November 20, 2012
May the sun bring you new energy by day,
may the moon softly restore you by night,
may the rain wash away your worries,
may the breeze blow new strength into your being,
may you walk gently through the world
and know it’s beauty all the days of your life
…until I blink and see you again.
And then all bets are off.
Happy Birthday, big kid.
P.S. you had 6 new freckles this morning.
August 9, 2012
July 7, 2012
I’m sitting in my bedroom with the fan in the window. Tomorrow is your third birthday.
It was hot today, just like this day three years ago. I love that it’s hot on your birthday. It just feels right.
Your Papa is in the living room, building the bike that we got you for your birthday. It’s bright red, you’re going to love it.
We’re both little sunburned, your Papa and I; yard work and swimming took their toll on us, though you guys were, of course, covered in SPF 45.
Your brother is poking around the house, alternating between sneaking applesauce out of the refrigerator and pretending that he has to go pee.
But you, my love, are sound asleep. I snuck in to see you before I sat down to write this. Your skin glows like the moon. Your perfect lips, relaxed in slumber, are a wilted peony after a hot summer day. Your dark golden curls cling to your sweaty forehead. I don’t blame them, you are a work of art. I love to cling to you, too.
It’s almost possible, in these moments, to forget what a complete and total maniac you are during your waking hours.
But not quite.
You are a stinker. Full of beans. Piss and vinegar. “All Boy”.
These are ways to lovingly, disarmingly describe children like you (although there is no one like you, Paolo, there never will be. Again, you are a work of art. Limited Edition).
You love to break the rules.
And then you LAUGH when you’re caught.
You laugh, and you smile, and the sun comes out. You are the sun. Every bit as obvious, bright, and essential; you are impossible to ignore or replace.
Everyone thinks it’s hilarious, this naughtiness, including your father and me. I know!
For example: You’re always in trouble at school. You’ve never made it two days without “getting your name on the board”, a massive consequence in the Montessori universe. And yet, your teacher is completely in love with you. She literally bought you a huge bag of awesome Spiderman clothes and toys and books for your birthday.
Even more indicative of your affect on people is the reception you get when we pick up your brother in his classroom. It’s like Norm walking in to Cheers.
You are the absolute essence of childhood. You are heat and reaction and love and trust. You are funny and silly and moody and relaxed. You’re happy.
A work of art. And to think, I grew you from scratch. Me!
Thanks for turning me into an artist.
May the sun
bring you new energy by day
May the moon
softly restore you by night
May the rain
wash away your worries
May the breeze
blow new strength into your being
May you walk gently through the world
and know its beauty
all the days of your life.
I love you, Paolo.
June 18, 2012
What can I say?
The days are flying by lately; Monday morning leads to Sunday night, and we’re not even sure how we got there. At least we got there. Right?
Stone “graduated” from preschool. From what I saw, nobody was denied a diploma, but I guess that’s missing the point. The graduation ceremony was insane. Two solid hour of Pomp and Circumstance, choreographed dances, singing… there was even a portion where they gave the kids free reign on the mic. Stone seized the opportunity to thank his father. Only. Ahem. I can only hope he’ll be more generous when he wins his first Oscar. Garin and I alternated between rolling our eyes and sobbing the entire time.
Paolo is a kid. For reals. He is totally potty trained, and has lost almost all of his baby mannerisms. He follows Stoney around everywhere, naturally, and copies everything his brother does. He likes to pick his own clothes, brush his own teeth, buckle his own carseat, put on his own shoes- you get the idea. He’s very outgoing, especially in small groups. He’s that kid that says “hi!” to everyone in the grocery store. He’s insanely cute. He still uses his pacifier to sleep, and I don’t want to talk about it.
Both boys are taking ballet, tap, and swim. Stoney is taking art lessons, and we signed him up for a real soccer team in the fall. We’re getting pressure form the neighbors to do T-Ball. All of this makes me want to hide in my bedroom and read, but they really love it. I’m pretty sure this is why it’s good to have two parents.
Our schedules have been really wacky lately, and the net result has been lots of time with just me and the boys in the afternoons and evenings. I’ve started rushing home from work, throwing on my running clothes, and taking a long route around the neighborhood to pick them up from Montessori. By the time I get there I’m all clear-headed, and we can walk home together without distraction. It takes the better part of two hours to get home this way, but the time is well spent. We stumble in through the door just in time for a quick dinner and a warm bath. The walk wears them out and fortifies me. It’s been a good add.
Some things I’m grateful for:
Paolo still pronounces “Orange” as “Orangen”.
Stone gets a new freckle every day, and he thinks it’s cool.
Paolo’s hair is growing out again, and it hasn’t lost the curl.
They love each other. It’s just amazing.
The only pictures I take lately are on my phone. This is very telling, no?
May 9, 2012
So, a hundred years ago, Quinn turned one.
We had a little party for her at our house. It was perfect, even though she basically won’t let me anywhere near her. I forgot about the teething-clingy-what have you done for me lately?-stage. At least we had beer.
Crabby or not, we’re all completely obsessed with this little girl; Paolo refers to every baby he sees as “Quinn!!”.
April 13, 2012
-Io calls me Lisa. Repeatedly.
-Bucket Baths, hearty laughs.
-The Sound of Music, all four of them, the whole thing.
-Leif is on to us re: the Easter Bunny. “Dada, you did it.”
-G and I enjoy our first (!!!) run together. At altitude. Gasping for air.
-I found my soulmate beer.
-The cousins didn’t miss a beat, even after four months. Exhale.
-A man on the street sees Britton and me juggling four tired kids.
Man: Wow, you guys sure have your hands full!
Britton: No, we just make it look hard.
A slideshow, in no particular order: