I was in DC the first part of the week getting “connected.” Most naval engineering concepts and solutions come out of Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington. It was eye opening to see where all those folks worked and hear about the issues they deal with. Contrary what one might think, there are a great deal of very talented people working very hard there.
Just before heading to DC, the family met up with some close friends and hit the outlet malls. Our friends have a daughter close in age to our kids. Usually the dads would watch the kids while moms hit the girly stores and vice versa. Well, we were in Old Navy and it was my time to watch the kids and my heart sank! Were did Binh go? I started to go into search and rescue mode, performing an expanding square but initially did not see him. However, I did see a group of kids near the changing room so I moved in that direction… Ahh… Not only was I happy to see Binh but I was happy to see what he was doing… hangin with the ladies!
At the end of the day we all had good fun. Did manage to get some good video so I will post a Youtube Tuesday next week.
A couple of days cago Char was gone with a friend so it was just the kids and I. We were back in Binh’s room playing on the floor having a good time. Then all the sudden… Wham!!! Something hit me in the head so hard I didn’t know where I was for a minute. The only thing that cued me in to what happened was the fact that the toy that struck me was a battery powered Curious George and was laughing. Well, I had been playing with Binh so I turned an grabbed Ava by the arms and said No! you don’t throw toys! That hurts people, blah, blah, blah. Well the whole time she was making faces similar to the one in the picture below. She would methodically go from the “Oh” face to the “who0s” to the “Eek.” As I really tried to drive home the point that you should never throw things at people I realized that she was just being silly. It became harder and harder to keep a straight face. Finally, I gave up and just laughed. Wow, that hurt. I can appreciate her skill for getting out of trouble.
It’s been busy at work. At least twice a year, each ship program undergoes a review during which the program managers provide the contractor feedback on how they see things. Half of those reviews usually involve monetary adjustments reflecting the contractors fulfillment of the contract. Next week is one such review so everyone is busy preparing to defend their positions. Everyone in shipbuilding is trying to get better and sometimes adjustments are painful but in the end will produce savings.
Meanwhile, Ava and Binh have been growing. As you may have read on Metaphase, Binh is now on the growth chart. At last measurement he was in the 5th percentile. After that milestone I began measuring him using a yardstick and making marks with dates. We measured him in early December and then again about 25 days later and he had grown a hair over half an inch. He has gone from 2 teeth in April to a full mouth now. We are pretty exited about that.
Ava’s imagination is really growing. She makes up big stories with incredible detail. She makes up new names for her dolls and parents depending on her mood. For example, if she calls Char “Mini” then you must respond, “Yes, Daisy.” I think that is because in a cartoon over Christmas, Mini and Daisy are ice skaters and Daisy is wearing a crown. Of course, Ava must be the one that wears the crown. She may pretend to be Larry of veggie tales by calling you Bob or call you baby meaning she is the mommy. Gotta stay on your toes around her. Don’t make a mistake! She is not shy getting you straightened out. Her new big words of the week are hillarious, connected and painful.
Most of all the pictures we have been taking around here have been with Char’s new camera. I think she has a great eye for photography. I am pretty exited about what having a new camera will do for both capturing our special moments and some of the macro photography she is working on. I will post some pics next go around.
Char and I have planned most of the major events in our lives. We spent our first years of marriage having fun overseas, traveling to wherever the Navy sent us. After about four years our parents would subtly ask about our plans for having children. After about seven years they were not so subtle and soon after figured that we may have decided not to have children at all. We always planned to have children but wanted to have our fun first. We knew that we would have more than one and that one of every two would be adopted. We felt that if they were close in age they would play together and learn from each other. However, we never expected for our first two to be as close at this… Regardless of how much you plan, there will always be those things that you can’t control. Binh and Ava are learning from each other but not exactly how we expected. Binh has suddenly began learning a couple of new words and behaviors. The most recent and significant word is “Mine” and the behavior is… well you should just watch the short video:
Like a pack of wild animals, they will work out the order of things and settle down eventually… won’t they?
We have been looking for a church and tried our second today. We have not been taking Binh and Ava to the nursery because we felt it might be too traumatic. Bouncing them around from one set of strangers and strange environment to another each Sunday might take some undoing once we actually find the right place. You can imagine the challenge that managing a 1 year old and a very talkative 2 year old in a congregation might be. Well, Binh started squirming and kicking so Char took him out at about the halfway point. About 10 minutes later, Ava is starting to become more difficult. She just wants to talk and can’t really understand why the big guy with a microphone can talk and she can’t. I told her to be quiet about once every 2 minutes. We were sitting in the back of the sanctuary so that when we did have to escort the kids out, it didn’t annoy as many. We were sitting in a sea of white heads and hats. I guess there were hearing assistance terminals back there or something. Needless to say, I did not get the feeling that Ava’s periodic chatter was well received by those already straining to hear without interference. So now for the straw that forced us to leave; Ava farted. Not just a little one but one that resonated the pew cushion, which was followed by a gleeful and proud, “I farted!” No one laughed but me (understandably, it went over like a fart in church). How do you not laugh at that?
We would like to consider this next couple of weeks as a little vacation but its really not. We have to make preparations for moving what we need and donating the rest. With the purchase of our first home, we are learning about deductions and itemization this year. I am really looking forward to moving to a new place. We have said in the past that some in New England are… a little rough around the edges, but the friends we have made here are amazing. They are so incredibly capable and giving.
Tonight some of the previously mentioned friends got together at Char’s Bible study and had a potluck for us. There was a wide variety but the grilled BBQ ribs were incredible, again, what great folks. Char stayed for the study portion and I took the kids home. It may have been the first time I had to put both down together by myself but it was no problem. I got both ready and staged the bottles. Ava was first because she had less sleep during the day. I just let Binh hang out in the floor of Ava’s room while I read Ava a story and rocked her. Meanwhile, Binh found a pan and pitch-fork from a sand castle kit and began pretending to feed himself. At first I thought he was just mouthing the toys but he repeated the motion a couple of times and changed utensil position because he was having trouble getting the large pitch-fork in his mouth. Just a neat little moment. Guess we have to start thinking about letting him feed himself, that is going to be messy.
Char picked up a little book that came with a tea set, Princess Tea Party or something. After reading Ava the book she seemed to know all about tea parties. She looked at me and said “Tea Party!” and pointed to the little china set that came with the book. I placed the tiny set on the cedar chest in her room and this Youtube Tuesday is a sample of her impeccable service with interference.
Posted in Children, play