June 29, 2004

What are we going to do? She can move!

No big travels this week. We used the weekend for a well deserved rest. Tyler has been getting us up very early and we were up late talking to Tiffany's family about our new niece, Lexi Shipley.

Brooke moved off her playmat this week. She was apparently headed for Tyler's road carpet. She doesn't move very fast, but it won't be long before she will. We are afraid that Tyler won't take kindly to Brooke playing with his toys.

She is mobile

Brooke clapping (video, may take some time to download)

Don't they both look big? Brooke can sit up by herself now. It is surprising to go get her out of her crib and find her sitting up waiting for us.

Big like you

Brooke turned 9 months old this week.

Nine months old

It's fun to watch Tyler play with his bear again. Tyler feeds his bear breakfast, changes his diaper and puts him in bed for a nap. It is especially funny to hear Tyler talk to his bear the same way we talk to him. The bear has even had a couple of time-outs. Hmmm, I wonder where Tyler got that idea.

Taking the bear for a ride

Tyler has two modes of play: organized and chaotic. We prefer the first, but the second is much more common. Tiffany loves it when he lines up his toys. There's plenty of chaos in the background though.

The line-up


"Someone was knocking on my window." - Explaining why he got out of bed during a nap. Remember, we live on the 14th floor.
"What happened to your forehead?" - Tiffany raised her eyebrows at Tyler.
"The stair likes to fall me." - Translation - I sometimes trip on the bottom step.
"I want my girls to come upstairs." - How Tyler talks to his mother and sister.
"It's little for me." - Explaining why he needed to eat Tiffany's half-eaten ice cream cone.
"Eating the leaves on the trees." - Eating broccoli.
"Vehicle" - How he refers to cars. Very proper.

Posted by sjbowden at 10:13 PM

June 22, 2004

Fun in the sun

Tyler has kept us very busy this past week. He still gets up early, sometimes as early as 5 am, but at least now he does't wake us up. Instead, he gets into trouble.

For example:

One morning he was standing on a chair going through drawers looking for toys.
Another day he left the fridge door open for almost an hour.
Yet another, he helped himself to yogurt and tried to eat it with a fork.
And finally, he re-arranged the couches in the family room.

Tyler is also our little engineer. He took apart and put back together the drain assembly of the bathtub. He also dismantled the showerhead on the hose in our bathroom. He loves watching his dad fix things and wants to play with real tools too.

Tyler learned that toys can be dangerous. He was playing with a Slinky and it snapped back and hit his face. He had red welts on his face for over an hour.

Slinky damage

On Friday, we went to the beach. It was a little too hot for us, so we didn't stay long. Brooke kept pulling on the beach blanket, trying to reach the sand. Fortunately we were able to prevent her from eating any. Tyler had fun in the sand, but he refused to go anywhere near the water because it was too loud. He stayed on the beach blanket while we took the picture below.

Brooke and Tiffany on the beach

Tiffany made Scott a card for Father's day and bought him a book at the mall. She also baked him his favorite cupcakes. Tyler kept asking when Scott was going to go to Father's Day.

Father's Day

Tyler told us that he wanted to take his bear for a walk. He told his bear that he would have to wear shoes outside, and so the bear ended up with Tyler's sandals.

Taking the bear for a walk.

Brooke is still an angel. She puts up with a lot from her brother, but has begun fighting back. She has pulled out two chunks of his hair, by accident, when Tyler got too close. We think she is almost mobile. She moves around a lot on her play mat. She used to hate being on her stomach, but now she loves it. We wonder how long it will be until she crawls. She loves her tummy so much that she flips to her tummy as soon as we lay her in her crib.

Brooke on her tummy.


"Daddy, can I change you on this ear?" - While talking on the phone to Scott at work.
"Help me play by myself." - Oxymoron
"He looks tired. First, I'll eat and then I'll put him to bed." - About his teddy bear.
"We don't have to be sad or grumpy." - Tiffany was just exasperated.
"You're the cutest mommy." - After Tiffany told Brooke that she is the cutest baby.
"I miss the mall." - Translation: I want a toy.
"Can I play with that when I'm a baby again?" - About one of Brooke's toys.
"We're having a hard day." - Well, yes it was a hard day.
"Comfty" - Comfortable

Posted by sjbowden at 9:36 PM

June 15, 2004

Growing up

Brooke had a stressful week. We finally figured out how to get her
vaccinations. Our doctor wasn't able to get the vaccinations directly so we
went to a Tipat Halav (Drop of Milk) clinic. At the clinic, they take care of
vaccinations and medical checkups for infants regardless of insurance for
about $60 a year. Unfortunately, she also got her second tooth, so she
wasn't her happiest this week. We did manage to get a cute picture.

Little Ladybug

We had another branch picnic. It was at a park, called the Swiss forest,
overlooking the Sea of Galilee. It was a beautiful setting and beautiful
weather for a picnic. Of course, Tyler's favorite part was playing in the
sand. We saw him pouring sand into a shoe, so we went to stop him and we
discovered that he was filling a shoe of one of the other kids.
Fortunately, everybody just laughed.

Tyler playing at the park

Tyler looks a lot older with his new haircut. Tiffany was sad to cut off his curls, but it needed to be done.

Tyler and his Sabbath best


"I want to play dot-com." - Tyler had fun with chevroncars.com.
"Daddy, your blankie's for to keep you happy." - A profound truth.
"Mommy, how was your talking?" - After Tiffany got of the phone.
"Brookie, I'm not a toy to play with. Mommy, I'm a boy, not a toy!" - Brooke was grabbing Tyler's shirt.
"The night of the book." - The last page of a book was a picture at night.
"Silly TV" - The TV was silly because it turned off during a power outage.
"Is this the right hand? Then this is the right fruit snack." - Deciding whether to eat the fruit snack in his left or right hand.
"It's pretending ice" - The white valve of the sippy cup was floating in the water.
"Remind me when I want a snack." - Too busy playing to remember to eat.
"Mommy, we're missing a person. Daddy!" - While Daddy was at work.

Posted by sjbowden at 9:44 PM

June 8, 2004

Taking our zoo to the Zoo

This week was much less hectic than previous weeks. We didn't go on any trips. We we just busy with work and two small children. Our landlord decided to put in air conditioning, which we are very excited about. When the installers left, everything was coated with a layer of dust from drilling through the concrete walls. We spent the evening dusting, sweeping and mopping.

Sunset over Haifa Bay, as seen from our family room window.

Brooke is getting better at eating "real" food. She no longer gags on Cheerios and she loves applesauce and squash. She even drinks water from a sippy cup (with a little help).

A pair of Cheerios eaters.

We looked out the window on Friday afternoon and Haifa Bay was covered with sailboats and motorboats with a submarine in the center. It was a beautiful weekend.

Crowded Friday afternoon on Haifa Bay (through the telescope).

Friday morning, we went to the Haifa Educational Zoo. We are not sure how it is any more educational than a normal zoo, but we all had fun. Tyler enjoyed seeing the animals at a safe distance. He kept forgetting what to call flamingos. He was very impressed that the flamingos could lay their heads on their backs and stand on one leg while they sleep.

Scott, Tyler and the "pink things."

We saw lots of animals: tigers, leopards, camels, ibex, gazelles, deer, wolves, bears, monkeys, lemurs and many kinds of birds. We got to go in the lemur cage, which was fun. Tyler especially enjoyed seeing the baby lemurs.

Scott, Tyler and a bear.


"Brookie, get your feet off the table!" - while Brooke was sitting on Tiffany's lap at the dinner table.
"The End" - after a long drink of water.
"You have hair on your face, you need to wash it off." - To the air conditioning installer.
"Mommy, the sun got little." - Looking at the sun set over the Mediterranean.
"The down-side is under the water." - Still looking at the sunset.

Posted by sjbowden at 9:18 PM

June 1, 2004

Masada and the Dead Sea

We enjoyed the Dead Sea so much, we decided to return during the Shavuot Holiday (Pentecost). Our first time was really just a pitstop, so we didn't have time to see the sights near the Dead Sea. We were anxious to visit Masada, the sight of Herod's mountaintop palace. It was later used as a hideout by Jewish Zealots during the Jewish Revolt until the Romans captured it in 73 A.D. We decided that taking the cable car to the top was preferable to an hour hike with two small children on a switchback trail called the Snake Path.

Cable car at Masada

The girls in the cable car

Tyler wandering around Masada

Here you can see the remains of one of the many Roman camps built at the base during the siege of Masada.

Roman camp outside Masada

Sunset over the Dead Sea

This time we managed to get a picture of us floating in the Dead Sea. It is a very interesting experience. There are so many minerals in the water that it feels very odd. Once you get out a little ways you can't even touch the bottom because it's too buoyant. The Dead Sea is the lowest spot on Earth, 411 meters (1348 feet) below sea level.

The Dead Sea is known for its therapeutic benefits. Our hotel had a spa, so Tiffany was able to pamper herself with a facial treatment.

Floating in the Dead Sea

Ein Gedi, a natural spring along the Dead Sea, is the site where David hid from Saul, as described in 1 Samuel 24. It is filled with ibex. Ibex can climb up very steep mountainsides and are very curious. They came close to the path and watched us intently. Fortunately, they didn't mind us being there. We had to watch our heads though, their quick climbing sent a few rocks our way. We went on a half hour hike that took us past a few waterfalls, a welcome sight in the middle of the Desert.

Ein Gedi ibex

One of the waterfalls at Ein Gedi


Scott - "I haven't decided yet."
Tyler - "I'll decide for you."

"So they won't blow away and fall into the tub." - Explaining why he was playing with his bath toys outside the tub.

"I drew a camel kneeling down and praying" - It just looked like a squiggle to us.

"The dogs are going home to play cars with their daddy." - Sure.

"Are there kelevim in the elevator?" - Kelevim is Hebrew for dogs.

"Go, leave now" - when we left Tyler with friends to go to a work dinner.

"That mommy is wearing a skirt" - Tyler has some obsession with skirts. He always wants Tiffany to wear one.

"Are we walking on their heads?" - When we explained that we have neighbors below us and he shouldn't stomp around the apartment.

Posted by sjbowden at 8:04 PM