Friday, August 26, 2011

Outings, accessories, unrequited love

Dear Maya, 

It's been a wonderful week with you. Although we still have a lot of unpacking and organizing to do, the pace has slowed a little and you and mommy have spent several long, cuddly mornings in bed. And in the afternoons, we have gone on a few quick outings so we can start to get the feel of our new neighborhood.  

On Tuesday we took advantage of the lovely weather and went to the park that is just a stone's throw from our front door. It has this beautiful creek that reflected the mountains and the gorgeous sky, complete with chairs set up to sit and enjoy the view. And facing the opposite direction from this camera angle is our house!

On Wednesday we went to the library that is just a tiny bit further down the road and on the other side from the park. Although it was just built recently and is still in the process of filling shelves, there are plenty of books and a wide open floor with toys near the children's book area. It's perfect for you to explore.

Mommy has taken these outings as opportunities to get you accustomed to wearing shoes. Now that you stand almost as much as you sit or crawl, it's probably better to protect your feet from rocks or other sharp things. You keep trying to put your shoes in your mouth but otherwise don't seem to hate them too much.

Unfortunately, we have not been so lucky with this hat. Your Great-Grandpa has been talking about getting you a baseball cap for months now, and last weekend your Great Aunt Sue finally found one your size. As soon as you figured out how to pull it off, though, mommy couldn't keep it on you. We'll have to keep trying...

We have been joking about all the unrequited love in our new house. Uncle Matt and Aunt Rhi have a boy cat named Lightning who really seems interested in our girl Clio, but she hisses and runs away from him every time. However, she is getting friendlier with you and has even curled up next to you when mommy nurses you on the bed. As soon as you stop nursing and start moving, though, she's usually ready to hit the road. Hey, at least she gave you a fighting chance in the following succession of photos. You must be growing on her.

The other unrequited love we joke about around here is your newfound affection for Kermit the Frog. Uncle Matt has this puppet and can do a spot-on voice and movement impersonation of the real thing. You are hooked. When asked, "Where's Rhi?" or "Where's the kitty?" you always look in the right direction, but usually it takes time for you to become familiar with a new name. You have remembered "Kermit" in record time, though, and love to give him kisses and play with his hands and mouth. We won't tell Miss Piggy...

Well, mommy has to go charge some batteries and organize the candles. We're getting the house ready for the effects of Hurricane Irene this weekend and plan on moving your bed into our room for the duration. Not that we're worried about you sleeping, as you recently slept through fireworks that were basically over our house.

Love you!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Long time no post

Dear Maya,

I can't believe it's been three weeks since the last post! Moving has kept us so busy and any time that mommy's hands were free were dedicated to holding and playing with you to make up for the times when they were full of boxes and cleaning supplies. Not that you were especially needy or anything--you took this move in stride like the wonderful baby you are. Even for the 10 days you and mommy were in the new house but daddy hadn't joined us yet as he finished caretaking at our old house--you were so good. Thank you for that.

The only crankiness you've really shown lately was the beginning of last week. I think you got used to being held by Uncle Matt and Auntie Rhi as well as mommy and daddy during the weekend, so when it was time for everybody to go to work and it was just you and mommy again, you weren't too pleased that you couldn't be held all day long. Perhaps it is all the extra playtime you're getting in with your auntie and uncle, though, that has led to one blissful change--you've been sleeping 30 minutes later in the morning. Hallelujah!

You are so active as always. Three weeks ago you could stand on your own for about 5 seconds after letting go of something when in a standing position, but now you can rise to a standing position without pulling up on anything and can stand for 20 or 30 seconds at a time. These last couple of days you've even been standing on some very uneven and soft surfaces, namely mommy and daddy's bed which has a 2-inch memory foam cushion and a very cushy comforter. You have an amazing sense of balance and always fall gently.

You like to gnaw on the rubber handle of your hairbrush--it squeaks against your gums
One funny quirk is that you seem to be more comfortable standing when holding something in your hands. I'm not sure if you're counterbalancing a low center of gravity or simply using the item to focus on, but it seems to work. Most of the time whatever you are holding is also partly in your mouth. As babies do, you put everything in your mouth lately, but every time we checked to see if we could feel any teeth coming in we couldn't. Today when mommy looked into your mouth instead, I saw a tooth starting to come in. Finally!

You look like you're either singing karaoke or doing the Obon dance--how apropos!
This past Monday was a very important holiday in Japan--Obon. It is when the Japanese honor their departed ancestors. Mommy wishes she could have done more to help you and daddy celebrate, but at least she was able to make some sushi for everyone and to dress you up in the traditional outfit your grandparents sent over for you. It's still quite big, so maybe you'll be able to fit into it next summer as well. Uncle Matt lifted you up to our new pass-through window in these photos, making you look like the chef at a sushi bar. :)

Well, we have another busy weekend planned so mommy needs to get to bed now. Love you!

'Reconstructing' a paper crane we made on Obon
P.S. Since the last post you have added the following foods to your diet: peaches, pears, pumpkin, zucchini, green grapes and green peas.  You've also had the following spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, onion powder and curry powder.

Helping mommy do the laundry...