Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Spring Break

We decided to take advantage of our last vacation without kids and spent some time on the coast. We spotted some gray whales migrating north at Boilers Point before heading down to
Newport where we explored the impressive aquarium and marine science center. We even got to pet some sting rays and baby sharks! Next was a visit to Yaquina Head to see the lighthouse and some of the best tide pools we've ever seen. There were seals, sea aenomes, starfish, and urchins everywhere we looked. Dave even spotted a nudibranch, and Erin managed to balance on the slippery rocks despite her pregnant belly. Dinner was Mo's famous clam chowder and then we headed back to the hotel in Lincoln City to enjoy the pool and hot tub. The next morning we walked down the beach in the pouring rain, but unfortunately Dave wasn't able to find one of the famous glass floats, so instead we went to the gallery to watch a glass blowing demonstation. When the rain finally cleared we decided to buy a small sport kite and enjoyed being kids again and learning to fly it. The video is Erin's first attempt. Don't worry, she improved with some more practice.

Later that week we went back to Seaside with some friends for a campfire and Dave tried to go clamming, but pretty much just ended up poking the ground with his shovel a lot. Other highlights of the week were that we put the finishing touches on Alyson's room and got our garden (which consists of a few rectangular pots sitting on our porch) started. It was a much needed and enjoyable break!

Happy Easter

Here's Alyson in her Easter dress. She enjoyed her first time at church.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Walks, poopy diapers, and sleepness nights

Aly's hiccups video

We're convinced that Aly is absolutely the cutest baby on earth, with the cutest hiccups ever. It's so much fun to watch her grow (literally!) each day, gaining new abilities and having new experiences.

It's a game of firsts. First poopy diaper (that didn't take long), first bath (and first and second poops in the bath), first walk in the stroller outside, first visit to the grocery store, first time at church, etc. The game of firsts is our new favorite game. That, and the game we play where we just stare at her and think about how much we love her. We play that one a lot.

Can you tell how excited we are about our new bundle of joy? Sure, there are the downsides - lack of sleep, lack of sleep, and more lack of sleep - but the upsides outnumber these a million to one. Babies are so great!


Uncle Matt, Aly, and Mommy

Uncle Matt and Aly

Grandpa Shurtz

Grandma Renae Shurtz

An angel. That's what we think Erin's stepmother, Renae, really is. She may never know what her service to us this past week has meant. After having spent 2 weeks helping her daughter with a new baby followed by a week of vacation in New York, Renae came straight here to Forest Grove to spend yet another week away from her family helping new parents in the family adjust.

Renae cooked, cleaned, babysat, laundered, washed dishes (without a dishwasher), stocked cupboards, and offered the support that only family can during a week when we needed her. Aren't grandmothers great?

There have been other angels, too. Friends and ward members who cooked meals or made a point to offer their services have been indispensable as well.

Thank goodness for friends and family.

Look what the stork brought!

As far as Erin is concerned, she did all the work, and the stork shouldn't get any credit at all...

Alyson Jane Glabe was born on March 31st, 2009 at 1:50 PM. Erin's contractions began at 2:30 AM. Around 4:00 AM, Erin awoke Dave, who patted her on the back, mumbled something vaguely comforting, and promptly returned to his slumber. By 6:30, things started to register for Dave, and the preparations began. After showering, eating breakfast, and packing for a 3-day hospital stay, we were on our way.

At first, the nurses didn't believe that Erin was in labor. When they felt how low the baby's head was, however, they changed their minds.

Following a glorious and much-needed epidural and a subsequent hour-long nap, Erin was ready to push. The nurse was excited to have Dave see the tiny head emerging from the birth canal, and had him bend over to get a good look. Just then, Erin decided it was high time that her water broke, and sent a stream akin to that of a fire hydrant 8 feet across the room, narrowly missing Dave's face.

An exhausting 90 minutes later, Aly was born.

In the week and a half since our baby's birth, we've been adjusting to a new life, void of sleep but full of surprises and the greatest joy we've ever known.

We feel so blessed to have this little miracle from our Father in Heaven in our lives.