Monday, April 30, 2007

Crazy Days in Texas

It was quite the exciting day today. You'll have to check out the link for that. Here's the little munchkin practicing her modeling:

Friday, April 27, 2007

9 month check up (a few weeks late)

17lbs, 14 oz (8108g) - 75%
27.5 inches (70cm)- 50%
43 cm (head circumference) - 25%

So I can stop worrying about Angelina being underfed! Until last month she was on the skinny side. No longer. All that great mommy's milk along with all the good food Papa has been making for her. She got two shots today, but actually screamed more when the nice doctor was just looking in her ears. My kid does not like to be fussed with!

On another note, she has consistently had a small head. I don't get it. If it's so small, why did she have such a hard time coming out of me?!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Whose child is this?

I know she came out of me. I *saw* her come out of me. So what happened to MY genes?

Everyone has said she looks just like Frèdèric, and while I could see some resemblance in the eyes, when I look at him I see a big hairy guy. Not my dainty little girl.

Alas, now I have seen pictures of him as a baby, there is no doubt. Angelina is Frèdèric's "mini me", apart from a few key parts...

Here's Tonton Philippe with Fredo, and the female version....

What scares me is this: does this mean she's going to have my character? If so, I'm in trouble!

Sunday, April 15, 2007


We spent 8 days in Switzerland (well, 10 total, but we had a day of travelling on either end). Following is a play by play. Now we have to make it to CA and OH.

She's a great traveller, although we could have done without the re-routing, or the delay due to the Nor'easter in Newark.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Day 9: A day in Etoy with the Allegrini Clan

After a lazy morning in Yverdon, we spent our last day in Switzerland just hanging out with the family in Etoy. The weather was still gorgeous, so an apero in the garden was the order of the day.

We had a light meal back in Yverdon, but it was so warm inside, Angelina was sweating like crazy so we just took off her clothes. Then she was so much happier!

And then it was back to San Antonio on Sunday. None of us were too happy about that....

Friday, April 13, 2007

Day 8: Adventure Parc avec Le Familie Gloor

Friday the 13th

Friday was our day to spend with Frèdèric’s other goddaughter, Alba, the daughter of one of his childhood friends, Jean-David and Sonia, and sister of Gabriel. Alba is an amazing little 6 year old who can speak French and Spanish fluently. She knows I don’t speak French, but can manage a bit of Spanish so she very kindly speaks to me in Spanish. I think she thinks I know more than I do….

They took us to the Adventure Parc in Signal-de-Bougey. It’s this huge place for kids with a stunning view of Lac Leman. On one end are rope bridges and tree climbing things, which we avoided as the kids are a bit small for that. On the other is an area for the smaller kids with loads of fun things to do.

And for slightly bigger kids -

They also have a farm area with a horse, goats, rabbits, pigs, and likely some others we missed. There was a sow – bigger than I’d ever seen – with her 8 piglets less than a week old. We also saw a goat who’d just given birth, with its tiny baby struggling to get up. The place is enormous, and FREE, a rarity in Switzerland! It was a Friday and packed with kids (Easter holiday). I can’t imagine how many kids are there on the weekends. Oddly there were many American accents to be heard, perhaps due to it proximity to Geneva.

Angelina is usually a bear in the car, but Alba rode with us on the way home, and Angelina laughed the whole time. I asked Alba if she could drive with us everywhere!

We ended the day with raclette and wine at the Gloor home, a great spot overlooking the Orbe River.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Day 7: Bern back to Yverdon.

On Thursday we spent the morning shopping in Bern, then stopped at Fredo's storage place (a barn near Lac de Neuchetal) to find his photo albums. Then the scenic route back to Yverdon.

We spent the evening watching old home movies of Fredo and Philippe as kids. Seeing pictures of Fredo as a baby was amazing. I will post those separately, once I can get them scanned.

And then we have our little gourmand. She's not a picky eater, as she eats anything we give her (except bananas), but she is particular about the source. At home we make our own baby food, but for travel I figured we'd buy the jars. She took a few before we left ok, but once in CH she wanted nothing to do with them, and when she did eat some, she'd get constipated. She was no doubt thinking "the food is great here, why are you giving me this swill? What happened to the fresh stuff?" So we trekked down to Coop and got some fresh veggies, pureed, and presto! She ate 'em up. Finally I did manage to get her to eat one of the jars (I didn't want to toss them or cart them back to the US). It was the "spring vegetables." Fredo decided that she'll only eat what's in season. Already a food snob!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Days 5 & 6: Adventures in Bern

Frèdèric's meeting was at the Universität Bern. I was in Bern in 1992, and remember a wonderful city but recall more about my friend's tiny apartment: the kitchen was basically a closet. In any case, it was like visiting a new city for me. Given that I never knew when Angelina might melt down and/or need a nap, I didn't want to bother with museums and such, so we spent 2 days just wandering around the city. It helped that the weather was wonderful, only too hot for our winter clothes. The hotel had its heat on and we were roasting. I had to go buy some short sleeve t-shirts for me and short sleeve onesies for her. What was funny was people were walking around with winter coats and scarves! Granted it was cold in the morning, but still....Fredo says it's because it's April. In Switzerland in April, one wears a coat. Period.

It's a gorgeous city. Loads of wonderful buildings and statues in the middle of the squares and streets. Very easy to walk. Angelina seemed to have fun and I loved just being able to wander.

I never got around to taking any pictures while there, so I'll just post these of Angelina playing with Granpapa just before we left.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Day 4: Le Suchet

Le Suchet is Frèdèric's mountain. It holds a special place in his heart, like it does for most of the people around Orbe. Our wedding reception took place on its slopes. He couldn't wait to bring his daughter there, to make it 'her mountain' too. We couldn't get up in September, so as we had a few hours on Monday before leaving for Bern, we headed up for Angelina's first Swiss hike.

That cute face, we were soon to learn, was saying "I just had the biggest poop ever!"
Of course it doesn't happen at home, where there's spare clothes...and stupid me I was trying to use up the last of the smaller diapers that day. Alas, we managed to overcome and headed up the mountain:

It's easy now, with her Papa carrying her. Soon Little One you will be hiking it on your own legs but saying "Papa, carry me!"

We stopped just before the summit, as it was pretty windy and we were already late for lunch. So we sat for a few minutes to enjoy the beautiful Spring flowers.

Then it was lunch with Marcel and Josiane and off to Bern.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Day 3: Easter Sunday

After a lovely morning walk, we spent Easter Sunday with all Le Familie Allegrini and Richard, Fredo's Best Man enjoying Josiane's wonderful cooking and far too much wine. Angelina got to show off her Easter dress which she got from her Ohio cousin Olivia.

Cousin Megâne is always ready to spoil Angelina.

After a long day of fun.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Day 2: An outing with Les Families Ferrari et Brülhart

Fredo has two godchildren in CH, so we always make sure to save one day for each of their families. First off, let me say the weather was out of this world gorgeous, while it was all of 49F in San Antonio!

On Saturday we had a picnic with the family of goddaughter Coline. Also joining us was the family of Laurent, one of Fredo's childhood friends and the best baker in Switzerland (His shop is La P'tite Fringale in Vufflens-la-Ville).

Soon, Angelina will be able to run and play with the older kids. For now, she was content to have lots of attention from her friends. It was a fabulous day all around.

And of course the scenery could not be beat!

Friday, April 06, 2007

Day 1: Meeting her Swiss cousins for the second time

I think this time she might remember them: Megâne, Maël, and Gilles were quickly enamored of their baby cousin, keeping her constantly entertained. That's Maël underneath the flower, making her laugh.

Our World Traveler

Fredo had another meeting in Switzerland, so we decided to take Angelina to visit her Swiss Family. It was a short trip - only 8 days actually IN Switzerland, but well worth it. Of course, our trips are never simple. So our careful planning to find a one-stop trip from SAT-GVA (not an easy task) was blown out the window when our flight from SAT was delayed. So we got rerouted through Houston and Amsterdam. But they couldn't give us boarding passes for the AMS-GVA leg, so we had to stand in the looooong line at the transfer desk once we got to AMS to get boarding passes, making us nearly miss our flight. We made it,but instead of arriving at 7 am like we hoped, and have some time to rest before lunch, we arrived after 11am totally zonked out.
Fortunately, Angelina's a great traveler and quickly made friends with the other kids while waiting in Houston.

And she got far more sleep than Mommy and Papa, but I'm not complaining.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Our brilliant but lazy daughter

Ok, so "lazy" may not be the right word. Angelina is 9 months today and is not crawling. (btw - that means she's been outside of me as long as she was inside me!) Given her issues at birth, I'm always just a bit nervous about her developmental milestones. She wasn't rolling over until recently, then she just attacked it with a vengeance. She sits up fine,but started a little late (7 months).
She also seemed really skinny, not gaining a lot of weight. She eats solids, but until recently wasn't that interested, and otherwise she's breastfed (and takes minimal by bottle at daycare - she likes it from the tap, apparently).

We had her second appointment with the developmental pediatrician. This is a follow-up from the NICU. I was a little anxious, worried she was delayed in development and also that the nutritionist would push formula (she seemed incredulous last time that she was only nursing). His verdict? She's super smart, she just can't be bothered to crawl. She puts the rings on the stick, she stacks the blocks (or tries to) - things she shouldn't be doing for awhile. She watched him for a minute then did the same. But crawling? She just gets pissed off if we leave her there for too long. He suggested putting a pillow between her and the toy, making her crawl over it. What did she do? After getting annoyed, she shoved the pillow out of the way and scooted on her belly to the toy.

hey, that's my kid, she'll find a way to do it, but don't force her to do something she doesn't want to do!

As for the nutritionist, she wasn't too bad. Angelina's gained a lot of weight in the past couple of weeks, so she's doing fine.

Monday, April 02, 2007

We're trendy and old fashioned at the same time, Part II

Babywearing, it's the "newest" fad.

Everyone's doing it. Well, typically more affluent, educated families. It's all the rage these days. Here Fredo is showing off ring sling.

What cracks me up is these are what peasant women around the world have been using for centuries. I first saw them in Kenya: Kikuyu or Masai women using a large swath of cloth to carry their babies on their backs. In Thailand, all the Karen women used their sarongs. Having watched them, I was all prepared to use one of my many sarongs to carry my new baby. I wasn't going to be a fool and spent US$40 or more on a stupid piece of cloth. Hah! Once Angelina was born, and I learned that tying the bloody thing required an experienced person to teach me, I said to heck with it and bought The New Native Baby Carrier (it's that red thing you see in all my pictures holding Angelina) and never looked back. Best $40 I ever spent. I'm always having people come up to me to ask where I got "that really neat baby carrier." But please don't tell me I'm "wearing" my baby! She's not a fashion accessory. I'm just carrying her. Like centuries of women did before me.

I still have my wonderful sarongs. One day I'll learn to tie them properly. For now they work well as blankets.

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