Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Have I mentioned how much I love Emiko?

The Quest for Quiet

Anyone who has tried to sit through an hour of church with a toddler understands--engaging activities are a must. Once again my friend Stephanie rose to the challenge and helped me create a "Quiet Book"--one for me, and one each for both of my sisters (and their kids).

I presented them in person when in Arizona and my sister Monique nicely took some pictures of her book.

Left-hand side is "The Garden of Eden." The 'leaves' have velcro on the back and attach/detach to/from the tree (and can be stored in the pocket below, disguised as a bush). The 'petals' can be taken off the flower-shaped buttons. The right-hand side is the 'Family' page. The pocket labeled 'family' has many photographs of the extended family.

The left-hand size is 'Noah's Ark,' with foam animals attached to blue ribbons that can be placed in the pocket (disguised as the body of the boat). The right-hand side is 'Jonah' and, as you can see, there is a little Jonah that goes inside the whale (and the mouth zips shut).

On the left is the right inside of the cover. I attached a little pocket I removed from an old jumpsuit of Mayumi's (this pocket features a little turtle, Monique and Leah's favorite animal). The right-hand side is 'Joseph and the coat of many colors.' The coat opens up and ties shut.

The left-hand side is the 'Tithing' page. I should mention that pattern for many of the shapes/images in the book were drawn by Nate. The piggy bank is one of those images. The left-hand side is the inside of the cover. I attached the buckles of the old jumpsuit for just one more little activity.

This photo did not load properly. Sigh. Well, the left-hand side are a bunch of funky belts with fun buckles. Simply an 'activity page.' The right-hand size is the 'Helping Hands' page; there's a beaded bracelet around the wrist of the hand, and three images--a bar of soap with suds (I attached pink and white beads for texture), a bed with a 'blanket' that can be removed and attached via velcro, and building blocks (from which letters that spell the name/s of the kids in that family attached to ribbons hang). It is really too complicated to explain clearly--unfortunately this picture just didn't work out.

Thank you to Stephanie for designing the book and guiding me along each step! Thank you to my mother for helping fund the books. Thank you to Nate to gave endless validation and moral support!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Arizona Cuties

My sister Lindsay and her photographic/photoshop skills get the credit for the following pictures. See her blog (link to the right) for photos of ALL the cousins (I didn't want to totally steal her blog post so am only posting the ones of my girls).

In front of the Phoeniz Zoo--all the cousins and the grandparents. Check out Emiko in her 'sausage suit.' We bundle her up like that when it is time for her to nap.

I guess love of furry creatures is generally universally among small children. Yumi, and her cousins Lily and Allie, brushing a goat at the petting zoo.

We like to call Emiko 'Emi the Good' because she is, well, so GOOD.

Yumi REALLY liked this frog.

We visited the pool many times during our visit to Arizona (imagine--a pool open in April!!).

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Sweet Home Arizona

My younger sister Lindsay moved to Arizona a year and a half ago, and has generously hosted all of our family members multiple times. As we did last year at this same time, we gathered at her home over Easter weekend and let the little girl cousins go wild. Nate had my camera (he has been abroad) so I took the video camera and took many little clips of the Cutes. I do not yet have the loads of pictures everyone else in my family took, so I'll provide those, and a few more video clips (including the easter egg hunt), in a future post.

Here is Mayumi with her cousin, of almost identical age, Lily. Lily is a sweet tempered little darling.

Emi was a HUGE hit. I personally have never met a better-tempered, easier baby, and I think everyone in my family agrees with me on this point. Lindsay's girls Allie and Lily sure did love her.

Lindsay graciously took us to the Phoeniz Zoo, which ROCKS. Here, Yumi saw giraffes (her favorite) for the very first time. That clip is, unfortunately, too long to load. Sad. This clip features us all in the Monkey Village. You can hear Mayumi saying her word for monkey ('eee eee ooo ooo ah ah ah') and 'Baby Noah' (from the Baby Einstein series--her word for animals).