Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Happy 1st Birthday, Danilka

Danny had a very nice day today. Lara made sure he opened some presents first thing this morning, then he went to nursery as usual. We brought him home a little early so he could have a little party at home with us and Grandma, and with Auntie Catherine, and Cousins Elizabeth and William on skype.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

The Exodus flight is booked!

Last night we booked our one-way flight from Manchester to Calgary - the date will be Wednesday August 7th 2013.

This is earlier than we originally planned. We had the nice idea of cruising over to New York on the QM2 in the spring of 2014, then having a long roadtrip to Calgary from there. This would have meant the dogs didn't have to fly, they could cruise in style with us. But it just proved too expensive, and time consuming. Once we came back from our holiday at New Year, we asked ourselves why were we waiting so long to make the move, and we looked at flying over later this Summer. We asked our bosses if this was possible, they went into Conclave to discuss it (in case anyone's reading this in years to come, the Catholic Cardinals are choosing a new Pope at the moment) and came out with white smoke billowing, saying it was OK.

Of course it's not just as simple as booking a flight. We've had to secure some temporary accommodation for when we arrive (one month rental of a 2-bedroom basement apartment in Cochrane, just outside Calgary. That's Cochrane in the photo, above), find somewhere for the dogs to live during that time, as the owner of the apartment already has 3 dogs (our boys will go into Kennels just outside Cochrane for a month), and arrange to fly them over on the same flight as us (Jackson as excess baggage, Mishka as cargo!).
Once there we need to find a longer-term, dog-friendly rental place, buy a car, get Lara enrolled in school and find a nursery for Danny. It's just as well my Mum will be coming with us for that first month to lend a hand with looking after Lara and Danny while Olga and I sort out the boring stuff.

More good news on the Grandma front - Baba Luda will be back in Bury at the start of April, just in time to help us start packing. We've had quotes from three shipping companies to move our belongings, I've yet to pick one, but the jist is a 40-foot container will be outside our house around the 1st of August and a handful of burly men will pack anything not nailed down.

A Catch up on Danil

I'll get a post in about Danil now, before his big day tomorrow.

He's progressing really well. We weighed him this morning (I made him sit on some very cold bathroom scales), and he's 10.2kg. He just looks in good shape, with chubby cheeks and a fat tum, and strong-looking arms and legs.
He's poorly with a cold at the moment, there's nothing wrong with whatever bit of him that produces snot. He had been having temperature fluctuations recently, and he's been on antibiotics for a week or so now, and they seem to have sorted out what was really bothering him, without touching his cold (we all know, antibiotics WON'T help a cold!!!).
During January and February his sleep patterns went a bit funny. He was consistent in his sleep, he would just insist on waking between 4.30am and 4.45am, day after day. Olga would feed him, he'd be nice and awake, and we would have to take it in turns to take him down to the lounge and look after him there. He would go back to sleep after an hour or so of playing, so Olga and I got into a routine whereby the one of us downstairs with him would have a nap on the sofa under a spare duvet once Danny had fallen back asleep in his pram. This went on for nearly 6 weeks and we just accepted that this was how it was going to be, we had an early-waker. However, in the last 3 or 4 weeks he has been sleeping in later and later, and rather than take him downstairs after his early morning feed, we tried putting him straight back in his cot, and after a few minutes of ssshhing, he would go back to sleep. This seems to have worked, and along with the antibiotics sorting out his body temperature issues, he is sleeping through now to sensible times, in fact it was 7.04am today before he demanded any morning attention at all. Hurrah!

He now has 6 teeth, 2 upper and 2 lower front teeth are well established, and 2 upper incisors are appearing. Those front teeth most likely contributed to his funny sleeping habits earlier in the year, although I'm not sure how they could account for how unerring he was at knowing when it was between 4.30 and 4.45am!

He's superfast at crawling now too. And he loves to pull himself up into a standing position. We think he'll bypass the knee-walking stage that Lara went through for a quite some weeks or months, and soon enough he'll just start walking.

His current favourite (non-milk) food is grapes. He can't get enough, so long as we quarter them first. He also like bananas and brown bread. He eats well at nursery, and from tomorrow he should start cows' milk too.

He certainly seems to be a happy baby, although he can make his displeasure known quite loudly if he has to. All the staff at nursery know him, even the girls who work in other rooms, he's quite the flirt, apparently, always ready with a cheeky smile.