His 'n His

Brothers in stereo. Check out the custom Sony (or are they?) monitors.

Clowning Around

This is Matthew's "beebee" (about the height of a pinky finger). He hugs Mr. Clown to his chest, pats his back, and burps him.

Mirror Image

Look at me!
Joel just adores gazing at himself in his rainforest mirror.

Car Creations

Matthew made these all by himself, and we're pretty proud of him! Go, Bean! Without any input from us, he chooses the colors, the shapes, everything, and puts it all together to show us later. I'm always surprised when he brings me a new one that he's created. They're just so amazing!

UK Grandpa built quite a few really nice ones while he was here, and Matthew watched and learned under his tutelage. Now he's driving on his own, and look what he can do...

(Stephen said he made yet another one this morning, put that yellow curvy bit on the front, and called it a deeyah - aka digger.)


The most recent creation. UK Grandma brought some fun supplies when she came (colored paper, glue, etc.) and bought some animal stickers while here, so the Maffaboo-artist-bean made this collage the other day for your delectation. Enjoy!

The Latest Verbalage

Matthew's vocab is just too cute for words (you betcha, pun intended)!

His most recent:

  • "boobah" = bubbles
  • "ella" = elephant
  • "whee!" = when we're driving down a hill, running down a hill, etc. (you get the picture)
  • "hee hee hee" = imitating my deliberately silly laugh
  • When I ask if he can say "red" (or any color), the answer is always "lellow"
  • When asked if he can say Joel, his answer is "beebee" [baby]
  • His latest car/truck sound: "mamamamama"
  • Matthew always has to say bye-bye to everything and everyone before he heads for bed (we think he's just stalling, but it's pretty funny)

Next time, I think I'll post his new words and make you guys figure 'em out! Good luck!

Diaper Update

Just for posterity's sake, let me elaborate on my diaper post from earlier today: I did a grand total of EIGHTEEN (yes, I really did keep a count). That was five for the Maffaboo and thirteen for Joel Bean.

Do I get any kind of award? A hug at least?

(I did I did I DID just get a huggy from the hubby. Yea for me!)

People Person

Matthew's really missing Mimi and Pop (what he calls all four grandparents) and keeps saying their names over and over again. Lately he also loves poring through these two book gems: My Mum and Grandpa.

Who knew...

...that 96.7% of my day would be taken up with changing diapers and changing clothes (theirs and mine) when those diapers don't hold certain explosions?

I LOVE M and J, but man, they get through their Pampers like they're goin' outta style. And Matthew won't look at a big-people's loo except to try to stick his hands in the bowl.

(Notice the deeyah on flickr. Keeps Maffa out of trouble when getting a diaper change. Handy. Very handy.)

These Are a Couple of My Favorite Things

Drove through Starbucks (yes, there's a free-standing SB here with a funky little drive-thru--yea!--hooray for moms in minivans everywhere) today at lunchtime on my way home from taking M and J to the harbor for a runaround. Wanted to congratulate myself on a mommy-job well done. Even managed to use the loo in the marina shop, which is quite a feat in a country not geared up for anybody with kiddies. (Don't even ask how I accomplished that!)

Anyway, yum yum yum is all I can say about my lunchies. I did what SB asked me to do: I found the perfect food-drink combo. Carrot-ginger juice (no secondhand caffeine for Joel Bean, please) and a sweet chilli pork sando-icchi ("sandwich" for those of you who don't speak katakana).

Try it. You'll like it. And then you might even kiss me for the recommendation. (But first give me a chance to go grab a mint.)

Everybody Is Daddy

I think it's really adorable how Matthew always shouts "Daddy!" when I'm on the phone, no matter who I'm talking to.

Boppin' and Blowin' Bubbles


B.B. (Both Beans)

J.B. (Joel Bean)

Hot off the press: the latest pic of the littlest Munday bean.

Runner Bean

Matthew has his nightly spaz by running up and down the hallway before shower time.


Helpful Hint of the Day

Never, ever do koromogae during the rainy season, when you have extra piles of clothes to wash and a wet balcony where they won't dry.

There. I got that off my chest. Now I can sleep like a baby. Until about 2 or 3 a.m.

Good Day

We've been really blessed today in so many ways:

  • Matthew's verbal skills are continuing to progress. Today's new words were "wohl" (wall) and "bess you" (after Joel sneezed).
  • A friend came to visit and I was able to pray with her about something she's dealing with, and we both felt Jesus' power in a really strong way.
  • The single mum to whom we gave Bob got him today and was pretty pumped about it, as were we to be able to help her out in this small way. (She's going to continue calling him Bob, so phew, no nasty identity crisis for him in his new digs.)
  • I went back to the doc again this evening and the infection in my C-section incision is getting better, after Aya and Toby came over yesterday for a visit and prayed for healing for me.
Yea, God!

Father's Day

I contacted the Nishinomiya International Association weeks ago to ask if there was space to participate in the Colombian cooking class for yesterday (not realizing it was Father's Day), and apparently I was the first one to sign up. When it dawned on me what day it actually was, Stephen graciously urged me to go anyway. Joel and I had a grand time (he hung out over in a little side alcove--you can see his stroller to the right in our group photo--and borrowed me for his meals and diaper-changing sessions), but all I ended up doing food prep-wise was cutting up two onions and a red pepper! Anyway, my group was really understanding and I loved chowing down with them afterwards.

(Note to self: Probably not a great idea to take a newborn to a cooking class in future if you actually want to get down and dirty with the grub.)

Matthew and Stephen had a fun morning-out taking a long walk and stopping at a local bakery (Bigot) for snackies. (BTW, the bakery is French and pronounced bee-go, so don't get your stockings in a wad over it. We're very PC around here.) In the evening I made (OK, Stephen shake-n-baked-n-helped because Joel wanted food N.O.W.) a very low-cal meal requested by the hubster that consisted of sausages, bacon, cheesy garlic mashed taters, roasted tomatoes (pronounced to-MAH-toes, just because it was Father's Day and we should always humor daddy-blokies at least one day of the year), and I threw in a salad for some kind of strange verdantly healthy balance, if that's possible with all of the above-mentioned items.

Grandma and Grandpa Head Home

G and G flew home on Friday but it's taken me a few days to post about it. Thursday evening we all went to one of our favorite restaurants, Kobeya, for a last hurrah (for a while). Matthew's getting into the kanpai (cheers!) spirit!

We miss you, Grandma and Grandpa! Thanks for coming to visit and spending time with all of us.

More Words!

Matthew's been at it again:

  • up = up (in reference to the ladder on his firetruck going up)
  • down = doh (ditto on the firetruck ladder, but obviously when it's going in the opposite direction)

Band of Brothers

I love this picture!

A Little Ray of Sunshine

Joel's becoming really smiley lately and totally melting our pea-pickin' hearts!


What Matthew said today (for the first time):

  • clothes hanger = anya
  • Matthew = Masshu
  • teeth = tee
  • all done = ah duh
  • Joel = Joe
  • no = nah
  • yes = es
Really cute: Matthew's got a wooden toy with different colored geometric bits (circles, triangles, and squares) that you have to fit on to pegs. Now he deliberately grabs a shape, moves it around the board, and as he passes it over the wrong pegs, he says, "Nah, nah" until he's got it in the right place. Because we always affirm him at that point, he says, "Es!" (without waiting for us anymore) and places it correctly.

The Artist as a Young Man


Grandma brought some special squeezy paints from England which Matthew enjoyed using one rainy(ish) morning. Although grandma had to help Matthew keep the paint pen up, Matthew is the one controlling the output - dots and lines, as you can see. Another creative triumph.

All in a Day's Vocabulary

New words Matthew started saying just today:

  • purple = purble
  • brown = maah
  • ball = ball
  • oh dear = oh deeyah (learned from Grandpa)
  • fork = for
  • cat's meow = meeyah
Way to go, Matthew bean!

7 Glorious Years



Water Play

More Words!

Matthew's talking up a storm, and though I posted a couple of days ago with a new list, the bean's got two new words as of today:

Airplane = ah-pane

Mouth = mou

Colin's True Color

When we posted the other day about Colin, our new Odyssey, we uploaded a pic that was pretty dark. Anyway, here's Colin in the light of day, feeling bluer.

(Deliberate bad parking, by the way, and yes, that is a real sheep (not a lawn ornament) hanging out to the left of Colin!)



Matthew's becoming quite the little comedian lately. He's apparently taking after his royal relatives, Charles and Phillip, when he clasps his hands behind his back. He even bends over at the waist sometimes, like an old man, still with his hands in the same position, and walks around. Then he'll straighten up and look at us for laughter.

(Check out that new haircut, too!)


Aka "digger":

Fushigi Weather

We thought there had been quite a bit of rain lately, but didn't dwell on it too much until Stephen's colleagues laughed at him and said of course we should know that it's now the rainy season!

Maybe we need to turn on our TV sometimes (other than for truck DVDs).

For Your Viewing Pleasure

Rub a Dub Dub


Have Kids, Will Drive

Everybody (including myself) always claims they will never, ever, under any circumstances, give in and buy a minivan when the ankle-biters come along. I've never really thought of myself as a cool cat, though, so actually it wasn't a big stretch to go ahead and bite the bullet when a good offer on a Honda Odyssey came along recently (not that the Odyssey isn't totally fab).

Since my dad suggested Joel's name, we thought it only fair to let Stephen's dad name our new car. Introducing Colin. He came along two nights ago and is enjoying hanging out in our basement car park and cruising round Nishinomiya like the stud that he is. (We do miss Bob, though, and he's found a good home with a single mum we heard about who really wanted a car. Glad he could find a new family, but it was a bit strange seeing him drive off a couple of nights ago. He's been our faithful companion since August 2003!)

What a blessing Colin is! All of us, including Grandma and Grandpa, can cruise around happily and in lots of comfort. Looking forward to new adventures in driving (and reversing).

(My only question: When will we ever have a car that's a girl?)

New Matthew-isms

I love you = I loh

Genki = genki (Japanese for healthy, full of life)

Baby = baby

Amen = amen

Digger = dee-yah

Night-night = nah-nah

Hello = ello

How Many Kidneys?

Matthew was measured in poodles, so how about Joel? Kidneys? MacBook Airs?

You decide on what sensible units of weight you would like to see Joel's weight in. Your ideas in comments please.


Sadly, this heavenly night was a fluke! I'll keep my fingers crossed and let you know how it's going, though--I've had a few friends ask how my nights with the eating-machine Joel are shaping up.

Joel and I have been to one clinic or another the past six days out of nine (I've got an ongoing infection in my C-section incision that's proving a bit stubborn, I've needed a bit of help from a breast-feeding consultant, and Joel had his one-month checkup). We're all doing well overall, though, and are so grateful Grandma and Grandpa are here to play with Matthew and generally keep us going!

Grandma and Grandpa


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