Category Archives: review

Weekly review: Week ending May 24, 2019

  • Kaizen
    • I put away our winter coats.
    • I helped W- check the roof for leaks.
    • We decided to scale back our gardening because A- and I might be away this summer.
    • I baked sourdough bread in a skillet. Nicer crust this time.
    • I looked into the Google Photos REST API, but I might want to do my photo organization a different way. It’s annoying to check which albums a photo is in.
    • I called my cellphone provider to turn on porting protection.
    • I changed the synchronization directory for Orgzly and cleared my inbox.
    • I used Tasker to rename my QuickNote from Markor.
    • I tried a different sourdough recipe. I used the stand mixer to knead it until it cleaned the sides of the bowl, which took a surprisingly long time. When I baked it in a loaf pan the next day, I worried that I’d overmixed it because it felt so hard. It turned out fine – even a little soft inside because I pulled it out of the oven early. Yum!
    • We used six hours of babysitting time to make good progress on fixing up the shelves in the kitchen. We cleared two cabinets. W- helped me work with drywall, use the mitre saw to cut pieces of trim, use the nail gun to fasten the trim, and scrub sticky shelves with baking soda. An afternoon well spent!
    • The new version of Orgzly has a widget for creating a new note in a specified notebook. Great! I put that on my phone’s home screen so that I can use it for capturing thoughts.
  • Us
    • W- and I played the first Borderlands game.
    • W- hung out with A- almost the whole day. I did some cooking and baking, but I don’t feel like I was as productive as he might have been.
    • I gave some feedback on Emacs conference plans.
    • I checked flights and travel insurance for a possible July/Aug trip to the Netherlands.
    • I helped Amin check out the capabilities and limitations of Jitsi for a potential Emacs conference.
    • I partially updated my ledger.
    • I updated the investments part of my ledger.
    • I was a little cranky with A- while we were washing dishes, but I was able to let go of it quickly because I saw that she was actually pretty careful about what she was doing.
    • The main point of the first Nobody’s Perfect parenting workshop session was that it’s good to take care of yourself. You’re top priority.
    • We stayed up a little to play Borderlands. We decided not to get the remastered one for now, as that would require a PS4 too.
  • Gross motor
    • A- went across the monkey bars with just a little help.
  • Fine motor
    • A- found the yarn needle in her caddy and asked for some thread. We gave her some butcher twine. She threaded the needle herself. The babysitter helped her sew a small bag by holding pieces of felt together and pointing to where A- should push the needle in or out.
  • Sensory
    • A- had fun at the playground despite the strong winds. She liked climbing up and sliding down, and she also played in the sandbox.
  • Language
    • “Goodness!”
    • W-: “Can I eat this?” A-: “You may.”
    • “I’m still in KLM livery.”
    • “I’m spraying special aluminum oxide particles into the open areas,” A- said as she watered the grass.
    • “I messed up and that was an experience.”
    • “I want to go to preschool. I want to be part of a team.”
    • “That was lovely.”
  • Art
    • “I love the patterns of red and yellow.”
    • “I drew a rectangle.”
  • Self-care and independence
    • A- decided to have a shower instead of a bath. She even got her hair wet.
    • A- brought down one of the hand towels and packed it in her bag. She said, “I can fix my own problems with this towel.”
    • A- generally stayed with me during the parenting workshop. She ate her snacks and played quietly beside me. She independently used the toilet while I stood outside the door.
  • Eating
    • A- was very keen on having an ice cream cone. She scooped ice cream out of it using a teaspoon, then ate it up.
  • Sleep
    • “Can I sleep?” We said yes, and A- fell asleep shortly after.
  • Emotion
    • Towards the end of A-‘s babysitting session, she got a bit tired and frustrated. She wanted to ask the babysitter to get out of her chair, but she couldn’t use the words that the babysitter wanted to teach her. She ended up just leaning against the chair. After the babysitter got up, she dragged the chair into the hallway.
    • A- had a tantrum because I ate a few of her carrot sticks, and because she was impatient about going to the workshop. She settled after I brought out the carrier and put her in it.
    • Me: “You spent a lot of time in the green zone today.” A-: “And a little in the red zone.”
  • Household
    • I bought tomato, rosemary, thyme, and strawberry plants. A- helped me plant the tomatoes. Whipe I was thinking about where to put the other plants, she brought the thyme over and started trying to dump it out. I let her pick spots for the herbs and I planted them.
    • A- has definitely taken ownership of watering the grass. “No, you may not have a turn!”
    • A- made up a dance for when she waters the grass. There’s a lot of wiggling.
  • Social
    • A- didn’t want to play with one of the kids at the playground, probably because that kid had followed her around wanting to play with her. A- covered her eye and ran to me. The other kid often tried approaching her while we were there, and A- kept turning to me in distress. Eventually she calmed down enough to play sort of near the other kid, although she still preferred to play on her own.
  • World
    • A- had fun watching W- use the power washer to clean the green bin. She also got to try the caulking gun and our neighbour’s paint sprayer.

Blog posts

Time

Category The other week % Last week % Diff % h/wk Diff h/wk
Unpaid work 1.0 9.1 8.1 15.3 13.6
Discretionary – Play 3.9 7.3 3.5 12.3 5.8
Business 0.2 1.9 1.6 3.1 2.7
Personal 3.8 4.4 0.5 7.3 0.9
Discretionary – Productive 5.4 5.5 0.1 9.3 0.2
Discretionary – Social 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Discretionary – Family 2.5 0.2 -2.3 0.3 -3.8
Sleep 35.4 30.5 -4.9 51.2 -8.2
A- 47.8 41.1 -6.7 69.1 -11.2

Weekly review: Week ending May 17, 2019

  • Kaizen
    • W- repainted the insides of two of the kitchen cabinets.
    • I used Tasker to make a notification-triggered dialog to help me type or dictate text into ConnectBot. I also changed TERM to xterm, which seems to stop it from choking on long lines. That might make it easier to use Emacs for quick notes.
    • I merged the changes to my Emacs config.
    • I merged outstanding pull requests and issues for planet.emacsen.org into planet.emacslife.com .
    • I added conversion rates to the USD transactions in my ledger so that I can get better reports.
    • I fixed the SSL certificate for sketches.sachachua.com .
    • I added a :target option to TOC in Org Mode. Whee! I even wrote documentation and tests. I feel like such a grown-up.
    • W- and I talked a little about plans for working on the house. I want to learn practical life skills, so it’s worth paying for babysitting instead of paying for home maintenance help. We’ll experiment with getting a babysitter on Saturday to see what that might be like. A- seems to be on board with the idea.
    • Because A- will probably still occasionally run into questions on the playground and in school even after she gets a painted ocular prosthesis, I ordered a book on parenting children with a facial difference.
    • I pumped air into my bicycle tires and hitched up the trailer. A- accompanied me on a couple of errands to get cat food and groceries. It was nice to be back on a bike again, even though it took me a while to remember how to shift gears.
  • Us
    • Mustard and balsamic chicken thighs: quick and easy
    • I stayed up too late and felt very tired and sneezy during the day.
    • Just noticed a number of small scratches on my phone, including one right in front of the front camera. Oh well! I think I’ll hang on to this until it’s unusable instead of getting on the upgrade treadmill.
  • Gross motor
    • A- did the I love you gesture a number of times.
    • We introduced Melissa and H- to our favourite playground at the moment. The kids had lots of fun climbing, sliding, swinging, and spinning.
    • We went to the High Park nature playground. A- liked playing with the slides, zipline-type thing, and swing. She mostly went around with me, but she also experimented with going around by herself.
  • Fine motor
    • A- carefully coloured in the animal shapes at the High Park Zoo.
  • Sensory
    • We swam at Pam McConnell. A- liked the floatation devices.
  • Language
    • A- asked the babysitter to read Polo aime Bottine.
    • A- did the eye exam by reading letters, which impressed the orthoptist. As the letters got smaller, her voice got smaller and higher.
    • “In the meantime, we can talk. Once there was a little boy named Daddy, who loved–what did you love?” “Ice cream.” “… who loved ice cream.”
  • Art
    • A- tried out the paint roller. She made one painting that reminded us of the sun, and another that reminded us of tigers.
  • Self-care and independence
    • A- got stuck behind the automatic door at the supermarket. She stayed calm instead of panicking. She followed my hand signals and stepped aside, then went through when a grown-up triggered the door.
    • A- had a small wound on her finger, and dirt had gotten into it. We cleaned it out with alcohol swabs, which she didn’t like at all. After we covered it with a bandage, she was fine again.
    • A- was more relaxed in the shower today, and even got her hair wet.
  • Eating
    • A- asked for three kinds of sourdough for breakfast: pancakes, breadsticks, and bread.
  • Sleep
    • A- seems to have just rolled over and gone to sleep after our usual bedtime routines. Neat! She’s been waking up between 6 to 7:30 and goes to bed around 8:30 PM, with the occasional afternoon nap if she had lots of fun at the playground.
  • Emotion
    • A- was delaying bedtime, and W- got impatient with her. A- said, “No Daddy being bossy!” After she calmed down and I settled her into bed, she asked, “Why is Daddy so bossy?” I explained why we set boundaries, why W- wouldn’t let her slide down the stairs backwards on her bare tummy, and why that doesn’t make him bossy.
    • We were both a bit grumpy because of hunger and fatigue.
  • Household
    • A- helped me adjust the seasoning for the sweet potato soup.
  • Social
    • A- asked for canned vegetable soup for lunch, so the babysitter checked with me and then prepared it for her. After some time playing at home, A- asked permission to go to the playground. She walked all the way there (1 km) and they stayed until it rained. We tried six hours with the babysitter this time around. A- felt it was still too short! :)
    • A- liked going down the staircase with eyes closed, relying on me for guidance.
    • One of the kids at the playground kept asking A- about her eye and wouldn’t back off until I climbed into the playset. A- had felt a little overwhelmed, so she resorted to saying “No, no, no!” and covering her eye. She let out her tension with a good cry in my arms, and then went back to playing.
    • A- and I talked a bit before going to bed. She asked about the kid who kept asking about her eye, and we talked about dealing with people’s questions. We talked about the ocular prosthesis she’s getting in a few weeks, how that can help, and how she’ll still need to deal with questions if she doesn’t want to wear it (she says her conformer gets very cold in winter) or if she needs to take it out.
  • Pretend
    • “I’m going to go back to eating my silage.”
    • “I need you to be an excavator and I be a hydraulic ram.”
  • Cognition
    • At the science centre, A- pretended to rock out in front of the green screen, imitating other kids. She had fun at the pretend supermarket. We didn’t see any smocks near the water table, so she asked me to take her shirt off before playing with the water.
  • World
    • We checked the TTC lost and found for A-‘s shoes, but no luck.
    • We went with Melissa and H- to the High Park Zoo for llama feeding. A- fed the llamas with a little guidance from me, and then delightedly fed them by herself.
    • A- was curious about the temporary tattoes at the High Park Zoo, so I donated $1 and got one for her. She counted partway through the transfer time.
  • Oops
    • A- tumbled down a few steps. It was probably partly because she was impatient and wanted me to play tinikling with her, and partly because her pants were a little too long and loose.

Blog posts

Time

Category The other week % Last week % Diff % h/wk Diff h/wk
Discretionary – Productive 1.2 5.4 4.2 9.1 7.1
Discretionary – Family 0.3 2.5 2.2 4.1 3.7
A- 45.9 47.8 1.9 80.3 3.2
Discretionary – Play 3.2 3.9 0.7 6.5 1.1
Personal 4.1 3.8 -0.2 6.5 -0.4
Discretionary – Social 0.7 0.0 -0.7 0.0 -1.2
Sleep 36.3 35.4 -0.9 59.5 -1.5
Business 2.5 0.2 -2.3 0.4 -3.9
Unpaid work 5.8 1.0 -4.8 1.7 -8.1

Weekly review: Week ending May 10, 2019

  • Kaizen
    • W- replaced the dish rack because the coating on the old one had worn down.
    • A- slept so early, I had some bonus focused time in the evening. I reviewed my old tasks and organized my Org agenda a bit more.
    • W- bent the cup holders on the new dish rack to make them more functional.
  • Us
    • Sourdough pancakes: so fluffy!
    • Sourdough pancakes: More sourdoughy, yum yum
    • Sourdough grissini (breadsticks): Burned half of the batch, but it still worked out great after I cut away the black parts. I put them in the bag too early, though, so condensation made them a bit stale. Try and try again!
    • W- braised some beef. It was so tender and yummy.
    • I made sourdough rye bread for the first time. It was a little moist inside, but it still turned out yummy.
  • Gross motor
    • A-‘s been working on balancing in the tree pose all by herself.
    • A- wanted to leave school early to go to the park behind Runnymede library. She climbed and slid down a few times.
    • A- was curious about the exercise equipment at the park, so we played there a bit.
    • At the swimming pool, A- liked floating in her Puddle Jumpers, venturing a little further away from me. She also practised getting out of and into the pool. She accidentally took in a little water, so I hugged her to help her calm down. After a few minutes, she was ready to play some more.
  • Fine motor
    • The craft activity at school was to make a Mother’s Day card. She decided to make one for Daddy instead. In addition to lots of back-and-forth scribbles, she also practised writing, drew a circle and shaded inside it, and carefully shaded a corner.
  • Language
    • A- used the words “our” and “ourselves” correctly.
    • A-‘s random word of the day: abomasum (a cow’s fourth stomach), because we’ve been reading books about milk production.
    • We were waiting to check out at the store when A- told me that she needed to go to the bathroom. I asked her if she could wait approximately ten minutes, or if we needed to leave our cart and go now. She thought about it and said, “Six minutes.”
    • “You are so Tagalog-y.”
    • Me: “It looks like there’s a small slide, too.” A-: “Hmm. How convenient.”
  • Self-care and independence
    • A- switched to using the electric toothbrush again. She’s getting pretty good at brushing her teeth by herself.
    • I explained to A- that I would need to focus on cooking for about half an hour. She agreed to play independently, and mostly managed to do so while I cooked broccoli and tonkatsu.
    • At bedtime, A- told me that she wanted to go to sleep on her own. “Do Mom things,” she said, so I did. Thirty minutes later, she called for me via the baby monitor, and asked if she could sleep on top of me.
  • Sleep
    • A- wanted to go to school after nature class, so she napped while I carried her.
  • Emotion
    • A- had a big tantrum because she was frustrated when she asked for a video and I said no. It overlapped with another tantrum because I ate the muffin on her plate. She fell asleep in the carrier after crying.
    • A- asked me to read The Day You Begin. As I read the story about feeling like you’re on the outside, I asked her if it’s like how she feels when kids stare at her eye. She nodded.
  • Household
    • A- helped clean the mirrors and the glass door.
  • Social
    • A- enjoyed playing with the babysitter for 5 hours. A- said she even had a nap. She wants to try a longer session. We’ll try 6 hours next week, so it’s a little more like a kindergarten day.
    • We invited Jen, Ewan, and E- over for burgers. A- and E- had lots of fun dancing, playing with balls, building contraptions, and hammering.
    • We visited Joy and J-. The kids had lots of fun playing with toys, jumping on the bed, and listening to stories.
    • We had so much fun playing a game where I’d tell A- she wasn’t allowed to pounce on me, and she’d gleefully tell me she’s allowed and would pounce anyway.
    • We had dimsum with W-‘s family. A- have people high fives.
  • Pretend
    • A- pretended to be a flight attendant. She wanted to pour soy milk for me, and to put food and drink on a tray.
  • World
    • A- said, “I want to go out to the open meadow.” (She meant the backyard.) She played with bubbles and giant bubbles in the deck.
    • We watched a dump truck drop off a bin and pick up another bin.
    • We had fun squelching through mud in nature class. A- also fed the turtle and explored the sandbox.
    • We had a little time before swimming, so we watched workers repair the road.
  • Oops
    • Oops! Lost A-‘s blue Crocs because I didn’t look behind me, and I did the shoe check when I stepped out of the subway train.
  • Thoughts
    • Realization: When I have snippets of free time, I don’t usually use that time to draw. I read, write, or code.

Blog posts

Time

Category The other week % Last week % Diff % h/wk Diff h/wk
A- 33.5 45.9 12.4 77.1 20.9
Unpaid work 1.8 5.8 4.0 9.7 6.8
Discretionary – Play 0.0 3.2 3.2 5.4 5.4
Business 0.0 2.5 2.5 4.3 4.3
Sleep 34.0 36.3 2.3 60.9 3.9
Discretionary – Productive 0.0 1.2 1.2 2.0 2.0
Personal 3.1 4.1 1.0 6.8 1.7
Discretionary – Social 0.0 0.7 0.7 1.2 1.2
Discretionary – Family 27.7 0.3 -27.5 0.4 -46.2

Weekly review: Week ending May 3, 2019

  • Kaizen
    • I spent a little while trying to fix the playdough by adding flour and cream of tartar. It got less sticky and more elastic, although I think I made it a little stiff.
    • W- made pizza dough from scratch. It was nice and elastic.
    • We asked for some of Tita Annet’s sourdough starter.
    • Next time I fly, I should definitely wear my sandals on the plane.
    • We used baking soda to get rid of the ring in the bathtub. W- cleaned up lots of things in the house, too.
  • Us
    • It turned out that the external drive that I had brought over to Kathy for use as her offsite backup already had a copy of her files from 2017, when my dad had mistakenly grabbed the drive and given it to me. That was pretty convenient, actually, as it had some files she wanted to copy.
    • Bert Jan showed us the Point It book that they’d found tremendously useful on their trips. I wonder if something like that might be fun to share with A-.
    • We visited Dan and Bert Jan. We chatted about fandom, travel, tai chi, healthcare, practical knowledge, parenting, the environment, feminism, and pockets. A- had fun with the crayons, playdough, and toys they happened to have lying around.
    • It was nice to go from downtown Den Haag to a large, quiet park.
    • We observed G-‘s horse riding lesson.
    • We went to the children’s farm, the supermarket, and the bank.
    • We met Kathy’s neighbours, who were just as awesome as described.
    • W- cooked bibimbap and we invited Kathy’s neighbours over.
    • Dan visited us and shared more stories about her travels.
    • It was a good idea paying for Vodafone NL’s 10 euro bundle. I used 300mb and a handful of texts.
    • Going through Pearson still sucks. The line at customs was long, and we waited even longer because we declared the food we’d brought.
    • We took the subway home, although the luggage wheels didn’t survive the walk. W- is determined to get a two-wheeled suitcase next time – something with big wheels.
    • It turns out the plants that I thought weren’t chives were actually chives. Also, the spring onions are growing well.
  • Gross motor
    • A- liked playing with the Stomp Rocket. The kids suggested playing outside, but two of the rockets landed too far (one in the neighbours’ back yard, one on the roof), so I redirected them to something else.
  • Fine motor
    • A- was really interested in the Connect 4 game. She liked dropping the yellow markers into the grid, taking turns, and clearing the grid of all the markers. She didn’t play to win, of course.
  • Sensory
    • A- liked the playground with the zip line. W- whizzed her up and down the zip line a few times.
    • So much water play inside and outside!
  • Language
    • I told A- a little about how her brain is still developing a lot and why some things are hard for her to do right now. Some time later, I heard her tell AG, “My brain is still developing.” The next day, I heard AG (who’s 5 years old) say that her brain was still developing too.
    • A- was pretending to sleep. She said, “Honk shu, honk shu, letter zzzzzzzz.”
  • Music
    • The precorder and Suzuki recorder arrived! They both sound nice. W- made a recorder stand.
  • Self-care and independence
    • A- asked for teething medicine, so we gave her half a junior acetaminophen.
  • Eating
    • W-, A-, and I all liked haring. A- had quite a few bites. We also liked kibbeling.
  • Sleep
    • “I’m not tired, I’m not tired,” A- protested. A little while later, I noticed she was spacing out while playing with playdough. She accepted my offer to take her upstairs and fell asleep in my lap while I tidied up the playdough. She woke up just enough for me to brush her teeth before I put her to bed.
    • Because the plane book I made mentioned that we sleep when the lights are dimmed, A- asked us to ask the flight attendant when the lights will be dimmed. He said he’d ask the captain, since it was a daytime flight. When the lights were eventually dimmed, A- settled down for a nap.
  • Emotion
    • We were all cranky, tired, and hungry by the time we got home, but our mood improved after food.
  • Household
    • A- folded kitchen towels, matching the corners precisely and then folding into thirds.
  • Social
    • I spent the day hanging out with the kids at home. It mostly went smoothly, although I think A- got a little jealous and tired towards the end.
  • Cognition
    • W- started teaching A- how to play a memory game with cards. She got the idea of matching, but was a little fuzzy on taking turns.
  • Other
    • W- and A- found a canister of spray lubricant in the plane’s bathroom. They turned it in and the flight attendant joked about A- having squeaky knees.
  • Oops
    • I forgot my water bottle at the stables.

Blog posts

Time

Category The other week % Last week % Diff % h/wk Diff h/wk
Discretionary – Family 6.6 27.7 21.2 46.6 35.6
Personal 2.9 3.1 0.2 5.2 0.3
Business 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Discretionary – Play 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Discretionary – Social 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0
Sleep 34.9 34.0 -0.9 57.1 -1.5
Unpaid work 3.5 1.8 -1.7 3.0 -2.9
Discretionary – Productive 8.9 0.0 -8.9 0.0 -15.0
A- 43.2 33.5 -9.8 56.2 -16.4

Weekly review: Week ending April 19, 2019

  • Kaizen
    • I reverted to Disqus comments for spam filtering.
  • Us
    • Instead of sleeping or doing productive things, I decided to play Borderlands 2 a lot with W-. It was almost like old times!
    • I organized my travel clothes.
    • I checked out Emerald City since W- had watched a few episodes.
    • I thought about whether to find an independent babysitter or to continue with an agency. It’s actually kinda nifty getting such different babysitters each time, and it’s nice not having to mess around with screening or scheduling.
    • I made lasagna.
    • I hemmed my pajama pants and W-‘s sweatpants.
  • Gross motor
    • A- walked a lot. She wanted to go to Riverdale Farm, so she walked to the subway, from the bus to the farm, and from the farm to the playground.
  • Language
    • “Can you sing a French song? how about Frere Jacques?”
    • Me: “How about pancakes?”
      A-: “Christmas tree pancakes?”
      Me: “We can’t, we don’t have spinach. Plain?”
      A-: “Oh, but we have food coloring!”
      Me: “We try not to use it.”
      A-: “But it’s food!”
    • We were talking about her side and my side of the sungka board. She outlined her part with her hands and said, “My sungka moira, your sungka moira.”
    • A- wanted me to read “Ang Aking Paligid.” When we got to the page with the dress, she decided to change into her yellow dress. She asked me to bring the book upstairs and open it to the page. After she changed into her dress, she said, “Nasaan ang libro?” Her first Tagalog question!
    • “I call myself ‘girl’ and I call Daddy ‘de jongen.'” For the second time, I’ve had to explain to a somewhat bewildered grown-up that A- has picked up a Dutch word from my attempts to learn through Duolingo.
    • I had fun watching A- and the sitter walk to school. The sitter kept the conversation going by pointing out lots of interesting details.
    • “I’m just making up random words.”
    • A- turned to W- and asked, “Are you strong enough to carry a cantaloupe?”
  • Music
    • After a few days of asking me to sing the “eh” song (her name for Sitsiritsit, because of the line “ang babae sa lansangan”), she suddenly sang the whole first stanza pretty clearly.
    • Since A- could sing the first stanza of Sitsiritsit, I started singing Lupang Hinirang to her as well. She said, “I like listening to Tagalog songs.”
  • Self-care and independence
    • I asked A- if she wanted to have more babysitting time. She asked for more days, and she said, “I want to be more independent.”
    • A- drank so much water at bedtime. Still made it to the bathroom the next morning, whew!
    • A- got the hang of gargling, and did it half a dozen times.
    • A- wanted to try sleeping under blankets instead of in her sleep sack. She asked for all three blankets to be piled on top of her.
  • Eating
    • Carnitas: I tried the pre-marinated pulled pork from the supermarket deli. Success! Good in a burrito. A- even had some.
    • A- really liked fishballs.
    • A- asked for a watermelon. She really enjoyed eating it for evening snack.
  • Sleep
    • A- decided to sleep on the crib mattress in her small sleep sack. She chewed on her gum massager for a few minutes and then fell asleep.
    • A- resisted going to sleep. She eventually got upset enough to ask me to brush her teeth, carry her in the carrier, put her in sleep sack, and walk around.
  • Emotion
    • A- had a tantrum in the basement. She wanted to pick up more metal items with her magnet instead of coming upstairs with me. I was worried that she was starting to sound too tired, so I wanted to at least get her out of the workshop before she melted down. I counted, then carried her out. She cried and asked for W- instead, so he swapped in and I washed dishes upstairs. She eventually calmed down with him, and they went through the bedtime routine. She fell asleep in bed early, so yeah, she was pretty tired.

      A gentler approach might have been for me to ask her to set a limit (how many more games of pick it up?), because she tends to respond well to agreements. She was stonewalling a bit on going upstairs, though. Maybe I could have exaggerated the silliness by talking about bringing down pillows and blankets. I didn’t really need to herd her upstairs so that I could wash the dishes. If she spent another half an hour playing and then had a tantrum about that or something else, I could still offer comfort after washing hands. So yeah, room for improvement on my part too.

      Hmm… I don’t think counting is a technique that works well for us at the moment. Let’s see if there are other ways to defuse the situation next time she wants to keep playing…

    • Lots of shrieking – A- seemed to be frustrated about something.
    • I talked to A- about videos and compared it to being a visitor: enjoy, but always be ready to let go.
    • A- had a tantrum when I was too tired to carry her in the carrier, but she calmed down after I rested and then asked her how many times she wanted to go around in the carrier.
  • Social
    • We brought Melissa and H- some chicken pot pie and chocolate-zucchini muffins. A- practised being a visitor, following H-‘s suggestions for things to play with and letting her take things back as needed. Both of them did pretty well.
    • One trick to making morning brushing go more smoothly is to let her brush my teeth. While doing so, she said, “Open wide, my little dear.” A short while later, she said, “I want to take lots of care of you.”
    • J1 makes appreciative sounds while eating. A- started doing the same while eating next to her.
    • J1 and A- took turns very smoothly with J1’s rocking horse.
    • I asked A- if she wanted to go to school, visit a friend, or invite a friend over. She chose to invite J1 over, so Joy, J1, and J2 came. A- was a pretty good host, amiably sharing most of her toys, and mostly keeping her cool when she asked for a toy back. J1 was fascinated by the cats and by the piano. We all had a good time.
    • A- wanted to go to school (really a drop-in centre) with the babysitter. She asked me to come along and stay in the yard while she played inside with the sitter. I packed my laptop, RSA token, phone, Bluetooth keyboard, sketchbook, and book. I told A- that I’d stay there for as long as I could, and that I’d also come and pick them up once school was done. A- walked all the way to school holding the sitter’s hand while I followed them with the stroller. She went inside while I stayed in the yard, and then came out again for lunch break. I worked while my laptop battery lasted, then said goodbye and headed home. When I went back to pick them up, I offered A- a choice of staying for circle time and going home with me, or walking home with the sitter. She picked the sitter, and we made it home in time for the end of our babysitting session. Yay!
    • We chatted with Lola. A- liked interacting with her.
    • A- wanted to invite Melissa and H- over. A- and H- had fun blowing bubbles, jumping on the bed, playing with blocks and animals, eating muffins, and pretending H- was a baby.
    • We went to AO’s birthday party. A- was a good guest. She enjoyed the pizza, played with toys, shared her bubbles, and gave things back whenever AO wanted them again. We went to the park afterwards and spent some time on the swings.
  • World
    • At Riverdale Farm, we had fun watching the ducklings, chicks, and goats.
    • A- was very curious about her body, so we talked about her body for a bit.
  • Other
    • A- liked playing with a small doll at school, and she often pretended to take care of me or other people. I ordered a doll for her. I also bought the Playing Preschool PDF for theme and activity ideas.

Blog posts

Time

Category The other week % Last week % Diff % h/wk Diff h/wk
Discretionary – Social 0.6 4.2 3.6 7.0 6.0
Discretionary – Play 2.0 4.7 2.6 7.8 4.4
Unpaid work 6.6 6.8 0.2 11.5 0.3
Business 1.8 1.9 0.1 3.2 0.2
Discretionary – Family 0.6 0.1 -0.4 0.2 -0.8
Discretionary – Productive 3.6 2.8 -0.7 4.7 -1.2
Sleep 35.8 34.5 -1.3 58.0 -2.2
Personal 12.6 10.6 -1.9 17.9 -3.2
A- 36.4 34.3 -2.2 57.5 -3.6

Weekly review: Week ending April 12, 2019

  • Kaizen
    • I mended my carrier a little more.
    • I cleared Google Photos data on my phone, and that seems to have gotten it unstuck.
    • I enabled Google Drive’s integration with Google Photos, and I set up Cloud Sync on our NAS.
  • Us
    • I went for a blood test to check if I have enough measles antibodies, just in case.
  • Gross motor
    • A- suggested going to the indoor playground, so we did. She liked the toddler area. She was fascinated by the vacuum tubes, and eventually worked up the courage to feed them balls if I guided her hands. She pushed the button all by herself. She also climbed all the way up to the big slide by herself, although she still wanted me to join her on the way down.
    • In the pool, A- experimented with floating in the Puddle Jumper vest and lifting her toes up above the surface of the water.
  • Language
    • A- was building a tower. She held a piece and said, “I need something to support it.”
    • A- noticed that two words sounded very similar.
    • A- was talking to the babysitter about people. I heard snatches of conversation: boy, girl, man. Then A- said, “de jongen, de jongen.” I went upstairs to help the babysitter figure out what she was saying, because of course the babysitter isn’t going to be expecting a sprinkling of Dutch…
    • A- specifically asked for the Flip Flop Barnyard video on how cows are milked by farmers. She said she likes it because the woman has long sleeves.
  • Music
    • A- wanted to listen to music, so I brought up a few videos of Vivaldi’s Spring piece because she liked it during music class. Inspired by one of the videos, I spent a little time learning how to play part of it on the recorder. A- lent me hers.
    • A- made up a new song: “I like to be in the carrier. I like to be in the carrier. I like to be in the carrier, especially when I’m upset.”
    • Other new songs: “I want to bake in the oven, especially muffins, and then I eat them.” “I want to be in the stroller for a walk around the block, especially when I’m tired.”
  • Self-care and independence
    • I asked A- if she thought the time with the babysitter was too short, just right, or too long. She immediately said, “Too short.” So we’ll see the babysitter next week for five hours instead of four!
    • A- wanted to wear a diaper again. We said that was just a special day before. She said, “I’m going to drink lots of water,” and started chugging water like crazy.
    • We noticed a small bump inside A-‘s eyelid. It doesn’t seem to bother her.
    • A- didn’t want to brush her teeth in the morning. She said she wanted to do it only at dinner. I decided not to force her, but I told her we would go to music class once she had clean teeth. She eventually relented and let me brush her teeth.
    • “I want to be independent. Would you like to sleep in Daddy’s room?” A- actually lasted for thirty minutes in a dark room by herself. Progress!
  • Eating
    • Chicken adobo: Yum yum, easy to put together. Paired with ginger broccoli.
    • A- ate so much adobo at dinner. When W- came home and had a late dinner, she taxed his too.
    • A- happily munched salad leaves! She really liked the pea shoots.
  • Emotion
    • I wonder how to improve our brushing teeth routine. I don’t like having to make her upset before we can make progress…
    • There was a lot of shrieking. A- seems to be experimenting with her voice. It might be somewhat influenced by the positive reaction we had to her squeals of joy over the muffin liners (pure joy, it was awesome).
  • Household
    • We planted peas and scallions. The ground was still a little frozen.
    • We planted more peas and the rest of the onions.
    • We made zucchini chocolate chip muffins.
  • Social
    • A-: “Mama has friends and I have friends and Daddy does not.”
      Me: “Daddy has friends.”
      A-: “Mama and I have friends and J- has lots and lots of friends and Daddy has one.”
      Me: “Who?”
      A-: “Dan.” (A- remembered one conversation we had about visiting Dan.)
    • A- enjoyed the rolling ball activity in music class. Afterwards, we hung out with Rebecca and AW in Allan Gardens. It was rainy and we didn’t bring rain pants, so we couldn’t do much outdoors.
    • We bumped into Melissa and H- at the community centre after swimming. We caught up while playing in the playground.
  • World
    • We went to nature class and learned about nocturnal animals. We broke apart a sterilized owl pellet and found a mouse bone.

Blog posts

Time

Category The other week % Last week % Diff % h/wk Diff h/wk
A- 46.7 36.4 -10.2 61.2 -17.2
Business 3.4 1.8 -1.6 3.0 -2.8
Discretionary – Play 2.3 2.0 -0.3 3.4 -0.4
Unpaid work 1.6 6.6 5.0 11.2 8.4
Discretionary – Social 0.0 0.6 0.6 1.0 1.0
Discretionary – Family 0.2 0.6 0.4 1.0 0.6
Sleep 38.2 35.8 -2.3 60.2 -3.9
Discretionary – Productive 2.9 3.6 0.7 6.0 1.1
Personal 4.7 12.6 7.9 21.1 13.2