Monday, December 29, 2008

England Visit Continued...

Dorian has adjusted remarkably well to life in England. He was jetlagged for the first several days, but seems to be over it now. He's been going to bed later than in California, around 10pm, but sleeping in until 10am so we'll take it. He wakes up even more more often than in California, takes shorter naps, and is nursing pretty solidly all night long. It is taking him much longer to fall asleep and is very clingy to me when he is tired. He is nursing so much it is driving me nuts and I can not wait to get him weaned. But I have to remember, everything here is new to him, he is without his normal routine, was/is jetlagged and he is all out of sorts.

Overall, he has been such a happy, little boy. Everyone keeps remarking on it. He is a little star, playing and giggling all the time. He is now treating this house as his own - making messes and getting into everything! He loves his Nana and Granta and he adores his cousins. He has loads of toys to play with here, thanks to his Auntie Han and Uncle Phil. He has a crib, booster seat (to use while eating), carseat and baby gate, all thanks to Han and Phil as well. We're so lucky to have had all the baby gear provided for us! (We brought a stroller over from the US, so we'd have one to use in the airport.)

We have tried to take walks with him, as we do every day in Oakland, but he starts crying. I don't think he likes the cold or wind, even though we get him all bundled up. It is getting colder by the minute here. When we arrived, it was actually about the same temperature as it was when we left Oakland! But an Arctic cold front is supposed to come in over the next few days and the next 2 weeks will be bitter cold -down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit at night!!!!! No forecast for snow, but we can hope!

Non-Christmasy pictures, taken over the past few days (my fave is the last pic, where he has his hand on his Granta's arm, looking so proud - we have a very similar shot of him with my dad!):

Christmas #3

We celebrated Christmas with James' mum Jenny's side of the family on Sunday, December 28th. Most of the family was present, though we were missing 5 or 6 people I believe. Jen has a huge family - she is one of 4 siblings, all of whom have children, most of whom now have children of their own.

It was quite a circus, and Dorian did really well. He only fussed a bit when he looked up and saw all the big people around him and got a little overwhelmed. He loved playing with the big kids. He kept trying to give them pieces of food, and they would then feed him in return. So sweet! I can't tell you how much I love watching my son with other children.

Christmas #2

We celebrated Christmas with James' dad Graham's side of the family on December 27th. Graham's sister Gill, her husband Roy, their two adult sons Stewart and Daniel and their sons' significant others were present, in addition to Graham's brother Rob (who was also at our house on Christmas day).

Dorian was a little charmer, walking around "talking" to everyone and eating as much chocolate as he was able to get unwrapped. He loved the two dogs, got some more fab presents, and was simply a happy camper for the several hours we were there. Jet lag was almost gone that day, and he fell asleep around 9pm UK time that night. Not bad!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Christmas Day

We woke on Christmas Day around 12pm...Dori fell asleep around 4am that night, I think. James' uncle Rob was already there when we awoke and Hannah, Phil and the boys came over as soon as they heard we had arisen. Luckily, the little boys were able to open presents and their stockings at their own house so our jetlag didn't mess up their Christmas. We sat down for a meal almost immediately - it felt a little strange eating a full Christmas roast for "breakfast" and drinking wine 20 minutes after waking but we rolled with it. Dorian went straight for the bacon-wrapped-sausages and ate 4 of them! I guess we've been depriving him of meat. He was desperate for them when he saw them on the counter and that was all he ate! It was so funny. Boy, is Jen a good cook. I always forget. Thanks for all the lovely meals, Jen!

After the first of many good meals over the next few days, we took a little break so the adults could digest and the kids could go outside for a bit. It was unseasonably warm for the UK on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day (it didn't last; it's freezing and windy now). Then we opened some presents. Dorian got the most amazing gifts this year. Wow. Lucky boy. He got dozens of board books, clothes, toys, British souvenirs, a fantastic play tunnel and tent center (from his grandparents) and more. James and I also lucked out...everyone was happy this year. After the first round of gifts, we played a game, then we opened some more. Then we played more games. The Crockers sure like to play games over the holidays - I just found out this is not a British tradition, but a Crocker one. I always assumed it was how the UK celebrated the holidays. I wonder what other Crocker family traditions I have just assumed are British traditions all these years? Anyway, what a wonderful day we had.

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve was our first full day in the UK. After Dori finally fell asleep at 5am, we woke at 12pm. Hannah and the boys (Rowan, 6, and Josh, 3) came over right away. We went for a walk and spent some time in the house - had to open a couple pre-Christmas crackers too of course.

The sweetest part about the day (and all the days since) has been the way Dorian just watches the boys. He loves the big kids and wants to do everything they do. And both Ro and Josh (especially Ro, the older one) are so good with him and love him so much. It's great that even though they live so far apart, they are still obviously going to be close with one another. I love watching them.