Monday, September 24, 2007


chibiguri @ Two

chibiguri turned two years old yesterday. We had a party for him on Saturday, inviting a number of our friends and their families to come help celebrate this major milestone in chibiguri's life. Since chibiguri is allergic to eggs, wheat and peanuts, we had to ensure that the cake was entirely without these substances, but amaguri was able to use jello to create a masterpiece that both looked and tasted quite delicious. And equally fortunately, the weather also decided to cooperate. Although the skies were threatening through much of the morning, the rain ceased and the backyard dried out enough to allow us to put out the outdoor toys for the kids who attended.

chibiguri was quite funny. He was very excited as we decorated in preparation for the party, which entailed putting up balloons, pushing the furniture against the walls and hanging streamers. Once the guests began to arrive, he was initially very shy as his home was invaded by a large number of children and their parfents. However, once he realized that the day was in his honor, he entered into the spriti of the occasion, including having 'Happy Birthday' sung to him by the assembled guests. He was very pleased with himself, and I think he understood the significance of the day, unlike last year, when he was mostly noncomprehending.

My sister was a huge help, watching chibiguri while amaguri and I dealt with the cooking and the general tasks associated with hosting a gatherinbg such as this. However, all the guests and the children were extremely well-behaved and overasll it was a very good day for all.

On the Sunday, we took chibiguri to my brother-in-law's ranch north of San Fracnisco and he was able to see his vfavorite animals- cows and horses. We also flew his big kite a bit and enjoyed the leftover food from the previous day's barbeque. All in all it was a very enjoyable weekend, and I think chibiguri had a wonderful time. A truly fitting event for his second birthday. Thanks to all who attended and helped to make it such a wonderful day for him.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


Vocabulary & Music

chibiguri is at last increasing his vocabulary. Besides his favorites (cow, horse), he has begun to learn several other new words. As we were reading last night, he was able to say 'pig'and 'sheep'. He has not yet mastered 'dog', but he knows what one is- both in Japanese and in English. We can point to a dog and say 'inu doko', or 'where is the dog', and he correctly points. He also has begun expanding his vocabulary in other directions. While he has steadfasstly refused to say 'train', he is very good at 'choo-choo'.

In addition, chibiguri has at last managed to make sounds on one of my horns. I received a little baritone, or possibly alto horn from a friend (it was his father's, who recently passed away) and I was playing it last night. I offered it to chibiguri, and showed him how to blow, and he was able to make distinct sounds on it. I was quite pleased wiuth him, and he was able to make both a a semi-high note and a lower note. He is a long way from being able to play, but he has clearly made a start.

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Friday, September 14, 2007



I was at as friend's place over the weekend, since my friend wanted to give little chibiguri an early birthday present. My friend, henceforth known as Joshi, had a little cardio machine in her apartment. One would think that chibiguri, at not even two, would have been intimidated by the exercise machine. One would be completely mistaken.

chibiguri has discovered an affinity for exercise equipment. At a friend's barbeque a couple of weeks presviously, chibiguri was attached to the resident treadmill, and it was only with great difficulty that we persauded him to loosen his grip and accompany us home. At Joshi's apartment, chibiguri was fascinateed by the machine as soon as fully wakened, and he soon discovered how to use it. i hope to have pictures posted soon to show how immensely chibiguri enjoyed the cardio machine.

I dread the day when chibiguri is old enough that we have to break down and get him something similar, though the jungle gym mentioned in my previous post will undoubtedly suffice for the nonce.



Sleeping Revisited

Well, we have moved chibiguri's bed into his own room, thus creating more space for his mother and me in the main bed. While he still needs to be in with us to actually go to sleep, once he drops off, we have fopund that he is quite amenable to being moved. We deliberately left a break in one side of his crib to allow hiom to climb down by himself if he wakes during the night and needs company. But....

chibiguri has developed a bad habit of waking in the night and then needing parental companionship in order to go back to sleep. The typical process is thus:

1. chibiguri starts to complain, though he reamins asleep
2., This complaining wakes amaguri and me. (This usually occurs around 2 or 3 in the morning)
3. chibiguri wakes, and toddles into our room, where he insists that he needs to occurpy the majority of our bed
4. chibiguri goes to sleep, but we are too tired to remove him to his own bed (especailly on work nights) and we all0ow him to remain
5. chibiguri rearranges himself to be horizontal, thus decreasing the amount of space that his mother and I can occupy. he also has developed the habit of kicking in order to clear up space for himself.
6. chibiguri sleeps. We don't.

So the upshot is that our brilliant plan of moving chibiguri's bed to his own room did not exactly ease our own slepping situation. I look forward to the day when chibiguri is able to go to slepp and remain in hios own bed.

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Jungle Gym

chibiguri's second birthday is coming up fast, and so it became time to go shopping for birthday presents. Rule Number One is- when shopping for presents, taking the presentee with one is an extremely bad idea! However, as it was a weekend and daycare was not available, Amaguri and I took chibiguri with us to the local Toys R Us to look for a suitable birthday present.

i had initially thought that a pedal car would be a good choice, but since his aunt was kind enough to get him a tricycle, we made a small change. As has been noted here on this blog, chibiguri is quite the climber, and he loves to be physically active. Therefroe, we deteremined that a jungle gym might be a good choice. Unfortunately, our backyard, like so many Bay Area domiciles, is approximately the same size as a typical mouse run, making the larger sets impossible.

As chibiguri's wonderful Aunt had also mentioned the possibility of a jungle gym, we called her on the phone and spoke to her regarding the possibility of splitting the cost of a set with us. She was delighted to do so, and we chose a set we thought would be suitable. One problem- getting it home taxed the carrying capacities of our not-so-large vehicles to the utmost. However, we did succeeed and set it up that very evening.

The set is the Little Tykes Double-Decker and chibiguri loves it. He has already discovered the joys of the slide, and he also has tried every possible climbing method associated with the set. Now our only concern is that he occasionally wants his mother and me to accompany him on his slide and climbing forays. As the set is not designed for the weight of such as we, this occasionally creates a problem, though he usually is content to have us walk beside him as he does the actual climbing and sliding!

This is good for us, as it makes it somewhat easier to tire him out, making bath and bed slightly less strenuous. I highly receommend jungle gyms for almost-two year old boys. In my next post, I will talk about the preparations for his party.

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Friday, September 07, 2007


The Terrible Twos

Wll, it seems that chibiguri has finally enterd the dreaded Terrible Twos- though his entrance comes a little earlier than I had hoped. Just a few weeks shy of his second birthday, chibiguri has begun using the word 'no' and 'mine' more and more. His wishes to possess things not belonging to him have surfaced as he attemtps to wrest my keys, cell phone and various musical instruments from me, even when i am clearly in the process of using them! He also is much more open about using the word 'no' to respond to requests from me and from his mother.

However, the most worrying behavioral symptom is that he has become prone to throwing temper tantrums when he does not get his own way. This is new behavior, and he is even doing this at the day-care provider, where he was heretofore considered a very exceptional child- never causing problems.

There are soem postiive signs as well, though. he will give things back when requested, and he still shows politeness in most areas. So we can hope that this new temper is merely part of the two-year-old process and is not soimething that will persist once he passes this necessary stage.

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