2016 was a tough year for your Papa and me especially his health and his beloved dog, Happy. And you got sick at the end of year and the cold goes on till now. Cough, sneeze, fever, runny nose… It has been 4 days so far but the symptoms still doesn’t get better. This is our first time and your first time to deal with your sickness so we are trying to figure out what is the best for you. Antibiotics or no antibiotics for a toddler? Tylenol or no Tylenol for fever that is for 101 degree? Is saline spray working or giving him a sinus infection? Every friends who are parents tell us same thing: steam in the shower room, mist humidifier, saline spray with a snot sucker, elevating his head while he sleeps etc… we do everything what they tell us to do but we are not sure if it’s working… We are just hoping you will be better soon, very soon.
First Turkey (you were eating solid food last year. 🙂 )
With your big cousin, Crosby
It was a fun Thanksgiving dinner at your Papa’s friend (Dustin)’s house.
Luca: 19months old
Happy Thanksgiving! One of Papa’s friends invited us over to their dinner so we took an hour drive to get there and joined their dinner party. 🙂 His friend’s wife, Rachel cooks such great food so I was very looking forward to it.
Too bad I didn’t take enough photos of food (and Rachel) but they were super yummy.
I wanted to steal learn her recipe and cook them at home! Especially, her sweet potato ball!! I just can’t forget the flavor. It was soooo good.
I was also thankful that she cooked such huge meal. I have tried to cook a turkey before but oh boy, first of all, I didn’t know how to cook Turkey. Second of all, it took forever (4-5 hours) to cook. I love to cook and all but it was tiresome.
But I am glad you got to taste delicious food for the first time! 🙂
I finally was able to celebrate my birthday this year. Last year was a little chaos and we couldn’t celebrate so I was super happy to do this with my beloved family. Your papa took me a date at the nice French restaurant in Beverly Hills on the Saturday night, and you guys took me to the restaurant in Venice where I wanted to go for a long time on my actual birthday. Their food was super awesome and that made me so happy. I don’t need to receive any gift. Just taking me to a yummy place, that’s all I need. Haha
And after the lunch, we stopped by a park in Santa Monica and it was such a perfect day to get wet (even though it was in November!). When I see your excited smile, that makes me happy so I was happy that we were able to do that with your papa.
Thank you you two to make me feel so special and made my day. ❤️
Last weekend, Labor Day weekend was pretty much fun for Luca. I tried to take him out to different park 3 days in a row. Douglas Park, Colorado Park and Will Rogers Historical Park. It was his first time to visit Will Rogers and he had different experience compared to the other park. It had some horses and big polo field where he could run as much as he wanted to. They didn’t have any recreation part like swings or slides so that was bummer but they had sand field where he can play with his shovel.
I like to take him out to any park because I can get to participate to discover new things with him or try new things. He tried a slide few times per visit and he wasn’t able to sit down and slide at the beginning but now he knows how to sit and slides (he still needs to hold my heads though). I am so happy to witness his growth like this. ❤️😘😍
By the way, I used to not like Douglas Park because there are too many adults and kids everyday in the weekend. But I see why it’s so popular now. It’s gated, they got a lot of sand fields and also have various slides. For toddlers who barely start walking to big kids. I like it a lot now that I take Luca there almost every weekend.
It was nice and relaxing weekend for Papa and it was busy for mama but it was fun weekend. 😄
Parents I know from mommy and me class at Pump Station Santa Monica invited us for May and June Baby Birthday party at Douglas Park on Memorial Day. I was looking forward to seeing every moms and their babies how they are now. I expected to see those babies are already walking but they were still at crawling stage although every babies are different. I still thought if Luca meets other babies, he would get excited and play with them.
When I put Luca in the babies’ circle, it was completely different from my expectations. Luca took a glance at babies and just walked away. 1 year old babies don’t really play each other? Or it’s just Luca that he thought it wasn’t his crowd? I am not sure but he didn’t seem to be interested. As you can see at the 1st pic, he didn’t want to be in a circle. Lol Oh well, he got some free spirits, I guess. That’s ok too.
I was just happy that I got to see other moms and catch up a little. Some of the moms who has a boy goes through same thing as I do: boy throwing a tantrum, being aggressive when he is upset… When I see his anger, I tend to think, is it my fault? Did I or Papa show our anger at some point and he learned from us? The moms think same way as I do and I was glad to share that thought. I wasn’t alone I thought.
We stayed at my best friend from high school’s house until the end of our trip: 2 nights and 3 days. She has two sons: 13 and 7 years old. They both were such nice boys and enjoyed Luca’s company.
While I stayed there, I learned a lot how to build a good parent-child relationship through my friend. She is a Montessori based pre-school/kindergarten teacher as well as a mother. I know her since our high school and she has never changed how she is: kind, warm hearted, thoughtful, soft spoken person AND she is funny. I always enjoy her company and she is my must person to hang out when I go back to Japan. So this is a great learning opportunity for me to absorb how she deals with her sons especially when the children are cranky, or being forgetful about their homework and working on it a night before the due date when they had 2 weeks to work on. She always tries to understand their mind what they go through in their head even though she has her side to get mad or frustrated. I think it is tough to be like that when the things don’t go the way you were expecting to with your child. But I would like to keep reminding myself to listen my child what he has to say and I want him to know that I am always on his side.
Anyway, this 10 days trip was really really good trip for me and Luca. All of my family and friends were so happy to meet Luca and he gave a lot of happiness with his smile.
It didn’t hit me when we left Japan but it hit me hard when I was about to reach to the exit at LAX after the passport control and was about to see Luca’s papa. This great trip with Luca is about to be over! Actually it IS over! 😢😭😢
Well, we always have the next time. Hopefully next year? Hopefully with his Papa?
I will be always hopeful for Luca. 😄
Great trip, Luca. I don’t expect you to remember all of this trip. This blog has the purpose! You did fantastic and you were a great partner and you always will be! Till next time!!
Love you very much,
Addition: some people in Japan are so thoughtful to a mother and her child. Most of the times, I carried Luca in my carrier in trains or buses. They always offered me a seat. Even though I was tired and really wanted to take the opportunity and sit down, I got so much stuffs with me that I had to reject the offer. I wouldn’t know where to put those stuffs if I sit down! I felt bad to reject it though. Because I’m pretty sure they needed some guts to ask me.
Also, I read this somewhere that Japanese culture over all isn’t so friendly to mother and her child. There is no elevator to go upstairs or there is no lamp when you have a stroller. But actually that wasn’t true. The elevator was everywhere, nursing room and diaper change table were everywhere. I even saw the milk bottle warmer machines when they have a nursing room. I was impressed.
Japan generally concerns environment and they put extra effort to protect the nature what we have left. Individually, they bring their own handkerchief when they go to public bathroom, and they bring their own chopsticks. As a country, they invented a hybrid car to reduce exhaust emission.
As for trash, generally they started to divided recycled items from burnable trash from years ago and it used to be very simple. Like it was required to separate from glasses, and plastics.
The city I am from, Kamakura is one of the strict cities when you separate trash. And expensive.
The photo I added above is the schedule when you can throw what items. The schedule is very detail and confusing. For example, Monday and Thursday: burnable trash such as raw trash like veggie skin, fruits, fish, meat, leather, shoes, stationaries, CD etc. Tuesday: something you can not burn such as can, glass, metal, umbrella, dishes, cups. Once a month And burnable trash separately such as paper, newspapers, books, magazines, fabrics. Once a week. Wednesday: plastic bottles, plants. Once a week. And it goes on and on.
The rule: There is a booklet to guide you how to separate trash correctly. You have to buy specific bag to throw the trash and it costs 80 yen (75 cents) on each bag. You have to put your name on the bag so then the patrol can check and return your trash to you if you put something wrong item in it. If the weight of trash bag excesses the limit, you have to wait till the following week. 45 litter per bag.
The goal: I just made a quick research about the reason behind it. Every year, citizens of Kamakura produces 4 tons of trash every year. Their ultimate goal is “zero waste”. To get to close to the goal, they want to reduce it 1 ton less each year. The city wants every single citizen to be smart about waste and save resources if it’s possible. That’s why they are super strict about it.
I think the government needs to be THIS serious about wastes nowadays considering global warming. At the individual level, you need “motivation” to separate the trash in this much details. If we have this rule in United States or even starting it small, in Los Angeles, can we do this? There are a lot of people concern the environment so it is possible. However, we do need some “education” to follow this rule and it is a big commitment.