Akihiro and Tomoki had a wonderful time at the shuyokai--see group picture below.
Here's Kenji in his clothes that I found while going through my parents stuff. I'm pretty sure my brothers wore this when they were babies. The little plaid pants have rubber lining on them. The two piece thing, though, wasn't nearly as practical as the onesies we have today, I noticed!
This bouncy seat (below) from Akito and Marie has been wonderful. Kenji likes to supervise Tomoki playing and follows us all around with his bright little eyes. He continues to be a very easy baby--Akihiro's mom said he is just like Akihiro was when he was a baby--content as long as he was fed and slept a lot. Kenji will really "talk" a lot if spoken to and it is so cute.
Grandpa Ito and Kenji
My in-laws happened to be at our house close to my birthday and brought me a cake. It says "Happy Birthday, Carrie" in Japanese. Tomoki enjoyed the fruit and the frosting, but not the cake!
We enjoyed a visit from Gen Shinozaki and his daughter Momoka--missed you, Eri! Tomoki warmed up to Momoka pretty well and they played together pretty good. He is a pretty shy guy and usually won't play with other children, so I was surprised--and pleased! I've noticed he does better with one other child versus a group.
Momoka loved Kenji.
Tomoki has been a very good big brother. Once Kenji started being more communicative and "cute", we noticed that he wanted to be held more, fed more, and generally acting like a baby (arrggh!). He even told me one day that he wanted to be a baby again! Things are a little better now, but there were a few weeks where my patience was severely tested and most of the time found wanting. This parenting responsibility, though many times joyful, is not an easy one. On the joyful side is Tomoki's frequent questions about heaven and God. The other day when we were working in the garden--he with his road grader (circa Ehnle's children's childhood) and me pulling weeds--he looked up in the sky at a beautiful cloud and said, is that heaven up there? Other questions include, "Does God and Jesus take ofuro (Japanese bath)"? He is certain that heaven has a sandbox, puzzles, and toys. On the lighter side, he likes telling Mama "don't worry, Mama" (usually if he has spilled something on his clothes or something), or if I am frustrated about something not going how I want it to go. I really do appreciate his advice! The other thing he says recently is "Mama, say, 'ma, iya'" I am probably butchering the Japanese of that, but it means, "oh well". Usually he says this if he wants me to give in and let him do something I have already told him he can't do. I have said that recently in regards to teeth brushing. After trying many different things, I have resorted to showing him a short you tube clip of excavators working while I brush his teeth--ma, iya!
My "multi-tasker"--cell phone, eating his snack, and looking at his Shimajiro teethbrushing mirror that says, "Ah, keko ah, ah, ah, ah....shukka, shukka, shukka, ...................." (you get the point).
The toy that comes out everyday, is the "ush". That is the power shovel. It can load anything and everything. Dried kidney beans are a favorite and can be found in any location on the first floor!
Grandma Ito got this cute little "jimbei-san" outfit for Kenji.
Here's a link to a video of our two boys http://youtu.be/P99_IhP4jLs
In other news, Akihiro got an ukulele for his birthday and has mastered This Little Light of Mine in Japanese!