Nov 6 – Nov 23, 2016

Linus has been reading Make Way for Ducklings, so of course we went to the Public Garden.

Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

When he saw the statues, he made a beeline.

Boston Public Garden

I had forgotten how big they are! He looks rather shocked to see such a large duck.

Boston Public Garden

He’s discovered that putting his hands in his pockets keeps them warm. It’s also adorable.

Boston Public Garden

I love this one. She looks like, “Can you believe he climbed up there?!”

Boston Public Garden

Linus seems to have accepted that Mina is here to stay, and that she may turn out to be a worthy sidekick. He includes her in his plans now. He’ll say, “Mina, I want to go play in the cave.” That’s the pillow fort that Yen makes for them in the living room. Or, “Mina, we’re going to the park today.” Yesterday Yen was playing hide-and-seek with Linus, and Mina pointed out where Yen was hiding.

Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

Linus soon grew bored and took off in a new direction. We’d told him this was a park, but where were the slides?!

Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

Finally he found the next best thing: water. He spent probably ten minutes carefully hauling sticks from the nearest tree and tossing them in.

Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

Boston Public Garden

Isn’t she hilarious? Still just the four teeth!

Boston Public Garden

Here’s Linus dashing across the bridge to the Esplanade after we explained where the slides could be found.

Esplanade

This thing is insane – definitely beyond his age group. There’s no way to access this slide except to climb up the ropes. But he and Yen managed it while I stared in terror from below. I must say the payoff is worth it: the slide was incredibly long.

Esplanade

Esplanade

Esplanade

This is Arthur Fiedler of the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Linus was impressed by his giant nostrils.

Esplanade

Esplanade

Esplanade

Esplanade

The next weekend, we took a trip up to Lake Winnipesauke in New Hampshire. Our friend Betty is in Vietnam right now, which means she missed Thanksgiving. So we all gathered up there for an early turkey dinner. Here’s Linus checking out the lake, which is still beautiful this time of year.

Weirs Beach, Lake Winnipesaukee

Weirs Beach, Lake Winnipesaukee

Because we were with friends, we got to snap a rare family portrait! Too bad about the angle of the sun. But it’s recognizably us!

Weirs Beach, Lake Winnipesaukee

Weirs Beach, Lake Winnipesaukee

Check out Linus sitting in the little hallow behind us. No wonder his pants were so dirty.

Weirs Beach, Lake Winnipesaukee

There’s a railroad running next to the lake. That day there was a rally for the local Speeders club. We must have seen twenty of them zip by.

Weirs Beach, Lake Winnipesaukee

The next weekend, we headed over to Castle Island. It’s really the perfect spot for an outing. It’s right by the bay so you can toss rocks in the water, there’s a pre-Civil War fort for exploring, and finally really nice playground equipment. Look at this action shot with the rock in mid-air!

Castle Island

The final bonus of Castle Island? It’s in the flight path of Logan Airport, so you see giant plans landing over and over.

Castle Island

Castle Island

Castle Island

Castle Island

Mina likes to climb all over the equipment just like Linus now. She’s terrifyingly brave.

Castle Island

Poor little girl. Those three dots on her cheek are where she fell onto one of her toys.

Castle Island

Again with the pockets! He looks like a city kid trudging through familiar streets. I must say that both kids really seem to enjoy visiting the city.

Castle Island

Mina is an incredible eater. Anything we put down in front of her, she gamely gives it a shot. Here I’ve dissected my bowl of bún thịt nướng (noodles with meat), and she’s going to town.

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Here’s the fort I mentioned earlier! They both love to climb inside where we can’t see them, and then burst out to surprise us. Linus really doesn’t enjoy it without Mina inside with him.

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She’s pulling the same thing that Linus did at her age: climbing onto everything. I guess this thing is pretty stable? Sometimes they both climb up at the same time, which really scares me.

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She goes so hard that when she finally falls asleep, she just melts. Here she was actually sitting up, and then just folded down onto herself to sleep. Her little ankles are still crossed under her.

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Mina loves to be inside or under things. Here she’s hiding under the little table in the playroom.

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Their height difference really cracks me up. Linus is so teeny, but then there’s little Mina just coming up to his chest. How the heck is she going to grow that much in another year?!

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He’s so fashion forward with this accessories!

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Proving he’s still the best yogi in the house.

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Isn’t this funny? She looks like she just wore herself out playing. Whew!

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We were still giving them separate baths until we realized that Mina was just too big (and splashy) for her little baby bath. So we tossed her in with Linus one night, and now it has to be this way. Linus is very helpful. I must say the swimming lessons have made a huge difference in bathtime. They may not be learning how to swim yet, but they’ve both really gotten over their fear of having water on their faces.

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Here’s Linus saying goodbye to his little baby bath. The memories! I’m giving it to a family at work that’s expecting one of their own soon.

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Linus is obsessed with cookie. Remember his birthday tray and that he picked out a whisk? It seems to have been an accurate predictor. Every time I’m in the kitchen he yells (except in Vietnamese), “Linus cooks together with Mommy!” I’ve gotten good at inventing ways for him to help me. I have him pile things into bowls before I wash them, and he scoops the flour for me. It’s still rather terrifying when he stirs, though. I’ve actually been thinking about starting a separate blog with ideas for cooking with toddlers. In my infinite spare time, right?

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And meanwhile, there’s Mina hiding inside one of the cabinets. She fits perfectly.

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When Mina was born, she really wasn’t sure about Yen. We had a couple of months when she absolutely refused to let him hold her for more than a few minutes. She’s turned completely around and simply adores him now.

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This little cutie actually walking now! I’ll post videos with the next entry. She’s so tiny that it looks as if someone has wound up a doll and it’s tottering around.

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She loves pointing now, but it’s always like this: extend arm fully and slightly upward so your hand is even with your ear, and then bend your wrist down so your finger is level with the object in question. And… point!

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