buddy walk jealousy

Look! It's us at a Buddy Walk!
Too bad it was last year.
Seeing everyone post their buddy walk pics has made me a tad jealous so I'm reliving our first  Buddy Walk in Portland last year. It was a great day.
Witness: Sun, 3 family members in matching shirts, snoozey baby:

And not just because there were Mexican food carts to patronize after...

...oh but wouldn't a chipolte tempeh burrito go down good right about now...


our new weekend hobby

I can't believe it took me so long to finally buy the bike. Not sure what pushed me over the edge but finally I decided Today Is The Day and went to go get it. And having myself dropped off at the shop on the other side of town with no other way to get home was my insurance I didn't back out. It was a very long wait at the shop (never go to a bike shop on a Saturday, even in Laos) but it was worth it.

Nava's seat is an iBert (!?) imported courtesy of Grandpa luggage allotment a few months (6!) back. The set up works great! She likes it, I can keep an eye on her...only problem: when she falls asleep she tends to flop. Can't win 'em all.

These are the pics from our first family ride. Sunday morning, 9kms into town for brunch. Turns out Bloody Mary's can work as sport drinks. Who knew?

And yes, she has a helmet, and no we didn't use it. She was in a HORRIBLE mood and we just desperately needed to get out of the house and on the road. Next step: helmet.


2 out of 3...

Spoons! 2 out of 3 spoons go in the mouth effectively. So while gloppy sticky food definitely has a higher success rate than other textures we are getting there.

Oh and we always return the spoon to the bowl gently. Though sometimes, the handle might be the part that goes in. Whatevs...


asleep on the job

The blogging will resume shortly. Promise.


Family as Art

We have a wonderful friend named Toto. And while he lives in Bangkok he comes to visit us often. We like it. And not just because he brings us original art he MAKES for us!

And as if that wasn't impressive enough. last week I actually got it hung up!

Thanks again Toto! We love it!


getting Zzzzzs

We recently packed up Nava's pack-n-play. Can't say its forever, but right now using a floor bed set up seems to be working very well. I like that the floor bed means if she wakes up she can explore without waiting for 'rescue'--I'll do anything to encourage her to get moving! The floor bed is recommended in Montessori materials too I recently found out.

Look who woke up!
For daytime naps (downstairs), she uses a crib mattress on the floor plus a bed rail we inherited from leaving friends (Thanks Elissa!). At night she has a thin twin-size mattress in our room. We have to creatively pillow-border it because girlfriend MOVES at night--exactly the reason our co-sleeping days are over. In fact, we have a second folding mattress we keep right nearby so there's plenty of space for all of us to stretch out for storytime before bed or to cuddle her on a rough night. She has a real thing about wrapping her leg over things while sleeping. The IKEA croc now does an important job since I no longer have to contribute my head/arm/leg/belly.We leave her bedtime books around her so she has things to check out in the morning while mom and dad try to cling to the last threads of sleep...

Zonk City as Grandpa says


1-2-3 Jump!

Yesterday's Playgroup was at a house with a pool. And though the weather was meh it was warm enough for water so in we went. And Nava obliged to do her jumping on video! Can't wait to get into more tricky moves...

(BTW: It's only 6 sec and and usually I upload to YouTube but accidentally put it on Picassa this time. Hope it works!)


how could i have missed this one

yeah! G forces!
Can't believe I forgot to include this one in my favorite faces....

WISE 2: Khao pun is fun!

I wasn't kidding about posting on What Is She Eating (WISE). Just haven't had that much new food recently. However, this last weekend Nava ate her first taste of goat at a kiddie birthday party (Happy Birthday Maya!) and she loved it. To be fair though really any good tough chewly barbequed meat strip is her friend in these days of teething. The best part about her enjoying it was Daddy wouldn't eat it. Two surprising things my hubby doesn't eat that I do: goat and eel. But I digress. This post is not about goat barbeque really. I didn't get a good picture of it and if I had, you wouldn't want to see it.

But there was another funky food recently: Khao Pun. Its cold soft fresh rice noodles that must be one of the stickiest things on earth. They come in patty arrangement and you can't separate the strands. They only last maybe a day before going off-delicate noodles. We had some at home with Vietname take out; Naem Nuang is tons of fresh greens, small chopped veggie bits, chunks of grilled pork sausage, Khao Puhn, maybe some peanuts, wrapped up in a fresh spring roll wrapper and dipped. High labor, high flavor. Yum. Eating Naem Nuang would be out of Nava's reach though as it requires some serious chew action from more teeth than the girl's got. So she got to play with the noodles instead.
What's this? And how do you get it off!?!?!

Crazy sticky. There were noodles everywhere. I had to promise the cousins I'd only give her Kao Puhn outside from now on. Whoops. 

And then I remembered that Kao Puhn is very traditionally eaten a special (kid of watery) curry and finely chopped veg. So I warmed some of the pork curry in the fridge and plopped it on a bowl of khao puhn and Nava slurped it up. Yum.


ups and downs

I've been pretty pensive about Nava's DIY therapy these days. She's definitely crawling musch more and more confidently but its very up and down, one day to the next. And while the progress is noticeable, she is still not fully in the swing of things. She resents having to crawl for stuff unless its a game. The discovery buzz is missing.

Last weekend, I was very up because she has grabbed a basket off a shelf and investigated it and also came across the bathroom trash can and felt it needed a look. Both HUGE for her. But its been a week and nothing more than that to report. The investigations have not continued.

One cool thing that she did last weekend that continued: spontaneous stacking. I'd just covered some old forula cans in sticker paper for fun diy toys and as i was finishing up I stacked one on the other without a thought.  Nava came over and knocked it off (her favorite game) but then grabbed the can and put it back on the other one. I was floored-she did it without being "taught' to and was completely self motivated to do so (motivation is our issue round these parts). And that, that at least, has continued. Yay.

Other fun little developments keep popping up-she does a great brace and cover pose when she sees a huge yoga ball bouncing to her and confidently pushes the ball away (confidence-another whoop for us).

She continues to be a Dancing Queen. Just barely the first note from a tuned radio station and she's already shot her arm out and started twisting her wrist, open and closing her hand (her version of Lao dancing). We have a fantastic video of her doing a sit-down boogie for a long time (in which she switches up her moves every so often mind you!) but the internet is just too creaky to get it on the blog right now.

We continue to log meters crawled. For those of you keeping track it was in the 20s through July (as in per day. not. a. lot). Week before last she made it to 82 (woot!) but then was unmotivated all week, stuck in the 50-60s. Then on Saturday I came home with frozen yogurt cups and we got a game going and even once the fro-yo was a memory we kept going and at bedtime I totaled up: 96.2m. ! We had to re-do the math and question if we'd missed a decimal point. But it was real. 

And so, we keep on keeping on. Cheers to that.


favorite faces

I love taking pictures of this face. These are some of my favorites, that i recently printed and framed for our house. Must always remember to print!

Hope v Fear

There's a new book out that I ordered. Haven't read it yet so I don't know if its good ;) Its A Good and Perfect Gift; a memoir of a mother with a daughter who has DS. I read a few memoirs right after Nava was born. Two were good, one was horrible. All were about boys. Hearing about a daughter will be a nice change :)

I don't read the author's blog (didn't?) but went over there after hearing about the new book. And she invited comments for a giveaway with a question, a discussion prompt, that I liked. Not to get all heavy but I want to post it here. Click away if you don't feel like talking serious right now. It's ok by me. Really.

remembering to cuddle during a hospital trip
birthday cheeks

before I knew

My daughter's diagnosis with DS created fear in me, created deeper and more engulfing fear than I had ever felt (or at least, since I left the monsters of childhood behind). Fear about all that could happen, fear about all I couldn't control, all that I couldn't protect her from. Fear of judgement from others, from myself. Fear of the worst. Fear. Fear. Fear.

I am not a fearful person. I left home to be a foreign exchange student in a developing country at age 15. I've always chosen the 'less traveled' path. I am confident. I don't worry about going alone. I chose my husband based on love without fear for cultural difference, economic hardship, immigration woes. I didn't worry about a thing during my pregnancy.

So the diagnosis kicked me into feelings uncharted. The intimate unfamiliar world. I was deeply sad, mostly at night when my tough projected exterior of Can Do Mama started to expire and the demons in my head came out to play.

It took me the better part of a year to get out of Fear Mode and into Hope Mode. She's only 17 mo old so its not been all that long. Now my fears are more specific and justified and they are not the priority. Now hope fights forward. Hope for her mobility in the short term. Hope for her sight in the medium. And hope for a beautiful, charmed life that touches others in the long.

Its good to hope.
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