Wednesday, March 28, 2007

New York trip

Jonah and I had a wonderful time visiting my sister and her partner Adam in New York. This was our first inter-state trip alone, without dad. Jonah did great on both flights - he even slept! - which were both 100% full! Since Jonah was a lap child, I didn't get much sleep myself. But the flights were non-stop and only about 6 hours long.

As soon as we walked in to my sister's place, Jonah felt right at home. It was amazing how comfortable he felt with my sister. He called her "baba", the same as my mom, and was totally trusting and affectionate with her from the get-go. My sister even babysat Jonah for a few hours one afternoon and Jonah barely missed his parents. How great is that!

One of Jonah's favorite things to do in New York was play uncle Adam's drums and piano. Pics here. The other hit was Prospect Park, a huge and pretty park only two blocks from my sister's house.

What surprised me was how quiet her Brooklyn neighborhood was. Hardly any cars passed by. Most of the surrounding houses were one or two-family houses, no bigger than two-stories. My sister still does her shopping the old-fashioned way - in little stores. A deli, a fish market, the butchers..., because that's the way the neighborhood, which not long ago used to be predominantly Italian and is still full of old-timers, works.

We saw some friends with kids, which was also very fun. Jonah played with a 3-month old, a four-year-old, and my cousins, who are teenagers.

I got to meet Carmen, who, as per my earlier post, asked me to write for She lives in New York and is great!

Well, that's it for this installment of Adventures with Jonah. More soon.

Friday, March 23, 2007

in New York

Jonah and I are in New York, visiting my sister and her partner Adam. I'll post more about the trip soon, but just checking in to report that we're having a fabulous time! Jonah feels right at home here.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

I'm published in this month's issue of....

Oh my goodness! I can't believe my piece is among those published in the March issue of the Erase Racism Carnival hosted by, an excellent blog about the intersection of race and pop culture that read frequently. The Erase Racism Carnival is is a collection of blog posts dedicated to creating a world free of racism.

You can read this month's issue, including my piece, Tracing Race: one immigrant's journey from race awareness to anti-racist consciousness here. I will be hosting the carnival in June on my other blog, white anti-racist parent.

By the way, the founder of racialicious and host of the carnival this month approached me about becoming a columnist for another site she runs called, a blog for parents who are committed to raising children with an anti-racist outlook. I said yes! Please cross your fingers for me. I am scared, but thrilled!

Monday, March 19, 2007

love to reminisce

Jonah now has the ability to reminisce about things he's done and people he's seen. He especially likes to do this in bed before he falls asleep. He not only wants to list the objects, people, and activities he's remembering from the day gone by, he wants to discuss them (with his limited vocabulary of course). I have to respond to him, repeat what he says and expand on it or admire his ability to extrapolate.


J: Fih, Fih, Fih..
me: Yes, Finn.
J: Fih, Fih, Fih...
me: We saw Finn today.
J: Meh, Meh...
me: And his mama Megan.
J: Hamma, baw.
me: You played with a hammer and balls at their house.
J: Dee.
me: You played with a digger too.
J: Dee, dee, dee.
me: The digger had a shovel.
J: Shofoo, shofoo...

It's amazing to see his cognitive ability expand.

on the coast with family

A week ago we spent a wonderful few days on the coast with Jonah's Montana grandparents and aunt and uncle. (Yes, during this trip Jonah learned to finally say his aunt's name - Jenni. He says it ALL the time now!) The house we rented was brand new and beautiful. The weather, not so much. But we had a fire every day and a nice time despite the rain and gusty wind outside.

You can see some of the pics from our trip here.

Monday, March 05, 2007

playing with friends & pretending

Jonah had the best time ever last Saturday. We had a get-together at our house and his best friend Finn was one of the guests. While the adults ate and chatted, the two boys played together. They were able to interact and have much more fun than ever before. Jonah can communicate a little bit better and is becoming less self-absorbed as he gets older. His imagination is expanding too. The two of them chased each other, played peeek-a-boo, read books, drew, and jumped on the bed. What a great feeling to see Jonah enjoy himself with a friend!

Yesterday Tim, Jonah and I went on a walk in a beautiful area with wide open fields and old trees along side of a river. Jonah found a large wood chip that reminded him of a fish. He called it "fish" and threw it in the field. Then he pretended the field was a lake and fed wood chips to the fish in the lake, saying "papat", which means "to eat" in Czech. He played this game for quite a while. It was amazing to see his imagination at work.

Today we went to the playground. There Jonah shared the slide with another little girl. At one point he stepped on her hand while they were both climbing up the ladder. The girl said something to the effect of "ouch", but Jonah seemed oblivious, too focused on getting to the top of the slide. I stopped him and told him in a language he could understand that it hurt the girl when he stepped on her foot. About half way home, he recalled the incident, repeating "au" (Czech version of ouch) in a slightly whiny voice and "baby." He remembered stepping on the girl's hand and was discussing the experience with me. He seemed concerned. I told him that I don't think it was too serious and not to worry, just be careful next time. I'm not sure he understood that, but it was interesting to see him processing something that happened in the past and that seemed significant to him.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

the great imitiator

Jonah has started to repeat words and phrases he hears us say. The other day I said to a driver whose driving I was not impressed with, "Are you kidding?" through a windshield. Jonah said, "kidding?" It made my day.

Today he repeated a long phrase after me: "airplane in the sky."

This week he began to imitate some sounds he hears. When assembling and disassembling the potty, which he refuses to use, he made a peeing sound: "chhhhhh" and looked at me, following up with the words "pee pee" and "kaka". So he definitely gets what the potty is for, he just won't sit on it.

He also imitated the chirping, or more like screaming of birds outside, saying "pih-pih" (short for pipinka, or bird in Czech) and the barking of a dog in a house down the street, then saying "pey" (short for pejsek, or dog). Very cool.

He still occasionally pretends to talk on the phone in a very loud, theatrical, whiny voice. I wonder who he gets that from. And he feeds animals, pictures of babies (as well as real babies) and objects pretend food and water. Children are amazing.