Playing Catch Up

It’s been so long since I last posted that I thought I would take advantage of this bus ride to try to catch up. Thing is, I haven’t been taking that many pictures lately and when I do, I post them on instagram which psychologically gives me the illusion that I shared them with the world…
We only took an underwhelming week long vacation this summer in Santa Barbara. I started a bucket list the minute we confirmed our trip because I never really dreamed of going to SB and, with 2 weeks of vacation a year, I feel like I have to make that time off count. We had a fine time though. We saw the sea, met up with our friends from Laguna Beach, visited the Santa Barbara mission (our second California mission)… In fact Eve asked this morning if we could go back to see Franck, the hotel manager who gave her gifts every time he saw her. She is so easily won over… Nevermind my efforts to warn her against strangers.













Here’s a slideshow of Eve’s 4th birthday pictures.

We were lucky to have two photographers at the party. I had hired our student photographer from work, and Cherlyn ended up being able to stop by, and took these amazing pictures even though she was there for at most one hour.

The party was organized at the last minute in a park, and we probably got a little carried away because of it but it ended up being a good sunny day at the park, with pinata, cupcakes and face-painting. We invited Eve’s friends from her  daycare and her “new school” (she still calls his that way after two months). Eve wore her Tinker Bell costume given for her birthday by her Grandpa and Grandma.

When you ask her how old she is now, she automatically holds her hand out with her thumb in her palm. It  takes people a second to get it. During the week before her birthday, she was obsessed with receiving packages and would run to the door every evening to check. She definitely got into the presents thing. But she also decided on her own to save toys and candy from the pinata for her friends Beata and Carsten who couldn’t come to the party. So it’s all good.

Cliquez sur le lien ci-dessus pour les photos de l’anniversaire d’Eve.

Nous avons eu la chance d’avoir deux photographes à la fête. J’avais engagé notre photographe étudiante du boulot, et Cherlyn a finalement pu passer, et a pris ces photos superbes, même si elle était là pendant à peine une heure.

La fête a été organisée à la dernière minute, et du coup on s’est laissé emporter un peu niveau attractions, mais ça a été une bonne journée ensoleillée au parc, avec pinata, cupcakes et maquillage. Nous avions invité les amis d’Eve de sa nounou et sa « nouvelle école » (qu’elle appelle encore comme ça après deux mois). Eve portait son costume de Fée Clochette donné pour son anniversaire par son grand-père et sa grand-mère.

Lorsque vous lui demandez quel âge elle a maintenant, elle montre aussitôt les quatre doigts de sa main avec son pouce dans sa paume. Il faut toujours aux gens une seconde pour comprendre. Pendant la semaine avant son anniversaire, Eve était obsédée par l’idée de recevoir des colis et courait à la porte tous les soirs pour vérifier. Elle s’est vite habituée aux cadeaux. Mais elle a également décidé d’elle-même de garder des jouets et des bonbons de la pinata pour ses amis Beata et Carsten qui n’ont pas pu venir à la fête.

On dying and sharks

Earlier this week:

Eve – If you die, you won’t be my maman, right?
Me (cautious, thinking “Is that when we are having that talk about dying?”) – Yeah…?
Eve – So you have to be careful from sharks… Sharks can die you in the water, cuz they have sharp teeth.

A few days later, I relate the conversation to Erik in front of Eve. Erik starts singing the melody from “Jaws”.

Eve – No! They don’t make that noise! They do “crunch crunch” when they bite your bones.


Il y a quelques jours :
Eve – si tu meurs, tu ne seras plus ma maman, hein ?
Moi – (prudemment, me disant « est-ce que le moment de LA conversation est arrivé ?”) – ouais… ?
Eve – Donc faut que tu fasses attention aux requins… Les requins peuvent te mourir dans l’eau, pasqu’ils ont les dents pointues.
Quelques jours plus tard, je rapporte la conversation à Erik devant Eve. Erik commence à entonner la musique des « Dents de la Mer ».
Eve – Non ! Ils ne font pas ce bruit ! Ils font « crunch crunch » quand ils croquent nos os.


Eve started her new school this week. Even though the setting is only slightly bigger than Eve’s daycare, it already looks like she needs to be more independent and look after herself. No group bathroom breaks, she has to handle her lunch and clean it up on her own, etc. I was first worried that she hadn’t bonded with any teacher yet (the lead teacher told me that often times the kids bond with one particular teacher since there are about four with them at all times) and wouldn’t have the “emotional support” she needs. But yesterday and this morning she seemed very attached to the art teacher, a fun young woman with pink hair named Hannah. This morning she invited Hannah to come to her birthday party. “But first, you need to ask your mom…”, Eve advised.




The first couple of days, I picked Eve up early and we walked (she scootered) to get ice-cream. In fact we visited an apartment the second day in the neighborhood at 6pm, so she ended up scootering for almost 3 hours! She was completely out when we got home. Needless to say, she quickly took to the ice-cream routine and didn’t understand yesterday when I picked her up at the usual time why we couldn’t do that again.
The apartment we visited was all clean and white, just remodeled, and meeting many of our criteria (easy laundry access, 3 bedrooms, close to Bart, back patio). But we decided not to apply and wait until Eve’s kindergarten arrangement is more clear to decide where to live. I can’t wait to have a 3rd bedroom so we can have guests more easily!


Eve has been on a scooter kick for the past couple of weeks. She’s had her scooter for a year but just started riding it confidently. Almost a little too confidently. She is so fast riding it that we have a hard time keeping up, which causes regular scares on the street.
She is very intrigued by what things are made of, which she frames as “what is in [thing]?” So the body for instance is full of bones and blood. This background info will help you understand how Eve cracked me up the other morning, making up a song on a random melody while she was having breakfast: “lait chaudzz* and candies… mix in our tummies… with bones”…
*warm milk in French
Eve adore sa trottinette ces jours-ci. Elle l’a eue l’an dernier, mais commence tout juste être à l’aise dessus. Presque un peu trop à l’aise. Elle est si rapide avec que nous avons du mal à suivre, ce qui nous cause régulièrement des frayeurs.
Elle est très intriguée par de quoi les choses sont faites, « Qu’est-ce qu’il y a dans [chose]?” Ainsi le corps, par exemple, est plein d’os et de sang. Cette information vous aidera à comprendre la chansonnette d’Eve l’autre matin, composée sur une mélodie inventée alors qu’elle prenait son petit déjeuner: “laits chaudzz and candies mix in our tummies with bones”.
















Here are my non-iphone Christmas pics.

Our France vacation was good (although too short). We went to Paris for New Year’s, went to the circus and to spend the evening with my cousin Marguerite and her family. As you can see in these pics, the rest was mostly a lot of hanging out with the Von Trapp family. I really wish I had been able to see more friends, and promised myself that next time we will spend at least 3 weeks in France, in order to do all the things I say I wish I could do at each trip to France: going sailing with my cousin Sophie, visiting my aunt Anne-Marie’s house in Brittany, seeing cousins here and there, seeing long-time friends, etc. Cross my heart.

Nos vacances en France se sont bien passées mais c’était trop court! On est allés à Paris pour le Nouvel An, au cirque puis soirée sushi avec ma cousine Marguerite et sa famille. Comme vous pouvez le voir, pour le reste, c’était plutôt glandage familial Von Trapp. J’aurais tellement aimé voir plus de gens, tellement que je me suis promise de venir au moins 3 semaines la prochaine fois, histoire que je puisse faire tout ce que je dis à chaque séjour que j’aimerais faire : rendre visite à ma tante Anne-Marie dans sa maison de Bretagne, faire du bateau avec ma cousine Sophie, voir mes amis, etc. Croix de bois, croix de fer.

Daycare fun

Girls will be girls… Hair and make-up pretend play.


I was putting away the nativity scene today and couldn’t find Mary. Eve had been playing with the “tiny people” quite a bit so I asked her where “the mom” went.
– I’m sorry I “breaked” it, Maman.
– Oh it’s okay but where is it, Eve? Because maybe we can fix it.
– It was under the couch. I wanted to hide it from you (looking under said couch) it’s not there anymore. But that’s okay, Maman. That’s okay cuz I didn’t hurt my toe or anything like that…

I need to upload lots of Xmas pics. I’m behind! Will do that soon.


Eve has been really excited about Christmas. For the past few months, she’s been wanting everything in toy stores we visit, so I’ve been telling to put it on her Christmas list. The Christmas list is very long, spontaneous, and redundant, so I am taking the liberty to edit it down. Here are a few ideas of things I think Eve could use, for family members who might wonder what she plays with these days.


1. Play food, including a birthday cake set like Melissa and Doug’s. We don’t have any play food other than a cupcake set, and we know how much Eve likes birthdays!

2. Sets for her doll house, such as the nursery set (we have bedroom sets and some kitchen furniture)

3. Books. We never have enough!

4. An African-American baby doll.

5. A train station for her Ikea train tracks.

6. Decorative tape. Eve is in a sticker chart, paper, scissors and tape phase. I think she would probably love some fun tape like this.

7. Another possible doll house set: kitchen accessories and table ware.

8. The Jungle Book DVD.

9. More tracks and maybe a bridge like this one.

I’m realizing that this list is still very gendered – a lot of little girl stuff – despite my original goal of balancing out the “girl” toys and the “boy” toys… Hum. Outside the box suggestions welcome!


Words of wisdom

Tonight Eve was playing quietly in her room when she came out with in her mouth her toothbrush we had forgotten in her room the previous night. she hands it to me and says “I cleaned it”. And heads back to her bedroom.