Saturday, August 29, 2009

Party in the Park

Well, this is a short post! I am so behind. But, I've been taking notes of cute things Canaan says, and wanting to write about that and how much Max has grown recently. Unfortunately, I am really tired and need to go to bed. But, here is a picture. We went to a birthday party in the park for a friend of ours who turned two. It was a great day and we had lots of fun. Look how big Max is, sitting on his own now!
Hope you enjoy the snapshot!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Daddy Is Home

NOTE: Most of the pictures are from our train ride, since I always managed to forget the camera when we were out and about in Kiev. Two pictures are at the train station in Kiev; the rest are from on the train or views out the train window.

Daddy arrived home from Kiev last night on the express train. For those of you interested, there are two express trains a day that run between Kiev and Kharkov. One leaves around 6:30am and arrives 6 hours later; the other leaves around 5:30pm and arrives 6 hours later. The express train is nice because it only stops twice. Once in a small town by which I don't remember the name, and only for about 5 or 10 minutes. The other stop is two hours outside of Kharkov, at a town called Poltava. The trains stops for 20-25 minutes there, which is enough time to get off the train and walk around the platform if so desired. And, since I am on the topic of trains, several of the pictures are from on the train (I forgot to bring our camera when we had the opportunity to go sight seeing). Rob so graciously bought me the train tickets for the boys and I to visit Kiev. Unwittingly, he bought nicer tickets that we all imagined. We traveled first class, which meant we were in a little cabin area with just 3 seats, a fold out table in front of us, and a glass door that could be closed for extra privacy. This is different to the airplane like seating that is on normal second class trains. We really enjoyed it, and on the way home, we had the 3 seated cabin to ourselves, which was nice!

Anyway, back to my story, Daddy arrived home last night around 11:45pm. Yeah! When Canaan woke up this morning, he went into his bedroom and Canaan exclaimed, "You are home, Daddy!" (Master of the Obvious is sometimes what he call him!)

Daddy was gone for 11 days before we left to go see him. The boys and I took the morning express to Kiev on Thursday, arriving after his class that day. We then spent a long weekend with him (he still had class, and Daddy and Mommy did homework together when the boys slept), and we came home on the Tuesday morning express. It was wonderful getting to see Dougle during his 3 week course! The boys were sick and it was rainy most of the time, but we still had a great time being together as a family.

We were able to stay with Dougle where he was staying in the Obolong Church of Christ's apartment they have. We worshiped with this small congregation on Sunday morning. Monday after Dougle's class, we went to Mat Rodina. It is a huge statue (supposedly bigger than the Statue of Liberty). Around it are various sculptures and tributes to those who fought in WW2, as well as a small display of various war vehicles and machinery. It was very interesting to look at all that, and for about 60 cents we were able to go into an airplane they had and sit in the pilot's seats. Canaan and I did that, since Max was somehow too young to be able to go onto the plane. I have no idea why that is. There was even a MIG you could sit in, but we skipped that as well, since even Canaan was too young to sit in that seat. Again...??? But, overall we had a lovely time just walking around the area as a family.
We came home on Tuesday, and Dougle followed to arrive late Thursday night.

We are THANKFUL for Daddy being able to have the opportunity to do some hard core studying, as well as THANKFUL for the fact that he is back with us!

Friday, August 7, 2009


Vlada is my neighbor I go walking with two or three times a week. Her little boy, Platon, is 3 months old. We walk to the park; Platon usually sleeps, Max watches everything, and Canaan plays a bit on the playground. Somedays Canaan walks and pushes his own stroller, other days he rides with Max.
We've struck up a good friendship. It is nice to have someone in the building I can trust like her. She speaks slowly and can re-say things if I don't at first understand. We have decided we need a a dictionary to take with us! So, not only is it a good time we have, but it is great Russian practice for me. Dougle has helped/or been helped by her husband, Misha, too. We hope to get to know this family better over time.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Sooo Hard

So, I tried to take a snapshot of the two boys. It is SOOO HARD to get them to be still (so as not to be blurry) and both smile at the same time.
So, these are just a few snapshots. They were in their PJ's getting ready to go to bed. Yes, Canaan still sleeps with his blanket (we have 3 that are the same that I rotate out)! Thought I'd share, even though they aren't perfect!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

First Food and Applesauce making Adventures

Ok, this is a late post. Max ate his first food on Tuesday, July 14th! We made rice cereal for him. I looked at the baby cereal in the store, but all of it had sugar added and was very expensive. So, I talked to Denyce, our team queen of health and do-it-yourself in terms of cooking. And I looked online. It is super easy to make cereal yourself! I started with rice cereal (just make rice and blend in the blender). After a few days, I moved onto oatmeal. Max definitely prefers oatmeal over anything! Usually I make enough for a couple days, keep it in the fridge and just add a bit of water and heat it up when I feed it to him. That makes my life just a tad easier, especially lately while Dougle is gone.
We have also tried carrots, which he didn't like at all, mashed potatoes, which he ate, but didn't just "like" them like he does his oatmeal, and applesauce. I was over at Rob and Denyce's last night. While she fixed us dinner, I peeled and cut apples. We had two different types: small redish, gold apples that were a bit mushy and sweet, and small light green apples that were more tart and crisp. I always prefer tart and crisp. We cooked the redish ones and blended raw the green ones. The green apples made a delicious, yet tangy applesauce that was great, and the redish ones made a very light flavored, but sweet, mixture. I fed Max the tangy stuff, because it was ready first. He ate about 10 or 15 bites and then was making awful faces that seemed to say "Ok, this is getting too tart for my liking!" Maybe I'll try the sweeter stuff today. Canaan didn't like it either, but he doesn't really eat fruit at all (except bananas), and he was in a bit of a mood, so maybe we'll try the sweeter stuff today. So, though it took forever to peel and cut the apples (maybe I'll get faster with practice), it was great having applesauce, since they don't sell it in the stores here. And the best part is that it was with fresh fruit I bought at the market, grown by families at there small homes in the country (dacha). And we didn't add sugar to either, and both were fabulous by themselves. I think we'll put cinnamon in when we eat it next, though, because we are all fans of cinnamon!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

6 Months Old

Max is 6 months old today! Canaan and I sang a round of "Happy Birthday" to him and everything! I just wanted to post a quick picture. Right now Dougle is in Kiev and I am here with the boys in Kharkov. So, I am extra busy holding down the fort by myself!
So, I think Max weighs about 16 pounds, but I will have to try to weigh him on my scale soon again because I don't remember correctly. He has no teeth yet, but I am sure they are coming soon! He is the super smile-iest boy ever. He just grins when we look at him. He loves his big brother so much. He watches him all the time. He can't ever concentrate on eating when there is anything interesting going on around him (half the time I have to hide in the bedroom to get him to eat properly)! We started oatmeal a couple weeks ago (otherwise, I am still nursing). He has tried rice cereal too, as well as potatoes and carrots, but the oatmeal is his favorite. (I'll post pics of that when I can.) He has started sitting on his own for 20 seconds at a time and can sometimes 'catch' himself when he is about to fall over. He reaches for everything these days, rolls around a lot on the floor, prefers sleeping on his side or tummy, and is constantly chewing on everything: including his toes! Everyone tells us he looks just like Canaan, though the older he gets the less the resemblance seems to me. He looks more like my (Lucy's) side of the family, while Canaan definitely favors Daddy! Well, that is my opinion. About a month ago we finally got him sleeping through the night. He sleeps 10-12 hours a night on average and takes about 3 short naps during the day. He is such a joy to have. We love having Maximus Craig as part of our family!
We did go out to play today on a pile of gravel outside in our courtyard. We were going to go to the park, but Canaan found this pile of gravel/rocks much more interesting and we played here for about 45 minutes! Boys and getting dirty and climbing, etc. Max was content to sit in the stroller and watch it all. At one point, all 3 of us ran down it! Fun! Fun!
So, those are the pics. All taken today.
Love you all!