Tuesday, 20 December 2011

4 More Sleeps!

It is just 4 more sleeps till Isabel's first Christmas!!  We celebrate Christmas on the 24th in our family as is the Scandinavian way (for those that don't already know my mum is from Finland).  Everyone is coming to our place this year to eat and drink themselves silly....but this is so much more special as it is Isabel's first and my first Christmas as a Mummy!!  I am off to a bad start and had not done any shopping until yesterday so it will be the usual race around the stores the next couple of nights to get it all done.

We just had a wonderful weekend in Adelaide for my father's 60th birthday.  When we arrived it was 32 degrees so we took Issy down for her first proper swim in the ocean.  She as a little skeptical at first, but then loved splashing in the waves.

All ready for the beach

Bit cold at first

Still clinging on tight

Now loving it!

First family beach shot

With Grandad Greg

What made the weekend even more special was that Isabel got to meet her Great Grandmother for the first time....we had a lovely lunch to celebrate dad's birthday and Isabel entertained everyone.  Her new party trick is to clap and she is LOVING music and dancing.

Showing off her new party trick

With Great Uncle Rob and Great Grandmother Judy

Playing with Charlie

We have had quite a few funny (or perhaps I should say interesting) adventures with Isabel's CIs in the last month.  The first of which was when we were flying to New Zealand and we went to Sydney the night before (as we had a very early morning international flight).  After arriving at our hotel at about 10pm in the evening we realise Isabel is missing one of her processors!!!!  I go into panic mode and am searching everywhere and when we realise its not there we called our Audiologist (Yetta) from the Shepherd Centre to ask what we needed to do.  I was totally beside myself and so upset that i could have missed it.  Issy was wearing a bonnet on the plane and it must have slipped out and we didn't realise till we got to the hotel as she was asleep.  Yetta explained the process and that it was all ok and not to be too hard on ourselves.

The next morning we thought we would try our luck at the Qantas international desk to see if anyone had found the processor over at the domestic terminal.  It was a long shot, but worth a try!  AND IT TOTALLY PAID OFF!  They did find it on the plane and handed it to lost property and once we reported it they had someone bring it over to us right away.  Amazing service and I have to say the Qantas staff were so helpful and proactive in making sure we got it back before we flew.

There have been a few interesting comments of late also.  I was in the bank and the teller looked down and was admiring Isabel and then said to me "Oh how sweet, you have little Christmas earring on her!!" Hmmm.

I was then chatting the other day to a lady in mall who was commenting on how sweet it is that Isabel was wearing a bonnet and that you don't see it much anymore.  I explained Isabel has CI's and its easier to keep them on that way.  She then said "Oh really, gosh, well she looks totally normal!".  Hmmm...thank you I guess!?!

It has been a crazy year with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows....but I am so excited for this weekend to open presents with my little angel...I am sure she will probably be more interested in the wrapping paper than the gifts...but will be fun all the same.

Merry Christmas everyone!!


Monday, 5 December 2011

Happy Holidays!

I can't believe it is already December, the year has flown by so fast and I remember like yesterday frantically rushing around at work in Abu Dhabi preparing for my final event before finishing up for maternity leave...how much life has changed!!!!

Although we have not yet bought a house, we feel as if we have settled into Canberra and we are really loving it. We have met so many great people (and re-connected with a few old friends) and we really believe this is now the place we would like to build a home for our family.

Hanging out with Papa

Isabel is doing fantastically.  She has full access to sound and is babbling away.  Lots of 'Ahhh's, & 'Mmmm's and there have even been a few 'Umm-Ma's'.....which of course I think is 'Mama'...not totally convinced she quite knows what it means yet, but I am just so thankful that she is saying it regardless!

Loves her watermelon!

She is eating like a racehorse!  Breakfast of porridge and banana followed by a bottle before her morning nap.  Lunch and dinner menus include all types of veges, fish, chicken, spag bol, casseroles...the works!  She loves feeding herself also and is a big fan of vegemite toast and yoghurt.

She is sitting up very confidently while she plays with her toys and is now rocking forward to her hands and pulling herself onto her tummy and dragging herself along....wont be long till those little legs get up and going!! Unfortunately however, sleeping is still very inconsistent.  She will sleep thru one night and we think 'this is it, woohoo!!' then the next 3 nights she will stir and cry all night.  She can't quite seem to find her rhythm.  To be fair though we have been traveling quite a bit (as usual) with back to back weekends in NZ and then the coast....although its not looking like changing for a few months so for Izzy it is going to become 'routine' to have NO 'routine'.

On the plane to Auckland

Keeping her 'ears' on remains a constant challenge...she now thinks its a game to take them off and wait for a reaction from us.... we try not to react at all and instead try to distract her while we take them out of her hands and put them back on.  Occasionally I will turn around she she will be sucking on them and ill have to really give them a good wipe to get all the saliva off!  Just how splash resistant are they?!!  Hoping she will soon realise that she needs them to hear and won't want to take them off (however I am assured by other parents of kids with CIs that they are the ultimate negotiating tool in favour of the children during tantrums later!!).

The only real CI issue we have had is a few times it seems like Isabel is getting some sort of feedback or interference.  She will all of a sudden jump at every noise and then cry hysterically.  It only last for a moment and she settles as soon as I give her a cuddle, but something is giving her a real fright and I can't quite figure out what it is.  I have checked her settings on the processor remote and nothing changes, the first time it happened I was using my mobile when she was on my lap so I thought that was it, but it has happened a few more times in other situations now also.  All a bit strange, but only happened 3 times in total so will keep watching and see if I can identify what is consistent when it happens.

Isabel had her first proper beach day a few weekends ago at the south coast....she wasn't so sure about the water (it was freezing!!), but she loved the sand and the wind and ended up falling asleep on my shoulders on the walk home.

Enjoying the sand in her fingers

She has been spending a lot of time with Lyla and Jade (daughters of our good friends) which she seems to love as they dote on her endlessly and give her lots of cuddles and kisses...they are also helping toughen her up a little with the occasional over-excited push or pull!  When we were at the coast Jade took off down the hall with Isabel in her walker, her little legs peddling in the air, they somehow managed to miss all the tables and shelves and Izzy was laughing out loud while we all chased after them.

Playing with Lyla and Jade

We are so excited for the holidays which are fast approaching.  We are off to Adelaide next week, then Isabel's first Christmas and then off on our first beach holiday as a family to Queensland...will be so nice to relax for a few weeks and reflect on what has been a pretty unbelieveable year.  I can honestly say this has been the biggest roller coaster year of my life so far and most certainly a 'sliding door moment' for our family.  But fate has a funny way of getting you to where you are supposed to be.  2012 is going to be huge for us for so many reasons....I can't wait!!