metawidget: Sticker saying "you are beautiful" on a black background. (beautiful)

Posted on the Solstice, not about it (we were rushing the ritual to avoid getting rained on hard and to get the kids home to bed — and we don’t usually take pictures at rituals, anyway). Here are some pictures from late winter and spring. I managed to get back to work and do many fun things, so pictures just kind of accumulated.



These three adorn my office wall:

Oscar on an outdoor portable climbing wall

Viv in a bear hat

Ada on a swing in a snowy park fourteen more… )
metawidget: me, Oscar, Elizabeth with Viv in front (family)
Here are some selected photos from 2015 so far — we get out, we weave stories, we make trouble and go to things.

Oscar and Vivien looking at each other with the piano and a grownup in the background.

The kids looking at each other... another photo post!

10 more… )
metawidget: me, Oscar, Elizabeth with Viv in front (family)
Here are some pictures from the last few months of 2014. We've been having lots of fun and occasionally remembering to take pictures. Next post, maybe some of them will have Elizabeth and/or me in the frame.

Oscar with a birthday cake standing in front of a Turkish grill with cousin Adam in the background

Oscar at his birthday barbecue (in low light, but you get the idea).

12 more… )
metawidget: A platypus looking pensive. (Default)
My last picture post featured kids with pumpkins. I still haven't figured out how to do them easily from a mobile device, so here's a big raft of pictures curated and posted at the big computer. Woodgie away! We start covered in snow.

Oscar and Vivien in the snow

Christmas photo candidate.

26 more! See Viv almost double in age! )
metawidget: A platypus looking pensive. (platypus)
Family photo

This weekend [livejournal.com profile] the_arachne got married to her fiancé (no username :) ), and they had a photographer taking shots of volunteers after dinner. It was a rare opportunity for a family portrait!

It's been kind of insanely busy lately — Elizabeth's album finished, the launch shows performed, the wedding of last weekend (at which Oscar and Elizabeth both got named parts, and I wrecked my pants, first stooping for Vivien and then dancing), a promotion process at work (my interview shirt = my wedding shirt), and a research project that can be describes mostly positively as tilting at windmills, and fun to work on but challenging. I also assembled a team and applied for some research days at work, which would be a cool opportunity to manage something and fix a problem I find cool. Now I still have things to do, but applications are with committees, most of the album-related stuff is done, and Elizabeth and I are casting about for bits of relaxing time for us to celebrate and recuperate.
metawidget: Oscar and Vivien on a couch (Oscar 2.25 years, Vivien 4 mos) (oscar and vivien)
I was looking back at my recent entries to see what photos I posted last of the kids; Vivien looks so young in her most recent one — from May! Three months later, she's sleeker, more mobile, more defined and more expressive. She's tentatively free-standing, waving at people, laughing at people having fun and working on tooth #9 (about the same pace as Oscar; I hope she's a little kinder to her teeth than he was at one). She'll be one year old next week (already!). Here are some pictures of the family since that last one.

Vivien can balance on things and Oscar can happily cope with her in his personal space (if he's having fun):

Oscar and Vivien on our rocking horse, with Elizabeth looking on.

Three more )

I'm on vacation starting today for a week and a half; we have lots planned: camping, helping friends, seeing people, taking care of kids, vaccinations for Vivien, and if all goes well some relaxation, re-connecting and recharging. I feel like I left work in pretty good shape; they'll survive without me but likely appreciate the things I got done. Life is exhausting and kind of exciting these days, even if it's objectively full of mundane.
metawidget: Oscar and Vivien on a couch (Oscar 2.25 years, Vivien 4 mos) (kids)

Vivien in May Queen paper crown
Vivien came with all of us to the Beltaine/May Day ritual at Judith's, wearing this paper May Queenish crown. We put it in with the offering bowl.

more Vivien ) work )
metawidget: close-up of freewheel of a bicycle (bicycle)
Today, I took the kids into the Glebe and back (14 km round trip) in the new bike trailer:

Vivien and Oscar asleep in the bike trailer

Neither of them really likes getting a helmet put on, Oscar's seatmate manners are still a work in progress (trailering, with faster-moving scenery, they're a little better than strollering) and Oscar was loudly and urgently wondering for a while where Mama was on the way home (she was riding behind us). Despite all that, they were both asleep when we pulled into home. It was Elizabeth's first bike ride out of the season — she went out ahead in the morning to record some additional vocals for her album, and I came later with the kids to add my screaming to one track, get Vivien a snack (soda crackers were only so satisfying during recording), say hi to Sarah at Nicastro's and have tasty sandwiches for lunch at the Wild Oat before heading home together. It was my and Oscar's first ride out post-tune-up (yay, chain grease) and Vivien's first bike trailer ride ever! I was quite happy with how the new trailer handled with two kids and gear in it.
metawidget: Our very fresh baby, backlit in blue with funky goggles, looking spiffy but a little like an alien invader (Vivien raygun)
Mostly because [personal profile] commodorified demands it, here is a picture of Vivien this afternoon, taken while Oscar was napping:

Vivien on a pillow, smiling

Life is pretty good of late: my leg and cold are mostly better, I still have just under two weeks of leave until I'm back at work (I'm enjoying the leave but looking forward to work, too), it finally feels like spring here (I got to wear short sleeves outside yesterday!) and I'm feeling pretty good about it all.
metawidget: Oscar and Vivien on a couch (Oscar 2.25 years, Vivien 4 mos) (oscar and vivien)

Yesterday, we got the kids outside in and on things with wheels:

Vivien in a wagon
Vivien has sitting more or less down.

two more )

Oscar continues to be kind of mama-centric, wanting Elizabeth specifically to do all sorts of things, from cutting banana bread to taking him to the bathroom. It's kind of a drag to be told "papa go away" a lot, but I hope it's just a phase as opposed to a parenting style thing — I do feel like I'm a little quicker to intervene when he's up to something iffy and a little more skeptical of his rapid-fire requests than Elizabeth is. Maybe my going back to daytime outside-the-house work will change the dynamics a bit. Oscar is also talking up a storm in more complete sentences when he feels like it — more people have names, and the flip-side of the specific requests is that he's using names as subjects more often in speech — things like "Mama carry Oscar" and "Vivien eat that" in addition to "Papa go away". He's also much more skilled at climbing playground equipment than in the fall, even though he had some time off (although we didn't wait for the snow to melt to set him upon the equipment this spring). He's skipping rungs successfully because he's in a hurry on things he couldn't quite hack in the fall.

Vivien is eating all kinds of things and working on a fourth tooth. She can also play while sitting and eat while sitting in the high chair (which has made the high chair cool again for Oscar). She's growing out of many of her hats and six-month clothes, and frequently babbling contentedly. Our days of being able to play a board game with a placid infant are going away again, though: all the bits are very fascinating. If we're lucky, she'll be a bit more amenable to a bedtime before ours sometime soon.

We've bought some seeds and are starting tomatoes inside. If we're lucky, we'll have zucchini, acorn squash, pumpkins, a few sorts of tomatoes, kale, mixed carrots, strawberries, pears, peas and chives. We'll probably manage a subset of that, but we can hope (and trust Gord and his CSA to give us lots of veggies, too). The crocuses are up again in the lawn, and I scattered some globe thistle seeds out front for colour and spikiness. I hope it's a good year for green-thumbiness!

metawidget: Person sitting cross-legged from the rear, in black and white with noise and scratches (body)
I've been recovering slowly from what seems to be a slightly wonked sciatic nerve — my back and left leg have been feeling assorted unpleasant feelings for a while. I'm tapering off the naproxen and relying lots more on just walking it off or switching activities. The hurt seems to be almost draining out of the leg, from the whole length at first down to mid-calf and below now. I'm looking forward to being completely back to normal soon and for me to be able to tell if the floor is cold again (for now, I get a cold sole feeling unrelated to floor temperature from standing sometimes) Bodies work differently as you get older!

I really hope that my stash of naproxen can expire, given that I've only found it necessary for shoulder wonk and now sciatic wonk.

Oscar has been in heavy mama-centric mode lately. Usually, I put him to bed, but the last few nights (except last night, where I was drawing through bedtime), I've given up and passed the torch after getting my hair pulled and knees in bad spots with no visible sleep progress. Elizabeth usually goes in and emerges ten minutes later with Oscar asleep. It was a little comforting to find out last night that his road to sleep was long, so even if it doesn't feel like progress, my starting off bedtime may be doing some good in helping him spin down a bit.

I helped Elizabeth trim the sides of her head today into an undercut. No pictures yet, but now I can meet my fuzzy and fluffy hair-scritching needs in one place.

On Monday, we appeared in our first family photo in a while, courtesy of [personal profile] commodorified. I look stronger than I actually needed to be!
metawidget: Sticker saying "you are beautiful" on a black background. (beautiful)
Six months ago today, Vivien was born. Now she has two teeth, is starting to be mobile, and is sticking lots of things in her mouth (but not eating complementary foods just yet).

then )
now )

Six years ago today, I proposed, in a horse shelter at my parents' place, to Elizabeth. She said yes.

Also, happy birthday to my cousin Erica, [personal profile] beable and to [livejournal.com profile] thebabynancy!
metawidget: Oscar and Vivien on a couch (Oscar 2.25 years, Vivien 4 mos) (oscar and vivien)
We sent out a picture of the kids with our Christmas cards this year. We do things DIY around here, despite the recommendation of one of my friends who wrangles a family of five into a photo with the help of a trusted Superstore photographer every year with good results. It probably took us a little longer (and two sessions, one of which is lost to the vagaries of a borked camera card), but we got one that definitely captures where the kids were at in late November. Here it is:

Oscar smiling, Vivien looking perturbed

The first thing not visible there is Elizabeth under the blanket holding them relatively still.

The other things not visible are the blooper shots, of which here are two:
cut in case you prefer to leave your illusions intact )
Here are a couple more cute shots of Vivien from around Christmas:
you know you want to reveal these )
I have another picture post from a few drawing workshops in the works, but it does take a while to crank them out these days.
metawidget: Oscar in a diaper, crouching as if to fit into the frame and looking quizzical (oscar ducking into frame)

A week ago, we went up to my parents' place for my brother's birthday and to visit. Here are a few pictures featuring Oscar, my dad, and some dogs from that weekend:

Oscar and a big shaggy dog in the garden
three more )

After long months of teethiness with no teeth, Elizabeth has at last felt and spotted molars coming in for Oscar. He's also extra-teethy, but now there is a light (and an almost-full set of teeth) at the end of the tunnel. Vivien has little incisor tips poking through, so we won't lack for teething kids for some time, of course. I guess we have early-teeth genes.

I had a revelation in Oscar psychology a few days back — when Vivien starts flailing her arms and legs, Oscar sometimes runs in, says "no!" and holds down her limbs. We had no idea why he didn't feel she had a right to move her arms and legs for some time, but then I realized that when Oscar is kicking me while I'm trying to get him to bed, I will respond by saying "no kicking!" and holding his legs to stop him from kicking for a few seconds. Unintended consequences and kids having reasonable logic to their actions strike again.

Vivien looks like she'll have rolling figured out soon. No more always finding here where we put her down; we'll have to be choosier about her resting spots! Also, she's smilier almost every day, it feels like.

We're getting close to hiring someone to put in a nice, solid, hard-to-climb privacy fence to replace the rickety chain-link one we have. Maybe it'll even be done by the end of the year!

metawidget: Oscar in a bucket, smiling (oscar in bucket)

I've been having a pretty good October up to now, seeing people, doing union stuff, taking care of the kids and joining my family for Thanksgiving weekend. Here are a bunch of pictures that mostly show off our photogenic kids.

a close-up of baby Vivien

Vivien from earlier this month: filling out!

a bunch more pictures )
metawidget: Our very fresh baby, backlit in blue with funky goggles, looking spiffy but a little like an alien invader (Vivien raygun)

On Oscar's actual birthday, my parents, my sister and her partner came up to help celebrate and see the bigger, more interacitve Vivien. Here are a couple of pictures of her:

potty-related stuff might need a cut )

When it's not raining, we've been getting in a bunch of walking lately — we being the kids and me when Elizabeth needed time to practice for her Can-Con show, or all four of us when we're going somewhere or just need to get out of the house. I really enjoy family walking — when I'm the lone adult, we interact a lot with the neighbours and random shoppers, and when it's Elizabeth and I and optionally the (often sleepy or distracted) kids, we often have nice, relaxed conversations or don't say much but it feels like more pleasant transit time than just about any other means of getting around. Working a walk into something otherwise stressful can make the difference in keeping my chin up, and the fall weather is the best walking weather of the year as far as I'm concerned.

metawidget: Co-sleeping kid taking up as much space as possible between co-awake parents. (co-sleep)

Vivien is a little over four weeks old now. She's filling out, both visually and weight-wise (almost three kilograms now), and keen to look around and see the world. We've been out and about with her on foot in buses and in cars; she can be a bit fussy at the beginning and end of the trip but she travels pretty well in general. I've been out alone with the two of them successfully, walking and bussing: Elizabeth can practice better for her upcoming gig in an empty house, Vivien mostly naps and Oscar enjoys the moving scenery and interacting with the neighbours. A dad during the day with two under-twos gets a lot of positive attention, too, which is nice :)

Oscar seems a bit fragile and jealous sometimes; he's very keen to claim Vivien-associated things and people: Elizabeth (including breastfeeding), the diaper cream (!), our attention generally (when she fusses, he often fusses). He does also still seem excited and want to help and hold her (he also wants to hold the cat, we have to supervise and intervene in both cases). He's picked up jumping-on-the-bed skills, and his vocabulary is expanding — he picked up “rainbow” just in time for Pride (he had a blast at the parade: lights, music, candy, people smiling at him — he was dancing on my shoulders for the whole thing, more or less), too many food terms to count, “happy” and ”eat” for his internal state. His first (and so far, only) three-word sentence is “I like it!”. He's on track to be my height if the double-your-height-at-two rule is to believed; I looked up his height and weight on the WHO curves and he remains ninety-something on height and median on weight, just like when he was born. I hope he enjoys turning two!

Here are some pictures from the beginning of last month of the two of them, including a cute size comparison:

some pictures from the early days )
metawidget: Oscar in a diaper, crouching as if to fit into the frame and looking quizzical (oscar ducking into frame)

We've been running around madly lately — two of my cousins have July weddings; we went up to the Kitchener-Waterloo area for one last week, and we'll be heading back to Montréal for another next weekend. Oscar is a hit with just about everyone; we met his slightly-older second cousin Owen up at the wedding. My dad observed that they're in very different places in terms of sharing: the world is still Oscar's oyster (and anything he can get his hands on is sort of his), but Owen is both working on sharing and developing a sense of justice. The clash of worldviews took some parental finesse here and there to restore good cheer and make sure everyone had something they liked to play with.

Here are a couple of photos:

from the wedding and train )

Earlier in the month, we went up for a day and a night to [personal profile] dagibbs' family's cottage. Oscar liked running around the grounds, and he got to ride with [personal profile] commodorified on the paddle board and share a hammock with her (photo: [personal profile] fairestcat).

Back at home, we hired one of my friends from back in high school to install and wire up a bathroom fan and update our somewhat vintage outlets and switches. It's going to take a little while to get used to the fact that all the switches are right-side-up and take less effort to throw than before, but I'm sure I'll get used to it. He also moved the 220V outlet down a bit so that our stove isn't perched on bricks anymore. It's only been four years that we've been living with the quirks and bugs in this house; it feels good to get a bunch of them fixed. Next things on our house list: some scraping/patching/paint, a new electrical panel, and a fence upgrade. Not all of these things are likely to get done before #2 is born, but we might get a couple of them done!

Speaking of #2, next month is August! Due date! Crazy homebirth adventure (if all goes well and on time)! That went very fast.

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metawidget: A platypus looking pensive. (Default)
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