Archive for November 2009
Thanksgiving (both US and Canadian) has come and gone. Thanksgiving is not a holiday here, but D came home early and we spent Thursday evening eating take-out Chinese and then watching French-Canadian reality TV. Go figure, it was fun.
Christmas is now officially “on” from here on out. And this is the first year we’re not going “home” to see friends and family. Various reasons but the biggest are: 1.) 16 hour travel days with a 3 month old, and 2.) H1N1.
So back to the question, do we decorate? Our apartment is small and we’ve had a big influx of baby gear so far this year – there is no way I want to put up a Christmas tree. I thought stockings would be cute but I cannot find any anywhere! And yes, they do do Christmas stockings in Germany, though the tradition is that they get filled on the December 6th instead of on Christmas morning. Bah, I suppose if I stall long enough it won’t matter.
So this weekend we did a few firsts:
We attended our first social function as a family of three.
Friday night we went to a party. We arrived a little later than planned, forgot the diaper bag when we left, and didn’t take any pictures (oops), but otherwise it was a success. Baby A wore her itty bitty mini jeans which made daddy a little sad because he said she looked like a teenager already. hah.
We went to the big grocery store.
The big market has fresh fish, and a better selection of cereals, etc… but we’ve been taking turns going until this weekend, because well, we were scared. Baby A didn’t seem phased by the experience (as you tell from the photo) and she didn’t really fuss much.
In the last month she’s gotten a little less demanding which is a big relief – I hope I’m not jinxing us by saying that. Just in the last few days she has realized she has hands, and spends time staring at them. It’s fun to see her focus so intently. We’ve also been doing more tummy time, which she dislikes and proclaims rather loudly, but is necessary to strengthen her core muscles so she can crawl later. Ooh boy, not really looking forward to that actually!
At 1 month entertaining baby A mostly involved bouncing her around and letting her look at the dart board or bright lights. Luckily (for me and D), this past week she also seems to enjoy it more when we read to her. Unlucky for us, we only have a few books so far. I am expecting some packages this week to rectify the situation.
For English baby books I knew a few we should get and asked around for a few more, for the French, I was clueless and relied more on reviews:
- Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Eric Carle
- Pat the Bunny by Dorothy Kunhardt
- Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
- Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet Ahlberg
- Moo, Baa, La La La by Sandra Boynton
- Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson
- Petit-Bleu et Petit-Jaune by Leo Lionni
- Pourquoi? by Alex Sanders
- Le machin by Stéphane Servant
- Va-t’en, grand monstre vert! by Ed Emberley
Oh! As I’m writing this, the door buzzed, and yay, we have the first arrivals! This will be a twitterish blog post:
Oh right, now I remember. I ordered Room on the Broom in the big book format because a couple of months ago I bought Eric Carle’s Caterpillar book and when I got it, it was smallish and a little hard to turn the flaps. Eek, this one is definitely BIG.
Yay, now I have to wait for her to wake up so we can look at them together!
She woke up, ate, got changed, did some playing and then we read Brown Bear, Brown Bear and Room on the Broom. I like Brown Bear quite alot; the text is a simple in a good way, and the pictures are bold and colorful but also simple in a good way. Room on the Broom is funny and also has great illustrations, but the size of the book is ridiculous (my fault).
It will be a long time before she can read this book by herself.
I have a new and unexpected love for bibs, receiving blankets, and D’s iPod.
Prior baby, I had not a clue how much these little guys spit up. Bibs and receiving blankets are saving furniture all over the world as you read this.
We also love the iPhone/iTouch capabilities since the little one’s arrival. D received his iPod for Christmas two years ago but the only time it got a whole lot of use was when we traveled by air – it is great to watch tv and movies on.
In the last two months, though, we have used the iPod daily. In the beginning we used an app called Total Baby that we could use to record how often she ate, had dirty diapers, etc…
Now we use it to surf the internet, watch videos streamed from our PCs, or read eBooks, while putting baby A into her bed to sleep. It sure beats staring at the wall for the 30 minutes to an hour it takes for her to fall asleep “on her own”. I’m currently reading Pride & Prejudice and maybe I’ll read The Three Musketeers next (both are free, public domain eBooks). It’s also fun to re-watch old episodes of The Office.
One of our friend’s here got married at the end of September. I was doubting our attendance since we were having a baby the same month, but it worked out really well that D’s sister came to visit and we were able to take a couple of hours to participate.
The ceremony was held at a beautiful old church in town
with a view of the castle from the church’s courtyard. Although not easy to see in this picture, the photographer is taking photos of the bride with the castle behind her.
Inside the church:
The ceremony was in an interesting mix of German, French and a little English. Mostly German and French but the singer sung two songs and they were both in English. Amazing Grace and The Rose. It’s both strange and comforting to hear songs you know so well being sung with an accent in the middle of a German wedding.
We followed the program as best we could and even attempted to sing along to the German hymns. As the couple took communion, they tore off a piece of bread from a big loaf of hearty German style wheat bread. Then the loaf was passed around to everyone in the pews to also take a piece and eat. That was a first for both of us, and germs aside, the gesture was sweet.
After the ceremony everyone met up outside to congratulate the couple, and to eat and drink a little something.
They had champagne and orange juice, and pretzels.
Big pretzels. Yum.