Monday, December 15, 2008

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to everyone...

...We are having a blast in India. Aiden is a very good traveller and is making lot of new friends. We will be back in Jan with lots of pictures and stories. Cheers.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Shout out

Aiden has started that really adorable phase where he wants to wear our clothes (in his case, shoes, hats and barrettes).  He found a pair of my shoes that he liked and practised wearing them until he could walk.  Then he walked from one bedroom all the way to the other so he could look at himself  in the mirror wearing Mama's shoes.  

At the risk of offending anyone, I'm going to take a moment to be controversial.  I really wanted to call this post "Aiden's shout out against Prop 8". But, it's really my shout out.  I've hesitated a long time about this because I know Prop 8 is a sensitive topic  for many, especially in my own family.   Still I feel too strongly about this to keep quiet.  Everyone should have the right to love and where love exists it should be supported.  That we have legislated against it makes me sad.  There was a time when it was illegal for people of different races to marry each other.  When you see the beauty that is Aiden, it seems pure craziness that anyone would be threatened enough by his existence that they would want to deny him the right of growing up in the security of a legally recognized family.  I hope one day we'll look back on Prop 8 and be able to say the same thing.   So many arguments for Prop 8 presented it as protecting our children when it does the opposite.  Like it or not gay people have children too and those children are as deserving of family as the rest of us.  

 One really amazing thing about having a baby is that you see the world through fresh eyes.  When it comes to cultural norms, babies don't know anything about "should" they just accept everything the way it is and everyone the way they are.  Maybe that's why we love them so much.  People are either friendly and helpful or they are not.  Coolness doesn't even register.  Neither does moral or right.  Kindness is key and really all you need to know about a person.  I feel that as a state, we've lost sight of this.  It can be so easy to loose the child's gift of total acceptance.  My hope for Aiden is that he never does.  

In the spirit of total love and acceptance, here's my shout out against Prop 8.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Helping out at home

Aiden seems to have realized that raising a baby is a lot of work and that Mom & Dad (well mostly Mom) need all the help that they can get. He's decided to pull his own weight and help around the house. (We won't talk about all the work that he puts in to make sure that the house is an absolute mess to start with.) He likes attending to all the household chores like sweeping, scrubbing, cleaning, weeding, sweeping etc. But his two most favorite chores are vacuuming the house and watering the yard.
Whenever we bring out the vacuum he immediately takes over the job and before we know it the house looks spic and span. Unfortunately he has not yet grasped the concept of the fact that there is a finite amount of charge on the vacuum at any given time. Whenever the vacuum runs out of power he raises absolute hell. He thinks we are up to some mischief to prevent him from helping and we have to explain to him that it needs to be plugged in downstairs. Lately he's even started demanding for the vacuum by taking Mommy downstairs and imitating the sound that the vacuum makes.

As soon as he wakes up in the morning, he does the water sign. At first we though that meant he was thirsty but soon came to realize that it meant we have been ignoring watering the plants and that it was time for him to take ownership of that all important task. He can spend hours doing nothing but flooding the entire sidewalk. He doesn't quite appreciate it when we tell him that there is a drought going on in California which means we have to save water. He even has his favorite yard shoes. Mommy recently bought him these cute Crocs with the theme from the movie 'Cars'. Whenever it's time to go out and we tell him that it's time to put on shoes he makes a car sound and asks for his favorite shoes. This is the first and so far only preference that he has shown towards any sort of clothing. Could it be a harbinger of things to come ?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

1st work of art

Can you tell we're behind on posting?

This post is the cyber equivalent of refrigerator art. Aiden made his first work of art on election day using paper forced on us by the people at the polling station. It is a careful examination of the confusion facing the undecided voter: do I want change or do I think everything is just jiffy the way it is?


Time is slipping by and I never posted Halloween pictures.  

Aiden was a giraffe this year.  While he's obsessed with hats, he doesn't like wearing them.  He likes it when other people wear them.  So, I didn't have high hopes for his Halloween costume which had a hood.  We bought it early and put the costume in his toy box.  The first time he wore it, I got out every book I could find with a picture of a giraffe.  I put the costume on him and took him to the mirror and excitedly compared him to the pictures.  I wasn't sure he got it but he was happy to wear the costume and even asked us to put the hood on every once in a while.  That night, Quita (grandma) came by to babysit and he actually showed her the pictures of giraffes and wouldn't let her turn the page.  Then he pointed to his costume.  It was one of those "Ah-ha!" moments.  He gets it, he gets it!

Since then the costume is a favorite.  He brings it to me when he wants to put it on and is so excited to wear it.  

A stroll to the park

One of the advantages of living in our neighborhood is that it's walking distance to the children's park. Aiden absolutely loves the walk to the park, but he loves it even more since he got his new wheels. He just lays in his big red all terrain wagon like a king while his subjects (Dad or Mom) pull him along. Along the way he commands us to make a mandatory stop at a party store to pick up a balloon to be attached to the wagon to let the masses know that the king is on his evening stroll. He loves watching all the hustle and bustle on the street and gets very excited when any sort of vehicle passes by. His favorites are the big Harleys that gather at the local biker bar. He does this really cute sign where he pretends to ride the bike and even tries to imitate the Harley growl. We pass quite a few dogs along the way and he's the first one to notice them. Once at the park he loves to ride on the swing or play in the sand pit but absolute favorite is this pink dinosaur. He lets out a big dinosaur roar even before we actually get to the park as soon as he gets a visual.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Aiden's Lexicon

"Dada" - Dada or Mama

"ffff" - Ceiling fan

"nana" - Banana or Granny

"up" - Pick me up, put me down, I wanna go out

"hat" - hat

"hot" - hot or cooking, hot mama

"seetch" - switch (sides nursing), I wanna nurse

"boo" - ghost lights for Halloween

"uggah ick" - Uncle Rick

"Chichi" - Aunty Chichi

"Am" - Aunty Pam

"gok" - go

"raaaarh" (growl) - bear or dinosaur

"om" - home

"shuz" - shoes or socks

"fuf" - flower

"bup" - balloon

"gee" - gidy-up, let's play horsey

"keek" - kick

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Aiden's Election Day Happy Dance

Aiden voted today and is thrilled with the results of the election....When he saw the crowd go wild he started clapping along with them.  He's enthusiasm died down a little when we got out the camera but you get the idea.  

Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Very Best Part of my Day

The very best part of my day is right before Aiden goes to bed.  Lac comes home in the evening and takes Aiden for his bath and bed time routine.   The whole thing takes 30 minutes.  After he's been bathed and dressed, my little boy comes running out to see me as if he hasn't seen me in forEVER.  It's so cute and makes my heart melt every time.  Even cuter is his new winter look...Dada pulls his socks up to his knees.  The thing that breaks my heart is every once in a while, when I'm not home, Aiden comes running out and is so perplexed when he doesn't see me.  Actually I've been told he gets a WTF look on his face.  This happened the other day even though he walked me out to the car and saw me drive away.  So sweet.....

Pumpkin Patch

Aiden loved his first trip to a mega pumpkin patch, well any pumpkin patch.  It was another story for Mama who found the whole thing really stressful:  lots of people, really long lines, and hardly any decent food.   Note to self, try the neighborhood patch next time and study up on being zen before the Disneyland trip.  

Aiden's obsession with bikes comes in handy while Mama and Dada take turns waiting in line for the graveyard train trip for 1.5 hours.  No joke.  

Monday, October 27, 2008

Breaking news !!! Postman revealed!

I am coming out of my self imposed blog posting exile to deliver some late breaking news. The identity of the most sought after postman has been finally revealed. No more investigative work required. The confirmation has come straight from the horse's mouth (or should we say Colt). I knew it had to be someone in our inner circle.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Aiden and Dada

This picture from a trip to the California Academy of Sciences didn't turn out but I love it anyway.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

The Uncle Lloyd Post

Aunties and Uncles: Laughing

Sadly it seems that Chocolate-Daddy has taken a temporary Chocilla hiatus.  Feel free to let him know how much you miss him!

In the mean time I want to share more about our exciting summer.  Two of Aiden's Aunties visited us from overseas:  Auntie Pam from India and Auntie ChiChi (and Uncle Adam) from New Zealand.  Even better, they over-lapped  for a couple of days.  Aiden was very fond of both his aunties and we have some great pictures of our time together which I hope to share in future posts.  

This video shows Aiden trying to imitate Auntie Chichi's wild laughter.  The first couple of tries knock him over.  Later he gets the hang of it and actually braces himself by hunching down.

Saturday, October 11, 2008


This video was taken a month ago at the SF Lindy Exchange.  It's Aiden's first time dancing.  Now he loves to dance every time he hears music.  

You'll see him falling a lot which is a sure sign he should be sleeping.  By the time we got to the dancing, he'd already had a full day.  First we met Quita, Uncles Rick and Jonathan and Aunties Elena and Helena at the Farmers' Market in the SF Ferry Building.  There Aiden sampled all the fruit he and his Dada could get by flirting with the ladies giving out samples.  He also had a workout pushing a cooler (twice his size) here and there, including under a truck.  

The plan was for him to nap on the way to the market and he did, sort of, but only for 20 minutes - hardly enough to keep him going the rest of the day.  He's tired and cranky but in classic Aiden style, he's still able to find a moment for fun.  

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Beach

It's hard to believe that it took us this long to take Aiden to the beach.  He loved it!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A Toddler's Perfect Day

I don't think toddler Aiden has ever had a truly perfect day but if he did, this is what it would look like.....

Aiden would wake up and immediately nurse and eat something with mangoes for breakfast.  Mama would pass him spoons, forks, spatulas and sharp knives for him to play with while he ate.  After breakfast, Mama would carry him to each and every light switch in the house and hold him while he turned it on and off many, many times before moving on to the next one.  Then, he would do a tour of the house.  Mama would hold Aiden while he pointed at a shelf and cried out "Eh!", she'd follow his directions and let him pick whatever high up things he wanted to play with....especially the pens and scissors.  

Then he'd head outside.  Aiden loves to water the yard and signs "water" each and every time we leave the house, every time we arrive home from somewhere, and every time he looks out a window and sees anything remotely green.  He hasn't learned the sign for drought yet.  Anyway, back to his day....he'd spend a significant amount of it watering the yard and playing with the hose.  Ideally he'd be naked.  Then, off to the park where Mama or Dada would push him on the swing for a very, very long time.  None of the other kids would protest when he stole their sand toys, in fact they'd jump at the chance to watch him play with their toys.  Every park would would have a water feature and large friendly dogs.  Motorcycles, buses, trucks and trains would occasionally drive by so he could admire them.  

Once home, Aiden would rummage though the diaper bin and kitchen trash.....after having watered the front yard again.  He'd open and close all the Tupperware and make a collage with it covering the house.  Then he'd walk around with Mama's grocery bags collecting random things to carry.  Many of those things will never be seen again.  His Dada would give him a two hour bath and he would cuddle up with both Mama and Dada playing horsey and giving Eskimo kisses until he fell asleep.  

I'm sure I don't need to mention that he wouldn't have any teething pains the entire day.    

Here's some pictures of Aiden doing some of his favorite things.....

Pushing, pulling and dragging things around.  Bonus points if dragged item has some sort of bucket feature.  

Watering the front yard

Stealing another kid's toy.  He played with this walker for a good 40 minutes even though there were swings near by!?!?!
Hey Mom, wanna go water?

Thursday, September 25, 2008


Aiden with his Dada!

Aiden is taking his first baby steps with talking.  He can kinda say "this", "that", bubbles ("bub"), the "fffff" sound for fan and an unmistakable "Dada".  As it turns out, Dada is a multi-purpose word and is used liberally to refer to both his dada and his mama.  While he's only tried to say Mama one time, he makes a valiant attempt at "Angela" every night at the encouragement of his official Dada.  It sounds like "ya-ya-ya".  This might be Aiden's first joke.  He knows it's funny and that he should be calling me mama.  The more I hear it, the more I like being called Dada.  It's beyond cute and truly an amazing feeling to hear my little one call me. 

Thursday, September 4, 2008


The smile says it all.  Aiden has graduated from tooth to teeth.  Actually, he's had *teeth* for two weeks but whose counting.  He's figured out they are used for something which is pretty cute.  

This photograph, while adorable, is unfortunately not rare these days.  Every day, usually at least twice a day, Aiden looks like this.  Meal time is perhaps my greatest challenge as a mama lately.  Aiden's hair is very, very hungry and he tries to feed it regularly.  I've also started feeding without clothes because he wont wear a bib and ruined so many of this 9-12 month onsies.  Now I know better.

After his meal, I pick him up, march him to the bathroom and give him a quick sink bath.  He tries to grab me because he likes to share, I try and keep him angled away because I like my food on my plate.....Sigh....

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Little Man

Aiden is so good at walking these days that its rare to see him crawl.  He proudly paces up and down, up and down.  At Barbara and Alvin's baby shower, I followed him around thinking he'd eventually tire out.  It never happened and I finally pulled up a chair in the middle of the room and watched him from there.

In these pictures, he looks like a little boy and not a baby.  It happened so fast, I'm still not sure where my baby went.

Heat Wave!

Today was hot!

Trying to cool down with Auntie Pamela.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Aunties and Uncles: Multi-part series

Aiden is blessed with no less than 6.5 aunties and 5 uncles.  Sadly most of them live far away.  This summer we have been lucky enough to have a steady stream of uncles and aunties come to the bay area for a visit.  We're have great pictures of Aiden getting to know his family but are so behind on sharing them that this post is only the beginning of the uncle and auntie series.  

It all started with Uncle Rick who visited from Philly in June.  Uncle Jonathan and almost-auntie Ashley from So-Cal where there too.  They were so taken by Aiden that they decided to move north....Ummmm, so it didn't quite happen like that but Jonathan and Ashley ARE temporarily living just a bridge away in Marin.  We encourage the other uncles and aunties to do the same though they probably shouldn't all move in with Grandpa.

Diaper changes are way more fun with personal baby entertainers.

Hanging out with Grandpa by the pool.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Aiden and Hope Swing Together

Another night of insomnia leaves me looking at pictures of beautiful Baba because I just don't get to spend enough time with him during the day (hysterical stay-at-home mom joke which you might not get if you aren't one).  I love this picture from a month or two ago and never posted it.  Their heads look so big on those little bodies...and they are so excited to be swinging.  These days, there are few things Aiden loves more.  

Sunday, August 17, 2008


Play group friend Lauren took this photograph of Aiden today.  Aside from being very cute, the neatest thing about this picture is its name...AidenTooth.JPEG.   I do believe this is the first picture we have of Aiden's tooth which arrived a little over a week ago.  Thanks Lauren!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Happy Birthday Aiden!

Remember when Aiden was just a few hours old...

This is Aiden ONE YEAR (!!!!) and a few hours old!

It boggles my mind to think that its been a year since he was born and forever changed our lives. A whole year! Those of you paying attention will realize that he actually turned a year a week and a half ago....a whole year! We had a picnic party to celebrate and many of his play group friends joined us for a sort of super play group in the park. Aiden had a great time and his first party was a smashing success....except for the part where a group of Iraqi women infiltrated our reserved site. Uncle Jonathan and Grandpa diplomatically worked things out but my karma probably took a hit when I arrived 5 minutes before the party started to see them still using the grill....but it was my baby's birthday and he was turning a whole year old!

Before I degenerate into are pics from Aiden's very first birthday...

This picture is of Quita holding Aiden while he wears a traditional Indian outfit sent by Granny all the way from Goa. Though he looks adorable in the kurtha, he was decidedly NOT fond of it which is why Aiden did not wear this outfit to his party....

Happy Birthday Aiden....we love you!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Signing Time

We've been trying to teach Aiden a few basic signs for a while now (although not very religiously). We attended a baby sign language workshop a while ago that got us going. Aiden's favorite and so far only TV show (gasp!) is this show called 'Signing Time' that runs on a public broadcasting channel. Every time the host of the show, Rachel is on, Aiden drops everything that he's doing and starts blushing. There are lots of small kids on the show, but he seems to have this thing for older women. We are hoping that he grows of of it soon.

He's been recognizing basic signs for a while now, but it's only recently that he's started actually signing himself. The first sign that he learnt was 'More'. And then he added quite a few more like 'All done', 'Eat', 'Bye', 'Change diaper' etc. A sign that he learnt very early on was 'Airplane'. We live right next to the airport so that sign gets a lot of play. He even does it in the middle of the night when he's half asleep and trying to doze off. Nowadays he copies a lot of the signs that we do, and his latest favorite these days is 'Truck'. For some reason, he doesn't do the 'Milk' sign, but that could be because being a man, he prefers the more visual approach of showing his infatuation with breasts :)

Here he is doing 'More', All Done' & 'Airplane'.

Lately, a more common occurrence at the dinner table is the most adorable thing that I've seen him do. After he's had his fill, he gets really excited to feed 'Mommy'. As you can tell he has her eating out of his hands. Not that we needed a picture to prove that.