Let’s go back to a simpler time. Before coronavirus became a household name. When you didn’t have to wear a mask into the grocery store. When you didn’t have to second-guess a decision to attend a family gathering because of fears of contracting (or unknowingly spreading) a disease.
Let’s go back to 2019.
A first birthday
We celebrated Daniel’s first birthday in January 2019. It also marked the end of Mallory’s maternity leave and the beginning of Daniel’s time in daycare. This also coincided with a period of nearly two months of various colds, fevers, rashes, and other illnesses. Coincidence? I think not.
Another baby on the way
But enough with this talk of viruses and sicknesses. The biggest news of 2019 was that we were expecting our second child, another little boy! Mallory was an absolute trooper throughout the pregnancy: working, taking care of Daniel and I, and growing another little human.
A big move & career change
With a one year old and another child on the way, Mallory and I asked ourselves: “What could we do to make this year even more interesting?”
The answer: pack up and move the family from Vancouver back to Winnipeg.
Vancouver had been my home for nearly 10 years and we had started our family there but it became clear to us that the best place for our boys was to be close to family. That’s it! Back to Winnipeg!
With that decision made, the next hurdle was to figure out what we were going to do about jobs. I was fortunate to arrange a remote contract with a client which I started while still in Vancouver. It was really tough to say goodbye to my old coworkers – it had been a great 5+ years there. Mallory arranged to do her current job remotely, and we were all set!
To move our stuff, we rented a giant steel shipping container. They dropped it off outside our house and we loaded it up with the help of friends and relatives. It was a bit of challenge to strap everything down so that it wouldn’t slide around during transportation, but if I may say so myself, we did a pretty darn good job.
We were planning on moving in with relatives in Winnipeg and starting our search for a more permanent home once we were there. It was a strange feeling packing up all this stuff and not knowing exactly when we’d be unpacking it again.
Mallory & Daniel flew to Winnipeg while my Dad and I drove the car back. We stayed in Revelstoke for one of our stops and we happened to see a band called The Carbons play at a street festival. They were really good live and I’ve really enjoyed listening to them since.
On Sept 19, in the middle of a family dinner at the Keg on Portage Ave, Mallory started feeling contractions. We had already had a few false alarms over the previous couple of weeks so Mallory wasn’t completely sure if this was the real deal or not. (Spoiler alert: it was.)
We hurried back to Headingley to drop off Daniel at home and by that point it was clear that a baby was on the way. We returned to the city and headed to St. Boniface Hospital.
We arrived, checked-in, and Mallory’s labour steadily progressed while we in the triage station. Unfortunately there were no delivery rooms available so ended up being moved to an operating room when Mallory got further along. Shortly after, we got to meet the newest member of our family, Henry Norman MacEachern.
Henry is a sweet-hearted, happy little boy. Daniel absolutely adores him, and so do we.
A new house
We had been looking for a home since we arrived in Winnipeg and had finally found one that was perfect for us. We had come to an informal agreement and all that was left to do was sign on the dotted line to make the official offer. We had an appointment arranged and were ready to wrap things up.
There was just one problem: the appointment was scheduled during the time Mallory was giving birth to Henry!
“Is this a sign we shouldn’t buy?” we wondered. “Is Henry trying to stop us from making a giant mistake?”
In the end, we chalked it up to a funny coincidence. We rescheduled the appointment (and brought Henry along with us) and got the deal done.
It was September but we wouldn’t get possession until April 30, 2020. The waiting really was the hardest part.
2019 had a little bit of everything for us. It wasn’t easy packing up and moving halfway across the country with a 1 year old and another on the way but we made it work and had a lot of fun along the way.