Monday, November 10, 2008

Alas, completely housebound again...

This last week, we attempted to go out to dinner--all of us. Now, we weren't going to Galileo or even Equinox. Just to The Diner, which we like especially because it boasts a short stack, a kids' menu, and a full bar. I mean, who can beat that when you have little kids?

Anyway, Carroll arrived well in advance and ordered for all of us, so when the kids and I arrived, all we had to do was sit down and eat. This, sadly, was too much to expect. Truman is this crazy combination of incredibly little, ridiculously strong, crazily determined, and completely out of control. Within minutes, he had wriggled out of the restraints on his high chair and was standing up reaching for EVERYTHING. Before we knew it, there was food all over the floor and he was going for the ketchup, sugar packets, silverware, you name it. We ended up with a few drinks spilled everywhere and a significant portion of Kate's blueberry syrup from her pancakes all over Kate's clothes, Truman's hair, the high chair and the floor. All the while, Truman was screeching delightedly and the people next to us were wishing they'd decided to stay home.

When we left the parking garage, we were shocked to find that we had been there less than an hour. In fact, it was only about 40 minutes. I believe we may have discovered some sort of time warp. So anyway, if you want to see us anytime in the next 12-18 months, you're gonna have to come to our house.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Time Shift and Halloween

In case anyone is wondering, my children are NOT on board with the change in time. This is why, after a great deal of cajoling, rocking, and fetching of milk, I found myself showered, dressed and in front of the computer with two children in tow at 6:01 am. Ah, well, I guess I'll try to consider this a "Glass 1/8 Full" situation and take that extra hour I'm supposed to have today to get a few things done.

One of those things that needs doing, of course, is updating this space (thanks for the prodding, Merie ;> ). Of course, I know that when I'm told, "You need to update your blog," it really means, "I want to see pictures of the kids." Unfortunately, the camera battery was out of juice and so updating the blog meant: 1) locating the camera battery charger; 2) charging up the battery; 3) uploading the pictures; 4) picking some to include; and 5) actually putting the post together. Just so you appreciate what went into this effort in the pre-dawn haze here at my house. (And we wonder why the chief comment on Kate's mid-semester progress report is, "Kate struggles with organization and if she masters that, she will be very successful." Well, wouldn't we all!

At any rate, we had a lovely Halloween that seemed to go on and on, which is fine with me, since it makes it worth the effort to actually come up with costumes. Unfortunately, we did not manage to capture for posterity Carroll's costume from the party we went to on Saturday night. He safety-pinned toys, baby dolls and stuffed cats to himself and went as our living room. The funniest part was that our neighbor immediately knew what he was!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Well, it's finally fall, which I always think of as my New Year. Maybe it's just because I've always been an education junkie, but come Labor Day, I always start thinking about where I'm headed and what I'm going to do with myself--it used to be about picking classes, choosing activities and all of that. Now it's about cleaning out the closets and the e-mail box, losing 20 pounds and setting a new running goal.

Of course, there's also the age-old school stuff to relive through the kids. Kate and Isabel both started at new schools this fall. Kate is in 5th grade and she's now at Washington Latin, which extends from fifth through ninth grade (it will ultimately go all the way through twelfth grade, and our expectation is that Kate will stay there for the duration). She's truly becoming a middle schooler with lots of added responsibility (she will take her first city bus ride on her own today - yikes!), piles of homework, and more self-direction. I also got her a cell phone, which I NEVER thought I would do. Izi has started at the local public elementary school, which has a nice preschool program for 3 year olds. She's really enjoying being in the big school, wearing a uniform, eating in the cafeteria, and all of that "real school" stuff.

As for me, I'm out there running and doing my best to be out there four or five days a week. It's a little tougher than it used to be, since I rarely run without pushing 50 pounds of kids in front of me. When Cara visited in July, we went out running and we did a pretty good job of reminding each other to "just keep swimming, just keep swimming" (as all of you parents out there will recognize from Finding Nemo). It's tougher to remind yourself of that, but I'm working on it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

One year already?!?

Last week, we celebrated Truman's first birthday. It's amazing to me that it's been a whole year. We constantly marvel at how grown up he seems, though, for just a year. He walks like a pro (runs most of the time, in fact), says a handful of words...and most amazing of all to us, when he got his brand new ride-on firetruck toy from Papa, he knew just what to do. In fact, he tried to climb on while it was still in the box! I guess it does pay to be third in some ways--he's just desperate to be like his big sisters. I will try to keep reminding him of that when he complains about all of the pink hand-me-downs!
Kate has returned from her month of sleep-away camp, and she seems to have tried absolutely everything this year. I'm especially proud that she did so much sailing and ocean kayaking! I want to go along next year, but I don't think she'd let me.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

A little perspective

Last Sunday, we all took a trip up to Echo Hill Camp to visit Kate, our ten year-old, who is gone for four solid weeks.

For anyone who doesn't know Kate, she is an amazing kid--bright, talented and insightful, but also (much like both of her parents--at least as kids) hardheaded, a little odd and maybe just a little socially awkward. When I arrived, I was struck once again (this does happen a lot) that the first thing out of the mouths of her counselors (literally within two minutes of meeting me) was to tell me what an amazing girl I have.

Now, it's not that I didn't know that Kate was great, but sometimes in the midst of all of the arguing about how much time is spent on Webkinz and whether hair and teeth have been brushed and whether homework has been done and whether candy is being hoarded somewhere in the vast wasteland of her room--not even mentioning the state of the space under her bed, it's easy to lose sight of that kind of thing. (I'm sure you can relate if you're a parent.) And sometimes, it just takes someone you've never met giving you that little inkling into who your kid really is to remind you that maybe you ought to step back and smell the roses, so to speak (though maybe not literally if one of the things you are arguing about is how often it is appropriate to shower).

Saturday, August 2, 2008

A start...

So here it is...hopefully better attended to than all of those journals I have begun over the past 30+ years. Lots of books with a few filled-in pages and lots and lots of blank space.

In order to stick with it, I will try to remember that today I was inspired, even though a blog had not really been in my plans, by three women I admire greatly: two of my oldest friends and my mother. Yesterday, I talked with Cara and Merie, who both mentioned blogs--Cara as a goal she had set for herself and had yet to accomplish this summer and Merie as a prolific, organized and inspired blogger whose blog I had failed to pay attention to (shame on me!).

So today, I read Merie's blog a bit and saw what a wonderful gift she was giving to her daughter and to her family, and I also thought of my friend Emily and the gift of her blog that she gives to her children and her friends and I was especially touched by it, since today is the one-year anniversary of my mother's death--much, much too soon and in the midst of a full and happy life.

Since my mother's death, my wonderful stepdad has been carting over carload after carload of amazing things my mother left behind--photos, albums, baby books, a wedding album, her grandmother book that she left behind for my daughter. She could never have expected that she would not see 70, yet she documented everything in real time, letting us all in on who she was from her 20s until her 60s. When I showed my Aunt Mary Jane my mom's wedding album, she was struck by the attention my mother gave these milestones and commented in her quiet way that my mother was "quite the documentarian."

I am lucky for that and though I'm a more scattered and frenetic soul than my mother was, I want to do what I can to give that to my children--my two beautiful girls, Kate and Izi (who are 10 and 2.5), and my little boy, Truman, who is almost one.

So Mom, this one's for you. I'll do my best to make it worth reading.