Our Last Christmas and NYE in Taipei

We stayed home for the holidays and enjoyed a low-key Christmas and New Years; our last in Taipei. This year instead of painting a cardboard tree we picked up a small fake one from Carrefour for $20. Decorating it provided a whole afternoon of entertainment for the boys.

img_0775We painted popsicle sticks and used the glue gun to make some ornaments as well as a star for the top of the tree.

img_0779Jude was all about presents. Anytime I would take him to a store he would ask me to take a photo of the item he wanted to send to Santa.

Even thought Christmas isn’t an official holiday here, the Taiwanese still like to celebrate it. The boys school spent the week before Christmas making ornaments and decorating their own classroom trees.

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img_1821The Friday before Christmas the school had a big Christmas concert where each class performed to songs they had been practicing. Jude totally nailed his song and dance and adorable Toby started of great when he heard the music and then when he looked out at the audience froze and then finally decided to exit stage left!

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img_1524We didn’t do anything special Christmas Eve. We had hotdogs for dinner and then Luke ran out to the toy store to buy the boys a present each.

img_1552They opened their gifts in the morning and were pretty happy with their new superheroes.

img_1565We had a lazy Christmas Day hanging around home. The highlight for the boys was getting to Skype with Santa Claus.

img_1575A few days later Christmas came again when we received a big package from Grandma and Grandpa.

img_1590The boys both got a remote control car- what a hit!

img_1612They also got loads of adorable PJs and some new books. So spoiled.

We had a low key New Years Eve as well. Luke and I put the boys to bed and drank some bubbly. At Midnight we ran outside and watched the Taipei 101 fireworks. They were amazing.

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And on New Years Day we celebrated by going out to brunch at The Diner. A very special treat for the boys as we hardly ever eat out!

img_1760img_1759Now its the New Year and we have a mere 3 months left in Taiwan. It’s going to be very sad to say goodbye to this place we’ve called home for the past 5 years.

Toby: 27 Months Old

Our poor Toby started the month with a high fever.img_1352He was quite sick for about 3 days and so for 3 nights we both slept poorly.

img_1367He was so lethargic and would just pass out on me during the day.

img_1382On his 4th day he started to recover and on his 5th day home he was well enough to go out again and we were able to make a quick trip to Costco. He finally had his appetite back too.

img_1392We were all happy when Toby was well enough to return to school again.

img_0930Thankfully kids bounce back pretty quickly from illnesses and getting sick just seems to be part of the package when kids start at school. The teachers have assured me the first year is usually the worst as they are exposed to so many new bugs and over time it will get better. I sure hope so.

img_0911Otherwise Toby had a great month. He continues to make us laugh all the time with his funny little mannerisms. He sometimes likes to talk in a really stern, deep voice and boss us around and will end his sentence with a big ‘Hmph!’. He is into telling stories and role play. He morphs into different characters and I can hear him making up conversations between the different characters in his crib before nap time.

img_0842Toby is obsessed with scary things. He loves all things Halloween – monsters, skeletons, witches and ghouls. It was actually hard to get Toby in the Christmas spirit because he just wasn’t interested -he wanted Halloween again. img_1431Toby is Mr. DIY. He loves to do things by himself or at least have a good go at it. There have been a few occasions when I have accidentally done something for him as we were in a hurry and he threw a huge tantrum. Toby is really good at pouting and humongous 1/2 hour long tantrums. There is not much in between.

img_0828Toby always has Jude’s back. If I put Jude in time-out, Toby will try to rescue Jude and then also end up in time-out.

IMG_1483They are great at making up games in which I am the ‘bad guy’. I will be in the kitchen and suddenly will get attacked with pillows or they will stand and roar at me.

img_1485School is still a delight for Toby. His classroom has a communal snack table and Ms Kitty told me she has had to remind Toby several times that the snacks are for sharing. That’s our Toby.

15724822_1838076383103996_2886203901175703741_o15724741_1838076723103962_2857512214566614000_o15732618_1837638416481126_7552490581449373212_oHere’s some of Toby’s most recent work from school.

img_0818Our littlest Leonard is sure growing up fast.

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Jude: 44 Months Old

We had a strange month. Jude’s class was cancelled for a whole week as 3 kids in the class were sick. That week he was fine but later caught the nasty bug and had more time off school. It was nice hanging out solo with Jude. We would go for coffee and cake, check out all the Christmas decorations, and hang out at playgrounds.

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img_0832He missed Toby a lot though as kept asking if it was time to pick him up from school. It was great when he was finally back at school again.

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img_0926Not long after Jude was back at school Toby got sick and then three days later Jude got it too. Fever and a bad cough.

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img_1400We had been gearing up for Christmas but Jude totally lost his enthusiasm for it. We had some friends over to bake cookies and he sat up and watched for a bit and then had to go lay down. Poor thing.

img_1434Thankfully Jude recovered in time to enjoy Christmas. A few days beforehand, Luke and Jude went on a tour of all the Christmas decorations around our neighbourhood. Taipei really does a great job with all the trees and lights.

 

Naps are still hit or miss with Jude. It takes a lot of work to get Jude calm so it usually means if I want to get him to nap I have to lay in bed with him and give up my lunch break. Even then he doesn’t always nap. Sometimes I snooze and he stays up reading. One day he must have been very tired as I left the room to get him milk and when I came back in I found him under a pillow. I thought he was hiding but he was fast asleep.

img_0957Jude has been getting really good at paying for things on his own. We will to 7-11 or the market and I let him grab whatever we agree on for his snack and then he will go up on his own and pay for it. I sometimes get sideways glances but people are mostly supportive of me encouraging his independence and understanding of how money works. We still have a lot to do on the earning it bit.

img_1762Jude also had his annual eye checkup for the condition he has called Browns Syndrome. Thankfully his vision is still perfect so no treatment is required at the moment. He won over all the nurses by using head nods to indicate left, right, up and down. He was doing it to make them laugh and sure enough he has a swarm of nurses around him.

img_1679Jude is certainly our little performer!

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