Hayden and Layla's Place

England Trip October 31, 2012

Filed under: Mommy — karagoodwin @ 8:01 pm
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We went to England at the beginning of the month for just shy of 2 weeks.  It was such a wonderful trip.  The primary purpose of the trip was to celebrate John’s mom’s 70th and our new baby niece’s Christening, for which we were honored to be named Godparents.  We did so much that I don’t really know where to start.

We decided not to rent a car, since Michelle and James would be off work as well and we figured two cars would be enough between all of us since we’d normally be going places together.  That meant poor James was chauffeuring us here, there, and everywhere – but always with a smile, even when he was knocked out by a nasty ear and sinus infection, bless his heart.

We were fortunate that even though we were not that mobile, our friends from when we lived in Basingstoke – the Carters, Gemma, and the Roberts – were able to drive up to see us one day.  We have 5 kids + one on the way between us all, so it was a lot of fun seeing each other and the kids and catching up on everything with them.  The Carters are actually moving to Indy with Rich’s work in January, so we are so excited to be able to see them a lot more soon!  Layla was funny, because she was not too bothered about me holding Maddie most of the time, but as soon as these friends showed up with their kids she got pretty protective, not wanting Mommy to hold anyone but her.  Compounding the problem was apparently Rich and Anita’s daughter loves dark haired women (oddly, since they are all fair (I’m thinking something to do with her previous life)), so she kept wanting me to hold her.  Layla would insist on being held, too, and try to push Sophie away, but it didn’t deter Sophie.  I tried to tell them they were going to have to sort it out because they are going to be spending a lot of time together soon!

The big Christening/70th birthday party (M&M party! – Madeline and Maddie) was a great success.  Maddie was Christened in the same church we had Hayden and Layla Christened in last year, which we found out later was the church where John’s dad’s grandparents were married!  That blew my mind.  I guess it’s not AS shocking considering it’s England and they have many more historic structures than we do in America, but it’s a fairly modest sized church and I consider it an unfathomable coincidence that Hayden and Layla’s (and Maddie’s) great-great-grandparents were married there.  Anyway, Maddie did very well in the limelight, and our kids were also well behaved which we were happy about.  There were plenty of M&Ms being consumed by one Mr. Hayden, as well as cake, so by the end of the night he was literally running/dancing around in circles with some balloons on a sugar high, but I’ll take that over a meltdown, right!

We did some other fun things which I will mention but try not to go into too much detail for fear this post will be too long.  We went to a zoo with some of John’s college friends and their families, went to London with Granddad (unfortunate, rainy weather but Hayden got to see Big Ben which he has been waiting months for since it’s featured in Cars 2 which he was obsessed by all summer, and Mommy and Daddy got Pizza Express which they were happy about, plus London is so great that even if the weather doesn’t cooperate, the sites are still amazing, and last thing about it, it was Maddie’s first time out in the city and she did AMAZING – she only woke briefly to feed while we were eating and we didn’t hear a peep from her the rest of the time!), celebrated the evening of Madeline’s actual birthday in an Indian restaurant while an “Indian Elvis” entertained us, went on a grown-up night out with our friends while the kids spent the night at Camp Granddad’s (which they loved and we got glowing reports on them afterwards), went to Legoland twice (can I mention again what a trooper James is??), and sometimes in the midst of all this action, we even relaxed with MMM&J. 🙂

I think that’s enough for this post.  I left out so much stuff, I might do another one to try to capture a little more but you are released for now. 😉

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Disney! April 12, 2012

Filed under: Mommy — karagoodwin @ 3:07 pm
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Wow, well I don’t even know where to start with this one.  We took a family trip down to Orlando to do Disney.  John’s mom and sister have a time share down there so we stayed with them and Michelle’s boyfriend, James.  It was such a great time!

We decided to drive the van down there.  We knew we would save money in the long run because apart from saving money on flights (somewhat offset by the price of gas and hotel rooms), we would not have to rent a car that sits 7 plus rent a car seat and booster seat.  Some people do the drive from Indiana to Florida in one day by waking up in the middle of the night and getting there late at night.  We didn’t think this would work for us with the kids’ ages – particularly Layla.  When Layla is asleep the person not driving can get some rest, but if she is awake there is no sleeping for the non driving person.  She wanted to be entertained.  I can’t blame her – it was a looooong old drive, and I’m sure her car seat was not the most comfortable for all day sitting.  We decided that we had a fantastic time on our trip and can’t wait to go back when Layla is old enough to appreciate it in a different way and Michelle’s (as yet unborn) baby can ride some rides, but we will fly next time and stay in a Disney resort for a number of reasons, mostly because we can get to and from the airport, resort, and Disney parks with no need for a car!

We did all the Disney parks – Magic Kingdom three times, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, and Hollywood Studios.  Hayden did the roller coasters!  I couldn’t believe it, because he is normally so cautious.  He started with space mountain.  It’s completely dark in there, so I’m not sure how much he really liked it.  He never wanted to go on it again, but he really didn’t show any emotion about the ride afterwards one way or the other.  At Animal Kingdom he went on Everest, which was very fast and goes backwards and in the dark and all sorts, and he seemed to really like that.  Everyone loved the Star Wars ride at Hollywood Studios, as well as the Buzz Lightyear ride there.  In fact, those were 2 of the group’s favorite rides, although overall Hollywood Studios was my personal 3rd favorite of the 4.  We did tons of rides, but we tried to have shorter days at the parks so we could also have some down time at the condo.  Michelle is pregnant, Madeline has a leg that gives her trouble, and the two kids – well, need some downtime!  So most days we had pool time as well.  One evening we drove down to my aunt’s house to see my aunt, uncle, cousins, their kids, etc.  My brother and his family were also in Orlando at the same time, so they went to my aunt’s as well.  We also ran into them at Magic Kingdom on the way to Tom Sawyer’s island!

I was really so proud of the kids.  Going into the trip, I thought for sure there would be at least one meltdown from each of them every day.  The parks are just so over stimulating, and there is so much potential for crying – heat (which wasn’t too bad while we were there), hunger, thirst, waiting – that I thought we would have a few battles.  But really, they were very patient and good.  Which is good – because they should be allowed back in. 😉

It was really such a great trip, we can’t wait to do it again sometime!  Madeline came back with us and is staying with us for 2 weeks, so for her and Hayden the vacation continues!  Madeline is watching Hayden on my work days.  She was going to watch Layla, too, but Layla couldn’t get her head around the idea of Mommy trying to work, so she went back to day care.  That’s good for her anyway, as she really has a good time there.

 

Florida March 30, 2008

Filed under: Mummy On Hayden — karagoodwin @ 7:03 pm
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We went to Florida last week, Saturday through Wednesday.  It was such a nice trip!  Michelle and Madeline have a timeshare down there which has room for 10, so we stayed there and it was a really nice place.  It was a fun group – Madeline, Michelle, Deirdre, Michelle’s friend Kayleigh and Johnny, and Johnny’s 12 year old son Tyler.  (And John, Hayden, and me of course.)  We had mostly good weather.  It was raining when we got there but the other days were mostly sunny but a little cool.  When we got there we went to see my aunt and uncle, Jeaneen and Alvin.  We couldn’t get in to the timeshare until 4 pm, so they were kind enough to host us at their house.  We had some lunch and took a walk.  They live out in the country and a foal had been born in the last week so we walked about 1/4 of a mile to see that.  It started raining when we got there!  My uncle tried to hurry ahead to get the car to drive us home, but we were such fast walkers that by the time he picked us up we were about 100 yards from his house. ha!  Sunday we hung out around the pool in the complex where the timeshare is.  It was a beautiful day and probably the warmest one we had.  Hayden went in the pool briefly, but the water was not too warm so we couldn’t keep him in long.  We managed to keep him in the shade quite a bit since we brought a little UV-blocking tent with us that pops up really easily.  That night we met up with my aunt and uncle again as well as my cousin and her family for dinner.

Monday we went to Sea World!  We met Faith and Steph and their kids there, which was excellent!  John and I love Sea World, and it was the perfect place to take Hayden at his age.  We watched a couple of the shows, and Hayden was actually pretty interested in them.  During the first show we sat through, I was going ‘Ooooo’ whenever something cool would happen – as you do – but that would cause him to stick his lip out and start crying!!  So I had to curb that (although he seemed to get used to it as I accidentally did it a couple of more times that day and he seemed ok with it).  When we saw Shamu’s show, they have this little Shamu chant with arm motions that they have the crowd do and we were making his arms do the motions while we shouted ‘Shamu,’ and he loved that!  We have done it several times since then and he still gets a big smile.  Shamu!

Tuesday we played miniature golf until it warmed up a bit, then spent some time by the pool.  We left Wed night, but that day we went to the new Sea World water park.  We were going to do that on Tues, but it was too cold for a water park that day.  Wed it was still fairly cold out, but warmer.  It’s a nice little water park.  There is a slide that goes through a dolphin tank which looked pretty cool.  The line was really long for that one, though, and since we had a plane to catch we didn’t have time to wait for it.  Michelle, Johnny, Kayleigh, and I went on a group ride where we were all in a raft together, and it was quite fun because we picked up a lot of speed but at the end of the slide it stops very abruptly and we had been going so fast that we ended up crashing into each other.  Kayleigh and I knocked heads and now I have a big black eye!!  I look like I’ve been beaten up.  Makeup doesn’t even cover it.  😦

So as you can see it was a really fun trip!  Hayden did really well on the plane on the way there.  You wouldn’t have even known we had a baby with us, he was quiet as a mouse!  On the way back he was a little noisier (he discovered this screeching sound while we were in Florida which is quite loud and he was doing that a lot on the plane), but once he was fed and changed he settled down and eventually went to sleep.  Unfortunately Hayden was not himself on the trip.  I imagine it was a combination of being out of his routine, less sleep, unfamiliar surroundings, and so on but he was just very serious the whole time we were there.  Usually he is pretty happy-go-lucky and spends a lot of time laughing and smiling, but on the trip it was really hard to even get him to smile.  He was fussier than usual as well.  As soon as we got home and he got back on his schedule he got back to his old self.

 

Oh how he changes! January 5, 2008

Filed under: Mummy On Hayden — karagoodwin @ 2:49 am
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John captured a lot of the latest stuff with Hayden that we hadn’t had a chance yet to post.  All of his recent developments have been so fun and exciting!  We try all the time now to get him to do his belly laughs.  As John mentioned, we think he is teething at the moment as he is really fussy and drooly.  He has had a couple of rough days and it’s hard to even get him to smile, so there haven’t been any laughs from him lately. 😦

We have started him on solid food!  The Friday before Christmas we fed him some infant rice cereal.  He pulled the funniest faces, as though he didn’t like it.  He ate it like a champ, though.  The first couple of times he ate a few bites and was done, but after that he has having seconds!  He ate only cereal once per day until yesterday when we started him on avocado.  He really likes avocado.  I am making his baby food instead of buying the commercial baby food, which I think I will really quite enjoy.  Next will be sweet potatoes and then bananas.  He has to eat only the new food for 4 – 7 days before trying a new food to make sure he doesn’t have an allergy to it.

We have had a lovely week and a half off for Christmas.  It was so great having Michelle and Stuart here over the holidays.  Tomorrow we have to go back to work. 😦  Fortunately for me I only have to work tomorrow and then get my normal Thurs and Fri off.  My mom is going to watch Hayden tomorrow so he doesn’t have to go to day care.  If he doesn’t go at all in a week they only charge half, but if he goes for even one day it’s regular price.  So Grandma is going to take care of him while I work!

 

Auntie Michelle January 2, 2008

Filed under: Dad Blogs on Hayden — JDG @ 12:57 am
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Hayden finally got to meet Auntie Michelle!!! He loved that she came to visit with her boyfriend Stuart.  Hayden seemed to like both of them very much!  He smiled lots around Michelle and even fell asleep in her arms a couple of times and he hates falling asleep as he is always worried he is missing out on something!!

We didn’t do too much crazy stuff while they were here, more about spending time in chilling and getting Michelle and Hayden acquainted.  We made sure we got a good quality steak in while Grandpaman and Grandma G babysat.  Made sure we went in the hottub and drank champagne.  Did some retail therapy when they got to make the most of the weak $!!!  Had a wine party, chili night!  I guess we did quite a bit after all when you mix in Christmas and presents in all that!!!

It was really nice to have them here, they’ve got off to Vancouver for a week now before they head back to the UK.  Hopefully they’ll come back again soon 🙂

 

Gemma October 29, 2007

Filed under: Hayden Blogs — karagoodwin @ 7:54 pm
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Gemma was here last week.  She got here on Saturday and left Wed.  Unfortunately we picked her up from the airport about an hour before we had to say goodbye to Jude.  I can only imagine how she felt walking into that situation.  She was very kind though and watched Hayden for us while we went to the vet, and then gave us big hugs when we got back.  It was really nice to have a close friend here during that time.  I probably would have spent my days moping around, but because she was here we got out and walked around Indianapolis, shopped, ate, and went down to Bloomington, my old university town.  She definitely helped us feel better.

We’ve been so lucky having so many visitors.  We love that so many people from England and other parts of the US have gotten to meet Hayden already.  Just need to get Jono and Maz and Helen and Wyn over now!  And Faith, are you still coming in Dec?  And of course John’s dad needs to see him still.  My cousin Mandy is coming in from Chicago this weekend to meet him, so we are looking forward to seeing her.  Then that’s it until Christmas when John’s sister comes out.  So if anyone else fancies a visit we have openings! 🙂

Today was my first day back to work.  I am working from home three days a week throughout the end of the year, when I am supposed to go back full time.  I am still working for IBM although for a different department that has very limited travel.  Even though I work out of the house, Hayden still has to go to daycare so he can get proper care while I’m working and I can likewise actually get work done.  I don’t think it would give my clients a lot of confidence if I had a crying baby in the background during conference calls!  Fortunately there is a day care center with infant care just down the road from our house.  It is literally about a 40 second drive from our driveway to the center.  It is an easy walk as well but I don’t know if I will ever not be in such a rush to see him that I would take the extra time to walk.  Anyway, it is so near that I can go feed him during my lunch time.  That is huge while I am adjusting to being apart from him, because it only ends up being two 3 to 4 hour blocks of time without him, instead of a long 8 or 9 or 10 hour stretch.  I don’t know if I will always go there for lunch, but it is perfect right now.  I went today and he was so tired he was completely zonked out while he was eating and probably didn’t really register that I was even there!  Oh well, I know I need to see him more than he needs to see me.  I never knew I was such a wuss. ;-P