Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Merry Christmas!

This Christmas season has been especially fun for me. I always love this time of year...the colder weather, using the fireplace, listening to Christmas music exclusively, watching Christmas movies, getting decorations out that make me think of Christmases past, seeing the crowds at the mall, the lights all over the place, baking goodies, thinking of the perfect gift for someone I love...I could go on and on. I love the different music we sing at church and attending a Christmas Eve service.

I was excited to see what Canaan would notice this year, if she would get excited about anything, what she would think of the music and opening gifts.

Canaan loves balls so she was especially excited to see us hang ornaments on our tree. While hanging them, Matthew and I told her she could not touch them, they were to look at, and they were called ornaments, not balls. (Good thinking, right? If they're not balls, they aren't that exciting.) She did so great! I think she touched them only a handful of times. Most of the time she would look at them and say "mo, mo" (translation "no-no"). I think she enjoyed looking at the tree and seeing lights on the houses outside.

Grandma and Grandpa sent her a couple of books with recordings of them reading the books. Those are special. She didn't quite have the attention span for the entire books though. My mom also sewed a nativity scene for her to be able to play with. She mostly would carry the baby Jesus around.

We stayed home for Christmas. I did not miss the stress of air travel, but I definitely missed being with family.

Canaan did enjoy opening her gifts, but she hasn't played with them much yet. I think it may have been a little overwhelming. Thankfully I listened to Matthew and just got her some clothes for Christmas. We let everyone else get her something fun to play with. She got some really fun toys. My favorite gift by far was a quiet book my mom made. I cried once I opened it. It is really special. I look forward to Canaan spending some time with it.

All in all we had a nice couple of days at home. We have much to be thankful for. I think next Christmas is going to be something special to experience with our sweet girl.

And now to get to work on our Christmas cards...oops!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

We had a low-key Thanksgiving this year. This is the first year since we've been married that we did were not with family. It's a good thing we didn't plan to go anywhere because we've all been sick for what seems like a couple of weeks with a cough & cold. To say we are irritated with all the coughing is an understatement. We are thankful to not share the cold with those we love.

We hung around the house and enjoyed looking at the snow outside the window. I spent most of the day in the kitchen. Everything was homemade except for the ham. I started on a couple of things yesterday. We enjoyed dressing, 7 layer salad, 2 different cranberry sauces, broccoli and hollandaise, dressing, honey roasted sweet potatoes, Stefanie's Sunday rolls, and cherry pie. It sure took a long time to make what doesn't seem like a very long list. Too bad my taste buds weren't working right. The only thing I really tasted was the salad because it had some strong flavors.

After dinner we enjoyed a fire in the fireplace while we played and read. One benefit to the feeling bad is that Canaan is super cuddly. She really likes to be read to and likes to hear the same books over and over.

I am so thankful on this day for my family, friends, Savior Jesus, and so much more.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Visit from Grandma & Grandpa

Grandma and Grandpa came for a visit in November and stayed with us for 10 days. Canaan enjoyed staying home with them and making several trips into Seattle during their visit. We were quite the tourists while they were here.

I was able to take off a couple of days the first week they were here. They had already been to see Pike Place Market and the Children's Museum. Then my first day with them we went on a harbor cruise and then to the zoo. It was the perfect day for these outings with sunshine and the temperature in the high 60s. I think they cruise tour guide said it was warmer on this day than it was the 4th of July this year. On the cruise, we saw some beautiful views of downtown Seattle and even got to see some sea lions sunning.

Next we were off to the zoo. By the time we got there, it was an hour until closing. I think this is the best zoo I've been to in that the zoo seems to do a good job of replicating the animals' natural habitat. I was most excited about seeing the elephants as we had just seen a show on the National Geographic Channel where an elephant was born at the Houston zoo. The fall colors have been absolutely beautiful here...more vibrant than I've seen anywhere else. And the beautiful leaves were the perfect backdrop to the wildlife at the zoo.

The next day we went to the Space Needle and the Flight Museum. It was an overcast day and quite a bit cooler so it was good to spend that time indoors. At the flight museum we were able to get on a Concord and the Airforce One from Kennedy's time in office.

We kept busy through the weekend as well. Matthew was able to join us on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday we went to the Seattle Aquarium. There were several places you could stick your fingers in the water to touch the sealife. Canaan loves water so this was right up her alley. I don't think she touched anything, she just liked the water. She really seemed to enjoy looking at all the fish.

Sunday we made it to the Pacific Science Center. There were a lot of things to keep kids busy but not so much for Canaan to do. There was an area for toddlers where she played with some water, went down a slide, and enjoyed driving this helicopter. My favorite thing was the butterfly house. There were butterflies all over the place.

It was a really fun visit! By the end of the weekend, Canaan was done with being in the stroller. She was such a trooper! There were days when we were out during naptime and she behaved surprisingly well.

Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for coming to visit!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

My little ladybug

Canaan was dressed as a ladybug for the second Halloween in a row. I couldn't pass up the costume either year.

She got to wear her costume to a Halloween party at daycare on Friday and then again on Sunday at home. The kids at daycare had the cutest costumes and enjoyed eating a special snack during their party. Matthew and I both went to the Halloween party.

Canaan was the last child at the table eating her snack (and off the plate of the boy sitting next to her). She is a good eater and likes to eat often. So I asked her teacher if she was often the last child left at the table. The teacher kind of giggled and said that often that was the case. Miss C said they thought Canaan (like every child) must have a limit, but she wasn't sure if she'd seen Canaan reach that limit yet.

Canaan's snuggly for naps at daycare is a soft and satiny pig. She gets excited to see her pig and will hug and snuggle with it as soon as she gets her hands on it. So after the conversation I started with Canaan's teacher about her eating, Miss C told me that she and the other teacher were hoping I would dress Canaan as a little pig for Halloween. That would have been so cute indeed!

As it was, we had the cutest little ladybug around!

Picture credit to Mel B. She takes incredible pictures!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

17 months

Canaan turned 17 months on Saturday. On one of the very first rainy days we've had here in Washington, we met Melinda at the pumpkin patch near her home. I am not sure if I've been to a pumpkin patch before so I wasn't sure what to expect. It was pretty messy with the rain. We didn't stick around for long, but we did get some cute pumpkin pictures. Canaan doesn't like things on her head so the bow did not last long at all. She got a package in the mail just this week from Aunt Shannon and got this new dress. I thought it was a perfect dress for visiting the pumpkin patch. She was pretty messy by the end of our visit after falling in the mud a couple of times.

We tried some corn that had been picked in the field only 10 minutes before we bit into it. I had no idea you could eat corn right off the stalk without cooking it. It was delicious! We bought some and had some for dinner tonight.

And here are a couple of pictures from last year's visit to the pumpkins. We didn't make it to the pumpkin patch so we took these pictures in front of Whole Foods. I LOVE this pictures of Canaan. It is one of my absolute favorite pictures. Isn't it amazing that was already a year ago? These pictures were taken October 24, 2009.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Until I can get all caught up (or get started on getting caught up), I thought I would share a little about recent days with Canaan and recent pictures as well.

We cannot believe how quickly our little Canaan is growing. She is getting so big (getting a little bit more hair) and is learning new things daily. Everyone tells us how quickly the time goes, but you really don't understand until you are living it.

Canaan is enjoying daycare. When I drop her off in the morning, she will walk right in to the room. After I put her things away (jacket, snuggly, and lunch), I will kiss her goodbye and tell her I love her. She will wave and say hi to me as I leave. In the past 2 months, I think there have only been tears 2 or 3 days (generally when she has been really tired). It is so much easier to leave her when she is happy. We get good reports from her teachers. The very first day I picked her up, two teachers told me what a good eater she was. And I've heard it at least half a dozen times since then. She apparently finishes her lunch and is then interested in what the other kids are eating.

Canaan is so much fun. She is learning new words all the time. Just today, I heard her say her name for the first time. She won't do it again though. She is pretty good at repeating words that we try to get her to say. The words she says regularly on her own include momma, dadda, acs (for Max), hi (both for hi and bye), eggs, ball, moo (without opening her mouth), yes, rarararara (for a dog barking).

Lately she says "hi" to everyone (unless you ask her to, that is). At the grocery store, she will say "hi" to almost every person she sees. She will say "hi" to Max when we leave the house in the morning. And sometimes she will say "hi" when you put her to bed at night. She often waves as she says "hi". If someone says it back to her, she could talk to that person all day just with that one word. She is very friendly and loves people. Several parents of the kids at daycare have told me she is like the greeting committee...always saying hi to them in the mornings or afternoons.

She is still a great sleeper. I think in taking naps at daycare she may have learned to be really quiet when she wakes up. During the week, I sometimes have to wake her up. But on the weekends, we will sleep in a little bit. When we go in her room to see if she's awake, sometimes she's standing or sitting in her crib just waiting for us. She doesn't let us know when she wakes up any longer which is a little weird. At daycare, she is only allowed one nap during the day. At home on the weekends, there are days she will still take both a morning and an afternoon nap. It certainly helps with the late day fussiness when she will take two naps.

With all the changes that took place in July, Canaan became increasingly attached to her snugglies. Her Aunt Shannon gave her a snuggly frog before she was born. Once we saw that Canaan really liked the frog, I got another frog and a pig. We now always have one in the house, one in the car, and one at daycare. It is amazing how much comfort these things give her. As soon as she gets one, she will stick her right thumb in her mouth and snuggle with it.

That's a little update about our girl!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

We've moved!

I haven't posted here in a very long time and hope to remedy that soon with recent updates on the Merritt happenings. I would like to get caught up with my postings about Canaan, too.
After 19 months of unemployment, Matthew got a job in the Seattle area. I was able to get a job in the area as well with my employer in Colorado. So we moved 1400 miles across the country. Our very good friends the Bs live nearby which has been awesome. We lived with them for quite a while until we found a place to rent.
And the even bigger of October 1st we are no longer home owners. We got a call from our realtor during our drive through Montana that we had two offers on our house. What a blessing! We are so thankful we are no longer financially tied to Colorado.
This picture was taken on one of the most humid days we had experienced here so far back in September. We joined the Bs at a church event at a nearby farm. Canaan was not very cooperative with the photo as she was missing her afternoon nap.

Monday, May 17, 2010

50 weeks (May 8th)

We actually had nice weather for a day or two and tried to play with some bubbles outside. Apparently, the $1 deal bubbles at Target were not even worth a dollar. We'll have to get some more to try now that we're having warmer days.

We often see Canaan in this position when she's found anything on the floor. She picks it up and inspects it very seriously.

Enjoying some family time in Mom and Dad's room.

And then the weather got cold again. Here we are after a walk.

While Canaan and I were walking, Matthew and Max were playing. Max swam for a bit and played fetch. Once we all got home, Matthew noticed Max was bleeding and had quite the gash in one of his paws. So here we are at the emergency vet clinic. Max ended up getting 3 stitches in his paw.

Max was supposed to wear this cone for at least a week. He got it late Saturday night. The poor guy ran in to EVERYTHING with that thing on. He looked so depressed and wouldn't eat or go to the bathroom. Matthew took it off him Monday because he couldn't stand seeing Max in it anymore. Max did great and never tried to chew on his paw or bandage.
  • Canaan LOVES to open and close everything - doors, her phone, books, etc. Grandma taught her open and close when they kept her a couple of weekends ago.
  • She likes to play more (i.e. she teases us by "running" away from us).
  • She laughs at, climbs on and over, and teases Max.
  • When eating finger foods, Canaan will hold food out to Max, smile, and then put the food in her mouth.

11 months (April 23rd)

Out of all the portraits we've had made of Canaan at Target and JC Penney, I think these are my least favorite. It was really hard to get her to stay seated or standing without taking off in any direction. Now that she's really mobile, I have found it really hard to get good photos of Canaan. I still think these are cute because she's a cutie. My Aunt Bettie sent Canaan this outfit, and she can finally wear it. It was snowing the day we had these made, but I figured she should be wearing a springy outfit since it was the end of April.