Being a brave dad (aka KOBI, King of Bad Ideas), I volunteered to take our dudes plus their buddy Colton to the Salinas Air Show while Margot stayed back with Colton’s mom Mara & younger siblings. We ended up having a ball, returning home with the same number of kids & fingers as we left with. It was particularly fun to see my old friend Hughes & his kids (a first air show for all three of them!) and to borrow his big camera lens. Here’s a little gallery of the proceedings.
This weekend brought an unexpected treat: My old Notre Dame friend Bryan Mason, whom I hadn’t seen in probably 20 years, paid us a visit as part of his West Coast sojourn down from Alaska (where he’d spent the summer working on a fishing boat). “I have to warn you,” he jokingly told Margot and me upon arriving, “I’m pretty great with kids.” And so he was, quickly immediately himself as “Tío [Uncle] Bryan,” master builder of everything from Legos to sand castles.
We all had a ball taking him to a perfect beach day in Santa Cruz, and the boys were kind of blown away at all the help they got in building some epic volcanoes in the doomed “Financial City” (so named due to Henry plopping out a dozen little “banks” with a little sand mold). This morning Finn remarked, “I thought that with another adult around, it was going to be just ‘talkity-talkity-talkity,’ like usual at my birthday party or whatever—but it was super fun instead!” Henry enthusiastically concurred.
We’ve long been big fans of the big men who toss around cars, refrigerators, battle axes, and more in strongman contests, so it was a treat to meet Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson—the World’s Strongest Man & the actor who plays notorious head-squashing character “The Mountain” on Game of Thrones—at this weekend’s Highland Games in Pleasanton. We’d promised Henry a chance to see the big guy “toss a Henry-sized object over something the height of the garage,” attempting to set a world record in the process. We didn’t stick around quite long enough to see whether he succeeded, but we were just happy to meet him & get away with our heads un-squashed. 🙂
Our man Henry has finally mastered two-wheeling on his own! We’ve been pretty inconsistent with practicing, and therefore it’s taken a lot longer to get him riding solo than it did with his brother. But last weekend we spent a TON of time with him, coaching him as he rode many (only slightly-assisted) laps around his school building. Then last night, John took the boys to Hummingbird park to cement Henry’s confidence.
Hen, as usual, was a tough customer. He went into the training with his typical “I can’t do this, this is too hard, I’ll never learn how to do it” attitude, and it took every shred of positivity and parental encouragement to get him to believe he could do it. As I ran around the school next to him, I kept chanting “You can do it! You can do it! You are doing it! Pedal pedal pedal!!” He asked me to keep it up, and finally, after what seemed like a million laps, I could hear Henry chanting along with me, believing he could do it.
Last night, at the park, Henry’s self-confidence finally kicked in, and as he rode around the park, he was saying to himself “I can do it…I can do it!” (which you’ll hear at the beginning of the video above)
And he DID! We could not be more proud of him, and it makes a mama’s heart glad to hear her little guy really truly believing in himself. Now, of course, he wants to bike everywhere all the time!!! So the fellas are going out for a ride after Dad-o gets home from work tonight, which I’m sure is the first of many, many family rides to come!