November 2009

Move over teenagers. Moody first grade boys are the new source of angst.

In 6 days my darling son, my first born child, the one who draws me love notes and writes indiscernible sentences on random notebooks, will make 6 years.

Apparently, this is also the same age that boys go through THE CHANGE.  As I was once a teenage girl, I understand the stress.  The confusion.  The embarrassment.  The sneaking pads around in little purses, secretly wondering who has switched to tampons (shhhh! don’t say it so loud!) and wondering when to be so bold as to try.  The world just doesn’t UNDERSTAND!  And it’s SO UNFAIR!!!

I am counting on re-living those wonder years with my daughter (woo-hoo!) but it was a bit of a surprise to find them in my darling first-grade sweetheart boy.  Since when is every piece of music known to humanity BORING?  Why is it that the trial of bathing, eating, walking, dressing, and forheavenssake BREATHING, so totally and completely impossible?  Do you know how UNFAIR his life is?

Okay, I confess.  We ask him to make his bed in the morning, which can be a challenge considering the incredible athletic feats he conducts each night within it, but we figure it’s a good stepping stone to the roofing work and diamond mining he’ll start next month.

We’re taking it all in stride.  The mood swings, the sullen appearance, the sudden outbursts of tears.  We’re here for him, even if our being in the room makes it IMPOSSIBLE for him to CONCENTRATE.

If nothing else, it helps us appreciate those bright moments of beauty.  The sloppy kisses, the shared reading, the begs for nighttime cuddles.  He’ll grow out of this moody phase, yes.  But I’d take it a hundred times over if I could keep those sweet moments with it.


Comments (4)


Photohunt: Music

It’s been a long time since I’ve participated in Photohunt, but I saw that the theme was MUSIC and felt compelled to jump in.  We’re in New Orleans, forgoodnesssake.

But, um, all my old French Quarter/Jazz Fest/Mardi Gras pictures are on the network and we’re in the middle of backing up.  Plus, I thought of this picture, which is conveniently on my laptop.

Taken in Ayr, Scotland, August 2009.  MUSIC.


I know, bagpipes get a bad rap.  But you know what I learned about Scotland?  Bagpipes make darn good sense there.  The way the sound weaves in and out with the wind?  Perfectly fitting and very beautiful.  I can’t think of a better sound for Scotland, honestly.  It was a joy to hear them there.


Art & Photography

Comments (6)



Stuff we’ve learned in the past day or so:

  • Mahoney’s makes darn good po-boys.
  • Professional-grade firewall set-up has Paul very geeked.
  • Kate may have some confusion regarding which way to move on the game board, but still reigns as the household Candyland Champ.
  • The internet is a good resource for finding Pikachu coloring pages, unfortunately.

Stuff we’re trying to figure out:

  • How to convince Kate that wearing shoes on the right feet will not cause her legs to melt off her body.
  • The trick to the perfect soft cooked egg.
  • What age parents become modest about time alone in the bathroom around their kids.


Comments (2)


Where in you can watch several of my hairs go gray.

This is how two kids roll.

One decides to do something. Like sing and dance on a toy chest.

Then the other can’t take the lack of attention. So he must DO SOMETHING.

Most particularly, something that will annoy, bother, or otherwise sidetrack the activities of that sibling.

And then, things go downhill quickly.


Comments (0)


Religions Mix

“Mommy, who is the Prisoner of Azkaban?”

“You have to read the book to find out.”

“Is it Dumbledore?”




“Mr. Snape?”




Comments (2)


Household Projects

Will draws.  He made this sitting in his bed and brought it to me before he returned to go to sleep.

wt (1)

He also wrote this sentence in one of his many “books.” He read it to me, thankfully.  I needed help.

Translation: “When the storm comes to the city, run but you can’t hide.”


Kate has also got a project.  It has to do with Bugs Bunny.

Paul is also working on a project.   I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves.

wt (2)

It’s growing.  And has a lot (A LOT!) more growing to do.

wt (3)

Arts & Photography
Mi Familia

Comments (2)


Termite poo, illustrated.


See that tiny hole above?  There are a few more going up the wall, straight up from this one.  They leave the poo as they slowly eat up the board in the wall.  Thankfully, these are a slow-moving variety that tend to chew on one board and leave the others alone.  At least, that’s what we found out the first time the termite guys came and treated the wall.

They will return today and open up this, the exterior wall in Kate’s room.  Hopefully, they will do this from the outside.  And hopefully, this will mean the end of freaking out over finding termite poo on Kate’s pillow.


UPDATE: No wall-opening required.  They found no actual termites during the visit (surprised us, too) and filled all holes completely (much more thoroughly than the first visit, actually).  *fingers crossed*  We’ll be opening the wall up eventually when we re-side the house.  Hopefully everything can wait until then.

Family Life in NOLA

Comments (6)


Paddle Boat Recovery

On the afternoon of Day Two of Paul’s surgery recovery, we visited City Park.

boat 2

The kids saw the paddle boats.  Paul said it was okay.  That he was okay.  So we rented a paddle boat and rode it around City Park for a half hour.

boat 3

For the record, this is not a very good thing to do a few days after surgery.

boat 5

Nonetheless, we paddled around the museum, the sculpture garden, the ducks, the pelicans in the trees.  Will paddled for a little while, too.  (I don’t suggest this to folks who want to be able to walk when you get off of the boats.)

boat 4

The ducks were not afraid of the boats and swam right up looking for food, just in case.

boat 6

We had to go under several low bridges, which Kate loved.

boat 8

For the record, Kate is really cute.

boat 1

Family Life in NOLA
Mi Familia
Special Family Moments

Comments (1)


Learning from the Soaps

P: OH MY, have you seen how much Sam* looks like Will?

H: I know, isn’t he adorable?

P: If I didn’t know better, I’d have to ask for a paternity test.

H: Paternity?  For who?

P: For Will!

H: What?  How would THAT have worked.

P: Well, they were here for Mardi Gras a few years back.  WHO KNOWS what happened then between you all.

H: Will was ALREADY BORN then.

P: So?  Have soap operas taught you NOTHING?

*This is not the Sam you’re looking for.


Comments (1)


Decompressing. Visiting my happy place.

Today ended a long string of events that spanned over our lives since September.  Conferences, weekend workshops, meetings, travel, presentations, deadlines.  Today’s event was a Children’s Health Fair at the Louisiana Children’s Museum that was coordinated by the New Orleans Schweitzer Fellows.  This incredible group of allied health graduate students organized nearly 20 local agencies to attend — and had everything from dental health games to human body education dolls (think learning about how we’re all the same *inside*) to therapeutic miniature horses used in treatment with the chronically ill.  They did this while continuing community service projects (the core focus of their Fellowship responsibilities) and their ‘normal’ course/rotation/lab schedule.  It was a good way to end this string of non-stop events because it was inspiring and encouraging.

Things aren’t stopping here.  I’ve got a weekend meeting retreat to plan, sites to visit, reports to review and comment on, photography exhibit layout work, and nonprofit management type business to attend to.   Once I get ahead on these things, I’ll be able to turn back to the dissertation.  But this all seems more feasible with the ‘big’ dates behind us.

I’m catching my breath.  And enjoying the memory of how happy the kids were this morning at the Crystal Palace.

disney 8

disney 2

disney 1

disney 3

disney 4



Comments (0)