Monday, May 22, 2006

Study Guide for Grandparents, Aunt and Uncles

Well, summer is almost here and it's time for all you you in Maple Leaf Land to start brushing up on some new communication skills you will be needing this summer.

An Introduction to Ayshaese
Aysha speaks in a combination of English and Spanish words, along with a few signs.

Agua (ah-wah)- usually, water, although it is also used for other liquids (coffee, juice and sometimes milk)

Aysha (Ay-yuh) - Aysha, after no, the words she hears second most frequently

Ball (ba) - ball

Banana (nana) - either means I want to eat a banana, there is a banana, or that is where we keep the bananas (which is often difficult to differnetiate from the first meaning)

Bath (ba) - Usually, I want to take a bath, sometimes, there is the bath.

Book (buh) - accompanied by the sign made by opening your hands like a book - means I want to read a book, or I want you to give me a book so I can play with it, or this kids' book is no fun anymore, give that big one that you've got.

Chupo (Tu-toe) - soother, this one she says two ways: normally when she is asking for her chupo, or called out when she is looking for it and wants it to come home like a little lost dog

Done (duh) - accompanied by the sign, made by swinging arms from the centre outwards (like a baseball umpire making a call of safe. This means I've had enough of this and possibly, I want something else. (see ja)

Eye (aye) - this means, "I'm going to poke you in the eye for fun and you're going to pretend that you like it."

Horse (no word) - sign is made by clicking tongue and bouncing hands as if they were holding the reins.

Hungry (no word) - she points to her mouth with one finger - later in the day, more can also mean hungry

Ja (ya) - Spanish for done, used interchangably with English, depending on mood.

More (Moe) - accompanied by the sign, pointing at the palm of one hand with the index finger of the other - usually means more to eat or drink, but can also be a request (ie. demand) to do something again.

(no) - no

Ow (ow) - that hurts - the sign should by to touch your two index fingers together, but she can only point with her right hand so far, so she ends up pointing at the palm (like more) for ow

Po-po (poe-poe) - poop, as in I have poop in my diaper - sometimes also used to describe wet diapers

Rana (nana) - frog, as in there is a frog - sometimes accompanied by the sign made by poking your tongue out and down

Shoes (soo) - these are shoes (Aysha likes shoes)

Sleeping (no word) - rests her head on a hand, used to say "I am sleepy"

Sucio (tu-toe) - dirty, mostly just repeated after mom, dad or Claudina

Tete (teh-tay) - bottle, as in, there is one, or more frequently, I want one

Uh-oh (uh-oh) - something fell

Up (uh) - it looks more fun up there

Vaca (dada) - cow

Wow-wow (wah-wah) - dog, can mean I see a dog (either in person or on television) or I hear a dog. Generalized to be any four legged animal.

and last but not least, Mama and Dada - definitions not necessary

Saturday, May 20, 2006

"Moderate Danger" is Sleeping

Aysha, aka "Moderate Danger," is down for her morning nap, and I must admit that I am tempted to join her. But Lianne has been awaiting a new post, so I will manage without. Lianne gave Aysha the middle name "Moderate Danger" last Christmas. The girl likes adventure, but only to a point. Now that she's walking, whenever we leave the apartment and step into the evevator, Aysha very carefully negotiates the small gap between the landing and the elevator floor. In fact, she holds onto the side of the elevator with both arms while very slowing stepping over the gap. That the gap is only about a centimeter wide doesn't matter - falling down it is a potential risk!

We haven't been doing much picture taking recently, but have instead been playing with the video camera. There is some footage from last weekend at Coco Lisa resort, and Jamie has been experimenting with time lapses (or film that is sped up). He first did a series of sunsets, and has been now working on a few other themes.

School is BUSY. We are down to the last three weeks, and the grading is piling up. I have a new set of essays to grade as well as a Social Studies test that I gave on Thursday. And there are final exams to write (and untimately grade), books to return to the library, classrooms to clean, remedial packages to put together (for those students who look like they are not going to make the year), and year end field trips to plan. Thank God we decided not to change apartments, so at least the only packing we'll be doing is for summer vacation!

My sense of being overwhelmed at work has been compounded by illness. Aysha was sick for four days this week, and shortly after I became sick too. I blame it on the two year old next door who plays with Aysha on a regular basis. Aysha had a low grade fever, coughing, and a runny nose. I've just had an incredibly sore throat which resulted in me losing my voice by the end of my last class yesterday. Today my throat still feels really raw, but my voice is slowly coming back.

Alright, I've run out of news to tell, and that nap is calling me. If Aysha continues sleeping long enough, I might even get to some of my grading!

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Goodbye Sarah and Zavion

On Tuesday evening, Karla organized to have a few people over to say goodbye to Sarah and her son Zavion, who left Catagena on Wednesday. During the festivities, Kristina decided to do a little organizing of her own and talked her mom into giving Aysha and Julian a bath. Here are the photos of the event. Kristina and Copeland, her mom, are coming back today for a little recreational babysitting with Aysha.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Digital music at home gets easier

I try to limit my technological posts to things that I think are really cool, and this might just be one. Napster, who came to fame for being shut down as one of the first file sharing services, is now offering free music online (sort of). After Napster was shut down by the courts, its name was bought up and last year it reopened as an online music store. You could still download music from Napster, but now you had to pay for it. Enough history.

Now comes the cool part. Napster will now let you listen to every song in their collections up to five times for free. To listen to it the sixth time, you need to pay a monthly membership fee (if you pay the monthly fee, you can listen to whatever you want, as many times as you want). They have a collection of 2 million songs. If each was 3 minutes long, and you listened to music 24 hours a day, it would take just over 57 years to use up the free songs. Then you'd have to make up a new name and sign up again. Or, discriminating listener that you are, if you only listened to 1% of the songs, it would still take you a year of listening 3 hours a day to hear all the songs just once.

So, I usually look at the Calgary Folk Festival site to see who's going to play at the upcoming festival. Sometimes, I see a name and think, "Oh good, I like that person." Other times, I read about some "alt country sensation" and shrug. Never heard of 'em. This is where Napster comes in. Of the 12 leaked artists, they offer music by 10 of them (missing a Manitoba bluegrass band and a Louisiana Cajun band). So now I can listen to the bands that I will get to see in the summer - just a few songs to find out a bit more about who I'd like to see and who I can stand to miss.