Swimming lessons have become a regular Saturday event and, usually, Kei takes Thomas while I look after Samuel (which means I put him down for his nap and enjoy a little Nicole time :)).

Last Saturday Kei took on the painful task of gathering tax papers for the accountant so I was on swimming lesson duty. I definitely got the better end of the deal.

It was the first time I’ve witnessed Thomas in a swimming lesson. He definitely needs to work on his kicking, but he enjoys “running” through the water and does a good job listening to the teacher. He’s also learned to blow bubbles in the bath in preparation but is yet to transfer that to the pool. Frankly I don’t blame him. Blowing bubbles in pool water is a little gross.


I didn’t know it at the time, but my poor baby had a double ear infection and was in a lot of pain.

No, at the time I was thinking only about how whiny and needy he was being and how I just wanted to be able to put him down for a minute. Little did I know that it was about to get much worse before it got better. That night Kei and I took turns sitting up with Samuel – the only way he was comfortable.

Thankfully we had his nine month appointment the following day and were able to get some antibiotics. It took another couple of days before we got our baby back and, now that he’s back to normal, I realize just how miserable he was.


There is nothing cuter than a baby who loves to dance. We enjoyed it so much with Thomas and now I am excited to share that Samuel also loves to groove. We don’t often have music playing in our house – well not recorded music. In fact we don’t even have a CD player. We use the DVD player/TV and occasionally Kei’s ipod with some tiny computer speakers.

What we do have is a daddy who enjoys playing the guitar, a mummy who likes to sing her boys to sleep and a leap frog music toy that is now enjoying a revival. Seriously one of the best toys we ever bought.

Creative Ventures

I have been feeling very creative lately when it comes to scrapping. I seriously think it’s all about Jen Wilson’s challenges. They just inspire me to write my feelings down on paper, even though I’ve been more focused on photography more than ever.

And speaking of photography – did I mention I have my first paid photo gig this coming Saturday? Eeeck! I’m taking photos of my friend’s family but I am still incredibly nervous. I just hope the Portland weather is kind to me. Of course I will give her a full refund if it doesn’t work out, but I’m really hoping I get at least 20 good photos. She has two adorable children – they’re nearly the same age as my kids, both boys and part Asian. I really couldn’t ask for a more comfortable setting for my first shoot but the paid part of it adds some pressure.

Back to the scrapping. Here are some of my latest pages. Click on images for a closer view and credits.

This is my absolute favourite.

And a girly one for fun


our family activity for the weekend was a little indoor rock climbing at Thomas’ request. Seriously – he had been asking for two days. So we packed everyone in the car and headed to the local indoor rock climbing gym.

I would love to say that Thomas ran over to the wall and climbed to the top and that the $10 we paid for him to get in was entirely worth it. Apparently the anticipation of rock climbing is much greater than the event itself. It took at least an hour and much coaxing by Mummy and Daddy before Thomas finally made it to the top of the kid’s wall. It was an exciting moment when he finally made it but I doubt we’ll have another rock climbing session in the near future.

And is it just me, or is Thomas looking older and older these days – even from behind when climbing a rock wall?


I am torn. I don’t know whether to be appalled that Thomas is so influenced by TV characters or grateful. The latest example is his sudden desire to wear jeans. Thomas has many pairs of jeans in his dresser, most of which are unworn. These are cute jeans. Gymboree Jeans. But the problem until recently is that Jeans do not fall under the category of “Soft Pants”.

Soft pants is code for anything in the sweat pant family. Not all sweat pants mind you, only those that are genuinely soft. Soft on the inside? No good. They have to be soft on the inside AND outside. This has not been a problem as far as daycare is concerned – sweat pants are perfect for daycare – but we go to a party or somewhere nice and the battle over attire becomes a problem. (One small success was the “party pants” trick. “You have to wear your party pants!” said with enthusiasm worked for about four birthday parties last summer).

So why the sudden change? A newly rediscovered love of Blues Clues. Yes, Steve wears jeans so suddenly it’s OK to wear jeans and I am ecstatic. I was beginning to hope that Samuel would be obsessed with wearing jeans just so they would have some use in the distant future. But no, Steve saved the jeans and suddenly it seems as though we may be able to put together a party outfit without a tantrum.

Oh one more thing… Steve wears striped shirts. Anyone know where I can purchase a large supply of cute striped shirts?


One thing I want to know… Why does Kei have my Dad as a friend when I didn’t know he was even on Facebook?

In other news, Samuel came down with his first ear infection this week – a double ear infection. I’ve been home with him since Monday and have spent the past few nights sitting up with him at various times trying to ease the pain. We started him on antibiotics yesterday and they seem to have kicked in tonight. My poor baby is finally sleeping soundly.

It’s been a tough week in the Ishida house.