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The Eidolon

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First steps [Aug. 22nd, 2016|06:42 pm]
The Eidolon
I think the baby can walk now. Sort of. She cruises around handily if she can grab something,
but today I saw her let go and take a couple steps without a grip on the couch. Most of the
time she is still cautious and will drop to a crawl when she wants to get somewhere.
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Vivian at 10 months [Aug. 16th, 2016|08:57 pm]
The Eidolon
Now that Vivian is 10 months (I almost called her Michelle again), it's time for an update on her development. Vivian is very active these days. She crawls around at good speed, and takes every opportunity to grab something and stand up. She can stand unaided for a few seconds, then carefully lowers herself onto her butt and crawls off. She can open drawers, doors and cabinets, and will merrily disperse the contents. Most everything goes in her mouth for at least a taste. She likes to eat paper, which we discourage.

She is fine crawling off on her own at home, but if she has been left without mom or dad for a bit, she becomes extremely clingy when we return. She still nurses, but enjoys a variety of solid foods, including meat, bread, berries, baby biscuits, eggs, and much else. She becomes irate watching adults eat if we do not give her "tribute" by letting her try things.

She babbles constantly, but only has a few true words. "Nai" (milk) is used when she is hungry, wants milk, wants Mom, or wants to talk about her love of milk. "Da Da" is used in babble when I'm around, but not consistently. "Uh oh" is one of her favorite words, but she uses it in contexts when it doesn't obviously apply. "Ma" was used she was hungry and irate, but seems to be replaced by "Nai" these days. She probably has other words, but they are mixed in with babble and not well developed yet.

She takes 2-3 naps a day, and sleeps at night on average from 11 to 7 or so. She likes to rotate in bed to be sideways or with her head towards the foot of the bed. Sometimes she falls off, but she prefers the bed to a crib. She will wake up often if she's on her own and not calm down until a parent is next to her. She likes a pacifier for comfort, but not if it's used to try to shut her up or make her go to sleep. She has a sense of humor, and enjoys ridiculous things, such as an adult pretending to act like a baby.

She's getting longer, but not much heavier as she moves around a lot more. Her eyes are still grey-blue, but are starting to show hints of brown at the center. She likes going out on walks and drives to see new things, unless she is tired. She hates shoes and socks, and is usually barefooted around the house or in her stroller. They wind up on the floor or in her mouth (or worse, both).
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Re-use [Jul. 18th, 2016|12:03 pm]
The Eidolon
Michelle used a stack of index cards to make flash cards of her spelling words during the school
year. Being too cheap to get rid of them afterward, I've been using the other side as grocery
lists until we use them up. But that means when I go out shopping I have large, ominous words
written on the other side like "DECEPTION" or "DETAIN."
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Changes [Jul. 11th, 2016|03:46 pm]
The Eidolon
I'm pretty sure my baby was wearing pants at the start of the day but, oh well, we can't live in the past.
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Feeding time [Jul. 10th, 2016|01:35 pm]
The Eidolon
Baby tried to take a bite of food while holding onto my foot for support. She wobbled and
nearly took a bite of my toe instead. #FriendsNotFood
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Vivian at 9 months [Jul. 8th, 2016|12:35 pm]
The Eidolon
I missed an update for 8 months, so here's how she's changed in the last two months.

Vivian went from scooting around on her belly, to being able to lift up her torso and crawl around fluently during month 8. As soon as she could move around, she took to grabbing any convenient surface and standing. At first, she didn't know what to do from there, and would often stumble, but now she can walk around a bit as long as she has something to hold onto. Her balance is improving, and she can often lower herself back down without falling.

She loves to eat table food, especially bread, eggs, meat, blueberries, rice, and bits of orange. She has trouble feeding herself, but with a big enough piece of soft bread, she can reliably get it to her mouth. Small things get stuck in her fist or she drops them. Her two bottom incisors erupted just a little bit in the last week or so, making her by far the earliest of the four girls to develop teeth. I think all the others took over a year. She still nurses, for food and comfort. If she wants to nurse during the night she will tend to pull hair or poke mom in the face to get her attention, which we discourage.

She babbles a lot, with a few consistent sounds I count as words. "Nai-Nai" (milk) is used for food in general, and is used constantly when she is hungry. "Ma-Ma" is also used for food, especially when she wants to nurse or is frustrated. She can say "Da-Da" around me, but mostly just as babble rather than a specific request. She's most talkative after a long nap, and generally her best moods are in the morning if she is well rested. She can shake her head side-to-side to mean "no," such as if you give her a pacifier when she wants to nurse. She also shakes her head for entertainment or sometimes for no apparent reason. She can say "Uh-oh," which is the one word she will occasionally say when prompted. Not sure what it means to her, though. Sometimes she will say "uh-oh" when woken up from a nap, between cries.

She is very nervous if she is not next to a familiar adult constantly, preferring Mom most of all, then Dad. She loves her sisters (especially Michelle, who entertains her the most), but is upset if left with them away from a parent for a few moments. She is friendly to most strangers, and will sometimes wave "hi" spontaneously. But she's scared of being held by other people, even if dad is right there. She will also cry if she can't see me in the same room, and will crawl off to try to find me. She gets into everything, and likes to destroy books, papers, and stationary supplies. Our house is partially baby-proofed, but she keeps getting ahead of us as she becomes more mobile.
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Guinea Pups [Jun. 24th, 2016|07:28 pm]
The Eidolon
One of our two "male" Guinea pigs we got from the pet store just gave birth to two pups today. We knew something was up a few weeks ago, when Christine decided she was definitely female (and huge). We neutered the male (poor guy) after we found out, to prevent a repeat performance, but at least they can stay together. Now to figure out what to do with the pups...
Guinea pups
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Vivian at 7 Months [May. 16th, 2016|02:59 pm]
The Eidolon
Vivian 7 mo
Vivan turned seven months old last week. Some highlights:

She can crawl now. When sufficiently motivated, she can scoot forward at a good pace. She pulls with her arms in a kind of swimming motion while her belly drags on the floor. Her legs don't contribute much yet. She also can lift herself up to a true crawling position, but she doesn't move that way.

She can sit up for short periods, if you place her that way. She doesn't pull herself to a sitting position. She can stand with something to hold onto with both hands, if you set her on her feet. She gets bored lying on her back and is constantly turning over to crane her head up to look around. This makes changing her diapers tedious.

She can make a raspberry sound, which she does for fun, or when annoyed that she feels ignored. She will do this sound when hungry. If you try to put her to bed while she still wants to drink milk, she will cry and poke you in the face to get your attention.

She sleeps 0.5-2 hours several times per day, after 2-3 hours awake. If she sleeps alone she wakes up after only about half an hour. Any little noise will startle her awake and she will refuse to go back to sleep unless someone is with her. At night she sleeps about 7 hours, from 12 am to 7 pm give or take. She nurses sometimes in her sleep though, I think.

She loves to eat solid food. Especially soft bread, noodles, pieces of meat, pastry, bits of fruit etc. She enjoys sitting in her high chair and sitting along with the big people, so long as you pay her "tribute" by giving her bits of food. Otherwise she pounds on the tray of the high chair until you notice her and give her more food.

She likes music, is fascinated by singing and whistling, and will smile and laugh if you make her "dance" to music. She does not like loud noises and startles easily. She shows a bit of stranger anxiety, though not consistently. She usually prefers women to men.

Her hair is getting longer, though still pretty short. It looks as if it may be wavy when it grows out. Her eyes are still dark grey/blue, and haven't turned yet. They will probably wind up hazel like Christine's. She has filled out a lot and probably weighs about 20 pounds.

She loves her sisters, and smiles when they are around. She is especially fascinated by Michelle. Any isn't around as much, and Christine isn't really into babies. She is curious about the Guinea pigs, but tries to pull their fur out, which isn't really good for them.

Lots of babbling, but no obvious true words yet.
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Reptiles [May. 16th, 2016|02:38 pm]
The Eidolon
IMG_6940 copy
I thought this was a snake, but Christine insists that it is a lizard, and has short, stumpy legs if you look closely enough. He basked in the sun for a few minutes while I unloaded the groceries, before taking off under a bush.
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A belated RIP for Larry Evans, maze artist [May. 2nd, 2016|02:04 pm]
The Eidolon
Larry Evans
Apparently, one of my minor heroes, Larry Evans, died unexpectedly in 2009 at age 70. He wrote a few books of 3D mazes, including one, "3-Dimensional Maze Art," where he talks a little about the design process and the artistic side of creating mazes. He never had much of a web presence, but occasionally a new book would come out from Klutz Press with his name on it, so I had assumed he was still active. Apparently he was local, living in Petaluma. Anyway, a belated RIP and thanks for all the mazes.

Below is one of my most Evans-inspired mazes, from 2001. I don't have his artistry, but I've certainly enjoyed his work as well as drawing mazes myself for about 35 years.
Black-white 2001
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