Category Archives: Roman’s Blog

Avid Computer User

He loves computers and has almost claimed Annewien’s laptop his own. He starts Word, types in text, increases font size, changes font color, shuts down the machine via Start -> Shut down – – all himself. He starts the broswer and types www. before saying that he’d like to watch “Tom and Jerry” [on Youtube]. Selecting subsequent videos once the initial tom and jerry video is on-screen he does himself.

In Word he starts wordart and can write “Adi”, “Mami”, “Papi”, “Tom”, “Bea”, “Opa”, “Oma”, “Tamara”, “Nerina” (with letter by letter prompting). So cool!

Posted in 2008, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

He Wrote his Name!

[Adi is 4 years 1 month old.]

Wow, way cool. Last week he wrote his name (after I’d written it). The A is till upside down and the positioning of the letters is not quite what one would expect, but::: HE DID IT!

Posted in 2007, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Lots of Advancement

Andres is just 2 days short of 4 years old. It’s been a while since I’ve last posted and he has advanced incredibly. He understands a lot of what we say and can speak pretty well. He talks a lot, often in a sort of monologue. He sometimes laughs when he looks at TV, when something seems funny to him. He can write 0 and 1 and A (upside-down) and just wrote a G yesterday. He sometimes goes out alone to the playground at the front of our house. He can go to toilet himself, clean his backside, put on his clothes and also shower (with a bit of supervision). He still loves playing with liquids and this can take extremes. Day before he climbed the cupboard in the bedroom to get the wrapped gifts for his birthday.

Posted in 2007, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment


Andres is 3 years and 5 months old.

He was thrilled with the cassette/radio/CD/MP3-player he received from Bea&Tom, his Godmother last weekend. The next day, he broke off the radio antenna, which was promptly retooled and refixed by his visiting granddad Flip, only to be broken off again a day later. That same day, he did something amazing. I was busy with something when he came over and told me to look. He’d taken my headphones from my computer and plugged them into the headphone jack at the rear of the player. There was a tiny symbol showing a headphone just above the plug and so he figured that they would fit right in. And they did. Music was flowing and he was listening!

Posted in 2007, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Our Trip to Brazil

We had recklessly decided last Christmas that we’d go to Brazil next Christmas to escape the cold Swiss winter. Andres was just two and a few months at the time and it did consume a lot of thought whether we should really undertake such a trip. We eventually decided to go for it and so booked the trip from the 12th to 31st of December 2006. It would involve 8 separate flights, a rental car and boat rides.

The trip went way better than I had ever dared imagine, with Andres putting up with the stress of traveling, change in climate and partially hot weather amazingly well. He also changed some his hard habits in what seemed to be overnight. His habit of drinking milk 2 to 5 times a night disappeared. In fact, we only offered him a water bottle and that was sufficient. He could sleep on an ordinary hotel mattress (always on the floor or the bed set up so he couldn’t fall off it during the night). He mostly went to sleep very quickly at night, and he slept well till the morning. Only one destination has a few mosquitoes, but we never had a problem with them. During the day, he would do without pampers a lot of the time.

Wonderful, what a change such a trip can induce!

Posted in 2007, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Andres Can Read!

He’s always been keen to operate lifts, and I guess that’s where he can decipher figures. I tried this on the computer in Word today, and he read 0 (null) 1 (eis) and 2 (zwei) correct repeatedly.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Lots and Lots of New Talk

His speech is not very clear, and others have some difficulty to understand what he’s trying to say, but for us most is pretty intelligent stuff:

“Bea EMail Schriibe”: I want to write an email to Bea (31.10.06)

“Nümme Cho zu Dir – Blub Blub macht – Papi use gholt”: While talking on Skype to my mom, she asked him when he was going to visit her again. He said I’m not coming to you anymore, it made “bloob bloob”, papi took me out. He remembered the time when he sank underwater in the pool and I grabbed him out (3.11.06)

“Ich an a bissli Coki, ich vil Stress Papi”: I want some coke, I’m having a lot of stress, Daddy.

“Du nicht schlafe, Sunne uufgwacht”: As I was closing my eyes during the day, he said “Don’t sleep, the sun is awake”.

“Schmeckt gut aus”: Normally you see “Sieht gut aus” – looks good, but he said this when I was cooking – smells good.

“Du mini held, mami”: You’re my hero, mami.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Holiday Scares

We were in Spain for holidays for a week and they were absolutely marvelous! Great weather, food and lots of relation. There were two pretty bad scares we had with Andres, though.

The first was while in the swimming pool. Andres was playing at the entry point, which consisted of a couple of steps leading to the shallow area. I decided to float to the deep part on a small rubber dingy and had swum a couple of meters when I looked back, wanting to ask Andres if he didn’t want to ride in the dingy with me. I got the shock of my life! Andres was in the water with the water level at his hairline. His hands were in the air but he was hardly thrashing about or making a noise. He was drowning with no way to make me notice. I dashed back and grabbed him out of the water and placed him with his stomach on my thigh, head down. He was choking. He recovered fast, but had there been a longer delay I can’t imagine what would have happened. Very very very scary.

The second was at our departure. There was a long queue at the check-in counter and Andres refused to stay with us, preferring to wander about and check out the check-in counter and other stuff which grabbed his attention. We reached the counter itself and we were discussing some detail when I lost sight of Andres. There was quite a crowd in the departure hall and when I walked to the point where I’d seen him last just seconds ago he was nowhere to be seen. I walked up and down the whole huge departure hall several times but there was not trace of him. I was underway for perhaps 10 minutes but it seemed like hours. I was already thinking about how we’d handle a missing child while we’d miss our flight. We decided to part ways in search of him, while keeping in touch with our mobile phones. Just when we were about to restart our search when who almost runs into me? Andres!

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Leaps and Bounds

Andres’ development is progressing in leaps and bounds. Even when he’s hot headed and absolutely wants to do domething his way, he will listen to an explanation and then opt to give in.

He has reached the question age, asking “Iiiiss dass?” (is this?) for anything and everything. If there’s no answer he will be instant. If there is an answer he’ll ask the same for the next nearby object. He also asks “und dänn?” (and then?) meaning what the next activity will be once something has been done. After hearing an answer, he’ll ask again, repeatedly, to no end.

We were in the Succulent Gardens of Zurich yesterday, which does have a pretty nice collection of catii etc. As soon as we entered, Andres started pointing to the technical stuff in the building, pipes, electrical switches, switchboards, mechanical apparatus for operating the greenhouse roof etc, competely ignoring the plants. When I pointed them out to him, he said “nid luschtigg” (no fun)!

He loves to play store, when I am the customer and he the storekeeper. Recently, it’s moved on to a computer store. So after buying ventilators of various sizes, USB cables and the lot, I wanted to pay. Then he said “täsche?” (want a bag?). And then he brought a “gschänkkli” (gift) before I went on my way.

He has bad fits of stubbornness, and a lift button pressed in haste has caused a fit lasting 10 minutes. When previously you could get him to come aloing from anywhere he was by just saying “Tschüss Adi” (bye now, Andres), if he’s not in the mood he ignores the bluff and just sulks.

He loves ice-cream, especially water ice cream and can down a stick himself. It does usually produce some puddles of sweet, sticky water on the floor, hands and furniture, though. The latest sticks which have a chewing gum in the stick don’t help!

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment


The awareness Andres shows to his surroundings amazes me constantly. Today we were on the way to the car when he points to the other side of the road and says “frei”, he’d noticed a free parking spot, which are in short supply in our area. He then clapped his hands, being proud that he’d noticed. All buttons, knobs and dials are noticed at mind boggling speed. A month ago, he smoked an Apple Mac I’d gotten by shifting the tiny voltage selector at it’s back from 220 to 110 volts within minutes of discovering the box. Trust Andres to find that single, critical switch!

He’s also started asking what stuff is. In the local electronics store we visited just the other day, we were in the household appliance department when he started asking “das iss?” (this is?) for each of the appliances displayed: egg cooker, deep fryer, mixer, blender and so forth.

Interestingly, he remembers a lot of the stuff I explain to him.

Yesterday we were in the bath when he asked what a small plastic bottle contained. A hotel give-away, I told him it contained coconut oil, which you could rub on your body. Several hours later, I found him in the bathroom sitting on the washing machine, the coconut oil bottle beside him and him rubbing his arms in with the oil!

Andres is now 2 years and 10 months old.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment


He’s really caught on to singing in the past 1-2 months. Before that, he mainly liked to listen to Merengue, Techno and songs by Leann Rimes. Even his last daycare said he didn’t particularly care much about singing in a circle. Now he’s caught on to children’s songs. The first he started actively singing was “Happy Birthday”, and he got it down pretty well. He always sang it with his own name. Before that he used to complete sentences (mostly the last word) which Annewien sang. Now he’s gotten down to singing whole songs. Annewien brought back a CD and book of popular Dutch songs from her last trip to the Netherlands in May and he’s really likes to listen to the songs. Sometimes he just sits and looks engrossed at the accompanying book with his thumb in his mouth.

I’ve noticed that Andres has started walking up stairs one foot per step for some days now. Previously, he’d always needed to put both feet on a step before continuing.

The current dialogues are nice too:
Andres: Papi, Canby-sap ha (I want some cranberry juice)
Me: There is none left
Andres: Chauffe (buy some!)

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment


Andres has always liked meat, especially processed meat like sausages, salami and the like. Salsiz, which is a small, square salami-like meat, is one of his favourites. Yesterday he first went to the fridge, took it out, then took out a knife – not just any knife, but the correct size and type of knife, with saw-teeth – and brought both to me and said “Andres ässe” (Andres eats). So I had to chop off a few pieces of the salami till he was content.

He also loves pasta (which kid doesn’t) and can down an amazing amount of the stuff in one sitting. Big size pasta is best, since it’s easiest to grab with his hands.

Annewien had huge success with getting him to sleep without all bars in his bed while I was away for 10 days. You could actually put Andres in his bed and he would stay in and sleep, both for his afternoon snooze and for the night. In the morning, he wakes up early, usually just past 7 (used to be past 8 before bars). Yesterday night was a downer, since he didn’t want to sleep and didn’t want to stay in his bed. He’d slept a lot in the afternoon and perhaps it was just one of those days. It was harrowing, and Annewien and myself had spent two hours trying to get him into bed. In the end I had to put in the bed-bars again and tie them, so that he couldn’t remove them. Within 5 minutes he was asleep.

Andres is 2 years and 9 months old.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

More Talk and Bed Problems

His verbal skills since starting the new day care have been rising dramatically. The other day I was in the toilet when he comes over and says “Papi chumm, zwei Ameisen” (daddy take a look, two ants). We do have sporadic ants every summer in the living room and when I came to look at what Andres was pointing to, there were indeed two ants strolling on the floor.

Another morning I came into the living room where his table and chairs are and I saw that he had a pack of Ballisto chocolates on his table which we’d forgotten to put away the previous night. I expected resistance when I took them away but there was none – surprisingly. A bit later I came in again and he had a single bar of Ballisto on the table – aha, he’d known previously that even if I took away the whole pack, he still had the bar, so no need for complaint. hehe. Since it was morning, I said let’s have some bread instead of the Ballisto, and to give me the chocolate bar. Clever that he is, he said “Ballisto do anne legge” (I’ll put Ballisto on the table), putting the bar on the table. That way, he’d put it away, but still had it under HIS control :-).

This morning I came in with a toast and put a slice of smoked salmon in it. He said “zu mache” (close it). It took me a moment to realize that he wanted me to “close” the bread, i.e. make a sandwich.

We’re going to have a bit of a problem with his bed (it’s loaned and we have to return it), since there’s no way he would stay in the bed if it didn’t have bars. Andres is 31 months now. Since about a week or two he’s able to remove the two removable bars in the bed and climb out himself. It bugged me so much that I tied the bars so he couldn’t open them himself. Today I was up in the attic putting away some stuff when he suddenly pops up. That REALLY surprised me. He’d managed to remove the two bars from the OTHER side of the bed (facing the wall), which I hadn’t secured, climb out, and ascend the stairs all the way to the attic.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Day Care

Andres has been in care for quite some months now. I’m amazed at his behavior when I go to get him in the evening. He is very talkative, says new words and wants to show me stuff. He picks up a lot at day care, both from his carers and from the other children. Unfortunately, day care has a big down side as well, and that’s that he regularly gets sick a day or two after being there. By the time he’s well again, it’s time for day care again (Thursday) and the cycle repeats himself. He’s had so many colds, a stomach flu and some other stuff we couldn’t identify (red spots all over). On Tuesday he had 40.5° fever and we went to children’s hospital at 11 in the night. We stayed till 2 am, we still couldn’t see doc. Meanwhile, Andres had recovered and was walking all around the place in a good mood. So we decided to go home. He felt much better the following day. It was strange that the 3 doctors and nurses we’d talked to that day gave conflicting information as to what he could have caught and how we should treat him.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment


Andres has surprised me with how rapidly his verbal skills have been advancing. Yesterday, entering the lift from a walk in the winter cold outside, he said “schön warm da inne” (nice and warm in here). When I asked him where his house shoes were, he said “Wohnzimmer”, living room. He’s been very talkative when speaking with his grandparents, although they don’t understand what he says.

He’s been using the potty well since last Saturday, when Annewien allowed him to use just his short pants, no pampers. He’s had the occasional pee in his pants and the floor, but he’s pooped into the potty each time and mostly peed too. I’m really looking forward to a pamper-free Andres!

He’s been plagued by an on and off cold / running nose / and part-fever for three weeks now, and so have I. This leads to occasional sleepless nights and a mood during the day.

He’s been quite naughty at times, scratching, biting and hitting Annewien and me. We’ve been using the corner as a kind of punishment, although he’ll hardly stay there for any length of time. He does promise not to do it again, but this is of varying quality.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Today’s Firsts

Today was the first time he allowed me to collect mail from the mailbox downstairs with him remaining in the flat. Previously, he could never stay alone. Perhaps it was due to Ogi, our cleaning man, being present?

After lunch I told him it was time for his afternoon snooze. He went to the sofa, grabbed a large pillow and placed it on the floor, knelt and put his head on it and said “Moo, sehr sehr moo” (tired, very very tired). How sweet. But within the next five seconds he was up and running about again..

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

A Year Ago

Today we had an appointment with the Children’s Hospital to look at Andres’ wrist. A year ago he had a septic arthritis of the wrist, an internal infection. It was very painful for him. His doctor thought it was a dislocated elbow and tried several times to snap it back into place. Late that day, we decided to take him to emergency hospital because he was yelling non-stop and his deputy doctor advised it. At first, they also diagnosed a dislocated elbow, and it took the keen knowledge of another lady doctor to detect that that wasn’t correct. Several blood tests, X-ray’s and many hours later, they told us it was an infection and Andres would have to stay in hospital for about 2 weeks. That was in the wee hours of the morning, after we’d spent most of the night in waiting rooms and doctor’s inspection rooms.

After two weeks in hospital on antibiotic infusion, we finally returned home. During those two weeks there was an MRI made, more X-Rays, an operation to first test for pus, then clean out and remove it, an infusion-point near his collarbone, a bout of stomach flu which successively spread to the whole family and a friend who visited us (Nora virus was on the rampage at that time – v e r y infectous!), and Annewien taking her own therapy very badly.

Luckily, mom thrust herself upon us and took a flight from Alicante to help us out.

A year later, Andres’s wrist is fully healed. It turned out that Pneumokokken bacteria were to blame. What a victory for Medicine and the Doctors and Nurses who did so much for him. I’m endlessly thankful.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment


Today was daycare day. While dressing up in the morning, he prepared to don his cotton sweatshirt with wide bright horizontal stripes: red, yellow, blue. And said “Nadine keike, Adi moi”. (Nadine will look, adi is beautiful)! Nadine is one of his day-care girlfriends.

A month or two back, I’d just applied hair gel to his hair when he wanted to lean forward so he could see himself in the bathroom mirror. He then exclaimed “Adi moi”!

After donning nice clothes, it’s easy to ask him to go and look at himself in the mirror, which he does with gusto, taking great pleasure in looking at himself in his new clothes from all sides.

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Yes and No

After a long period of saying “no” to anything we asked him, Andres is differentiating between “yes” and “no” for several weeks now, articulating his “yes” with wonderful gusto and a vertical nod (up to down). A real pleasure for me!

He does a lot of stuff unattended and tends to stay away from dangerous objects and actions, which is a relief from constantly having to observe him. Yesterday I was at a bookstore browsing through some books and the lift really grabbed his attention. I couldn’t watch him constantly and was delighted that he never stepped into the lift himself (which he would have done the first thing the doors opened a month ago) but restricted himself to watching it travel up and down through the glass panels at the side of the lift. He walks stairs almost effortlessly, and holds the railing to keep him toppling should he lose his balance (which he still does at times).

Posted in 2006, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment

Pureed Homemade Babyfood Recipes

I finally posted my yummy pureed Baby Food Recipes online before I lose the scrap of paper they’re written on.

Posted in 2005, Roman's Blog | Leave a comment