Saturday, January 31, 2009

So different and the same

Hello! I can't believe it's been a week already! Ben and I are still getting used to saying things like "Sam", "the girls", "the kids", "family of four"...kind of like after we got married and had fun calling each other "husband" and " wife" just because it's brand new.

I'll admit we have slipped a couple of times and called Sam Katie, but I think we're getting used to it.

Here's some pictures...(apologies for some fuzzies...apparently lack of sleep doesn't help the camera skills any!).We love nearly naked newborn pictures...wish these could be "touch and feel" so you could feel how soft Sam's skin is...unbelievable!

Here's Katie opening up the present that Sam brought her (wink wink). A colouring book and some markers/ help ease the transition...though it's going so well (cross fingers) that I'm not sure we needed to worry. Katie keeps trying to "Kiss Sam on the head!".
Monday night Gram and Papa dropped by with the cake leftovers from my birthday dinner that was celebrated while I was hanging out in the hospital waiting for Sam to pee (did we tell you about that? They won't let you leave the hospital with your newborn until they poop and make sure things are working right...Sam held it and didn't pee until almost 24 hours after she was born...I really thought we would be spending another night in the hospital...Sam'e pee was teh best birthday present EVER!) Katie has mastered the singing of Happy Birthday and blowing out candles (like a dragon!). Auntie Andrea dropped by this weekand showed us she still knows how to hang with a newborn.
Super Auntie!

Katie's showing off the rainbow on the shirt from Auntie Andrea...such a cute shirt!
While we were bringing up some baby essentials, like the swing and the bouncy chair, we found and brought up the rocking chair that Ben's Grandpa Stan had made. It's stayed in the family and now it's our smooth! Katie loves it!Sam's still a bit too small...but she'll have her turn eventually. Gram and Grandpa and GG Lill stopped by this morning and we have pictures, but we'll same some for next time.

Seriously, things are going very well with the two kiddos. Katie has managed to sleep through any night time crying that Sam does (thank goodness...I was wondering how that would work!). Sam, to be honest, hasn't been that fussy or crying much yet...she did resist being put down to sleep a couple of nghts...wanted to be held instead...but we're figuring it out. Nursing is going very very well...we struggled a bit early on Katie and I, but now that I have some experience it's a bit easier.

It's amazing how much it feels like deja vu jhaving a little one again. Some things seem different but lots of similar. I can't explain it all (because I'm tired and tired of writing) but I'm sure I'll hav examples to blog about as time goes on.

Not sure how often we'll be blogging but we'll try. When not blogging, you can be sure we'll be thinking of you!

Monday, January 26, 2009


Here's a batch of pictures of Samantha just after being born being greeted by the family. They are completely out or order and I'll admit to complete laziness for not bothering to reorder them. We've gotten better pictures since we've been home but they're still on the camera. Everything is going very well and we'll try and post again soon with pictures and notes.

Special thanks to all the comments...really appreciate them!

Heather's Early Birthday Present

On January 24th at 7:42 pm Samantha ("Sam") Erin Luchkow (6 pounds eleven onces) entered the world. She has her mother's beautiful skin and her father's big toe. I brought them both home yesterday evening.

Heather was she always is. Katie got to meet her baby sister Sunday morning. She greeted her younger sibling with a "Hi Sam!!". I will try and post some pictures later this afternoon.

Heather, Katie and myself would like to pass on a special thank you to all of the people who helped us to get to this point: our parents, sister's, brother inlaws, grandma's (GG's), aunt's, uncle's, family friends, and collegues. Your kindness and generosity has touch our hearts and we look forward to having all of you meet the lasted Luchkow Lady!!

Heather is still trying to decide what the name of blog will be changed to....stay tuned.

Lots of Love and Heather and I will keep you posted on the ladies in our lives.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A non-update

Although I have no news to share, I felt a need to update the blog and officially tell you that we have no baby news yet.

Katie's new brother/sister is officially a day late. Katie was 5 days late, so perhaps I shouldn't be surprised? I feel like telling the baby "I know you have big shoes to fill, but there are other, better ways to be like your big sister. This is an opportunity to make your own mark...Ready, Set, Go!"

Regardless of the waiting, we are still doing well. (I feel bad for all you waiting least when things happen, we get to be the first to know!) Katie had a good time at playgroup today. The weather has, unfortunately, gotten much colder and so I baked a great batch of plain chocolate chip cookies tonight. Laundry is mostly caught up.

Katie has a fresh (this week) batch of library books that she is enjoying, including:
1. I Like Myself! (she does)
2. What Do You Do? (Hen-I lay eggs, Cheetah-I run fast, Beetle-I rock!)
3. Hands Are Not For Hitting! (not that Katie hits much, but occasionally, when frustrated she does smack something like the floor, and look at us, waiting for the "No". It's funny how much she likes this's got a nice focus on everything else that hands are good for, like eating, playing and waving.)
...and a couple of others I forget.

Anyway, I'm off to try and think of something that's NOT "Is the baby coming soon?". We'll let you know.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Naked and No News

Still No Baby!

We had a great weekend...Doing nothing much but having fun. (although, as always, after I think about it, we were really quite busy!)

We had a playdate on Friday with Shelley, Baby L and Jo Anne and her girls. Baby L was adorable and growing up fast...! Katie was a bit intrigued but not too "in baby's face" if you know what I mean. I did get a bit of a taste of how much we'll have to watch her around the new sibling as Katie once dropped something she was holding a little too close to Baby L that I felt was safe. But she was respectfully curious which was nice to see.

Jo Anne's girls had brought over their backpacks and C had dropped hers so Katie gave it a try. Here's Katie taking "Say Cheese" lessons from G.
Saturday I had a a lunch date with our friend Coreen and a bunch of her girlfriends ( some I knew, some I didn't) to celebrate her ___ birthday (shh...maybe I shouldn't mention which birthday?). It was nice to go out and have a nice long lunch with some fun ladies. Ben took Katie over to Gram and Grandpa's for lunch while I was out and I heard they had lots of fun without me. We also had a quick visit from our friends Russ and Steph in the afternoon...haven't seen them since way before the holidays and they were impressed with how much Katie has grown.

Yesterday, Katie took a few little spills while walking around the house (her first walking injuries!). On one she got a small cut on her chin and the other marked up her nose (her right side) and gave herself a fat left upper lip. It was sure weird/funny seeing her look like she'd been in a fight with someone. I tried taking pictures of it, but the way she moves around and everything, I just couldn't get the lighting/focus/subject working right to get the injuries to show up as clear in photos as they were in real life. (she is having a snack as well during those photos, so there's some chewing going on too!)

We also went for a swim in the morning (after the injuries)...ended up taking a chance at going out all the way to Millenium Place in Sherwood Park...would have liked to stay closer to home (and hospital, because you never know!) but none of our nearby pools had any free swim time in the morning. And we also looked into dropping in at the library but if they were open on Sunday, it wasn't until 1pm anyway. What a bummer...except that of course, we ended up at our favorite pool and indoor playground. Katie had a great time as always.

We also were lucky to have dinner at Gram and Papa's last night and Auntie Andrea and Nova were there. I held Nova for a while, trying to get a decent cuddle with this little excited puppy and she almost fell asleep in my arms. Practice for the new baby? (except that new baby's don't give you sloppy kisses all over your face right?) It's so sweet and can really tell that Nova loves Katie and gets excited watching her and following her around. Can't wait until they get older and can really play together. (Great Uncle Frank and Auntie Muriel were there was so nice to see them since we didn't see them over the holidays. Katie is still unsure of Uncle Frank, though she did say Hi a couple of times. Auntie Muriel is definitely a buddy!)

Today has been quiet. Katie played with toys and read books this morning. I tried (at the same time) to do some laundry and tidying up. I even managed to move the towel rack/shelf that we'd been keeping in Katie's closet to our bedroom closet. This was both to make room in her closet and give us full access to our towels. (At first it seemed to make sense having the towels in the room closest to the bathroom, but there's been WAY too many morning's where we've realized we needed towels from Katie's room but couldn't go in because she was still sleeping...usually we'd manage to find a clean towel still in the laundry room, but why chance it?!)
Anyway...While I was moving the rack/shelf, Katie dug around the toys in her closet and found a naked Barbie and spent much of the rest of the morning taking naked Barbie for walks, feeding her cookies and introducing us all to each other. I loved watching her play and use her imagination. And Katie was so nice and tolerant of Barbie's alternative "clothing optional" lifestyle...! There wasn't once any mention of why Barbie didn't have any clothes on. That's not at all weird right? Maybe I'll have to knit Barbie some clothes quick...before she can influence Katie too much. It's winter still you know...even though it's 2C above zero today, we still need to wear clothes!

Talk to you soon,

Friday, January 16, 2009

Mall Walker

As I start every phone call I make or pick up these days...

"No Baby Yet!"

We are patiently waiting and keeping busy. (official due date is Wednesday next week, Jan. 21)

We haven't taken many pictures lately since the camera is living in either the diaper bag or the hospital bag and we keep forgetting which.

We did remember to tale the camera with us last week when we went for a walk around the neighbourhood schools. Weather was looking warmer so we took advantage. This picture is to show the gorgeous moon that didn't quite appear in the photo above. Huge and bright.
Yay for family walks again!
Apologies for not flipping this photo's very upside down. Katie was making a mess at her desk...very much like most of us do I suspect!

Last night Ben was home early and we'd agreed that a lazy, store bought pizza night was in order. This enabled us to eat early and have time to head out to the nearby mall for a shop and a walk. I had not been in the mall in months...what a crazy thing to say! Southgatel is super close and often a nice place to walk to if the weather is nice, so usually we go more often than once every few months.

Anyway...we had a couple of items to return, on either end of the mall. Katie, very quickly, decided she'd rather walk than sit in the stroller. It's the first time we've had her walk while we shop...and it was FUN. She looked so excited seeing everything from her own two feet. Stopping where she wanted to to look at windows and walking to the left or to the right. She was pretty good at not straying far from us, and when she did she was quick to come back and walk with us when we asked her to. She walked with us from the elevator in the middle of the mall, to The Bay, to Sears and back to the middle elevator...for those of you that know the mall you know this is a lot of walking. Near the end she was getting red cheeks (she was wearing her boots which may have been a little warm) and looking tired though she did reject offers to go back in the stroller. It was a lot of walking for me too, who has not been walking anything near that much in quite a while. When we drove home she kept saying "Bye Southgate, thanks for the walking". It was so cute.

She and I went for another walk today, this time with her in the's So Absolutely Glorious outside...currently about 6C...that's 6 degrees ABOVE zero. The trees and roofs are dripping and I can see our actual front sidewalk where the snow's melted. Anyway, with the nice weather I felt we had to go out, so we walked over to Sunterra for a few small groceries and walked back. By the end of it I was exhausted! Katie must have been tired too since after lunch she played for a tiny bit but then ASKED to go lie down. I don't know that she's ever done that. Sleeping away right now. Gave me time to bake muffins and tidy up the living room a bit since Jo Anne and girls might be stopping by this afternoon.

Hope you're having a great Friday...and of course, we'll blog with baby news and a new blog name whenever we can!

Monday, January 12, 2009

It tastes so good in your mouth!

Hmm...I was silly and took no pictures from this weekend. The pictures that follow are from last week.

We had a nice/busy weekend. Dinner out with Gram, Papa, Auntie Andrea and Uncle Sheldon. Katie got some crayons and a little plastic cup to take home. She was very happy...but cried on the way out when I wouldn't let her hold the cup. She also did some restaurant walking, which I think will be a normal feature or our restaurant visits (those rare visits!) for the next while. (Funniest part of dinner: She walks around and looks at all the other diners and says "I'm walking!" really loudly and cutely)

Honestly, as I look back at the weekend I feel like she walked through the whole thing. We spend all day walking. Back and forth, around and around. It's amazing how much improvement happens so quickly. (though I suppose it comes from MONTHS of watching taking all know that's what she was doing instead of walking, right?)

I really can't remember what we did on Saturday for the moment...though I do know we went outside for a walk before dinner all 3 of us...Katie was in the Chariot wishing she was at the park walking...I was forgetting how little walking I've done recently and insisting we go all around the nearby school fields. Ben was suggesting I take it easy. I suppose I should say it officially...Ben you were was too much walking. I paid for it the next day with some sore muscles. (but was worth it anyway!)

Sunday we went to Gram and Papa's for breakfast (how could we not when we heard there were scones coming out of the oven!). The scones were so yummy that they were what prompted the "It tastes so good in your mouth" comment from Katie. Honestly, she said all that without us helping her. So cute.

We followed the visit with a quick trip to Costco...first time buying 2 sizes of diapers. And we definitely saw evidence that we "need" a van...didn't have room to buy paper towels along with everything else and two car seats and two parents. We're looking...Anyone have a Toyota Sienna (not too old) in good shape for reasonable price?

After Katie's great nap in the afternoon we went to Gram and Grandpa's for dinner. Pork roast was delicious and don't get me started on the cake (FYI...we did NOT eat the rest of the cake when we got home as I had indicated we might.). (Don't do this too when your parents send you home with leftovers, I know it.)

Here Katie looks cute reading a book, sitting in a box. And what's that in her hair?...'s a gorgeous little flower barrette from Gram and Grandpa's recent trip to Hawaii. How adorable is that?
And a picture of Katie trying to sit in another box, her toy box. She love sitting in her toy box.
Today was a bit of a slow one...though we did end up doing some laundry, putting some toys away (briefly), reading "Sweet Dreams" 18 times, making a double batch of Pumpkin scones and eating lunch.

While baking today , I learned two important lessons :
1. Katie likes to eat WHILE baking as much as I did when I was a kid. (flour, butter whatever...if it's used for baking it must be eaten apparently)
2. When it's close to lunch, Katie does not have the patience to understand that scones need time to bake and are not ready to be eaten immediately.

Katie is now about 40 min into a good solid nap and I may do the same very soon. =)

Happy Monday!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

It's getting better all the time...

The walking that is! Katie has spent most of this week practicing her walking.

We went to playgroup on Thursday with Papa and she walked with a little wire shopping cart (just the right size!) forever. One of the wheels was broken, so she did walk in circles a bit, but didn't seem to mind. She was smiling/giggling the whole time actually.

Yesterday she and I just stayed home. We baked some muffins (she helped add the measured dry ingredients to the bowl and helped mix). She tried tasting the flour mix but realized that finished batter tastes better than the dry ingredient mix. I also made up a recipe...chicken, black beans, red and yellow pepers, canned tomatoes and some spices...which turned out pretty good. The amazing thing was that Katie ate every bite...even the peppers! (she normally picks them out of everything) I think they were cooked just soft enough.

Here's a video I took of the walking yesterday. Things to note...
- she can navigate obstacles while walking
- we had music education going on (The Beatles...very important)
- the pajamas are Joe (Superstore) after Christmas cheapos...she took off the pants and seemed comfortable enough that I didn't make her put them back on right away. We do stay in pjs sometimes when we're not going anywhere...the fun of staying home!

K from BabyLuch on Vimeo.
She did this kind of walking for AGES yesterday. It's fun, she loves it...and it's getting better all the time! (say the Beatles)

Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Regular Tuesday

Katie's curly hair not being smooshed yesterday...resulted in almost exactly the kind of hair she normally has. It has not occurred to me that maybe she has MY hair, which, while somewhat wavy, generally requires heat or chemical coaxing to stay curly-ish. Neither or which I am ready to do to Katie. Now we know. =)

Our play date yesterday did work out and was wonderful...JoAnne and her girls came over and we were so happy. Haven't seen them since near the end of October I think. The girls have grown a lot since we last saw them (and JoAnne says Katie has too)...notably, at least one of the girls, G, is actually taller than Katie. This should perhaps be expected, given that they are 6 months older, but Katie has been taller than them for some time. (C didn't stay on one place long enough to compare).
There was lots of activity going on and still no organized, "playing together" type stuff...maybe still too young. There were some minor sharing issues which were resolved fairly quickly (because JoAnne and I are SuperMoms).
I (and I think Katie) really realized how much we missed hanging out with our friends. We're definitely looking forward to more playdates as we can arrange them.

Today, Katie and I went with Papa to PLAYGROUP (Katie sounds so excited when she says this)...I hadn't been since one time in the fall and Katie not since the holidays. Fun times...Katie was eager to play with things and see the kids. She climbed the three steps and went down the little slide all by herself (apparently the first time she has done this on her own) and was a very big, independent girl roaming around from toy to toy. Didn't show off much of her walking though...knees are still faster. Love's such a good thing for her!

(That reminds me...did we ever tell you the joke where we call her Katie Kneewalker? Like Luke Skywalker? Because she walks around on her knees so much. Not a great joke but still worth mentioning.)(And the poor knees of all her favorite jeans of hers have holes in them and most of her other pants are faded and dirty because of the kneewalking. Ah well!)

Hope you have a great day!

(Food Note: Made some shrimp fried rice with peas tonight, from our stir fry cookbook...Katie really seemed to enjoy it though both Ben and I thought it lacked a little flavour.)'s a bonus, extra video for you. Yesterday, I taught Katie the French version of "Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes" (Tete, Epaules, Genoux, Orteille...don't check my spelling there please!). I must point out that she actually does sing it better than she did for the video...a bit more practice now and she's pretty good...and even does the actions. Anyway, it's cute. Enjoy!

Tete from BabyLuch on Vimeo.

Monday, January 5, 2009

A January Quickie...blogging for dad.

Hi Dad!
We're sad you've had to go back to work today (though won't deny we like the money it gets you.).

If you look back to the very beginning of this blog, you'll see that some posts were definitely written to keep you updated about how we were doing at home. And in the spirit of tradition, it's not even 8 am and we've got a story for you.

You know how Katie woke up a little early this morning, around 6ish? Because she'd leaked a bit overnight and had a poop? (Thanks again for throwing the sheets in the wash, I'll go put them in the dryer as soon as I'm done the blog post). Well, I discovered that she'd somehow managed to get some poop in her hair. She just didn't smell as nice when I was hugging her and I looked around and discovered the source. Yuck. So I decided an immediate bath was in order (and tried to soak my feet at the same time but Katie wasn't in the mood to share her bath).

Now she's nice and clean and smelling wonderful. And her hair is So Curly! Usually we bathe her at night and the hair gets all crazy and smooshed overnight, so I'm excited to see how the hair curls up when it's not smooshed. (what a fun word, smooshed!...although not recognized by the spell check!). Here's a picture:
Anyway, better Get That Laundry (lately Katie's been saying "Get That _____") and pay attention to the girl. Haven't heard about our potential playdate yet but I've got my fingers crossed.

Talk to you later!
Mom and Katie

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Happy 2009!
How did we spend our New Year's Eve? Ben and I have a tradition of having very low key NYEs...this year wasn't too much of an exception. We just stayed home and relaxed. We didn't make it up until midnight either, but that's normal for us!

Katie seems to be showing her wild side and wanting a more exciting New Years. I took videos, but accidentally deleted them (I won't tell you what I said when I did this, only that I'm really glad she chose not to learn that word!), what you see below is merely a reenactment:

Untitled from BabyLuch on Vimeo.

K from BabyLuch on Vimeo.
It was the best walking she'd done to date and we were all pretty excited. Since then she's practiced quite a bit. The most exciting thing for me, is how she initiates it...controls her own balance and chooses when she wants to walk. Such a powerful taste of independence I would imagine! Katie walked like that for a good half hour this morning...back and forth and back and forth. Afterward, she had some well deserved pear for a snack.
And in other news...

It's crazy cold today...we're not leaving the house unless we have to. (really?...what else is new?)

Ben and I have spent some time the past couple of days prepping some baby food for freezing. (that is food for when the new baby arrives, not food FOR the new baby!)(we made burritos and chicken cheddar salsas, yum!)

I made some play dough the other day, just to try it out and see if Katie would enjoy playing with it...pretending to bake cookies etc. It was fun though there was a lot of enjoyment that came simply from squishing the dough. We used cookie cutters, a rolling pin and a garlic press to make fun shapes.
Katie's had a lovely string of nights completely sleeping through and having 2-3 hour afternoon naps. We were worried when she had three days without an afternoon nap (Dec 25, 26 and 27th) but now we're pretty sure it was Christmas excitement. And the for the month of so before that with her having a cold etc, she was waking up a bit more than usual at night. Now it seems we're back on track.

We had New Years Day dinner at Gram and Papa's. After dinner, while the adults were chatting, Katie sat in her desk (her high chair converts to a desk...the coolest high chair ever!) and played "casino" with a tiny pack of playing cards that came in the Christmas Crackers...all of the sudden we heard her counting..."One...Two...Three..." all the way to 11...It's always neat to hear her spontaneously do thing like that that apply her knowledge.
Yesterday we had a great dinner out with Jon and Shelley and Baby L. It was nice to get together with the kids and visit. Baby L slept through most of it (he's 2.5 months) and Katie behaved very well. She played with crayons, a train we brought and walked around the restaurant a few times.
I've also had a great time the past few evenings knitting a scarf with some yarn that Grandpa Ken picked out for me for's the most gorgeous, easy, fun scarf I've ever knit. I'll be sure to show it off when it's done.

Holidays are so great. Sad to think it's Saturday and Ben goes back to work on Monday. Hope you are enjoying what's left of your holiday just like we are!

PS...I apologize for not fixing the red eyes in the photos (or doing any editing on the videos)...I'm supposed to do more of that now that I have my awesome new laptop, but sometime, I'd rather just blog and get it done a little faster...I'll try and be better about that in the future because, really, not much wrecks a good picture like some red eye! =)