Wednesday, July 14, 2010

New Blog

I am announcing that I am starting a new blog. While I hate to leave behind my blogspot blog, I have made the decision to join my husband in switching to Posterous. It is sad, but good at the same time, and I have listed the reasons below, in case you are interested. The important information, is that if you want to subscribe to my new blog, you may do that very easily. Just go to the right side of my new blog page and click "Subscribe to this blog." You will receive e-mails every time I post.

The new blog can be found at:

The reasons I love my blogspot (this) blog:
  • It can be personalized easily with Max and Canaan's picture up top.
  • Blogspot has pretty themes- this green one on the sides, with green print is fun and they have many different themes to choose from.
  • It was here I got my first taste of blogging.
The reason I am changing to Posterous:
  • It is SOOOO Easy to post. All I have to do is send an e-mail to my new blog with the pictures I want posted as well as the text. The blog automatically formats all my pictures and posts my text for me. Since half of the work on doing my blog on this blog (blogspot) is that it takes so long to resize and upload pictures and arrange them so they don't look weird with the text, switching blogs is going to make it so much easier. I am hoping that motivates me to post more.
Basically, I am trying to simplify my life in every way I can. While I don't want to completely do away with blogging, since it is such a great way to share our lives with family and friends, and keeps a great record for me of our lives, changing blog sites is helping in this area. Life recently has been too busy for me, with two precious, but stinker boys to keep me busier than I've been. Raising them is my main job and such a joy, but it takes lots of time and energy, especially at the ages and stages they are in now. I love it, and want to continue to love it. And it is my priority, and I want it to continue to be that way. So, I am getting rid of a few things in my life that I don't need and simplifying other things. I know you all out there have been there at some point in your lives and understand. So, I hope you enjoy the new, simplified me and my blog. Come on over and check us out. Just click on the link below!!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Ukrainian Snow and a Question

I know I've posted about this before, but in the spring, there are times it looks like it has snowed because of all the cottonwood trees that are here! The other day, the boys and I happened out to the playground and there was "poox" everywhere. Katya recently asked me what I call "poox" in English and I had no answer for her. Then she said, well what do you tell Canaan it is when you talk to you in English? I told her I used the Russian word! The Russian word is actually the word for down or fluff. So, my question to you is: does anyone know what we call all that white stuff that flies around in the air when there are cottonwoods or poplars around? If you do, let me know.
Anyway, I had Dougle bring the camera over to take pictures. At one point, the wind swirled all of it around the play ground and in the air and Canaan exclaimed, "It is SNOWING!" Well, not quite, but close.
Hope you enjoy the pictures of the boys and the "poox."

The first pic is not a good one, but the best I could get showing the snow swirling in the air. You can kind of see it on the trees. There is another pic below of Canaan showing of one of his excercises he is learning at gymnastics. (It is the one of him holding onto the bars and pulling his feet up- not very straight, but what he can do!) Also one of Canaan checking out the ground, because he is getting more interested in bugs these days. THe one of the boys in front of a story picture is at the playground too. They often draw little story pictures on walls near where kids play. And if you see Max's big bruises on his forehead and his cheek, he is getting them all the time these days. He is a bit of a daredevil and a bit of a clutz too. Just a growing baby boy!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Max Video

Here is a video of Max signing and talking. He does about as much signing (close to the real signs) as he does talking. He is just not my talkative one. Here is what we managed to get him to say.

NOTE!!! PAY CLOSE ATTENTION to how he says "UP." It is right in the first 10 or 20 seconds, right after he comes out from walking behind Mom (my mom). Look at his little mouth! It is sooooo adorable. "Max, you are awesome," as his Uncle David would say (who is about his favorite person right now). I love watching him say it so much!! Don't miss it!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Max- 15.5 Months Old

Wow! It has been SOO LONG since I've posted much about the boys and how they've been growing. Just stuff like what Max is doing (he is FINALLY walking!) and how tall Canaan is now, etc.

So, for you who LOVE my kids so much to read it all, here it is. For the rest of you, maybe you should check back later for more "interesting" stuff!

PS. I wrote this about 2 weeks ago and wanted to write about Canaan before posting, but it hasn't happened. So before this gets too out of date, I'll post this. Hopefully one on Canaan will come soon!

Max is definitely the second child. As much as I hate that it has happened, I haven't blogged about as much about him and haven't kept up with his calendar as much as I did with Canaan. ANd, before I begin, (and I know I've said this over and over), but my two boys are so DIFFERENT!! I wasn't expecting twins or anything, but I did expect more similarities than what I see. They are the same in a few lack of hair they have, or....that is it! They are just different it about everything. Which I am learning to love and appreciate more each day. One day it won't surprise me, I guess, at how differently they do and handle everything!

AGE: 15.5 months
HEIGHT: 29 inches (about 2 inches shorter than average)
WEIGHT: about 21 pounds (also below average-but he is also shorter, so it makes sense)
TEETH: 6 fully in and 5 more cutting through right now! (Canaan had 16 at this time in his life.) Four new ones cutting through are molars and one next to his right bottom tooth.

Max has taken off recently. He is finally walking. He started taking his first steps almost 2 months and a half ago, around 14 months of age. I was VERY ready for him to walk quite a while ago, but I especially wanted him to be able to walk well for the summer so he could better play outside. Of course, I have my selfish reasons too: it is much easier when he can walk and I don't have to carry him everywhere- or at least not on short trips outside. Of course, he really isn't to that point yet, b/c he is pretty slow and wobbly still, but he does well inside and I know it won't be long before he is running outside.
Max did climb before he walked. He even pushed a stool over to the couch and climbed onto the stool and then the couch before he walked! Right now he can almost get himself up on the couch without any help. More daring in that respect than Canaan. I think his main motivation for anything he does is keeping up with big brother Canaan, though. This gets him into a lot of situations where he falls. Between climbing and new walking, he is constantly bruising himself up all over! He is our more adventurous one. He loves to climb onto the kiddy chairs and sit in them. He has even got into the habit of carrying over the toy laptop (that doesn't do anything-it used to play some music stuff), bringing it to the kid's table, climbing ontop of the kiddy chair and sitting there banging away on the keyboard, just like he is a big person! So funny! And he loves to be sitting on the couch when Canaan is, or playing with the SAME toys that Canaan does. If Canaan is reading books, he'll grab a book or two and read too. He even knows which are Canaan's favorite cars (out of his ginormous stash) and goes for those cars specifically, not to Canaan's liking, of course. Still, he likes to do baby things too, like crash Canaan's neat line of cars he's made (yes, he still lines his cars up, though they talk to each other now-a-days) or steal a domino from him, etc.
Max also likes to imitate things, from a monster's (or dinosaur) growl that the big kids do, to the hand montions of the man leading singing at church in Prague (we're not quite so formal in Kharkov to have hand motions for songs in a house church setting!).
Favorite Things: He loves his rubber ducky in the bath. He also likes stacking cups. Just recently is he getting the hang of actually putting a smaller size cup inside a larger size cup. Max loves to open and close things. Open, close, open-close, open-close. And take things in and out. Such is a familiar sequence with him: open door-put in car-close door-open door-take out car-close door. He also loves taking clothes in and out of things, though why he seems to end on the "out" mode?! Messy boys! Oh, this includes pulling out cards and markers from boxes and trying to put them back in where they came from! He just gets frustrated when he can't put it away himself! Lids, doors, anything he can open and close and put things in he loves. He even can un-screw something if it is just loosly on there. Really, he has come from just fiddling with something to small screwing motions! But he hasn't perfected the "screw on motion and when he gets something off (like a bottlecap) he wants me to put it back on so that he can take it off again. He has also a new-found love of slides. I have to put him at the top, and he loves to slide down (holding my hand, of course). I can't wait 'til he can climb up himself. The slides we are normally around aren't little kid friendly. Another new favorite of Max's is Dogs. He just LOVES dogs of any kind and size. He points them out and wants to go up to them. He will even lay on Kona, Rob and Denyce's dog, and kiss her! He enjoys other animals too, but seems to have a preference for dogs.
Likes: Max likes to read books, but on his own terms, and mostly by himself. He is definitely different from Canaan in this aspect. Canaan would sit and listen to books for extended periods of time (30+minutes) when he was young and Max's age. Max likes to crawl over to the book cabinet, empty 10-20 off the shelf, and then flip through them. He has just started to bring the occasional book to us and will sometimes sit for the whole thing to be read. This is a very new development! If I read a book to Canaan on the couch, Max will get a book and take it over to the love-seat and read it. Max also likes music. This might classify as a "Favorite," actually. He loves singing and will sometimes sway or dance to music. You should see him do the motions for This Little Light of Mine! He sticks his little index finger up in the air and waves it all around, shining his light. This morning, watching Canaan in church, he even put it up to his mouth to blow on it, as well as put his fingers together to cover it on those verses to the song. So cute! He even seems to "sing" a lot during the day. He jabbers in a sing-song type of way.
WORDS: Max has 8 words! Max can say "ba-ba" (bye-bye), "Ha," (hi) "Ma-Ma," and "Da-Da," "Uhh" (up), "Ahyy" (eye), and "Ba-ha" (banana). He is such a boy! Some are more "attempts" at saying something and we like to think he'll say it correctly one day. (Of course he will!) We are starting to try to get him to "try" to say words instead of just pointing and grunting or squealing. It is sort-of working, depending on how patient or persistent we are in getting him to try! Canaan was my a-typical little wordster, having 23 words at 12 months, in comparison to Max's 4 at 15 months!
Signs and Other Signals: Max only has 3 consistent signs: all done, drink and more. Notice, they are all words centered around the table! Max also waves bye and hi. He has two separate waves. One is an open-palmed, back and forth wave for Hi. The bye wave is the typical open and closing of the palm by moving the fingers up and down. And, Max shakes he head for yes and no, quite correctly. However, he is quite adept and pointing and grunting or indicating in other ways (such a flailing arms or squeals of delight or frustration) whatever it is he wants, or doesn't want.
Max always wants to eat and enjoys it. He has started to eat only as long as Canaan does, which is starting to make his mealtimes a little shorter. Keeping up with Canaan is definitely thinning him out. Between all the walking and crawling and climbing, and now shortened meals, he is thinning out. Still got a bit of some rolls on his legs, but not near as chubby as he was. Still has those cute chubby cheeks!
He typically will eat almost anything, but the past month he has started getting picky about what he eats. He prefers bread over anything. We have to hide it from him or put it on the table last; otherwise he almost refuses to eat anything else. We are working on this! :)
I stopped nursing about 6 weeks ago. He was down to 2 times- one late at night and one early in the morning, but I needed to wean him, and he basically stopped without any fuss or even noticing (by the way he showed no change).

There is more and more to report, but if I keep going, I'd never post this. Hope you enjoyed!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


I want to post a few more pics of our Prague vacation and write some more, but that will have to be a bit later. I have just a few minutes right now, and I can quickly post these. (I also put a bunch on my facebook account, so if you are interested in viewing them all, you can look them up there.)

Anyway, I've been searching for ways to get Canaan more involved with other kids and speaking Russian more. Recently, my friend Katya enrolled her son Senya (who is in the colorful striped shirt in the first picture) in gymnastic classes and suggested Canaan might enjoy it too. I really liked the idea, but Canaan gets very shy around new people, especially when they are speaking Russian. He can understand some Russian, and speak a little, but not much. So, I was very hesitant, wondering how Canaan would do.

He loved it! In his group were about 10 little boys and girls, all around 3 years old. They did various exercises with tumbling, and worked a little on the rings, bars, parallel bars, and trampoline. Canaan didn't understand everything, but was really good at watching the other kids and copying what they did. He was so excited to be there and do "tricks" that he cried when it was time to leave, saying he was only there a short time! I was so elated that he enjoyed the class! He'll be going 2 times a week, which I am sure he thinks is not enough! I'm so thankful for Katya suggesting it to me and for Canaan loving it!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Prague Vacation

Yes! We are on vacation in Prague!

It is wonderful! We are on our second of 7 days in Prague- and LOVING it! Prague is a beautiful city, and God knew we needed a vacation! Here are a few pictures from our time here.

Monday morning we took the train to Kiev. We over-nighted in Kiev, since we needed to stop by the embassy and get pages added to our passport. It is currently free to do this, but we heard they will be charging soon, and we were both almost out of pages! Tuesday morning Dougle and Canaan went to the embassy while Max and I went to the clinic. A day before we left, Max had a slight fever for a few hours and then started coughing. Since it was getting worse, and I didn't want a repeat of last month's sickness (bronchitis that I let go b/c I thought it was a virus that would go away on it's own, but instead dragged on for over a week until we finally found out what it was and got anti-biotics), I took the opportunity to visit the EuroLab clinic in Kiev that I heard was really good. And it was great. Very similar to an American clinic. We went in, only to find out Max just had sinus congestion that was draining into his throat and making him cough; but I guess that is better than a real sickness. After our trips out, we headed out to the airport to catch our flight to Prague!

The flight was just under 2 hours. There we met Liv and Dave, who'd arrived a bit over an hour ahead of us, and went to our apartment we'd rented. It is a cute little place, about 15 minutes by tram from the center of town. Since arriving, we've enjoyed a lot of things: time out downtown, roaming the streets, looking at the beautiful architecture, seeing a few sites, doing a bit of souvenir shopping, and eating wonderful food! One pic is from a Mexican restaurant. We've also eaten Chinese, Thai, Starbucks and KFC! In addition to restaurants, I am now munching on a delicious avocado and we had a bedtime snack of strawberries last night. All these are scrumptious treats we can't get in Kharkov (the restaurants- the fruit we just can't get until it comes in season in the summer). And, we have also averted a minor disaster: after loosing Max's blanket he sleeps with, we were able to back-track our steps an hour later and find it propped up on the edge of a trash can! What a blessing to see that! Well, that's all for now, folks, but I'll try to post a few more pics through our trip and write a bit more later! Love you all!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Afternoon in the Park

It is warming up! Yeah! Well, it has been getting in the 50's and maybe up to 60 this past week! And the sun is shining! It is wonderful. About all the snow and ice is gone, except for patches here and there in shady parts. Everyone is out turning over the packed soil in their little dirt patches in front of stores, etc., preparing to plant spring flowers! More and more people are out hanging out, gathered around park benches, strolling through the parks, and general taking more time than normal to get from here to there. And I see more smiles and laughs. Spring is wonderful in so many ways.
Another convenience of spring is not having to dress up so much before going outside. Just a hat and jacket. No special boots, extra socks or tights, gloves, scarves, etc, etc. It is great. And since we aren't wearing such bulky shoes and coats, Canaan has about mastered the art of putting on his own shoes and jacket. That is so nice for me! Max will even bring me his shoes and socks! Of course, he brings them whether it is time to go or not. But I think he finally likes getting outside now! I don't know if it is a change in the weather, or his newfound ability to waddle around. Maybe both. But he loves going "ba-ba" these days.
So, on our free day, our family invited the Hindmans and Nelsons to the park for some fun play. We brought balls and a bat and frisbees and a trike for Max, since he isn't too good on his own walking yet. We all had so much fun. And we just soaked up all the sun we could get. It was wonderful! Here are a few pictures. We even met a few people who stopped in to play a bit with their kids. I LOVE Spring!