Tuesday, April 24, 2012

California Quotidian, 4

It's been nearly two months since I posted last. March was consumed mostly with house guests Marie and Norm, en route to and returning from China, and assorted outings. The big news was that Penelope took her first steps in early March, and March 12 is regarded as the day she first walked. Ten months, two weeks. More on her below, since today is her first birthday.

Through March and April, I continued my digitization project--digitizing the family's 35mm slides--and have completed nearly 7,000. Four at a time, ten minutes or so per pass. Plenty of additional time reviewing, cleaning, organizing, recording, archiving, etc. I have a about a thousand to go, but, happily, saved the easiest for the last. They are mostly our 1989 family European vacation, already sorted and placed in chronological order, unlike much of what has preceded them. In any case, quite a few topics and pix from the digitization project relate to travel and therefore will find their way onto this blog...selected European sights and incidents, 1979-1998, hiking and climbing in the Winds, Montana, western snowmobiling 2003-2008, and more.

Daughter Rachel and her husband Will visited earlier in April. Although we talk nearly weekly, it was especially good to see her; first time since their wonderful Missoula wedding in August. We undertook a number outings, the four of us and the seven of us, down the coast and up to the City, and more. Penelope instantly took to them both, especially Auntie Rachel.

Penelope. I am sure her mama will more thoroughly document her achievements by her first birthday. At age one, nonetheless, she was walking very well and performing a variety of maneuvers associated with walking, falling down, getting up after falling down, changing direction, pivoting, scampering at least for short distances, etc. She can be very quick and has to be watched closely. She feeds herself mostly. Small bits of anything. Healthy stuff, always, of course. She favors flavor and spice. At PF Chang's she will avoid the egg drop soup but go enthusiastically for the hot and sour. "Baby-led weaning" has been a great success for Penelope and her parents. (Her dad Jeremy is a foodie). She has half a dozen baby-tricks: "babies rule!" "Penelope Power," "Penelope is number one!" etc. Although she plays quite well with her toys, she most enjoys "reading" books with her parents and grand-parents. She has a passive/receptive vocabulary of probably a hundred or more expressions--names of people, places, toys, objects--and can follow all sorts of simple requests ("bring the ball to Grandma," "keep hat on," "let's read the Nose book," etc.). Rebecca has been teaching her baby signing, and she has several signs down very well ("more," "all done," etc.). She uses her index fingers all the time, pointing to this and that, nearby and far. She waves bye-bye and hello, and often conjoins "hi" with a little wave. We'll let her parents figure out what the first words are. She is a happy baby, a constant joy for us to be with, and we are so thankful for the past months' time with her. Happy birthday, Penelope!
Rachel and Will with Penelope

Penelope shopping with Mama at DayOne on her birthday

Penelope Power!