February

Wow –  I forgot I’d written this and never got around to posting it. Sorry! But I’ll post it anyway even though it was a month ago. And I’ll write a recent one!

 

Sorry it’s been so long between posts again! Life really runs away with me at the moment. Busy busy busy!

Well we finally got over our sicknesses, and I climbed out of the little pot-hole I thought I was in, and life is feeling a bit easier. A few main points about what’s been happening the last few weeks:

1. We bought a car! It has been great – given me a lot more freedom, even thought the public transport system is great here, still is a bit easier with Sylvie to quickly run down to Bed Bath and Beyond etc to pick up a few things, rather than having to allow the whole afternoon to catch the L train and walk a few blocks, and then lugg everything home. We ended up getting a Hyundai Tucson – not sure if they have them in Aust? It’s kinda a medium-sized AWD. In silver 🙂 I like it! And I’m gaining confidence in driving the streets and knowing how to get around. We went away for the weekend a couple of weeks ago to Northern Indiana – a couple of hours drive away. It’s Amish country, so it was great to see real live Amish going about their daily business with their black buggies and horses. Felt like a movie! Beautiful countryside, and great food.

2. All our stuff came from Sydney finally – gosh why did we bring/need all this stuff??! When we’ve been living with the basics for a couple of months, it seems a bit silly having so much stuff! Trying to cull as I unpack, but still hard to let go. Think we’ve only got 7 boxes to unpack, so we are almost there!

3. Mum and Dad arrive in 3 days!! Can’t wait. Will be great to see them, and I really can’t wait for them to see Sylvie and how much she has grown and changed since we left Sydney in October. She’s almost walking now – loves holding your finger and walking along. She understand so much now – already! It blows me away as I still feel like she’s just a baby.

Some of the things she is doing: She sticks her tongue out when you ask her where her tongue is. Points to your nose and your ear when asked. Plonks her socks on her feet if she sees them lying around. Knows to go find her ball or ducky when you ask her to. Incredible really! (I’m sure experienced parents are used to this, but as a first-timer it’s just amazing to watch!)

4. Am making some lovely friends here. Which is great, considering it’s Sylvie’s first birthday in a week so I have people to invite to her  party!

5. My month without sugar was HARD! I was pretty good – especially for the first 2 weeks. Have had some slip-ups in the last two weeks, but on the whole has been a good challenge. Crez has done incredibly well with his Febfast – I’m so proud of him! We’ve both been eating healthily this month and lost weight to show for it, which is great! Now I’m almost back to pre-baby weight – only a few kgs to go.

Sylvie has been sleeping really well – we’ve decorated her room a little bit and she’s now sleeping in the “big cot” rather than the last 6 months in the travel cot! Feel a bit bad for her – she went from the bassinet to the travel cot and then finally into the normal cot at 11 months! Poor girl.

 

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Sick, sick, sick and more sick

Well it’s been a tough couple of weeks! Actually I should start before then….

We went to Mexico! Yay! It was fun – didn’t do too much, lazed around in the sun, took Sylvie swimming in the pool. Ate, ate, ate. Sylvie was the hit. Everybody LOVED her, and she them back. I think she really loved all the interaction with people, rather than just me and crez day in, day out. We stayed at Cabo San Lucas (basically a resort town full of Americans and Canadians) which although was very touristy, was still nice to get away.

We had my birthday while we were down there – and crez took me swimming with dolphins to celebrate! It, of course, was amazing. We were also lucky enough to time our holiday with our friends Caz and Kingos, so we were able to catch up with them a couple of times.

Unfortunately poor Crez got gastro while we were down there so spent a couple of days in bed (dodgy Mexican food? 🙂 so that put a bit of a dampner on our fun. But it was still nice to escape the snow and cold for a week, and put Sylvie in all her cute dresses that she will probably have outgrown by the time summer gets here. While we were gone Chicago had a huge dump of Snow (8 inches or something) so we were welcomed back to heaps of snow on the ground. (Yes the novelty is still there!)

Now for the not so fun part – Sylvie comes down with gastro a couple of days after we get back – high temperature, spewing, grizzling, poor love. So after a few days of nursing her she gets better, then I come down with it and feel like death. Thankfully I managed to time it just as the weekend gets here, so Crez was able to look after Sylvie. Then, just as I start to see the light, Sylvie gets a temperature again and has now come down with a really crusty cold and cough. So, still no sleep for the (very) weary. So basically we’ve had 2 weeks of Sylvie or me sick at any one time. I just want some sleep! 😦 I really hope she gets better soon. Don’t really know what to do, as this is only the 2nd cold she’s ever had, and is a lot worse than the last one. Last night was tough – she was up every hour, inconsolable until I breast-fed her. So it’s been a bit hard, and I’d really like a break. Now wondering if moving half-way around the world was such a good idea after all. I’m a bit homesick!

Anyway, sorry about the vent. I’m sure it will all be rosy once we are all better, but right now even the littlest things seem to be a struggle. And add to all that, hanging over me is the darn study I need to do to pass the veterinary board exam in April – I know seems like a long way off, but at the moment I’m only managing an hour every couple of days and I really cant remember ANYTHING! ugghhhhh. AND I haven’t done any crochet in AGES 😦 big sad face.

Phew – well at least you all know how I’m feeling. A bit overwhelmed, underenthused, and really missing the comforts of home! Now that I’ve thoroughly depressed all of you, here are some cute Sylvie photos to cheer you up!

Poor sick baby. finally asleep in our bed.

This last photo is the slice of chocolate cake Crez bought me to cheer me up. I should have put something next to it so you could see the size, but the foil takeaway container it’s in is the size of a large dinner plate. I honestly had 1/6 of it as a “normal” sized dessert. Hilarious.

That reminds me. It’s now February and Crez and I have both committed to do FebFast. For those not in the know, it’s a month without drinking alcohol, raising money for alcohol-abuse-related charities. I’ve decided that not drinking alcohol for a month really wasn’t that hard for me – It’s been 18 months of pregnant/breastfeeding so I’m pretty used to laying off the hard drinking 😉 So I’ve decided to give up sugar for a month. I’m only 2 days in and it’s HARD. So please sponsor us – makes it much easier to stick to if I know people are behind us! Here is the link – http://www.febfastfundraising.com.au/cresswells_in_chicago

Hope all is going well down under – hear that you’ve had a bit of rain? 😉

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Some pretty snow pictures and Sylvie

So this is the view I am looking at out our lounge windows – sooooo beautiful. I love snow! Makes me feel like I’m on holiday at the snow fields. This is our first big major snowfall – it’s been coming down pretty heavily for the last few hours and they think there will be 8 inches all up. It’s awesome!

The dogs first real snow day! They were so funny – I made snowballs and they got all excited jumping around chasing them, and Sylvie was sitting in her stroller squealing with laughter. So funny. I’ve put a couple of videos on facebook (can’t seem to upload them on this blog site) but they aren’t the best quality anyway as it’s hard to make, then throw the snowballs at the same time as holding the phone steady to make a movie!

 First tracks of the day! This was this morning on our way to playgroup when the snow had just started. Think I might need to buy a stroller with bigger wheels, as I was seriously out of breath by the time I got to playgroup (not even 10 min walk) as it was very difficult to push the stroller through snow!

Sylvie is standing up and walking with her walker she got for christmas (although usually results in her axing herself) – amazing how quickly she learns stuff. I’ll post some videos of that on facebook as well. She loves her playgroups and it’s been a lovely way to meet some mums (moms). Still happy, still smiling. Saying “dog” 🙂 so cute. A lot of work though! Think I need a holiday – so can’t wait for my mum and dad to come over in March. 🙂

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Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all! (Except here everyone says “Happy Holidays” and I was hard-pressed to find a chrissy card to buy that actually said “merry christmas” – annoying!)

Well sorry again for the blog-silence. We moved into our new place the week before Christmas, and we are really happy with it. Of course it snowed the day we were moving stuff across – but that made for some lovely first photos out of our window…

This is a photo of the communal courtyard – the squirrels play in the trees so there is lots for Sylvie to watch (and also for the dogs to watch too – more on them in a minute!). And if you can see through the trees – Wrigley Park, home of the Chicago Cubs baseball team, is approximately a 3 minute walk away. Crez = pretty happy.

Our new street – walking in the snow! It really is still such a novelty and I’m quite excited by it. Unfortunately it hasnt snowed since the week before christmas, so all the chicagoans are really enjoying their “mild” winter (still about 0C most days). But fingers crossed there are some snow days ahead. So we didn’t get a white Christmas, unfortunately!

The funny girl all rugged up for the snow – yes she has mittens too which she is very good about wearing – actually I don’t think she has worked out that she can get them off yet, so that’s a good thing!

So this is our very empty living room – waiting for all our stuff to get here from Sydney. Unfortunately there was a delay with it leaving Syd so we are living with the bare essentials at the moment. But it’s fine – done a lot of shopping on Amazon…. lifesaver that!

So a couple of days before Christmas our pups arrived – such a long trip for them, I felt really bad! But they bounced out of their crates, tails wagging and very happy to see us. Sylvie was equally excited to see them – they had not seen her crawling yet, but they are being very patient with her crawling all over them. They have settled in fine – really just plonked themselves down on their new beds and went to sleep. I can’t wait to see what their reactions are to the snow (when it finally snows!). Will make sure to get some video and photos.

 

So Christmas snuck up on us after all that excitement, and before we knew it there were presents to open and yummy food to eat. We just had a quiet day – just the 3 (sorry dogs, 5) of us and a teeny tree. But lots of presents from some very generous family and friends. Thankyou for thinking of us all the way over here!

So we just had a quiet one – made a yummy late lunch and opened presents. Sylvie was hilarious – didn’t know which present to play with first – would play with one for about 5 seconds, then spot the next new one and play with that… and on and on. She was thrilled with everything and is already standing up and taking some tentative steps with her walker from Nana and Dida (seen in background of the photo above). I wonder if she will be walking before she’s 1?

A well-earned nap after so much playing. The towel under her is in case of emergency spew. She had gastro the couple of days before Christmas – not a pleasant experience I’ll tell you!

Which toy next?? So happy.

Anyway, apart from all of that, Crez got his Illinois Drivers Licence, we’ve been looking for cars to buy, and thinking of planning a quick getaway in January sometime. Oh and I have applied to sit the Vet board exams in April, so have started studying again. Sigh – will it ever end??

Not much crochetting been happening here – not for lack of wanting. Have some babies due in the next few months that I really wanted to have baby blankies for but it looks like they will be late.

Anyway – loving all the news from home. Miss you all! xx

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Hellooooo winter

Hello all (yes stu, it’s been quiet in blogland :))

So – the exciting news this week is that we had our first real snowfall of the season during the week! (For those of you who also follow my facebook updates sorry this is old news for you). It seems that everybody is obsessed with weather here – though judging by the number of facebook updates complaining about the current weather in Sydney, I’d say it is a world-wide obsession.

Anyway, everybody has been looking forward to the first snowfall – the news told me that there were only 5 years in recorded history that the first day of snow was later than this. Personally – it was awesome! We only got a little bit (0.5inch) but it was enough to coat everything in an icing of white. We haven’t had any more yet, but I can’t wait for more. Will definitely take a photo of Sylvie sitting in the snow in her snow suit.

So I can’t remember if I told you that we got a place to live? It’s a lovely 3 bed townhouse, so we move in next weekend which is awesome. I’ve been running around trying to find things like furniture and baby gates etc. Not that easy with a crawling baby, public transport, and no local knowledge, but we’ve managed. So we’ve got a spare bedroom that will be all ready for visitors… get in quick!

Another reason I can’t wait to move in is that the doggies are coming on the 22nd December! I’ve missed them so much, and can hardly bear to wait another 10 days. I can’t wait to see what they think of the snow (and the squirrels!) too. I’m sure seeing Sylvie crawling everywhere will be a shock for them – hopefully they will cope.

Some photos:

My new haircut. Hard to see in this photo against a dark background – sorry!

Yummmo pumpkin french toast with cream cheese swirl for breakfast on the weekend …. not on the weight watchers list but oh so yummy (as you can see by the size of my grin!). Oh and that was the old haircut, so not the new one.

And this pair are the newest members of our family – gorgeous snow boots with furrrrrr! They are toasty and yummy. Though I did feel like a bit of a dork wearing them on the days before it snowed – but now that it has actually snowed I feel vindicated in wearing them.

Oh and my gorgeous blanket for Sylvie is so very close to being finished – I have run out of wool for the border, so I think a lovely outing to the yarn shop is on the to-do list this week. yay! (Orders taken :))

Sylvie likes her blanket.

Now here is another wonderful discovery I made – on the train stations they have heaters installed in parts, you press a button activating the timer and stand under them until your train comes! Genius!

And now some gorgeous Sylvie photos taken by Chris. I did tell you she started crawling, didn’t I? Well now she’s hooning around at 100mph, getting into all sorts of mischief. She’s already smashed a lamp, jammed her fingers in drawers, hit her head a million times. Feel a bit tired having to watch/entertain her all day, as otherwise she finds her own fun. It will be better when we are in our place as i’ll be able to baby-proof it a bit better. She’ also pulling herself up to standing on EVERYTHING, which is ridiculously cute and she stands up there laughing  being so proud of herself. Too cute. I wonder when she’ll start walking.

Anyway… signing off for now. Loving all the comments! xxx

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Baby it’s cold outside

Hello from Blogland!

We have had a lovely week here in Chicago. It all started with Chris and Eve driving from Pennsylvania to come and stay with us for Thanksgiving. We loved seeing them, and got to do some good catching up over a very successful roast turkey (recipe here in case you are interested! http://www.taste.com.au/recipes/11680/roast+turkey+with+pistachio+couscous+stuffing) I was a bit worried about how it would turn out – but it actually was super duper yummy! And I did another pumpkin pie too – perfect again! (pumpkin pie recipe here: http://glutenfreeeasily.com/crustless-gluten-free-pumpkin-pie/ but I didn’t do it gluten free, just used regular flour).

So after stuffing ourselves silly on Thursday, we all got to do some touristy things on Friday – we went on an architecture tour on the chicago river – it was fantastic and I will definitely be recommending it to any and all of our visitors in the future. On Friday night Eve and I went to an interesting play – Peer Gynt. I say it was interesting because a) I didn’t understand 90% of what was happening, and b) Eve and her other drama teacher friend didn’t either, so I didn’t feel as dumb! But it was great to get out anyway.

Some photos from thanksgiving….

Pre-photo of the bird with pancetta all over it – yum!

The thanksgiving feast!

 

Sylvie’s t-shirt says “My first thanksgiving” – i looked for a matching one in my size too… 🙂

And look who can stand up now – she got herself up there too!

And… another big development – She’s crawling! She decided all of a sudden on Friday that she was ready to go – and off she went! So cute.

Oh and I almost forgot – we got a place to live! Yay! Move in a couple of weeks. It’s about 10 mins north of the city, really close to the train stop so should be easy for Crez to get to work. I’ll definitely give you all a tour when we move in. So that’s a big relief for me, AND I’m so excited to get the doggies over here! yay!

So we’ve had lots happen in the past couple of days. I’ve also done most of the chrissy shopping – online of course – SOOOO handy. We did buy a few things in the Black Friday sales too(how could you not?!), but thankfully avoided getting pepper-sprayed in the process.  I bought some snow boots today – soooo excited and can’t wait for it to snow now! Will post a photo when crez can take one of me in them.

And…. finally the cutest photo ever… yes it’s getting a bit chillier – predictions of more snow flurries over the next couple of days.

Sylvie in a snow suit that’s just a little bit too big.

Sorry, my mistake … HERE is the cutest photo ever…

hahaahaaahah – so cute!

 

 

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One month gone already!

It honestly seems like yesterday but we landed in Chicago a month ago! Amazing how the days all merge and you never get anything done. Except maybe crochetting 🙂

It’s Thanksgiving on Thursday, so we have our lovely (Aussie) friends Chris and Eve coming up from State College, Pennsylvania for the long weekend. It will be lovely to see them! We’ve bought a turkey, and I did a test-run of the pumpkin pie tonight (result= resounding success!) I did a crustless pumpkin pie (cause, honestly, who really likes the crust anyway!) and it’s delicioso.

We’re still looking for a place to live – and it’s getting me down. It’s sooooo tiring doing it with Sylvie on my hip (getting her organised, and keeping her happy while getting her in and out of carseats – uggghhhh.) Though I shouldn’t complain – she is such a little trooper and usually so happy about it all. I am so thankful that Caz has been able to mind her one of the times I went out, so I will have to take her up on her offer again as it was so much easier without having to worry about her. We were all set to go for a place, but the owners came back and said they wanted to sell it instead of renting it out, so we didn’t get it. Gutted! Really want to set up house and lay some roots, and get my dogs back too! I miss them and their furry faces.

So anyway, have playgroup/mothers group tomorrow, and then going out with the real estate agent again on Wednesday. If you could pray we find somewhere that would be awesome!

On the praying side of things – haven’t even started looking for a church yet – it is next on the to-do list.

I am excited as I did a bit of damage to the credit card with all the online shopping I did last week. So it all gets delivered this week!Yay!

Interesting observation of the week: we went into “Best Buys” (like a Good Guys back home – electronics superstore) and I noticed that while they had 2 whole aisles of coffee percolators, and other kitchen electrics, I couldnt find even ONE electric kettle. Even looking on Amazon to buy it online, reading all the comments it really seems like it’s a novelty item in American kitchens – I really find it so odd!

Anyway time for some photos:

“All I want for christmas is my two front teeth” – Thanks Santa for the early Chrissy present!

We went for a walk to Soldier Field (the ground where the Chicago Bears play – they are “our” american football team)

The ice skating rink is up! I want a turn!

The smiley girl all rugged up.

And finally – you cant really see them but Hayley and the guy with the beard from last years American Idol came to town (think they are native Chicagoans). I was just a little bit excited 😉

And a bit of my latest crochet project – needed a break from the blanket. It’s a cowl/loop scarf I made for Caz.

Sorry Caz – had to try it on! 🙂

Ok new hairstyle thoughts? I photographed this style out of a mag – what do you think? maybe not as blonde as that though! Would it suit me? Desperately need a haircut/facial/make-up overhaul to help with the soul! 🙂

Oh and lastly got a wonderful wonderful present from my wonderful sister – arrived just as I started to feel homesick, so thankyou! Beautiful necklace. Love it! Unfortunately Sylvie loves the beads too so we are starting to teach her “no”. She looks at me shocked for about 5 seconds, and then does a huge smile. Hard for me to keep a stern face!

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