Thursday, October 30, 2014

Random thoughts Thursday

A few random pictures from this week.. I find it mildly amusing that with child #1 I had the super nice big camera with me everywhere I went and took high quality photos...
Now with child #2 I'm lucky if my iPhone has enough battery left to take a quick shot and half the time the photo is dark, blurry, or the babies eyes are closed from the flash... But thus it is.
Above is a picture of holly with all her hair brushed out, there is so much and it's do long, but alas it's hot and she gets sweaty and uncomfortable so this week we did fancy braids, there are 4.
It's Halloween week and I have been bribing Holly to wear the Halloween shirts I bought two years ago on sale before she outgrows them.  They are not dresses and they are long sleeves... So it has been a challenge.. And Go figure it's the end of October and still in the 70's but she has complied.
Here is Lyra with Moe, she is not a fan yet.  But he is kind of unpredictable and the fact the I wouldn't touch him didn't help.... When you get home Tanta you can work on this.
Lyra 'helping' sissy with her reading homework.
A rare moment when Lyra is asleep.  I've started tracking sleep and food again so far over the last 4 days she slept 9h, 12h, 9.5h, 9h... Not a lot...
Lyra wants to be crawling around exploring everywhere now.  Here we are after swimming
And the girls played together at child watch, Lyra was super excited to throw the ball at sissy and didn't want to leave 
I convinced Holly to go to Kindergym so Lyra could crawl around a little more
Here she is practicing her "walking" skills she had a blast and was very excited to climb over the other babies
Cute black and white shot because when the baby grabs your phone she pushes buttons without you realizing it
She wants to play ball again but sissy was busy on the slide
Here she is climbing over her toys to get to other toys... In a bad mommy moment earlier this week I put the castle up so she wouldn't climb on it and fall while I was in the bathroom and instead she pulled it down on top of herself.  I hear a crash and a cry and ask Hokky what happened and she just shrugs, "Lyra dropped the castle on her head"
Sucess she is happy to have her baby doll which she hugs and cuddles and pats over her shoulder like a little mommy!
Here she is changed into her PJs playing with said castle... It's 4am and dark, thus the closed eyes from the flash. It's about time to try bed again... Good night

Monday, October 13, 2014

Playing already!

I just saw this old post never got posted - from April

Today Holly and her little sister played princess.
When Lyra was getting bored watching mommy make lunch holly says "my sister wants me"
And she was right, Lyra stopped fussing right away and tried to grab and hold princesses 
Into her mouth they went as soon as she could get a hold of it.
Later they played pirate and big sister gave some cuddles 

Sponsor Holly @ the MX Walk-a-Thon

Dear Friends and Family,

Please consider supporting Holly and her fabulous public school, Malcolm X Elementary, by making a pledge to this Saturday's Walk-a-Thon.  The students will walk laps, hula hoop, read books, and run sprints to raise money for many important programs. 

Donations will support classroom supplies, drama, dance, music, gardening and other enrichment programs for all the children at Malcolm X Elementary. These programs would not exist as they do without PTA support. Last year's Walk-a-Thon raised $25,000 for the school. 

You can pledge either a flat amount or make a per-lap pledge. Classes with the most pledges will win prizes.  Please let me know as soon as possible if you are willing to donate. The donation form is due at the Walk-a-thon on Saturday October 18th and Funds based on laps walked need to be turned in by

Holly is excited to be walking laps for her school. I hope you’ll support her efforts.


Holly and Vicki

Friday, October 10, 2014

It's been too long

I'm sitting on the couch, Lyra is in my lap asleep and its 1:30 am.  I'm not sure what to do with myself as she usually doesn't go to sleep until like 3:00 or 4:00 am... I'm used to it now and tonight I'm not exhausted yet so I'm wondering if I dare risk moving her, which inevitably will result in her waking up feeling rested though its been only 15 minutes... Or if I steal a few precious moments to myself.  Most nights I do get to watch some tv in the background while we play... But rarely do I get quiet time to concentrate, and especially not on the iPad as she at just 10 months is already addicted and will steal it away to play itsy bitsy spider or fish school... Her two favorite apps.

I should be updating quicken since I discovered today it seems I have not done that in an even longer time then my last neglected blog update... But I dislike windows whatever it is on my new laptop and since my old laptop broke I can't unplug it to bring it to the couch... Plus there is that getting up and waking the baby thing... So instead... Here I am.  Maybe this will be the start of a new habit, the baby naps, I write a quick blog update.... It could happen...

So what's new?

Well Lyra is doing great... Sort of.. Somehow it seems my good eater, the child who eats everything all the time is somehow not eating enough.  She is healthy but she went from 10% to 4% in weight and is only 16.5lbs this doesn't take into account she was 3.5 weeks early but her weight gain has dropped compared to her height which jumped to 37% though I was told that measurement is subjective and therefor not as important.  Yes the baby who eats like 6 cherry tomatoes, a banana, and a string cheese plus puffs, Cheerios, grapes and whatever other random food is around in one sitting needs to eat more.  I think the pediatrician was more concerned that she doesn't sit down for regular meals but snacks all day long on whatever we are eating at any given time... So my new plan is to strap her in three times a day to feed her, her own food in addition to whatever else we are eating randomly all day long...

Today she had a packet of broccoli and apple and this morning it was pumpkin, pear and spinach... I upgraded to the 4 ounce pouches from the 2 ounce containers and when she gets fussy and distracted I push for her to eat a bit longer.. She prefers to feed herself but it seems she isn't getting enough calories with finger foods yet. I also realized she often eats half my yogurt but its low fat low calorie yogurt instead of the full fat baby stuff, so I need to be careful of that... I think I'll order avocados from Farmigo again this week and see how she likes them.  Last time she was picky about the flavor vs ripeness... I really expected her to weigh like 18 pounds the way she eats... But she is super active and scooting and cruising all over the house now so she is burning the calories too.  The other day at Costco they had food samples, one was a pita bread with ham and pesto 1/4 sandwich. I intended to give her a little nibble of the bread but she grabbed the whole thing and ate it all up.. Next was a cheese burger and she ate a 1/4 piece of that and last was a cup of yogurt.

But it's not really a major concern just something to keep an eye on.  Developmentally she is doing everything she should be... And with her sister teaching her even more.  She even initiates games like bringing  you the blanket for peek a boo or high fives or handing you the squeeker friend to nuzzle her, she moves my hand to tickle her and turns my face to look at her if I'm distracted.  Daddy and Holly were playing Legos with Lyra and building towers for her to knock down but instead she tried to put them together. She is clapping, grasping, kind of pointing and the other day she was hiding her princess doll under her pop up toy as if she was playing peek a boo with it.  Although she is not crawling traditionally (holly never did either) she scoots all over and pulls up and cruises all over.. She even uses toys, bins, and boxes as push walkers and tries to climb up on them to reach higher... Holly is adorable and now that I let her pick Lyra up (under the armpits around her chest) she transports her around the house whenever she is naughty and sneaks into Holly's room or the bathroom which I will embarrassingly  admit she discovered the toilet is fun to splash in when I had my back turned making lunch for like 2 minutes. So now holly is responsible for helping mommy watch sissy when I leave the room.

Speaking of Holly she is a wonderful big sister, entertaining Lyra to no end, playing games with her doing princess, dolls, blocks, and has endless patience with her sticking fingers in her mouth, pulling her hair, and stealing crayons for snacks (see I really must feed her more ;-) they are each other's biggest fans and they only get cuter together the older Lyra gets.  And of course Holly is busy as ever... She is a first grader now with Daily homework, a math sheet and three books to read, and she is such a good reader.  Lyra loves reading too and listening to sissy read to her is a favorite.  Holly reports that first grade is hard and its no fair that they don't get free choice time anymore but she still loves school and almost everyday is filled with one extra fun thing thing like music, art, gardening, PE, and of course nippy time... The pet Guinnie Pig who I'm sure we will be babysitting one of these holiday weekends. Holly is also now taking three Afterschool classes, Ceramics, Toyology, and Cooking.  This week she made a giant yoyo with two bowls and washer and bolts.  Last week she made a robot helicopter that dances with wire and a battery circuit to turn on and off.  In cooking they have a different theme country each week... Last week was Latkes from Israel and they told a story about the Wise Fairy Frog.. This week is Burma... And though she didn't eat the food she saved some for Lyra and had a great time slicing and dicing and even did the onions though they made her eyes burn a little.

Inspired by cooking class she announced last weekend that she was making brownies and so she did!  We also have swimming weekly and sometimes ice skating.  Right now we have Tuesdays free and try to spend those afternoons either playing with old friends of arranging play dates with classmates which the kids scheme on their own and later inform me of the plans, luckily its pretty easy for me to comply even last minute as long as her friends parents don't mind.  This week we joined one of her classmates in her Ballet Class.. It was some where between strict practice and open play, in the end of course  she said she loved it and wants to sign up, though I'm not sure if I want to add something else permanent to the schedule. The school allows us three trials so if I take her every few weeks this fall I  can postpone the commitment till the spring class (after cooking, ceramics, and Toyology end) and make sure she is serious. I was worried because when we arrived she got suddenly very anxious hid behind me and even cried.  Insisted I stay in the room.. The teacher was very sweet and accommodating, but it was a brand new place with 7 girls she didn't know and her one school friend, but her school friend knew the other kids and her school friend is a new kid who just moved to Berkeley from Paris, so they've only known each other 6 weeks.  Ava jane was running around paying and it was hard for Holly to join in.. It had been a while since we went somewhere completely new so of course it's easy to forget how bad her anxiety can be... But with humor she over came it.. The girls were sitting in a circle reviewing the class rules with the teacher and one said, "absolutely no climbing on your friends heads". Holly went from anxious tears to giggles... A few more funny comments later she gave me a thumbs up and then about 5 minutes into the bar practice doing PliĆ©s she said mommy I think I've got it now, you can go. So Lyra and I went to the waiting area and she enjoyed the rest of class.. Afterwards she said she learned the nutcracker dance.

This week we also had the treat of getting to babysit Mimi for an hour while her mom was at a meeting and then all went out to dinner together.  Now that we aren't doing gymnastics weekly, not seeing Mimi has been especially hard.  But we make an effort to get together, last month the girls had a sleepover which was a nice treat.  She was excited to see all her old playgroup friends recently at a Head Over Heels kids night out.  In some cases it had been months since our last get together which we are all sad about, but with every one of us at a different school on different break calendars and school hours its hard to find the time.  Even this week Holly has Monday off for Columbus Day / Staff Development but her friends had Friday off instead. 

This weekend she is excited to go to Disney on Ice, it will be the first time they are doing the Disney Fairies, and should be a lot of fun.. Though she would never admit it and doesn't even realize it there is some regression and typical new sibling jealousy.. This shows the most at bedtime where she insists mommy puts her to bed now though it had been daddy's job for years now and when she is really tired cries to sleep in our bed.  She adores her sister but I know subconsciously having to share all of her time with Lyra must be hard... This weekend Disney on Ice will be a Mommy and Holly only date, we've had a few... A movie, the circus, but I really want to do it more... Not that I have time to fit it anywhere in the schedule, but she's figured out that at bedtime she has my undivided attention and since I'm much less strict then daddy we often spend twenty minutes chatting about her day in the dark, it's a precious time and its when her fears and worries come out which I so great full she can express and articulate them to some extent and is willing to share them still one day she might not be so forthright... But for now we will pretend that she will never be a teenager :-) its also when she shares her hopes and dreams.. So while sometimes at the end if the day it's hard to do and I'm tired and Lyra is whining its definitely worth it.... And with that I bid you goodnight... Lets hope Lyra stays asleep as I transfer her to bed as tomorrow she is hosting a baby play date while Holly is in Cooking class.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Dying Eggs

I really aught to have Tanta do a guest post, she took about 500 pics of us making eggs, these are the only ones I got as I was juggling Lyra.  But you get the idea!  Hopefully Tanta will post some pictures today.  

It was lots of fun, I had asked Tanta to boil eggs for us as we were on our way home but didn't realize I only had brown eggs.  She boiled 7 but then I couldn't find the decorating kit so I ran to walgreens to get a new one. I Aldo picked up another dozen of white eggs.

We got started dying and one one hand the brown eggs were not taking the color great, but it was still so much fun we decided to boil another 5.  But then those were so much fun that we boiled another 5 for 17 in all. 

We had a special white crayon that would keep the dye out so we could draw pictures on the eggs, that was my favorite part.  Kat's favorite part was mixing colors on the eggs and holding them in a second color after the first dye.

Holly's favorite part was putting them in to soak and then checking on them several times.

It was fun to see how they turned out.  After they dried we put stickers on a few.

Yesterday I ate done for breakfast and Holly asked to peel them, I think that was also her favorite part :-) 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Spring Choral

Last week Holly's school had a Spring Choral with the k-3rd graders.  It was a morning performance, so in spite of being up till 4:00 am with Lyra I wanted to take Holly to school and see the show.  

It was nice being up in the morning with Holly, getting ready, eating breakfast, and fun to take her to school.  Though it wasn't the normal morning routine, it was school seeing her classmates.  Before the show some kids ate breakfast, Holly decided to color.

The kids had been practicing for a few weeks learning the four songs they would sing, not only the words but the hand gestures too.  Those I think really help the kids learn the songs, matching the motion with the words makes it easier to remember.

Holly has been telling me about the rehearsals all week and the day before after each grade practiced they all got to stay to watch the older kids preform their songs.  Holly was excited to see a girl in first grade who recently presented her with a book she wrote, and some new first grade friends she met in her Wednesday fairy tale dance class.  She also got to see her 3rd grade reading buddy preform.

It was nice for the kids to watch each other during rehearsals, as the auditorium was filled with parents on performance day.  

Each grade sang 4 songs.  The kindergarteners were so sweet.  Every grade sang "This Land is your land" and as the kids got older their versions became more elaborate the older kids had more verses and their singing was much more melodic and in harmony.  It was cool so see how they would get better as they got older.

The first graders sand one song where each line grew on the last so in the end the sun fed the weed that fed the snail that fed the eel that fed the shark ect..ect.. They had signs for the word in each phrase and by the end had kids holding up all 7 I think,of course these were tto help them remember all the words.  Later the third graders sang a similar song but knew all the words with no prompts, very impressive.  It was a super fun morning.

Here are videos of the songs the kindergarteners sang:

This land is your land:

Mr. Moon:

Oats and beans and barley grow:

Four Seasons:

And finally after their last bow each Kindergardener class exits / this video is fun for Holly to watch because she gets to see every kindergardener as they walk by.


A few weeks ago we met friends at ikea!  It was both sad and wonderful, sad that many of these great friends that we once saw 2-3 times every week we are now lucky to see once in 1-2 months, but wonderful that the friendship lasts the test of time and the girls play together like they last saw each other yesterday.  Here is to hoping to see more of each other and making these fun play dates a regular event!