June 2006 Archives

Anna & Mama

Anna thought her new doll-size bottles should go on the back of her chair, where we keep her cups.

She really wanted to practice "cutting" her wooden food today

Anna started pointing to herself and saying something along the lines of "aaaa" today and she has really started saying "mama," too. She'd ask me to do something (drop a ball or dump out the cup of water) and then after I did it a few times she'd point to herself and ask to have her do it. It is just about the cutest thing ever.

She has all of her usual signs of teething right now but I can't figure out which teeth (after braving her mouth to put teething gel on her gums); maybe it's still her molars (although I am pretty sure I see all four through already)? She has funky dirty diapers and a stuffy/runny nose. She woke up early this morning and didn't take an as-long-as-usual nap this afternoon. She remains in a good mood while she's awake though (thank goodness!) but she is a bit more sensitive than usual.


I probably pushed myself a little too hard this morning. Anna woke up earlier than usual so I probably should have waited to eat breakfast until after the run, but I had no way of knowing she'd wake up so early so oh well. The sun felt pretty hot beating down on me the second half of the run (lucky Anna was in the shade all the way home and then mixed sun & shade on the way there).

I am really hoping for cloudy weather next week at the 5K. I am also going to run the one on July 22 with another friend so I am finding good motivational friends to keep me on top of my workouts! I am trying to decide if I should run tomorrow and Sunday or just Sunday.

I really want to run a longer distance (without Anna) on Sunday so if I go tomorrow, Anna & I will just go the shorter route. She did really awesome in the stroller today though considering we were out for so long. I was slightly worried about it when we were leaving but she didn't fuss once so I'm lucky that she likes the stroller so much already! She didn't really read her book today, either (The Pokey Little Puppy), she just watched for dogs and trucks. We saw about 5 dogs right away and then she was saying "more dogs" so I was glad that we saw several more dogs on the rest of the run.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 3.2 miles
Time: 43:49
183 avg heart-rate
00:00 LOW HR
04:14 IN THR
39:35 HIGH HR
8:40 AM, 70° and 63% humidity
Most inspiring songs: talking with Anna today about the dogs, big trucks, and other people we saw.

This Week:
Miles Run: 5.7
Miles Biked: 4.9

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~33.3
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 7.9

The Nurturer

Feeding her doll a cracker.

Now the doll is thirsty.

She needed a kiss, too!

Trying to read a story with the doll.

I put the doll in her lap this way because she was acting annoyed sitting across from the doll and reading the book. (Everything else was her own doing though—no prompting!

Anna was really into her doll this afternoon when she woke up from her nap. She moved on to balls, blankets, and puzzles though after we went to the store.

New Signed Words: mommy (finally!), toilet (introduced because she was signing "please" when I went to the bathroom), and elephant

Keeping Busy

Anna is still really into stacking her blocks but has also started to get into her puzzles and this ring stacker more this week. I think she is teething (haven't dared to stick my finger in her sharp little mouth to find out where) because she was pretty clingy at playgroup and signing and she has complained the past couple of days when I brush her teeth.

The last few times I have tried to get Anna to sit on the background paper for a portrait she wasn't going for it (would get up and walk away) but she was more interested in it when I was doing a mini-session with Bryan and she wasn't invited onto the white paper. She really likes the red chair in the photo but she can't get in and out of it without it tipping over so she thought it was pretty cool to get to sit in it today.

We have been keeping busy this week with Craig out of town (grandparents, playgroup, signing class, playdates, etc.) but we'll be happy to see daddy come home really soon!

Signing Classes

Anna started another sign language class last week and she added three new signs (cracker, monkey, and fan) to her vocabulary. So the hesitation I had about doing another signing class disappeared pretty quickly—she seems to enjoy the class, too, which is important. Every time we sang a song, Anna pretty much froze and stared at the teacher, watching her sign. We also got hooked into watching the sign language DVD a few times last week. Since we don't usually watch TV I was a little scared by her intense reaction to wanting to watch more when we were done with the video. She got over that pretty quickly with a few distractors though.

Our class goes through the end of July and it is close enough that we biked to it today. We were late though because I didn't allow in my planning time to get all of the stuff Anna would "need" to accompany her in the bike trailer. It took me longer than I thought it would, too, and I think it's because I may have another flat tire; I'll have to take a closer look. (17:47 minutes there and 16:35 minutes home—I had to stop and get Anna's water cup off of the floor of the trailer on the way there but she held on tighter on the way home.)

This Week:
Miles Run: 2.5
Miles Biked: 4.9

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~30.1
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 7.9


Anna & I went out together today and the weather was so much nicer today. Humidity makes such a big difference in my life when I'm running outside! We went a little farther than last time since I was more confident that she would be able to handle a longer amount of time in the stroller. I pushed myself a little harder today and didn't stay in my THR much, but I ran at a pace I was comfortable in so I felt good. I had a better time pushing the stroller today, too, since Craig aligned it for me and I was able to very easily push with one hand the whole time—very nice!

I did want to note that I had to make a couple of pit-stops for Anna: one to adjust her sun-shade, one to help her get her book that fell down on the footrest, and one to pick a flower to look at on the way home. So it did surprise me that I ran this distance one minute faster this week than last (when I was alone) and I still felt so good when we pulled back into the driveway.

15 weeks until the 10-miler.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 29:03
171 avg heart-rate
00:08 LOW HR
09:17 IN THR
19:38 HIGH HR
9:00 AM, 70° and 60% humidity
Most inspiring songs: talking with Anna today

This Week:
Miles Run: 2.5

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~30.1
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3


Anna & I are between the two bubble wands toward the back.—Photo by Adele

Grandma Adele & I took Anna out to the fountains again but she didn't really get into it this time (I think because there were too many people there and the fountains weren't as "active" as they were on Friday. There was a kids festival put on by a church today so it was really crowded. Anna got super excited when she saw the bubbbles people were blowing though so we checked that out for a while before deciding we had had enough sun for the morning.


I think my theory of never taking more than two days off between running is probably right. I felt better today than Monday & Wednesday although I didn't stick to my THR; I just ran where I was comfortable and then went faster across intersections for variety.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 3.2 miles
Time: 44:02
178 avg heart-rate
00:09 LOW HR
6:39 IN THR
37:14 HIGH HR
7:40 AM, 74° and 78% humidity
Most inspiring songs: Are You Gonna Be My Girl—Jet

This Week:
Miles Run: 7.9

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~28.6
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3


Anna & I met Craig in town for some fun in the fountains tonight. Anna was a bit timid at first but once she got going she would walk around all of the fountains trying to "catch" them, walk out of the circle a bit, say and sign "more" (to no one in particular) and then run back in.



Anna has surprised me lately that she already has a bit of an imagination. She's been playing with her cooking tools for a while, pushing her doll around in the stroller, making her stuffed animals dance, feeding them or me water or milk, and carrying the purse (above) around a bit. I gave her my old wallet for all of her "credit cards" (the ones that come free in the mail) and she really likes that. She also asks to have the dish towel put over her head like a little scarf/hat a lot.

However, what actually surprised me yesterday was when we were eating lunch. We were eating a peanut butter & jelly sandwich and I had cut hers up into bite-sized pieces. She started saying "car" and then moved the sandwich bites around and said "beep-beep!". I had never pretended her food was a car so I was pretty impressed. I was equally impressed, but less encouraging, when she started to pretend her fork was a pair of glasses (getting those tines awfully close to her eyes) at dinner.

She loves to watch that video I posted of her on the carousel and I did take a video while blueberry-picking yesterday that I need to edit down before I post. She watched that video and then would half-bend-over and pretend-pick a blueberry and put it in her mouth and say "mmmm."

I'm interested to see what she does today!

New Animal Noises: dog, snake, bear

New Signed Words: fan, cracker, monkey, wait (wait is actually old but isn't on the list)

Blueberry video

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I'm not sure what happened to the quality of the video here. I had to edit it in iMovie first so I imagine I need to fiddle with my settings before I save to then use the flash-encoder.

Blueberry Picking

Anna loves blueberries so we headed out to the blueberry farm this morning to pick some ourselves. She had a lot of fun picking the berries and popping them into her mouth. She also ate several from our bucket, but I didn't notice that she contributed any to our loot. Perhaps they should have weighed her before and after and charged us for the ones she ate in the field.


I felt better today than on Monday but still not as good as last week. The humidity must play a big part in my comfort level. Other than that I felt good to get out again. I should really go out around 8 AM this weekend and next so that it's not such a shock to my system when I run the 5K at 8 AM in a couple of weeks.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 30:20
168 avg heart-rate
00:17 LOW HR
10:53 IN THR
19:10 HIGH HR
6:15 AM, 71° and 87% humidity
Most inspiring songs: Pride and Joy—Stevie Ray Vaughan

This Week:
Miles Run: 4.7

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~25.4
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3

More Little Things (June, part 2)

Just a couple more little things I want to remember about Anna at 15 months:

She likes to practice walking backwards and sideways and she is learning to STOMP!

She has been practicing up and down. She'll either stand up and say "up" and then sit down and say "down" repeatedly or (more popularly) move an object above her head and down to the floor and say "up" and "down." It is super cute. I need to remember to talk about more opposites with her as I think she got this from swimming class (see it was worth it!) when we'd sing "The noble Duke of York; he had two-thousand men; he marched them UP the hill and then he marched them DOWN again; and when you're UP you're UP; and when you're DOWN your DOWN; and when you're only half-way-up you're neither UP nor DOWN." (bringing your child way up out of the water on the "ups" and down low into the water on the "downs."

The Jogger / 23:23

Anna & I took the jogger for a spin this morning after she ate breakfast. Of course the weather is a lot nicer this time of year at 6 AM than it is at 9 AM but I couldn't resist taking her out since I just got the stroller! Thankfully the sky was still cloudy this morning so at least we didn't have the sun beating down on us.

I felt awful during this run probably because I took so many days off in between runs and because it was so humid out. Yuck! I got above my THR almost as soon as I got going and never brought it down. It is, of course, more difficult to run while pushing the stroller than it is to just run alone. However, the stroller turns like a dream and it is much easier to run with than I had anticipated so I'm super excited about my find!

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 2.2 miles
Time: 23:23
180 avg heart-rate
00:07 LOW HR
01:33 IN THR
21:43 HIGH HR
9:30 AM, 73° and 89% humidity
Most inspiring songs: none today as I was busy reading Dear Zoo with Anna

This Week:
Miles Run: 2.2

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~22.9
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3

Father's Day at the Zoo

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We drove to the other side of town today for an awesome stroller I found on craigslist. I have been on the lookout for a $50 jogging stroller for the past month. I didn't want to spend much because it's not something I plan to use every day, but I want the option—especially when Craig is traveling. Anyway, I had been trying to confine my search to just in our town but when I saw this one I had to jump at the chance. It's a few years old but it is a Baby Jogger and very nice. The woman I bought it from said she got it as a gift so she was selling this $300 stroller for $60! Hopefully it doesn't fall apart when I take Anna out in it tomorrow, but I think it's in great shape. And Anna was really upset when we folded it up to put it in the trunk of our car: she wanted to ride in the stroller! (I'll post a picture of Anna in it when we get out tomorrow.)

Since we were already so far from home we decided to make a stop at the Zoo on the way back home. Anna really enjoyed it this time and I'll post video of her on the carousel (which she loved). We decided to buy the membership since we've been three times since October and now that Anna actually "gets" it, we'll probably go more. We saw a baby giraffe (March 15, 2006 and he was already taller than Craig!), big elephants very close up, lots of monkeys, and then a bunch of sleeping cats. We skipped the petting zoo because it was getting too hot & humid and since we're members we don't have to feel obligated to see everything each time.

Anna & I both took a two-hour nap when we got back and then we were invited over to Sara & Matt's for dinner so we jumped at the chance (Matt made a fantastic Father's Day dinner, by the way!).

I forgot to get a portrait of Craig & Anna on Father's Day so we'll have to do that sometime this week. I also didn't take her portrait on the 14th. I am really slacking!



Testing out a new video player so please post a comment to let me know if you can view the video. This is from Sunday at the zoo. Anna is riding the lion. Please note that someone actually "yee-hawed" on the carousel!

[Must have Flash installed.]


Bryan, Anna, and Amelia—of course my child is the only one who won't show her face

Anna had a couple of friends from playgroup over for dinner tonight (with their parents, of course!). We put away a few items that I didn't think Anna would be too keen on sharing (the stroller, the ride-on toy, and her big pig) and everyone was very pleasant (there aren't any unruly kids in our playgroup though!) and had a nice time.


Craig had to leave for work on time this morning (the nerve!) and I didn't get up early enough to run 3.2 miles so I did a shorter run. I'll have measure it when Anna & I go to our last swimming lesson today. Overall I felt really good and decided that I should never let more than two days pass between runs because when I've gone three it feels like I'm starting over again. The weather was great and there was minimal traffic (foot & road).

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 2.5 miles
Time: 30:13
160 avg heart-rate
00:12 LOW HR
24:26 IN THR
05:35 HIGH HR
6:05 AM, 67° and 63% humidity
Most inspiring songs: Tom's Diner—Suzanne Vega

This Week:
Miles Run: 5.7

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~20.7
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3

Animal Noises

Anna has gotten into making animal noises lately and it is pretty cute. I'll try to capture some video of her making a few later on. (Sorry I've been procrastinating posting video, I'll make a post with the links when I get it done so you don't have to go searching for them.)

Animal noises: monkey, cat, sheep, horse, lion, cow, pig (this is not an actual noise, but she moves her mouth in the same way I do when I make the snorting noise—super cute!)

New Signed Words: cat, change (as in "change your diaper")

Old Signed Words that I didn't find on my lists: phone, car, drink, sing/music, play, daddy

We're starting another signing class next week so I'll probably be adding to her signs list this summer!

Swimming Lessons


Photo by Adele

Anna gets really excited before our swimming lessons. Today she wanted to put on her suit about 30 minutes before it was time. She talks about singing and dancing in the big pool all the way there. But when we get to the pool she shows no emotion on her face and still clings pretty tightly to my suit. I know she loves it but probably just gets overwhelmed while we're there. It doesn't help that the pool is not heated so getting in is pretty hard every time (brrr!). She's gone under a few times now, too. She doesn't seem to like it a whole lot, but she doesn't cry and doesn't actually act too agitated by it, so we keep trying it each day (just one or two times per day) just to get used to it.


I ran the 3.2 mile loop and although my HR shows I was above my THR for most of the run, I was only 2-3 bpm above it for the majority of that. At the end of the run (the last 1/2 mile) I just went at a pace I was comfortable at which also put me at a higher HR. However, I'm sure I was able to run the whole distance because I stuck so close to my THR. I saw some inspirational people along the way but there was a lot more traffic because I left an hour later than I usually do.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 3.2 miles
Time: 45:22
173 avg heart-rate
00:03 LOW HR
08:58 IN THR
36:21 HIGH HR
7:00 AM, 67° and 67% humidity
Most inspiring songs: The Distance—Cake

This Week:
Miles Run: 3.2

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~18.2
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3


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Anna's current obsession is to build, knock-down, and re-build this "tall" stack. She needs a little help getting the last two up (since she is just not tall enough herself). She's been into this pretty intensely since Thursday so I'm interested to see how long her enthusiasm lasts for this.


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Photo by Adele.

Chris came out to visit this weekend. I hadn't seen her since August 2004 when I came back for a visit from Korea so it was nice to catch up and hang out.


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I couldn't go slow the entire time today so I mixed it up a bit with some sprints. I started in the ditch then took a path toward the road and came back that way. It was a pretty good route with variety. I even saw a small opossum (I saw a really HUGE one in Somerville, MA one night when we lived there so all other opossums are measured against that one). Overall, I felt pretty good.

I drove a loop near our house yesterday that measures 3.2 (5K) from our door so I am going to do that on my next run. Not for time though, just to do that distance and have something concrete and measurable to compare to later on. I am meeting someone from my mom's group at the local 5K race on July 8 so I'm excited to have that to look forward to and train for.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: ~2.7 miles
Time: 32:00
167 avg heart-rate
0:12 LOW HR
16:46 IN THR
15:48 HIGH HR *times don't match total time b/c I forgot to stop the watch
6:15 AM, 72° and 67% humidity
Most inspiring songs: I'm Still Standing—Elton John

This Week:
Miles Run: ~7

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~15
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3

Little Things June

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Grandma Adele knit this robot for Anna after I found a booklet of "how to knit unusual toys" online and gave it to her for Christmas!

I don't feel like I've updated on the little things that Anna is doing lately and I don't want to forget them so I'm going to try to remember now.

Anna is pretending to give a bear or a doll some water. She likes to push her doll around in the stroller and she wants her to be sitting just so. Sometimes we talk about how the doll is napping during Anna's errands and Anna will make the sign for nap and hug and kiss her doll. She'll also push around her robot, a puzzle piece, a cup, or other random objects, but she usually likes to push the doll.

Often Anna will walk around, doing laps around the house and lately she will stop and dance a little. She even has her doll, robot, finger puppets, etc stop and dance, too. It is super cute. Of course I intend to make video and of course I intend to post that video. It's on my list...

She has also gotten into using her shape sorter more recently and "solving" puzzles like her fridge farm magnets and the big knob puzzles she has. She says a ton of words and has added a few new signs to her vocabulary. We're trying a signing class later this month to see if we want to continue.

I'm trying to be more consistent about putting a spoon and fork down for every meal to let her practice that since Sam was so inspiring when he was here. He was inspiring for her to start sucking her thumb—just a little, I've only seen it a couple of times.

In preparation for Jacob & Sam coming down Rachel was singing The Stars at Night to them and I started it up with Anna again. Now when we're reading naptime/bedtime books this can slow us down quite a bit when just about every page has stars on it and we have to stop and sing "the stars at night are big and bright CLAP, CLAP, CLAP, CLAP, deep in the heart of Texas!" She also claps when she sees the star on her cup.

New Signed Words: airplane, hat

Swimming & Flashbacks

Swimming class was pretty much bunk today. I was going to get Anna under the water today but when I blew a puff of air into her face she opened her mouth (the idea is that she'd hold her breath for a second while you put her under) so I think she just got a mouthful of water (although I didn't end up submerging her the entire way anyway). The class basically consisted of "what song should we sing next?" and doing the same stuff over and over. Yesterday felt more inspired & structured. We'll keep going though since we paid for it and even though I thought it was a bit boring, I'm sure Anna is getting something out of it.

Instead of scrambling to make something at home for lunch after class we decided to stop at Chick-Fil-A on the way home (we've been there once before, in January). As I was walking in I saw Rosie, Jamie, & Jamie from Korea! They are in the US for a visit and they actually used to live not too far from us. So Anna & I sat with them for lunch and chatted a bit. It was fun and made me miss Korea a bit although Anna & I are having a great time here now so I'm not feeling in a particular rush to get overseas now (unless they would just send us to Paris!).


Today was easier than Sunday I think because I went on Sunday. I had an easier time staying in my THR although it was still really slow (perhaps I just became more accepting of it). Also I didn't have the problem of wet socks rubbing on my foot like I did at the end on Sunday. Today I stuck to the paved trail, which I'm sure was harder on my knees.

I found a ten-miler to train for in October. Hopefully that will provide some inspiration as the weather gets warmer (and warmer). I also plan to run in a few of the local 5Ks this summer. Next up: training plan.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: 2.3 miles
Time: 30:06
161 avg heart-rate
0:16 LOW HR
27:13 IN THR
2:37 HIGH HR
6:10 AM, 71° and 67% humidity
Most inspiring songs: none, really—it doesn't take much inspiration to go as slow as I'm going!

This Week:
Miles Run: ~4.3

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~12.3
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3

Swimming Lessons

Anna & I started swimming lessons today. It is just a series of eight 30-minute classes to get her more comfortable in the water. She has already been to the big pool several times, but I think this class will be good for both of us. We learned a couple of songs to sing to make playing in the water more fun; they taught us to show the kids how to walk with their hands on the side of the pool if for some reason they were alone in the pool and could get to the side; and they told us the techniques for getting their faces in the water. We didn't attempt to go totally under today, I think I'll wait another couple of days since it is taking her a few minutes to warm up to being in the pool anyway and I don't want to ruin the experience for her.


Obviously I didn't stick to my new "routine" while we had company—shame on me! I guess they were wearing me out more than I realized! Anyway, I got back in the saddle today.

I decided to run in the bayou/reserve/ditch today instead of on the paved paths for some variety in my life. As a result, I really don't have an idea how far I went but that wasn't the point of today's run (turned out to be a really bouncy walk, really). Today I tried to stay in my THR. I did not but I was close and I went really slow. And I feel a lot better today than I did the last time I went out. I realize that I will get in better shape and I will go faster while staying in (or really near) my THR so I'm going to really try to focus on that.

Here are today's stats:
Distance: ~2 miles (guessing!)
Time: 30:11
170 avg heart-rate
4:00 LOW HR
8:14 IN THR
12:53 HIGH HR
7 AM, 69° and 74% humidity
Most inspiring songs: Kung Fu Fighting and Stuck in the Middle with You

This Week:
Miles Run: ~2

Totals Since 5/14:
Miles Run: ~10
Miles Walked: 7.6
Miles Biked: 3

The BFam: Y'all Come Back Now, Hear?

No, we didn't get a good one of all three cousins together.

Sam: Take 1.

Sam: Take 2.

Anna: Take 1.

Anna: Take 2.

Jacob: Take 1.

Jacob: Take 2.

Okay, maybe we got one.

Grandma Adele spent her birthday traveling back to Colorado with the Rachel, Mat, Jacob, & Sam. I tried to get a portrait of the three grandkids for her birthday present but three individual shots will have to do. It was very quiet when they left and Anna gave everyone a kiss goodbye. Overall I'd say she did really well sharing her toys (tears were shed over her orange cat, the chair, the stroller, and the walker from time-to-time) and that she had fun with her cousins.

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