Warning: Picture overload!!
Thanksgiving was wonderful. It was spent with Mitch's family in Gillette, Wyoming, where we lived the first semester we were married. My family was supposed to drive the 12 hours there and join us so we could bless Nathan, but it couldn't happen because of the weather on their end. Actually, we weren't exactly sure WE would make it, either! In hindsight, we had to cut the trip short and leave before we would've blessed him, so it would've been hard to work out anyway!
My family felt awful that they couldn't be there with us, and it was sad not having them there. We all made the best of the situation and had a great time wherever we were. Camille has been studying at BYU in Provo and was able to take a shuttle from Provo to Rexburg, then drive with us to Gillette. She got to meet Nathan and was a HUGE help with him, especially in the car. Every few hours I pumped a meal for him, and she fed him. This made our stops only ten minutes long every few hours, to burp and change him, as opposed to 45 minutes every few hours to feed, burp, and change him. What a difference it made! (Wish she wasn't too stubborn for pictures or I'd have a great picture of her and Nathan to put up here!)
We're so glad she could come and we loved seeing how much fun she had with Mitch's family. We even taught her Progressive Rummy, the Dooleys' favorite card game (it's very complicated and takes hours to play). She, of course, ended up BEATING us all, only after picking up the game super fast! She IS the smart one; i'll never doubt it!
It was the best experience to watch Mitch's parents meet their first grandbaby. They both fell in love and we loved watching them with Nathan. They've picked out their "grandparent" names, GG and Papa. We have been told that "GG" stands for "Grand Goddess," because, "I am waaay too young to be Grandma Dooley." She's also working on her Graduate Gemologist degree, so the acronym fits!
It helped that our little N man "discovered people" while we were there and stared at everyone, making eye contact for a very long time. I was very impressed and proud of my little guy! You could tell he was just focusing and studying out the detail in people's faces. We just had so much fun with everyone! It's hard to recall details because so much went on, but it was relaxing at the same time. Mitch's grandparents were there, so they got to meet their great grandson. We were incredibly pleased to be able to show off our tiny new addition to the family. He brought them (almost) as much joy as he brings us every day!
This is one of my favorite pictures from the week, of Nathan with his Uncle Danny. Danny really likes holding sleeping babies. (Who wouldn't!?) He got to change his first diaper ever while we were there. Nathan was even nice and refrained from peeing on him! I love this picture of them all cozied up. This is one of my favorite parts of the day, and I can see why Danny liked it!
Another memorable part of the week was visiting my dad's mom, my Grandma Salveson, on the way home. She absolutely loves babies, and is an expert after having eleven children of her own. She's had a few strokes and has trouble communicating and coming up with the words she wants, but mentally she's very sharp and knows exactly what she wants to say. This can be frustrating for her, but we knew she'd enjoy Nathan so much, and that there wouldn't be a ton of need for detailed conversation. I am so glad we stopped! We were trying to beat a storm but took a chance on sparing about an hour for her to visit with him. It was seriously the cutest thing ever! We couldn't get her to look at the camera for any pictures; she wouldn't take her eyes off him!
"He knows Grandma. Grandma loves you! Oh, he already knows it!"
"I've never seen anything like this in my life!"
(We kept thinking, "Really!? You had so many kids! And they've all had kids! You've seen a ton of babies!" She was soooo sweet!)
PS--my hair really isn't that short; I don't look like a man every day. It was just tucked behind my ear! Sorry to be vain; I couldn't help but notice it!)
"He's so big! It's like he was born a toddler!"
(We finally decided she meant that he was really aware; he happened to be wide awake when we stopped by. He's only in the 20th percentile for height and weight!)
We also finally got a Nathan smile on camera. They're so sporadic and pretty accidental right now, but it's happening on a regular basis. It was fitting that the first smile caught in a picture was for his dad :o)
I also discovered why parents love to gush over their children so much...can you tell!?