March 27, 2010


The title here is a bit of an inside joke. Lillian's cousins love a TV show called The Backyardigans about a group of characters who play in the backyard and often referred to it as Bartagins. Anyway, now that the winter rains are mostly over and spring has sprung here in California we have been spending a lot of time outside. Our new house has a great big backyard (by California standards anyway) which Lillian is at the perfect age to enjoy exploring.

Lillian has also been learning how to use new forms of transport. Over the winter she mastered riding the tricycle and now she is working on learning to use a scooter, we hope to try a balance bike next.

Of course proper safety is key with all of these new modes of transit, so we got Lillian a helmet. She was so excited about it she wore it all afternoon.

Lillian has also become quite the croquet buff as well. She likes setting up the course more than actually hitting the balls with the mallet.

Here she is hammering the stakes in for her own custom course.

Of course the most exciting form of transit is Nash riding. Nash didn't appreciate it very much, but he was a good sport as always.

March 23, 2010

Totally Entertained

What could all these kids be watching so intently? Construction equipment digging up the sidewalk near the park. Fascinating!

Thanks to Efsun for snapping this incredibly cute shot of the kids.

March 21, 2010


Last night we hosted our first potluck for our friends. We were a bit less ambitious in cooking than our friend Efsun was at her last potluck but we still did alright. We managed to put together two salads (one of which was made of Miner's Lettuce growing wild under our oak tree), a big batch of Sangria and get the house into a presentable state for the party. Good times were had by all especially when Lisa brought out the frozen fruit Popsicle for the kids.

March 17, 2010

Babies on Ice

Last week I took Lillian ice skating. Our first outing was such a success that we decided to make it a regular activity until the outdoor rink closes for the season in a few weeks. This time we were delighted that Lillian's friends Ellie, Sophia and Jessie joined us in the skating fun.

Lillian really loves being on the ice. On our first trip she went from slip-sliding around, to kind-of-sort-of skating while holding onto both my hands, to skating while only holding one hand. This week she tried her hand at skating all by herself without holding on. We have some rather short videos of her skating all by herself.

Lillian all ready to go with her little tiny ice skates. Note the short selves, today it was in the 70's so the ice was a little mushy.

Lillian and Sophia take a break from skating.

Sophia and Jessie take to the ice.

March 6, 2010

Chandiler, Curtians and Ikea

We've been very much looking forward to resuming our weekend routine, (being lazy, going out for some fun baby-centric outings, walking to the farmer's market) but alas our work on the new house isn't quite done so we're trying to squeeze in a few chores to our typical routine.

This morning Eric got busy installing one of the last new lighting fixtures for our new home, a Tiffany style chandelier that hangs over the dining table. Eric has become quite the expert in home electrical so the chandelier went up in a flash.

After hanging the chandelier we took a little lunchtime trip to Ikea and we were surprised and delighted to find that they were offering amazingly inexpensive plates of Swedish meatballs today. Lillian also made her first trip into the småland playroom where she was able to climb and play with lots of other kids while we shopped for a few odds and ends we needed for the house.

Here are some pictures of our new chandelier and the beautiful new curtains that we finally got around to hanging up.

Lillian enjoying her evening snack of nuts and raisins under the warm glow of the new lighting fixture.

Kristen is very happy with her new light. And check out those curtains Elaine made!

March 4, 2010


A few months ago our friend Lisa decided to start having monthly potlucks for all the families in our baby group. The potlucks are a fun way for the dads to get to know each other and to give the kids even more opportunities to play with their friends. This month is was our friend Efsun's turn to host. As usual Efsun provided us with lots of wonderful Turkish food and warm hospitality that puts us all to shame. Next month it's our turn to host and though we're not sure we can match up, we will try.

Thanks again to Lisa for taking pictures!

Yum, look at all that good food! Lillian wants some of that.

Eric helps himself to some too.

We managed to get almost all the kids lined up on the couch for a photo until Samuel (the only little boy in the bunch not counting baby Marc) decided to escape.

March 1, 2010


Spring has come again, and these days that means it is birthday season. Lillian has been talking about birthdays since last summer when the previous wave of partying ran its course (with a brief interlude for Christmas in between). She's been waiting for parties and cake for quite a long time, and finally it is happening!

Ellie's birthday is one of the first in the bunch, this year Ellie had her birthday party at the "Little Gym". The party featured a program that incuded lots of running, bouncing and playing. The first activity involved the kids lining up to slam themselves into a giant cake shaped mat while the other kids chanted "slam that cake". Lillian was so excited at the prospect of slamming the cake that she kept trying to cut in line. She also had a great time using the gymnastics equipment.

Thanks to Lisa and her snazzy new camera we actually have some images from the big event.

Lillian patiently waiting for instruction.

Lillian and Jessie on the uneven bars, those two have been pretty inseparable lately.

When Lillian saw this picture on the computer she said "That was Ellie's party, I was pretty there!". Yes, yes she was.

Lillian's daddy helps her out on the balance beam while Jessie cheers her on.