Sofia 365: Day 4

Day 4: 3.14.12

Was able to get her to hold still (briefly) to get some good shots on her own. She found the paint brush you see her holding shortly before we took the photos. Sofia kept trying to paint my face with the brush… I guess she takes after me more than I thought!

Loving that paint brush.

Sofia 365: Day 3

Day 3: 3.13.12

Especially love this outfit she wore. We were just about to leave to go to see her Grandma, hence the shoes in her hand.

Sweet Shoes.

Sofia 365: Day 2

Day 2: 3.12.12

Even harder to get her to hold still this time. I had to resort to letting her hold a sponge and having Jason keep her still once again. We will get better at this! I wanted to make a note about her outfit too, I think yellow is a great color on her. 🙂

Sponge Baby

My Latest Project: Sofia 365

Last Saturday was Sofia’s first birthday, (pictures and posts to come very soon), and with that it got me thinking. Sofia has grown so much this past year, and it all seemed to go by so quickly. What would be a way for me to document her and remember her as she grows? This is how my idea of “Sofia 365” came about.

This is going to be my major project for the year, I realize I’m already behind on posting for a few days, but I will catch up with this post and the subsequent. Yes, the project title is quite literal, I will be taking one photo a day of Sofia for the next year. By the end of this project there will be 365 photos of my daughter, and the perfect way for me to document just how much she has grown, and will continue to grow. I’m sure it will take me a bit to get a swing of things; things like getting her to hold still long enough to snap a photo, matching the lighting, etc., but I’m sure it’ll be just fine. 🙂

As photos begin to collect I will put a link on the blog’s homepage that will go directly to the category “Sofia 365”, that way you can view a day by day snapshot of her growth.

I hope that you can join me on this little venture of mine as I am very much looking forward to it, so with that said, it’s time for me to stop typing and start snapping memories.

Day 1: 3.11.12

Post Birthday Baby!

Hinamatsuri

Sofia with her Hinamatsuri Dolls for the first time.

Hinamatsuri, otherwise known as Girls Day, is a traditional celebration stemming from Japan’s Heian Period (in other words, a very, very long time ago!).
It is celebrated on March 3, and traditionally, dolls are set out to mark the day. It is the day when families in Japan celebrate their daughters, and yes, there is also a boys/childrens day called Koinobori celebrated on May 5.

This is Sofia’s first Girls Day.

We set up the dolls this past weekend, and once the holiday passes, they will be taken back down. I hadn’t seen those dolls in such a long time,  they brought back a lot of memories. The sights, the sounds, and the food.

As a small girl growing up in Japan, I remember setting up the dolls every year with my mother. I remember thinking of how ornate and beautiful these dolls were, what a wonderful holiday to celebrate me! Then we would usually have a dinner with chirashizushi. I can remember helping my mother mix the vinegar into the rice and fanning it until it was the perfect temperature and flavor. I loved ripping up the nori (dried seaweed) and garnishing the rice with a variety of toppings.
My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

My grandparents bought the doll set for me when I was born. These dolls are as old as I am, and now my mother, Sofia’s grandmother, will pass the dolls on to her. Perhaps in the future, if I have a grand daughter, I will have the chance to give them to her as well.

At the top tier overlooking all are the Emperor and Empress. The next tier, three court ladies, and below that five musicians. In some sets, there are even more dolls and tiers. The amount of dolls and the decor, can vary from family to family. It may seem very elaborate for just one day, but these displays are deeply rooted in tradition. These dolls represent the successes that every family wishes for their daughters, and rice cakes as well as sweet sake are made for the holiday.

Although Sofia is only a quarter Japanese, I still want her to know that part of her culture. My mother chose her middle name, Aya, in Kanji, it means “twill” or “woven together”. Growing up in Japan, the traditions, culture, and people all hold a very special place in my heart. I hope to be able to take Sofia to Japan someday so she can experience it all for herself.

We sing a song to mark Girls Day – you can hear it playing in the background of my video below:

Ākyāri o-tsuke māsho bonborini
O-hānā o-agemasho momo no hana
Gonin-bayashi no fue taiko
Kyō wa tano shi hinamatsuri

Translation: 

Let’s light the lanterns
Let’s arrange the peach flowers
Five court musicians are playing flutes and drums
Today is a joyful Dolls’ Festival

This is a video of my mother, Sofia and I setting up the dolls. Sofia is dancing to the music, it is adorable.

Enjoy, and thanks for stopping by!

Sofia’s First Steps

Just wanted to post a quick update on Sofia.
She just started taking her first steps last week, she is about 10 1/2 months now. It didn’t take her long to get the hang of things, within a few days a couple steps turned into four, then five, and now she’s walking all the way across the room. It’s amazing how quickly she can learn.

Here’s a video of her learning how to walk. Her expressions are priceless.

Enjoy!

Fun in the Snow (Sofie’s first Snow!)

We’ve been hit HARD with snow here the past few days! The car is buried in snow, the roads are icy and dangerous, and we’re definitely not going anywhere for a while. It’s definitely a lot more snow than we’ve seen in years, but I welcome the snow with open arms. We all need a good snow day every once in a while, don’t you think?
It’s the “Snowpocalypse”, and with that comes Sofie’s first chance to really experience snow. She was super curious of it and although it was cold, I think she had a good time playing around in it.
I just wanted to share a few pictures and video of Sofie’s first snow. Enjoy!

Baby’s 10 Month Update

Hi guys! Sofia just turned 10 months old a couple days ago. I can’t believe she’s almost a year old already, time sure does fly…
Here’s a little video update on how we’ve been doing.

Enjoy, and thanks for watching!

Welcome, and Merry Christmas

Hope everybody is having a wonderful Christmas weekend.

I’ve decided to delve back into the blogging world, at least in a more personal way (I already do a beauty blog). I started vlogging about a month ago, but figured that I could expand it and provide a little more insight into my life (You can visit my Youtube page for the previous vlogs I’ve done, all subsequent posts will be posted on this site as well). Being a young mom (I’m 20 years old, with a 9 1/2 month old girl), it can get isolating at times. I can appreciate the need for a strong support system, as well as the desire to have people you can relate to. I feel that having an outlet for your thoughts and feelings is extremely important. Writing has always been a way for me to do so, and sometimes the only way I could let my true feelings out. My hope is that my experiences can help others in a similar situation as mine.
However, I can continue more deeply into this topic at another point in time because tonight is Christmas eve, and that is a very special milestone in my baby’s life.
Her first Christmas.

For baby’s first Christmas we decided to spend the eve quietly at home. What better chance for some quality family time?  Instead of running around seeing all the family (which would have been a chaotic day I’m sure), we took it easy, or as easy as having a little baby can be, and spent our evening as a little family unit. Although sometimes it can be frustrating, things don’t always go as planned, tempers can be short, the baby doesn’t want to go to sleep, she’s fussy, she’s needy, there’s dishes to be done, my knee is hurt and swollen and I hardly even remember hitting it… these are the times that we will cherish, just mommy, daddy and baby. Time as a family is special; however dysfunctional it can get.

Now, the baby is asleep, tummies are full, eyes are slightly groggy, the house is quiet, the daily duties have been accomplished, and it is now my time.

In all honesty, I am quite excited for the morning. Not for myself, but for my baby Sofie. In the past I’ve always looked forward to opening my presents, morning couldn’t come sooner. As I have gotten older I have come to want, or need, less and less each year. Yet I have been wanting to give more and more. There is something rather rewarding about being able to give a gift, and see the joy you can bring to others. I know the baby won’t appreciate it that much this year (or even remember it); she’ll probably just want to play with the wrapping paper, but even being able to give her something, however insignificant it might be in the future, means a lot to me. We are not the richest or have the perfect home or life, but we are comfortable, and we are content. There’s no shame in wanting more, but for tonight, for this weekend, it’s all good.
I guess it’s the principle of it all, tradition, or whatever you might want to call it. I want to give the best that I can for my baby, and I want her to have everything she needs.  It is her first Christmas, and I want it to be the best that it can be.

With that said, we have a big day ahead of us in the morning. Presents to unwrap, places to go, people to see. I should rest up while I can.

Until next time, hope you all have a wonderful Holiday weekend.