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Dear Chloe, Age 4

Dear Chloe,

You are now four years old! We celebrated your birthday yesterday at a local gymnastics academy. You had a wonderful time with your friends – running around, jumping on the trampoline and into the foam pit, and all around the inflatable bounce house and slide. You chose the chocolate cake with the rainbow on it and you also requested a pinata. You’ve been asking for a fairy pinata for months, but since we couldn’t find one you finally chose a butterfly instead. 🙂

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Now that you are four, I’ve decided we’ll join in on the popular new tradition of 20 questions. I hope that we’ll repeat this every year. Tonight, right before bedtime, I interviewed you. Here is what you said:

1. What is your favorite color? Blue and purple. First, I like blue.
2. What is your favorite toy? My Lalaloopsy doll
3. What is your favorite fruit? Grapes
4. What is your favorite tv show? My Big, Big Friend
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Pasta
6. What is your favorite thing to wear? My orange (sun) dress with the orange bloomers
7. What is your favorite game? Playing with you. Candyland and dress-up
8. What is your favorite snack? The chocolate cereal (Kellogg’s Krave)
9. What is your favorite animal?
A Butterfly
10. What is your favorite song? The lullaby we listen to in the car where the baby floats in the air (Rockabye baby in the tree top, when the wind blows the cradle will rock, when the bough breaks the cradle will fly, and up will drift baby into the sky…)
11. What is your favorite book? The Octonauts and the (Great) Ghost Reef
12. Who is your best friend? You. And I love Anjali. And Rosabelle and Hazel.
13. What is your favorite cereal? Marshmallow cereal (Mallow Oats by Mom’s Best Cereals). Chex.
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Play in the sandbox and run
15. What is your favorite drink? Juice and milk
16. What is your favorite holiday? Christmas and Halloween and when I give out heart cards (Valentine’s Day).
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Backpack baby and (light-up) Ladybug
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Cereal (granola and/or corn flakes) with (vanilla) yogurt and milk
19. What is your favorite dinner? Meatballs and spaghetti
20. What do you want to be when you grow up? A mommy. I mean, a daddy. 🙂
I love you my little girl,
Forever and always,
Mama

Chloe’s 4-year specs – Height: 3′ 1.5″ (0.953m) (9.11%)  Weight: 29lbs (13.154kg) (5.56%)  BMI: 14.50 kg/m2


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Moon Festival & Mooncakes

mooncake

A mung bean mooncake made by a local bakery, purchased at Uwajimaya

Today Asians around the world celebrate the Moon Festival (or Mid-Autumn Festival), a celebration of togetherness and the abundance of the summer’s harvest. The exact date changes from year to year, and in 2007 it falls on September 25.

To celebrate, I picked up three of the traditional pastries, called mooncakes, made specifically for this holiday. Each round cake is about the size of my palm and a little over an inch thick, with an imprint on the top. The imprints vary, but common ones include the chinese character for longevity or harmony, flowers, a rabbit, the moon, or a woman on the moon.

Held within the cake’s almost paper-thin crust are several traditional, sweet and dense fillings. I decided to go with a lotus paste, a red bean paste and a sweet mung bean. The later is my favorite, probably because my mother, who is Asian, has made another kind of pastry with this filling since I was a child. The most curious part of a mooncake, though, is that they usually contain at least one whole salted duck egg yolk in the center. The yolk symbolizes the full moon, but as much as I like the idea, I personally don’t like to eat that part.

two mooncakes

A mung bean mooncake (foreground) and a red bean mooncake (background)

The traditional custom is to cut the cake into quarters to share with friends and family, and to serve it with tea. More information about the customs and stories associated with the Moon Festival can be found here.

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