October 2008

Monthly Archive


Posted by lynn on 12 Oct 2008 | Tagged as: family, kai, melina

Pumpkin Kids

Pumpkin Wagon

Yesterday we ventured over to Ray’s Pumpkin Patch for some photo opps and over-priced pumpkins. We’ve gone to Ray’s (which is a tot-sized lot on Solano Ave) every year since Kai was two – and every year I think, “This just isn’t as exciting as last year’s photos made it look. Next year let’s go to a real patch where the pumpkins are still attached to the vines, the kids can climb a haystack, and we can all go on a wagon ride.” We’ll see if I manage remember this next year.

Cookie Production

Candy Corns

We picked up another family tradition when Kai was two: Every October since I can remember my mom has baked and decorated pumpkin-shaped sugar cookies. Now, she brings the naked cookies along with frosting, food coloring, candy corn, and raisins to Berkeley so that Kai, and now Meli, can frost and decorate their very own. Kai has gotten much more artful recently, and yesterday even added a green stem to each pumpkin. Meli’s cookies, on the other hand, look like Kai’s a few years ago: a mountain of candy corns!

cereal pyramids

Posted by lynn on 08 Oct 2008 | Tagged as: kai

Couch Cuddle

Kai had a really funny way of describing his cereal-eating habits yesterday:

“I eat my cereal like a pyramid. I start with three kinds, then for the next bowl have two, then just one. If I’m really hungry I start with four, so it’s a bigger pyramid.”

Morning Hugs

This struck me as not only funny but a brilliant little bit of metaphorical thinking for a 5-year-old. Of course, he is my step-kid. Kai based his comment on our house guideline of no more than three cereals at once (otherwise it really does get out of control), and his voracious morning appetite.

16 month rituals + routines

Posted by lynn on 01 Oct 2008 | Tagged as: friends, melina

More than huge leaps in physical development, Melina’s 16th month has been all about developing – and learning – her own little routines.

Special Delivery @ Fenestra Winery, Livermore

Slide Steps @ Golden Gate Park

Toddler commute. Meli loves to bring everyone their shoes when she knows we’re about to leave the house, and she mostly manages to get the right shoes to the right people. On days we take Kai to school first, she knows we usually stick around and read with him and his classmates. One day we said good-bye to Kai at the classroom door and Meli was not pleased. On the other end of the day, I sometimes take her to toddler swim at BHS, which is on the way to Kai’s school. Now whenever we drive by the BHS parking lot between her school and Kai’s, she points towards the gym and speaks in expressive babble. Can a one-year-old have a sense of direction? Regardless of time of day, Meli enjoys “dancing” to certain songs from her car seat. Her latest favorite is a tune from The New Pornographers. (Kai, on the other hand, is really into the Foo Fighters. Haha.)

Pretty Girl, Fenestra Winery

AB&J (almond butter & jelly)

Mealtime. Our girl refuses to eat snacks when she knows meal time is soon. She also gets mad if we try to placate her hunger with leftovers while waiting for something to finish cooking or cool. She always seems to know the real deal is near. She uses a spoon pretty well with yogurt and oatmeal, and holds out her bowl or plate – along with her utensil – when she wants more food. When she dumps it upside-down or throws it on the floor, obviously she’s done. Big news: Our little girl finally found a non-pureed veggie she likes – spinach!

Hugs w/ Suli

Suli + Meli @ UCB Campus

Bath time. Meli loves “bath bath” and has a whole set of rituals around it. She helps bathe her brother (but not yet herself) and likes to fill squishy spike ball with water. When she’s ready to come out she likes to play with the drain plug and eventually lets the tub fully drain. Sometimes she’ll stack all the toys in the bath basket, and she usually gets mad when we actually pull her out of the tub. She likes to mimic us putting on her lotion: She dabs the bottle top on her hand then rubs her palm all over her belly. She asks for her toothbrush (by pointing) then sits on Kai’s stool to gnaw on the brush for a while. Sometimes she’ll actually vibrate her whole head (instead of the brush) to really clean her teeth – or so we hope.

Yerba Buena Gardens, SF

Play Group (remember all those babes in a circle a year ago?)

Bedtime. “Hop Hop” (Hop on Pop) is still a favorite, along with The Very Busy Spider and a set of big, bright Babies First Words books. Melina still has a hard time sitting through a full story without pulling out the next – or flipping through one book as we read from a different one. Sometime in the month since I fully weaned her, we developed a new bedtime routine: We go around the house and say “good night” to the rooms, the toys, the books, and the furniture. By the time we get to her crib she’s usually ready to grab her two blankies and Chop Eater, roll over, and stick her butt in the air for a super slumber.

And just plain play. She runs all over the place, most often when chasing her brother or playing peek-a-boo with a friend. She can stack several blocks and put stack rings on a stick, and likes to toss a ball back and forth, especially in a swimming pool. She gets a kick out of walking backwards – most often to seat herself on a stool or a curb, but sometimes just because it’s kinda fun. She loves to climb, and thinks standing on top of something like a chair or box is much more interesting than standing on the ground. And she gets mad when she can’t keep up with her brother on the big kid monkey bars at the playground or his school.

Oh – and take a look at Melina’s play group a year ago. Part of the group is in the shot above, all grown up and toddler-like.