Tuesday, September 23, 2008

first day of "shul"

Today was Noah's first official day of "pre-school prep" and it was very exciting! He's taking a little class 2 days a week at our local YM & YWHA. This was the same place that we attended a parent & me playgroup last winter, so I thought sending him back for this next step program would be a good transition into preschool next year (besides giving us something to do during the long winter that is quickly approaching!)

It's been amazing because he's actually in the same classroom that we were in as last year and a few of the same friends are in his class too. I'm definitely having a harder time with the transition than he is! On the first day, they had split the class in half and just met for half of the time with each group. The parents all stayed and it was nice to get to know everyone and go through a shortened version of their routine. It seemed as though they had the same thing planned on the second day, so I showed up expecting to stay, but the teachers casually asked us all to gradually leave and sit in the hallway so that the kids could start getting used to us leaving with a smaller group. Noah did great -- it was definitely me who was having the issues. And I definitely wasn't the only one! I sat out in the hallway with all of the other parents all huddled together worrying about our kids. Someone even thought to go peek at the security cameras in the lobby to see if we could catch a glimpse of them... so pathetic!

In any case, it's been going great so far! I think my biggest thing is just not being able to hear and see all the stuff that he's learning (especially now that his favorite phrase is, "I don't know!" -- not helpful when I'm trying to ask him what he did in school today!) It was really funny too, because after that second day when I left him, I asked him, "Noah, how was school? and he answered back... "Shul?" in perfect Hebrew. I'm obviously aware that they'll probably be teaching him some things like that because it is a Jewish Community Center... but who knew he'd be bilingual on the second day?!?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Oregon trip

We made it back from our post-summer-vacation to visit Jon's family in Oregon. We had originally planned to go in August, but then Jon's work told him that no one could take vacation in July or August... so, we pushed it back to leave on Labor Day weekend.

We had such a great time! I did some serious packing-prep... buying all kinds of new treats and little toys that would entertain Noah on the 6 hour flight (turned 8 hours). So, about every hour, he would get some kind of treat or toy that would usually keep him entertained for awhile. He was also fascinated with the seat belt buckles and the headphones they gave us on the flight (hey, whatever works!) Unfortunately, the portable DVD player didn't go over as well this time... he was too distracted by everything else to pay attention to it, so that was a bummer for us! Luckily he took a nice nap on both flights so there was some sort of break. But he really loved the plane and couldn't wait to "go to Ow-e-gon to see Nana and Gram-pa-pa!"

It was so nice to relax and and tons of help with Noah. He lovedlovedloved his grandparents and aunts and uncle (and getting to know "kitty kitty!" -- the very skittish family cat). We've visited them before but this is a very impressionable age for him and I really think it all finally sunk in. While we were in Portland, we had a great time hitting their awesome playgrounds, picking tomatoes, visiting grandpa's tree nursery, going to the zoo and the children's museum, wandering around downtown, and Noah especially loved being in the car... he's seriously obsessed! We also went to the coast for 4 days while we were there and had an amazing time. We stayed in a great house right on the beach and the weather totally cooperated with us (which if you know the Oregon coast, that can always be a gamble!) But everyday was gorgeous and there was no rain the whole time we were there. Noah had a great time digging holes in the sand, flying his kite, watching daddy and uncle Mike skimboard, playing in the water inlets and going to the aquarium. He even slept in a "big boy bed" while we were there.... granted, we put a railing on it and lined it with a bumper pad, so he really didn't think he could get out -- but I was amazed at how well he slept in it!

It was just so nice to be around family and also around my husband for more than an hour a day! Jon kept asking me what I wanted to do while we were in Portland, and I would just tell him that I was having fun just going to the playground and hanging out with him and Noah! So, it was a much-needed break from the city and our daily routine and SO nice to be around family. Jon and I were able to break away a lot and have some alone time too, which is always nice!

We had such a great time... thanks again everyone!

here are some pics:

stoked to be riding the tractor at gram-pa-pa's "farm"

Horey family initiation #1 ... picking fresh fruit and veggies

Horey family initiation #2... grinding wheat for homemade waffles!

checking out the polar bears at the zoo

riding the zoo train!

FAVORITE part... petting the goats!

washing the beloved "nana's car!"

playdate with baby O.

(a long-lost city friend!)

cooling off at the fountains

hanging out at the children's museum

(couldn't be torn away from this thing!)

feeding the ducks by the Willamette River

bravely petting starfish at the aquarium

watching the enormous kites on the coast

playing in an inlet of water at the beach

(cuz it was just too darn cold to play in the ocean water!)

yay for family fun!

**elevator update: Noah finally stopped talking about the broken elevator about 2 days after we got to Oregon (he was literally praying for it to be fixed every night!) And then the second we pulled up to our apartment in the cab, he starts whining, "ell-i-gator not workin'!" sure enough... he was right! so it continues...