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The Wee One is One!

I know it is a little late but… Mina is one!!! (Ok 14 months now but whatever.) We had a small party to celebrate and unkie Simon and auntie Chrissy came to visit for the week.

We did plenty of sight seeing while they where here; we visited the Winchester Mystery House, Big Basin (the redwoods), Santa Cruz, Hwy 1, San Francisco and Alcatraz.

For Mina’s birthday we visited Gary at work for lunch at Cafe Macs and the next day we took her to the Children’s Discovery Museum.

That Morning Mina got her gifts from Mommy and Daddy, her first trike (a jet trike at that) and from Grandma a Sweet Pea which she loves to carry around and dance to.  That evening we had a few people by for cake and ice cream. We made vegan chocolate cake since some of our friends are vegetarian. and allergic to eggs. It was actually really good! We managed to get he kids to wear party hats and got plenty of good pictures.

See Simon and Christine’s photos of the week on MobileMe
See our Birthday photos, Alcatraz and HWY 1 on MobileMe

As far as first year milestones go she started walking a week before her birthday (and hasn’t stopped walking, running, dancing or climbing) and her first two teeth arrived in August and her next two just arrived this month.

The BEST chocolate cake ever…that happens to be VEGAN. I kid you not! (and they aren’t kidding; we now use this recipe whenever we make chocolate cake)

1 1/4 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup warm water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp distilled white or apple cider vinegar

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In an 8X8 square pan/dish, mix together flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, and salt with a fork, making sure it is really blended together. Add the water, vanilla, oil, and vinegar, and again, mix together so that it’s really blended together. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides if necessary.

Place in oven and bake for about 30 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean. Cool on a rack completely (2 hours).

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A 26lb update

Mina is sitting by herself with out support now. She is enjoying being able to look around her better. She really likes people/baby watching at the park and yoga.

She isn’t crawling forward yet but is can go backwards when she wants to. She can definitely get around when she trys. She no longer stays where I put her when I set her down. She is wanting to get into everything. She is gearing up for being quite the little terror when she get how to go forward.

New Activities
We picked out some new toys for her, a big ball, some little balls and a piano. They are quickly becoming favourites. We also picked out a floating ring with a canopy and built in seat for use in the pool. Yes, we have been in the outdoor pool already (mom’s got the sunburn to prove it.) The was water a little chilly but Mina didn’t seem mind. We have also had our first play time in Campbell Park and Mina has hit the swings a few times now. We are looking at getting a PeaPod to use in the park, at the pool, generaly when we are out and about as well as when we come home for a visit. It will be nice to have a portable safe place for her to sleep/play.

Mina had her first visit to the paediatrician today (family doctors won’t typicaly see small children here.)
She is developing well, she is right where she should be. She has grown to 27″ tall. When the nurse first weighted her she was 26lb 6oz(?!)
I asked her if she was sure and she was, I asked her if it was normal for a child to gain 10lbs in 3 months she told me “that was a question for the doctor”. The doctor on the other hand told me if she weighed that much (at her hight) she’d have a big round body with a itty bitty head on top. He had her re-weighed. (16lbs 8oz)
The doctor is really nice with a great sense of humour and is easy going. Mina liked his toy covered stethoscope.

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Sippy cup

Mina is learning to use her sippy cup. She has used it a few times now and is getting the hang of holding it and tilting it to get the juice to the right end. She is also figuring out how to suck on it since this cup has a flow regulator in it. (Nice ’cause it doesn’t leak when she turns it upside down.)

Our visit to Starbucks are more interesting for her now that she can have mango juice.

She has been eating solid food for a little while and is ready for stage 2, thicker food. (Still wanting/getting plenty of breast milk.)

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Mina is now using the full sized stroller. She still fits in her car seat but is much happier in the big seat. She especially likes when she can put her feet up on the bar and stick her toes in the air. This stroller also provides better shade which is good since it can get very sunny here. I also appreciate being able to strap her toys to the stroller so she can’t trow them away. This is also good practice for when we fly to Ontario in June; we’ll be using an umbrella stroller instead of trying to bring this one along.

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Life has been very busy in the last month. The Gehiere family has moved to California – though their household goods have not yet arrived. Although this site has not been updated I have been keeping a blog and photo albums about my California trip at


Yesterday, after a good nights sleep, we ventured out to do a big shopping run. Fist up was house wares at Target. The apartment has the basics but there are still things we needed. (White sheets + Pink hair = Pink sheets same goes for white towels.)

After dropping off our loot we headed off to San Fransico to exchange our rental car. We opted for a larger vehicle, Kia Sorento, only to find it was too big to easily  park in our car port. Now we have a Nissan Rogue which still has the extra room we wanted but isn’t quite so big. Since we where almost there, we visited San Fransico.

San Fransico is a beautiful city but very different from anything I have ever experienced. The houses are everywhere and densely packed. The hills are steep, cars parked on them seem to be defying gravity. We stopped at Fluevog‘s so Gary could join me in my love of their shoes. We then had lunch at The Red Victorian Peace Cafe. We even got to meet Sami the founder.

On the way home we made some stops in Sunnyvale including Safeway, our first grocery store. Mina was quite tired of being in her car seat by the time we got home.

Looking forward to spending the day in today, maybe just exploring the grounds with the sling.

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Mina’s First Bath

Mina had her first bath yesterday without mommy and in her own tub.

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Getting fed is Mina’s #1 interest right now and when she’s hungry nothing else can distract her. But somehow she still manages to put on her most serene face for visitors.

Here’s some more photos from the last day or so.

Aunt Trish made a quick visit and brought a beautiful flower arrangement to brighten our space. The choice of flower colors are perfect and the piece is arranged in a delicate little black dish from Great-Grandma’s china cabinet.

We also had visits from our good friends Eric and Mandy Cator and their 3 month old son Thomas, who live in Toronto. Seeing how alert and grown up Thomas is now reminds us to cherish this time when Mina is so tiny and also the good stuff that we have to look forward to.

Eric gave us one of his posters (framed too, no less) that feature fantastic made-up creatures for each letter of the alphabet which he drew himself in the days just after Thomas was born.

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A Visit with Great Grandma

Trina, Mina, & Great-Grandma Trina shows her baby Great Grandma & Baby 4 generations Sweet baby Women Mina

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Birthday Gallery

There are only a few photos from yesterday. I apologize for the size but I’ve been a little preoccupied.


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