Joaquin's Rare (Blogpost) Snapshot

Monday, September 17, 2012

Compared to my first born, I really don't write much about him. I don't take many pictures of him. Such is the plight of the subsequently born. Poor thing. 

Okay, I do try to take photos and video of him, but he tends to run towards the camera. Makes for every shot ending up the same. 

Anyway, he is now 2.5 years old. We enjoy the heck out of him. He definitely has his trying days, but in general, he is a ridiculous amount of fun. Sofia and him, they really get along. I can't complain. For the fact that they are two years apart and different genders, it's quite a miracle. Gonz and him have been bonding really well lately. I find that children bond easily to their mothers, but bonding to their fathers take intentionality and work. Joaquin will let Gonz take him to sleep – whereas at his age, Sofia wouldn't have anyone but me. I'm extremely happy about this. 

What is he up to these days?

He doesn't really talk. Okay, fine. He is starting to talk. He'll put a couple of words together know to form his version of a sentence, and most of the time we know what he wants. This has been interesting for us as a family because Sofia was talking in PARAGRAPHS already by the time she was two and half. I know it's bad to compare your children, but I didn't say this was a competition. It's just...interesting. 

He's into his Lego. He is starting to be able to put the pieces together. He can work the puzzle app on my iPhone (My First Puzzles). Train sets. Looking at books. He loves dancing with and chasing his sister. One day I hope to capture a good shot of him dancing. 

This past summer, while in my cousin's pool (and wearing a floatation device), he figured out how to keep his head above the water and started swimming around. He sure drank a TON OF POOL WATER for the first few tries, but I couldn't believe how confident he was in the water. Especially since last summer, he HATED the pool. So glad he has changed his mind about that!

Picky. But a weird picky. Like, he won't eat grilled cheese sandwiches, but he'll have Thai Red Curry Chicken. I don't know. I can't guess what he'll like, so I should just remember to let him try it all. 

He is potty-trained. About a month ago, I noted that he was waking up dry for a few weeks and I thought, let's just go for this. My method of potty-training is downright just dirty. It's the fastest way. With Sofia I waffled between underwear and Pull-Ups. When someone told me that Pull-Ups and other fake-y underwear-diaper hybrids just prolonged potty-training, I said FORGET THAT. And when I did, there were more messes but potty-training was usually complete in something like a week. And with Joaquin that was true. During the process, I was still putting Joaquin in diapers at night, just in case, until one night, I went to do the same, he pushed my hand away gently and said "no", and pointed to his pyjama pants. I thought, okay, well, let's just go for it. Since then he hasn't wet the bed not even once. And while we have had a few accidents during the day, I cannot complain, He is doing great. 

We had a great time with our little family this past summer. I never got around to writing a post about our holidays, but we took two weeks out and just drove around the United States visiting my side of the family. It was fantastic. It's no lie when people tell you that kids grow up fast. I have a 4.5 and a 2.5 year old. Whenever I just step back I can't believe that they are that big already. I am trying to always remind myself that if I don't stop to take a a good look at my kids regularly, they'll be grown and leaving me before I know it. I am learning to be grateful for every day that they are with me, even if they have been an exhausting day. They are such a gift and they teach me so much every day. 

Home Improving

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Today I took on my first home improvement project.
My garage needed a facelift. Should be fairly simple, right? After all, it's just paint.

My sister offered to help me out, which I gladly accepted. The thought of me taking this one on while my two children ran circles around me is always enough to make my palms sweat. So, we started this morning at 10:30, chip, chip, chipping the paint away; the prep work before the fun of painting gets started.

The interesting thing about chipping paint away is finding out what is underneath. We found an ORANGE layer, and even a green layer. But the craziest thing is the wood grain "sticker" layer that we suppose was the original look of the garage. Yes. A metal garage door that had a HUGE sticker on it to make it look like wood. 

After all, it was the seventies.

I took the above picture because it was getting depressing. We had been chipping for over two hours and I felt like that we weren't making much headway, so I wanted a photo to show myself that after another hour, we did make some progress. I did have enough sense to give up on the idea of painting today. There was too much prep work still yet to be done. And I knew that if we didn't spend the time to prepare the surface properly, we shouldn't bother at all. 

Then, my dad came home. (He was at choir rehearsal). 
The three of us really made some real progress. Especially when my dad got the idea to get his butane torch out to heat the left over "sticker" parts – which worked, but a little scary. (My dad loves to find ways to work this torch into any project). 

Another couple of hours, we arrived at this:

So, hopefully I get to paint tomorrow. I will be, however, all by myself with my kids, so if I don't get much done, I will have to accept this. I hope to post the final product soon – I hope!

While this is just painting the garage, I really procrastinated on it 'cause I am frankly a little bit scared of home improvement projects. Both my husband and I came from families who were renters so we didn't come pre-loaded with home improvement and renovation knowledge. It is extremely foreign to me. But I am telling myself this:
  1. I can learn this too. 
  2. I have friends and family who I can ask for advice. 
  3. Just get it done.
I have learned everything at work from zero. I never cooked before I got married. So what if I had never built anything before I owned a house? This cannot be impossible. I look forward to the day that I am extremely comfortable with doing this kind of thing (and much, much more complex things) in the near future!