Thursday, March 26, 2009

Our California Vacation

Well, our trip to California has come and gone and I am just now getting a chance to write about our vacation! We had a wonderful time, but were completely exhausted from vacationing with a baby!! Even just packing for Jackson took forever because we had to plan for every what-if with extra outfits, burp cloths, food, medicine. And then it was a mess planning to take milk on the plane and I of course forgot to take the liquids out of the bag before it went through the x-ray machine, so they had to search (mess up my organization) and do special tests on the liquids greater than 3 oz.

Jackson did fairly well on the plane, only getting fussy a time or two. On our second flight, Jackson was having a really hard time while the plane was descending and the flight attendant brought us some apple juice to dip his pacifier in and Jackson loved it and stopped fussing immediately! Unfortunately, Jackson didn't adjust as well to sleeping in a new place as he did to traveling by plane. We really didn't get much sleep as Jackson woke up nearly every hour or two, and because of the time change, he was up and ready to play around 6:00am.

On Thursday, Grandpa, Derek, Jackson and I toured the Jelly Belly factory in Fairfield. I don't even like jelly beans, but it was just SO interesting to see the process of how they are made! I had no idea it takes between 9-21 days to make a jelly bean. After the tour, Grandpa took us up to Lake Berryessa. It was a beautiful drive in the Califronia countryside. On our way back, we drove by tons of orchards. I was bummed that the trees weren't in bloom, but it was still so neat to see!

The next day, we all drove down to Vallejo to catch a ferry over to San Francisco. Once there, we then got aboard another ferry to travel over to Alcatraz- what an neat place!! I loved the audio tour; I think its a real creative way to make the history of the prison so interesting! I was bummed that we couldn't finish the whole tour, but all of us were so worn out that we just needed to go home.
On Saturday, we left Grandpa at home and Derek, Jackson and I drove down to Muir Woods, a national forest, to check out some of the California Redwoods. What a site to see, but man was it chilly!! We really enjoyed our walk through the park and someday, we hope to get back when we aren't pushing a stroller so we can make our way up some of the "off road" trails.

We then headed back down to San Francisco and drove over the Golden Gate Bridge. We drove around the street of San Fran for awhile and drove up Lombard street and I really thought we were literally start falling backwards because the street was so steep. Once we got to the top, we then drove down the windy street-- Derek wasn't impressed. We headed for Pier 39 and visited there for awhile, but it was just soooo windy and Jackson was upset that we left to go home after about an hour or two.

Sunday, we visited Grandpa's church. Jackson really turned on the charm and impressed all of Grandpa's friends. In the afternoon, we helped pack Grandpa up and then headed to the outlet malls, which were practically in his backyard. Derek even helped me pick out a new purse and we got Jackson some sunglasses.

All in all, we had a good vacation. Traveling with a baby was definitely an adventure and now that I have had about a week to recover, I might even consider doing it again but not for a loooonng time! Well, we are headed for Springfield this weekend, but at least there isn't a plane ride involvd! I am so glad we were able to go out to visit Grandpa before he moved back here. But I'm more excited to have Grandpa here just a few minutes away so we will get to see him more!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Jackson, Biology, Oscars, California

Our little fella turned four months this weekend! I just can't believe how much he has changed in just the past few weeks. He is playing (bonking his head) with toys, talking up a storm, and bouncing like crazy in his Jumparoo. He started sleeping through the night, from about 10pm-8am, about three weeks ago. I sent out an update email to some family last week bragging on this new feat and since that night, Jackson has been waking up three or four times a night. Derek says I jinxed it. Per the doctors suggestion, we started feeding Jackson cereal this week. The kid loves it! This increases the amount of laundry and the number of baths that Jackson takes!

I took Jackson to get his 4 month pictures taken last week. The little stinker will smile and giggle up a storm until you get a camera in front of his face. He would rather stare at the big black thing to figure out what it is! We did end up with a super cute picture. Isn't this kid just adorable!?!?!
More Pictures

I am almost half way through my class this semester. This is a tough one for me. I love Psychology, but more on the social and personal side as opposed to the biological stuff, which is what I am taking. When I read the textbooks for my other classes (Developmental Psych, Mental Disorders, Career Counseling, etc...) I read through it once and it all makes sense. Reading this Biological Bases of Behavior book... blah! I can read and read about dendrites, axons, basal ganglia... and I still don't really get it. Lying in bed at night I go over the flowchart of the Central Nervous System hoping it will stick with me one of these days!!!

I can't believe we got so much snow on Friday night... and it really caught me off guard! I try really hard not to watch the news (it is overall depressing and often keeps me awake at night) and so I never know what the weather is going to be like. I'll leave the house in just a t-shirt because it is 70 degrees and by the time I am on my way home, I'm freezing because it is sleeting outside! I am just so ready for spring to be here.

Last week, we had some friends over for an Oscar Party. We filled out ballots marking who we thought would win. I have won for the past three years, but lost this one. I still did pretty good. I am hoping to get out and see Slumdog Millionaire sometime. I don't really know what to expect... the past couple of years we watched the Oscar winning movies and weren't all to impressed. I do have to say that I was very entertained watching Hugh Jackman dance and sing. I think he put on a great show!!

We will be taking our first family vacation to California in a couple weeks. I am so excited-- I've never been to northern California. I went to visit a friend in San Diego over Thankgiving Break a few years back. This time we are flying in to Sacramento to visit Derek's grandpa before he moves back here! We have plans to visit San Francisco and to check out some of the giant Sequoia trees out there. I am a little anxious traveling with Jackson, like I don't quite know what I'm getting myself into. Feel free to share any advice!


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