Tis the Season...

...for some volleyball!

This weekend was the first tournament for the HPA boys team down at Kealakehe HS in Kona. HPA didnt do super awesome (got eliminated in the first round of tournament play) but got some good practice for the upcoming season.

Mr A enjoyed the coaching and Ikaika and I enjoyed the watching. We had a little scare on Friday night as our friend Heidi was holding him and he just started shrieking! I was thinking 'oh god no! dont let it be that my child suddenly cant be held by strangers. please let it be anything but that!" But everythings cool now. Heidi held him on Saturday and he was just cruizin, everything was good. Maybe he was just tired Friday night.

Tonight we tried a little experiment. Ive been letting Ikaika direct the pace of his own introduction to solids. Yesterday he grabbed at a slice of pizza I was holding so I was curious if that meant he had interest in food now. I sat him up in his stroller tonight and put some breastmilk on a baby spoon. Not only did he not enjoy the sensation of the spoon (the face was hilarious however), he diplayed no desire for the milk or the spoon (he didnt viciously attack the spoon the same way he attacked the boob when he was first born), and he had no clue what to do with the milk so it ended up just running down his chin with the rest of the drool. Ill take that as his way of saying, "nope, not ready yet. pass the boob please."


My Lil Sweetums

Give the kid some teeth and eyebrows and the resemblance is uncanny!

Charmed, Im sure

My Lenten promise is to give up the agenda pushing on Ickey's baby blog and start blogging about the baby. Here goes...

Happy on the potty. I honestly didnt help the hair at all - it was just like that.

I will once again say, for the record, that Ikaika is a "happy baby". Of course he has his moments, some days he has more moments than others, but overall he's just a happy little guy. Whenever Im out in public with him, no matter where the location, someone will inevitably comment on how "striking" his eyes are or come up to him and smile, coo, whatever. As if on cue, this kid will start smiling and cracking up and laughing. Its adorable! He's happy at home too (today, for example, he kept himself occupied for almost an hour inspecting/talking to the rug) but he really puts on a show in public. I appreciate his efforts.

Here he is, once again, entertaining himself by trying to somehow apprehend the physio-ball. He just kept pushing it away and it would roll back and bop him in the face and he would scream laughing. Too cute.

Mr A (and dozens of other people) continually describes Ikaika as being "a charmer" or "very charming".

And suddenly, as if by magic, my parents rule about "no boys in rooms that have doors" makes perfect sense...


Having the Time means Making the Time

I hear from people all the time, "oh Id love to knit/crochet/bake a loaf of bread, but I just dont have the time".

Let me tell you a story about time.

When I was in Japan, Okinawa to be more precise, I spent the last 7 hours of my trip with my two friends, Chris and Max. In between the World War II Memorial and the ramen shop, we were driving around in the rental car and Chris and Max were engaged in a lively conversation about some video game. Both of these guys had managed to not only beat the game but also knew where the secret stuff was and what games it could easily be compared too (meaning that they would have to be equally familiar with all the games they were referencing).
Both Max and Chris are fluent in at least one other language. Both have GPAs that put me to shame. Both have read a library worth of books (which is where the conversation had been the day before) and, to boot, both could have been described as notorious in their ability to consume alcoholic beverages while still being wickedly entertaining (dare I say it: party animals?)

So whats the deal? Here I was in the back of this rental car, listening to this conversation and I just had to say it, "how in the world did you two find the time to play all these damn video games?!"
I believe it was Max who looked at me and coolly stated (as if it was so simple he was worried he would offend me by answering) "Time management, my dear."

So in light of my current situation, I would like to raise a glass to time management. The truth is, with excellent time management, you can pretty much do anything and everything that you want, despite your situation. In fact, its a well known truth that busy people get things done. So the less time you have, the better!

Moral of this story is that if these guys can maintain a 4.0, learn multiple languages, party like its going out of style and STILL find time to do normal loser-guy things like play video games...
I can find time to knit.


Kanikapila - Ickey Style

Lead vocals and interpretive dancing: Ikaika

backup vocals and ukulele: Mr A

Crawling Progress

Heres the latest in the crawling saga. The matress is no longer a safe haven for hanging out because I took my eyes off him the other day and when I looked back he was half on/half off (leg and arm hanging over the edge - very cute stuff - but I was too worried about him falling to take the time to find my camera). The only thing that seems to be standing in his way at this point is getting his upper torso up off the floor at the same time as his feet. As it is now, he looks like a bucking bronco!

Also, since he is 4 months today, I have the official height/weight update:

26" tall and 18lbs 2oz! Hes up in the 97%-ish range! Way to grow, man!



Oh man, Mr A and I just battled the GROSSEST LARGEST most PUKE INDUCING spider I have ever encountered during my short lifetime.
Hawaii wins the award for Most Disgusting Insects.

It was like a small animal. No one here is fond of spiders and I have to admit that we both put on the girly pants when that thing made an appearance. Ultimately Mr A did the killing (shooting him from a distance with the bottle of germicide) and I ran and got the camera so I could do what I am doing now (blogging about it).

Holy frijoles can those bad boys run!

It took awhile to decide the game plan. You only really get one chance and you dont want any 8 legged thing of that size to escape. A spray of G is only going to tickle something that massive, so do we just unscrew the cap and dump the whole bottle on him or do we smoosh him with a book or what?

We ended up chasing him down with the spray bottle (everything in my closet is now both soaking wet and germ free) and for a moment lost him during the fray. It was a horrible moment, imagining this really huge and really pissed off spider seeking out his revenge in the night.

But we were victorious. You can see that even though he is dead and shriveled up, hes still a mighty mouthful by anyones standard. Sick. So so sick. Now I really want a bed thats raised up off the floor.

Girls Basketball - What a Snore!

On Valentines Day, we celebrated like only The Arrayan's can - we went to watch the BIIF girls high school state basketball championship!

I whispered to Mr A when we first walked in the gym, "you know, we dont have any kids in high school so I think people are going to start wondering why we are hanging out at all the games..." The answer is, of course, that we like sports and since Hawaii doesnt have any professional sports to follow, high school is about as close as you can get.

Luckily, Mr A just accepted a position as assistant coach for the HPA boys varsity volleyball team (woohoo! go makanis!!!) so we could throw some weight around and say we were just there supporting the school.

Here is our child, suffering the indignities of being small.

The games went down at Hawaii Prep. Division II was Hawaii Prep vs Kamehameha (Kam won) and Div I was Waiakea vs Konawaena. I dont normally care for girls basketball, but that game was awesome! Kona smoked 'em - I think the final score was like 40 points difference, but amazingly, it was a great game to watch! It didnt feel like you were watching a blow out. Kona had two freshman starters and one was reminiscent of Lady Michael Jordan! She did a pump fake under the basket that brought Mr A to his feet! To be fair, Waiakea were major underdogs with two players barely at 5' high! But one of their seniors (probably 5'6") has accepted a full ride to Idaho for bball so I guess they werent totally unequipped.

The highlight of the evening was watching the awards ceremonies because I got a chance to scope out all the different leis that people are making. Ive decided that complex ribbon and crochet leis are for super special occasions only. Ditto for flower leis because they are expensive. But candy leis are perfect for any occasion and they are so versatile! I like the simple ribbon leis or even money leis. There are also a lot of other options for simple but striking leis that are good for either everyday events worth celebrating or occasions that call for making more than five leis (like team sports type stuff).


Ikaika has been extending the uses of his feet lately. He will grab things with his feet (like my arm or a toy) or play with his feet when his hands get boring. He can make a sound that sounds like "dadadada" or "mamimamima" but hes just babbling, the enunciation isnt quite there on the consonants and Im sure hes not saying it with any sort of identifying intentions. But we are getting closer. We just got a rug yesterday courtesy of Granny and Grandpa so hopefully crawling will start picking up steam in the near future. Either that or hes going to get some mean raspberries on his face and knees - only time will tell.


Happy Valentines Day!

Its Valentines Day, the day of love!

Its the anniversary of the day Mr and I found out we were having our little love child. Our son is so sweet that for V-day he got us the gift of sleeping almost 7.5 hours straight last night! What a doll!

I used to really dislike Valentines Day. Not because I never had a boyfriend or never got chocolate or anything like that. I said it was because Vday was "commercialized", which is so trite I can hardly stand to admit that I said it! I dont know why I didnt like Valentines. Maybe because it seemed contrived, like we were all just celebrating love for the sake of not being left out.

But now I have seen the light. Love celebrated for any sake is still love and its still great. If my coworkers (back when I had those) give me a candy or a flower or a homemade card just to tell me that they think of me enough to extend that gesture, shouldnt that be enough to make me feel the warm fuzzies so characteristic of our Valentines Day fantasies? Why would I want to be so crabby as to reject someones affections, irregardless of whether it comes on Feb 14 or any other day of the year?

If Mr A makes me french toast for breakfast, kisses me, and tells me how much he loves me - shouldnt I be satisfied with how much love there is in my life instead of thinking "oh you are only doing this because its Valentines Day"? Any day I get breakfast in bed is a great day, why should I worry about what day it happens to come on?

Valentines day is an opportunity for us to take time out of our lives and think about or do something special for the people we love. Its an opportunity for us to do something, anything, to show gratitude for the love we have in our lives every day of the year. What could possibly be wrong with that?

Sure, it would be nice if we all took time once a month or, better yet, everyday to do this independently of a holiday. But thats no reason to reject the holiday itself. In fact, that attitude gives all the more reason to revel in Valentines Day and celebrate what it stands for!

Maybe what I disliked about Valentines was people who were hurt by not having a boy/girlfriend to share it with, people who were hurt about not getting flowers or dinner, people who are hurt or sad because their special person "forgot" about them. I think the day sets an expectation for some and if that expectation isnt met then Vday becomes this huge source of angst instead of a lighthearted celebration of the good things we have in life.

Ok, revision: I like Valentines Day. I dislike Valentines Day expectations.

Now I need to go and eat my french toast.

Whos kid is that?!

This boy here looks like he belongs to my aunt.

But this boy clearly belongs to me because

1) hes a huge monster of a child
2) not a single thing hes wearing matches
3) hes out late at night even though its cold and hes an infant
4) hes with "my people"


Wax Figure

Last night/this morning I was trying to make a sugar wax so I could wax my legs. Its sugar, tea, lemon juice and water. I tried FOREVER to get this thing right and I kept adding more sugar and it was just getting worse by the hour. I should have known the project was doomed when it was taking hours.
Finally, when I thought I might have gotten the wax sort of right, I spread it on my now very hairy leg and put a cloth strip on top and thought "this might just work". I ripped it like I was counting on something and it just flopped right off. No stick, no nothing. So lame. Sigh.

I ended up making oatmeal cookies with the "wax" so it wasnt a total bust.

In baby news, Ikaika has been sort of semi sitting up lately. No new breakthroughs in the crawling department. This shirt looks horrible on him and he clearly needs a bath, but its still cute when hes romancing his toys.


Almost there, Little Buddy!

Last night we were playing with Ikaika on the floor (we really need to get a little area rug or something - we had him on this blanket but Mr A and I had to hold the opposite corners taut so Ikaika wouldnt just gather the whole thing under him) and he stuck his little okole up in the air! He pushed up on his knees and his butt went skyward. His face, however, went straight into the blanket.

We now have all the components of a crawl: rolling over, alternating movement from both the arms and the legs, ability to hold head up with arms, ability to support butt with knees, and the unquenchable thirst for more toys...

He just needs to figure out how to put 'em all together and Ikaika Arrayan will be crawling! I have a feeling its not too far off in our future.


Milestones! We have milestones!

In the past few days weve had a lot of "firsts". Was it truly the very first time these things happened? Thats hard to say. A lot of this development stuff is a process and the process begins with something small and builds slowly day by day. But the baby book wants me to give dates for "firsts" so I have to assign certain days to certain things. Usually Ill count it as a first if its executed in a manner that would lead me to believe he always could do it and just chose not to before that moment.

We have rolling over, which you can tell Im surprised I so easily caught on video. Yesterday was really the first day that rolling was performed with this kind of speed and frequency. Weve had variations of rolling since shortly after birth but nothing that demonstrated this kind of consistency.

(please ignore my rude snapping)

Ikaika is not a one trick pony. He also can stand with help. This began as "pushing off" (like when he is crouching in your lap he will straighten his legs and sort of bounce up) and has progressed to what I would consider bonefide standing with assistance. He will stand for a few seconds and then a knee will buckle and he will crash, but its still assisted standing. Mr A worries this will cause him to be bow legged so we havent encouraged standing as much.

He has discovered his toes. I was ECing him yesterday morning and he just popped his feet in his mouth. This was fine at the moment but when we were done and I put him back down, he was really upset that the feet were gone. So later, during Baby Einstien (I know, I know...but we had to put away groceries) we noticed that he was going after his feet with the renewed vigor of a boy who understands that toes are fun. This video isnt quite as thrilling as the last one, but the frustrated sigh at the end is really cute.

Finally, he has discovered his "junk". Last night, during a diaper change, my baby grabbed his lil alas. Mr A was delighted. I have never seen a man beam with such pride. He ran around the apartment chanting "I love having a son!" and insisted that I blog about this momentous event. It reminded me of something my midwife told me, "once they find 'em, its a lifelong, unbreakable bond". Gross. I dont get it. Must be a guy thing.


Sophie the Giraffe

Introducing Ikaikas new BFF, Sophie the Giraffe.

My freshman year college roommate got this for me when she was spending the summer in France with her family (as a French person, not a tourist - thats an important distinction in these parts). Merci beaucoup, Melodie!

As it was explained to me, Sophie is the must-have of every French bebe. She went on the market way back in 1961 and continues to be a hit today. Shes made of 100% natural rubber from the sap of the rubber tree. Shes painted with edible paint and her 7in frame "is perfectly adapted for babies". Sophie squeaks. Shes also machine washable - but I dont have a machine so shes going to be hand washed in this house.

As a parent, I give Sophie two enthusiastic thumbs up. If Ikaika doesnt eat her alive or rip her rubber head off, Im definitely keeping her around and passing her along to any siblings, nieces, or nephews.

Post Baby Body Issues

I should have titled this post "...every BODY gets 'em" or something like that.

Post baby body issues are almost as sure to come with babies as dirty diapers and nighttime feedings (and about as welcome, too). I told myself that I wouldnt spend the rest of my life whining about my body when my body isnt all that bad (what would be considered that bad?) I also told myself that I wouldnt be one of those people who just complains about their body while eating a piece of chocolate cake and drinking a Guinness. But here we are...

I have a few issues with what going on with my body right now and I feel like I have no right to complain about any of it since Im not doing a damn thing about it. Lets start with the issues.

For starters, the stretch marks. Although not as bad as some, they are still there and visible. They are only exacerbated by tanning and they are located just as to peek out from my bathing suit in the most inappropriate fashion, drawing the eyes to where most eyes dont belong. They are, from my research, impossible to get rid of (although they will fade over time, whoop-a-dee-doo) and just the fact that they are there is a testament to my total lack of self control during the last months of my pregnancy. I think I was counting on delivering early (which I didnt end up doing). If I had realized then how much these stupid stretch marks would bother me, I probably would have been a little more diligent about gaining a reasonable amount of weight and slathering myself with oils, etc. I was trying to rely solely on my good fortune and genetics, neither of which came through for me.

Next is the loose belly skin, or as I like to call it, gut jowls. Even though Ive watched every episode of The Biggest Loser, I was still counting on my skin just snapping back into place after delivery. Big shocker - didnt happen. My diligent workouts during pregnancy resulted in my abdominal muscles remaining in great shape. I have excellent muscle tone in my abs. Unfortunately, no one would know that because I have a skin curtain flopping over my stomach. Sigh. This part bothers me the most because I keep asking Mr A how to get rid of it and he always says the same thing, "eliminate the sweets"...

...which brings me to the final issue. I am one of those people who would rather sit around and complain about it than do anything to actually fix it! I find these people to be completely reprehensible and yet, here I am, BLOGGING about this rather than getting my jiggly ass onto a treadmill and doing something about it! Mr A keeps telling me to "eliminate the sweets" and this is the same answer he has given me for the last three and a half months. Somehow I keep coming up with reasons and excuses why that wont work instead of just doing it and then saying it didnt work. Notice the subtle difference? I have become that person who is rationalizing their own terrible situation instead of acknowledging it and working through it.
Could I regain my six (ok, four) pack? Brooke Burke did it and she had FOUR kids! Could that skin eventually snap back into place? I dont see why not, unless my body really does defy biophysics and its not just "all in my head".
But if I continue down the path Im strolling along now - the path of its worth complaining about but not worth giving up Chantilly Cake for - Im going to be thirty five and have kids, love handles, stretch marks, saggy boobs (I didnt even touch on that one because Im not sure how they will recover after I wean him) and a load of resentment to go along with it.

Im not trying to nosedive into the fountain of youth here. I realize that I just had a baby and whatever my body looks like, he is well worth the price. Im excited about aging and changing and I dont want to look seventeen for the rest of my life. Im just annoyed at how post baby body has brought out the slacker in me. Its brought out this complainy side of me that makes excuses. I need to dig deep and get the motivation to eat right and exercise. Both. At the same time. Because it seems that getting back into the shape I want to be in is going to require actual work.