Saturday, April 13, 2013

Sometimes Things are Better Than You Could Ever Hope For

Like most moms I have a soul deep desire to be the absolute best mom I can be.
I had so much fun having Alison at home with me for the past 3 years but she simply outgrew being at home with mom all day, especially when Ethan was born. I couldn't just sit down with her like before and dedicate my undivided attention. I would get her started on something but then had to leave to take care of Ethan. I'm sure it comes as no surprise this was not acceptable to Alison.
She needed more. She needed more time outside. More time playing with other kids, more structure, more learning, more more more! More than what I could give her at home. She started seeing/hearing about other kids going to school and she wanted to go to school too, so we decided to give it a go!
Alison has been in daycare a couple months now and it's been a blessing.
At first I felt like a failure for not being able to meet all her needs, and it took a little while to get over that, but she gets so much more at daycare. More of the quality things that I want for her. Things like friendships, language learning (Japanese), going on walks, playing outside, learning, coloring/art. She has become braver since starting school as well. She will go down slides, touch glue and other sticky things, she is doing so well I wish I would have put her in daycare sooner! Granted this daycare is special. It's next to the ocean so they get to walk along the beach everyday and during the summer they don their bathing suits and play in the sand and water. They explore the area of town near the daycare and spend a lot of time outside (yesterday they went picnicking!). It's run by Japanese people and so Alison is getting exposure to a new culture (most of the kids are American). We are thinking it might be a good thing for Ethan too, but I want to wait till he is at least walking. But I have to admit the idea of having time to myself to work on my business and my hobbies and run errands without also caring for kids is very appealing. Daycare is really so much better than what I thought it was going to be. I had this idea in my head that it would stifle Alison and the opposite has happened, she seems to have really bloomed into a young child.

This is the inside of the daycare. It's a small school and has less than 30 children total.

Their teacher, Chris Sensai, has them doing exercises together where the kids stomp their feet, march and so all sorts of things to get their bodies moving.

Alison seems to like going on their little "field trips"

All these pictures were taken by Alison's teachers and  her main teacher Takako shares them with the parents so we get to see what the kids are up to during the day! I love it!!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Love and Sunflowers

I have sooo many pictures to share with you! My beautiful family out and about. Figuring out life in a new county and living on base. January 15th to February 10th 2013!

There is this really great Japanese place across the street from our apartment called Gen's
They have the BEST fried rice and California rolls mmmm...
And yes Alison is watching herself drink a glass of water in her mirror.

Ethan ate too and then went to sleep :)

At home snuggled next to dad

"What is this?"

"I like it!"
Ethan enjoys taking a bath!

Post bath snuggles with dad

Yep, I really do <3

Love being a mom

Tea Party!

Ethan hanging out with one of big boys in our building

Alison likes helping mommy with the stroller, she is a really great big sister.

So little. 
This is mom multi tasking: feeding Alison dinner and giving the baby his bath.

which he loves

The cutest little boy I've ever seen

love that little guy

Ali loves painting!

Her finished project!

Alison sitting by the fifth floor's number five that's in front of the elevator

At Blue Seal a Japanese ice cream place that made to look like 50s America but the food still has a Japanese flair to it. You can get Beni Emo ice cream which is purple sweet potato.

On the elevator down to the car for Alison's first day of daycare!

Here is Alison's daycare. It is wonderful and cozy and Alison really seems to enjoy it. 

Day 2, we had to wear our Belle dress AND out bumble bee backpack

Daddy came with mommy to pick Alison up. She was at the playground so we were able to walk back to the school with the kids.

Every afternoon at school they change clothes regardless of if they need to and the teacher fixes their hair and they brush their teeth

Ethan hanging out with his buddy Payton

Must have played hard :)

At the finish of Alison's first week of daycare, mommy stopped at a Japanese Bakery that makes French baked goods. It was really good. Alison picked out her special treat herself! Chocolate!

The bakery all decorated for Valentines Day. In Japan, women buy gifts for the men.
It happened because of an advertisement about Valentines Day that was misinterpreted! Neat how one little mistake can change the way a culture celebrates a holiday!

Ethan slept through our trip to the bakery.

One thing I love about living here are the "typos".
This "Apart Ment" is near Alison's school.

Typical Okinawa

Alison ready for church....yes I made her wear sock with sandals, I didn't think it looked that bad at the time!!

Ethan gets to wear footie pajamas to church

Going to the sunflower fields with some friends!

silly baby!

Sometime local Japanese food taste really weird. I have no idea what Alison is eating but it's some sort of jellied dessert thing and an Okinawa doughnut (right hand), which is really good.

the end