Saturday, January 26, 2013

Andrew's First 100 Words

So here's a milestone.  It took about 4 months to get here, I think.  Some of these words are what you might expect.  Some are pretty funny, I think.  The ones without dates have uncertain dates of appearance, but it was mostly in this order.

9/26/2012 car
10/12/2012 up
10/18/2012 yuck (trash/diaper)
10/19/2012 vroom (truck)
10/26/2012 egg
10/27/2012 shhh (quiet/sleeping)
11/2/2012 hot
11/2/2012 out
11/8/2012 ouch
11/9/2012 dough (bread)
11/10/2012 go
11/14/2012 dump-uh (dump truck)
11/15/2012 stuck
11/16/2012 off
11/16/2012 keys
dada (daddy)
11/18/2012 duck
11/19/2012 oil (while baking)
11/23/2012 Hot dog
11/24/2012 On
11/30/2012 up-up (airplane)
12/1/2012 Honk (ones nose)
12/6/2012 dark
12/6/2012 cold
12/11/2012 peek/boo "boo peek" (peek a boo)
12/11/2012 more (word not sign)
12/11/2012 please (word not sign)
12/13/2012 awake
12/14/2012 Nana
12/16/2012 Papa
12/16/2012 bear
12/17/2012 dirt (dirt/excavator)
12/17/2012 ball
12/17/2012 wheel (water wheel)
12/17/2012 ring
12/17/2012 star
12/17/2012 all gone
12/18/2012 stick
12/18/2012 steep
12/18/2012 step(s)
12/18/2012 map
? zip
? bee
12/22/2012 pipe
? "up and down" (bus)
? beep
? doot (trumpet)
1/2/2013 "yack"/track (train track)
1/2/2013 tick tock
1/3/2013 bump
1/3/2013 donk (donkey)
? Wawa (Clara)
1/7/2013 hat
1/7/2013 cup
1/7/2013 pumpkin ("pump")
1/8/2013 heart
1/8/2013 blocks
1/9/2013 door
1/10/2013 yink (drink)
1/10/2013 boat
1/10/2013 hat
1/11/2013 letter "A"
1/12/2013 snack
1/14/2013 letter "O"
1/14/2013 snake
1/14/2013 steak
1/16/2013 jump
1/17/2013 choo choo
1/17/2013 boot
1/17/2013 note (music note)
1/19/2013 pigeon
1/19/2013 stomp
1/19/2013 house
1/20/2013 roof
1/20/2013 eyes
1/21/2013 juice
1/21/2013 fish
1/22/2013 ant
1/22/2013 blimp
stuff sack (packing to go on a trip)
bye bye
sho (shoulders, as in "up on daddy's...")

Bangkok: The One Where D Stopped Sleeping

This trip is pretty low key in terms of sightseeing.  Since I'm not yet recovered from my broken ankle, my plan was to just sit around the hotel with my leg up mostly.  So that's pretty much what I'm doing.

We all woke up around 7am and headed to the Grand Club for breakfast.  It was a nice spread, and D astonished all of the hostesses with his ability to demolish scrambled eggs, grapes, yogurt, and smoked salmon.  He also got to try watermelon juice, which was an instant hit.  The Thai hostess also pointed to C in disbelief - "Did she have all that hair when she was born??"

The day was filled with minutiae - playing with toys, walks with Daddy.  Nothing fancy.  At 2pm - his normal naptime  - D looked tired, so we offered a nap.  Which he took, and woke up at 4:30pm, the normal time.  We were like "WHOA, is he going to adjust to Bangkok time?  In a DAY???  Did we mess him up just enough but not too much?  Cool!"

We got to meet up with J, a colleague of T's who was here on business, which was fun and random.  We went and got delicious noodles (char kway teow, black pepper crab with glass noodles, and a red curry) at the restaurant "You and Mee" (Mee being the word for noodles) along with satay and dumplings, for if not Bangkok-cheap prices, then at least less-than-you-would-expect-for-the-Hyatt prices. D was acting really weird during dinner - wouldn't sit, wouldn't eat, only wanted to run up and down the stairs on the first two levels of the hotel (which he did with both me and his dad, taking shifts while the other one ate.  I mean, yes, he's a toddler, but usually when there is food around, you have his full and complete attention.

We got back to the room and bid J adieu, then settled down to bed for the night, a little late around 9:30pm.  D wanted to sleep where he had napped - on the couch in the living room.

Around midnight, he stirred and woke up with an ominous "boo peek" and a dirty diaper.  Those are two harbingers of being up for the day, and indeed, despite our best efforts and many many episodes of "Little Einsteins," he did not go back to sleep.  We rolled into breakfast at the club when they opened at 6:30a, and the hostess commented that the kids were up early.  Oh, you have no idea.  We offered him a nap after breakfast.  Nope, not having it.

Finally at about 12:45pm, he dropped in his tracks.  It so happened that C was going down for a "nap" about that time as well, so we drew up the shades and all crawled into bed to get some much needed rest.  Well, when C woke up to eat for the first time at 4p, she went straight back to sleep, like it was nighttime.  D didn't even move.  So we rolled with it and went back to sleep.  We rolled with it for the next 12 hours.

C woke "for the day" around 12:30am, and D made it until 2am.  So.... not really adjusted after all.  Or rather, adjusted by about 3 hours.

We have embraced this and the kids have both been out for walks with dad in the wee hours of the morning.  Breakfast turns into lunch, and we are all getting a decent amount of sleep. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Bangkok: It Depends on How You Define "Easy"

We're back, one small person larger, to continue on this ever crazier experiment in world travel with kids.  Our daughter, Baby C (7 months old), joins her brother, little D (almost 21 months old), in the craziest family she doesn't even know she's part of yet.

On top of this I broke my ankle at the beginning of December.  This trip got shortened and downscaled (it was supposed to be up to Laos to visit a friend and check one off the bucket list), and the doctor gave approval to start weight bearing 6 days before the trip, so we decided to go ahead anyway - not only to take two under two to Asia, but to do it with a gimpy Mommy.

The story on how the trip came to be is a mistake fare.  It was a pricing error quoted in Myanmar kyats at the "floated currency" rate after the currency had been devalued.  So we ended up with a sweet round trip from Myanmar to the States in business class for pretty cheap, the caveat being that the trip had to originate in Myanmar.  So we booked a one-way out to Hong Kong, and it being January with really low flight loads, were able to redeem four Global Premier Upgrades and get us all into Business Class on the way out, too.

Chicago-Hong Kong is flown on a 747, and we were in business class.  There are two 4-packs of seats (with two rear facing and two forward facing) next to the aft galley.  The downside is, it's loud and busy, and if you are a business traveler looking for a restful flight experience, you should not want to sit here.  The upside is that if you are a family of four with two small children, these seats are perfect!  They are far away from *everything*, especially the rest of business class where passengers might not like to be disturbed.

Traveling with kids is just made exponentially easier.  There's a lot more room to spread out toys and supplies, everybody has their own space.  The kids did great.  C slept a long time in her car seat, lulled by the white noise and vibration.  D ate like there was no tomorrow.  He took a bit of a long time to wind down enough to sleep on the lie-flats, even though we had talked about "a bed on a plane" for about a week.  He ended up wanting to fall asleep in daddy's arms, then transferring over to the bed.  Finding Nemo helped a lot.  He got about 6 hours or so of sleep on the flight, and woke up as breakfast was being served.

We took a mechanical delay out of Chicago, which delayed us about an hour, when we only had about 2hr5min of connect time in HKG in the first place.  Because of the crazy way we booked this (one way flight to HKG connecting to intra-asia award to BKK), we weren't sure how this would play out.  After we claimed the stroller at the top of the jetbridge and came down the ramp, there were two agents yelling for Bangkok passengers.  They asked me who I was and lo and behold, my name was on their list!  We had checked a bag all the way through, and apparently, that's how they saw my "connection."  Boris the Agent then escorted us through security and all the way around to the Thai boarding gate.  He coordinated with the Thai agents to get boarding passes printed, seats assigned, and checked bag located, all while flirting charmingly with Miss C.  He was awesome.

The downside of this is that I had to practically run the length of HKG on my gimpy ankle.  That wasn't so good.  But we made it.  The Thai flight was awesome, even with tired kids, who were lap children on this particular flight.  We were so proud of them.

Upon arrival in Bangkok, we found our bag on the baggage carousel, in spite of the delay into HKG - awesome.  And then it was a cab ride downtown to the Grand Hyatt Erawan, where after getting installed into our 1 bedroom suite and a light snack, everyone fell blissfully asleep for a solid 5 hours.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Saturday, January 19, 2013


Andrew pronounced the word "egg" mostly correctly.  I feel the need to document this.

Andrew has gotten eggs for breakfast almost every morning since he was about 10 months old.  "Egg" was his 10th word (10/26/12), but he said it with this guttural, wet "gggghhhh" sound in the back of his throat.  (I sort of wish now I had a recording of it, because I can't replicate it myself.)

This morning, he was cooking in his play kitchen, and I said, "Hey Andrew, whatcha makin'?"  He replied, "Gggghhh" - eggs.  Always eggs.

Then this afternoon, he woke up from his nap and brought me a book about the farm to read.  He pointed at the egg on the cover and said very clearly, "egg."  (Well, more like "ogg" actually, but considering where we've been....)  So.. that's it.  I thought he would say "gggghhh" until he went to college, but nope.  My little egg-eater is growing up.

This feels like a big deal for some reason.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

6 Week Ankle Update

Well, it's been 6 weeks since my trimalleolar fracture, and today I had a check up with the doc.

The x-ray showed that the alignment of everything is still perfect.  The medial fracture (the one on the right side of my ankle) is still visible, which means it's not totally healed yet.  He said that's normal - sometimes the joint fluid gets in there and inhibits the healing a bit.  And then the fracture line is still faintly visible on the fibula side, but it's mostly healed.  Anyway, he said that because the alignment is so good, he's okay with me starting to bear weight on it, even though the healing isn't quite done.  I'm to keep it in the fracture boot for the first couple of weeks while I do this, to make sure that the healing continues properly.

So at the moment, I'm able to put maybe 50-60% of my weight on it, which means crutches, still, for the time being.  And after having spent some time "practicing" today, my ankle is definitely tired.

I have quite a ways to go yet, but it feels really good to be able to actually do something to get better.  I'm hoping for rapid improvement.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013


It's the day before she turns seven months, and Clara climbed up two stairs this evening.

Guess it's time to put the gate back up.  Now taking bets on what age she'll be when she figures out how to defeat it. For reference, Andrew started climbing stairs at 10 months and was 15 months old when he started to do this:

This girl.  Seriously.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Friday, January 4, 2013


Andrew was playing with a drinking straw - the kind that has an elbow built in.  He put a second kink in it himself and started stabbing it down into the floor and making growly "vroom" noises.  I said, "What do you have there? Is that a straw?"  He told me it was an excavator.  (Actually, he said "dirt," which is what he calls excavators, in addition to actual dirt.)

Then not 10 minutes later, he told me the toothbrush case was a car and proceeded to drive it around the kitchen saying "vroom."

Didn't realize 20 month olds got that abstractly imaginative!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Pulling up

After a week of climbing up to standing by crawling onto people's laps, I'm officially calling it: Clara is pulling up.  On the couch.  And attempting to stand without holding on.  And attempting a very slow, awkward cruise.  This is, apparently, a nine-month skill.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: we're in trouble.