In addition to this very accurate response, Vansen's vocabulary has exploded in the last few weeks. Loving the full sentances and use of syntax (he watches a lot more TV than we let Huelan watch when she was his age). We can tell he's getting a lot of satisfaction out of finally being communicate to us what he wants. This is a fun time, and I'm convinced that this is the cutest period in a toddler's development, when they're just starting to really express themselves and we get our first glimpses of what's really going on inside that head of his.
Up unitl now, we kind of make up our own ideas about their thoughts in a kind of parental tranferrence. For some reason, I've been imagining a bigger kid's voice in his head who has just lacked the ability to form his words. Now that he's talking a lot more, it's apparent that he's got a two-year old's outlook and motivations. Unsurprisingly, it's usually food, bubbles, sandbox, horsey rides, and iPad.
Couple of pics from the BBQ at the park for Mel's birthday from a few weeks back. She's around chalk a lot (I hate chalk), but I've never seen her draw on anything that wasn't "supposed" to have chalk on it. In the top pic, she's writing on a tree. She had to have me help her spell the phrase "Don't Pee." And an arrow pointing down the tree to the ground. I have no idea, but as you can see she gave herself a big kick out of it.
There happened to be a birthday party a few tables down from us. Huelan was eyeing the pinata (it was a large, deluxe one, and she was impressed). Well, I watched her creeping closer and closer to it, scoping out the kids to see who would be important enough to deserve such a remarkable pinata. She eventually made friends, basically crashing their party, scooped up some pinata candy, and walked out with a goody bag to boot. Not sure if I should be proud, embarrassed, or chastising. In the end, I just let her enjoy the fruits of her charm and persistence, like any decent father who is also a career salesperson would. Not sure that there's a better tack to take with that one... opinions?
It has been a long journey with getting adjusted with having this little guy here with us. Life as we know it has changed and we aren't complaining one bit.
Caleb came to us two weeks prior to our expected due date on Saturday, May 9th, 2015 at 6:54AM, the day before Mother’s Day. Caleb weighed in at 7lbs. 8oz. and was 20 inches long.
Mommy was in labor starting that previous Wednesday, May 6th in the early evening. During the time from laboring to the birthing, we visited the hospital a few times as contractions were regular fitting the guidelines the hospital gave us 4-1-1... contractions coming every 4 minutes or less, lasting for a minute or more, for at least 1 hour. I was in Sacramento in a meeting during this time and all I could think about was getting home. Luckily, Patty is a tough one and held out til I made it back. When I did eventually get home, we took our first trip to the hospital where she and the baby were examined but weren’t ready to be admitted. The contractions progressed for 2 more days which consisted of 2 more trips to the hospital. The second trip was to check dilation and get pain medication per our Primary Doc to help Patty get a couple of hours of sleep through the night to prevent exhaustion. The fourth trip was the real deal.
It was Friday night and contractions were hitting harder and harder! We scrambled to the hospital, where we were told that Patty was dilated at 9.5cm! At this point, Patty’s birthing plan for a non-medicated, natural birth came true as an epidural (which at this point was not out of the question) was advised against since we needed to start pushing immediately. We made our way to the birthing suite and about 2.5 hours later, Caleb was born! Labor lasted for a whopping 62 hours! I have so much new found respect for Patty…that was some intense stuff. Since then, it's been a month and a day since Caleb's birth. When people tell us to embrace every moment since time flies, jeez, they weren't kidding! A month seems to have flown by, partly because of the whirlwind of feelings, feedings, sleepless nights, constant Google searches on baby stuff, more feedings, pooping sessions, diaper changes. Adjusting was tough the first couple of weeks, but we're slowly getting dialed in…slowly.
One of the toughest parts of these past few weeks was taking Caleb to the lab time after time to get his cute little foot pricked for blood work as he presented with slightly higher than normal levels of bilirubin and was a bit jaundiced. Kaiser, a huge proponent of proactive healthcare, was persistent with monitoring his bilirubin levels on a very regular basis (every 1 to 2 days then weekly). We’ve familiarized ourselves with all of the lab techs at this point and have our favorites to request at two locations as we’ve unfortunately come across several not so baby-friendly techs. We also learned what a Bili-blanket was (blanket with UV lights that look like a cool raver toy) as we had to have Caleb on it for a couple of days to prevent his bili levels from increasing further.
As hypochondriacs, this experience was by far the hardest to deal with. Fortunately, his testing today showed a significant natural decrease with no additional treatment necessary. We are so happy to have him here and he is such a blessing. All things aside, he's been pretty easy. His cries are 50% hunger, 30% cuddling needs, 20% other (dirty diaper/gassy). During this month stretch, he's luckily had a lot of visitors! His new Ba Noi, Ong May, Grandma Li (all the way from Virginia!), Auntie Kristine, O Bibi, Cousins Huelan and Vansen, Auntie Liz, Uncle Hung and several family friends.
We're thankful for all of the advice, help, love and FOOD from everyone! I can't believe we've waited so long to become parents! We're super blessed.
Caleb is absolutely perfect.
Absolutely elated ..... and exhausted at the hositpal.
Bathing in indirect sunlight.
Caleb saying, "1 month?! Ain't no thang... it was easy!"
These are the words that came out of this girl's mouth tonight:
"I don't like going to sleep by myself. I want company. I want to be a grown up so that I don't have to go to sleep alone. As soon as I'm a grown up I'm going to travel the world and find the perfect person to marry me."
I'm glad that Liz was there to handle that- I'm not sure I could have.
Sometimes they're cute with each other. Mostly, she's cute with him, saying things like, "He's the cutest thing in this house." She often likes to snuggle with him, too.
For him, on the other hand, this hug is more rare. When we ask for a hug or a kiss, 70% chance he just flat out says, "No." and walks away. In the mornings, I usually go to his room first because he's awake first. That's usually the best time for hugs. But when she starts to stir, he hears her and doesn't want me to go get her.
She's pretty good a sharing stuff with him and taking turns. Him not so much. He's in a "Mine!" kind of phase, so sometimes feelings are hurt (among other things).
But... sometimes they're cute, and those are the best times.
A rare week it was last week- we went out without the kids two nights in a row. On school nights even! The Warriors are making a run in the playoffs, and Liz is a lifelong Warriors fan, so she's amped. This game was actually kind of a last minute add- we were going to sell these tix but just couldn't, so we ended up asking Gosia to stay late and watch the kids, along with Case, the neighbor kid she has 2 evenings a week. It was kind if a scramble through the back roads or east Oakland, but we made it just in time for tip off!
Then Wednesday night, we had tickets for the Dodger/Giants game. Not as fun as the Warrios game, mostly because of the outcome (middle game of a 27 inning shutout). Oh well, at least the company was good.
What a nice Mother's Day! Some nice BBQ awaited us in San Jose, where we dined al fresco and were treated to some perfect weather. And a big surprise (on Mother's Day, wink wink).
But first, we kicked the day off with a quick visit to one of the world's newest mothers- Auntie Patty! She had the baby after a early and protracted labor. I'll leave it to Anh to fill in the details, but the beautiful, healthy baby boy who had been keeping them nearly sleepless since Wednesday finally decided he was ready to join us Saturday morning. Huelan is very excited to be a Medium Cousin (she's not a big girl yet), and Vansen said, "Bye, Bye, baby cousin." Really super cute.
Also, Huelan was surprised at how small her cousin is, and was even more surprised to learn that she was even smaller when she was born ("I was as long as his toe to his ear!").
Liz got her some (awesome) tickets from someone at the office, so she went to a baseball game with Sophia and SuHan. Great seats, sorry game.
I didn't feel lkke chasing the lids around the house by myself all evening, so on the spur of the moment, we made an evening out of getting Vansen his first haircut from someome other than my mom (I was in college before that happened), grabbing some pho (Huelan's request), and finishing the LAST of the Skittles.
This is just too precious. Taken by Laurie while Liz and I were at the Warriors game on Sunday. How she caught both of them in perfect poses is beyond me- she must have found the Skittles. And of course, Sophia always looks great.