My favorite little sister! She's so beautiful!
Well, I'm still alive. God is good. I know you've probably forgotten all about this blog (I know I have from time to time) and thought I had finished writing here, but I've just neglected it for a while. Hopefully I'll be back for a while, I always forget how nice it is to get all your thoughts out.
We've all had so much happen to us over the last 6+ months that I haven't written here, so I guess I'll just give you a quick re-cap to catch you up on what you've missed.
The Baby (Amaya)- We had our second child, a beautiful and perfect little girl named Amaya Elise Alvarado, on December 14th, 2011. I can't even begin to tell you how wonderful she is and how in love with her we are. She honestly fits so well into our family and all my doubts about parenting two children (like if I'd love them the same amount, if I'd be able to devote an equal amount of time to each of them, if Liara would do well with sharing the attention... etc) were squished in seconds. We ALL adore her and are so happy she's here. I can't even imagine how our lives were before her anymore. Liara absolutely LOVES her little sister and is so good with her, and Amaya loves her right back... she gives her more smiles and giggles than anyone else and always is looking around following Liara's voice. It makes my heart so happy to see them together. I can't wait to see the mischief they get into together and the bond that is growing every day. She was 7 lbs 11 oz and 21 1/4 inches when she was born... a big girl compared to Liara, and is already up to 12 lbs 6 ounces as of last week (she was 7 weeks then...) so she's my chunky monkey. She has held her head up like a champ since day 2 and is super curious about the world. She loves to eat... she wants to be attached to me every 2 hours on the hour even now at 8 weeks, but that's ok by me. Oh, I love her. Our birthing experience was so wonderful with her, I had her all naturally (hooray for two natural births under my belt!) at a midwife center here in Pearland. I love my midwives and honestly am a little bummed that this is almost surely our last baby, just because that means that I won't get to have another one with the Rite of Passage ladies. I can't believe that Amaya is already almost two months old. Where has the time gone?!
Liara- We celebrated Liara's second birthday with a bouncy castle and some close friends at home, which was a lot of fun. She is growing so fast and amazes me every day. Her vocabulary is astonishing and makes me laugh all the time. The other day we were doing puzzles and she asked "Mommy, will you do it? I'm exasperated". Honestly?! What two year old says stuff like that? My daughter does. She speaks in complete complex sentences all the time and is always wanting to learn more. She has started to throw a few fits and temper tantrums (as does every two year old), but is quick to stop and correct herself and "ask nicely" when requested. She's learning. Her hair is finally starting to really come in and is now down to her shoulders in the back (not in front though... she kind of looks like a pixie). She still loves to read and we go to the library every two weeks to pick out roughly 30 books that we focus on... as well as our 50 or so of our own. She also loves to do puzzles, play at the playground, and go to church. She does not like to go to the daycare part though, she wants to be with us in the big church... lol. She still isn't fantastic at being away from Mommy (unless it is someone she knows well, like Daddy or Grandma... then she's fine), but we're working on it. She is still an absolute joy and I love her to pieces. She is so good with her little sister and is my good little helper. We're working on starting to potty train a little bit and she does well some days, and horrible others. She'll wear big girl panties without a problem, but she's hesitant to use the potty and will insist on having a diaper on to go. Oh well, it's still early in the game.
Nic- He's so wonderful. He has been transferred to the US office of Fugro here in Houston! We are so pleased and are looking forward to what is going to happen now. He just started with them on the 1st of February, so it's still new, but so far so good. He'll have to travel back and forth to the UK office still pretty often, but at least we're back in the US now! He has been in the UK for the most part since we left Scotland in August. He flew back the 1st of Sept, then was here for a week in October and then came back for Amaya's birth in December. Then he had to go back on the 3rd of January and finally came back on the 25th. It's been hard to be away from him for a month and a half at a time, but we made it through and are glad that it's finally starting to ease up. He's such a great Daddy and is so good with the girls. I really can't tell you how much I appreciate him when he's here (and away...). He's been working on a quad-copter lately which is fun... he is a little obsessed with it. Liara loves to watch him fly it and it is so cute to see them so excited about it together. Perhaps he doesn't need a little boy after all. We're supposed to fly back to Aberdeen together on the 19th to pack up our things there and move out of the house before the end of the month. I'm looking forward to closing that little chapter of our lives and seeing where God takes us now.
That leaves me. I'm doing wonderfully. I had another super easy pregnancy and birth and am loving being Mommy to my girls. I can fit into my jeans from before I had Liara (I'm still a little snug in a few of them, but I can get them on!), although I'm nowhere near where I was pre-Amaya. I have to keep reminding myself it's only been 8 weeks though. It'll happen. I've had a massive change of heart as far as my career is concerned... I have decided to go back to school to become a midwife myself. I am so very excited and can't wait to start the coursework. I am really looking forward to helping others have the birth experiences that I have had myself with both my girls and can't wait to be a part of bringing someone's child into the world! I haven't been this excited since I don't even know when. I am beyond thrilled and have been talking to my own midwives about it. They have been super supportive and helpful throughout everything. I know I've got a great support system. The process takes about 3 years to get it all done, so I'll be a CPM (certified professional midwife) right about the time that Liara enters Kindergarten. I think that's a great time to start a new career and begin to shift the focus a little. I love that I'll be able to still spend a ton of time with my girls though, while being a working Mom in a rewarding profession. It really seems to be absolutely perfect for me! I can't wait!
That about wraps it up for my little family...
My mom was re-diagnosed with breast cancer again today. I'm still in shock a bit and am not quite sure what to think about it. I know that God will work it out and am praying... that's pretty much all I can do at this point. We are waiting on news that will tell us where it is in her body and at what stage she's in. Hopefully we find that out soon so that we can figure out a game plan from there. Keep us in your thoughts and prayers on that one please.
Oh! I almost forgot, we might be looking at buying a new house. Nic's office right now is about 10 miles from our house here in Houston, but they are moving to one of the other offices here in Houston before the end of the year (meaning he'd have about an hours commute each way). That's not really ideal, and since we have tenants in the house right now anyway, we are debating leaving them there and just getting another house closer to the 2nd office. That way we don't have to worry about it later. We're talking to the mortgage lady at the moment to see if that's even feasible right now (especially since we had foreign income for the last 4 years). We might have to wait a little bit to get re-established here in the US, but we'll see. It's exciting to think about though!
Ok, I'm off to bed... it's 3:30 in the morning and everyone else is sleeping (including Amaya) but she's due to wake up for another feed in about 45 minutes, so I'd better take advantage of the time for some shut eye.
I'll try to be better about posting, but no promises! I'll leave you with a few pictures ( they ended up being at the top but I'm too sleepy to mess with it just now... Oh well).