30 April 2012

Paddling again

I set a few goals for myself for Q1 2012 and one of them is to get my ass back in an outrigger canoe and start paddling again. I looked around for a club that can accommodate the limited time I can commit to paddling and racing and I found Vancouver Ocean Sports (VOS). They have a “recreational” level for experienced paddlers who do not have much time to train for races and time trials. I want to paddle all the time but realistically, I can go only one night a week and the occasional Saturday or Sunday. So the recreational level that VOS offered sounded perfect.

I signed up and started paddling with the club in early March. I was really nervous before my first practice. First of all, it took me a few attempts to locate all my winter paddling gear. Secondly, I am so out of shape (both fitness and paddling shape) that I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with everybody. Thirdly, I had not paddled for almost two and a half years and I was sure my technique would be really off.

I arrived at the VOS compound early to meet the other paddlers. They were quite friendly and I warned them that I haven’t paddled in a while just to set expectations really low. Once we got started, muscle memory kicked in. I tried not to over-think it and just let my body move how it remembered to. It felt so good to be back on the water! We went out from Burrard Marina toward Jericho, then turned around back to Burrard. The weather was just right and the sun setting to the west while the moon rose over the city skyline was a perfect “welcome back to paddling” moment. We paddled around 8 km that evening and I was very pleased with myself for being able to last the entire practice. I was exhausted and sore after practice but it felt really good.

I have been attending practices once a week since March and the coach has already tried to get me to come out more and even sign up for races. But for now, once a week is all I can do. No pressure, just paddling for fun, and I am okay with that.

17 April 2012

20 months

Sophia wakes up smiling.  I love that about her.  When I walk into her room in the morning or after her nap, I usually say, “hi, baby” and as she lays in her crib, she responds by saying, “hi, mommy” and giving me a big smile.  It’s a great way to start my day.

Sophia is definitely a toddler now, although I still call her baby.  She knows many words and invents many more everyday.  She’s good at communicating what she wants by using her words, her hands and fingers (there’s a lot of pointing going on), or her cries.  She says these a lot: “no, no, no”, “mine”, and “stop, mommy, stop” (this when I am getting her to do/eat  something she doesn’t like).  She has a clear sense of what she likes and dislikes, and for the dislikes, there is no changing her mind.  We just have to wait for her to change her mind on her own. 

She loves shoes.  She’s fascinated by them and spends time sitting and playing with the laces or putting the shoes on and off her feet.  She is still a bit of a picky eater - nothing orange or yellow, for example - but eats a good amount when it is a dish that she likes.  She’s very good with music and rhythm, and spends a good portion of her day singing.  She’s  a climber (they call her Knievel in daycare) and loves to play and run around.  She’s very good with the iPad, too.  It’s amazing to watch her use it and figure it out.  She knows the icon for Videos and she finds the Dora and Little Einsteins videos, no problem.  She’s also pretty good at the memory game where you open two cards and try to find the matching ones.  You can see her pause as she tries to recall where the matching card is and she usually gets it right. I tried playing this with her with real cards and that didn’t work out too well.  I guess we’ll stick with the iPad until she’s a little older.

She’s starting to put her shirt and pants on by herself, however, I still have to assist her put her arms through or pull up her pants completely.  And since we practiced “elimination communication” with her beginning at 3 months, she’s quite comfortable using the toilet.  She reads while sitting on the toilet and will sit there until she’s had enough reading done.  Yes, our toilet time can take a while.  She has started to say “poo poo” when she has to go.  There are days when I don’t even have to change her diaper at all because she manages to do her business on the toilet.  I now take along a portable toilet seat when we go out.  Yikes, using the public washroom is a whole new experience!

Our happy little baby is now a little toddler.  She’s growing so fast!  We get so much joy watching her learn and explore and perform new tricks.  It’s funny how proud I feel when she can sing a new song or say a new word.  I now understand how parents can go on and on about their kids!  hahaha

Here are some recent photos:

S eating her siopao
Reading/potty time

Playing with Froggie in her "spaceship"

Checking out the new backpack in the mirror

Watching Dora on the iPad
With braids on.  Cutie.