It’s International

October 28th, 2008

This past weekend saw us road-tripping to Tucson, where we stayed at the Holiday Inn Express. While Stevel and his sister Becky did some treks around Tucson, car-less Vibble and I ate at the IHOP—the International House of Pancakes—next to the hotel. A lot.

The thing about Vibble is that she draws attention, and I meet so many people now. They just come up to us and start conversing. Any excuse to get close to her. So the first day we go in there, and there’s a restaurant full of pre-teen male gingers wearing scout uniforms and eating pancakes. As they filed out, one of the leaders knelt to say hi to Violet … 20 minutes later, I had learned the troop of 50 boys was from Scotland, here to see the Grand Canyon and other Southwest sites. The leader explained that due to the heat that day I had been cheated out of seeing his troop in their kilts, which they typically wear.

The next meal, we sat at a table with a glass wall on one side. On the other side of the wall was a little girl—maybe 7—eating with two men. Little kids make Violet go GIDDY. So there was much smiling and laughing and face-making until the threesome left, and we waved goodbye through the glass … but they went up their row of seats and made a U-turn to come talk to us. Well, ONE of them spoke to us. He said, “My niece wants to know how old the baby is.” Turns out Uncle is the only one who speaks English, and not Dutch. Through him, Vibble and I had fun making the acquaintance of young Ninka. (And yes, Abigail, that makes two Dutch references on this blog in just a few months!)

I also met a couple from Michigan, and while that’s not international, we talked a long time, and Violet tried real hard to take the guy’s Rolex.

In other news, Becky has come back with us to L.A. for a while, and Violet is finally cutting her first tooth at almost nine months. And now, your moment of Zen.

Gold Rush

October 17th, 2008

We just got back from a very California morning activity. We went to the Co-op to buy $5 organic eggs, and we did it on a bike, which we rode in the bike LANE. On our way we passed this. Vibble was into the ride, although she wasn’t a fan of the helmet. I can’t blame her. It’s a lot of helmet for such a little noggin. Also, she looks like a fireman. She’s out cold now—the ride wore her out.

We bought the eggs because her doctor gave us a semi-lecture on account of our not following his chart for what she should be eating at each stage. He says she is supposed to be getting strained meat and egg yolks at this point. That advice disagrees with a lot of what I’ve read and been told, but he says his chart represents the latest recommendations in the pediatric community. I would feel more confident in the truth of that statement were the chart not clearly created with a TYPEWRITER. I think I’ve mentioned how much we like our aged pediatrician. He’s a sweet man, even if he clearly has never used a computer. Anyway, we’ll try some eggs today.

We’re recovering from a lot of travel in the last month. The travel, along with Vibb’s new phases, has us a bit worn out. But it’s all wonderful stuff. Violet is now 17 pounds, a very efficient crawler with the cutest bum-wiggle you ever saw. She is ambitious, crawling further and further and pulling herself up on any and every surface. She is still a little off with the sleeping, but we can’t blame her—between teething and our flying her at unthinkable hours to places two time zones away, she is understandably confused. Anyway, she needs a lot more minding and is irresistible—she wants to play and interact and snuggle all the time, and so do we.

Little by little, she is making sounds not just on her own, but on cue. For a few weeks, she has been happy to repeat back a little lip-smacking sound. Last week she began to repeat back one of her favorite sounds to make on her own, “Ha! … Ha! … Ha!” Today for the first time, she mirrored my “Buh. Buh.” Still working on “Da. Da.” On her own, she makes “Mmm” sounds and others—she loves to sing. But definitely the most common sound to come out of her mouth is the “Ha! … Ha!”

So, the travel: This past weekend saw us on a whirlwind trip to the D.C. area for the wedding of Emily Freeland and Elizandro Salguero. It was a super-sweet event, and I was in heaven to be spending time with my college roomies and friends. They all look terrific and seem happy with their lives—careers, families, etc. We stayed in Laurel with the Modis, Jitu, Reshma, their two kids (Shivani and Sohan), and Jitu’s parents. They watched Violet during the wedding, and for Violet’s and my longest time being apart, it went pretty well. We were eager for our reunion at the end of the night, but for her part, she reportedly had a GREAT time (she just loves slightly bigger kids with their running around and animated talking). For my part, I can’t imagine better peace of mind than having left your kid with a house full of doctors who have raised or are raising healthy, happy kids.

The wedding was preceded by a baby shower for the bride and groom. Their family will be complete come December. A highlight of the day for me was helping Emily and her new stepdaughter, Jazlynn, get ready for the big event. How beautiful they both looked! The wedding itself was a fun evening of DELICIOUS Italian food, Latin and American music, and friends. The couple had already had a private ceremony, so after introductions of family members, the rest of the night was all-party. Emily AMAZED me with her third-trimester stamina. Oh, man. Super Bride.

Enough talk. Check out the photos!