A bit about Alba: She's standing on her own for longer and longer periods of time and she can push a cart across the room. Today she actually took one step by herself, but it took all of her baby might. She's also crawling more and faster, but usually just as a means to standing. She has one tiny tooth and can say "pappa", "Alba" and "titta" (look). She also waves, points and claps her hands. She's weary of strangers and takes a long time to warm up to people. She's usually ok as long as I'm holding her, but I can never leave the room. However, when she's comfortable, she is very energetic and vocal, bouncing around and yelling at the top of her lungs. She sleeps much better now, waking up only once or twice in the night and frequently sleeping past 6.00 am. She loves banging on stuff and playing the xylophone and gets a huge kick out of our weekly visit to a children's music group. She also really likes animals, cooing as soon as we see a bird or dog. Inara is of course the comedian of the century, even when she's doing absolutely nothing Alba starts laughing while looking at her. She's generally very happy, but a bit frustrated that she can't walk yet.
A bit about Inara: One of her preschool teachers stopped me before I was leaving last week to say that it's such a delight to have Inara there, that she's so positive and helpful and a great friend. It made my day to hear that! At home she's usually exactly that except for when she's tired. Being tired is her kryptonite. Sometimes she gets in an awful mood where she refuses to do what we say and hits and screams, but it's rare and probably pretty normal. The other night after such an incident she said to Andrew: "I don't like when you tell me what to do" and "I want to do what I want to do." Hello teenage Inara. Most of the time she's very considerate. After I went to see a doctor about my hernia she asked how it went at the doctor's office. Since I explained to her that I have a hole in my belly, she's been saying that I should be careful and not lift and she's been as helpful as she can to try to avoid that I lift her. Today, when I was feeling a bit down she tried to comfort me by saying that when it's her birthday it can be my birthday too. That was so sweet that all my little troubles where blow away. When it was actually Andrew's birthday last weekend she ran upstairs to wake him up and tell him to come open his gifts and eat pancakes. When she got to the bed, she leaned in and whispered "happy birthday, dad!" followed by "I'm going to pretend it's my birthday, ok?."
She's very sweet to Alba and frequently comforts her and holds her hand in the stroller and while we're biking. Thanks to Diego, Inara now also knows how to count to ten in Spanish!