Friday, December 28, 2007

Some photos from her garderie.

We bought a CD of some of the photos that the staff in the garderie (daycare) took of Laetitia and thought it will be nice to share some here.

Here's my darling looking oh so grown up.
Drinking during tea break time

Concentrating while working on her next masterpiece. I have to say she really enjoys drawing.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas Laetitia!

Well, she sure is very spoiled this Christmas. Just look at the family Christmas tree and you will understand why. In france, the tradition is to put a pair of your shoes under the tree so that "Pere Noel" (Father Christmas) will know where to place your presents. As you can see from the photo, the smallest pair of shoes has the largest amount of presents! And this is not inclusive of the presents waiting for her at home in Paris. I only took two of her smallest presents with us to save space in our luggages.

And this was early in the morning when she woke up and went upstairs to the main living room area where the Christmas tree is. She went straight for the presents. Well, she had a good time opening her presents which included a dining set, a CD player, a dough modelling set, a set of Winnie the Pooh self inking stamps, a tricycle and some pretty bibs.

Here are some pictures from last night (Christmas eve) as mentioned in the previous post. She had her pretty Christmas dress on and in the evening we went out to the town hall where they had a Merry-go-round and some other fun things going on.

Laetitia exploring the Christmas tree.

Enjoying her first Merry-go-round ride. Well, it is actually the second since the very first ride was with her papa but she was not exactly very keen and refused to sit on a horse. After that, I decided to go on the ride with her and it went so much better.

Just a lovely photo of us two.

A photo of her checking out her cousin Alexandre playing on the PSP.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Christmas Christmas.

We're in the south at my parents in law for the Christmas holidays. The last few days have been all about Christmas.

Last Thursdays was the Christmas party at Laetitia's garderie. We had a wonderful time meeting other parents, chatting with them and also took some time aside to thank all the staff at the garderie for taking good care of Laetitia while she is in their care. As a token of appreciation, we gave them a box of chocolates and Laetitia gave each of them a small tube of L'occitane hand cream (as an aside, I loved the cream so much I bought a tube for myself yesterday when I was shopping in Toulon).

Laetitia got to try many first food this Christmas. We gave her foie gras, some champomy and some homemade chicken liver terrine. She loved them all. I suppose there is still the smoke salmon and oysters but we'll hold back on the oysters for this year.

After her bath today, we changed her in her Christmas dress and she looks absolutely delightful. What a pretty little thing. I will definitely put some photos up. luckily, my mother in law tooks lots of pics as I totally forgot to bring my camera along. Laetitia have been enjoying her time spent with her cousin Alexandre too. All photos will be uploaded soon.


Saturday, December 8, 2007

Which Kitchen?

We want to get Laetitia a play kitchen for Christmas, on top of the numerous toys she will be showered with. There is such a wide variety it is causing me a headache. Of course there is also only a limited space in her room so I have to optimise the space and choose the perfect one.....

I love the Tefal range since it really mimics the kitchen wares that we have....

And then there are the more compact space saving ones like those below...

And then there are the ones made of wood.

Friday, December 7, 2007

At her grandparents.

We thought that we sent Laetitia down to her grandparents for a holiday but we might have been deceived. We received this email today from my mother in law.

"Vous pensiez que Laetitia était en train de passer des vacances chez papou et mamou. Erreur : elle est venue travailler mais, après l'effort, elle a le droit de se reposer un peu..."

(You think that Laetitia is having a holiday at her grandpa's and grandma's. Error: She is here to work but, after working, she is allow to rest a little...)

These photos were attached.

We joke. She is having lots of fun with my in laws. Here's another lovely pic of my darling enjoying herself in the park.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

My sweetest little thing.

Last night Laetitia was up in the middle of the night and refuses to go back to bed. We thought she might have had a nightmare as she woke up suddenly and cried really loudly. So, after Etienne spent an hour trying to get her to sleep and failed, it was my turn. I tried patting her (the usual) while she laid in her cot but it did not work. Eventually I took her with me on the spare bed and slept next to her. It took a long time before she finally settled down and went back to sleep.

Early this morning, she woke up, asked me to open the shutters and proceeded to kiss me on my both side of my cheeks and my lips while I pretended that I was still sleeping. OH, how my heart melted. Then she said, "Mummy kiss Laetitia." And shoved her cheeks towards my lips. So I planted some kisses on her face and then held her close in my arms while we lay in bed together. The bliss.

It's really sweet since she has now left Paris to go down south to her grandparents. I will not be seeing her for the next 10 days. Oh, I am so going to miss her. She is such a darling right now.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

First step to getting dress all by herself.

Today Laetitia decided that she did not want to wear her weetabix soiled pants anymore and she promptly took a new pair of pants that had been laying around on the sofa waiting to be sorted/folded/kept in the closet, took her dirty pants off and tried putting the clean ones on. She had some difficulties getting it up initially as she was sitting on the floor while she tried to put them on. I showed her that she had to stand up and pull it up and voila, that's it, she did it and then proceeded to taking them off and putting them on a few more times. Ha, I never knew that it was so much fun taking your pants off, running away from your mummy who is telling your the weather is too cold for you to go without pants and eventually putting them on again.

And to top it off, now she is very adamant about what is pretty and what is not and what she wants to put on for the day. I guess I am going to be in for some fun in the coming years.

The other thing worth mentioning is that today, she gave me a little fright. I left her in her cot to take my shower etc and at one point after I was all done, I can hear her telling me "Mummy, finish shower" and then demanding to come down from her cot. I ignored her for a while and then started hearing her throw her things in the bed onto the floor and I came into the room just as she was trying to climb out of the cot. One of her leg was over the cot, her body was off the mattress, halfway towards being out of the cot! She was basically in the process of throwing her body off the railing! I run towards her and put her firmly down on the cot and told her NO. And guess what, she tried it again. Sigh. I had a talk with Etienne tonight and we're going to look into a solution which would probably mean moving her out of the cot.

My little one is growing up quickly.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Mummy gone crazy with shopping.

So, what does a doting mummy do when she starts earning her own money? Buy more stuff for her little sweetie pie. I might not have as much time to go out shopping but then there is always the internet!

Clothes (as if she does not have enough!)

Shoes in size 23 (she is currently on size 22)

A table/chair set for her to sit and do her colouring etc. The table has a little built in container for holding crayons.

A bib cos it is cute

A coat hanger for her numerous coats.

And finally a sofa that I have been wanting to buy for her.
Some of the items will only arrive in December as they are out of stock at the moment but I guess it might be a good thing since then they could double up as Christmas presents. I do have many ideas for her Christmas present but then I'm sure she will not mind having a few different things. :p

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Messy little one

Here's my little greedy little chocolate (so far, I have only given her good quality dark chocolate such as Valrhona and Lindt and they are mixed into her weetabix) and cheese lover.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

My little singer.

As mentioned several times before in the blog, Laetitia loves to sing and today I finally managed to capture a video of her singing a repertoire of some of the songs she knows.

First translation mistake.

Laetitia is being raised bilingual for the time being (we will introduce Mandarin at a later stage) and unlike the norm for most children raised in such a setup, she started speaking at a rather early stage. She currently could speaks in complete sentences in both English and French although most of the time it is still short phrases. She also knows many words in both English and French and uses them frequently. Yesterday, she made her first little translation error. I have used the word "upside down" a lot with her. It usually happens when she takes a book to read, she used to hold it upside down and she still does it now but would gleefully look at me and say "upside down". In the same token, Etienne says "à l'inverse" to indicate that something is in the opposite direction, could be upside down, reversed etc. And it happened when her papa told her the table was "à l'inverse" and that she had to turn it and she looked at him and said "upside down" as in her mind, these two words was always used in the same context by Etienne and I. He had to try to explain to her that it was not the same in English and French.

Well, I am sure there will be more of such little "language" issues coming up as her vocabulary and speech ability increases.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Childcare options

Work has been keeping me away from blogging about my little pie. Any free time I have (when Laetitia sleeps) seems to be used on researching about childcare options. There are many different options of childcare and it is so hard to decide on what would be the best for Laetitia. Currently we have a combination of a part-time nanny and a daycare/creche. To me, this seems like a wonderful solution as she gets different modes of care (individual attention and collective care with fantastic socialisation with other children). The only issue bugging me is that I cannot be sure about how the individual care is going since Lae cannot actually communicate it yet. Well, she sort of does and that is what made me worried. She does not seem to want to be taken care of by our current nanny. Then again, my rational mind tells me that it might be due to the fact that everytime my little darling sees her nanny, she knows that I am leaving home for work. So when I asked if she wants to see her nanny, her answer is no, as she knows that would mean mummy is leaving.

In any case, my rational mind and instinct is saying to stick with the current setup for another month to see how things progress. I guess we could either send Laetitia to a full time creche or find another nanny if I want a dual childcare system.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

My little vain pot.

The weather is turning cold but since today is bright and sunny, we decided that we should go out shopping.

I recently bought a cream coat for Laetitia and it was a good time to put it on her today. One thing I realised recently is that she is starting to enjoy being dressed in pretty clothes. She would look at the mirror and point to herself and say "pretty"! Or, she would pick out some clothes and tell me that they are pretty. And she is also beginning to enjoy wearing hats. I totally have a girlie girl on my hands.

And so, apparently she approves of the clothes I put on her today. After dressing her, just before we stepped out, she was looking at herself in the mirror approvingly and calling herself "pretty"! It was funny when she started to give her reflection a couple of kisses.

And this is taken just outside our apartment.

And here is just a couple more photos of the past week.

Enjoying her biscuit while watching Maurice Sendak's "Little Bear" DVD.

We're making sure she helps out with the chores at home. :p

Thursday, October 18, 2007

On the road to recovery

My poor baby was very sick over the weekend. It started last Thursday night with the both of us running a fever and climax on Saturday with a horribly high fever of almost 41 degrees. We had to give her three baths during the day to bring the fever down and when finally in the evening it continued to spike to more than 40 degrees, we bit the bullet and called the Pediatre SOS number to have a doctor come to our place to check her out. It turned out she had a slight ear infection/cough/running nose and a gastro. She was prescribed numerous medication and her very doting papa went out in the middle of the night to search for a 24h pharmacy to get the medicines.

She is now finally getting better and is well on the road to recovery. Thank you God. We did take a couple of photos and I will attempt to put them on the blog this weekend. It's crazy how little time I seem to have now that I am working.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

First week Mummy went to work.

Laetitia started to go to the daycare (halte garderie) from 8:15am to about 6pm last Monday. It was an interim solution to the temporary work that I found. I found a three and a half weeks temp job and for the first week, Laetitia was able to have a spot in the daycare for the mornings to supplement her existing afternoons sessions there. However for the next two weeks, she will be taken care of in the morning by a babysitter. She is someone who has taken care of Laetitia before and is very experience with looking after children.

In the last week, everything went very well in terms of her day in the daycare. I would prepare her lunch the night before and they would heat it up and give it to her around noon. I was told that she was very independent and insist on feeding herself all the time. It was very reassuring for me to know that she is able to handle full day collective care very well. The next two weeks will be a test on how a combination of a part time nanny and collective care works.

Laetitia seems to not feel too much the difference of me working vs me staying home with her except on Friday night when I went out and Etienne was responsible for picking her up from the daycare and her night routine. I was told she kept asking for me and when they entered the apartment, she went "Cou Cou Mummy" a few times. So SWEET.

And of course, the final decision making would also come after this temp project ends. The big question of how much I enjoy going back to work vs the cost/quality of childcare possible and the trade-off between working and being home with my daughter. To add to the complex equation, I have to think about how much this affects Etienne as well. The last week that I was working has additional stress on him as well since he was responsible for helping send Laetitia to the daycare in the morning. He has mentioned a couple of times how nice it was when I didn't work. Knowing him, he was not trying to put any pressure on me regarding the decision to work or not. The other option I have is to go back to school (I am considering either doing a Masters in Marketing or a French language and civilisation course). We'll see how things pane out in the end. For now, I am enjoying the adult interactions and just the whole different experience of being a working mumy.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

A few current pics.

There has been a lack of photos updated recently and I finally managed to capture a couple of pictures over the weekend.

It's getting cold in Paris with the temperature dropping to less than 20 degrees. We had to make sure that she is warmly dressed when we step out of the house. This was Laetitia walking along the street of Paris.

During one of her favourite activity time, reading. She is seen here enjoying Dr. Seuss's ABC: An Amazing Alphabet Book!

And playing dress up with my summer hat

And finally a pic with her mummy. Please pardon the slightly runny nose of my little chou.

A letter to my 18 months old!

My most dearest darling,

OMG! You are 18 months old, one and a half year old. I am at a lost for words (momentarily). It is both a scary and wonderful feeling. It amazes me how much you have grown and at the same time, fills me with some uneasiness on how time just seems to be slipping by and before I know it, you'll be a teenager or an adult. From a helpless baby, you are now a babbling toddler who could
almost count 1-10 in English and French, go through your alphabets and express your views with "don't want", "No", "please Mummy" (usually said with a BIG smile) and have little conversations with me. You are also become a fabulous dancer and singer.

The last 18 months have been a roller coaster ride but with much more ups than downs. Aside from becoming a first time mummy, I also had to cope with being in a strange new place (not unlike you) and learning a new language (again I'm sure you are experienced in this too). At times I worry if I am a good enough mum or I question myself in reference to my "lack" of motherly instincts considering that I started leaving you in the daycare from the tender age of 6 months old. Did I put you through much trauma in letting you cry either in the arms of "strangers" while I walked away to enjoy my afternoons by myself or when I leave you in the cot to sleep? Was I being an alpha "kiasu" mum when I started showing you flash cards when you were less than a year old?

All these insecurities I have are eradicated when I see what a joyous and happy little girl you are. People are constantly telling me how you are always smiling and seems to be a delightful child. I am so proud of you, of your cheerful personality, of all your milestones and the simple fact that you are such fun to be with. I enjoy telling people how you would say "Bravo Mummy" when I finish singing you a song or finish saying the alphabets! I am smiling from ear to ear when people tell me just how adorable you are. I love it when you try to kiss me on the lips (though I am pretending to look disgusted and give you my cheeks instead) or when you refuse a kiss from me. I enjoy our current game where you would run into my open arms and I would lift you off the ground. As much as I complain about you going "Mummy's here" in the middle of the night when you are woken up from your sleep, I am secretly smiling to myself and feeling all important.

I enjoy the last 18 months we spent together at home and I am apprehensive that it is going to change. Though it does seems timely that I should start a new full time job on Monday I know for a fact that I want to strike a balance between working and spending time with you. I love the conversations (though somewhat limited right now) we have, the laughters that we share, the games we play, the books we read together, all the moments we spend with each other and as a family. I want to continue to build this wonderful relationship we have.

I want you to know that I love you very much and so does your papa. You are our little darling and always will be.

Love always,

Friday, September 21, 2007

Bonjour Bear Bear, ça va?

Heehee. I was putting Laetitia down for her nap in her cot a little while ago when she pick up one of her stuff toys, a bear, and said to it, "Bonjour Bear Bear, ça va?" So sweet and polite it made me smile. Then she continued to babble to it. Ah.... my little one is so adorable (if I may say so. :p).

Monday, September 17, 2007

ABC time.

I realised I have been posting less recently and that is because I do not spend as much time with Laetitia anymore. She is off to daycare all week from 1pm to 7pm. She is doing well at daycare, eating her teabreak all by herself, taking naps and playing nicely with her friends.

During the mornings that we do spend together, we would mostly play with her toys and do some educational activities such as going through some flashcards. Yes, I know, she is not even one and a half. Well, we do it for fun and she enjoys it too. And when she is not interested, I would not push her to continue. Anyways, this is taken this morning after we finished going through the cards once. I thought, oh, I should totally record this down. However, she was not as interested the second time round but we managed to go through about 1/4 of the alphabets. You can see her kissing Brunie, her little "goggie". It's fun hearing her say "googie" and "elephanhan".

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Laetitia and famous people

So, Laetitia did some time travel with her papa and visited Mr. Rodin. She took a photo with him while he was in the process of creating his sculptures.

Then she time travelled back to take a photo with Mr. Jacques Chirac. Yes, of course I am kidding. We just spent the afternoon in Musée Grévin (the wax museum in Paris)

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Laetitia and friends.

I was sorting out some of the photos we took in Singapore and came across some that I feel would be lovely to have on the blog. Just a few of Laetitia and the other toddlers she came into contact with during the holiday (they are all my friends kids). She is quite a sociable child and most of the time, it is not difficult to leave her alone to play with other children. I say most of the time as there are occasions when other children will make her more upset than usual but it is really quite rare.

So here's my little pie and her friends.

And here is my little "gourmand" enjoying her crab. She got to taste many different new food and fruits in Singapore including crabs, prawns, durians, rambutans, mangoteens and many others that I probably forgot.

Monday, September 3, 2007

A love for singing?

It's been a couple of weeks from the last update. I've been on the road, Florence from 26th to 29th August and then on the 29th when I got back into Paris, I was off to Futuroscope for a two day trip to celebrate my fourth wedding anniversary. After a night at home, we left again on 31st for the south of France to my parents in laws. All in all it's been a busy summer. In the meantime, Laetitia spent the week with her grandparents. I was told that she was very well behaved and loves to sing!

Apparently when she goes into the car seat for a ride, she would start singing to herself. I witness this over the last couple of days. She might not know all the words but she sure is humming and singing away. And whenever I sing to her, she is always asking for an "encore". Hah! She will probably be the only person asking for an "encore" of my out of tune singing performance. :p Let's hope she does not pick that up from me.

Aside from the singing, as I had already known since we were holidaying in Singapore, she seems to be extra fussy with me around. Don't misunderstand, she is still a cutie pie but it's harder to put her to bed and of course she whinges more. I seriously have to try to work this issue out.

Anyways, since there has been a lack of photos lately, here's some.

Enjoying the sun in the south of France

Sharing her toast with her mummy.

Two of the photos from the photoshoot in Singapore