catfish, (no) candles, cousins

Posted by kyden on Sunday Nov 30, 2014 Under Uncategorized

don’t look at the text exchange over on the right until i tell you, okay?  no cheating.

20141130-IMG_5524i passed the orange pufferfish level today!  i rang the bell, got a new card, and now, i’m a red catfish!  it has taken me 3-4 months to get through these past few levels, but i hear that the red level is going to be tough for me; my teacher said that i am at a disadvantage because i am so small.  one of the passing skills is to be able to swim an entire lap (with one change of direction) doing the freestyle stroke with side breathing.  i can swim, but i can’t make it all the way across the pool.  i need to build up my endurance!

20141130-IMG_5128 did i mention that today is mommy’s birthday?  it was totally low key.  we didn’t do anything special to celebrate — no cake, no candles.  daddy did make oyako for dinner, though, and i guess that’s special because that’s one of mommy’s favorites.  also, uncle randy had two boxes of chocolate covered fruit delivered to our house.  those were really special and deeelicious!  (we ate most of them for our afternoon snack and polished off the rest after dinner.)

when mommy puts me to bed at night, we often have really deep conversations.  we talk about things like gender identification, homelessness, or whatever happens to be on my mind that day.  tonight, we got on the topic of cousins.  mommy told me about all of her cousins, and it got me to thinking.  why do i only have ONE cousin? 🙁  mommy explained that i will get more cousins when auntie barbara and uncle randy have kids.  so we texted auntie barbara.

okay, now you can read the text exchange we had with her over on the right.

i wonder why auntie barbara threw up.  i hope she feels better soon.

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TWT post-thanksgiving get-together

Posted by kyden on Saturday Nov 29, 2014 Under Uncategorized

one of the things about thanksgiving that we are most thankful for is the 4-day weekend.  the time away from school and work gives us a chance to recover from food coma and also spend time with friends and family.

20141129-IMG_5109sierra and sofia usually come up from socal to visit family in the bay area, so holiday weekends are a great chance to catch up with them.  they came over to visit today, and so did logan and mason.  us big kids mostly played wii.  creating miis for everyone was just as much (if not more) fun than actually playing games.  sienna and sofia did girly things (i dunno what — i wasn’t paying attention), and mason mostly did his own thing.  mason often does his own thing — like, he didn’t join us for the photo because he didn’t feel like it. 😛

we had a great time hanging out.  it was especially nice for sienna to have girls to play with instead of just tagging along with me and my buddies like she usually does.  she misses sofia already!  sierra and sofia aren’t going to be around for christmas this year, so it’s gonna be awhile until our next TWT (tanaka/wolbert/tai) post-holiday get together.

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homework sucks

Posted by kyden on Friday Nov 28, 2014 Under Uncategorized

starting transitional kindergarten was an adjustment for me: new school, new schedule, new friends, new rules, etc.  but i’m handling it well.  luckily for me, i have mommy to help me remember my healthy snack and tote bag every day, homework folder and poetry binder on mondays, share item on tuesdays, red school shirt on wednesdays, and library book on fridays.  whew.

one of the changes that came along with TK was mandatory homework.  i was worried about it at first.  i asked mommy if it was going to be too hard for me.  mommy told me that i was going to love it, because i love to learn.  and she was right.  my regular homework is actually really fun.  each day, in addition to reading for 15 minutes, i have one activity to complete.  here are some examples from this month’s homework sheet:

  • tell what you think it would have been like to travel on the mayflower.
  • write a friend’s phone number.
  • guess how long it will take for an ice cube to melt.  time it to check your guess.
  • make up and tell a story about five little pilgrims and a turkey.
  • make popcorn.  glue the kernels onto paper to write the letters in your name.

fun stuff, right?  so when i heard that i was going to have homework to do in hawaii (since i was skipping 6 days of school), i wasn’t worried at all.  well lemme tell you… it SUCKED.  i wrote about it in my oahu vacation recap, but it’s worth repeating.  this is what i had to do for homework while we were in hawaii.

  • write upper and lower case letters and numbers every day
  • draw and caption a detailed picture of what i did each day
  • draw pictures of 16 items that start with the letters A, B, C, D
  • create simple patterns using objects that i saw each day
  • identify items in groups of 1-12
  • find things that start with each of the letters of my name
  • read for 15 minutes and and re-tell the stories
  • do jumping jacks and sprints

and that was on top of my regular homework sheet.  it was awful.  my penmanship is terrible to begin with, and i was rushing to finish so i could go play, so my letters and numbers just got messier and messier.  mommy kept making me erase them and write them over again.  it took FOREVER.  homework brought me to tears every day, and mommy was so frustrated that she almost cried, too.  mommy said that if this is what it is going to be like, one of us if not going to survive the next 14 years of homework.

mommy already told me that finishing high school is non-negotiable.  you know what that means?  that means that college is optional.  i have already decided that i am definitely not going to college.  who the heck would sign up to do more homework when they don’t have to?

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last-minute thanksgiving

Posted by kyden on Thursday Nov 27, 2014 Under Uncategorized

at school, sienna and i both did projects showing what we are thankful for this thanksgiving.  i am thankful for yummy food like salad and ranch (dressing).  sienna is thankful for mommy and daddy a nd me and gung-gung, and koda.  after i saw what sienna is thankful for, i burst into tears.  i felt terrible for not saying that i was thankful for my family — i had picked food that i was thankful for because that’s why all my friends at school were doing.  don’t worry, i made sure to tell mommy that i was thankful for her.

20141127-IMG_5071anyway, since we had been recovering from our trip all week, we weren’t thinking about thanksgiving.  apparently, nobody else was, either.  grandma and grandma were planning to have a small dinner with uncle randy.  uncle jamie and auntie alyssa joked about going out for hot pot.  it seemed that we were on our own for thanksgiving.  but the thing is, daddy won a turkey in that golf tournament that he played in last week.  and daddy loves turkey with all the fixin’s, so he asked mommy to make a traditional thanksgiving dinner.  for him.  so, since mommy was going to be making dinner anyway, we made everyone come over to help us eat all the food.  plus, mommy thought it was pretty lame that everyone was going to spend the holiday separately.

20141127-IMG_5081it was all very last-minute, but our thanksgiving dinner came together nicely — especially when it came to dessert.  we had six pies!  mommy made two, uncle randy brought two, and grandpa brought two.  apparently, nobody talks to each other.  or maybe everyone just really likes pie.

we had a wonderful thanksgiving.  daddy got his delicious turkey with gravy, stuffing, and green bean casserole.  sienna and i got to play with cousin zoey.  and the most important thing is that we all got to spend the holiday together with our family.  happy thanksgiving!

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no vacation from our vacation

Posted by kyden on Saturday Nov 22, 2014 Under Uncategorized

you know how people say they need vacations from their vacations?  we do.  but we didn’t get one.  today was our first day back from vaca and our calendar was fully booked.

20141122-IMG_5059first, daddy left the house early in the morning to play in a golf tournament with grandpa and uncle randy.  sienna had a make-up hula class this morning but we missed it because we overslept.  (we are still on hawaii time.)  then, i had karate class.  kai-kai met us there, so all went out to eat afterwards, then they came over to hang out all afternoon.  and then, sienna and i went to movie night at the dojo while mommy went out for a girls’ night with auntie judy.  whew!

movie night was awesome.  we played games, ate pizza, and watched the lego movie.  we definitely did not waste any time getting back into our regular busy routine.  we are exhausted!

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oahu vacation: recap

Posted by kyden on Thursday Nov 20, 2014 Under Uncategorized

for our first few days on oahu, we stayed at the hilton hawaiian village in honolulu.  it was a nice room, but sienna and i thought it was small.  i guess we were expecting a big house or 2-BR villa like the places that we’ve stayed at during other hawaii vacations.

after a few days in honolulu, we checked in at disney’s aulani resort where we met up with matthew and jeffrey.  it was UH-MAY-ZING.

since i was missing 6 days of school, mommy and i had to sign an independent study contract.  that means that i had to do homework every day.  a boatload of it.  i had to practice writing upper and lower case letters and numbers, draw and caption a detailed picture of what i did each day, draw 16 pictures that started with the letters A, B, C, D, create simple patterns using objects that i saw each day, identify items in groups of 1-12, find things that start with each of the letters of my name, read for 15 minutes and and re-tell the stories, and do jumping jacks and sprints.  and that’s on top of my regular homework sheets.  TK is intense.

anyway, here’s a recap of what we did each day.  (if you want to skip the words and just go straight to the photos, click here.  mommy and daddy took some of the photos, but most of them were taken by the aulani photogs.)

FRIDAY (11/14):  arrived on oahu.  walked around honolulu.  dinner at 678 hawaii.  shopping at walmart to stock up on homework supplies.  pearl tea at tea boss for daddy.

20141115-1E7A6352SATURDAY (11/15):  headed to northshore.  breakfast at kono’s.  played at laniakea beach (since there was a surf competition at haleiwa ali’i beach park).  visited the dole plantation.  picked up food at yama’s fish market.  swam at the hotel pool.  watched “wreck it ralph” at movie night on the lawn.  toward the end of the movie, i stood up and said “i’m hungry”.  so we went and had a late night snack at CJ’s NY style deli.

SUNDAY (11/16):  malasadas at leonard’s.  we looove malasadas.  they are deeelicious!  coffee break at glazer’s.  lunch at sushi king.  pure aloha shave ice.  aloha stadium swap meet.  checked into the aulani.  dinner at aloha salad.

20141117-Photo 0055MONDAY (11/17): character breakfast.  fish are friends (we made fish food and fed it to the fish in the rainbow reef).  eruption disruption (science experiment simluating a volcano eruption).  dinner at monkey pod.  starlit hui (luau without food).

20141118-Photo 0249TUESDAY (11/18):  water slides.  water slides.  water slides.  hula lessons, stich’s goo (science experiement where we made goo).  dinner at plantation tavern.

WEDNESDAY (11/19):  scuba diving with hawaii nautical with for mommy and daddy.  eruption disruption.  menehune mix up (interactive music show).  surf’s up with chip and dale (we decorated mini wooden surfboards and had a dance party with chip and dale).  grown ups had a fancy dinner at ama ama.

20141120-Photo 0429THURSDAY (11/20):  toddler splash and play (built sand castles and dug for treasure in the sand).  kayaking, paddle boarding, swimming.  canoe race (decorated and raced mini canoes).  menehune adventure trail (ipad-led scavenger hunt through the resort).

FRIDAY (11/21):  lunch at teddy’s bigger burgers and yama’s fish market (again).  on our flight home, daddy and i sat separately from mommy and sienna.

oahu highlights:

  • the food.  OMG the food.  our faves: leonard’s malasadas (honolulu), yama’s fish market (honolulu), shave ice at uncle clay’s house of pure aloha (honolulu), monkeypod (kapolei), thai lao (kapolei).
  • perfect weather.  warm, nice breeze, and it wasn’t even humid.
  • pressing the elevator buttons in the hotels
  • aunty’s beach house.  this is the kids’ activity center where we did so many cool things.  my favorites were stitch’s space goo (stitch said that the goo we made were his boogers) and surf’s up.
  • performing in the starlit hui.  sienna accidentally stole some coconut shell “instruments”.
  • swimming (for me), water slides (for sienna).  sienna especially loved the tube slide that was super dark and fast.  i was too scared to try it, but she went over and over and over again!
  • wreck dive, including plenty of giant turtles (for mommy and daddy)
  • paddle boarding and kayaking (for mommy and sienna).  sienna got to stand up on the board and hold her own paddle on the kayak!
  • menehune adventure trail.  the magic of the menehune lives on!
  • hanging out with the lims all week.  matthew and i were BFF’s and did everything together, which was especially awesome because sienna and jeffrey still nap every day.

oahu lowlights:

  • homework
  • homework
  • homework
  • no shiny yellow race car.  it would only fit 2 people.
  • no turtles.  we even went to the northshore beach nicknamed “turtle beach”.  false advertising.
  • our only complaint about the aulani is that the food is just meh, and the food in the shopping center across the street is only slightly better.  good thing we had cars so that we could go into town to find good food!

our plan has always been to visit a different island every time we go to hawaii.  next on our list is the big island.  but we had such an amazing time at the aulani that we just might keep going back there until sienna and i get tired of it.  it think we’re good for at least another 4 years.  who’s in for aulani 2016? 🙂

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oahu vacation: and we’re off

Posted by kyden on Friday Nov 14, 2014 Under Uncategorized

20141114-IMG_4974every other year, we take a family vacation to hawaii with friends.  when i was 1, we went to maui with the tais.  when sienna and i were 1 and 3, we went to kauai with the angs.  this year, we’re it’s oahu with the lims.

20141114-IMG_4979the airplane ride over was uneventful.  i had a little trouble getting my ears unplugged on the descent, but at least i didn’t throw up all over myself like last time.  when we landed, our first stop was the car rental place.  sienna and i picked a yellow race car, but mommy said that our car seats wouldn’t fit in there.  oh well.

we are going to spend a few days in honolulu and then we’ll meet matthew and jeffrey at disney’s aulani resort on the west side of the island.  everyone says that we’re going to love it there.  i just hope that they have real swimming pools with real water — not like the salty water in the ocean.

full report when we get back!

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baby love

Posted by kyden on Tuesday Nov 11, 2014 Under Uncategorized

20141111-IMG_4970 sienna has always hated babies.  well, that’s not entirely true.  she actually likes babies as long as mommy is not holding them.  one time while sienna was in the middle of a swim lesson, mommy was sitting in the observation area holding baby isabelle.  sienna caught a glimpse of them through the window and started screaming “don’t hold baby!!!”  she wouldn’t turn around and get back to her swim lesson until mommy handed the baby back to auntie viki (isabelle’s mommy).

i felt the same way about babies for a long time, but i had to get over it really quickly once sienna invaded our house.  sienna was never forced to get over it.

20141111-IMG_4963today, we went to our friend emma’s house to visit her new baby.  her baby brother’s name is bradley.  we figured we would just get to say hi to him because sienna would certainly throw a fit if mommy held him.  but guess what.  she didn’t!  mommy held baby bradley while sienna and i played with emma.  sienna didn’t mind one bit.  sienna even held and kissed baby bradley.  she said that she wanted to bring him to hawaii with us.

mommy asked sienna why she doesn’t let her hold other babies but is okay with baby bradley.  sienna said that he is the best baby and she loves him.  awww…

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milestone birthdays

Posted by kyden on Sunday Nov 9, 2014 Under Uncategorized

20141109-IMG_4928 it seems like we have a lot of friends celebrating their first birthdays this year.  in just the last couple of months, baby isabelle, baby jeffrey, and baby lucas turned one.  and today, we went to baby keira’s birthday party.  daddy and i went first because mommy and sienna were at cousin caitlyn’s cheer showcase.  sienna was so excited to see all those girls with sparkly uniforms flip, tumble, and fly through the air.  she says that she can’t wait to “do that”.   i guess she really couldn’t wait because she did a forward roll onto the mat in between performances.  mommy is really hoping that sienna doesn’t get into competitive cheer because mommy cannot hang with the perfect hair, makeup, and nails that those cheers moms have, even when they’re wearing yoga pants and team t-shirts.

20141109-IMG_5407anyway, we’ve found that first birthday parties are often more for the grown ups than for the kid.  that’s especially true when the birthday baby doesn’t have older siblings that need to be entertained.  and since keira’s party was at the clubhouse of her apartment complex, we sort of figured that her party was going to be more of a grown up party than a kid party.  and it was.  but after everyone ate, keira’s auntie brought out a bunch of modeling clay.  what a nice surprise for me and sienna and all the other kids!  we all channeled our inner sculptors.

20141109-IMG_4931look what i made.  what do you think it looks like?  i was a little insulted that mommy thought it was a turkey.  obviously, it’s a cake with a birthday candle on top.  one candle, because keira is one!

20141109-IMG_4944after keira’s party, sienna took a quick nap, and then we were off to another milestone birthday celebration.  uncle jamie is 40!  that is SO OLD.  we went out for hot pot at little sheep.  we love that place, but mostly we love hanging out with cousin zoey.

hugs to keira for turning the big ONE, and a big FOUR-O fist bump to uncle jamie!

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end of soccer season

Posted by kyden on Saturday Nov 8, 2014 Under Uncategorized

20141108-IMG_4916today was the last day of the soccer season.  after an entire season, i can confidently say that i am not very good at soccer.  but i love it!  when mommy signed me up for soccer, there were a few things that she was hoping that i would get out of it.

1) learn some new sports skills.  check!

2) get some exercise.  double check!

3) learn about teamwork.  ummm… does cheering for your teammates count?  i did a lot of that.  but there wasn’t a whole lot of teamwork happening amongst us 4 and early-5 yos.  i didn’t pass much because i don’t have good aim, and the other kids on my team didn’t pass much because they wanted to score goals!

20141108-IMG_4912 4) learning to win and lose graciously.  there is no official scoring in this league (in my age group), but i knew the score at all times.  and since we had 2 ringers on our team, we didn’t lose.  our parents (and coach) sort of felt bad for the other teams and sometimes even made arrangements to feed the other team the ball at throw-ins to give them a fighting chance.

well, 2 out of 4 ain’t bad, i guess.  i also received a participation trophy and i got to keep my pennant section of our team banner.  i’m bummed that soccer season is over, but at least i won’t have to wake up so freaking early on saturdays anymore.

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