Monday, February 28, 2011

Santa Cruz

Eloise is over her jet lag. A few nights of wanting to be awake from 10pm to midnight made the adjustment a little rough for us but so did her complete disinterest in food for the entire airplane journey and the following two days. It made her a needy nurser and her mommy a bit concerned. All's well, however, she greedily is consuming the carrots and oatmeal and squashes I concoct for her. I bought beets at the farmer's market to prepare for her but luckily came to my senses before preparing it for her. Beet juice stains all over my clothes and hers doesn't sound fun.

Eloise remembers her Grandma and happily plays with her and asks her to pick her up. This makes me happy. I want my baby to know that her family loves her.
She contracted a brief case of stranger anxiety for about a week at the beginning of February. I was sure we were in for some tough times when we got home to a slew of new people for Eloise to meet. However, she recovered quickly and already reaches to have people hold her after only short interactions.

In fact, on the airplane, Eloise was making quite a scene at one point. We were just getting settled into our seats and I was holding her and standing until the last moment, I realized Eloise was looking around at the sea of faces behind us. A few people were smiling at her. She selected a couple and started flapping her arms, squeaking and crowing with her wide open mouthed smile. This delighted the row of people behind us and even a few further back. All of a sudden Eloise had captured a crowd of admirers. Her flapping and crowing increased. She was so excited, I had a hard time holding her and rested her on the back of my seat facing backwards. This exacerbated the delightful interactions. It was my favorite part of our trip home, watching the array of cultures represented by the people around us, all with smiles and shiny eyes, just because of my friendly child.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Courgette Cake yesterday, Tomato Relish today

Tomato Relish

3 lbs Tomatoes
1/2 lb. sugar
2 Tbsp curry
1 lb. onions
2 heaped Tbsp cornflour
1 dessert tsp. mustard

Cut tomatoes and onions into separate dishes and sprinkle with salt. Leave overnight. Pour off the brine. Barely cover with vinegar. Bring to a boil and add sugar and boil for 1/2 hour. Thicken with cornflour and a little more vinegar. Add curry and mustard

The day is fast approaching when I will not be able to sit Ello on a blanket with a selection of toys while I cook. She is mobile to about 2 feet radius, getting ready to run. In the last week she learned to pull herself to standing. A few days later, she figured out how to sit up on her own.....New things every single day. To top it all off, there are new smiles every hour.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

30 degrees in the shade (Celsius)

Well, summer here in New Zealand isn't exactly like summer in Santa Cruz. No fog here; bit more humid; 3 more tropical storms coming through than ever I've seen in a Santa Cruz summer. Cyclone Wilma hit us last weekend. Six inches of rain landed on us in a 12 hour period. We put on our foul weather gear that afternoon and went for a hike. We outfitted Tiffany, our Santa Cruz boat guest, with some foulies as well and insisted she come too. It's much less grumpifying to take hikes in the rain than to sit cooped up on a boat in the rain. Of course, the weather never stays around long. The next day was sunny again.

This past week, Brian has worked with few breaks on Eloise's bedroom. It's in the back of the boat next to our aft cabin, where the head used to be. It's got a pint sized bed that's cozy with a bright purple cordurouy lee cloth that I made for it. A fellow yachtswoman helped us give an appropriate name to this baby room aboard: The After Berth.

So much time aboard has not only skewed our humor but was keeping Brian away from surf. This week we're off to Ahipara for a camping/surfing trip. Then, only one week more and we return to Santa Cruz for six whole weeks. Hurray!