May 2008 Archives

diaper play

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Tesla is definitely showing interest in potty, diapers, and potty-related words. She appears to be trying to figure it all out. She watches anyone doing their business when possible, even lying on the floor peeking below the door when guests close the bathroom door and lock it so she can't waltz in to watch.

Lately, her new thing is bringing ALL her diaper gear out in the living room (diaper basket, changing cover, and diaper cream) and putting diapers on her favorite doggy, babbling the whole time about something that sounds like poopoo.

Boot girl

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Tesla is quite obsessed with her ladybug boots these days. They are too big for her to wear outside, so we let her do as she pleases inside. She wakes up and puts her boots on still wearing her jammies. I can tell how the things are going to get super cute and funny as she starts acting out her thoughts and desires.

capturing a millisecond

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Can you tell what we were all doing? Chez M & J's after dinner and wine.
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One thing I really wanted with the updated Kokochi template design was to shorten my ever-growing archive list. It was getting too long and cumbersome. I've always admired Anil's niftier archive style. Since Dav has been super busy, I asked if Beau could do it, and he graciously said, "sure!"

What I didn't realize was Beau asked Anil about it, found out Anil manually did it, got Brad Choate to draft code, then tweaked it to make it work chez Kokochi. Wow. This is why I love working at Six Apart...great teamwork and help all around even for personal stuff. A big shout-out to Beau for taking the time to install the Advanced Archive Widget, and thanks to Brad and Anil too!

in our DVD player

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We listen to music off of a MacMini, and rarely via a CD, so this combination in our player is understandable, but still funny to me:

* A Battlestar Galactica DVD from season 3

* "More of Harper's Favorite Songs, 2008" that Tesla got at Harper's b-day and has fun "real" songs (vs. specifically for toddlers)

* Potty Power, a DVD about "big" kids going potty that Tesla is totally into now.

Strawberry...was COLD!

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It was a very different year at Strawberry. Weather-wise, that is. The same warm, fun, and super kid-friendly community was there. And we even got to camp next to the same gracious couple we met last year. Great music too. But the weather was, well, wet and cold vs. last year's hot sunshine that encouraged play in the lake. The rain wasn't just misty gentle rain; it poured for hours. Luckily we were in our RV, and although we spent ALL Saturday huddled in the RV, we didn't mind too much at first. Compared to others in their tents, we were fine. But after a brief break Sunday morning when we got our hopes up and enjoyed the festivities outdoors, when it started to pour again, we decided it was time to go home...early. Couping Tesla indoors for many more hours just wasn't ideal.There were plenty of hours where it wasn't raining...and I've got a few pictures to show our fun at Strawberry. We will go back for sure, and I'm glad to have experienced how the festival came together and still had a great time in spite of the rain. Folks were out there watching the performers in the rain, people shared food and drinks, and as we tried to leave and realized our battery had died (since we listened to the festival radio so much from inside our RV), our neighbor installed a new one and refused to be reimbursed. So although it wasn't the best circumstance, I still feel it was worth it. Tesla too just loved being outdoors and seeing so many kids running around.

It's nice to be home though. Lots of laundry, and recovering...Dav is a bit sick which sucks. But even the time stuck in the RV was rather special. We got a lot of reading done, and it just felt snuggly as a family. Wet and cold, but overall good weekend!

Strawberry

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We are going back to Strawberry. Our immediate neighbors, Anne and David, introduced us to this super kid-friendly event. Last year Michelle, Jeremy, and Fia joined us. They aren't joining this year, but we'll meet up with Anne and David, and their kids; they've been going every year pretty much since it started!

Snug on my back

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Marcy caught Dav, Tesla, and I at the Bay to Breakers. Tesla looks a bit annoyed (from all the chaos around us), but I love this picture as I don't get to see her when she's on my back.

Kokochiino videos

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My artist

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I finally got around to getting washable paints for Tesla. She's been doing stuff with non-washable pens, in spite my protests. Weird thing is, I've seen her totally get into the brushes, water, color, mess. But this time, she was hugely fussy over her fingers getting paint on them. See this video of her hard at work.

I like the final work a lot, and decided to hang it up. I want to give this to my parents who have abstract art around the house. This might fit nicely. I'm really looking forward to all the things Tesla is going to create!

Purple Dyson

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After many vacuums that either broke or lost suction even though they were relatively new, we finally got a Dyson. A purple one! And yes, this machine makes me very happy.

I have to give kudos to Costco. I really dislike shopping there as it's just scary about how much stuff there is. But I always bought the vacuum cleaners from them because they have such a great return policy. This time, however, the vacuum that suddenly broke was a year old. That's too long to "return" in my mind; on the other hand, it's too early for it to break. After sheepishly calling Costco, they cheerfully said I could return it! Since I planned to dish out more $ for the Dyson from them, I took them up on the offer. I can't believe I used a vacuum for a whole year and returned it...but I am very pleased with their customer service!

breakfast by family

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We have a guest staying in T's room, so last night, we moved Tesla's crib into our room which was a bit of a bumpy night when, at 4am, Tesla woke up and wanted to snuggle in our bed. Long story short, when Tesla got up this morning, Dav bounced out of bed much to my surprise. He usually deals with mornings anyway, but he did seem rather determined when he got out of bed with Tesla. I heard dishes being moved and cooking, and wondered in between my morning dreams what in the world he was feeding Tesla (she usually has a simply banana and yogurt).

Later, I hear both of them making their way towards our bedroom, Tesla pushing the laundry basket (a favorite activity recently), and when I perked up to say Good Morning, I first saw Dav holding a mimosa, then peered into the basket and saw a plate with toast, eggs, and vege sausages! Silverware, a napkin, and salt n pepper too!

Tesla eats all our food when we eat, so Dav quickly mentioned I didn't have to eat in bed, just as Tesla started grabbing for my plate. So I got up to enjoy the best Mother's Day meal ever! And the gift from Dav was the pictures he took of Tesla cooking (and eating) breakfast for me (with major help from daddy).

I have to say this year's simple but very precious gifts absolutely made my mother's day. I'm rather liking this holiday :)

p.s. my comments are broken...so if you want to comment, the pics are from Dav's flickr.

OMG!!

Friday is the day I take Tesla to Karla's, her family day care. She goes once a week only, but she has a great time with the 2 other girls there on her day. When I drop her off and say, "mommy is going bye bye," she barely looks back and says "byyyyyyeee" while already half playing.

Yesterday I came to pick her up, and Karla had Tesla hand me a wonderful paint piece Tesla did. Pictures of her painting were attached with one showing her holding a card that said "Happy Mother's Day!" I can't describe how happy this made me. I know Tesla has no idea what it all means, but to me, it's sooooo special. It's the cutest, most precious treasure. She seems like such a big girl. I can imagine the many art projects she will make, and I'm very much looking forward to it all.

Yay for Mother's Day! And thank you Karla for making that happen!

p.s. click to enlarge photos.

Tesla's ba

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Sweet Rachel gave this personalized pillow to Tesla, or in Tesla-speak, a "ba." For whatever reason, Tesla decided pillows are "ba" which is nothing like "pillow" or "makura" (Japanese). Dav figured it out first, and when he pointed it out to me, sure enough, that is the word she uses consistenly.

Thank you, Kitten. It's a very sweet pillow. Right now it's on our sofa...later I'll let Tesla take it back to her room : )

Someone brought and built a real teepee. It was beautiful with the flaps using twigs to close, and the stick structure so elegant. I didn't meet the owner, but he later had a small fire going, and when Michelle stepped in, she said he seemed very much like a medicine man. Tesla was intrigued, and when inside, she bent over to yell out the bottom, "Fiiiiaaaa" so that Sofia would join her.
Us four: Sofia, Michelle, moi, and Tesla.
I took advantage and let Tesla enjoy the lake butt-naked. She loved it.
Telsa, Sofia, and their new friend Alabama, all picking at the pineapple dessert. We had to hide it or there would have been none left for us adults!

*****

My goodness, we had a great weekend! First, it was perfect camping. We had our RV (1st outing of the summer) so it was fun getting back out in it, but the location was just 2.5 hours from SF and absolutely beautiful. I love ocean beaches, but gentle lakes are so calming and very summery in my mind. There were just 40 folks this weekend (others arrived later and will stay during the week), so it felt like an intimate homestead of sorts. Everyone had their camp spot, but there was a well-equipped kitchen, and we ended up doing a communal dinner and breakfast based on ingredients people had. Mark Powell was our head-chef, and it was a great learning experience for me in addition to being in a kitchen full of fun and laughter. We ate at a great circular table.

The best part for me was how kid-friendly it was. I felt this from our last trip with Chicken John, but this time there were 5 families all with young children, and since we weren't stuck in a bus all the time, the kids had a ball together. Our RV became quite popular too when the toddlers discovered they could sit in the driver's seat and pretend to drive. At one time, we had 4 toddlers roaming in the RV! Tesla loved it. She was on the younger side so spent a lot of time trying to follow along, but she did well. You could just see how delighted she was to be outdoors, free to wander, and surrounded by fun kids. She is so tired now, and taking a loooong nap today : )

As for the wacky part ... the theme of this camping trip was boats, as in homemade boats to enjoy floating around the lake. We went out as a family on the lake twice when everyone got onto something to do a group float, but each time, we forgot to bring the camera unfortunately. There were hilarious scenes I wish I could have captured. Dav has a few though, like this hot tub with a working stove! Yes, that's crazy. There was a floating bar (this shows the bar section before the rest of the boat was built). There were 2 giant floating clam shells (salvaged from a photo shoot) that could hold 4~5 people. One time, when we all gently floated down the lake, 3 women got on one of the clam shells and did a coordinated waving dance so it looked like we found mermaids or Lake Princesses. At these times, I felt like rubbing my eyes; is this for real? This was a lake, so once we turned the corner out of our little enclave, there were motorboats and jet skis. Can you imagine these vacationers coming across this group? ... A packed bar scene, 2 clam shells pulled by decked out canoes or those old-school paddling rides, and last but not least, a freaking hot tub? Those folks must have zoomed by thinking, "What the hell was that? Where'd they come from??"

The scary part for me was that everyone would pile onto whatever and float out without much planning. Granted they took water (and beer), but me and a few other mothers sensed that no one was very concerned about how to get back. Like with the first test drive of the bar, a group got on and went on their merry way. Later, a few folks came back in a canoe to say that the motor (which was weak so wasn't good against wind anyway) stopped working so the bar was drifting and couldn't get home. A bunch of folks had to paddle out and get them. They did the same thing at night again. We joined at the beginning, but I insisted we have our own boat, and after a while I asked Dav to take us home. Tesla had a life jacket, but still, we were out in the middle of the lake in the dark! The bar came home quite late after getting lost, apparently. Not a ride I'd like to be on with Tesla, heh. The bar group didn't seem to care and had faith that each time they'd somehow make it home...which they did. Crazy but it worked out well, and everyone was happy as can be. I'm just glad there weren't any accidents!

Cute bonus: Tesla and Sofia providing goodies for parents :)

Dav's complete set of pics is here.

off camping this weekend

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We got the RV out of storage/parking, and are kick-starting our outdoor summer activities by joining Chicken John and a few hundred others for a lake camping/boat making event. Folks will make boats, and enjoy art installations and performances for a fundraiser for Chicken's next crazy project where he will float down the Hudson River from upstate NY to Long Island City on something he makes.

Dav is looking forward to the boat building fun. I'm looking forward to lounging around our RV with Tesla, painting the RV in preparation for Burning Man, and reading. Plus our neighbors are joining so there should be lots of relaxing fun.

Best of all is getting Tesla out in nature. No phone or internet for the weekend either.