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In this Issue:
|So, newsletter #5 will come out some time around Epiphany[.]|
|—Paul Lee , Newsletter #4, December 24, 2004|
If your definition of "around" is "approximately five and one-third months", then we're right on schedule. Ahem. We've been occupied with a lot of "stuff". Tobias is at the center of most of our activities, but there is general housework stuff, shopping stuff, paperwork stuff, recorder lesson stuff, dance class stuff, fencing class stuff, traveling stuff, and hosting visitor stuff. Did we mention that all of this has to accommodate the baby? So the newsletter got short shrift.[1eng] Actually, it was so short as to have been non-existent.
There is no way we're going to be able to catch up on everything from the last five months, so I'm going to just touch on the highlights from the beginning of May 'till now. In future—and I hope, more timely—newsletters, we will catch up with another of the "missing" months, until we're all up-to-date. So without further ado....
Having missed nearly the entire first half of 2004, I am not going to try and catch up on everyone who's had birthdays since the last newsletter. However, we are making exceptions for four very special people, who have had their zero-eth birthday during the Great Hiatus. Happy birthdays to Paul, Annika, Trevor, and Elizabeth; and congratulations to Marina & Tibor, Karin & Sven, Monica & Ryan, and Jade & Syd.
Not the Reason for the Radio Silence
Karin wanted me to send out just this picture as an explanation of why we've not had any newsletters:
Of course, this is not our new baby; Karin is actually holding Elizabeth Polk, Jade and Syd Polk's new daughter. We visited them in the hospital when Elizabeth was only two days old, and got these pictures:
(That first picture is actually from two weeks later.)
Fencers Ready? Allez!
We attended a fencing tournament at West Valley College. While Karin fenced (yes, Karin is fencing, more on this in newsletter #9):
Of course I had to carry Tobias, since they don't make jackets designed to protect a baby in a carrier on your chest or back. Karin did well, coming in third in her pool of seven and ranked fifth overall.
After experiencing Muir Woods and Big Basin National Park with Karin's parents (newsletter #7, coming soon), we had a chance to join some friends for a hike/picnic at the Point Reyes National Seashore. After much walking and snacking:
we ended up at the Arch Rock:
which is actually what we're standing on. Unfortunately, the trail leading down to a point where the "arch" of the Arch Rock can be seen is very steep and not at all friendly to anyone trying to carry an infant. So we had to content ourselves with peeks down to the beach.
Down the Coast and Back Again
For Memorial Day Weekend (the last weekend in May, with Memorial Day always being on that Monday), we drove down to Santa Barbara to visit the Payatt family. We saw many wondrous sights on this trip, including a cat with unusual headgear, fantastic chalk paintings, a mare and her new foal, and some very confused statues:
We went wine tasting and picnicking just north of Santa Barbara:
visited the beaches:
and even made it to the partially restored Presidio in downtown Santa Barbara:
And as usual, Tobias got lots of attention:
On the way back, we followed the Pacific coast out to San Simeon, where we stopped by Hearst Castle[3usa] before continuing up Highway 1 to enjoy the scenary:
Not content to just rest after this six-day long "weekend" trip, we attended a pirates themed picnic on Angel Island the following weekend with our friends from PEERS. Alas ("Arrrrrr!"), we didn't get any pictures of the pirate costumes, but we did get some of us taking a break while waiting for the ferry:
The other two boys are two of my godsons, the Robert and Jonathan Chow.
Our friend Andy Arenson—last mentioned in these pages in December, 2003, when he came to Vienna with his wife and parents, and we met up for dinner at the Chinese vegetarian restaurant that would eventually host our own wedding banquet—came to town last week for a conference and stayed with us for a short visit. Not wanting to miss a photo opportunity, I got out the camera and handed Tobias to him:
What a difference five months make. Tobias now has two teeth:
pulls himself up to a standing position:
climbs over low obstacles:
and effectively chases after things:
He can also now sit up in a high-chair for feeding:
though certain foods still cause him confusion:
And Karin has built him a new house, out of premium cardboard:
Just how he got into and through all these stages will be discussed in more detail in the next four "catch-up" newsletters.
Like Mother Like Son
Everyone tells us that Tobias looks like Karin. Well now here's proof:
Until next time (which we hope to be next week),
-Tobias (finally asleep), Karin (finally getting to sleep), Paul (finally getting this sent)
 "Short Shrift": English expression, meaning "to give little attention to, to quickly dispose of something/someone". The German equivalent is "jmdn. kurz abfertigen".
 "Zero-eth Birthday": That is to say, they were born in the last five months.
 "Hearst Castle": The home of William Randolph Hearst, early 20th century American media magnate, who company owned many newspapers and a film studio. The movie Citizen Kane is a fictionalized (and somewhat unflattering) account of his life.
 "PEERS": The Period Events & Entertainments Re-Creation Society. See www.peers.org for details.
Except where otherwise noted, all contents © 2005, Paul T.S. Lee.
See my copyright page for specific permissions granted under the Creative Commons License.
"†" Image(s) © Elizabeth M. McGuire, 2005.