Monday, February 27, 2012

Comical, musical, magical Maya

Dear Maya,
It's been a bit of a challenging week for mommy and daddy. The two of us have been taking turns feeling under-the-weather, leaving it harder to manage you and your growing independence. It didn't help that you were probably fighting a bit of a cold, too, but the only sign you showed of it was a very crusty nose...

You were moody at times this week and yet you had your hysterical moments, too. You dispelled the cabin fever we were all feeling by finding silly things to do with everyday objects. The laundry basket continued to be an object of play, as well as clothes hangers, plastic lids and your new favorite accessory, daddy's belt.

photo by Auntie Rhi
funny levitating bow-legged baby photo
taken during 'gymnastics time' on our floor mat
We had another cultural Saturday come together thanks to Uncle Matt pulling out several musical instruments for you to hear and try. On top of the oh-so-common bass guitar, there were the finger cymbals, the snake-charming flute, the mini okarina, the maracas, the "Indian banjo" and the thunder tube shown here.

We're all so proud of your musical inclinations. It's been hard to catch on video so mommy hasn't blogged much about it, but you've started picking up tunes pretty well. Sometime in January you began mimicking and/or filling in the repetitive parts of the song "Funiculi, funicula" when we would sing it. Then a couple weeks ago you started singing what we thought were made-up (but believable) songs, only to realize you were singing songs you hear every day such as "Twinkle, twinkle." The proof was when mommy noticed the other night that you were singing the bedtime song I made up for you when we were getting you ready for bed!

But perhaps the most amazing feat is that you sing scales! We don't remember how it started, but you often copy us when we sing five ascending or descending notes, and your sense of pitch is pretty darned good. In fact, in this video it seems like you keep restarting at the beginning when you catch yourself going flat. Wow!

(Sorry the volume is so low and the beginning looks uninteresting. Someone likes to stop what she's doing and ham it up when she sees the camera, so mommy had to keep hidden part of the time.)

The other day, mommy and daddy celebrated the 10th anniversary of the day they became a couple. Sunday Uncle Matt and Aunt Rhi babysat you for the afternoon so we could go on our first date in ages. It was very nice to spend time on our own, but wouldn't you know it--mommy ended up stopping at a thrift store buying tons of stuff for you! Daddy humored me as I had a blast choosing cute outfits and, the pièce de résistance, tap shoes! They won't fit for a little while, but I'm sure you'll love making noise with them when they do!

Using a fork for the first time to eat some cantaloupe
Your new foods this week were the black olives added to your usual Monday night homemade spinach pizza (thanks, daddy!) and the flounder in the prepared baby food pouch with rice and veggies that your grandparents sent over from Japan (thanks, obaachan and ojiichan!) Oh, and the Japanese snack, Pocky!

Love you!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Child of the world

Dear Maya,

This week we got to see a bit more of the outside world than has been usual lately. Partly, this was due to Mommy's work schedule opening up. Partly, it was because we've had some sunny weather. But mostly it is thanks to you, little one. Since you slept past your normal ungodly waking hour several times this week, Mommy and Daddy had more energy to do fun things with you. Granted, this morning was not one of those mornings so now Daddy is snoring away next to me, but we have hope that we can make this new habit stick.

We saw the actual outside world, i.e. the park. You played with leaves, rocks and dirt. You watched with interest as bigger kids ran around. You rode on the swings with Mommy (you hated it), the teeter totter with both of us (you weren't really interested), and then the best ride of all--Daddy's shoulders!

We also saw some of the inside outside world, i.e. stores. Mommy finally got to check out a local consignment store that sells gently used children's clothes, toys and books where I bought you a few items. We also had fun playing in the toy aisles of a department store without actually buying anything.

Finally, we virtually saw the outside world via our "Asia Day" Saturday. You wore the Chinese outfit and played with the lion puppet from Mommy's old boss. You watched our new Japanese language DVD and had sushi for dinner. You listened to various music including Mongolian throat singing by Uncle Matt. :)

Well, cutie pie, mommy's going to get some sleep now. Love you!

P.S. Your new foods this week were cauliflower, cheddar cheese, pancakes, shrimp crackers and Japanese fish cake.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sugar, spice, crazy, nice

Dear Maya,

We've had such an active week around here that it's felt like more than seven days since my last update. We enjoyed our time with Grandma and Papa Stan last week and you were so well-behaved and sweet. I'm sure it was sad to see them leave on Wednesday morning, but little did you know who else was leaving that day...

Mommy! Yup, it was my first night ever away from you. Aunt Bobbie was in an opera at college so I drove a couple hours to see it, then spent the night at a hotel with her, Grandma, and Papa Stan as it was too late to drive home. I came in the next morning after less than a day away from you and your first reaction was...

Non-existent! You've become such an independent little thing lately. When you want to be held or nursed or fed you certainly let us know, but you're just as happy running around the house, making messes and generally exploring. Why just tonight when mommy got home from work you came to the door with two handfuls of...

Chocolate! We have lots of Valentines sweets around here and you managed to tip over a bowl we didn't think you could reach (ha ha!) and get a good mouthful or so of these chocolates mommy made before anyone knew it. We'll be keeping the red velvet cupcakes away from you but I guess you can have some of...

Auntie Rhi's heart cookies! Why not? You also had your first taste of fortune cookies the other day. We may have introduced more new foods to you this week than any other so far: you've had tortillas, eggs and Papa Stan's grilled salmon, too. Maybe all these new forms of protein can help explain the reason you've been so...

Hyper! Every night after dinner you've been so crazy and funny. You run around doing silly things with your toys or putting towels or scarves on your head, completely cracking us all up with your antics. Sometimes you even get a kick out of yourself, too, throwing your head back with laughter or shouting what sounds like...

"Oh my god!" And that's what mommy and daddy thought when they first looked at the clock this morning. After months of averaging a 4:30 start (ranging from 3:15 to 5:45), we're getting close to a more normal waking hour. Although you fussed a couple times around midnight and 4:30, this morning you got up at 6:30.

Well, mommy's getting tired. Sleep well, little one. Love you!!!

Monday, February 6, 2012

A quick Maya update

Dear Maya,

Just a brief post tonight as mommy wants to spend some quality time with Grandma and Poppa Stan. They came up from North Carolina this afternoon to visit us for a couple of days. You got a two-hour head start hanging out with them while mommy was at work, and you already learned how to push around the safari jeep toy they gave you. After having daddy's homemade pizza for dinner (you had your own smaller version with spinach and peppers), Grandma helped mommy give you a bath and put you to bed.

Who needs mascara when a bath gives you lashes like this?
New things you do:
"Wash" your chest and belly yourself in the bath.
Go to the bookcase and reach up when we say "Do you want to read a book?"
"Read" your book yourself, making garbledy talking noises while turning the pages of your books.

Looking strangely surprised by your most-read (and chewed!) book

New things you've experienced this week:
Getting a bottle of milk from daddy first thing in the morning instead of nursing (yeah!)
Playing a special game of chase with us using ogre masks to celebrate Setsubun
(For more info on this Japanese festival, click on this link to last year's post)

Wearing your ogre headband agreeably

New things you've eaten:
Cottage cheese
Daddy's homemade bagels

Closing your eyes while playing Supergirl with Uncle Matt
Well, that's all for this week. Love you!

Reading Mommy's favorite book before bed