August 2008

Monthly Archive

kai’s first day: the big K

Posted by lynn on 27 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: kai

First Day in Class

Ready for School!

This morning Kai took his first step into the next stage of childhood: Kindergarten! Any nerves hid behind sheer enthusiasm and silliness. He’d spent the entire previous day shouting “It’s my last day of preschool!!!” to anyone within earshot (he did honor his preschool teachers with some beautiful Kai drawings, pictured below), and all morning bouncing from one room to the next.

Proud Kai Shows Off His Lunch

Pre-school Teacher Thank-you's

I think a new favorite ritual will be packing his own lunch each school night. He’s using a lunch box Grandma and Grandpa Weiss got a while back, something he’s filled with play food for years. And now, wow. He gets to put real food inside! Once a week he’ll also partake in the school lunch program, which offers cheap organic (yes, organic! it’s Berkeley) meals, partially funded by the Alice Waters foundation.

His whole family entourage (Joey, me, and Meli plus his mom) hung out with him for the first morning sendoff on the playground then his new classroom. I’m sure before we know it we’ll be back for Melina’s first day. Yikes. In the meantime, Kai has been asking if he can stay at his new school “forever.” A good, good sign.

aqua babe *video*

Posted by lynn on 26 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: melina

Floaties

When You're Up You're Up...

Last Friday Meli enjoyed another dip in the BHS warm pool with friends Melia and Lily. She was absolutely giddy the whole time, and along with her one-year-old buddies was as interested in hanging onto the deep-end pool floaties and climbing out/jumping back into the pool as she was in the songs and directed movement.

Swimming With Dada

Pool Party

Daddy came along to snap pictures and take video, including one of Melina taking a hand-held standing jump into the pool, and another of her bouncing to “The Grand Old Duke of York” – complete with a bonus screech that translates to “I want to grab that pool floaty NOW!”

The next day we went to a pool party for friend Daren’s birthday. Meli got to experience a non-warm pool, and Kai got to practice his swim skills just after the end of his first round of lessons.

happy 70th, dad!

Posted by lynn on 21 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: family, melina

Our Little Family Table @ Grandpa's 70th

All Dressed Up for Grandpa's Party

Last weekend we celebrated my dad’s 70th birthday with a big bash at my parents’ San Jose home. The four cousins got a chance to reunite after our Capitola trip, and my folks got a chance to show off their grandkids to their blooming group of friends. (Yes, retirement has them not only traveling but socializing more than ever!)

German & the Twins

Zelda, Glenn, Merle

Melina had fun showing Grandma and Grandpa the holes in their babyproofing. She found nooks and crannies even the twins haven’t uncovered in their full year of toddlerhood thus far. Right away she noticed a floor-level, glass door in a forgotten corner. Inside my mom keeps her collection of small ceramic and glass pitchers – so colorful and tempting I’m suprised none of the other kids found them earlier.

The Hindmarshes (or, as Kai says, 'The Marshes'

Birthday Eve Pie

We didn’t get a chance to clear the cabinet just then, so tried to distract her instead. Then as Kai and I lit the candles on my dad’s birthday-eve pie, I saw Meli walking towards me, carrying a beautiful green pitcher that she wanted to hand to me and wearing an enourmously proud smile. Who says boys are more mischievous than girls? Though I suppose “super curious explorer” is a the true way to describe our little girl!

re-focus, re-engage, and alas, reflect

Posted by lynn on 13 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: family, melina, pregnancy, work

It took me less than one month to come to terms with the fact that two part-time jobs, two kids, my own writing, and everything else we have going on is just too much to handle at once. I gave notice to WaMu on Monday, and feel good about restoring a tiny bit of sanity to my life by the end of the month. I’ll be able to devote more energy to Big Tent, will still have play time with Jelly Bean every Monday afternoon, and will even re-gain my writing day. Needless to say, I’ll also be able to spend more quality time with my family as a whole.

Now I have the task of cleaning out my cube and files at the job I held for my entire pregnancy, and the place I returned to work part-time when my daughter was just six months old. It feels hard, and I’m realizing that it has nothing to do with how much I enjoyed this job. (It was a fine job, but nothing special.) It has everything to do with all the associations this place holds for me, all the happy memories of a time in my life I hold incredibly dear: Walks around the block with my bulging belly; walks to visit Joey in the office with our little newborn in tow; papering my cube walls with pictures of my six-month-old because I missed her so terribly when I first returned to work; dutifully pumping in the converted shower room; doing the morning commute rounds with Joey: drop off Kai, drop off Meli, drive ourselves to our shared workplace.

But now Melina is practically running, Kai is starting kindergarten, and I have a chance to flex my brain’s strategy muscles once again. In a sense, career-wise I’ve spent the last two years recharging. Now it’s time to re-engage!

second annual capitola trip *photos*

Posted by lynn on 08 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: family, kai, melina, travel

HandsLast week we took off for a long weekend in Capitola with the Weiss clan, meaning our family, my folks, and my sister and family. It looks like we have an annual tradition in the making, and already Kai has his favorite things he looks forward to. Number one on his list? “The little cereal boxes that Grandma Nancy brings.”

Of course we took tons of fun photos all weekend long – so enjoy!

Little Grandpa & Big GrandpaHighlights included a wonderfully sunny day on the beach, an afternoon trip to the boardwalk, and Melina’s first ice cream cone. Joey and I got to sneak out with Stacie and German a few nights for a glass of wine across the street – also a great treat! We had to leave mid-week to return to work, but the Hams and my parents are still enjoying the sand and surf. My mom called today and mentioned that Lucas and Noah keep asking for Melina and Kai. Don’t worry, guys, we’ll see you again soon!

14 months and busy, busy, busy

Posted by lynn on 01 Aug 2008 | Tagged as: melina

All Smiles

Life is certainly busy these days, for us working adults but also for our burgeoning toddler. Melina constantly finds things to try out and places to explore. She can’t even get through one story book without heading to the shelf to pick out another. In little snippets, here’s what she’s up to. Happy 14 months, Jelly Bean!

Walking @ Lanesplitters, Dada's 40th Bday Surprise Party

Explore: Meli’s favorite activity is to destroy our house. She’s pretty good about sticking to the “in-bounds” areas (drawers, baskets, and bookshelves that are safe for her… granted this is most our house). But she’ll pull these areas apart within five minutes of entering a room.

She’s super curious about how things work, and very interested in putting things back together: Mama's PurseThe lid on her sippy cup, her sippy cup back on the coaster, her shoes on her feet, her hair clip that she pulled off back on her head… you get the picture. She has varying degrees of success depending on the task. Amazingly, she’s pretty persistent and doesn’t seem to get frustrated too easily unless she’s tired.

She’s walking very quickly now. Last week at the park she nearly broke into a run to chase after some dogs. Since she hasn’t yet figured out the running thing it was just a very quick waddle, and (at least to her mama) adorable.

Little House

“Talk”: She’s talking up a storm and trying to refine her babble. Banana – her new favorite food – is now either “abana” or just “b” The dog doesn’t say “woof,” he says “f,” and the cow says “mmmm.” She shakes her head “no” quite frequently, sometimes when she means yes. The real “no” is obvious, though. It includes a hand gesture brushing the air (or object) away.

Meli in Rice Pot

Eat/Drink: Our “good eater” still hates milk with a passion. It’s the one thing she never fails to push away firmly. And by milk I mean all kinds but mama’s: cow, soy, rice, even chocolate. For some reason she does tolerate it in cereal, so I’m hopeful she’ll come around to drinking it one day. She’s not a huge fan of chocolate, period. Hmmm. Is she really our child?

Brother's Glasses + Four Teeth!

Sleep: Unlike her half-brother, Melina is not a morning person. She usually wakes up cranky around 6am, and either fusses back to sleep or I nurse her and she goes back down without a fuss. Then she’ll often sleep til 9 or even 10 – if we let her- and this time wakes up happy but a little groggy. Guess she’s our kid after all!

Hanging by Fountain @ Daycare

Play: Meli loves water and was really bummed when she couldn’t get into the pool with Kai at a recent swim lesson. She also loves balls and her blankie and likes to play with crayons and paper. Sometimes she draws a real line or two. I bought her some big-grip toddler markers (albeit for 18+ months) at Target last week. I was super excited and she seemed so too, but didn’t quite understand they had to be facing a certain way for the ink to touch the paper. All three markers landed on the floor within five minutes.

In final 14-month news, we just found out Melina is graduating to the Toddler table at daycare. (Same room, but more activities like walks in the courtyard.) Her tenure with the Waddlers passed so quickly, but apparently she’s walking and self-feeding well enough to move on over – and according to her favorite teacher, a bit earlier than normal. Yay, Jelly Bean!