Thursday, August 28, 2008

The many faces of Nathan

Nathan has been up to a lot these last few months. Most recently, he started pushing his car around standing up! He crawls all over the house and has to constantly be under our feet no matter what we are doing, yes, even when we are in the bathroom! He likes me to chase him around the house and as I'm following him on my knees, he turns around to see if I'm coming and starts crawling faster and laughing really loudly. He loves to eat whenever and whatever we're eating and spends lots of time in his high chair trying out new finger foods and spitting out ones he doesn't like. Watermelon and ham are a few of his favorites and we just discovered so are raspberries. A few days ago, I went with some friends from my ward to pick fresh fruit at a farm. We picked fresh peaches and raspberries. I put Nathan in my front carrier, and each time I picked a raspberry and put it in the carton Nathan would use his cute pudgy fingers and pick it out and eat it. He soon discovered how to pick them off the branches himself. And at the end of the activity, his face, hands, feet and clothes were covered in raspberry juice and seeds. He looked adorable! I wish I brought a camera with me, but alas, it is enough just to pack me and the baby and a lunch and a diaper bag and get us out the door. The visual is pretty great though. He has been mimicking us lately too. When we say "mama" or "daddy" he makes sounds that resembles those words. He mimics us reading to him as well. If we catch him alone with a book, he is reading to himself and making up all kinds of different words. He mimics our faces too. He started doing this face where he squinches up his nose and tightens his lips and then sticks his chin out really far- it's really funny. When we do it, he does it back at us. I can't believe he is already 10 months old- he is changing more and more each day and is so much fun!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Speidel Siblings

So it is already June! I can't believe it. I let May completely go by without posting a thing. My sister Doree came to visit at the end of April- mostly to see little Nathan, although she claims she wanted to see me too. We made sure to do one thing a day. We went to the arboretum for a picnic, to the zoo to see the elephants especially and a funny little orangutan that was sitting in the middle of a cable wire with his butt to us and only people underneath; to the Amish market for some fresh watermelon and Philly Cheese Steaks, and to Arundel Mills to do some outlet shopping of course. We also did a lot of baking and movie watching- it was quite a fun time! Sister time is the best!
My brother Jake and his family moved back to Maine after being in Guam for a year and a half, so of course Nathan and I had to take a trip to see them. Cousin Riley (just turned 3) was so excited to see Baby Nathan (BN as Jake calls him). She would always comment on his "baby hands" "baby feet" "baby nose" and baby everything. She even helped feed him and every morning would come in to our room and lay next to him. She pushed him in his new umbrella stroller, until she decided she would rather push her own cabbage patch doll. Jake put Nate's hair in a mohawk and Riley keep yelling at him to put it down- she doesn't like change. We saw some beautiful lighthouses and New England scenery. We also got homemade ice cream everyday and went to the beach. Nate loved eating and squishing the sand, but we didn't dare go in the water because it was too cold. Sanford is definitely out in the country and I enjoyed going to sleep while listening to the chirping of the bugs. I also enjoyed the Speidel's new TiVo- quite an awesome invention. Someday we'll get one. I guess we should work on getting a house first. It was really nice having all the space that goes along with a house. What a concept to have more than 1 room! I felt like I was living in the lap of luxury.
My dad and brother took us to the little Sanford airport. Airforce One actually flies into it when the Bushes come to stay in their Maine beach house. My dad got Nate a shirt that said, "My grandpa's airplane is faster than your grandpa's airplane" which of course he had to wear to the airport. We did have an unfortunate event that happened on the trip. My brother wanted to show me the PBY (a huge and very old airplane built for WW2 that he flew from Alaska). He had injured his shoulder lifting weights and was told to be careful with it, but of course as he was climbing on top of the PBY, he fell through a hatch that was on top of the plane and tried to catch himself with is bad arm. In the process, he dislocated his shoulder. It took the EMT's 3 hours to build ramps up to the airplane to transport him off of it. He was in such pain and I felt so bad for him. His arm finally went back into place after he was on morphine and his muscle was able to relax. Needless to say, that put a damper on the trip. He is doing better though, but might have surgery for it to properly heal. Poor guy!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Happy Spring!

It is so nice to be able to enjoy the new Spring weather! I am so excited that winter is officially over and we can enjoy the warm sunshine and beautiful blooming blossoms. My parents came to
visit and we went downtown to see the Cherry Blossoms. We were so excited because after living here for 2 Cherry Blossom seasons we finally got to see them in full bloom (the last two years they were already green when we had a chance to see them). Nathan took some picturesque poses for us and of course he makes the Cherry Blossoms look even better!
Another Spring activity that you can only do in DC is The White House Egg Roll. We had some really nice friends (thanks Robinsons!) spend the night the Friday night before to get tickets for them and some extra for us. Nathan, my mom, and I were able to go along with our friend Emily. We met other friends (Courtney and her baby Spencer) and church members there. They had fun activities such as Easter egg dying (we were allowed to dye one egg), egg hunting, egg rolling, and taking pictures with cartoon characters and in front of the White House of course. We mostly observed what was going on. We took some pics of Nate in his blue bunny ears with some characters, but figured he didn't really care about participating so we just watched the other kids. We did do the Egg Roll just so we could get a good picture right in front of the White House as we were standing in line. By the time we got in line, however, Nate was asleep so I participated in the Egg Roll for him and got the egg down the lawn with my spoon in 2 sweeps. It was fun, but extremely crowded! It is fun to say that we did it, but just like Time Square at New Years, I think it is something I will only do once! For more pics, see our picassa Web album, Happy Spring!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Nathan is 4 months old!

We took our sweet little Nate to the doctor for his wellness exam and he weighed in at 20 pounds, 12 ounces and is 28 3/4 inches long! He is growing like a weed physically and in personality. He loves to smile at everybody he sees and he has even started laughing. His laugh is the sweetest sound in the world. He also enjoys bouncing on my stomach as I sing to him. His favorite song is "The Ants go Marching." He also loves to look in the mirror and gets a big smile on his face every time I sing "There's A Nathan in the Mirror" ( a goofy song I made up). He likes to grab at toys that are hanging from his bouncer or his Tiny Love play mat. Sometimes it appears as if he wants to talk to the animals he is grabbing at. We have conversations a lot and I tell him about what I am eating or what I am thinking. He often responds with his coos and sometimes just with the raise of an eyebrow. He loves peekaboo and we can often get him to laugh by making goofy faces or talking or reading in very exaggerated ways. Another favorite past-time is standing. He loves to be pulled to a standing position because there is way more to see. He is very good at holding his head up and also enjoys sitting up, not quite on his own yet, but he is getting there. He does not like socks and often kicks them off his feet. If he gets one off he tries to pull the other off with the free foot. He also doesn't really like baths and gets somewhat nervous when I wash his hair or pour water on his head. He went to his first dance on Valentine's Day at our church. He loved the live swing band, the salsa music, and watching everybody dance. What can I say, he is pure joy and I love every minute of being a mom! Kissing his chubby cheeks, looking into those beautiful blue eyes, and seeing his smile that melts my heart will never get old. For more pics see our picassa web album under More Pics on the left of our blog.

Friday, January 4, 2008

A Hawaiian Christmas

Yes, it's been 2+months since we posted a blog. Andrew has been dutifully composing Nathan's birth story (soon to be posted). Hopefully, most of you got the email about Nathan's birth. He was born exactly on his due date weighing in at 10.1 pounds and measuring 22 inches! He just had his 2 month check up and now weighs 18.1 pounds and is 25 3/4 inches long! We have a very sturdy and adorable 2 month old. Recovery has been harder than I thought, but little Nathan is definitely worth it.

We were able to go to Hawaii, which really helped me feel better. I went with my parents on Dec. 11 and we made it in time to see my sister Hannah graduate from BYU-Hawaii. Andrew's sister Leilani also graduated but he had to stay and work. He came out on Dec. 18th in time for Christmas. I was able to spend a week with my family in our time share on Waikiki. It was really fun to see my brother, sister-in-law, niece, and Hannah because I hadn't seen them since last Christmas. Jake, my brother, flies for Continental and is based out of Guam for a short time. Riley, my niece, loved baby Nathan and was always concerned with his well being. She would constantly bring him a pacifier or blanket to make sure he had what he needed. Anytime we bought anything for him she would also put it right next to him to let him know it was his. She is 2 1/2 going on 14.

The sun and 80 degree weather didn't feel much like Christmas but we tried to do Christmas things like bake cookies, see the downtown lights, go shopping, and even see Santa Claus. Grandma Glidewell also came out for a short while and we were able to spend some quality time with her. It was my mom's birthday on the 14th and we all celebrated with a salmon picnic that we had on the BYUH campus. When we weren't busy with Christmas things or celebrations, we were at the beach. Little Nathan took to the water quite well. We only put him in waist deep, but he seemed pretty content to sit and enjoy the water because it cooled him off. My brother would always comment on how big he was.

When Andrew came out, we went to the North Shore to be with his family. His parents and youngest sister Leilani still live in Laie. His older sisters Kimberly and Tina were also able to come out along with Tina's new baby Emmalia and husband John. We also did Christmas festivities over there (complete with the famous cookie decorating extravaganza), but most of the time was spent taking pictures of and playing with our babies who are almost exactly a month apart. They seemed to be instant friends and whenever we sat them next to each other they cooed, smiled, kicked and were very active. We also celebrated Andrew's birthday on the 22nd and had a barbecue with some of his old friends.

We also had some spiritual moments on this vacation. My sister Hannah is going to serve a mission of for our church- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in February. Before going, she is required to take out her endowments in the temple. She did this in the Laie temple and Andrew, my dad, mom, and I as well as several of her friends were able to attend. My sister Doree babysat little Nathan. It was a wonderful experience to see my family in the temple and to watch my sister take this momentous step in her life. We also blessed Nathan. Our friends, the Murphy's, let us borrow their son's blessing outfit. The shirt looked kind of like a midriff on Nathan, but it worked. (Later, we put Emmalia in her blessing dress and took pictures- it looked kind of like a baby wedding!) Both of our families were able to be there and see little Nathan get blessed. Our fathers stood in the circle and Andrew gave a really wonderful blessing. He talked a lot about the meaning of Nathan's name and that Nathanial means "gift from God" but Nathan actually means "giver" and that he should follow Christ's example of giving service. My husband is often a very profound speaker and many people commented on what a neat blessing it was.

That day (Dec. 23rd) was also my dad's birthday so we celebrated with my family and took pictures in front of the Waikiki Christmas tree. We spent the night with them and then woke up on Christmas Eve to take a beautiful hike to Manoa Falls. It was quite an awesome experience greeting everyone with a "Merry Christmas" as we were hiking among the beautiful foliage of Hawaii in 80 degree weather. I kept saying "this is the life!" We then drove back to the North Shore to celebrate Christmas Eve and Christmas morning with Andrew's family. It seemed like a lot of back and forth but Andrew and I were able to enjoy each other's company and the beautiful scenery of the drive. That night we lit the luminarias and put them along the driveway. We also went to PCC (the Polynesian Cultural Center) to listen to some festive holiday music Hawaiian style and do some shopping. We read the Christmas story, put on our new PJ's and hopped into bed.

The next day we opened some nice gifts (Nathan slept in my arms through all of the present opening). We also had a nice family lunch together. Then Andrew and I were off again to see my family. We opened presents there and had another nice meal. That evening all of us kids, including Leilani, were given a gift to see Cirque du Soleil. It was Hawaii's version of it and after we got over the bad Elvis impersonator, the show was quite extravagant and on the edge of your seat kind of entertainment. My favorite was the lady that could change clothes in the blink of an eye. The next day we had to say goodbye to Jake, Ali, Riley, and Ali's parents who were there for Christmas as well. Sadly our vacation was coming to a close. Andrew and I got to celebrate one more event- our anniversary. We got a gift card to the Cheesecake Factory and enjoyed a nice meal among the palm trees of Waikiki. What a wonderful trip! We were able to catch up with old friends, celebrate graduation, birthdays, and our anniversary and most of all make memories with both our families! Now, back to reality. Mele Kalikimaka and a Happy New Year! For more pics of our trip, check out the "Christmas in Hawaii" link on the left of our blog.