-  I couldn't resist these adorable charocal grey moccasins for little man. They are 15% off through Dec. 2nd 
6. Boon Squirt Silicon Dispensing Spoon-  I've heard great things about this and I think it will come in handy when he starts eating "real" food. 
7. Plan Toy Pull Along Snail- I love "classic" wooden toys and I think this will be a great addition when Sawyer starts to walk. 
8. Make My Day Silicone Bib- This bib can easily be washed off in between feedings in the sink.... it's going to be a staple during Sawyer's meals. 
9. Personalized Baby's First Christmas Ornament-  I was so excited when the etsy seller said she could create a Hong Kong ornament for Sawyer. I can't wait to see how it turns out! 

Ready for Christmas Break

I did it, I started a blog...FINALLY! I hope this can be a place where I can share the pieces of our life here in China. 

The countdown to Christmas break has officially begun! There are 13 school days, or 17 more "regular" days until we fly back to the USA and introduce Sawyer to the States. We get about two and a half weeks off of school and we haven't been back to the USA since summer of 2012 since we had to stay here this past summer (me being so pregnant and all). I would be lying if I said I wasn't nervous about flying 15+ hours with a four month old, but I know that at the end of the day, I get to see my family and friends and they will FINALLY be able to meet Sawyer, which is SO worth it. Christmas is also my absolute favorite holiday (Halloween is a close second) and even though I love traveling to tropical places during the past two Christmas breaks (Thailand & Cambodia), it's just not the same as watching the beautiful snow fall, smelling REAL Christmas trees, and spending time with family. 

This weekend, I did some damage online shopping, so many great Black Friday deals! My plan is to have all/most of my shopping done so when I get back to the States, I can relax and stroll around the mall for fun, instead of frantically trying to buy everyone presents while recovering from jet-lag. Today, I thought it would be a good idea to take a family Christmas photo to send out for holiday was a bit ambitious. In the end we didn't get a "perfect" photo, but we did get some entertaining ones! :) 

Did you do any Black Friday shopping? Are you sending out Christmas cards/photos this year?