Last Friday, I picked up Tesla at school, skipping the After School Program so we could have our 1:1 play date. I decided we'd go to the City Hall since it's rather fancy and open to the public.
We went to the records office and looked up our house, seeing the kitchen remodel permit, and confirming so far, there have been no public complaints logged against the property : )
There were maybe 5 or 6 groups doing their wedding pictures. We then climbed the stairs, higher than I'd ever been, and we witnessed a wonderful actual ceremony going on, where two men exchanged their vows. When done, the whole hall erupted in cheers. While I don't know them of course, I was moved. And I tried to explain the significance to Tesla since gay marriage is such a recent right, but she didn't really get it. Gay couples are normal for her.
We then went around and took fancy pictures of each other.
Then we went and had apple pie a la mode!
Aila carries around a backpack to preschool, to home, then to her bed. She doesn't need a backpack, but she likes to be like her sister and friends at Rosa Parks who all have backpacks. It's heavy. I've known it's full of, shall we say, various things. Today, I got GranMarie to video the excavation of Aila's backpack.
Driving the girls home from school the other day, Tesla's conversation went to what happens to me when she is an adult. I told her I'd be her mother forever. She asked what would happen if she died? I replied I'd still be her mother, no matter what, and she would be in my heart. And in fact, always, both Tesla and Aila are in my heart, close to me.
Aila then blurted out from her car seat, "we're NOT in your heart. We're right here. We're sitting back here."
Right here, right now.
Today was Nihonmachi Little Friends' big performance day. For the first time, both Tesla and Aila are dancing. But, since Aila is a preschooler, I was supposed to drop Aila off 2 hours after dropping off Tesla. So, Aila and I went to brunch!
Dav is prepping the video of Aila's adorable dance, and Tesla's energetic awesome dance. Having 2 kids in the performance was fun!
This past Sunday, Tesla participated in a Japanese speech contest where she spoke about things she likes all in Japanese. She practiced over a month every day, repeating until she was comfortable. We are so proud of her.
She wrote her speech in English, then her teacher put it into Japanese. There were some new words for her. When she did the whole speech for the Regenbogens and Jessica, and they wanted to know what she said, so she interpreted it into English. I was so happy to see her thinking of her speech in Japanese, then sentence by sentence repeating it in English, so I know she really understood what she was saying. I feel very lucky that Tesla is at Rosa Parks Elementary, being taught Japanese everyday. While not immersion, I could't have asked for better where Tesla really seems to enjoy and connect with Japanese : )
This year Tesla pretty much knew how to set it up, but the difficulty was keeping Aila's toddler hands off of the delicate dolls. As much as they are "dolls" they are very expensive and made with such details that they are little art pieces.
T made sakura mochi and origami hina dolls at school.
Aila's valentines to us family. She's so proud to write her name. Any time she spots an "a" it's A for Aila to her : ) I like how in this family portrait, I'm the tallest!
Her note cracks me up. To Daddy: "Thank you for working, I like to go to work with you." Except she's never been to work with him. And for me, in Japanese, "Mama, chicken, broccoli, spicy, thank you!" I love this verbal but not really logical age of 3. She lives in such a rich imaginary world.
Tesla has been taking gymnastics lessons. We watched a movie about Gabby Douglas, then the kids wanted to play gymnastics. Tesla got her doll out to do cool jumps and tricks, while Aila got her swimming suit on and did what she could on our furniture. Here is Tesla teaching her a move, then Aila reenacting.
(Notice the holes in our walls. It's our house-wide insulation project which is worth while, but geez, we have holes everywhere on our relatively newly painted walls. You can see the shoji room divider that is trying to hide a wall of plastic that keeps construction dust out.)
Now that I have more time, I try to pick up T at the end of school some Fridays, skipping after-school program. It's a nice snippet of time, when Aila isn't around since she's still at preschool, and I'm not tempted to do other tasks. We're out in town to have fun. Today, we went to Coit Tower. I hadn't been there forever. It was touristy, but a short and beautiful visit.
Then we had ice cream, picked up Aila, and went home.