Zachary: 11 months

Zachary is now 11 months old!

Well this has been a month of many many first and new experiences.

Zach had a great first Easter. He enjoyed dancing to worship songs at church and of course his first Egg hunt. He knew how to pick up the eggs and put them down in the basket and did so mostly on his own.

But he enjoyed opening his Easter basket which had shiny plastic eggs with yogurt bites in them even more.

Zachary met his great grandmother the next weekend and went on a short road trip with her, my mom, and myself to my sister-in-law’s baby shower. He did well traveling and spent the weekend with family receiving plenty of attention.

At the baby shower he wanted so badly to play with the presents, gift bags, and discovered he likes balloons.

We got back on Sunday, repacked, then Luke dropped us off at the airport the next morning. Zach went on his first plane ride from Portland to LA. He explored where his mom grew up and downtown LA. He then went on another road trip to San Diego where we met up with Luke.

There we explored old town and the Gaslamp district, the zoo, and toured the USS Midway all before another plane ride home. If this seems like a quick sum-up, it is, more on this adventure and plenty of pictures to come.

Alongside this adventurous month, Zach has been learning new skills.

Zach can stand mostly on his own, but he doesn’t know that yet. He wants at least one, preferable both hands of an adult to guide him when he walks around. He loves to push items around including boxes and chairs and will cruise all over the house.

Zachary has also started pointing using his whole hand loose at the wrist to point while saying “ooh”. Recently, he has been pointing at items such as the quilt in his bedroom, celling fans, lamps and other lights.

If we ask, Zach can give us an item, emphasis on can, he will give us his hands when they need to be washed too. And he is finally saying “mama”. Which of course makes me very happy.

Zachary is testing boundaries and knows the word “no”. He likes to go right back to “no” places like the fireplace or the few exposed cords in the living room. When we guide him to a new location, he will occasionally throw a tantrum, yes I have a mini-toddler already. In turn, Zach will sometimes say “nanana” or “nonono” to food he doesn’t want, or when he doesn’t want to do something. So, we know he knows what we are saying.

We try to go out outside at least a few minutes every sunny day now so Zach can enjoy his swing. Zach went to his first park play date this last week where he mainly enjoyed the swings, but did explore the jungle gym, with a lot of help.

I can’t believe Zachary is almost one!  I only have one monthly update left! Not to worry I am still planning share big changes with Zach. But I am also looking forward to writing about food, festivals, house projects and much more.

As well as there are other things that have been happening alongside Zach’s first year that I am probably due to catch you up on too.

Settling In

We have been in our rental home in Centralia for a little over a week and it’s amazing what has gotten done in such as short amount of time.

The road trip went well.  Kira loved the car rides, rest stops, and adapted quickly to the  routine. We found several pet friendly hotel chains including Super 8 and Quality Inn that made it easier with our pet.

We arrived Sunday afternoon the 13th after five full days on the road. We got keys to the home, and met up with my mother and in-laws who helped us unpack the moving truck.

With their help, mainly Luke and John, we got the truck completely unpacked before dark on Sunday. Monday was spent organizing the boxes and unpacking the essentials. By the end of that day we had the kitchen mostly unpacked and furniture arranged in our room and the living room/dining room.

Although this home is much smaller than our Wayland home, it is still larger then the home we had in Corning, and we have enough garage space and attic room for all of our boxes. The only things that will be missed are the dishwasher and microwave. But we’ve lived without both of them before.

We gave the in-laws a tour of the area on Tuesday then they returned home. My mother stayed the rest of the week to help me organize the house. Together we were able to get the house cleaned, organize the boxes that were left, and take care of a few “new address and state” related business items while Luke started his new job.

Even though I have lived most of my life in the suburbs, the past two years of quiet country life has definitely changed me.

We are only a block or two from the college, there is a day-care around the corner, and we are only a few streets away from old downtown Centralia. All of this makes for easy access to a lot of stores, but it also increases the street traffic and noises outside. Speaking of noise, since we are in “hub city” we also hear freight trains at all hours of the day.

Again these are only temporary adjustments. In the mean time it is hard to believe we are ten to fifteen minutes away from all that we could need: restaurants, grocery stores, pharmacy, gas stations, the freeway, the hospital, Luke’s work, and we are not far from entertainment like a movie theatre, a bowling alley, mini golf, and a roller rink. Plus we are now in the same time zone as family and friends, making it easier to find time to talk and Skype.

We are beyond grateful and blessed for the help we received getting here and getting settled in, and for our new home in Centralia WA.

 

Memorial Day Flashback!

Memorial day weekend is often a time for family, BBQs and of course honoring those who have served our country. But for Luke and I it will also always signify the anniversary of our engagement. That’s right a year ago today we got engaged!

Luke and I had just graduated two weeks earlier with our Masters degrees from APU. Our many friends and family wondered if Luke might propose at our graduation BBQ that afternoon in front of everyone. Fortunately, Luke knew that this would not work for me. I wanted our engagement to be an “us” moment. I wanted us to be able to share the news with family, friends, and facebook on our terms and in our timing.

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So back to Memorial day weekend. Many times over we had been invited to Morro Bay to stay with my grandparents for the weekend.  And finally with our Masters degrees over we drove the four hours north to their beach house.

Friday we decided to take some time to ourselves. We pack up some picnic lunches and headed to Montana de Oro State Park. It was a sunny windy beautiful day. Driving through the eucalyptus trees and past the dunes we parked near a trail that followed the cliffs down to the ocean. We took a few relaxing moments to enjoy the view and walk down the trail.

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We stopped at a look-out spot where the waves crashed on large rocks on the cliff below. Luke turned to me and said he had an important question to ask me.

Now we had brought up the conversation of engagement and timing many times in the past few months. So when he asked me, “are you ready to get married?” I just had to double check what I was hearing.

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Luke joked about saying that ” cheesy line” but before he could launch into it I stopped him. He followed this up by  teasing, “I can get on one knee if you want”. I told him no. He understood that I didn’t like the attention and knows I don’t like being put on the spot so he didn’t expect and immediate response. I took a second to take in the moment. After what was probably an eternity for Luke, I finally said “You knew my answer would always be yes”.

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As you can imagine that was followed by a kiss, a twirl, and a big hug. We stood there enjoying the view and the moment until we realized that we were hogging the look-out spot. Not wanting a crowd we decided to walk on down the path and contemplate the huge step we just made towards our future.

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Now we knew that the picnic lunch in our car just wouldn’t do. So we drove to Lynn’s Easy as Pie for lunch in Cambria to have quiche and pie to celebrate.

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Luke's was raspberry rhubarb and mine was boysenberry

Luke’s was raspberry rhubarb and mine was boysenberry

We then drove back into Morro Bay and toured the Morro Bay Rock. Parking near the docks, we decided it was time to call our parents and share the news.

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When we got back to my grandparent’s house we told them the good news too. The rest of the weekend was spent looking at vintage rings online and talking about dates.