Archive for July, 2011

Each district in Budapest has an assigned time once a year when the people living in that district can discard large trash items and they will be picked up by the city for free. Our district apparently was assigned last week. We know this because all of a sudden last Tuesday (I think) large piles of old chairs, pulled apart refrigerators, windows, and old shoes began accumulating at fairly regular intervals down the street.

This is the pile right across the street from our window


Piles on the curb up and down the street crossing ours.

No sooner were there two balcony doors outside our building from our remodeling neighbor than the first gypsies began showing up.


First of all, I don’t know if “gypsy” is politically correct, in Hungarian they’re called the Roma, but I don’t mean to be rude toward gypsies. They’re all over the place here and kind of just a part of life. But our streets were pretty busy with gypsies and others rummaging through the piles and cars with trailers attached hauling all the salvageable things out. I saw several trailers full of metal frames of chairs, clothes drying racks and any other metal bits and pieces driving off down the street.


A woman going through the piles

By Friday they had it all pretty well cleaned up in our neighborhood. There was some litter left where the piles had been, but even that was pretty well cleared away by Sunday. There were still some piles in the neighborhood around church though. This picture is from that neighborhood, but I took it on Thursday. It was a little bigger Sunday, but not a whole lot.

One of the bigger piles I found


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Evelyn – 15 months

Evelyn decided she would talk a few weeks ago and then decided it was overrated. She’s said “mamma” pretty clearly for a couple months, but a few weeks ago she added “dots” (socks) and “tuuuz” (shoes) to her vocabulary. She used them for about a week along with a “guh” word that seemed to pretty much mean “I want that.” Then she quit. She has a new word now “dat” or sometimes “dats.” She says it and points and as far as I can tell it means “that.” She does still occasionally say “tuuuz” but usually she sticks with her all purpose word.

She’s learning to understand quickly though. She points to her nose, eye and head when I ask and sometimes she’ll do her ear. The other day Avery asked if she could wear a hat and Evelyn grinned and patted her head. A week ago or so I said “Let’s go” and she went and climbed in her stroller. She’ll also look at things (or for things) if I mention them.

Evelyn has started feeding herself, which means some pretty exciting messes in the dining room. While we were out with some friends last week I let her hold the spoon while I fed her and we haven’t been able to go back to me feeding her since then. She wanted to hold the spoon and then I let her do it all herself and now she only lets me feed her occasionally. She’s pretty good with the spoon, I have to say. I’m quite impressed. She gets most of the food in her mouth, but when she’s full she likes to play, and that’s where the messes come in. Tonight she made a nice painting in her hair with refried beans.

She seems to kind of be ready to be done with baby food, though, so maybe soon we’ll be switched to finger foods and it won’t be such a big deal. She still eats a blender of baby food most days, but we skip days here and there now, so maybe soon she won’t need it anymore. Hot dogs have helped a lot. I could only get her to eat meat blended in with fruit, but now she likes hot dogs and lunch meat, so that’s a big step.

She’s becoming quite demanding about her preferences. Tonight she was whining at bedtime. I gave her a cracker and that didn’t fix her (usually it does), so I tried water. She had a cracker in each hand so I put the sippy cup to her mouth and she yelled. So I gave her the sippy cup to drink and she yelled. So I put the sippy cup down and she kept staring at it. Finally I let her pick up the sippy cup herself and she drank like a camel. Little stinker that one is.

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In a lot of families little sisters seem to copy their big sisters and do everything the older one does. Not so much in our family. Avery likes to do everything Evelyn does. We went outside today and when Evelyn walked around the driveway Avery walked around the driveway. When Evelyn fell on her bottom with a plop, Avery plopped herself down on the ground too. When Evelyn walked as fast as she could toward me while giggling maniacally, Avery started cackling and ran at me too. It was an interesting position for me to be in.

This month a friend of ours introduced Avery to “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and let us borrow it for a while. Avery spends a lot of time singing “I’m just a doll on a music box that’s wound by a key” and “Truly scrumptious.” One day Ivan started making up his own words to “Truly Scrumptious” and Avery stopped him quite forcefully and said “Don’t sing it. It goes…” and then sang the right words. She’s pretty hooked and asks to watch the movie at least once a day.

Her favorite phrase lately is “Of course it is!” and it seems to apply to any situation that she wants to be the case. I can’t remember what she asked today but it was something like “Can I go with you?” I said “No, you’re staying here.” “Of course I can!” she said.

Avery is also pretty well potty trained. Sort of. She was doing really well until we went to Bratislava for a day a week ago. Since then she’s had an accident every other day or so. She seems to be nervous of foreign toilets and now she doesn’t want to use ours either, so we’ve spent a couple days trying to get her to pee regularly again. The third day she had an accident I made a rule that she didn’t get to go anywhere until she had gone on the toilet (we always go on the toilet before we leave, she’s just refused to pee on the toilet the last couple days when we go) and we’ve had a couple pretty good fits when I left her home with Daddy while I went shopping, but it seems to be getting through. Hopefully it will stick. I guess I’ll add my name to the forever long list of parents who despise potty training. Nothing’s easy I guess.

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