Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Rest of November

Other than the wedding and moving and Gabe's birthday, the rest of November was pretty typical...

...with a few excetpions. Gabriel had to get used to having a pet in the home. McKay kept our cat, Dorothy Mae ("Dot"), and I was a little apprehensive about it. I didn't know if Gabe would be allergic and what if Dot was mean to him or scratched him or something? Well, it turns out Gabriel isn't allergic to cats or at least not Dorothy. She is really great with Gabriel and has never so much as swatted at him! They are very curious about each other and in the rare times she allows him within a few feet of her, he usually just squats and stares at her with an occasional poke or prod. We are trying to teach him to "be soft" with the kitty... As you can see, the cat's safety zone is on the other side of the baby gate!!

McKay's mom watches Gabriel for us while I'm at work and McKay is at school. They are bonding really well! Gabe loves going to Grandma-ma's house to play with toys and watch The Price is Right and Sesame Street.

My brother's girlfriend had a baby girl who now shares a birthday with Gabriel! She is not biologically my brother's baby, but he is taking a daddy role with her, so we see her as family! Her name is Paisley.

Gabriel had his first Library visit in November. I think a kid can never have to many books and it's never too early to read to them and get them interested. We meandered over to the childrens' side of the Provo Library (which is pretty freaking awesome!!) and I let him pick out an armful of board books! Here he is with one of his picks.

This past Thanksgiving was Gabriel's second, but it was the first one where he got to eat thanksgiving dinner!! We gave him a little bit of everything and he loved it!

That's pretty much it for November 2010. Slowly but surely getting caught up!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Gabriel's First Birthday!!

After the move and all the traveling and the wedding (though small) and unpacking and putting together a house, I was stressed and at the end of my rope! I wanted to just relax, but I couldn't--Gabe's first birthday was just around the corner. Luckily, I had planned ahead and ordered most of the party stuff from Oriental Trading before I left Hawaii. I also got the invitations mailed out before I left.

We decided to go with Hawaiian tradition and throw a "First Luau" for Gabriel's birthday since he was born in Honolulu (and I consider him kama'aina keiki). In ancient times, the first birthday was a big deal and a huge milestone since a lot of babies didn't live that long (illness, disease, etc.). In keeping with Hawaiian luau tradition, I made kalua pork (which turned out friggin' DELICIOUS) and served it with Hawaiian king rolls, mangoes and pineapple with li hing powder. We did a tropical fish and beach monkey theme (the truth? I thought they were both cute and couldn't decide which decorations and party favors to get, so I did both...) and showed Lilo and Stitch for the kiddies. I played Hawaiian music (thank you, Pandora!!) in the background while kids played with balloons and parents mingled and ate.

I was running around like crazy the whole time trying to direct traffic, cut up fruit, take pictures, fill drinks, organize goodie bags and -oh yeah- the cakes weren't frosted or decorated. I was going crazy! Luckily Jessie's awesome husband Geoff and my amazing brother Adam jumped in and helped cut up the rest of the fruit. I got the cakes frosted and covered in sprinkles and threw a candle on the one I made for Gabriel to destroy. TIME FOR CAKE EVERYONE!! Everyone listens when you've got cake. We started by singing Happy Birthday, of course, but the candle wasn't my rush to get over to the cultural hall, I forgot the lighter. And the backup matches. Shoot, I would have settled for flint and steel...oh well!! I shrugged and went with my wedding day mentality when certain things didn't go as planned "Everything happens for a reason. If it won't matter in five years, it doesn't matter now." I'm fairly certain that Gabriel will not remember his first birthday--much less, the fact that his number 1 candle wasn't lit.

For his first birthday, I wanted one thing.
I wanted what every mom wants. [He better DIVE into that freaking cake and make a ginormous mess out of it. There better be chocolate frosting everywhere. The pictures...will be priceless.]

Well guess what?! My little man delivered!! I was overjoyed. Seriously. (My niece wanted nothing to do with her cake and she most definitely did NOT want to get messy....what a girl....)

Thank you, Gabriel, for making my birthday wish come true! (Did I mention his birthday party was actually held on my birthday? Yeah. His birthday was three days later on a Tuesday.) Mamma loves you!!

After the cake was devoured and the pork was pretty much gone, we cleaned and packed up and headed home. We didn't have Gabe open presents at the party because he takes forEVER to open presents. I don't think he gets the concept yet. We decided it would be best to just wait until we got home. He made out with a pretty nice haul though!

All in all, it was a fun day! I can't believe I've had my little boop for over a year now!! Thank you to EVERYONE who made his first birthday even more special!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A hair cut and a wedding

I had hoped to be able to hold off getting Gabe's first hair cut until it was long enough for me to get a decent sample for his baby book, but the wedding was coming up and I wanted him to look nice for pictures so I broke down and took him the Marinello. His hair was growing over his ears and collar and it just looked a little too shabby.

I was a little worried that he would hate getting his hair cut and he would raise hell and make it difficult for them to do a good job. I was wrong. He was super chill! He just sat there and let them snip away! The only thing was that he kept trying to get a look at what she was doing, so he turned his head a few times to peek at the scissors. Other than that, he sat super still and was very patient--what a good kid!! All of the ladies at Marinello were impressed and they all mooned over him while he got his first hair cut!!

The 'before' shot

 He behaved himself so well!!
 Checkin' out the cut...

The next day, McKay and I went to the courthouse and got remarried. We decided to keep it simple since we already did the big "to do" wedding the first time. Now we're officially a family!!

Gabe looked so handsome in his little suit!!

 Great shoes. Seriously.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

New best buds and Gabe's first winter

I gotta tell you, finally getting back to Utah was such a relief!! Not that I didn't LOVE my time in Hawaii and in Yuma, because I really did. It was just so nice to know that I'd be back in familiar territory, dealing with weather and plants and animals that I'm used to, and with my sweetheart (McKay)!

Which brings me to one of my biggest worries coming back to Utah: How would Gabriel and McKay get along? I wasn't sure how things would be in that area and it kind of stressed me out. Turns out I had nothing to fear! McKay and Gabriel bonded instantly and have been inseparable--best buds since the second they met!! Here are a handful of my favorite daddy-son moments in November:

See what I mean? I had nothing to worry about! Whew!!

My other big concern? How would Gabe get along with WINTER? I mean, real winter. He had never experience cold weather before. The coldest it ever got in Hawaii was maybe in the 60's... So one of the first things we did was get him his first set of winter gear!

First thing's first: Get a coat!! He wasn't too thrilled about having to wear a coat everywhere...

Next, we had to find him a winter hat. Enjoy the short montage:

I really loved the grey one with the snowflakes, but when we went back to buy it, they were all gone! So we went with our second choice--the monkey hat! It came with a cute little set of matching mittens too! A day or so after getting his winter gear, we had our first REAL chance to test the quality of Gabe's new winter gear at our neighbor kid's championship football game (which he won--Go Morgan!!). It passed with flying colors! Sure, he may have resembled the kid on A Christmas Story, not being able to put his arms down. And, yeah, we have gone a little overboard bundling him up (Long-sleeved onesie, warm footie pajamas, a blanket wrapped around him, a blanket/sack style zip up pajama thing over that, a coat, mittens and a hat)....but hey! The kid was toasty warm!

Next, we take a trip to Marinello for Gabriel's first hair cut and then we're off to the courthouse for the reuniting of two soul mates! Don't miss it!