Friday, June 26, 2009

Happy Birthday Laika

When you wake up tomorrow you will be 4 years old.
This picture was taken when you were about 15 minutes old.  We were amazed that a baby so young could already be so lovely.

You still amaze us every day.  You are so brave, strong and confident.  You are spontaneous and you make us laugh.  You love your brother and baby sister.  You are smart and creative and very kind.  

We love the sound of your voice, the feel of your skin, and the colour of your eyes.  

I loved when you gave me an envelope that was full of love. 
You are our precious Laika and we hope you have a wonderful birthday.  

Mommy and Daddy.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

What did you do at school today?

Only two days left in the school year!  Leif has had a wonderful year at Kindergarten and Laika has loved her preschool.  Even though they are only 3 and 5 they have already learned how to evade questions about school.  So, "What did you do at school today?" usually illicits a response such as, "played", "painted", "played with my friends" etc.   Then later on, when we are eating supper they might remember something and add a few details.

So, it was really fun today when Laika's preschool sent home a yearbook that included a DVD full of pictures from the school year.  I knew her teachers were very well planned and trained and that there were always plenty of fun activities going on, as they have a calendar posted online.  But to see the pictures of all of the things that they had done was really fun, and surprising.  There were beautiful dancers, many visits from the 'puppet guy' and Mark the Chef, some guy named 'Steve' makes quite a few appearances.  There were magicians, musicians and cultural days when they learned about Diwali and Hanukkah, Greece and Brazil.  But I think that my favourite group of pictures shows the kids playing with exotic little creatures, toads, snakes hedgehogs, millipedes, some strange alien bug and of course a rosy legged tarantula.  
This photo was a big surprise to me.  "Laika!  You didn't tell me about this day!"
"Oh yeah.  Steve brought in some animals."  

Man, Leif really missed out at Crazy Lady Montessori school.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Toothless Wonder Learns to Wave

This afternoon I could not keep Tineke away from the window, where she was watching the guys with their blowtorches and hot pitch.  She would stand there babbling loudly.  Let go of the window and balance.  Wave at the workers.  Fall over.  Repeat.

Yesterday morning I put her on the floor of our bedroom to play while we could watch her from our cosy bed.  She was making all sorts of 'Hiya hiya hiya' noises and then she climbed up and stood over her box of toys so that she could wave at the teddy bears inside.  This was some serious cuteness.  I can't really say how cute it was, because it was way too cute.

See for yourself (and check out my awesome barrette)
OK.  Now that could have only been entertaining for about 4 people in the world, but I am one of them, thus it was posted.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

International House of Confusion

There are some men out working on the roof of the townhomes connected to our building.  When we look out the window we look down on them.  I asked the kids to see what they were doing.

Leif:  There is a German guy building a Mexican house out of Chiney rocks out there.

You would think that we tell jokes around here about, "A Mexican and a German and a priest walk into a bar  . . . but of course we don't.  So maybe they aren't actually doing roofing, maybe there is a German guy building a Mexican house out there.  

 . . . . and in related news (that news being Leif saying the darnedest things)

As Tineke is now crawling around eating all manner of foreign objects I'm on choking hazard alert.  So yesterday I run into the playroom and start sweeping her mouth for whatever little bit of paper she is chewing on.  I find a Lego 'bushing' which is a tiny round thing.

Anita:  Oh No!  I thought we'd got rid of all the Lego from this room!  
Leif:  Well, we tried!
Anita:  I'm just really worried about Tineke eating choking hazards.
Leif:  Well, you know what we could do?  We could cut open her stomach and all of the weird things that she's swallowed will fall out!

If this seems shocking, it isn't.  His favourite thing right now is learning about sharks.  And his favourite page in his favourite shark book shows all of the crazy things that people have found after cutting open a shark (suits of armour, purses, chickens, cameras, a moose).  I'm afraid we wouldn't find such interesting things in Tineke's stomach.  But thanks for the cool book Grandma and Grandpa!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Goodnight Comb. Goodnight Brush. Goodnight Nobody, Goodnight Mush

 . . . those are may favourite lines from that bizarre book "Goodnight Moon."  We said goodbye to mush about a week ago.  Tineke will still eat mushed up whatever, but it is far more fun to watch her suck on a long strip of red pepper, gobble up a triangle of watermelon, or try to balance 5 peas on her little hand.

In the same spirit of culinary adventure that I'm trying to bestow upon her I've decided to try some new foods.  There are two vegetables I love, but that don't sit too well with me (if you know what I mean).  Their names are broccoli and cauliflower.   So poor L and L are deprived, and only get to see these exotic vegetables in other peoples' homes.  

However, today we played chefs with a large beautiful cauliflower.  We examined it, cut it up, broke it apart, washed it and then tossed it with olive oil and salt and baked the florets for about half an hour - until golden.  They were quite tasty with our lunch and we all ate probably a few too many.

For supper, I decided to dish out the few leftovers.

Laika:   Oh no.  Not broccoli again!
Me:      It's not called broccoli.
Laika:    What is it again?
Me:       Caaauulliiiii . . . . 
Laika:     Oh yeah.  Caulisporin

Leif emerges from bathroom, where he's been washing his hands.

Laika:    Look Leif, more caulisporin
Leif:      Oh no.  I think I maybe like broccoli.  But I don't like the caulisporin.

That's OK.  Tineke eats quinoa and parsnips without complaint.  So we'll ride on her coattails.