Category Archives: review

Weekly review: Week ending November 25, 2016

We had our family portrait in the same place we had a family portrait in 2013. This time, John V. was able to join us, so everyone was here. We also took advantage of everyone's presence to have a family meeting, since there are quite a few decisions to make and things to do. I've volunteered to take on some of the paperwork and maintenance, since it'll be easier for me than for my sisters. Time to learn about Philippine taxes! The UP Singing Ambassadors graced us with Christmas carols, love songs, and a few songs for the kids at the party in Adphoto. Some of my godparents and my barkada made it to the party, too, so I caught up with them there. A- slept through most of the party, and W- took care of her. Lots of cooking! My mom set me up with access to a local account, so we've been picking up groceries and making dinners. Best way to spend a vacation, I think. We've been doing a combination of our favourite meals and new recipes we want to explore. W- made couscous chicken and stuffed pork tenderloin, while I made a lasagna with bechamel sauce. Kathy normally cooks, so we're glad to let her and the family have a bit more breathing room. Home-cooked meals are the best for times like these. W- and I swapped our demonetized Philippine pesos for new currency, so that's sorted out. My mom's been helping me with the paperwork for getting government-issued IDs, too. Started working on Canada visa paperwork for my parents. There's an online process now, so that's more convenient than sending all the documents by mail. Yay! A- has gotten quite comfortable with my family. When she's in a good mood, she lets her Lolo or Tito John G. carry her, and she's waved and smiled at my mom too. She often pulls herself up to standing, although she's still quite wobbly, so we make sure to stay near. She also likes wiping the counter with a washcloth, which we enthusiastically encourage. She was a little jetlagged. In the beginning, she woke up at 4 AM or so. She seems to have adapted now, getting up at around 7:30 or 8. This is earlier than she used to wake up in Toronto, but she goes to bed earlier too, so it all works out. Life is good. 2016-12-01a-week-ending-2016-11-25-journal-weekly output Blog posts Sketches Focus areas and time review
  • Business (0.0h - 0%)
  • Relationships (12.4h - 7%)
  • Discretionary - Productive (0.7h - 0%)
    • Drawing (0.0h)
    • Emacs (0.4h)
    • Coding (0.0h)
      • ☑ Renew domains
    • Sewing (0.0h)
    • Writing (0.2h)
    • ☑ Exchange demonetized cash
    • ☑ Sort through clothes
    • ☑ Sort out bank accounts
  • Discretionary - Play (0.5h - 0%)
  • Personal routines (13.9h - 8%)
  • Unpaid work (81.9h - 48%)
    • Childcare (78.5h - 46% of total)
  • Sleep (58.6h - 34% - average of 8.4 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending November 18, 2016

The big thing this week was our flight to Manila. I had been worried about colds and pressure changes, but A- slept through her first take-off like a seasoned traveler. Baby food was a no go. Instead, she enjoyed tidbits from our bibimbap. Not much sleep in her bassinet either, except for maybe ten minutes after the bassinet was set up and before turbulence required us to take her out. Oh well. It was a good place for her to sit and play with cups, though. A- spent most of the flight with me, sometimes hanging out with W- while I napped. We figured out how to change diapers in the tiny airplane bathroom. The stopover in Seoul was a good opportunity to have more bibimbap and check out their breastfeeding facilities. A- wasn't able to sleep as well as she normally does, though. She was so tired that she was inconsolable during the second flight's take-off, only calming down once we could walk around. My parents picked us up from the airport and took us to Kathy's house, where we've been staying. G* and A* have been very excited to see A- and play with her. Since they're just 3 and 2 years old, they need a little supervision and guidance. You can practically see the activity in A-'s brain. There's plenty of floor space and interesting things to play with. She's a confident creeper now, quickly covering short distances on her hands and knees. She's even getting better at taking small toys along with her. She freely goes from lying down to sitting up, which makes diaper changes more of a challenge. She's starting to pull herself up to kneeling or standing with the help of furniture or nearby people's legs. She's been experimenting with different hand motions, too: patting Luke with the wooden turtle, waving at people, examining various things. I think she intentionally says "Baba" for W- now. She gradually adjusted her wake-up times to be more reasonable - no more 3:30 AM breakfasts. She has let Lolo and Lola hold her, and she has smiled and blown raspberries all around. It's so nice to spend time with family. All of us are here! 2016-11-20a-week-ending-2016-11-18-journal-weekly output Blog posts Sketches Focus areas and time review
  • Business (0.0h - 0%)
    • Earn (0.0h)
    • Build (0.0h)
    • Connect (0.0h)
  • Relationships (12.8h - 7%)
    • ☑ Confirm weight, height, meals
    • ☑ Check in
  • Discretionary - Productive (2.4h - 1%)
    • Drawing (0.8h)
    • Emacs (0.4h)
    • Coding (0.0h)
    • Sewing (0.5h)
    • Writing (0.8h)
  • Discretionary - Play (4.6h - 2%)
  • Personal routines (12.8h - 7%)
  • Unpaid work (96.6h - 57%)
    • Childcare (45.2h - 26% of total)
  • Sleep (38.7h - 23% - average of 5.5 per day) - thrown off by flight, no tracking

Weekly review: Week ending November 11, 2016

The switch back to Standard Time has so far been okay. It mostly means that we try to get our walks in earlier, and we have a bit more time in the late afternoon for night-type activities. It's been a tough week with lots of upset moments for A-. The chloral hydrate used for her ECG/EKG sedation took a while to kick in and she was already unhappy because of the pre-op exam, so that was about 45 minutes or so of full-scale crying. She bounced back all right, though. It got unexpectedly brisk on our walk with Joy and J- through High Park, and A- probably got a bit too cold. She was very upset on the way home. Still, we've managed to make it out to the Junction Family Resource Centre and other neighbourhood stops a few times. We went further afield to buy gifts for the trip, and we also took her to Sick Kids for her cardio exam. But we've also cut short a few walks and errands due to fussing. The week had its share of good moments, though. A- sequestered one of the gifts we were going to give her cousins, and is now the happy owner of her first Duplo set. She's also played around with wiping her place at the table with a washcloth, which we enthusiastically encourage - and then she promptly stuffs the cloth in her mouth, because we've been getting her used to the routine of using a clean washcloth to wipe her gums after meals. Ah, well. Oh, and there was an hour or so of the most adorable little snores one night. I tried sewing while A- was with me. A- was not particularly keen on the noise from the sewing machine, so all I could do was a quick little crinkle sheet from some scrap cloth and a potato chip bag. I have better luck cooking and baking in the morning, though, and have managed to try different recipes for pancakes and muffins over the past few days. Verdict: chocolate pancakes are too sweet, and banana walnut muffins are just right. The cardiologist said A-'s VSD is becoming increasingly restrictive, so less blood is flowing through the hole in her heart. Yay! They're going to keep an eye on the muscle bundles in her right ventricle, following up in three months or so. Not out of the woods yet, but it's good to have this kind of care. de Quervain's continues to be a bother, but A-'s worth it. So far, I've been able to modify what I do in order to avoid pain, so it's really more about paying extra attention. That's not a bad thing, anyway. Next week is going to be quite an adventure. Here goes! 2016-11-13a-week-ending-2016-11-11-journal-weekly output Blog posts Sketches Focus areas and time review
  • Business (1.8h - 1%)
    • Earn (0.8h - 44% of Business)
      • ☐ Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (0.0h - 0% of Business)
    • Connect (1.0h - 55% of Business)
  • Relationships (4.9h - 2%)
    • ☑ Fix up RESP
    • ☑ Update passport info
    • ☑ Start packing
  • Discretionary - Productive (5.8h - 3%)
    • Drawing (3.8h)
    • Emacs (1.7h)
      • ☑ Do another Emacs News review
      • ☐ Do another Emacs News review
    • Coding (0.0h)
    • ☑ Confirm weight, height, meals
    • ☐ Check in
    • Sewing (0.0h)
      • ☑ Make crinkly sheet
    • Writing (0.0h)
  • Discretionary - Play (7.8h - 4%)
  • Personal routines (18.9h - 11%)
  • Unpaid work (76.2h - 45%)
    • Childcare (66.3h - 39% of total)
  • Sleep (53.7h - 31% - average of 7.7 per day)

Monthly review: October 2016

It's delightful watching A- figure out movement. She's gotten more intentional with her hands: playing peek-a-boo by holding something up near her head, plucking the strings of my ukulele, exploring leaves (and trying to eat them!), grabbing the finger food that she likes.She's a pretty active crawler now, and she can get quite fast when she's going for the cats. She's also been working on creeping, getting her knees under her and lifting her tummy off the ground. She mostly still inchworms - lifts herself up, drops down to crawl one span, and then lifts herself up again - but she has almost figured out creeping all the way. There's plenty of room for her to crawl around now that W- has finished J-'s closet. We moved J-'s stuff back in her room, and now A- has floor and closet space again! I organized A-'s clothes and toys by type, and the system has been holding up well so far. We've been spending time outdoors to take advantage of the last few warm and sunny days of the year. The backyard has been a great place to explore the tastes and textures of the herbs in our garden. We've also walked to quite a few parks and libraries close by. The socks don't quite cover her legs when her pants ride up, so I made her a pair of leg warmers and a hat from a sweater. We lost one of the leg warmers already, but that's okay, I'll just have to make more. Gotta figure out cool weather walking gear! A-'s weight gain has slowed down a bit, but it's still within normal range, so maybe last month's rapid gains were part of a catch-up growth spurt. The pediatrician isn't worried, so neither are we. Probably due to all that growth, A-'s prosthetic eye has been popping out more often. We'll see the ocularist after our trip. In the meantime, we'll just have to deal. She gets upset when we restrain her to put it back in, but recovers okay after W- manages to reinsert the shell. I still worry from time to time that we might traumatize her or cause her to distrust us, but oh well, this is our life. Lots of sleep disruption too, but that's also pretty normal for this age. We go to bed late and wake up late, but there's still plenty of time in the afternoon for social stuff. I helped out Jen and Ewan, met Justin and Joy, spent Thanksgiving with W-'s family, checked out meetups for Junction parents and Toronto parent educators, finished the Make the Connection program, picked up lots of vegetables because of the Peer Nutrition program (including five bunches of kale!), and checked out various baby activities. I made a pirate hat and vest for A- and I cobbled together a quick pirate costume for myself based on stuff in my closet and a DIY felt eyepatch, and we handed out Halloween candy. Big step: I finally made it out to the dentist after two years of being away! I took the opportunity to find a new dentist, too, one who had good reviews for child dental care as well. W- took care of A- while I went for cleaning and a new patient exam. I needed two fillings, which is not a bad result for all that time. Level up! Level up in my consulting project, too. Got past a couple of technical roadblocks with some help, and now the add-on should be ready for other people to tinker with it. Busy month. W-'s been in constant motion, too: working on the porch, upgrading the workshop, investing in tools and skills… Whee! 2016-11-04a-october-2016-monthly-journal-review output Blog posts Sketches Time Occasionally remembered to track stuff as more specific categories instead of childcare (ex: breakfasts, cooking), even if I had A- with me. Also managed to fit in a little time for consulting, yay!
Category Last month % This month % Diff h/wk Diff h/wk
Personal 11.3 13.1 1.7 22.7 2.9
Discretionary - Social 2.2 3.4 1.3 6.0 2.2
Business - Earn 1.6 2.8 1.2 4.8 1.9
Discretionary - Family 1.1 1.9 0.8 3.3 1.3
Discretionary - Play 0.9 0.8 -0.1 1.4 -0.2
Business - Connect 0.2 0.0 -0.1 0.1 -0.2
Business - Build 0.4 0.1 -0.2 0.2 -0.4
Unpaid work 43.3 42.8 -0.5 74.3 -0.8
Discretionary - Productive 4.5 3.1 -1.3 5.4 -2.2
Sleep 34.6 31.9 -2.7 55.4 -4.5
Unpaid work - Childcare 38.1 35.1 -2.9 61.0 -4.9

Weekly review: Week ending November 4, 2016

It was A-'s first Halloween. I made her a pirate hat with embroidered skull and crossbones, and a vest too. I cobbled together my own quick pirate costume from stuff in my closet, and I made a quick eye patch. Yay! We handed out candy and then took a quick walk around the neighbourhood. I took A- to the More than Child's Play centre that's in the same community centre as the Peer Nutrition support site. It's a large, clean, well-lit space. She had fun playing with the xylophone. She's also been somewhat interested in bead mazes, although she hasn't quite gotten the hang of them yet. A- has been working on her motor control. She's managed to gently pet the cat a few times, and has gotten quite adept at dropping and tossing small objects. She can climb up from the carpet to the crib mattress, and from there, to the twin mattress. She's making good progress toward the 9-month milestones, yay! de Quervain's tenosynovitis now affects both of my hands enough for me to have to be careful during everyday activities. I might need to come up with a different plan for drawing and writing, focusing more on gross motor movements. Other small updates: It was great going for a walk through High Park with Quinn and Richard. Baking season definitely in full swing. Potato rosemary bread, etc. Pediatrician thinks A- is doing okay, whew. Ready for travel. Consulting project: figured out how to build that add-on they were asking for, hooray! Also, scraped data from another site for a friend. Taking it easy. 2016-11-09a-week-ending-2016-11-04-journal-weekly output Blog posts Sketches Focus areas and time review
  • Business (6.3h - 3%)
    • Earn (3.7h - 58% of Business)
      • ☐ Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (1.1h - 16% of Business)
      • ☑ Prepare invoice
      • ☑ Write shareholder's resolutions
    • Connect (1.6h - 25% of Business)
  • Relationships (2.6h - 1%)
  • Discretionary - Productive (6.0h - 3%)
    • Drawing (3.7h)
    • Emacs (0.0h)
    • Coding (0.0h)
    • Sewing (0.6h)
    • Writing (0.3h)
  • Discretionary - Play (0.0h - 0%)
  • Personal routines (20.5h - 12%)
  • Unpaid work (76.2h - 45%)
    • Childcare (64.4h - 38% of total)
  • Sleep (56.3h - 33% - average of 8.0 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending October 28, 2016

More sleep disruptions for A-, but W- helped make the time more manageable. I've been working on getting her used to being set down to sleep, but I don't think we'll get the hang of it before the trip. Ah well! We can deal with fussiness and tough times as long as we keep things safe. It's amusing presenting A- with a variety of finger food and noting her preferences. At one meal, she ate all the cucumber sticks before moving on to beets and then cheese, even though the cucumber sticks required her to reach past the other items. So far so good with the weight gain. Her most recent weight was 7.002 kg, gaining roughly +81g/week. That's within the normal range, and she continues to be just under the 15th percentile curve. She's been crawling around a lot, so there's definitely been an increase in calorie expenditure. I guess she's been keeping up with intake too. Sometimes I get into a rut in terms of her meals, defaulting to cereal and mushrooms or cheese or whatever's available. It would probably be good to sit down and plan more baby-friendly meals this week, since she can't have the curry I just made. (The boxed Japanese curry we like has honey in it.) Went on plenty of walks despite the cool weather. To help keep A- cozy, I sewed a pair of baby leg warmers and a hat from a sweater. We've already lost one of the leg warmers, but that's okay, I can make more. :) They work pretty well, when they can stay on. I also embroidered skull and crossbones on the felt pirate hat I made for A-'s Halloween costume. I'm glad I did. The white thread was much more visible than the chalk outline I started with. We finished the Make the Connection course delivered by Toronto Public Health. I didn't get any photos sorted out for the album. Hard to get interaction shots. Might make more of an effort to get decent lighting and framing so that GoPro videos are useful. If not, no worries. I've been practising Brahms' Lullaby and I'm a Little Teapot on the ukulele, and I can mostly finger-pick them at a decent tempo. I can only get so far before A- wants a turn at plucking the strings, which is totally cool because it's for her anyway. :) Figured out database persistence for my consulting project, and did a quick analysis of top searches as well. Got my business taxes ready, too. Just have to review and submit the numbers. I might do that during our trip. Need to figure out a sustainable rhythm for discretionary time… 2016-10-31a-week-ending-2016-10-28-journal-weekly output Blog posts Sketches Focus areas and time review
  • Business (10.2h - 6%)
    • Earn (9.3h - 90% of Business)
      • ☑ Analyze phrases
      • ☑ Add error handling
      • ☑ Sort out persistence
      • ☐ Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Build (0.8h - 8% of Business)
      • ☐ Write shareholder's resolutions
      • ☐ Prepare invoice
    • Connect (0.1h - 1% of Business)
  • Relationships (3.1h - 1%)
    • ☑ Review insurance information
  • Discretionary - Productive (4.2h - 2%)
    • Drawing (3.1h)
    • Emacs (0.2h)
    • Coding (0.0h)
      • ☑ Check out Samba share
    • Sewing (0.8h)
      • ☑ Make pirate hat
    • Writing (0.0h)
    • ☑ Sketch garden
    • ☑ Update Kiva
  • Discretionary - Play (0.0h - 0%)
  • Personal routines (26.1h - 15%)
  • Unpaid work (72.5h - 43%)
    • Childcare (68.5h - 40% of total)
  • Sleep (51.8h - 30% - average of 7.4 per day)