Saturday, December 26, 2009

Christmas Day 2009

We had a beautiful Christmas day. Great weather, great food, great time with family.

Keet opened presents for the first time. He'd open one, then play with it (or the box it came in) and we'd have to try to convince him to open something new. We opened presents at home, then headed to the Grumpas for more! Yikes. Overload for sure.

Such a lucky boy. So much to be grateful for. So many blessings.

I feel the need to create new traditions for our family. Celebrating Christmas devoid of a religious context feels superficial and commercial at best. Although the time together with family is valuable, the meaning of Christmas is lost to a child without a spiritual context. It's just about Santa, presents, and sweets otherwise. I guess that's where the value of making gifts comes into play, along with service in general. It is an adventure to untangle the social norms and dysfunctions in an effort to rejuvenate the culture with meaning and aligned actions and ethics. That feels to me to be as much as a mother's responsibility as anything. We either repeat the traditions we know due to a deep love and respect of them, or fear of the repercussions for abandoning them. I am not much one to uphold the status quo for convenience, nor do I believe in reprisals. I do fear being embedded in a system I don't believe in. I'd rather renew or revamp a tradition than bow to one that has lost its meaning...

So, here's my idea for Winter Holiday 2010. As the phenomenon of Christmas is unavoidable in America (we do live only miles away from North Pole after all!) we will expand our idea of the holiday for a bit of balance. We can celebrate the Winter Solstice with a day of simplicity. Honoring the darkness. Fasting. Taking a moment to reflect. By comparison, Christmas will be a celebration of the light!


P.S. Speaking of light, notice the nice crisp photos! No more iphone photos, Dada got Mama a nice new digital camera! YEAH!!!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Keet and Kyle at Christmas 2009

Keet and his buddy Kyle are enjoying Chrismas time! Kyle is already starting to cruise at not quite 9 months, and Keet went from a few steps last Sunday to walking from room to room at our house! He still has to pull himself up on something in order to get to his feet, but once there he's a little toddler all the way.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Steps! 1-2-3!

He had taken a step here, a step there, been tricked into it once around the end of October, but yesterday was the first day that he stood by himself and initiated a step, then another! Straight to Da-da at his art opening at the Annex.

Keet loves a crowd.
Mom jumped up and down with joy.
He took another two steps this morning too.

There goes my baby. Now I have a toddler!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Keet is ONE Year Old!!!!!

Unbelievable! Keet is already One Year Old! How did it go so fast? It's somehow impossible to imagine that much time has slipped by. At the same time, I've probably aged five years in this one!

This morning we took pictures, (coming soon), opened presents, and measured his height on the wall. He grew about 9 inches this year! Of course, Keet is very fun and engaging. He already communicates via sign language. His signs so far are:

Flower (he just showed me this one tonight while reading his book!)
What/Where (this may be more of a gesture than an ASL sign, but it's pretty universally understood - look for it at the end of the video!)

I may have seen a moon too, but I'm not sure.

Vocally, he's imitating lots of sounds and words, in both Spanish and English. "mama" and "dada" are spoken as is "ba" (for ball). Today I heard an "ag-ha" along with the "Hot" sign as he pointed to his hot water vaporizer. A sort of mix of languages but it totally works!

My beautiful son. We are so blessed.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Getting some Shutter-eye

Our self-portrait in our hipster shirts Dada brought from NYC

Wild gods

Or is that dogs?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

First Family Halloween

We took Keet to the UAF Wood Center Halloween Party where they were taking pictures of all the kids. Akka sent the cute bear costume. I figured wearing my PJs would just make him my teddy bear. Someone asked us if we were the tired parents! Click on the photo for a large one!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

The cutest pumpkins in the patch

Keet and Kyle (Nanny Nicole's son) playing. Kyle has Keet's foot!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Fairbanks airport

We are stuck here trying to get out. Forest fires have grounded air
traffic. Keet doesn't mind if we stay here or goto New Mexico!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

More from Point Hope, Alaska: Tikigaq

We had such a beautiful time in Point Hope (Tikigaq), July 13-15.

My friend Angie took all the photos, and just gave me a disk of them. Here's a classic of "the cute look" that Keet gives:
He was flirting with the lady at the back of the plane for nearly an hour. He was so excited to be flying! Definitely his mother's son.

Lily and I gave the cousins a bath. This is Luke and Keet, cleaning up!
Steve Oomituk gave us a tour of the old town site. This is a typical whale bone sod home. The community moved from these types of houses in 1976. Most of them also had electricity, and some were even wood framed, but then were too cold so sod would be put on the outside for insulation.

(Keet's asleep on my chest under the coat)

We did actually get some work done too, and showed the archival films, as well as screened the film I shot in Point Hope, "Honoring the Gift." The films were very well received. It was a very busy week in Point Hope, with lots of visitors in town for the Economic Development Summit, and the Red Oil Community presentations.

Keet was never for want of company, as every little girl in town seemed to learn his name and want to wisk him away. It was hard to leave...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sunday, July 5, 2009

New Camera

Video again...

I'm testing out this new camera, and of course, Keet gets the first exposure to it. What a lovey boy! Even with a wide angle lens that makes him seem rounder than he really is in his extreme close up. He's almost 8 months, and is changing all the time. Can you see the teeth?

We've had a bit of nursing drama. I yellped and he cried. We both were afraid to continue there for a moment. I realized after the first bite that it was a question of mutual trust. We got through that. I trust his baby instincts very much, he's a very smart baby.

This past weekend was a blast. We spent time with "Auntie MacKiki," visiting from San Francisco. For the 4th we went to ever amusing left-wing theatrical 4th of July Ester Parade where a mock Sarah Palin marched amid signs saying "Hockey Mom - Get the Puck Out!"

After enjoying the 20 minute parade we joined in at the community picnic, and afterwards went for a dip in the Chena Lake with friends.

Keet walked (assisted with two fingers) straight into the water about waist deep. Brave soul.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

My buddy Grey

This was taken outside of the UA Museum of the North with our friend Angela Linn and her baby Grey. Mr. Grey is a few months younger than Keet, but a strapping young lad!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Mama and I in the Garden

This year we finally got a garden planted. House is built, so now we can enjoy the labors of the earth. Daka built the beds, and our good friend Heather ("Hehe") came and donated most of the plants and know-how. Garden went in late, but it's in and growing!

Keet's sporting the new Ergo Baby Carrier,which rocks! So much easier to garden without worrying just where the boy has gone to and what he has in his mouth!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Friday, June 19, 2009

Stair Master

Went up 2 steps, no sweat.

Summer walk

Finally got done editing my sea-ice DVD and we went for a walk! This
is the pipeline actually. It's buried here. Strange to think my
favorite trail is carrying tens of thousands of gallons of oil beneath
me. Keet slept the whole way to the hill in the background and beyond,
then back again.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

7 Months Old: Video Time!

It's so hard to believe that this little one is already 7 months old! Soon I'll be saying 7 years, then 17... Time has flown so quickly.

Last week Keet officially learned to crawl. He had been taking tentative motions towards that effect, but was pretty timid. We have these play mats all over the house now, as he was doing real well sitting up, but would still knock himself over now and again. Just 2 weeks ago I set those up around the house. Today, they're irrelevant as he just crawls right off them.

Da-ka got the drop-off in the Studio sealed up, and we moved all the electrical stuff (computers) out of reach, so it feels pretty safe in the studio. He rolled off the bed once already (all 6 inches from the floor, but still a scream) - so putting him on the bed to hang out while we get dressed is over. Yup. It's a whole new world.

He's also a super-babbler these days, but yesterday I believe he made the first true associated word. We were at the Turtle Club with Grandma Beth, and Keet was passed to Da-ka. Keet said "Dada" at that moment. He hadn't said a thing all meal until then!

Here's a bit of video of him in "Bababa" mode. His newest sounds are all reminiscent of static. A lot of guttural "QKQKQKQK" and gurgles that don't exist in our language, but would be quite natural in Klingon I belive.

(I've uploaded two videos - same thing. One very tiny for Emah - the other bigger for the rest of us! Let me know which is easier to see, A or B).

KEET CRAWLS, BABLES - Video A 640 x 480

KEET CRAWLS, BABLES - Video B 480 x 320


Sunday, June 7, 2009