22 July 2015

Nouryou Kai 2015

On Sunday, it was Reia's very first Nouryou Kai or Enjoy-the-Cool-Evening Summer Party at her youchien/kindergarten. She wore a blue yukata with a yellow sash and big flower clips in her hair. It was nice to see her in her school environment with her class mates and seeing her interact with the other kids. Everyone looked so cute in their outfits! Aila went dressed in her jinbei and had no problem blending in with the other older kids.

We went together with our Chinese neighbours in their car which saved us walking in the heat. There were dancing games, balloon yo-yos, prizes, shaved ice, chilled tomatoes, baked potatoes and dango. Everyone wanted shaved ice so the line was so long and they soon ran out of ice! Luckily, we got some before it closed. Aila, however, managed to drop her bowl right on the floor so we were only left with two, but that was enough.

Reia had been learning and practicing the bon dances at youchien for a couple of weeks and when everyone lined up and the music began, it was show time! She danced her little heart out and all the moves she had showed me at home all made sense with the music playing. She looked like she was having a great time!

The whole thing lasted 2 hours and then it was time to go home and have a bath! The girls were hot and bothered and went to bed quite quickly. They had a great time :D

Aila is Two

The day has finally arrived! Aila has now entered the "terrible two's" and most days prove the title right ;) We love her all the more for it!

Yesterday was a public holiday so Jun was off work and we got to spend the day together. Jun and I blew up balloons and put them all in the bathroom. Once they were all blown up, I hid Aila's present in the room and turned on some fans. The girls had to go inside the bathroom and find the present. They had a great time and wanted to stay in there instead of opening up the present! After finally being able to coax them out of there, she opened up her present which was a large Anpanman あいうろ Touch Tablet. Good for Reia to use too!

We decided to go to Sanrio Puroland to see Hello Kitty and her friends. It was such a hot day and after walking from the train station to Puroland, we were met with a VERY long waiting line to buy tickets. And not only did we have to wait in the hot sun to get to the front of the line, once we got to the front, we were told that we would have to come back in two hours to buy the tickets because there were simply just too many people inside. So we quickly cut our losses and changed our birthday plans. It wouldn't have been worth it anyway as we would still have had to buy a full day pass for 3 hours of waiting in queues to get on rides. Aila was fast asleep through the whole ordeal, but she didn't miss much.

We walked back the way we came and remembered we passed a movie theatre on the way, so we went inside to see what was playing. Pokemon: Hoopa and the Clash of Ages, Minions, and Inside Out were the only 3 eligible movies. There girls had already seen Minions and Inside Out, so Pokemon it was! Reia was pretty excited. Aila was just happy to be out of her pram. We still had time to kill so we went down to the arcade and played some games. The best one by FAR was the air hockey. This wasn't any ordinary air hockey, once a certain amount of points are gained or time elapses, about 50 other small pucks are released onto the rink and it becomes chaos! Aila was on my team and Reia on Jun's. Once those other pucks were released, we both forgot about the girls and went for it! Lol so much fun. Aila and I lost by about 10 points but that is ok. I wish they had that game everywhere!!

It was time for the movie and we went inside. For the first 20 minutes, Aila was fine. After that, she was a squirmy little worm that could not keep still. We were up in the back which was kinda good but kinda not good because the exit was near the front. I had to take her out eventually because she needed to go to the toilet, but that was only after I accidentally smacked the lady in front of me in the head because Aila screamed and made me jump (sigh). So I took her outside and she was having the time of her life running around, playing in the photo booth, eating popcorn off the chairs and trying to steal popcorn from strangers (more sighing). It's a good thing we didn't go back inside the theatre straight away because she asked to go toilet another two times. 30 minutes later, Jun and Reia run out to go toilet and we go back inside with them to catch the end of the story. Maybe in another year she well be able to sit still.

After the movies we decided to go home but stopped on the way to have dinner at Gusto and pick up Aila's Baskin Robbins Olaf ice cream cake. We walked home and I prepared the cake. As I was drawing on Olaf's arms and mouth, it was still really warm that he started to melt (like in the movie lol) and his eyes started to slide off his face! We quickly sang Happy Birthday and at the cake before he became a puddle of ice cream. Before bed, the girls had a great time with the dry ice that was in the box to keep the cake cool. After that, they were both so tired that they happily went to bed.

A lot of growth these past 6 months!
Here is what has happened since her last update:

Her vocabulary is growing now. She says "oichi (oishii)" when she's eating, "kanpai" when she's drinking and "etto" when she is thinking.

If she is trying to talk to me and I am replying but not looking at her, she will literally put her little hand on my cheek and will (forcefully) turn my face towards hers. She is actually doing it right now as I write this post! Guess I need to pay her more attention! In Reia's case, she will just tell me to "Look, Mummy! LOOK!"

She likes to dangle her legs off the stools at home. The chairs are still a bit too high for her but she loves to sit where we sit. She has taken a tumble off the chairs a few times but that doesn't deter her from getting back on that chair!

She likes to stick her fingers in her ears and then listen to people or herself talking. She'll then take them out to  hear the contrast. She also finds it soothing when I clean her ears with a q-tip. When she was recovering from a cold in NZ, she could only fall asleep if i stuck my pinky in her ear and wiggled it around gently. I think there was an inner itch she couldn't get to and it was soothing.

She runs to the front door when Daddy comes home with her arms outstretched, shouting "Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!" She then gets really silly. She squeals, runs around in circles, points and shows me him, says his name over and over. She really likes her Daddy.

When something funny happens, she looks to her big sister to see her reaction first and then will laugh together with her.

She wraps her little arms around me or puts her hands on my face and tries to lift me up when she wants to wake me up or eat something. She will take the line from Frozen and say "wake up, wake up, wake up!" like Ana does to Elsa.

She speaks slightly more Japanese at the moment. She says arigatou, dame, oishii, oishisou, yokatta, oide, iine, yada, gomennasai, tadaima, ikou, daijoubu, abunai, oshiri, takai, and sugoi. She also knows the correct reply after I say "here you go" or "douzo." She will say either "thank you" or "arigatou."

She tells herself off after doing something she's not supposed to by saying her name, "Aaaailaaa", in a disappointed way, or saying "Ah-choo!" which she learnt from an app on the iPad.

She is always taking the books off the shelves, the food out of the pantry, and the tea towels off the rack and throws them around the living room. These three "games" are way more interesting than anything in her overflowing toy box.

She answers yes/no questions with either "no-no" or "alright :)"

She goes to bed by herself now so easily. It used to be a struggle with crying and banging on the door, but now she just waves and says bye-bye and thats it! *Update* Now she will wait until Reia is asleep and run out to the living room to be with me. She usually falls asleep on the couch next to me.

She runs away and hides to do her business in private (in her nappy).

If I have my stern "mummy voice" on, she will smile sweetly at me and laugh it off like it's nothing. It makes it really hard for me to keep a straight face and is also slightly annoying that she does not fear me! lol!

When we were in NZ, her English improved so much. She is LOUD. Very loud! She sings and talks in this loud setting all day every day. She recently started saying "I can't do it!" I don't know who she got that from but she is always saying it when she's in distress.

She also says: so funny, are you ok?, mmm nummy, big hugs, alright, water (mo-tah), heavy, my turn (or Aila's turn), come on, hungry, bath time, let's go, shoes, sorry-sorry, are you ok? I'm ok, we did it, potty, sit down, go to bed, lie down, good girl, thank you, you're welcome, all finished, ice cream, rubbish, I like it, I don't like it, I found it, kawaii, hungry, milk, juice, bath time, outside, Daddy, Mummy, Aila, Reia, Opa, Oma, Aunty, cat, oshiri, bumbum, weewee, poopoo, ewww and a whole lot more. She can also ask simple questions like "Mummy, we going youchien?" She asks the same thing over and over again.

She went to nursery at my home ward in Auckland and it didn't take her long to settle down. She even sang a couple Japanese sings for the class without any hesitation. The other kids were looking at her like... "What is she saying?" She loves the songs sung (I like to Beat on My Drum, and Three Little Ducks) at the end of the day because she get an M&M! 

She is fearless and curious at the same time which can sometimes put her in tricky situations. No fear of heights leads to her jumping off of things, no fear of animals and bugs can potentially be dangerous. 

Her eczema flared up pretty bad when we were in NZ. I have never seen it that bad before but it spread to all over her legs, some on her arms and tummy, and spread to over one eye. I think maybe the dairy she ate had something to do with it.

She still has her bob that is now a long page-boy cut. 

She has started becoming territorial and finds it hard to share. 

We started potty training this week (6.15) and it's gone well! The first day I was a bit unsure if she was ready or not as my victory dance/song that I used when she was successful wasn't that effective. So on the second day I rewarded her with small raspberry licorice and she got really good at the end of that day. On day 3 she was a pro! I switched back to the victory dance/song and it worked better than the sweets. We went out twice with no nappy and no problems! She will say "poo-poo" when she needs to go for either and I will whisk her off to the potty and she's good! My victory song is a shortened version of the "We Did It" song from Dora the Explorer with a big spin at the end which she loves.

When we came back to Japan and met Daddy at the airport, Aila was over the moon and could not stop saying his name for about half an hour. She didn't leave his side and the excitement continued the next day when she woke up next to him. She was really excited to see him again.

She has already started saying the alphabet letter names! She likes to play Endless Alphabet on the iPad. Last night she surprised me by looking at the word "here" and saying "e! e! r! h!" I was just amazed that at age 1 she could point out the letters to the word with such confidence! (3.7.15) She is always pointing out letters thats she knows.

It has been a month since we started potty training Aila and she has almost completely got it down! She hasn't had an accident in ages and most nights wakes up dry.

When Reia comes home from youchien, Aila likes to take her uniform, bag and hat, dress up in it and pretend that she is going to youchien. She waves bye-bye, puts on shoes (any pair that is lying around), and waits at the door.

Speaking of doors, she can open them now! Things got slightly more hectic at nursery in Japan when she tried to escape one Sunday. And since coming back from New Zealand, she is now tall enough that she can open up all the doors throughout the house!

She stills laughs when I tell her off. And it still makes it very hard to keep a straight face!

She likes to wear dresses and will ask for "hula" or "dess" when she wants to wear one. She feels pretty in them and says "kawaii!" about herself.

She dances with her eyes closed to really feel the music lol

She will still slump onto the ground and throw her head back when she is told off or doesn't like something. She will sometimes hit her head on the hard floor when only increases the volume of her cries. She also rolls her eyes back to avoid eye contact.

She get's afraid of the "dinosaurs" in the dark hallway. I tell her to tell them to go away and she yells it at them and then runs back to me to hide.

She likes Anpanman, Bubble Guppies, Umi Zoomi, Youkai Watch, Octonauts and Dora the Explorer.

She is very touchy-feely and loves to smoosh her face up against mine, usually with her mouth wide open on my cheek. She will roll around on my lap until she is comfortable which can usually take a few minutes before she is satisfied. She climbs all over me, stands on my feet, jumps on my back, crawls on my lap. She kisses, licks and slobbers all over me. One time, she got right in my face, licked my cheek and said "oishii!" She always puckers up her lips and aims for a direct plant on mine. If I try to avoid her lips, she will grab my face and will make me kiss her properly. She is so cuddly and loves being kissed and cuddled.

Climbing on unsuspecting people's backs when they are lying down flat is a hobby of hers.

She us a curious girl and likes levers and switches and can do the same repetitive motion of turning or flipping them for a long time.

She is constantly alternating between crying and laughing. When she cries, she will laugh periodically and then go back to crying and vice versa. When she cries, she will throw her head back and will try walk around like that which is dangerous because she becomes unbalanced and topples over.

She mimics everything I say. She is always copying what she hears and still doesn't fully understand some things. However, she can understand a string of commands now like: close the door, close your eyes, eat your food, go to bed, get off the table etc.

She tries to jump now but can only get an inch off the ground. It is cute to see her so into it. When she get a bit of air time, she looks elated!

She likes to pretend she is a cat. She sticks her tongue out, pants, and says meow!

She can understand pretty much everything I say to her now. We have little conversations together.

She can count up to to 13 and can recognize some colours.

That is a huge difference in 6 months! She just keeps on learning and growing as kids do.
She is the cutest little girl and such fun to have around. Her laughter is infectious! Both Aila and Reia play well together and I can see the start of a eternal sisterly-bond.

We love you Aila. Happy 2nd Birthday!