Thursday, March 28, 2013

Three Words- 23 Months 2013

Me: What?
Me: Where Dada?
James: Where Dada go?

 Three words! In a row! Only partially prompted.

Visiting Janice and Darren- March 2013

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Janice, Darren, and Fudgie

We spent most of our Spring Break trip with Janice, Darren, and their pug Fudgie. We arrived late on Thursday evening, and took it easy. Friday, Janice was off from work so we spent some quality time in the afternoon, went to lunch and took James to the park. The park had a fun sandpit where James made sand pies and shoveled little paths.

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
At the park on Friday

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Scooping up sand in the pit

Not that James needed any activities really. He loves little dogs like Fudgie, and Janice and Darren have a little backyard they can chase each other in. Pretty much heaven for James.

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Chasing Fudgie outside

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Playing with Fudgie inside

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Saying goodnight to Fudgie!

Of course, my favorite part of the day was still after James went to sleep. We ordered take out and watched the final Twilight movie. This is a little tradition of ours with Janice and Darren, and it started ironically, but then I kind of got into it. And by kind of, I mean I really got into it. We like mocking it while we watch it though, so there were lots of jokes as the expense of Taylor Lautner, who we dubbed "Uncle Boyfriend."  

After William B's birthday party on Saturday, Darren and Janice joined us for a trip to another bigger park. James had the run of the whole place and at one point tried to steal some sporting equipment from an adult couple. After that we returned him to Janice and Darren's backyard where he managed to get himself stuck in some shrubbery.

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Hanging out in the back yard on Saturday

Visit to Bucks- March 2013 
Not only is he stuck in shrubbery, but I am taking a photo instead of helping

We ordered take out again, but after James fell asleep we realized we were out of Twilight movies and faced the existential crisis of what other movie to watch. Kevin would have voted for college basketball as he had spent much of the weekend sneaking games on his phone. We tried to give Kevin and Darren a choice in movies, but they kept insisting the decision be left to me and Janice. Unfortunately for them, Janice and I are vaguely sadistic, so we picked Taylor Lautner's movie Abduction. We got drinks and placed our bets on how many minutes before Lautner removed his shirt. I guessed 10 minutes, and Kevin and Janice guessed more than that, then Darren guessed 3 minutes, "if not in the opening credits." Yeah, he won.

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Multi-tasking: Giving James an evening bottle, snuggling Fudgie, watching basketball.

Visit to Bucks- March 2013
Cute! Snuggled up for movie night.

Some other recent visits with Janice and Darren: Janice visited me on my birthday, I saw Janice and Darren in DC in January, Janice and I went up to Warwick for Girls Weekend in November, and we took a trip into Manhattan in October. Wow! We've been doing really well with visits lately!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

William B's First Birthday! 2013

Friday was William's first birthday! We were lucky that we were able to go since it was Kevin's spring break. Sarah and Donald had a little family gathering. This let me pretend that I'm an official part of their awesome family. I'm especially attached because I got to know their siblings and parents pretty well while we were all attending law school. Sarah's family visited a lot and Donald's siblings were attending UVA undergrad while we were in law school.

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
Sarah, William, and Donald

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
William with his doting grandparents

We had kebab-style chicken and rice which is so awesome for a children's birthday party. And then after the happy birthday song we had the most delicious cupcakes. The best part was how happy William was after everyone sang him happy birthday and clapped. He's got the cutest dimpliest smile.

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
Singing happy birthday

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
William is delighted

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
Yummy cupcakes!

James was medium-well-behaved according to me, and poorly behaved according to Kevin. This discrepancy is probably due to the fact that Kevin mostly chased him around while I snapped lots of photos. One of James's sticking points is that he loves Curious George, and one of the helium balloons was of Curious George. He kept insisting the decoration be taken down so he could play with it. At one point he managed to untie the balloons himself and bring them over to William (perhaps to share?). When Kevin retied the balloons with a knot, James decided that his friendship with Kevin was over. Needless to say, James exhibited no interest in playing with the other toddlers.

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
Hey, William, I stole your balloons.

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
Cousin Penelope goes for the cupcakes!

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
James essentially has his bad behavior rewarded.

We're all excited to see William grow up. He's been standing on his own a little and any day he will have those life-changing first steps. Happy birthday, William!

William B's 1st Birthday 2013
Group photos rock!

I can't believe it's been a year since we first met William! Also read more about the last time we saw William in Nashville.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Teresa and JJ- March 2013

Last time I visited Teresa and JJ, Teresa was disappointed she didn't get to spend time with James and Kevin. So this time we made sure we had time for all of us to spend some serious quality time. We spent a little time letting our boys get to know each other. They got along great, possibly in part because they look and act like they could be brothers. (Good luck figuring out who their parents are!) Once they were acquainted, we took them to the National Portrait Gallery.

Teresa and JJ- March 2013
A pensive JJ and a happy Teresa

Teresa and JJ- March 2013
Brothers from different mothers, JJ and James.

Teresa and JJ- March 2013
Stripe twins, JJ and Kevin!

Teresa and JJ- March 2013
He is so adorable you guys, even these cute pictures don't do him justice

The Portrait Gallery was the perfect place to go because it was mostly toddler friendly in that there almost nothing at ground level. The one exception that stood out was an extremely valuable portrait of George Washington that I'm sure James would have loved to destroy if given the opportunity. Kevin and I made him hold our hands while James repeatedly indicated that he was "stuck," one of his favorite words for both situations where he is indeed stuck and situations where we are restraining him in some way. JJ was the perfect child and napped quietly in his stroller. Another reason I was excited to go to the Portrait Gallery is that it was closed for many of the years that I lived in the DC metro area so I had actually never been before. It did not disappoint! I would love to go back actually because we only had time for one floor of exhibits.

Teresa and JJ- March 2013
Outside the National Portrait Gallery

Portrait Gallery- March 2013
James on the loose inside the Portrait gallery

Read more about Teresa and JJ or more about our other family museum trips. Also, here are our recent trips to Washington, DC.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Spring Break - Woo! A Retrospective

Kevin's on Spring Break! The most exciting thing about Spring Break these days is that Kevin is home to help with James, but we are going to use the opportunity to do some fun things this week. I'm looking forward to it. Here are some fun Spring Breaks from our past!

1998- My freshman year of college- I went to Syracuse and went to my first concert ever, The Rolling Stones in the Bridges to Babylon tour.

1999- My sophomore year of college- Vicky, Yeon, Candice and I went to London, Brighton, and Bath, and Candice and I also took the Chunnel to Paris for a day. This was Kevin's Freshman year at college and he went to Boston to visit his friend Casey. They went to a Celtics game on St. Patrick's Day and crashed a party at Boston University!

London 1999
Candice, Vicky, Yeon, and me in London

Brighton, England 1999
Candice and I in Brighton

Bath, England 1999
Bath, England

Paris 1999
Candice and I in Paris

2000- My junior Year of college- I went to visit Candice on her study abroad program in Prague. We also went to Berlin and Budapest. So fun! This was Kevin's sophomore year of college and he went camping in the Blue Ridge with Brady, Briggs, Lukas, and Betsy.

Prague, Czech Republic 2000
Old Town, Prague

Budapest, Hungary 2000
Castle District in Budapest

Berlin, Germany 2000
Candice and I at the Berlin Wall 

2001- My senior year of college, Janice, Soraya, and I went to Miami. It was Kevin's junior year (but he graduated early so it was his last Spring Break) and he went to Daytona Beach with some high school friends.

Miami 2001
Me and Janice in Miami

2002-2004- I foolishly assumed adults did not "do Spring Break."

2005- Allison and I went to Miami. We didn't think of it as "Spring Break" per se, but it was March and we went to Miami so I'm sticking to it.

Miami Beach 2005
Me and Allison in Miami

2006- My 1L year of law school, Katy, Sarah and I went to Katy's beach house in South Carolina, and celebrated my birthday near Charleston.

Edisto Island, SC 2006
Me and Sarah having birthday drinks

2007- My 2L year of law school, Brian, Katy, Sarah W, Paul, Mihai, and I went on a cruise to Costa Maya, Cozumel, Guatemala, and Belize. The departure and return port was New Orleans.

New Orleans 2007
Sarah, me, Brian, and Paul in New Orleans

Costa Maya, Mexico 2007
Paul, Sarah, Brian, and me in Costa Maya, Mexico

Guatemala 2007
At a Spanish fort in Guatemala (with Sarah)

Lamanai, Belize 2007
Sarah, Katy, Brian, and me in Belize

Cozumel 2007
Being ridiculous in Cozumel!

2008- My 3L year of law school, Katy, Sarah, Donald, Brian, Julie, Josh, and I went to Katy's beach house in South Carolina, and then to Audra and Rob's wedding in North Carolina with Roger and Kevin. For Kevin's Spring Break we went to Arizona to visit his family with his brother Andrew.

Charleston, SC 2008
Me, Brian, Sarah, and Julie in Charleston

Grand Canyon
Andrew, Kevin, and me at the Grand Canyon

2009- I did a 20-hour roadtrip to Ohio and back, with my parents to try on my wedding dress at the dressmaker's. Again, I didn't think of it as Spring Break at the time-- but a 20-hour roadtrip! Holy cow!

Ohio Trip 2009
Dad and I at the top of the Miamisburg Mound

2010- Since Kevin is a professor, he still gets a week off every year during this time, so in 2010 we did a trip to Cartagena, Colombia.

Cartagena, Colombia 2010
The Castillo de San Felipe de Barajas in Cartagena

2011- Well, James was born conveniently during Kevin's Spring Break, so Kevin was able to stay with me for the first 5 days before going back to work.

James at 2 Days Old 2011
Spring Break - woo!

2012- Kevin, James, and I went to Northern Virginia, DC, and Charlottesville for the first time as a family. Kevin and I also went to Roger and Lina's wedding.

Washington, DC 2012
First family trip to Washington, DC

Charlottesville, VA 2012
First family trip Charlottesville, VA

We will be going to NoVa and DC again this year. Looking forward to it!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

St. Patrick's Day 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Woo! We kicked off Kevin's Spring Break last night with a St.Patrick's Day bar crawl. We celebrated early, because if St. Patrick's Day falls on Sunday, Saturday is the designated party day. And then Sunday is also the party day. Haha, no, but we are celebrating some more today with Kevin's delicious corned beef sandwiches. They are pretty amazing actually.

Grandma Kathy babysat James for us. Brady came in from Philly to party, and the three of took the LIRR into the city. It started snowing on our way over. We met a green-eye-shadowed Sarah at Dempsey's. Lukas got sick and couldn't join us, but he generously encouraged his nurse Sarah to join us anyway. Dempsey's was a lot of fun because we got there early so we got a table and they played fun dance music and Irish jigs.

St. Patrick's Day 2013
Sarah, Brady, Kevin, and me at Dempsey's

St. Patrick's Day 2013
The ladies

St. Patrick's Day 2013
The menfolk: Kevin, Jon, and Brady

For dinner, we though Vietnamese made perfect sense for St. Patrick's Day. Last year we got sushi for dinner, so maybe there's an Irish beer-Asian food symbiosis. Alternatively, I have a Pavlov's dog response to seeing Jon, because nearly everytime we visit him and Ben in Brooklyn, we pick up Vietnamese after. Anyway, V-Nam Cafe had awesome banh-mi, and very good Pho.

St. Patrick's Day 2013
V-Nam's Cafe

We briefly considered going to Swift, but they had a cover and they were crowded so it would have been a lose-lose. So we head over to Scratcher's where things were less Irish but way more chill.

St. Patrick's Day 2013
Snuggling at Scratchers

After Sarah left, the rest of us decided we were better off in Brooklyn so we could easily catch the LIRR back from Atlantic without a lot of advance planning. We ended up at 4th Avenue Bar which we really like, and we missed fully three trains back while we got more drinks, expressed our outrage about drone strikes and weighed the relative merits of Harper's or The New Yorker. Um, yeah.

St. Patrick's Day 2013
The Clous celebrating at home today

Last St. Patrick's Day we went out in our Irish neighborhood with Jon and Michele. The previous year, in 2011, I was pregnant, so Jon, Briggs, Lukas, and Sarah came here for Kevin's corned beef sandwiches and some canned Guinness. Here are some St. Patrick's Day pictures from 2002-2011.
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