Tuesday, April 26, 2011


We finally took a trip! Part of coming to Asia is seeing Asia - but with 2 small kids, high expenses, etc. - it took awhile to get in some travel. We spent 9 days in Bali. Thanks to a nice hook-up from my Uncle Howard, we stayed in a fabulous villa at the Karma Kandara, located in Ungasan on the Bukit Peninsula - on the southern tip of Bali.

The resort and villa were great - nice pool, beach, restaurants, kids club. We had a 3 bedroom villa, so we had a room, Leah had a room and Will shared with Nilda. It was really great to have Nilda with us - meant for a much more relaxing trip than we otherwise could have had with an 11 month old and 3 year old. The kids club at the resort was also incredibly useful as the kids spent most mornings there with Nilda playing with toys, doing arts and crafts, getting nails painted, etc.

We took Leah along to the Ulu Watu Temple one evening for the Kecak Dance. We ate at a few good restaurants. We went to Waterbom, a very nice little water park. Other than that we lounged, relaxed, swam, and just enjoyed being on vacation!

Bali is beautiful. The people are friendly. The fruits are delicious (our villa included a fruit plate that was restocked daily). We would definitely love to go back some day and see other parts of the island - we did not make it further north than Seminyak.

We had some good milestones on the trip too. On April 15, actually in the car on the way from the airport to the resort, Will started clapping. He is now an excellent clapper and will do it on request when he is in the mood to play along. And on April 20 at Waterbom, Will took his first steps. He took just a couple steps from me to Nilda while standing in just a couple inches of water. Then later that day I was able to coax him to take a few steps by forcibly letting go of his hand and encouraging him to walk to me. Since then he's done similar little bits a few times - but he does not seem to be all that confident in his abilities on his feet. He has been letting go and standing solo more and more but still only for a few seconds at a time.

He also seems to be adding some words. He seems to say "hi" appropriately. And since there were monkeys on the grounds of the resort (wild monkeys that inhabit the area - long tailed macaques) we worked on what a monkey says, "ahh ahh ahh ahh."

Leah had a great time on the trip too. She practiced her swimming and she can now swim solo - scooping and kicking - for about 10 feet. Both kids have gotten increasingly comfortable in the water - a good thing - but may make for a very tiring summer at the pool for me.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Ball, Haircut, Swimming Pool, Fieldtrip

Looking back at the two weeks or so since I last posted, I realize that we have been having fun! The weather is warming up. We've been getting together with friends. School and activities have been going well.

In my last post I was debating whether Will was saying more words. I've decided he definitely has "no" down. He doesn't say it all that regularly. But when I wash his face he tends to mutter "nananana" and other "na" and "no" utterances pop up here and there. And today he added a new one - "ball." Definitely his favorite toys - at home, at a friend's, at the Eagle's Nest, in the pool - he loves to play with balls - and now he can talk about it. He must be an athlete in the making!

In other exciting news, Will had a haircut today. I took him to Spur, which had been recommended by several people. The guy there was great. Started with the top, then did the sides/back, and ended with the front (which is the most disturbing for a young child). Will sat pretty well for it - a combination of watching cartoons and looking in the mirror helped - and of course he was sitting on my lap. He only cried at the very end, when the front was being cut and I had to hold his hands to keep him from grabbing at the scissors. It looks cute...although the front isn't quite even...hard to cut hair well when the head keeps moving.

Yesterday was the big day of the week though. Leah had a school fieldtrip in the morning. I chaperoned, along with 4 teachers and 7 other mothers. We took 2 classes of 2.5-3.5 year olds - about 25 kids - to Hong Kong Park. We stopped at the pond first to see the pond life. Then we walked through the aviary. And we ended at the playground, where the kids ate their snacks and then played for awhile. Overall it was fun - although maybe not all that educational.

And yesterday afternoon it was sunny and warm - and I finally took Will into the pool. He loved it! We spent the afternoon there again today. I'm definitely going to enjoy this perk of living in a tropical climate. We actually spent last weekend hanging at the pool too - Leah enjoyed it - I thought it was a bit cold and didn't go in - hence Will did not either.