Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Babbling Sloane

video
This is just sampling of what Sloane has been doing lately. She may sound cute, but after 2 hours straight it can get a little obnoxious. For now, though, we still dig it. That is Grace's dad laughing in the background.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Chinese New Year

Today, January 26th, is Chinese New Year. We went to the university's Chinese student presentation/performance to eat and check out the festivities. This is Sloane in her best Chinese New Year outfit: red bow, red coat, red dress. The coming year is the year of the Ox, so that means Sloane was born in the year of the Rat, which on the surface seems unfortunate; however, those born in the year of the Rat are often charismatic leaders. The Rat is the first sign of the twelve animal zodiac calendrical system and Rat people therefore are naturally endowed with intelligence and tenacity. The opposite of Rat, if there is such a thing, is Pig, better known in my family as Pig-dog or Swine. It is last of the twelve. Pig people, in addition to carrying the dubious distinction of a porcine demeanor, are notoriously lazy and belligerent, though there are those who break the mold.

This is a small version of a Beijing Opera mask. All of the little kids got these presents.

Sloane with professors Terry and Faye Kleeman.

On Chinese New Year's eve, Chu Xi, parents or older family members usually give red enevlopes filled with cash to younger children. You cannot give just any amount of money. If the first number in the total amount given is an odd number, as in 100 dollars, then this sum is inappropriate. These sums are traditionally presented at funerals and are placed in white envelopes. Red envelopes given during Chinese New Year must contain even numbers, like 200, 600, etc. For Sloane this was just another thing that she could chew on.

The cash inside must have a sour taste.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Rilakkuma

Thanks to Kaori for giving Sloane this stuffed animal. It is a lazy bear queen called Rilakkuma. She also has a king penguin stuffed in her shorts.
Sloane was a little suspicious of it at first. She started to warm up to the Rilakkuma after a few minutes and she really likes it now.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Martin Luther King Day Outing

Grace decided we should go and do some outdoor activities. On holidays we usually just sleep in really late and when we finally decide to leave the house it is already getting dark. Today was different. We did some research the night before and scouted out a hike that we could handle. There are choke hikes in Boulder so finding a trailhead is not very difficult. The problem for us is that we NEVER hike, so we needed one for novices. Another problem with living in Boulder is that there really are no novices in the town except for me and Grace. Everybody is in the midst of training for something--whether it be a marathon, a triathlon, or some other type of unreasonable physical activity.
There is some public land in Boulder called Chatauqua Park where we decided on The Enchanted Mesa trail that eventually leads above NCAR, or the National Center for Atmospheric Research, one of Boulder's many claims to fame. We figured we could at least look the part of true Boulderites by outfitting Sloane in the latest contraption designed for families on-the-go (a demographic that we hope to be a part of someday): the Kelty Carrier. Our friend hooked us up with this device and it is pretty fun. We felt like with fit right in with all of the other hikers.
We got an early start. It looks like both Lance and Sloane are overjoyed to be out here.
Grace even got decked out in her exercise clothes. It has been a while since we've seen these.
We are missing the canopy that would normally cover Sloane's head, so we had to improvise.

It's rough being carried everywhere you go.

But Sloane put on a brave face and got back in the saddle. This hike was actually pretty treacherous at times. There was still quite a bit of snow on the ground and it has been compacted into solid ice sheets that are super slippery. Neither of us fell, but it was kind of sketchy.

This was the kind of view that novices like us deserve. After hiking for about 30 minutes we were pretty spent.
The view was decent enough--you can make out the foggy abyss of the great plains off in the distance. This type of hike triggers Lance's agoraphobia and makes us both long for the comforts of flanking mountain ranges on either side, or at least on one side and the isulating ocean on the other.
The road home is paved with blisters
Sloane enjoying a well-earned meal of peaches in the park.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Christmas break

Sloane likes these Mum Mum rice crackers. We like that they distract her enough to keep her calm in her car seat.
We visited Zhu Jun's family. This is her oldest, Sidney. She also has four more: Cayman, Carter, Charlie, and Cuzco.
Sidney and Cayman in the snow cave that their dad built in the backyard. It snowed about a 18-20 inches in Provo over the break--by far the most I have ever seen there.
Kelli taught Grace how to get crafty and make some headbands for Sloane. We used to be a little against the baby headband, but these are so outrageous that we couldn't pass them up.

This is the best one.
Taylor and Sloane

Utah is cold.
Christmas morning. Grandest and Grandeur got matching pajamas for the grandchildren to wear for Christmas. That's Caleb in the background; it was his job to pass out presents to everybody.

Sloane enjoying her loot.
Grandest and Grandeur went all out this year.
Sloane and Grandest. She usually would not tolerate such an intrusive breach of personal space, but I guess the Christmas spirit got to her.
Sloane and Isaac. Isaac probably taught Sloane how to stand much better than she could before.



Uncle Butch and Aunt Jean came down from Heber to visit.
Caleb, Isaac, Sloane, and Taylor.

Thanksgiving break

Sloane's first taste of water through a straw. We were sitting in Sam Hawk (one of Provo's best restaurants) and Sloane looked like she wanted to try some water. She couldn't suck it up from the normal position, so I held it for her and she seemed to do okay. If you go to Sam Hawk we recommend the Kimchee Jegae, but you can always go with the Beef Bulgogi if you are not feeling very adventurous.
This is one of many pictures that captures Sloane's masterful skills in drooling. See how she deftly balances a choice drip of saliva on the tip of her chin.
Sloane learning to play with other babies. Lyman and Kelli brought Taylor to visit Boulder over the Thanksgiving break. Sloane doesn't get to play with other kids very often--pretty much never--so this was good for her to begin to learn what it means to share. Taylor did a much better job than Sloane.
Santa was giving out free pictures on Pearl Street. Sloane doesn't seem very excited, though.
Sloane and Taylor after we stopped off at Crepes a la Cart on Pearl Street. This restaurant is good: sweet and savory crepes, tons of flavors to choose from. It was one of the highlights of the trip.
We didn't want to cook Thanksgiving dinner, so we ate at the Marriott Hotel in Boulder. The meal was crazy good--the best Thanksgiving food I've ever had. Sloane was being a bad girl the whole time.Taylor was chillin but Sloane was not happy.
Lyman, Kelli, and Tayor stayed at our friends house. Thanks to the McMurtreys for being such good hosts.