The Lively Luke

My two year old continues to amaze, impress and drive me crazy at the same time.  He is almost at the stage where we can really communicate to each other and yet there are still so many moments when I am clueless about what he trying to tell me.  Sometimes I can see the frustration come out on his face when he just can’t get his message across to me.  Sometimes it requires a translator, which sometimes Jared is the only one who understands what he is saying.  I don’t know how he does it, but my four year old can pretty much figure out what Luke  is trying to say most of the time.

Luke fluctuates from trying to do everything himself and then wanting help.  He goes back and forth between following his big brother around as his shadown and copying everything he says or does and….simply running away to do his own thing.  Unfortunately, his own thing is usually getting into something or some drawer that Mommy has spefically forbidden.

My newest challenge is keeping him with me when we go into big retail stores of some kind.  I’ve begun making use of a rainbow colored wrist band that looks slightly like a leash.  I call it “Luke’s special bracelet” and we let Luke wear it so that Mommy won’t run away from him.  This line seems to keep him pacified when he finds himself restrained to a few feet from mommy’s side even as Jared runs and jumps circles all around us.

One day at the department store, I found Luke was talking and babbling to himself and realized he was trying to strike up a conversation with a nearby headless manikin.  Before I finally persuaded him to come with me, he said “Good-bye” to the manikin and blew it a kiss.

Currently, I’m trying to get him potty trained.  We aren’t quite there yet, but I think we are getting closer.

Luke greets me from inside a playground toy.

My First Christmas Present

The schedule of ultrasounds has changed since I gave birth to Jared.  Or at least, that is how my obstetrician tells me.  With both Jared and Luke, the first important ultrasound did not take place any earlier than 16 weeks into the pregnancy.  Now, my doctor tells me that the crucial time to do the first thorough ultrasound is between 11 to 13 weeks.  He insisted that this is the important window in discovering any possible early defects in the development of the baby.  However, it is also too early to find out the gender of the baby.

My doctor also insists that it is important to have an ultrasound for each trimester.  So, I was going to have to wait until the second trimester ultrasound to find out if I was having a girl or a boy.  During my November check up, my doctor said that we should probably go ahead and schedule the second trimester ultrasound for sometime in December. 

“Maybe the middle of December sometime…what do you think?”

I looked up at him sheepishly and said, “Well, my husband is going to be in the U.S. during the first week of December.  It would be nice, if he could return with specific clothes for a baby boy or a baby girl.  But doing the ultrasound then would be too early, right?”

The doctor scratched his head for a minute or two and looked at his calendar.  He starting thinking out loud about how many weeks pregnant I would be at that time.  By the end of the first week of December, I was going to be 22 weeks pregnant. 

Finally, he said, “Alright, how about the first day of December?  Then, you can call Stephen in the U.S. and tell him what to bring back down.”

I was completely thrilled to hear the news and began to count down the days to my next ultrasound.  The weekend before December 1, Stephen and I put up the Christmas tree and pulled out our Christmas music and our Christmas decorations.  So, I really felt like I was in the Christmas mood when I went to see my doctor for the ultrasound.

I tried not to act too antsy or impatient as he went through the routine process of checking the baby’s head, face, legs, arms and vital organs before checking the area of gender discovery. 

“So, what do you think it is?” he asked me as I looked at the screen of a squirming little body with its legs spread wide open. 

I wasn’t sure what to assume.  It didn’t exactly look the same as Jared and Luke, but I was afraid to get too excited. 

“It’s not a boy?” I asked lamely.

“It’s a girl!” he told me confidently and then typed “xx” on the screen.

I could hardly believe it was true.  “Are you sure?” I asked him. 

He pointed to the screen to show me where obvious male organs were missing and where you could clearly see that the child was a female.  My heart leapt. 

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I love both of my sons very much and I wouldn’t trade them for the world.  But I had felt for many years that God was going to bring a daughter into my life and that I was to name her Grace.

And there she was on the screen.  She will be our little “GEM” because her initials (Grace Erin Meier) spell that word.  Jared and Luke already refer to her as baby Grace.  I don’t know if Luke really understands much of what is going on, but I think he will be a wonderful big brother when our little GEM comes into the world in another three months or so. 

As my doctor finished the ultrasound, he said what a pleasure it was to do my ultrasound and that everything was “immaculate” with the baby’s progress and growth.  I felt double blessed.  Not only am I expecting a daughter, but she is healthy, as well.

Cristina poses at 25 weeks of pregnancy on Christmas eve.

The World of Baby Luke

As the New Year begins, there are two things that Luke Evan Meier is approaching: his first birthday and his first steps.  Although it appears that he will reach his first birthday before he reaches his first steps. 

Luke may not walk yet, but he loves to climb.  At least, he loves to pull himself into a standing position on whatever object is closest to him.  If it is Mama or Dad’s leg, Luke will climb up and cling for as long as he can.

 Jared has a little walker that he used to help him learn to walk.  However, he refused to give it up and let Luke use it until Christmas day.  That was when we officially wrapped up the walker and told Jared that he was giving Luke the walker as a gift for Christmas.

Of course, this was incomprehensible to our toddler.  Jared cried and cried when he saw his brother open his new gift and play with it.  Jared would not be pacified until he opened his big gift from Mama and Dad.  Once he saw the little fire engine scooter, he became quite happy to give up the walker. 

Jared and Luke test this toy before Mama decides to purchase it.

Luke is still trying to get the hang of the walker.  Most of the time the walker ends up going a little faster than his little legs can walk.  I’m sure he’ll get the hang of it soon.

Luke has six teeth already and two more coming in and is having fun exploring the world of solids.  He’s doing so well that Mama is considering weaning him in the next few months.

Luke’s vocabulary is expanding, too.  He knows how to say “Mama,” “Dada” “bye,” and his favorite word of all, “Yaba-daba.”  We don’t even watch the Flintstones, so I don’t know where he picked up this phrase.