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4 posts from February 2009

February 21, 2009

The Birthday Boy

He had an exciting day catching up with friends and family, many of whom traveled a great distance to be with him on his special day(s).  Not only was today his birthday, but Sunday will be his baptism.  Immediately following the baptism, if all goes well and we aren't washed away by the massive amounts of much-needed rain, we will host the revelers at our house for food, fun, and more food.

IMG_2182 Since we are having the big party on Sunday, we thought we would keep Friday somewhat low-key.  We grilled a few steaks and veggies, and had the grandfathers, uncle and a few friends over.  We opted to delay the gifs, but couldn't resist a cake, especially a red velvet cake with cake batter ice cream from Cold Stone Creamery.  We gave him a piece and he did this*.

There really isn't much more to say.  It was a quiet day, and the birthday boy was his usual happy and entertaining self. We are so grateful we were able to have friends and family for his first birthday dinner, especially given how we do not live very close to any of them (at the moment).  *video to be uploaded soon*

February 20, 2009

Happy Birthday

DPA675F-530 to my lovely little boy.  By U.S. time, we are early, but if we were still in Iceland, Nicholas would be one year and 2 hours old. 

I will add a picture of The Boy at one year later today, when he is 'officially' a year (and not sound asleep), but needed to post before we got caught up in the excitement of the day.  We already have one grandpa in town, as well as an auntie and uncle and more on the way tomorrow. Nick5

Nick3Happy Birthday, dear Nicholas.  My little, strong, sweet, carefree, loves to throw his arm around me and bury his face in my neck (which his sisters find incredibly loving and adorable) sweetheart .  Happy first birthday, Nicholas Quinn Dinoia!

February 19, 2009

Our Reward

for a really good rain today.  Not that we needed a reward, as the rain was one in and of itself.  In caIMG_0377  you haven't heard, our part of California is not only having an energy crisis (energy issues...too many people using too much?) but also is in a state of severe drought.  I snapped this photo (well, snapped is a relative term with an iPhone) after we left Kelsey's Daisy meeting today, while trying to get in the car to hurry to CCD and not get soaked in the process. 

When we first arrived last summer, I was depressed by our surroundings.  Everything was a deep shade of...brown.  This was not the California I imagined, nor the California that I have heard about for years.  Green, fresh, farms, vineyards, those words came to mind prior to our arrival in July.  Once we made it to San Ramon, I wondered how one could contemplate lighting a candle, much less a cigarette. It looked as though one scritch of the match, and everything would be gone (except the country clubs; either they use very 'life-like' turf or they are responsible for millions of gallons of water waste).

We finally had our first rain in October, and it was a good one.  Nothing spectacular, but steady rain throughout the weekend. I think we had a few days of rain in November, and then an odd evening here and there in December.  January rolled around, and while more frequent, we could also go a week or two with nothing.  Then February stopped by and it seems like we have not had a dry day yet.
So, for those of you contemplating a trip here, bring your galoshes, umbrella, and a jacket, as hopefully (can you tell we need the rain?) you will put them to good use!  

In other news, Nicholas has taken his first few steps.  Last night, as we were playing with the jolly little guy, he just stood up and headed straight for Peter!  He tried again a few moments later, and completed a few more steps.  He wasn't terribly thrilled with the idea (but loved the attention).  Technically, those may not even be his first steps.  I swear he took them at the afore-mentioned Girl Scout meeting.  However, I was the only one watching and somewhat hard to prove it happened (no photographic evidence).

Last, but not least, I must mention Kelsey's most recent question to me...well, second most recent interesting question, the first being (when discussing how my father would figure out how to get from the Oakland airport to his hotel) "Does he HAVE a GPS?"  I am guessing she thinks anyone of the male persuasion must have one in order to, well, breathe.  I reassured her, and she decided Grandpa Kirk would be just fine.

Her other question?  Last night as I was braiding her hair (yep, we are the Ingalls family) before bed, she asked me, "Mom, what do you want to do when you grow up?"

Now I could take that in many different ways, and opted for the most meaningful:  that I still seemed young enough to have time to decide what I might want to do when not busy chasing The Boy around the house.  I pondered this for a moment when she piped up, "I know, you can be an artist!"

My mouth dropped open.  It is commonly known that I am perhaps the worst artist on the planet.  I totally missed the slash and line period of painting and thus have never felt I have much to contribute to the community of the arts.

"Well" I said, "I am not sure I can draw very well!"

"Hmm" she said, not wanting to upset me (or she drew a complete blank on my lack of talent in that arena)..."could you be a police woman?"

I didn't tell her that I thought one agent/cop sort in the family was enough or why I thought it was enough.  Hmm, a police woman.  Not sure that will happen, either.  However, I have several thoughts and at one point will put them into action. The only hitch is that all will likely involve more schooling, and that will be iffy at best depending on Peter's job at the moment.  Call me crazy, I am not into the online school thing (as popular as it may be), I would love to have the classroom experience again. 

Sadly, the question was never truly answered.  Then again, we had braids to finish, books to read, and bed covers to snuggle under.  Life is pretty darn good when you are six, if I do say so myself.


February 07, 2009

I am once again

woefully behind on the task of jotting down my thoughts.  I write post after post in my head, only to collapse in heap every night, exhausted and too tired to note the 18,000 things I must not forget.  I realized today that I have updates going back to October that I would like to make.  In other words, there may be more new stuff soon, but it will be back-dated.  If you are one of my beloved readers with RSS, don't let the dates throw you off.

Tonight's post isn't anything really noteworthy, more of a note to myself.  Kelsey has been super-creative lately and the addition of her craft desk to my craft room/Pete's office has just fueled her imagination.  She made a card for a friend the other day, and spent quite a bit of time perfecting it.  She put it in a 'safe place', but then could not locate it tonight.  She wanted to give it to her friend at the friend's Valentine-making party tomorrow, so realized she might need to start over.

She created a poster (of sorts) instead.  When finished, it ended up being 2 sheets of paper taped together to create a long, narrow poster.  Unfortunately, she was not happy with it.  She came up to my room, showed me and then whispered in my ear, "I need to say the "S" word."

In our house, the "s" word is not another word for, er, waste, shall we say, but the word "st*pid".  The girls are well aware that we don't think it is a necessary word, but understand sometimes they feel the need to say it.  Tonight was one of those nights.

Kelsey then whispered, "I think this picture is stupid."

PICT0116 When pressed for an explanation, it turns out that the house and garage she drew did not come out quite right.  She was frustrated with herself, and wanted to express her feelings.  So, I let her despite my assertions I didn't feel that way. 

After getting her thoughts out, she marched off to her room to get ready for bed, and likely consider a new drawing for her friend.  I then realized that while she was upset with herself, it was much less than usual.  She didn't go on and on, and seemed to realize occasional do-overs won't hurt anyone.  And, no, not anything anyone else wouldn't have done...just so happy she had the confidence to tell me and deal with her disappointment so carefully. In the past, she has been a bit more vocal, and her frustrations sometimes seem to run deeper.

Tonight instead of freaking out, or worrying it to death, she just accepted that she could create a new project later.  No, not thinking about how fast she is growing up, or that it seems like she was only just a toddler, why do you ask?

Note:  The above picture is from November 2004, when we stopped at the Children's Museum in Pittsburgh on our way to Ohio for Thanksgiving.  This picture was taken in the section dedicated to Mr. Rogers.  To think I thought they were both so big at that point in time...