Friday, August 29, 2008

Gay and Away

Hello from San Jose, California! I'm attending the Creative Photograpy Retreat Course. I'll be here until Sunday.

It was hard to drive away from my Kylie. I teared up and choked up and was a blotchy mess. But by the time I got to the airport, I was fine. Fortune smiled on me by giving me an entire row of three seats all to myself on my flight. I played my favorite songs on my ipod (you know, I don't listen to enough music when I'm home. A long stretch of your favorite music is so awesome). My suitcase was first off the line and my shuttle service was prompt and easy. My room is spacious and just lovely.

Carefree is the word that keeps coming to me. I feel carefree.

No diapers, no fussing over Kylie's meals, no planning of toddler activities. No laundry, or dusting or cooking or cleaning. No one to take care of but myself. It's been a long time since I've had this kind of freedom. It's heady.

I miss my family but I'm excited about what I'm going to learn here. Thank you to my sweet wife Karen for encouraging this trip and making it possible.

Please wish me luck!

Oh, I made this page while watching Obama's acceptance speech.


Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, August 25, 2008

Just a few things

We had a great start to our weekend by receiving a surprise package of books from our Reading Angel.

Our Reading Angel has sent Kylie some books before. But we were completely astonished to open a package of TEN (10!!!!!!!) books for Kylie. Amazing! Reading Angel thank you so very much! You are awesome!

You saw some pictures of Kylie playing in the fountain on Saturday. That was such a funny experience. Our little girl got the shakes around the fountain. I don't know if she was cold (she didn't feel cold when I touched her), or if she was excited or if she was a little scared and overwhelmed by all the screaming, running children. But she would just stand there and shake. I really wish we had taken the video camera because all the shaking just cracked us up.

But It also sort of freaked me out so I wrapped her up and sat her down for a bit. This was the face I got. Totally unhappy about being taken away from the fountain.

And then she was squirming away from me and handing Momma Karen her shoes so that she could go back in.

It was such a good time. There are a few more fountain pictures here.

We went to our friend Sophia's third birthday party on Sunday. And then we scurried around getting the house ready for Karen's parent's visit. They are arriving today and staying for a week.

I've been meaning to blog about our recent grass sod adventure and my knitting but I guess that will have to wait.

For now, here are some pages!



Saturday, August 23, 2008

Playing in the fountain

Thursday, August 21, 2008

A few photos

Hey! I've added a new widget thingy on my sidebar. It's Shelfari--a way to share what books I'm reading and have read. Check it out!

Lately, Kylie has started walking around with her hands behind her back. I'm not sure why but it's cute.

A few more pictures.

Coming to get you and your camera Mommy!

I got you! I got you!

I didn't mean to rub the camera lens. Forgive me?

And a couple of scrapbook pages:

Details are here.

You knew this one was coming:

Details are here.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Cat beds

Here is our sweet Phoebe kitty resting peacefully in her cat bed.


Kylie tries to pet the cat. The cat runs away. Kylie grabs the cat bed, sits in it and tries to make meowing noises.

And where one cat bed is good, two are even better. Kylie uproots our other cat Chloe as well.

And the cats huddle near my feet, glaring and planning their revenge. On all of us.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Finger painting

First time finger painting

More pictures

Sunday, August 17, 2008


1. of, like, or pertaining to an empire.
2. a commanding quality, manner.
3. imperious, regal, majestic.

I just cracked up when I saw the above picture. Queen Kylie is looking down on her subjects- the Little People. And I just love her hair in that shot.

Happy 16 month birthday baby girl!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Photo/scrapbook Friday

I don't remember if I shared either one of these pictures with youin May. I put together these two pages yesterday.

Details are here.

Details are here.
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

First Tantrum

We had our first, real, toddler tantrum yesterday.

I didn't even know what was going on until an hour after it was all over.

Here's the story.
I brought Kylie to her highchair for lunch. She started whining a bit as I lowered her. And when her bottom hit the seat, it turned into an all-out scream.

I thought she was in teething pain--after all, she is cutting 2 molars as well as pushing up four lateral incisors. So I'm running around offering teething rings, cold water, popsicles all of which she is refusing. I walk her around the house and sing to her. Then we go outside. Karen takes a turn and another turn. Kylie is still screaming her head off. This lasts around 30 minutes.

Finally, I take her upstairs and get her calmed down. And then it hits me....the highchair.

Kylie has shown signs of wanting out of her highchair. She's been pushing and sliding it away from the dining table. And then pulling out the regular chairs. A very clear signal indeed. I even told Karen a few days ago that we needed to get a booster.

But this tantrum hit me like a ton of bricks. I felt like my head had exploded. I thought her tantrum might look like her kicking her feet or acting mad. Nope, my girl just screams, cries, clings to me and is the most pitiful, needy thing.

Now I know what to look for. And I brushed up on what to do when she has one.

But we also ran out and bought her the booster. (And a table pad and some toddler plates and such).

And, if you want to look on the bright side, I said a WHOLE lot of prayers yesterday. God is probably smirking.

Here is our little munchkin, happily eating in her booster.

PS- I had a venti iced mocha yesterday. Sometimes you've just got to have that extra kick of sugar and caffeine...particularly when your kid has been kickin' your butt and makin' your head explode.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Toddler Karate

In toddler Karate, you must first prepare yourself and find your center.

Then stand and extend your awareness.

Practice your push-hand katas...

and your standing crane position.

This is the essence of ultimate toddler karate--the drunken toddler position.

Would you like to see it better? Here's a closer look.

All beware of toddlers practicing karate.

Monday, August 11, 2008

New Words and more

Kylie has made a big leap on her words this month.

Here's a quick review:
6 months: Momma
11 months: baby, hey, up, yea & bye
12 months: kitty (sounds like key)
14 months: banana
15 months: no, hi, belly button (beh-buh)

And this month, she's added: shoe, spoon (sounds like poo), ball, truck, dot, water (wa-wa), Bo (for her Gymbo doll) and "hoo-hoo" when she sees an owl.

It's just amazing!

And she might be trying to say "bling" which is kind of embarrassing. And of course, there is a story behind this. Kylie likes to play with children's headbands. I got her these back in the Spring and she just loves them. She's stretched them out tremendously but that just makes them more fun.
She puts them on her neck like a necklace:

And walks around with them. (don't worry; she always supervised with them).

And does other odd, assorted things with them.

Anyway, Karen and I somehow got started calling them "bling". I guess because she's so enamored of wearing them like necklaces or bracelets. So just the other day, she picked one up and clearly said "bing". Heaven help me! That's going to be fun to explain. I can hear it now, "Yes, one of Kylie's first 20 words was bling".

In other news, she's finally getting over the summer cold she had last week. She got soooo sick of us wiping her nose. In order to make it more fun, I started handing her a tissue and saying, "Can you wipe Mommy's nose?" And she would grab the tissue and rub it on my face. Then would say, "Can I wipe Kylie's nose?" and she would let me without too much of a struggle. And she'll grab the tissue and wipe her own nose. Plus, she's learning to blow when we ask her.

I also use the above technique in brushing Kylie's teeth. Kylie used to brush pretty well but lately she's just been sucking on the toothbrush and not really brushing anymore. So, I have an extra adult toothbrush that I hand to Kylie when she's in the bath. I'll ask her to brush my teeth. Then I'll present her toddler toothbrush and ask if I can brush her teeth. And we go back and forth. Then I hand her back her own toothbrush and ask her to finish brushing her own teeth. It's working pretty well.

Another change we've seen this month is that she really wants to help with her bathtime routine. When her bath is over, she wants to hand me the bath toys for me to put away. She wants to help dry her body and her hair with a towel. She grabs either her comb or brush to help brush her hair. And she wants a dot of lotion on her hands to rub into her legs. She's such a sweetie.

Here's a few more photos from the other day. Karen is distracting Kylie while I prepare the baby's dinner.

And when the fussy baby wants her dinner now, you've got to get creative.

Lastly, here are two scrapbook pages I completed over the weekend:

Details are here.

Details are here.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Walkin' Back and Forth

These pictures are so filled with love that they just slay me.

Several times a day, Kylie likes to play the "walk back and forth between mommies" game. Here's the pictorial story.


Walking towards Mommy (still holding her arms up like she's holding onto our fingers as she walks)

Walking fast and getting TOO CLOSE.

Hugs and kisses from Mommy and then it is back to Momma.

Kylie flies in for a hug.

And a tender kiss.

And then a pose for the camera-crazy Mommy.

And then we do it again.
About 30 times.
And we all love every second of it.