Week 10: Baby’s First Vacation.

This week I had too much fun visiting with family and spent too much time traveling across the country – I am late for my weekly update!  Somehow we have entered into double digit territory – hard to believe.  In fact, when we woke up Friday morning, Casey was convinced Cullen was only nine weeks old.  Nope, he’s the big 1-0.

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This was a big week for Cullen – his first Christmas, first plane ride, and first time traveling!  These past ten weeks Cullen and I have figured each other out pretty well, and by now I have a good sense of his schedule and his cues.  But I had no idea how my little man would do when taken out of his familiar environment and thrown into an unpredictable schedule.

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One of the main changes I have noticed recently is my own confidence in taking care of him and incorporating him into my old everyday activities.  In our first few weeks, Cullen’s mood and schedule dictated my every move, and I was terrified to take him anywhere for more than short periods of time because I felt he was so unpredictable. 

Now I feel familiar and prepared enough that I can take him anywhere I need and know how to handle it.  He rarely cries for reasons I can’t identify, and I feel pretty confident that I can usually make him happy.  We are a really good team.

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As we reach the double digit weeks, I can really tell that Cullen is growing and developing.  His expressions are different, his stability is improving, and his sleeping and eating patterns are changing.  It’s so fun to watch him continue to grow and change.

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We spent this entire week out of town, and all things considered I think he handled things pretty well.  The first few days in Indianapolis were really overwhelming for him.  So many new hands, new dogs, new sounds, and new surroundings were a little too much for such a tiny person.  Thank god for his grandpa running out to buy him a swing – it made our lives so much easier!

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In addition to suddenly being passed around all day to family members, Cullen also had to deal with a three hour time change.  Casey and I did our best to keep him on pacific time, meaning that he stayed up until 10:30pm with the rest of us!  Usually by dinner he was ready for his nightly naked time.

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We also discovered this week that he LOVES watching TV!  At our house, I never watch TV during the day, and we only ever watch shows at night once he’s gone to bed, so he really never sees our TV turned on.  His grandparents have a gigantic wall-mounted flat screen TV in their living room, and he was very content to sit on someone’s lap and stare at it for long stretches of time.  He better not get used to it!

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Once we left Indianapolis, we headed south to Cincinnati to see my side of the family, which meant that Cullen got to see his cousin Jonah again!  Jonah is 6 months old now, and it’s amazing to me how different they are with four months between them.  This was my mom’s first time seeing the boys together, and she was just beaming with grandma pride.

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I can’t wait for a few more years when these guys are toddlers chasing each other around the house.

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Now that we are back home, he is in full vacation recovery mode.  The constant handling and stimulation was very fun, but also very tiring for this little guy.  He’s catching up on a lot of much needed rest!

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As this new year starts, it’s hard for me to believe that Cullen’s birth year is over.  In a way it makes me sad, as 2011 will always have a very special place in my heart.  But I can already tell that we will create so many special memories with Cullen in 2012.