Thursday, March 29, 2012

Baby Steps

Finally a video of Inara walking! She's still a bit insecure, reaching for us for help, but getting more and more stable.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Brains, brainssss...

I can't claim to have ever been the sharpest tool in the shed and I've always been pretty forgetful, but nine months of going to bed late, getting up several times a night and rising early is starting to take its toll. One of our friends back in the U.S. just had twins and accurately observed that 2+2+2+2 does not equal 8 when it comes to sleep. Granted, those first couple of months have passed for us and Inara sleeps much longer stretches nowadays, but my brain definitely has not recovered. Sometimes I wonder what people must think of me, especially when I go places without Inara and those who have children can't nod in sympathy as I walk around like a half witted zombie. As an example, I've been attempting to get insurance coverage for myself for several months. This is the third time the insurance company returns the form to me with a handwritten post-it note saying something like: "Looks great, you just forgot to complete section B." I have decided I just need to walk into their office and have someone look over my shoulder as I fill it out once and for all. I'm just worried that they'll start praising me for doing things most people are able to do without any trouble. You know, something like: "Oh, you walked here all by yourself today? That's great!" or "You did a fantastic job dressing yourself this morning, only forgetting one of your shoes!"

On a side note, Inara puked straight into one of my boots last night. She had some sort of stomach bug and puked more than I thought was physically possible for even an adult. Poor girl! She's better now though. 

Here are a few pictures from the last couple of weeks:

The Irishman in Andrew's class invited everyone over for St. Patrick's Day. Here's Inara ready to celebrate!

More pictures from that day to come later on.

Next are some pictures from Nouruz (Iranian New Year) where the Iranian in Andrew's class invited everyone to a fire and a feast.

And then some random Inara:

On the phone
She enjoys climbing into her closet to play with her shoes.
Enjoying a bath, one of her favorite things.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Inside Outside

As of today, Inara has spent exactly the same amount of time on the inside as on the outside (technically anyways). It's strange and amazing how much she has grown in such a short amount of time and how it's now impossible to picture life without her. In less than two years she has went from non existence to this little human being who is almost walking, laughing up a storm and saying mama and papa. 

June 23, 2011
March 23, 2012
She hasn't been saying mama and papa for very long, but the other morning we were all laying in our bed for our customary morning nap when she said it clear as day, right before closing her eyes. Now she says it a lot, but not always in reference to us. 

It's been really tricky to get her standing or taking a few steps on camera since she gets super distracted as soon as she sees it. I took this really dark video about a week ago while she was enjoying one of her rare moments in front of the TV. She wasn't really paying attention until someone started singing opera. By the time I had started the camera she had already stood there for a good while, mesmerized. 

This last video is kinda long, but cute. She played with that balloon all afternoon.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Deep Blue

So, before you judge, let me just say that maintaining a normal facial expression under water is harder than it seems. Ok, now go ahead and judge.

These were taken at Inara's swim lessons. We've been doing it since she was four months and for a while she wasn't a huge fan and would sometimes cry, especially when having to go under water. But, for the last couple of months she's been doing great. It's a joy to see how she actually enjoys swimming (very short distances) under water and splashing around. She even voluntarily dives in from sitting on the edge, screwing her eyes shut tight and holding her breath first. She also loves cruising around the pool with those inflatable rings on her arms. Next class she'll get to use flippers, so keep your eyes peeled for updates on that!

Monday, March 5, 2012

A Day in Pictures

Inspired by a good friend, I decided to use pictures to document a typical day for me and Inara.

5.45 am
Inara has already had her first meal and diaper change, and is ready to start the day with some light reading. The photographer was not as chipper. 

7.00 am
7.00 am: Time for a morning nap. We both seem pretty happy. 

9.00 am
9.00 am: (We took a long nap) and Andrew is feeding Inara her customary banana porridge before heading to class.
 9.15 am
9.15 am: I'm attempting to dress Inara who's attempting to escape.
 10.20 am
10.20 am: In the church where we go singing with a group of kids.
 11.00 am
11.00 am: Trying on a hat at the "open preschool"*
 12.00 pm
12.00 pm: Out cold after playing with the other kiddos for two hours. 
 1.00 pm
After visiting Andrew and his class mates on their lunch break (not sure why I didn't take a picture) we went to the adjacent library where I had a sandwich in the cafe. I actually got to read that magazine for about 5 minutes before Inara woke up.

Outside the cafe window.
Still a bit spaced after her nap.
1.30 pm
After seeing the ducks through the window we had to take closer look. 
   1.40 pm
Swinging and looking sharp in her new shoes. 
2.00 pm
Running some errands.She looks bored, but she actually loves watching people on the street.
3.00 pm
Back home. Inara finds the coffee table to be a perfect place to stand up.

Problem is she's just a little bit too tall to stand up straight and therefore gets stuck and then very angry.
 4.00 pm
Afternoon nap. 
5.00 pm
Dinner in the oven. You can see Inara in the babybjorn if you look closely.
5.15 pm
In the laundry room. You add one person to the family, but somehow double the amount of laundry.
6.00 pm
Inara having her dinner (chicken, rice, carrots, coconut milk, curry). We normally like to eat with her, but our food took longer this time.
6.45 pm
Daddy is home!

7.00 pm
Andrew and I having our dinner.
7.15 pm
Giving daddy some snuggles before bed.
   7.25 pm
7.40 pm
Inara is sleeping and we're sitting on the couch for a few minutes before the clean-up begins. Not sure why we're snookiefied.

* For those of you not familiar with Sweden, an "open preschool" is a place where you can go together with your kids free of charge.
That will have to conclude the day in pictures although knowing me, I'll not be in bed before midnight, but I think you've probably had enough. Oh, the pictures are taken with the ipod, hence the poor quality.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Spring Fever

The weather has been beautiful here the last few days and spring is definitely in full bloom. I find it interesting how life seems easier this time of year. Problems feel smaller and everything has that fresh, crisp way about it. I was wondering if it has to do with some residual sense of relief to have survived another winter, which was an actual feat back in the day (maybe still is, but in a different sense). Either way, I'm enjoying it and hope you are too!

Here are some pictures from our walk today:

Speaking of walking, Inara has now figured out how to pull herself up on stuff which is pretty nerve wrecking since she doesn't know how to sit back down on her own. Needless to say, she's had some bad wrecks. She is also able to stand on her own for small periods of time. I caught some of it on camera (also, take a close look at the computer screen in the background):

Since it's spring and she loves to walk more than anything else, I got her some cute shoes at a yard sale:

Pictures of her wearing them will come shortly, as it is about the most adorable thing I've seen. 

Some other pictures from this week:

This is how Inara falls asleep nowadays. She grabs one of the bars and holds on to it with both hands and doesn't let go until she's deep asleep.

This last part isn't for those of you who aren't into crafts, so just ignore it if that's you.

Driftwood and some metal wire - crafting on the cheap!
Inara's little corner coming together.