Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Merry Christmas to All and to All a Good Dose of Cough Medicine

We hope you all had a good Christmas. Matt and I spent most of the days leading up to Christmas with horrid sinus infections, which made us even more grateful that Grandma and Grandpa were able to come down for Christmas. They willingly took Amelia duty for a few days while we slept and tried every cough medicine known to man.

Gloria had promised Amelia they could make Christmas cookies together. In her brilliance, she pre-made the cookie dough so all they had to do was roll them out, then decorate. Amelia wasn't so good as the rolling them out, but was all about shaking the sprinkles. And she must be the only child in America that doesn't want to eat the raw cookie dough.

Shaping the cookies.
And decorate.

Amelia opened her one present on Christmas Eve and it was half the cast of Sesame Street, along with a couple of books. They were a big hit and had to take a turn in everyone's lap.
Amelia's presents to Grandma and Grandpa. She drew portraits of them.
Feeding mommy one of her cookies.
When I put her to bed we made sure to read "The Night Before Christmas." I've probably told this story before, but since that's never stopped me before, here we go. When I was little my dad and step-mother lived in the brownstone that Clement C. Moore lived in when he wrote that poem, so I had to memorize the whole poem and repeat it on Christmas Eve. It has since become tradition that all the kids in my family have to memorize the poem and take turns repeating it every year. It doesn't matter how many times I read it to Amelia, I still hear my dad's voice as I say each of the words. She didn't have to memorize it this year, but we'll see about next year.

Opening gifts Christmas morning. Amelia got a band in a box and decided to play with the maracas while eating chocolate. That's not a parenting decision I would recommend to anyone else.
With her purple shades for beach time on both coasts.
In a hoodie from memere and pepere.
We went to my Aunt Elin and Uncle Mike's house (I still haven't killed his plants and they're even getting new growth!) for Christmas dinner. Amelia had fun running around. She and her cousin Erik (who's a little over 2) are very unsure of each other and would not get within 10 feet of each other. She was fascinated by Erik's little brother Alex, who's 5 months old. She came into the room while I was holding him, and after tweaking out for a few minutes, she actually came up and played with him a little. He smiled and cooed at her and she was just amazed by him. She kept wanting to put her finger in his eye, like she does with her dolls, but was ok when I nixed that idea.

We hope you all had a Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

I'll Be Home for Christmas

Someone in this household who has access to a credit card has a Christmas addiction/problem. Here's the living room decked out for the holidays. I actually painted the piece on the mantel and there are Christmas light behind it so it lights up and the letters glow. (Side-note: I may have been spending too much time on Pintrest.) We have six stockings because Teddy gets a stocking and Matt's parents will be spending Christmas with us. Bill gets the smallest stocking. :)
Because there was an earthquake and we haven't had someone come out to clean/check out the chimney since, I went with candles and greenery instead. This is all decorative because I will never light all the candles at the same time.
We put the Christmas tree in the family room, because it makes more sense in there. I consider it a personal triumph that the tree is too tall to put something on top, even with the step stool.
Here's the Butler's pantry, freshly painted, with our sentimental stockings. Matt and Amelia's were made by his Grandmother and mine was made by my Nana. I would also like to point out the organized mail sorting station with trash can. Work Alicia is starting to show up at home now that I'm working from home. (Work Alicia is wayyyy more organized than regular Alicia.)
After multiple attempts at getting something on the front door, I finally got this sign to stay. Because our door faces south, the space between the front door and the storm door gets to be about 95 degrees everyday. We fried a real wreath in two days, had a fake wreath where all the decorations fell off because the glue melted and this sign was up with tape over the ribbons and then it fell. Finally I used push pins and now we're all set.
We did take Amelia to breakfast with Santa. While she was not a fan of Santa, she did like dancing to the Christmas music.

This is not Christmas related, but we're really excited about the way the mural in Amelia's room came out. She loves the book "Hooray for Fish!" and most of the inspiration for the painting came from that. If anyone needs a mural done, we have the guy for you.
View 2

Friday, December 2, 2011

Amelia Bear

Recently Amelia has started to get more into dress up. I'm am enjoying this greatly and helping by buying tutus, wands and other items as needed. (The tutus were on sale at Target, did Matt really expect me to pass that up?) Here is a round up of her favorites.

Amelia Bear (The Giants hat Kent got her) She's especially fond of this and making everyone take a turn at being a bear. She's even put it on Elmo, but we drew the line at trying it on Teddy.
Wand + Tutu = Abby from Sesame Street
Stanford Cheerleader outfit. Worn as needed to bring the Cardinal good luck.
While not an actual costume, we bought Amelia a drum and told her that was the only thing she could bang stuff on. It worked out well, for 20 minutes until she put a hole in one side. She still plays that side and the other (ripped two days later), but we might need to look into a sturdier drum.

I keep trying to get Amelia to say hi to relatives in videos. It never really works, especially since she likes to turn off the video in the middle of the recording.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Please take a moment

And read this piece by Bono on ending the AIDS epidemic. Today is World AIDS Day, and as someone who grew up in the San Francisco area in the 80's and 90's, I've always felt a special tug for this disease. Because of the work my father did, and still does, I was aware of AIDS almost before President Reagan said the word in public. How we've moved from Rock Hudson living only six months after discovering he was HIV positive to Magic Johnson living 15+ years since his diagnosis had been amazing to watch. I think one of the defining people for my generation was Ryan White and his early death. I remember crying when I found out that Arthur Ashe was positive. This is a disease that hopefully will be eradicated in my lifetime, and the amazing breakthroughs that have come in both prevention and making it a manageable disease are mind-blowing. But it is still a death sentence in too many parts of the world.

You won't find me saying many good things about President George W. Bush, but he did launch PEPFAR, and that will be one of the his finest moments.

So take a moment, read Bono's op-ed, and be thankful that we live in a time when medicine can make such amazing strides.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Taming the Wild Beast

I love looking at the photos we get from Angelina Photography, but I have to say the outtakes are just as good sometimes. I now present "Trying to get a family picture with Amelia."

Nope, not sitting right now.
No thank you.
I think I'll leave now.
Matt: One minute. (Translation - sit here and smile for one minute, it's not going to kill you.)
I'll stay, but I'm not happy about it.
I would like to sit there please.
I'm gonna get away..
Trying really hard
Damn, caught again.
Non-violent resistance.
Not gonna look at the camera.
Not gonna do it.
Did you just promise me ice cream?
I'll come back for ice cream.
I can have chocolate, right?
Whee! Twirling!
Ok, I have to get situated.
How's this?
Did you get my good side?
One last chance...
And I'm off.

We were able to get a couple of other good shots of the three of us, a bunch of one of us with Amelia and a ton of cute Amelia solo shots. I'm reconsidering my nickname for her. I call her Snarf right now, but after this I'm thinking of changing that to Ham.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


When Amelia was first born, and for awhile after, I didn't really see the resemblance between me and Amelia as much as other people did. Now that she's a little older I see it all the time. And while everything that Amelia got from me in terms of looks (except the blond hair) is something I got from my father, she definitely makes faces and gestures where she looks exactly like my mom. Since my brother Will and I look so much alike, Amelia looks like him, even more than she looks like me. I think she's also starting to look more and more like Matt. Especially when she's sleeping. It's adorable. 

And here I present the photo evidence. 
 Alicia at 18 months - I actually gasped out loud when I saw this one because Amelia does exactly the same thing with her hands.
My brother Will at 18 months
Amelia at 18 months

Maybe she does have a little of her dad in her.
Matt at 16 months.