My blog - November 2008

August, September, October, November and we step foot into December soon...

November 26th 2008, 7:05pm

Lots of things have happened since I last blogged. James changed the format of my blog for me so that I could post my blog stories to facebook. Alas, I have forgotten how to gain entry to my blog to post new stories. So now I have some catching up to do!

In August, we met my parents in London to bid them farewell. They had a great time travelling around Europe and I've gotta say I'm proud of them for doing it the same way I did, with backpacks, a tent and a month train pass. Not many parents are up for that kind of mad adventure, but mine certainly seemed up for it! We only had a day and a bit with them before they had to fly back to Canada, so we puttered around London a bit more together, went on the London Eye and just generally enjoyed ourselves. For those of you who know my mom, check out her facebook page, she's posted a fair few photos. After we dropped them off on their train to their flight (sounds callous, but it was the best way for them to get to the airport from Central London!), we hopped in our car and made our way south. We had decided to have a nice little bit of weekend in Kent. Why Kent?

Well, my dad's grandpa (his father's father) was born in Kent, and as James and I are both into geneaology, we thought we'd go have some fun tracking the Wood family down. The Centre for Kentish Studies houses lots of family tree info, and that Saturday was the one Saturday that month it would be open. So we took my laptop and crammed in as much research as we could! We managed to find the house my great-great grandfather worked in as a 15 year old, and the estate where my great-great grandmother lived with her family. Pretty cool that the buildings are still standing. Their owners even brought us inside and showed us around, which was cool. We also found lots of names and birthdates to add to my family tree, so it's grown again!

My passport arrived at the end of August, which meant I could take my Life in the UK test and get the ball rolling on my visa. In order to get my permanent residence visa, I had to take a test to see if I know enough about life in the UK. Things like what percentage of the population is white, is Jewish, lives in Scotland, all sorts of random stuff no Brit I know knows! I felt like throwing up while I waited to find out whether I had passed, Which I did, thank goodness, though it's the only test besides a Driver's test that has ever truly unnerved me. So we began putting all the information together for my application. They don't ask for as much information as they did for my inital visa, but it's still a fair bit of stuff to put together. We packaged up all they had asked for, along with our passports and sent them off. More to follow on this story later...

September also brought something else along. Something that we'd been hoping would occur. We found out, much to our joy and satisfaction, that we weren't going to be just the two of us for much longer. About 36 weeks more alone just the two of us at that time! Yup, if you're not on facebook (who isn't?) and you haven't heard, we're expecting our first addition to our family May 19th. Little "Stig", as we're calling him/her until he/she is born (I got tired of calling it "It") is healthy and I'm 15 weeks into the pregnancy now. And not a bit of morning sickness, which is lovely. I was absolutely exhausted from about week 7 until last week or so, but I'm feeling like my old self again. Oh, if you don't know the British program "Top Gear", Stig is their "tame racing driver". We thought it was a funny name while the kiddo's in utero. We're not going to find out whether it's a boy or girl until it arrives on the scene. But if you can think of initials that should NOT go in front of Ots, please let us know... ie. S.P.Ots or C.L.Ots, etc

I also started in a new position at work. Same school, although it has a different name now. I'm working in a library of a secondary school, which is pretty darn ideal for me, considering how I love working with kids and how much I love reading! It could only be better if it was a primary school, but I can live with that! :)

October, October, did anything happen in October? Hmmm. Nope, can't think of anything.

November 5th we went in for my 12 week ultrasound. Something several people were looking forward to for various reasons. We were looking forward to seeing Stig for the first time and to being able to tell people I am pregnant. My mom and sister were looking forward to being able to tell anyone and everyone! It was so cool looking at our baby for the first time, seeing that little heart beating away. It was all cuddled up, sucking it's thumb, having a snooze by the looks of things (takes after Mommy) when the ultrasound started. The tech had to keep prodding my belly to get the baby to wake up and move around so she could get a good measurement! We heard Stig's heartbeat for the first time last night. My sister-in-law, Becky, lent us their Doppler fetal heart monitor and James had fun trying to find where our kidlet was located so we could hear it best. We even recorded it on my computer and I've put it on facebook (go to the Boxes tab) so people can have a listen if they like. It sounds something in between a steam train, a galloping horse and like our kid is holding a rave in my womb.

I turned 29. Eek! The big 3-0 next year. Good thing I'm sneaking a kid in before then, huh? I had a lovely birthday, the best I've had in Britain yet. Everyone was so lovely, and I had cards and sweets and hugs and all those things that make birthdays nice. We went out for fondue (cheese and oil- too stuffed to fit in the chocolate one afterwards) with some friends later on after work and had a lovely time schmoozing around the table. I love fondues for that, they really are good for conversation, cause you can't stuff your face fast!

December is nearly upon us. Unfortunately, we couldn't afford to fly out to Canada for Christmas AND next summer with the baby, so we gave my family the choice. Everyone but my brother voted for the summer. Bro, if we could afford it, we'd be there with you in a few weeks. Alas, it's not in the cards, so we'll just have to hold out until the end of June! And I can't WAIT!!!!! I do wonder if I'm completely crazy, planning on taking a 9 hour flight with a one month old baby, but I'm crossing my fingers that little Stiggy takes after Mommy and sleeps well on a plane. And gets Mommy's cast-iron stomach and is a good eater. Should help out a bit!

Remember that visa? Well, we had been waiting for it to come back to us. Usually it only takes 4 weeks, but if it doesn't, it can take 17 weeks. Go figure. We had booked a cheap flight to Bratislava for November 20th, and were going to rent a car and drive to the Czech Republic and Vienna, Austria as well, since they're only 60 kilometres apart. Alas, our passports did not make it back in time. So we sent Allison off to Bratislava alone, and decided to go to Norfolk instead. We found a lovely hostel, Deepdale, and had a great time taking pictures of all the scenery, waterfowl, windmills and lighthouses in the area. We even had snow on Saturday evening, so Sunday morning there were some really nice shots to be had. There are a couple of books James read over and over as a kid that took place in the Norfolk Broads, so we drove around to a few of the villages they were set in. It was pretty neat to see how accurate some of the sketches from the books were. Oh, and we had some delicious food, too. The best moules mariniere since Scotland. Mmmmmm.

When we got home, there was a delivery notice on the floor. They had tried to deliver a package Saturday. We went to the post office on Monday after work to pick it up. When I opened the package, I reached in and pulled out our passports, and flipped through mine to see the visa. I couldn't spot it, so I flipped through it slower, and then again. I couldn't believe it wasn't in there. James, meanwhile, had the papers in his hands, and was looking at a letter. Turns out they released a new version of the paperwork just before we posted off our application, and it took them two months to decide that we'd filled in the earlier version and should have filled in the new version. So, despite the fact that the questions haven't really changed (one option was removed, but wasn't one we chose, and they require LESS paperwork to prove identity and living together), we have to fill in this new form and send it all back off. So pray that goes quickly!

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Comment posted by Aurelie at 7:05pm on November 26th 2008

It is so good to hear you guys are doing well! I'm not on facebook, so I don't keep up with the times as much! I'm trying to track down your sister - can you help me? Talk to you soon!

Comment posted by karina at 7:05pm on November 26th 2008

well, i do think your kinda crazy for wanting to fly anywhere for any length of time with a one month old...but if anyone can do it you can :) and at that age they do really do nothing but sleep eat and poop so as longing as the eating and pooping are going well you probably won't have anything to worry about re the sleeping on the plane. are you going to be flying only to pg or are you also planning a wee trip to lovely saskatchewan? :)

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