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Sunday, January 29, 2012

A Post Just to Post

I haven't felt like writing much here lately. Well, that's not entirely true, as I've written about things and haven't posted them. I wasn't entirely sure what I wanted to say about this and this and most definitely this controversy, but would love to hear your thoughts on any and all of those topics, if you feel like clicking through to the links. But in the meantime, here's a bit of a January update.

The kids both really enjoyed their birthdays. Hannah had another Sleep Under, which this year was timed to coincide with the series finale of one of her favorite shows, "The Wizards of Waverly Place." Max's party was a couple of days later, at the amazing Kid's Street, and he seemed to really enjoy it. They both started new classes as well; Hannah is doing rock climbing, and Max is doing gymnastics and swimming (though he doesn't seem a big fan of the swimming class). Max has also completely given up his nap, which has made life a little more interesting lately.

The Temple Emanuel Share a Shabbat registrations have been rolling in, and it's been fun answering questions and facilitating the program. I've sent some emails akin to secret admirer notes asking people to sign up if they'd been requested by others as possible matches. It feels like I'm getting to know everyone a little better. We have our match-making meeting next weekend, and I'm excited to hear how all of the dinners go.

This weekend I've been home alone with the kids while Marc took a trip to Little Rock to visit Rachel, Jon, Nate and Evie. Shockingly, we didn't get the major snow storm that I was predicting to happen while he was away. I took a day off on Friday and treated myself to some shopping and to the movie "The Descendants." We've been having a nice little weekend, just the three of us, but we're also ready for Marc to get back too.

Anyway, this is just a post in order to get posting again. Maybe February will be more worth writing about.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Sunday Mornings

Ah, Sunday mornings. The time for laziness and recovering from Saturday night's fun. But if you know anything about me at all, you know I'm not into the whole laziness thing, it's just not my style. And so even if I've had a fun night out on Saturday (like last night - thanks Nanette and Jose!), I'm still up early and enjoying my Sunday morning ritual.

If we're in town, I almost always start my Sunday with a trip to Rosenfeld's Bagels, followed up by a stop at Dunkin' Donuts. I buy everyone's favorite bagels (plain for the kids, onion for Marc, and caraway seed for me), and if I'm feeling decadent, their Boursin cream cheese (something I'm indulging in less often these days). Then it's time to cross Newton Centre to pick up an iced coffee for me, and one for Marc that varies with the season. On the radio I try to catch a bit of Mix 104.1's Acoustic Sunrise. I enjoy this time driving on nearly empty streets, save for the lone police cruiser I usually see on Centre Street. Often, it's the only true "alone time" I have all weekend.

After getting everyone settled in with their breakfast, I try to spend a few minutes with the Boston Globe Sunday magazine, but it usually takes me several attempts throughout the day to actually read it all. Hannah needs to be at religious school by 9 o'clock, and so the minutes slip past all too quickly until it's time to get her there.

The rest of the morning, when not spent at Temple Emanuel for some event, is spent changing sheets, doing laundry, grocery shopping, and spending some one-on-one time with Max while his big sister is at school. Though I must admit that I'm looking forward to a year and a half from now when he's in religious school at the same time, and Marc and I will have a solid two and a half hours without the kids around.

So what's your Sunday morning routine? Or do you try to change it up?

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Eight



Today, Hannah Ruth, you are turning eight.

Daddy often chides me for making you and your brother older than you are, when I spend the last few months before your birthday rounding up. But I feel like you really are going to inhabit this age well, and eight looks good on you. Particularly this new "with glasses" version of you.

I asked if you remembered me writing you a letter for your seventh birthday, and you encouraged me to do it again. Your own writing has really blossomed this year, and I think you see already see the value in me doing this for you. When asked to write a letter to your new teachers about your summer vacation, you wrote on for several pages. I'd like to think you get that from me.

You loved finding the collection of padlocks people have left along a bridge on the River Seine, and I can see you going back some day to place your own. You looked like Shirley Temple after getting your hair done at a salon for the first time before your last spin as a flower girl. You were a royal window washer. You sewed, karate-kicked, swam, played piano and learned to read Hebrew. You broke your first bone, and stunned me by choosing a bright green cast (the better for which to display signatures). You made a really grown up decision in choosing to spend two weeks at overnight camp this coming summer.

You continue to be a loyal friend to many, nurturing some friendships for years now. You have really hit your stride at Bowen Elementary, and continue to astonish me with the things you're learning there. You are very well-loved by a great number of adults, particularly evidenced by your celebrity status as you walk the halls of the JCC, and by one of the ushers at Temple Emanuel who has a great affinity for you. And though he can get annoying, your brother is still your very best friend.

You are growing up so fast, and yet it's hard for me not to rush you. I love our talks, and though I may roll my eyes at it, I secretly love every time you say, "I have a question." I hope you have lots of wonderful adventures in the next year. I love you, kid.

Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 In Pictures

Yea, I'm a couple of days late, but here's the traditional year in review blog post. As far as years go, 2011 was a pretty good one. I remember wanting 2010 to just end already for most of last December, but I didn't feel that way about 2011. I got to see my parents three times this year, traveled to Europe for the first time, made great strides at work, and was generally healthy and happy.

I'm not big on resolutions, but I do have a goal for 2012: to spend less time on the wrong people. There are a lot of wonderful people in my life, and I'm going to focus more on them instead.

Here's a month by month selection of some of my favorite photos over the last year. I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season, and wish you all the best for the year ahead!

January



February



March



April



May



June



July



August



September



October



November



December



Happy 2012!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Four



Today, Max Benjamin, you are turning four.

Oh, how you've waited for this day! Your silly Mama (the name you prefer) told you that your birthday was after Hanukkah, and it just couldn't get here fast enough. Four is pretty big, at least in your mind. I think you've decided that mostly on the basis that when you turn four, you get to eat two gummy vitamins instead of one each morning. Such a big accomplishment.

I feel like I've been waiting for you to be four for a long time too. There is nothing better than when you are sweet and loving, funny and curious, but you still have your difficult moments. You are a boundary pusher and fiercely independent - both wonderful qualities - unless you're doing something we'd prefer you not to do. I know you're working on it every day though, and I would safely wager that at five you will have a much better handle on your world.

Nonetheless, three was quite a year. Not many three year old's can claim such a love for the Eiffel Tower, but it made a huge impression on you. I don't think you actually remember that you threw a 45 minute tantrum at the top of it, but I know Daddy, Hannah and I will ever forget it. You enjoyed going to the Temple Emanuel Family Retreat ("New Hampshire!") and trying to keep up with Hannah and her friends. You loved getting to play in the street during our neighborhood block party. When the big moment arrived, you did a wonderful job walking down the aisle as ring bearer for Uncle Ryan and Aunt Allison, even if you didn't want to take any decent pictures the rest of the day. You went to birthday parties and play dates, concerts and museums, but what you love most is to stay home and play all day.

You still love Yo Gabba Gabba and dressed as Wyatt from Super Why for Halloween. You got a new guitar for Hanukkah, and someday I hope you will appreciate how much love I must have had for you to buy a newly four year old a drum kit. But without it, how would you get to take your imaginary band to perform on stage in New York City? (Maybe this year we'll actually take you there.) Blanket has survived another year as your most treasured possession, but that may soon change. You made a whole group of new friends this year, but I can still say that your sister is your very best friend.

This should be a great year for you. You're going to try swimming lessons and gymnastics, and I think you will enjoy getting to be among the biggest kids at the JCC. You love letters, and I think reading and writing are not far off. But whatever comes next, I know you will greet it with great enthusiasm. I am so lucky to be your Mama, and I love you, buddy.