September 30, 2007
September 27, 2007
with his buddies
That's Sammy and Lilah all piled with him in the dog's bed.
September 26, 2007
I swear I'm not one of those ridiculous parents who insists that their kid is a genius. But oh my gosh, Finn's totally a genius. This morning, he went through his books one-by-one with me and "read" them to me. Now, he clearly had just memorized what was on the pages, but I think that's pretty impressive for a just-turned two-year-old.
What was particularly funny was hearing him tell the story in his own words. My favorite was his retelling of What Shall We Do With the Boo-Hoo Baby? This is basically the story of a cranky kid who is being handled by a menagerie of pets and farm animals, who are frankly, at a loss for what to do with him. They suggest eating something, a bath, and finally going to bed. (Which is, ironically, how Shawn deals with me when I'm cranky.)
Going through the book, he started telling the story. "Cow say, 'Baby, stop crying. Eat this.'" And, "Baby, stop it. Night-night time. Zzzzzz." But the cutest thing is when he tries to soothe the baby. "Baby, you're OK. Time for night-night."
September 25, 2007
Look at Finn here. Doesn't he look like he just toddled through the cornfields after playing a game of kick-the-can, just to wind up at the neighborhood soda shop? It's so retro!
Unforeseen problems have plagued the Baby Blog in the past few weeks. First, the blog software crashed. Then the database was messed up. The login and password had to be reset, and then Comcast went down for most of the previous two days, rendering me powerless to convey Finn's every accomplishment to his Internet audience. So not Comcastic.
I don't have time for the full-blown report of the past few weeks right now, so I'll just leave you with some of Finn's bon mots.
* "Mommy, Ernie's mouth is raining." (Said when the neighborhood dog was panting and drooling on a hot day at the park.)
* "OK, where's the cake?" (Said after one of the neighborhood dogs celebrated a birthday and the kids sang to her.)
* "Look! My ears are dancing!" (Said while listening to music in the car, while wiggling his ears with his fingers.)
* "Me adorable." (Said while he and I snuggled on the couch, watching Elmo.)
September 13, 2007
Finn's Birthday Party!
Here are some of the fun photos from Finn's birthday extravaganza last weekend. I've been dying to post them, but my stupid blog software crashed and I just now was able to rebuild the backend and restore everything.
You really don't know how much planning goes into a two-year-old's birthday party until you're actually planning one. The theme was Elmo (yes, our child has succumbed to the Elmo marketing machine--or rather, we have). We had Elmo balloons, red and white decorations, Elmo cupcakes, Elmo hats... It was like Elmo's World exploded in our backyard.
We were blessed that the weather was so accommodating, as there were about 16 kids there (plus 10 adults). We plied the adults with beer, and the kids with pizza and cupcakes. (Elmo cupcakes.)
I thought that Finn might be overwhelmed by all the kids and the commotion. But he really loved it. The party was in the afternoon, so we decorated while he napped. He woke up to this Elmo extravaganza and then his friends started arriving, and it kind of blew his mind that everyone was at his house. Then the pizza, the juice boxes, the presents? He was on cloud nine.
But the cutest part was when everyone gathered around to sing to him. He looked a little freaked out that everyone was singing to him. But then he joined in, enthusiastically blew out his candle, and started clapping. It was just adorable.
Happy birthday, my little two-year-old!
September 05, 2007
For Jake and Kristen
My friend, Kristen, is a dear friends and former roommate from college. Better known by her maiden name, Herbster, (and yes, her maiden name is actually Herbster. How awesome is that?), Kristin now lives with her husband, Jeff, and two sons, Jake and Grady, near my old stomping grounds in Cleveland's Western suburbs.
Earlier this year, Kristen and Jeff's older son, Jake, was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. I can't even imagine how difficult it was for Kristen and Jeff to receive this diagnosis. But they are doing absolutely everything possible to make sure that Jake gets the care and treatment that he needs.
But Kristen and Jeff's efforts don't start and end with Jake. Kristen is walking in the Autism Speaks event in an effort to raise money for autism research. Historically underfunded, autism predominantly affects males. Incidents of this condition have increased dramatically in the past 25 years.
Please consider sponsoring Kristen's fundraising efforts. Especially if you have a son and were lucky enough to have never heard such a scary diagnosis about your child. Jake is blessed to have such great, strong parents to guide him through his journey.
September 04, 2007
Happy Daddy, Birthday!
Finn is so into birthdays right now. So it's no surprise that he was beyond thrilled to help Daddy celebrate his birthday. He got to go shopping for a present, and make the cake.
It goes without saying that the cake was his favorite part. And as these pictures show, his strategy for decorating was kind of like each scoop of frosting he applied had to be followed by a fingerful sample. Despite my best efforts, dude was seriously tweaked by the end of the cake decorating process.
As Finn kept saying, "Happy Daddy, Birthday!"
September 02, 2007
Congratulations, Elle and Bob!
This weekend was the long-anticipated wedding of my dear high school friend, Bob, and his new bride, Elle. Over the past two years, they have had to endure an overseas romance, visa issues, involuntary separation, and serious phone bills. But the wedding underscored just how worth it this all was. The setting was perfect--Bob's Wicker Park backyard, the site for much celebration and events over the past decade. They married on the front porch, with friends and family scattered in the yard in front. And it bears mentioning that the weather was ridiculously cooperative. After weeks of being pounded by storms and searing heat and humidity, all weekend, the weather was auspiciously sunny, mild, and overall just excellent.
It's a huge testament to Bob and Elle that people flew in from all over the country--not to mention, the world. Of course, Danny was in from L.A. and Nick, Lisa, and Dave from Cleveland. But then there were friends Elle and Bob met in Thailand in from England. The Brophies from Canada. And--my stars!--my favorite German girls, Barbara and Babette. It was like a parade of awesome people. I was smiling so much that it hurt.
During the toast portion of the day, I was seriously enjoying myself. The lineup for toasts was excellent: Nate, Danny, Steve Catalano... Good material all around. And then Bob did a horrible thing.
Let me back up. Three years ago, at our wedding, I asked Bob to do a toast something like ten minutes before he needed to give it. Suffice to say, the toast was great, and I hadn't thought of it much since.
But apparently, he has. Because one thing I didn't know about Bob was that he can totally hold a grudge. So he grabbed the microphone, told the aforementioned story. And then, on the spot, made me come up and give a toast.
Let me just say that I never would have asked Bob to give a toast at our wedding, had I known what a jerk he was in the first place. You think you know a guy after 20 years. I'm not what you would call a "toastmaster" under the best of circumstances. I went up and stumbled through what could be considered not so much a "speech" as it was awkward rambling.
What I would have said, had I had the ten minutes I generously gave Bob at our wedding, would have been much more heartfelt and clever. I would have mentioned the great energy that was going on that day, that the perfect weather, in the perfect spot, on the perfect day, was a fitting coda to what had certainly been a frustrating journey for Bob and Elle. That they definitely deserved every minute of happiness this wonderful day. That they'd really pulled together something wonderful in such a short time period. It was of little matter that Nate was cleaning the bathroom 30 minutes before the ceremony. Or that the bartender seemed confused that she should have brought ice. That's what made it Bob's wedding. (And bless Elle, for her understanding of such matters.) But just that I'm so happy that we are just a short drive away so we can spend more time as they build their lives together. And that even if it was borderline horrifying, I was still flattered to be invited to deliver a toast at their wedding.
Enjoy these great photos that Shawn took.
September 01, 2007
I wonder if these come in a less noisy version.