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this is one of the drawings for the group show ‘flatlanders’ at mendel art gallery here in saskatoon.

(september 2008 – january 2009)

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today, elijah is one year, one month, one week, one day, one hour, and one minute old.

june 8th, 2008.  a minute after he was born…

1 month

2 months

3 months

4 months

5 months

6 months

7 months

8 months

9 months

10 months

11 months

12 months

i’ve been having an awesome time playing with elijah.  we play all day from dawn til nightfall.  he’s running around all the time.  and he’s started saying a few words that i can understand.

elijah loves spending time outside.  he’s always running up to the screen door and trying to push it open.  i have to keep it locked so he doesn’t get out on his own.   if i ask him ‘out?’, he bangs on the door and say ‘ahhtoh~, ahhtoh~’.  if i say ‘shoes’ he goes to the entranceway and grabs his sandals, even if i don’t gesture or point.  once we get ready to go, he is so proud to step out of the doorway on his own.

we go to a park a few blocks up the street from our house almost every day.  he runs around on the grass pulling out the dandelions, saying, ‘ahwuh~, ahwuh~’ (‘flower’).  he likes to break open the seeds of the dandelions after they go white.  he points at dogs we meet, saying ‘dahh~, dahh~!!’ very loudly.  he’s always noticing birds flying in the sky or sitting on the grass in the park.  whenever he spots a bird, he points at it and says, ‘burrrrr! burrrr!’ and looks to make sure i notice it too.

at home,  he tries to dig around in everything possible.  he takes a bunch of stuff out of a dresser drawer, then puts it back in, he repeats the process many times, non-stop.  he goes into the food pantry and brings me a box of something (usually the box of brita water filters).  he climbs up on the low buffet table and presses all the buttons on the phone and answering machine.  he’s always erasing all the messages and recording his own chatty voice as the answering machine message.   he always wants to play with the non-baby items in the house: the phone (he likes the real phone more than his toy phone), the computer, the stereo, any remote control.  a couple of times he’s been playing with the stereo buttons when there’s music playing and suddenly turned the volume knob all the way to maximum. that made him cry with surprise.

he wants to feed himself all the time.  he pushes away the spoon if anyone tries to give him a bite.  he’s not that interested in most finger foods like cheerios anymore.  he wants to eat with a fork or spoon, even though he makes a big mess.  his favorite food right now is apple pieces.  he knows the word ‘apple’ and can say it clearly when he sees a photo of an apple, or a drawing of an apple, or a pile of apples in the grocery store.  after the meal he brushes his teeth.  of course, he wants to do it himself.

he is climbing up and down from things.  he knows the word ‘up’ and asks us to pick him up or take him somewhere.   he’ll ask other people to pick him up sometimes, like the cashier at the grocery store.  when he says ‘up’ he holds his arms straight up towards us and twists his hands back and forth as fast as he can.  now that he can get up on so many things (the low coffee table, the small armchair, the bench near the window, not to mention the stairs), we’ve been teaching him how to get down safely.  he knows to turn on his stomach and gradually go backwards so his feet touch the floor first.  he does this getting down from our bed (it’s a tall bed), even though he has to fall a bit before his feet hit the floor.  he says ‘dahh’ (‘down’) when he’s doing this technique.

when he wants to hear a story, he takes all his books out of the cupboard and brings them to me one by one.  when i tap on my thigh, he crawls onto my lap and i read him stories. his favorite books right now are: ‘don’t let the pigeon drive the bus!‘, ‘don’t let the pigeon stay up late‘, ‘DOG‘, ‘bossy bear‘, ‘tamahiyo doubutsu‘, ‘tamahiyo misete‘, ‘dr. seuss’s abc‘ and mama’s japanese novels.  he likes it when we say lines from his favorite books at other times during the day, like when i’ll do the pigeon’s voice saying “first of all, i’m not even tired… in fact, i’m in the mood for a hot dog party!!”

i read ‘dr. seuss’s abc’ to him before he goes to bed.  his favorite character is ‘itchy itchy ichabod’.  sometimes i can only manage to read till the letter B before he starts saying  ‘oppa~, oppa~’ (‘oppai’, the japanese word for breast/breast milk)’ and putting his arm inside my shirt to grab onto my oppai.  he does that in public sometimes, so i have to be careful i’m not on parade.

after breastfeeding, it’s time for bed.  he starts sleeping in his crib every night now.  he usually wakes up a couple of times before coming to bed with us early in the morning.   he likes to start the day early, like at 6:30 or even 5:15, so i have to get some sleep to get ready for the next big day.

13 months

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this drawing is for a group show titled ’100 stories’ at hosfelt gallery in NYC, april 11th to may 31st. you can sneak a peek at the show on the gallery’s website and read about it on todd hosfelt’s blog.

it was also mentioned on the juxtapoz blog last saturday. exciting!

hosfelt gallery
531 w 36th street,
new york

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this drawing is called “mighty righty”. i drew it for a group show called “100 stories” at hosfelt gallery in NYC (april 11th to may 31st).

i’ve been breastfeeding elijah ever since he was born. i chose to feed one breast at a time. that means i would feed from the right breast at let’s say 2 am and the next feeding would be from the left one. nurses told me to feed from both sides about 10 mins per breast, and to always start with the breast that i finished with last time because better milk would come out from it. but it seemed to me that i might as well keep feeding him from one single breast from start to finish. that way, he’d get from thin milk to thick milk for sure. plus i wouldn’t have to interrupt him.

so that’s been my breastfeeding style. it was really interesting to see my breasts’ size change before and after feeding. before a feeding, both breasts would swell like a melon and get really hard. after the feeding, the one i used for feeding would turn soft and rather sad looking. and the other one would start shooting milk to release the pressure, so i had to press a towel over it.

i sometimes forgot which breast i used for the last feeding, especially in the middle of night when i was half asleep. my left breast coped fine with that, but my right one, oh boy. she would get really swollen and bumpy and her veins would stick out. if it went on too long my breast would look like biologically engineered cantaloupe with tumors.

and it would be very very painful — too full and too hard. i could pump some milk out, but i couldn’t empty as much milk with a breast pump or using my hands as elijah could with his powerful drinking.

so i must confess i had to poke elijah’s arm in the middle of night a couple of times, so he’d wake up and want to suck milk from my overfull right breast. luckily he won’t remember…

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park debut

i’ve been getting together with other mothers with young children. when we first meet new people, elijah acts shy and holds onto me. but once he gets used to them he starts grabbing the other babies’ faces…

it’s nice to see him interacting with other babies and young children. whenever he spends time with other people, he gets chatty with me afterwards. i think he’s trying to tell me about his day.

see the process of this drawing:

park debut art recipe 1

park debut art recipe 2

this drawing is for a group show called “100 stories” at hosfelt gallery in NY (april 11 to may 31)

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nowadays, my mr. man can play on his own for awhile.

especially when he gets a kick out of something, he can go on and on…

we bought him a lot of toys, but he’s more interested in ordinary objects like string. that’s okay — in a way, paul and i ended up buying those toys for ourselves.

what a magical toy the string is! he’s digging into it.

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red rope

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this is one of my drawings for a special benefit for API (animal protect institute) called “fight for flight” at thinkspace gallery in LA.

the title is “lost but found”. it’s hard to see, but it says on the tag attached to my left leg, “in front of katsura station, 22h” in japanese. and on the fuurin (wind chime), it says “thank you”.

National Bird Day will take place on Sat, Jan. 5th, 2008 and we’ll be hosting a special exhibition entitled “Fight For Flight” that will have an opening reception on Fri, January 4th. The opening will be sponsored by Dewars and Grolsch and will take place from 7-11PM on Fri, Jan. 4th. There will be a special installation from P. Williams in our front room and an exhibition in our main gallery featuring over 50 artists from all across the U.S. and as far off as Japan, Germany, Australia, Canada and Scotland.

On Sat, Jan. 5th we’ll be open from noon till 6PM for further viewing of the show. We will be hosting a special coloring contest for kids taking place in our project room that afternoon to further encourage families to come through together and experience this amazing gathering of talent and hopefully walk away with some knowledge gained on our feathered friends and all things cute and furry that the API help to protect and defend.”

Fight for Flight‘ – special benefit for API in honour of national bird day

day 1 :: january 4th, 2008 opening reception 7 -10 pm
day 2 :: january 5th 2008 special family day 12-7 pm

thinkspace gallery
4210 Santa Monica blvd. (near Sunset junction)
Los Angels, CA

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