Orange Julius, Rave, You know the place...

It's been mad rainy here recently, which is good b/c they say there's a drought and the water table is spread thin, etc. We had a nice storm Sunday night (a nice end to a nice lazy day) and afterwards there was a big rainbow (that you can't see in this picture).

That morning, Ro and I got up and walked to the coffeeshop and got a paper and mama got to sleep in until 9!!

Liz dressed like an Easter egg for the occasion. Rowie wore a Carolina Panthers jersey. They are a sports team. I assume it's squash or cricket or something...

Rowan: "Hey mama, you zig, I'll zag!"

Rowan has been doing very well with Ms. A., his sitter. Today the boy made his very first painting! With a sponge!
He came home with a little red paw from where he splashed it in the paint.
I can't help but think of my brother's famous "pumpkin pie" painting from his early, toddler-era work.

Kittens persist in living in our house.
The Lem is ever vigilant for new places to creep/nestle into. A while ago, she spent most of the night closed in the linen closet, tucked between two towels.

My friend Klaus, a German student I met in NYC (now doing a degree in American Studies) just started a blog. Maybe he'll shout out to kittens? (they're way American).

Today, me and Ro went to the mall. We bought a book called Hippos Go Berserk. In this story a lonely hippo invites not one, not two, but 44 guest hippos to his house for a party. We had a lot of fun, but at the end of the day, Rowie was

Rowan: "Hey Papi, I've been meaning to ask you...what's up with the sports jersey all of the sudden? I thought you were a 'poet,' etc. I mean I've never heard a game on the radio in the house...you know. Or anything...It's not like we watch the games, you know--it's just....I'm just saying, I mean...just sayin'."

Rowan: C'est fin! Adieu! Adieu! Adieu!


i'll give ya 100 bucks for it.

It has been a while since I posted (I feel like I start 93% of my posts with this very sentence . . . it has become reflexive). I'm too lazy to upload pictures, but I did want to give a shout-out to our wonderful recent guests. Andi, as always, was a champ. I subjected her to a work presentation during which she had to demonstrate an exercise move. She handled it like a pro. This presentation took place in a church basement, so the bathroom graffiti was the best! Rather than proclaiming who's a ho and/or what number to call for a good time, 100% of this stall's scribblings dealt with loving Jesus. That Jesus chap--if he wasn't seated at the right hand of the Father I'd think he was a real playa! A few days prior to Andi's arrival, Great-Aunt Marg came all the way from New Hampshire. She cheerfully put up with a vociferous (read: screaming) Rowie and it was awesome having her around. And it goes without saying that recent influxes of grandparents have added fun (and lots and lots of food) to our lives.

In a couple weeks, we'll be venturing to Maryland for Ro's longest trip ever. I'm a little preemptively worried at the prospect of 6 hours in the car with him, but it'll be worth it--we're psyched to see Mercer's family and eat the hell out of some crabs.

This post is coming to an abrupt end, as I just realized that it's hard to keep my eyes open, but I'll close with this Craigslist ad I just ran across (Merc & I are looking to buy a new car). I can't tell if it's hilarious or I'm just that sleepy.

I have a 81 honda civic that needs a carb and wheels. The wheels left on another car. Now I know junk guys will answer this and thats just fine, but as you have seen I want 250 dollars I don't want 100 dollars or I would have advertised it for 100 dollars. Don't embarass yourself or take the chance of hearing somthing you may really not want to hear. Will run with a carb. I have the title. Could be made a gas saving driver with a carb.

Who dares me to call him and offer him a nice Benjamin for his '81 Civic?


the usual suspects

Now that R is growing up, getting a rudimentary grip on his nervous system and becoming interested in toys and the world around him, we have lots of new things to worry about as parents. For example, we recently learned that R is actually part of an international crime syndicate. Since citizenship starts at home, L and I have rounded up some local crooks and made some disturbing discoveries...

This is the crew R has been running with. This is Mr. Carrot. He may look sweet and anthropomorphic like an escaped cell of family-friendly animation, but inside he's tough. He smiles right through interrogation. He's indomitable, he's got his feet planted firmly in the ground, he's made of steel. You show him a grater, he just grins at you.

This is Senor Pina, expert in intelligence, ex-KGB double agent and the real power behind Castro. His feet are sewn on backwards because he always covers his tracks. The heart-shaped scars that mar his face earned him the nickname "Lover Boy" back when he worked the street with Putin.

No one knows what this guy is supposed to be. And that's the way he likes it. He has 96 different names in 96 different countries. Is he a caterpillar? An undersea crab? An abacus?

Here's the ringleader's muscle, Davidson Bear. He wears his name on his shirt so you'll know who's whoopin' you. He's the child of circus performing polar bears. But even though he's hard, DB also has a soft side to his personality.

Finally, we get to the brains of the operation...

You guessed it...Kaiser Soze.


Father's Day Scoot

As I mentioned last time, L and I are now solidly in the realm of family life. I listen for the air quality warnings in the morning before I listen to Morning Edition on Liberal Media. Today they had to invent a new one--Code Purple. It's worse than Code Red (which means "don't breathe"). I think Purple must mean "run for your life." There are wild fires to the east of us, and they are causing all the non-breathing.

Anyway, here is our family whiteboard, with our domestic calendar. Luckily, we have two of these things. This is what we use the second one for:

The newest addition to R's artillery of fun is the Rainforest Jumperoo. He uses one at the sitter's house and spends much of his waking time demanding to be held upright as if he were standing, so I anticipate this toy being a hit.

We had a visit from Auntie Dre-dre'z over the weekend. She read R all of the conservative opinion columns (psych!)

Since Buckley is gone, looks like George Will will be the ranking conservative capo in charge of mentioning Ronald Reagan every time he is asked about anything.

You can't read it but Rowie's shirt says, "Riding in Style Makes the Ladies Smile."

In a fit of helpful good manners, Audie did all the laundry last week. However, it was exhausting and she needed a nap.

Which brings us to Father's Day! In celebration of my first chance to demand kudos from the tribe for fulfilling my evolutionary imperative, we held extensive Greco-Roman wrestling matches. Davidson Bear pinned Rowan in a steel cage grudge-match.

Here, Liz displays our newfound parental superpower: passing the boy off to guests.

Finally, R is introduced to what the managers of the world call "sticks 'n' carrots." In this case both stick and carrot are a one-legged lion wth purple ears.


Ozone alert

It's been a long time sequestered in this pillow fort. We've been busy. Luckily, we have a big white dry-erase board to keep track of the weeks. As grandpa S pointed out, this is a sure-fire sign of the merciless onset of family life. Pick up boots! Windshield repair! Pediatrician 9:45!

In addition, we continue to entertain grandparents, friends, and now, great-aunts. Last night, spelled by GranmaS and AuntMarg, Liz and I went out to eat dinner, like, together, and...alone. Our solicitous waiter asked us if we were celebrating, possibly because Liz was enjoying a glass of champagne and I a gin martini, and we told him it was our first post-partum dinner date. He told us he has two kids and that they have grandparents two doors down. We lamented the distance between Rowie and the granmas!

However, he seems to be getting along with his sitter very well, and we're pleased with the arrangement.

Here you can see Rowie sharing with his furry sisters.

Big Ro is working on rolling over, grabbing at Davidson Bear and Leon, and honing his parents' patience to a fine point.

We recently had a visit from AuntieB-Nut and Sister C. We tried some of the BBQ from Harrisons Restaurant.

It's been hot as H-E-double hockey sticks down here. That means it's naked baby season.

Me and Rowie listen to lots of NPR. Earlier today a caller on the Diane Ream Show kept cutting Diane off. What kind of a person would cut off Diane Ream??? It's like kicking kittens! Like feeding animal crackers to real animals! Like presidential signing statements! Like Gitmo! Unamerican!

Ro and me weren't mad, we were just a little disappointed.

And, in case you forgot...


craisy ginger

We've had a fun week here in the pillowfort. It's getting hotter, so we've used the stroller a couple times. Rowie seems to like it. He likes seeing what's what.

Liz is thinking about leaving public health behind for a career as a stroller model.

This past week, R had his first babysitter experience. Ms. S from next door watched him for a few hours T/W while I was tutoring. He came through the experience okay (he basically slept the whole time) and this afternoon we're going to finalize arrangements with a provider to watch him part time during the week. It's pretty tough to hand him over to anyone else, but there isn't much of a way around it.

Here's the boy. In case you forgot, he and I have matching boots.

R seems to be discovering that he has fingers and that he can use some of his fingers to hold the other fingers. As a result he seems to be rubbing his hands together mischievously much of the time.

We borrowed a Bumpo from our local baby-people friends B&C. Their son liked it, and Ro took to it well. Here he is, not quite having a staring contest with himself (who he may not yet recognize).

As some of you know, Liz is a proponent of kitten liberation. As a result, I spend most of my rhetorical persuasive energy fending off demands like: LEASHES FOR KITTENS! LEASHES FOR KITTENS! Well friends, this past week, I lost a crucial battle in that polemical eruption of dander, claws and the great outdoors.

I'll leave you to guess how this turned out.

Last evening we had some crazy weather. Violent t-storms with bubblegum-sized rocks of hail came down, making great PINGing noises off our gas grill and ricocheting off the neighbor's utility shed like deep flies off the Green Monster. Kittens were wigged! Rowan, unperturbed. Mama and Papi, delighted. Look at the hail!