It’s an underground party (literally, as it was in our basement) last night, featuring Harper, Finn, & DJ Hen:
When it comes to writing a blog, you’re sometimes advised things like, “Be Yourself, Only Better… Don’t share every little facet of your life, only the charming parts.” On the whole that makes sense, but it can feel a little misleading. That’s why I found this observation insightful:
“Any parent who has posted photos and videos of her child on Facebook is keenly aware of the resulting disconnect from reality, the way chronicling parenthood this way creates a story line of delightfully misspoken words, adorably worn hats, dancing, blown kisses. Tearful falls and tantrums are rarely recorded, nor are the stretches of pure, mind-blowing tedium. We protect ourselves, and our kids, this way; happiness is impersonal in a way that pain is not. But in the process, we wind up contributing to the illusion that kids are all joy, no effort.”
Or, as famous mom-blogger Heather Armstrong described childbirth, “It Sucked and Then I Cried.”
Anyway, we couldn’t be crazier about our guys, and as they get older (and the days longer and the weather warmer), things are only getting better. I just wanted to acknowledge that we do have our ups and downs. And now, back to chronicling the delightfully misspoken words! 🙂
Our guys sure were happy to see Dad-o upon his return from a weeklong visit to Hamburg, Germany. I had already brought home a pirate shirt for Finny when I visited Hamburg, and John brought one back for Henry this time. Here are our two little grinning pirates in action, with their new buddy Klaas, the pirate duck!
“I made a little teepee for the pig,” announced Finn on the couch this morning. 🙂
Our big guy now explores the Wild Blue Yonder. 🙂
Who loves giant multimillion-dollar “toys”? We do!!
During our long journey home from Oklahoma, it was marvelous to find the big people-movers in the Phoenix airport. Newly fueled up on French fries, Finny was ready to blow off some serious steam, and the long moving sidewalks were just the ticket. I thought of one of our favorite Babar stories, in which the clown monkey Zephir performs “Chase of the Magic Hat.” Check it out!
PS–Perhaps someday he can apply these skills on a Japanese game show.
Gutentag from below the Elbe!
Ever since Margot visited Hamburg last fall, we’ve been talking with Finn about the tunnel under the harbor (see previous). Last night my colleague Jan was kind enough to take me for a visit, and I recorded a little travelogue for the guys. Fair warning: The video may be crushingly dull for anyone over the age of 3, though I’m told it’s been a hit with the target demographic. 🙂
Tonight it was my turn to be the recipient of a spontaneous, unexpected love-bomb shower from Finny. We’d just done our story and were lying in bed (at his request) for a few minutes to do “talk a little bit.” All of a sudden he reached over, gave me a big hug around the neck and said “I love you so much, Toad!” (Toad is one of the characters in the Thomas vids). He continued, “I really really love you a lot” and then proceeded to snuggle up and lay on the smooches and more hugs. Yowza! Talk about a terrific feeling. Rainbows and shooting stars! I of course returned all that affection with even more hugs and smooches, and then bid him sweet dreams. I think my dreams will be pretty sweet, too.
Greetings from Hamburg, Germany, where Dad-O is fighting jetlag and preparing to meet with his new team in the morning. As you may recall, Margot cooked up an elaborate pirate-themed mythology about Hamburg during her last visit, so now I have a few days to dream up an impressive story to tell Finn!
While I was busy playing human origami in the back of a plane, Mom-O & the guys were off celebrating little Halcyon Stotzner’s birthday with a posse of tots at a nearby jumpatorium. Here’s a quick photo snapped by Halcyon’s proud mom Meredith, documenting one of many human trains the guys formed. I already can’t wait to get back and horse around with them.
Hen’s little personality is coming out more bit by bit as he explores tiptoeing, causing (play) vehicular mayhem (“Dump!! Oh NO!!”), dancing, and more. Here he shakes a leg (and a book) with Harper and her newborn brother Tiernan:
This whole parenting racket can be a grind, but then the guys do some terrific bit that just blows us away.
Last night I had to attend a work function that ran surprisingly late. I was able to scramble and get home just in time to tuck in Finny. He dubbed himself “Thomas” and me “James,” and we laid in our little shed (his darkened bed) talking about our railway adventures. That’s when the laying on of crazy love-bombs commenced. Tipping over, he spontaneously embraced me and said, “I love you! I love hugging you, I love hanging out with you, I love playing with you…!” And when I explained how I’d hurried home, he shot his hands up in the air and exclaimed, “Hooray for James!!” At which point my heart nearly exploded. 😀
Hen, not to be outdone, has been getting more and more playful and chatty. Here’s his novel interpretation of how to use a chef’s hat!
Step into our beat lab, won’t you? 🙂
(Shot this afternoon at the Exploratorium in San Francisco.)
Something tells me that baby Tiernan Hogarty, glimpsed briefly here slumbering peacefully despite the hijinks nearby, is in for a laughter-packed upbringing at the hands of his mom, Sarah. See what I mean:
Over the holiday break I had fun shooting little pics of our guys, then processing & sharing them with the iPhone app Instagram. Here’s a little gallery.
Seeing the image at left just now, our friend Julieanne said, “It looks so old that it could be you in the photo.” I said, “Yeah, except that if it were me, my dad’s finger would be covering half the image.” 😉
“I have an idea,” reported potty-dwelling Finn last night. “The idea is, maybe when a kid is sitting on the potty, the mom and dad can just take off, and then the kid can shoot some poop or pee into the potty, and then after that he can put a foot stool up to the sink and just climb up to the treats and *haaaup!*, eat one! The kid needs some privacy–that’s the idea.”
Good suggestion, lad. Now we might want to consider hanging one treat (a chocolate-covered pretzel) on a little hook by the sink, such that “the kid” could climb up and help himself to just one treat. (Maybe it could be like a “take a penny/leave a penny” dish: “take a pretzel/take a pretzel.” :-))
Oddly enough, it wasn’t til this past week in Oklahoma that our lads got to experience the power & pageantry of teeter-totter riding. Here they are in action, throwing in a special bonus performance as a couple of quails (per an earlier post):