“How Was I Made?” October 2017

Happy November, Chicken Little.

Here’s a chronicle of recent happenings in October/November 2017. 

The latest 1 Second Everyday Video:
In September I dedicated the 1-second video clips to Mommy, in celebration of our 5-year anniversary. So in October, it was all about Clementine. She’s been a constant companion five years before you were born. She has been Mommy’s girl since 2008. We had some great sunny weather this month, so fortunately all the clips of dog walks are bright with no drips. Clementine especially likes when Gaga and Grandpa visit; Grandpa pays a lot of attention to her with petting and walking.

On this video, there’s only one time when Boo isn’t in it – and it was the clip I couldn’t resist using – Mommy hitting the bullseye with the apple slingshot at the Pumpkin Patch in Peshastin, WA.

What you’re doing these days:

You’ve been invited to ten birthdays in the last several months – everyone in your little world has been turning 4, including yourself. Your party was just two days ago. Mommy arranged for a dozen of your friends to play at Seattle Gymnastics play area for an hour and then have cake and fruit. It worked out really well. You all got exhausted, everyone went home soon after that, and there was no cleanup, especially of our own house. Mommy and Nana helped you write thank you cards immediately.

Your best friends Leana and Caroline.

You were shy and needed Mommy’s help to blow your candle out.

You continue to be in a Mommy phase which has lasted for most of this year, which makes it more of an era than a phase. Only Mommy can take you through your morning and evening routines. If I try to help out while Mommy is in the house, you revolt. During Nana and Poppop’s visit, on the weekend of your birthday, you threw the worst temper tantrum I’ve ever seen from you. Mommy and Boo were getting ready to go on a run, so you wanted to come. You leeched yourself to Mommy’s leg, always wanting more hugs and kisses, sobbing and clinging. Finally, Mommy went out the door with Boo into the driving rain, but you followed in your footy jammies. Mommy gave you one last hug and kiss, then she took off running, not for exercise but to flee your attachment. You fled too, and I finally took you down on across the street. I carried you back into the house kicking and writhing, which continued inside the house, all witnessed by Nana. Your efforts turned to damage, throwing all the recycling, Boo’s pawtectors and shoes on the floor in a rageful episode. I stayed by the door, making sure you didn’t run out again, and Nana stood at the base of the stairs, aghast. Eventually, when you ran out of things to throw, you tried to strip naked out of your jammies, but your had boots on over them which made your jammies trail after you like a bad cape attached at your ankles instead of your shoulder. I’m not sure how you came down from this, but I managed to talk some reasoning and shame into you, convincing you that Mommy would be awfully sad and mad when she returned home from her run to see what happened. So I helped you back into your jammies and we together put all the strewn stuff back on the shelf. The last pawtector was returned just as Mommy keyed back into the house.

With winter coming, Mommy got you a new puffy coat to replace the one you’ve outgrown from last year. It is pure pink, and you were very proud to show me that you are able to zip it up all by yourself. This marks such an advancement for you, especially in your independence, since this is an everyday task you don’t need an adult to help you with.

You put on a dance for us on Tuesday night after swimming as you and Mommy were getting ready for bed. I was downstairs grading papers as I heard the pounds of your feet on the ceiling. The thumps continued, then were joined by lyrics, “Look at my vagina, look at my vagina,” in a snappy jingle (you love to rhyme and drum at the same time). Then Mommy called down to me, “Daddy, you need to come up here.” You put on a dance show for us, this time with those words and accompanying rhyming gibberish like “take a trip to China” or “hooka hooka hyna.”

Before Thanksgiving, we stopped by the library to pick up some fresh books and videos. It had been raining, so there was a big puddle that you spied as we got out of the car. You headed straight for it, leaping high in the air and stomping down with a large splash – then you realized that the puddle was fairly deep and you were not wearing your boots ūüôĀ Most of your tights and all of your shoes were soaked, and you started to bawl. I took you into the library and, after taking off your shoes and socks and leaving them at the entrance, we checked out items quickly. Your sobbing ended quickly after we got into the library – you even wanted me to read some of the books there in the library.

Thanksgiving at Nana and Poppops was fun with all of Mommy’s family there. The next closest person in age to you were your aunties at 42 years old, but you’re used to that and made some fun times with the adults. The highlights this year were Thanksgiving Dinner at Cousin Eric’s on the Maryland shore, celebrating Poppop’s birthday, and going to the Nutcracker (and sitting through it all) with your grandparents!

This conversation you had with Mommy and I figured I’d just copy it down and let Mommy handle it.

You: Mommy, Did Boo get made by God?
Mommy: Boo was made by her Mommy and Daddy
You: How was I made?
Mommmy: How do you think you were made?
You: God
Mommy: You were made by Mommy and Daddy.
You: But the other people were made by God
Mommy: The other people were made by their Mommies and Daddies.
You: Mommy, I’m hungry.

I tell you a lot of stories – lately the stories have to have your three friends, Caroline, Leana, and Ruby. The last few episodes have had Mr. Whispery, the ghost from Halloween who is sad because he can’t eat candy or has lived in the same house for many years.

You’re getting better at telling your “Interrupting Cow” joke, but you still don’t get Hide and Seek. When I am the seeker and start to count, you ask me to help you hide in a place and then you tell me to, “go count and try and find me.”

We were all in the car listening to the Crosby Playlist, which includes your favorite sing along songs because you only like songs with words. The Hokey Pokey was playing and you asked Mommy to show you which was your right foot. 

A recording
This clip is from November 2017, just after you turned four. Lately you have incorporated Clementine into your play, much to her chagrin. You pull her over to where you are playing and engage her in your pretending. In this episode, I think you made up three other dogs, Kocho, Locho, and some other -ocho dog.

In my life these days:
I’m working on improving my crossword puzzle skill. Now I can finish the Monday puzzle with ease, and nearly Tuesdays.

Our ultimate frisbee team won the C-pool championship last weekend. We went on a late surge in the end of the season, getting out to early leads and playing good defense that didn’t allow the other team to advance into our territory. We also added a new couple who helped….Dennis and Amanda, who are going on three years with out team, have NY friends who just moved to Seattle and needed a team to play with.

I’m also getting ready to start a new Peabody Planner and think about what my 2018 New Year’s resolution will be. 

Here’s the November 1 Second Everyday half-minute. Notable clips that you’ll see include Dia de los Muertos parade, your Birthday Party, Kaelyn celebrating her new job, another date night, your first downhill ski, Friendsgiving, Thanksgiving in DC with Nana and Poppop, and a look at my long beard at the end of No-shave November.

The new Star Wars movie, The Last Jedi, comes out December 15th. I’m pumped again for another movie that has every indication of being just as good as the most recent two in 2016 and The Force Awakens in 2015. I’ve watched every trailer that’s been released. Mark Hamill, the original Luke Skywalker, plays a major role in this movie, as he trains the Force-blessed Rey to harness her powers. I don’t have tickets yet but hope to steal in a show as soon as possible. 

In the news:

There was another shooting in the US. As I write this, I can’t remember what the last one I commented on was because there seem to be one every few weeks, just about the time when the newspapers stop featuring the last one and my facebook and twitter feed cease to be filled with enraged folks calling for gun control.

Oh yeah, now I remember……a guy in Texas who was dishonorably discharged from the military and had been arrested for animal cruelty and beating his wife and family…..stormed into a church in Southerland Springs, TX and killed 26. He fled the scene in a truck, but then shot himself before he was apprehended.

There’s more political shit that I don’t care to comment on….like the tax bill, resignations by politicians who’ve been accused of sexual misdeeds, and a big special election for the Alabama senate seat between Roy Moore, another alleged sexual predator who refuses to give up the race, who is backed by president trump. 

A summary of a book or podcast I liked:

I just finished the S-town podcast – where an investigative journalist gets a tip about a murder from a polymath in rural Alabama. From the producers of Serial, S-town unfolds to reveal much more about Bibb County and it’s residents than the listener figures. I was swept into the story by the conversations with John B. McLemore, the whistle blower, and his phone conversations with the narrator.

I skimmed Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard, by Skip and Dan Heath. What I took from it was the two parts of a person, the emotional (The Elephant) and the Rational (The Rider), and how a person is trying to manage both. We think that The Rider in us is usually in charge, but it isn’t.

While at Nana and Poppop’s in DC over Thanksgiving I watched the 2015 movie Spotlight. Based on the true story of the Boston Globe team that exposed the epidemic catholic cover up of child molestation by priests, the movie shows the story of the investigators uncovering the layers of protection, and denial by police, prosecutors, and the Archdiocese. After the original story was released in 2002, scores of victims came forward and named priests who had committed the heinous acts. The quote that shook me most from the movie was, “It may take a village to raise a child, but it also takes a village to molest one.”

There’s a similar opening of a scandal lately with the, “Me too” movement of individuals coming forward to accuse men of sexual harassment. Matt Lauer, Senator Al Franken, Kevin Spacey and dozens more has created a storm of accusations, resignations, and media scrutiny. The Harvey Weinstein story seemed to galvanize victims to come out and share, which also began a social media #metoo viral release of individuals who have been sexually harassed in some way.

Time to wrap this baby up and start a new one, corazon. I love you and can’t wait to report what you’re doing next. 

Love, Daddy

Summer 2017

Happy September, Little Charger!

After 70 days or so of sun, Seattle now is getting sprinkles. Summer is over, but it has been a fantastic one. We’re gearing up for your FOURTH BIRTHDAY soon, which you have requested to be giraffe-themed. But before you turn four, let’s review what has happened in our lives in June, July, and August 2017.
 

The latest 1 Second Everyday Video:
June 2017: Graduation at school. I hosted a Math Department End-of-Year Dinner with games. My Grandmaster Ultimate team won the regionals, which earned us a spot at the National Championships in Denver in July. It was a contentious game, with lots of bickering and shouting accusations, which started with a foul call that I made as I tried to defend a pass in the endzone. Nana and Poppop visited on the last weekend of school. We took them to the cabin and Lake Wenatchee for the first time. They also met your teachers at school. We had a family dinner with the cousins since Mark, Melissa and family were about to leave for Europe for the summer. The last week of June we left for Costa Rica.

At the end of June, we met Misun, Stephen, Lillian, and Little Stephen in La Paila, a house up on the hill overlooking Samara bay in Costa Rica. We had some excursions to a macaw sanctuary, surfing in Nosara, and short trips down the hill into Samara for beach time and food, along with many hours in the pool, playing chess with Little Stephen, and talking with Marilou, the caretaker/chef of the property. You wouldn’t leave 12-year old Lillian alone, always wanting to be with her and take up her time.

 

 

 

 

In July, we returned home and had a 4th of July cookout at the Carneys in Seattle. I played two days at Potlatch, the big ultimate frisbee tournament in Redmond, and took you along. You played around a little, getting more red there than in Costa Rica, but you mostly stayed in the little tent watching movies. That was fine because I got to play and Mommy got some time off. Many of our days were spent eating breakfast together and then biking to school. I would come home to work on the patio or go to school to do some planning. Gaga, Grandpa, and the Indy Peabodys came to visit us for for a week, so you got lots of good cousin time, especially on Whidbey Island. Though your cousins and grandparents went back to the Midwest, the vacation continued when you and I flew back to IL for the first Peabody Camp.

I flew with you to Chicago where Gaga and Grandpa picked you up for a week of fishing, baking, driving the play car in the garage, and more playing with cousins. During that time, Mommy and I met in the Canadian Rockies for our kidless trip in Banff and Canmore, Canada. We kept trading pictures with Gaga throughout the week of our separate adventures; as we hiked around Lake Louise, biked in Canmore, and drove up to the Columbia Icefield, you were visiting the library, coloring, and tending to the garden out in the orchard.

Mommy and I came to IL to get you. I got to see my good friends Wayne and Chad and you, Mommy and I made a visit to see Grammy Dorothy.

 

 

 

Here’s my 1 Second Everyday video for July 2017. 

In August, the fun, and the guests, kept coming. Anita and Mack stayed with us on the ends of a hike around Mt. Rainier, Ray visited for a day, and Mark moved in to our spare bedroom. While Connor, Ashlan, and Melissa were able to stay more in Spain, Mark had to return to work and couldn’t go back to his house that they had rented until the end of August, so he lived with us! We celebrated his 40th birthday with an ice cream cake and the Petersons. We also saw your cousin Christiana and her Milman family. We started having many dinners out on the newly-finished patio!

 

 

 

My big summer project this year was to transform our backyard into a usable space. There used to be an area of wispy grass and pine needles. Now most of the backyard is paved with 2′ x 2′ concrete squares, laid down with care and urgency. It was a family endeavor, you shoveled a little, Mommy liked operating the gas-powered tamper, and I employed Uncle Andy and Grandpa when they were visiting. We finished the space by planting some bamboo, a Japanese maple, and another leafy-green species that will survive in our climate. I am very proud of the product and happy that it was finished before school started. 

 

 

September 2017

 

What you’re doing these days:
Every time we’re in the car or on the bike, you’re asking for a story. Earlier in the summer you wanted nothing but Star Wars, but now you’re more into animal stories, and particularly animals that are mean and get locked up for some reason. I’m trying to forget those requests and steer your toward more gentler requests. One of my favorites was when you wanted the story of how Darth Vader and Boba Fett fell in love.

Mommy and I have been reading you stories from your favorite Costco Disney book for some time now. We both knew it was time to get some new bedtime stories when you told Mommy, “I only take orders from Jafar.”

Late in the spring you were going crazy writing your names, first and last, but lately you haven’t been interested in writing at all….just scribbling. You can count to 30 pretty well, with a little glitch at 15, and you do the same in Spanish. You are aware that there are weekdays and weekends, Thursdays are when Date Night happens, and Friday’s are Show and Tell, but you aren’t able to rattle off the days of the week yet. And worse, you get up earlier on the weekends and shuffle into our bedroom still way before you need to.

You still are loving reading books; I read you Calvin and Hobbes much of the summer and you like Smurf books now. You seem to be ok with any kind of kid book except non-fiction.

When we play hide and seek now, you understand that there is a hider and seeker, but you don’t get the counting to 20 part yet. When we played at the zoo the other day, I asked you what I was counting to and you said, “six and a half minutes.”

You seem to like your new classroom, though I signed a behavior report on Friday acknowledging that you scratched another classmate on the neck when you weren’t sharing….probably one of the toys you took for Friday’s show and tell.

We are able to play games with you now like Candyland, Go Fish, and Sequence, but you cheat by picking the cards you need at all those games, and you delight in telling us that you are winning and we are losing.

Favorite quotes from you.
“You have Boo breath, Daddy.”
“Can I have a courtesy flush, please?”

This dinner conversation just happened in late September when Mommy was gone for work in DC.

Me: What else would you like for dinner, Sweetie?
You: Daddy, can you peel this orange for me?
Me: Sure.
You: Just get it started so I can tear it off.
Me: Ok.

You eats most of the orange, then…

You: Can you take this vagina out?
Me: Do you mean the navel? This is a navel orange.
You: No. I mean the vagina part.
Me: I’m pretty sure you mean the navel. See; it looks like a navel, which is another word for a belly button.
You: No; that’s not what I mean. Don’t argue with me!

 

A recording: Here’s a listen to you from September 2017. You and I are roughhousing while Mommy is making dinner. I chose to save this moment because on the morning of this day you were inconsolable. When you woke up, you yelled for Mommy to come to your room, but Mommy was getting ready in our bathroom. Instead of running into our room like you usually do, you anchored yourself by your bedroom door and wailed for her to come get you. It was quite a standoff: you wailed and cried, Mommy yelled back at you that she was getting ready and you could come visit her down the hall, and I was downstairs finishing walking and giving Boo her breakfast. When Mommy finally got you dressed and downstairs, you continued your whining and whimpering through our breakfast, barely eating and giving me icy stares saying, “Don’t look at me, Daddy,” or scooting down the bench away from me when I sat down next to you in my regular seat to have my cereal. Mommy even started singing her own song, “Oh….today was a lovely morning. I will probably need 3 cups of coffee today……What a treat it was to wake up to this…..”

Where was I???? oh yeah…..I chose this clip because our roughhousing was making you snort and giggle so much that I wanted to capture it to erase my memory of how that day actually started.

You can be sassy, but you are mostly charming, funny, and caring. Every day when I pick you up at daycare, you make a point to stop by your old classroom and say hi to Vicki and Minerva, your old teachers. You hug them

In my life these days:

School is back in session and I’m busy planning lessons and managing the Math team. I’m playing ultimate as often as I can; mostly with my year-round co-ed team Vince who I’ve been with from the beginning. 

This is my 10th anniversary of being in Seattle. Back in August 2007, Grandpa and I made the cross-country Penske Truck trip from Watseka to Kirkland as I relocated from living in the Dominican Republic. 

In the news:

This section is the last part I choose to fill out because it is depressing to me. A few weeks ago, a lone gunman opened fire over a music festival in Las Vegas that killed 58 people and injured hundreds. The man’s motives are still unknown, though it is pretty clear that he did not have any ties to terrorist groups or ultra-religious groups in the US or abroad – he just wanted to create terror and then kill himself. There was a surge of outrage and calls for gun control measures in Congress and on social media, but nothing big has come of it yet except a minor restriction on the bump stock, a device the gunman used that allows a weapon to fire repeatedly without pulling the trigger. 

I read a lot about this massacre, called the “deadliest in US modern times,” though some have pointed out that there were worse massacres of African-Americans and Native Americans in our recent past. I had nightmares about it days after it happened – helpless dreams where I try to speak but can’t or try to run from something but keep slipping. I still run through escape scenarios in my head when I’m at a public gathering or picking you up from daycare. It is horrible, but it is reality, and I feel powerless against the hate and bigotry that seems to overpower the opposite in our world. I’m not looking forward to the day when you ask me and Mommy about events like this, wanting to know why. We won’t have an answer for you. 

The solar eclipse on Monday, August 21st was pretty cool. Several of our friends/colleagues drove down to Oregon to be in the Path of Totality, which for about 2 minutes, was a once-in-a-lifetime experience. 

A summary of a book or podcast I liked:
Born a Crime, by Trevor Noah. Trevor Noah, the Daily Show host who replaced John Stewart, had a unique childhood. Born under apartheid to a black woman and Swiss (white) man in the 1980s, Trevor was “born a crime” because sex between different races was an egregious crime. Trevor recounts zany-scary events of his youth like being thrown from a car, having his poop demons exercised by the women of his village, and going to several different churches with his Mother on Sundays. I recall news about Nelson Mandela, the apartheid abolisher and South African savior after apartheid, but I was not aware how inhuman and premeditated the racial oppression was during the years of apartheid (literally “apart hate”). The book was funny in the way Trevor exposes the glaring hypocracies of the systems in which he grew up, religious, social, and political. Then he adds his own humor. I can’t believe he made it out of the system, can’t believe his Mom’s integrity and perseverance, and I can’t believe what I read about the calculated establishment of a system of racial segregation, oppression and dominance by force that existed in my own lifetime. I suppose I have much to learn about the world out there and need to emerge from my own Seattle echochamber. We discussed this book at school and the librarian offered a perspective by stating, ” Cecil Rhodes is our Hitler.” 

Time to wrap up, Miss Three and Three-Quarters. It is early in the morning and it is time to start the day. Love and hugs to you…

Daddy

The Dog

Good Morning, Chicken Little. 

Let’s start this post by showing you some videos and giving you an end-of-school wrap up. 

The latest 1 Second Everyday Video:
March 2017: play dates, Social Justice Days at my school and Rainier Beach HS, some skiing and showshoeing, Immigrant Rights Day, and some screen time. 

April 2017: biking, NCTM in San Antonio, Passover with the grandparents in DC, the Jacob Lawrence exhibit at the Seattle Art Museum, and Cousin Tessa’s wedding in New Orleans.

 

May 2017: Pittsburgh for Project Zero, U2 Concert, “more carbonite” pretending with the Star Wars figures, a treat at Grumpy D’s Coffee House after you willingly went to swimming lessons, cabin time, solar panel installations, and Guemes Island over Memorial Day.

What you’re doing these days:

You cut a fruit leather wrapper with your scissors and you use a knife now to cut your steakey and chicken. 

The Dog: I carry around a notebook to keep my lists, sketches, and notes for school and life. Sometimes you tear out a page from it and draw on it. For this drawing, you had me open up my notebook to a blank page and then told me to leave you alone. When I came back, this is what you’d drawn…..a dog. This is the first truly representation of something that actually resembles what you said it does, and it blew me away. This dog will be what I remember as your first breakthrough step out of random scribbles into something that is recognizable.

You’re recognizing letters, biking in the scoot, helping cook mixing cracking eggs, and you LOVE the Disney book we got at Costco, which has short stories of dozens of Disney stories. Your favorite, which also happens to be Mommy’s least favorite, is Pinnocchio!

You can put your velcro shoes and socks on all by yourself. 

Here’s an exchange between us that makes it clear how I’ve overloaded you with Star Wars stories:

Nana and Poppop brought you a baby doll in June because you had been asking about it. Then you named it “Kropadoc Kobeshau.”

Cousin Tessa got married in New Orleans in April, and you were invited to be a flower girl! You performed your part without any fuss. We played Hide and Seek and catch with a Beanie babie in the airport in Seattle to keep you amused, but the plane ride was tough; your headphones kept falling off and it was hard for you to sit through any movie or show for twenty minutes. Here are some pics from the wedding.  

Here are some random Crosberry memories I wrote down during the Spring of 2017……

One night when Mommy was the one to take you to swimming, you came home early and were sent to bed without supper because you refused to go in the pool. 

A quote from Mommy: “Do not lick the ground!”

You had some questions about God, and you wanted to know if Grammy Nell is with God now?

We had this conversation on the bike:

You: “If you like pink, then you are a girl. If you like green, you are a boy.”
Me: “Mommy’s favorite color is green”
You, after a long pause: “Then Mommy is a boy.”

“Do you not understand, Daddy?”

“If you come out of an egg you don’t have a belly button.”

In my life these days:
One of my summer goals this year is to tile the backyard and make it more of a patio. I’ve been doing some research and think I can get it done and still have it look good.

I made the Seattle team this year to compete in the Ultimate Frisbee Grandmasters National Championships! It was a big goal of mine and I’m very proud to be on the team.

Mommy and I are going to Banff in the summer while you go to see Gaga and Grandpa in Illinois. 

In the news:

I’m going to pass on this section right now. There are so many controversies that I read in the news that it depresses me. The most depressing one for me lately has been Trump de-pledging the US’s name out of the Paris Climate Accord. 

A summary of a book or podcast I liked:

My Beloved Journey, by Sonya Sotomayor. I had this book on my list after hearing Justice Sotomayor host a Death, Sex, and Money Podcast. She talks about her struggle growing up with an alcoholic father as well as stigmas with diabetes. 

It feels so good to finally wrap up Spring 2017, little one, even thought it is cut short. I’ve been busy living life with you, going to swimming lessons, riding on the bike, reading books, and running around that it has been a long time between posts. Talk to you soon in the Summer 2017 post.

Love, Daddy

Salutations

Good Morning Princess Leia,
Last night Mommy met her girlfriends for “First Tuesday,” to catch up and be together. One friend is turning 46, one is due to have a baby within the month, and one will be trying to get pregnant with her wife within the month. So they have a lot to talk about. You and I stayed at home and played Star Wars, read from your new favorite Disney Book, and fought with each other going to bed.

We snowshoed with the Petersons. They camp at Lake Wenatchee each year, so we trudged to their remote site to see it in the snow.

Even though you come home from daycare with dark circles under your eyes, you experience a wave of energy in the evenings right about the time when Mommy and I feel you should be in bed. Instead, you urge us to “set the timer” for another 5 minutes, read another book, or try to delay the trip upstairs for pajamas, brushing teeth, and the good night song.

What you’re doing these days:

We’ve spent many weekends at the cabin this winter, which matches what Mommy’s dream of the place has been. Of the nine times we’ve been there, only one has been just the four of us. We’ve hosted Gaga and Grandpa, Mark, Melissa, Connor and Ashlan, Denny, Rachel and Eliza, Chris, Maria, and Maisy and Noa, Linda and Hilary, Ray, and Lori, Denton, and Lira. It has been fun to see you play with the kids who have been there, finding fun activities to match what both your ages can do. Everybody has enjoyed the snow. My favorite was the bobsled run the Carney’s made with us on the weekend they visited. It started with a short sled track that lasted no more than a second to an epic 35-second multi turn, take-your-breath-away thrill ride that started way up behind our house and ended in the front yard! Here’s a video of it.

Snow day in February.

You’re enjoying your first season on real skis.

Your crying fits as I leave you off at daycare have lessened as late. For several weeks after the holiday break, you wouldn’t let Mommy go as we left the house, clinging to her, insisting on one last hug and kiss, and pleading with Mommy to wave to us as we left. One day, on the bike, the sendoff went well with no crying, but then when you felt Mommy didn’t wave long enough to you as we left on the bike, you erupted in tears that lasted most of our ride. Then, you were in a low state of emotional fragility that when I left you at daycare, you screamed and cried and stayed in the corner of the room for several minutes. When I went to paren-teacher conferences, your teacher asked me to sign up for another time slot so we could discuss what was happening!  I did get a bit defensive, but they had open hearts about it and I did get some good ideas to try. We had some Moms rooting for us, letting me know that when they saw you in the classroom, you were playing, laughing, and having fun, not even showing signs that you had been inconsolable 5 minutes before. 

March 25: Our final family ski of the season at the Stevens Pass Nordic Center. You impressed us with your skiing stamina.

You’re more into movies now. We’ve shown you Charlotte’s Web, Mary Poppins, and a few more Star Wars clips. You watched the entire Aladdin movie with Noa and Maysie, and Home and Annie with your cousins Nate and Avery. We’ve been signing Chin Up from Charlotte’s Web and I Want it Now, the song Veruca Salt sings in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. “Salutations,” is how Charlotte introduces herself to Wilbur the pig. 

I posted a gratitude comment on facebook for the student-athletes and teachers I worked with at Millikin University Track and Field. We hosted some big track meets. This towel was swag from the D3 Outdoor Nationals meet in 2001.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my life these days:

I’m working through the Spanish lessons in Rosetta Stone. The educational units help me learn new aspects of the language, practice speaking and reading, and help me to be more comfortable speaking with the teachers at your daycare. It is no immersion by any means, just a few minutes each day, but it is something. I’m hoping to be done with the course by the time we vacation in Costa Rica in June.

I worked hard to deliver another interesting track on Gentrification at my school’s 5th Annual Social Justice Day. This year I worked with Emma and Moses; we took 15 students to the now-gentrifying Central District of Seattle. Read about that here.

Following the Seattle City Council’s decision, I’ve decided to divest from Wells Fargo Bank because they are a major lender in the Dakota Access Pipeline. I felt badly that I did my banking with Wells Fargo, who is a major lender of the project, and who also has been under scrutiny in recent months for allegedly coercing clients into opening bogus accounts for its own financial gain. 

In the next month I’ll be speaking at two conferences on Math and Social Justice topics. NCTM meets in San Antonio on April 5-8. There I’m presenting Engaging All Students: Math in Art, Technology, and History on my own as well as co-presenting Calculated Change: Social Justice in the Mathematics Classroom. I’m pumped to have this opportunity, as well as work at a school that helps me fund the trips. One of my main efforts in the last two years has been to insert more justice/equality oriented topics and skills for students in my classes. Math is not a neutral subject for me; it shouldn’t be taught apart from the real world. So I believe Math teachers should equip students with the tools to understand and speak intelligently about the complexities of the world. 

I’m also trying out to represent the Seattle Grandmasters Ultimate Frisbee team this summer at the National Championships. Tryouts have been happening the last few weeks. I find out if I make the team in mid-April. 

In the news:

March Madness 2017 has started. After todays games, the final four will be set. . I picked Duke to win it all in my CBS online bracket, but they have already been beat. The Gonzaga Bulldogs earned a spot int he Final Four last night with a win over Xavier. This is Gonzaga’s first trip to the D1 Final Four. 

The Affordable Care Act survived an attack from the trump administration last week when the scheduled vote was postponed due to lack of support for overturning the ACA. 

There have been many protests throughout the country lately: for US immigrants, education, and in opposition of executive orders and Trump nominations. Your daycare participated in one on Dia de los Immagrantes. Though I fully support the concern of immigrants, muslims, and minorities who have been the subject to targeted action, I’m not convinced you should be marching, little 3 year old. Nevertheless, Mommy and I kept you in daycare on the day your teachers decided to have a “little march” around the block.  

A summary of a book or podcast I liked:

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury. I remember reading this book in high school, as well as seeing the movie many years ago, so I wanted to read it again. It was originally published in 1950, but what was eery for me was that many of the scientific elements of the novel could still work as futuristic in 2017. The book was originally released as separate stories that Bradbury eventually loosely stitched together to sell as a single novel. I was fascinated by the descriptions of Mars and the repeated attempts at colonization of the planet, but there wasn’t much of a central character or theme to keep me engaged and vested through the book. In the end, the part I remember seeing from the movie was over in one of the first chapters, then it got too scattered for me. 

She’s Not There by Jennifer Finney Boylan. The author grew up as Jim Boylan, but from as long as he could remember knew that he did not belong in his body, and longed to be a girl. Jim suffered through adolescence and adulthood, hiding his desire, crossdressing, and feelings from everyone in his life. He was married, had two children, and was a beloved professor at Colby College for several decades before he got the courage to start transitioning into a woman. I had never read anything from a trans perspective, so this was enlightening to me. I felt uncomfortable with the author as she described uncomfortable encounter after another with people when she wasn’t quite herself. I especially enjoyed hearing how Jenny’s immediate family dealt with her change. This book is the first best seller written by a trans person. 

That’s a wrap, little one. It feels good to finish a post. Hugs to you and happy spring,

Love, Daddy

 

 

 

“Alexa, Play Feeling in My Body.”

Seasons Greetings, Sweet Pea,

It is the year 2017. Much has changed since the last check-in. You are MUCH better at puzzles now, thankfully. There was a time when you would take a piece and rotate it through all the options, but still not place it successfully. It would result in you throwing the piece down and grunting in disgust. That doesn’t happen as much any more. Now, when I pick you up at school, you are occasionally putting a puzzle together with a friend.

You and your cousins at Christmas in Illinois.

The YEAR 2016 in 1 second a day is complete. I’m proud that I’ve inspired a few more recruits to the 1Second habit, a few students and a teacher-friend. The 1 Second Everyday app has climbed in popularity and is now in the top ten of several app categories as of December 2016. Next month, February 2017, will mark the start of the fourth year of capturing a second every day of my life. I remember when I used to use my old Canon power shot digital camera and iMovie to assemble the videos, slim them to 1 second, and save them before the video was ready. Thank you Cesar Kuriyama for pushing through your idea and developing a tool for everyone to use.

What you’re doing these days….
Your drawing habits have evolved a bit. You are now using a collection of colors to cover the entire page. You produce one of these about once a day – which is great to send to friends and loved ones in Thank-You notes.

As we were leaving Costco after a shopping trip, we pushed our cart past an elderly man and his wife. We all made eye contact and smiled, then you asked the lady, who was missing many teeth, “Why you lose your tooth?” She took it humorously, yet didn’t have a quick comeback for you except to show you more of the teeth that she did have.

You are going through a BIG Mommy phase right now. You need a hug and kiss every morning from Mommy before you and I leave, and I’m not favored at all to dress you, bathe you, tuck you in, or serve you in any way unless I’m the only one around. You have cried every morning for the last three weeks when I leave you off at daycare, and even though your tears and fears last for a short time, it hasn’t been fun to leave you sobbing and standing in the corner. Mommy and I are hoping this is just a phase, but it is lasting a long time.

 

You ask questions about inanimate objects and what they say. For example, “What does the rain say when it can’t get in the car?” “What does the lollipop say when I bite it?” “What does the muffin say when it goes in the toaster?”

One bike ride home you started to moan and cry. We got home and you wanted to cuddle with me, which never happens. Then you Vomited all over me and yourself. You started to sob and said, “I’m not having a good day.”

Mommy and I often use the timer with you….for bed, before we leave the park, but mainly before bed. It used to work pretty well; you’d hear the timer and then shoot up to bed, but now that you’re older and smarter, you ask to set the timer again and again. In January, Mommy and I started a “reward chart,” that keeps track of the behaviors we’d like you to demonstrate. 1. Go to bed without fighting, 2 Eat real food and eat what I ask for, 3. Stay in bed until my light is yellow, 4. not whine or yell, and 5. Be nice to people. If you accumulate 25 happy faces (out of 35 possible), you get a reward that you choose at the start of the week. The first week it was ice cream, and you earned it! ¬†The last few weeks they’ve been videos, which you’ve earned as well. The categories that give you and us the most trouble have been eating and going to bed without fighting. You’ve dropped your weekend naps, for the most part, much to our chagrin, and that sometimes can mean a hangry child around late afternoon/evening.

 

This winter, we’ve been nordic skiing nearly every weekend, and you’ve been along on every ride. Sometimes you ride in the Chariot, other times you put on your skis and ski under your own power. You seem to like both ways, which thrills me and Mommy.

You want to hear stories……The Three Little Pigs, Goldilocks, and now Star Wars. On drives to the cabin, Mommy and I take turns entertaining you with our made up stories or playing songs from The Lion King, Mary Poppins, or Neil Diamond’s “Coming to America.”

Here’s our entry to The Peabody Family Newsletter 2016.

Crosby questions:

Why does Gargamel hate smurfs? How do you die? Will Gaga die? How do you juggle? What does the mango say when I eat the pit? Can we set the timer, Daddy?

We got an Amazon Dot, which helps us keep our shopping list, answer easy questions about the weather or business hours, and can play our music. Mommy and I may say, “Alexa, what are the conditions at Stevens Pass?” and she’ll tell us about Stevens Pass. ¬† But now you’ve entered the game, too, yelling, “Alexa, put candy canes on the shopping list,” to which Mommy and I shout back, “Alexa, cancel the candy canes.” My favorite command of yours is when you told Alexa to play, “Feeling in My Body by Justin Bieber-lake.” ¬†That’s your favorite song, “Can’t Stop the Feeling,” but it is by Justin Timberlake, not Justin Bieber. Alexa said, “I could not understand your request. ”

Here’s a Mommy quote I heard last weekend: “There’s a little too much talking happening; now let’s see how quiet we can be.”

In my life right now…
This semester, I taught a Global Online Academy (GOA) course called “Power: Redressing Inequity Through Data.” I had 5 students, only one of which was in my time zone. I organized a 15-week experience where we examined philosophies of power, ways power is used, and inequities that exist in areas such as income, water, human trafficking, and gender and LGBT issues. We found data that supports the inequality claim that we made, and then tried to find ways to redress the inequalities. I loved the course, loved the online aspect of it, and am hoping to teach it again. I felt so fortunate that the opportunity was given to me. One of the fun things about it was making videos; since my students and I would never meet face to face, the needed to still see me. Here’s one I did with our school librarian, Anne.

New Years Resolutions used to bother me; I used to say, “If you want to change something, do it now, not wait ’till the new year.” But now I don’t feel that way. That is something I used to say that when I had tons of time, only had to think about myself and my own goals, and wrote more often than I do now. Lately, the new year inspires me to make some new changes.

The changes are small, but I believe they make a difference. For example, at the start of 2016 (1 year ago) I resolved to not consume any cola and have just 1 sweet serving a day. I felt I ate too much sugar as it was, and pop/soda/cola just was extra unhealthiness I could avoid. So I’ve gone without drinking cola for a year now and have kept to my “1 sweet” policy nearly every day, except for a few days out of the year when I have a second piece of cakey.

For this year, I’d like to cut down my consumption of red meat….to next to nothing. I’ve known that red meat consumption isn’t necessary for humans to be healthy. In fact, it is probably healthier to NOT eat meat at all, but I’m not there yet. This resolution came to me last week after I watched Before the Flood¬†at an all-school assembly. Watching this documentary on climate change and our species’ contribution to it, I thought that cutting out meat may be a small contribution I can make this year to help heal the Earth. We shall see how it goes. I have a feeling it won’t be that difficult and I might even feel better inside and outside.

The Donald Trump presidency has begun, which has prompted another resolution for me. I was extremely disappointed to have Trump represent the U.S. as its leader, so I’ve resolved to become a little more involved politically. I don’t have any measurable goals as yet to keep, but I have started to follow my Washington senators (Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell) and representative (Pramila Jayapal, Washington state’s 7th district) on twitter to be aware of what’s happening politically. I’ve also kept working on inserting a social justice into my math classes, which has been the front-and-center teacher goal at my school. These are small steps, but in time I’ll have the guts to take more. I was very disappointed when the potential for the first woman president (Hilary Clinton) faded and Trump won the Electoral College vote.

A summary of a book or podcast that Inspired me:  Outcasts United by Warren St. John.

If you’re looking for inspirational reading, I suggest you check out “Outcasts United” by Warren St. John. The story is about Luma, a Jordanian woman who chose to defy her family’s wishes and move to the US to live and start a soccer team in a small town outside Atlanta, GA. Reading it reminded me that building relationships, not walls, will help the world we all share. The part that was the “kicker,” for me……all the players are refugees.

You’re still sleeping upstairs, little one, and Mommy has just returned with Boo on a clear winter morning run. Thanks for letting me get this post finished. I love you so much and can’t wait to hear what you have to say today.

Love, Daddy

 

I’m glad you’re here, I’m glad you’re home. Will you scratch my bum?”

Dear Little Berry,

One of the most adorable, and frustrating, sounds Mommy and I hear from you these days is the tiny thud, shuffle shuffle, click of a door opening, and scrape scrape of tiny feet as you get out of your bed and make your way into our room. You do this at all hours of the night, but lately it has seemed to be around 3:30-4:00 am, when it is too early to wake up but too late to go back to sleep. You typically just want to crawl into bed with us, but you thrash and kick Mommy so much that she convinces you to go back to your bed to squeeze out a few more minutes of snoozing.

On the other hand, you have been known to thud, shuffle shuffle, then click open the door and yell at us from your doorway, questions like, “Dad….can we ride the bike tomorrow?’

But on the night based on the title of this post, Mommy had a girls night from 8-10, and just when she arrived home, you woke up and yelled for her. When she went upstairs to check on you in bed, you told her, “I’m glad you’re here. I’m glad you came. Will you scratch my bum?”

In mid-August we camped in Cape Disappointment for the second year in a row. This year, however, we convinced Mark, Melissa, and your cousins Connor and Ashlan to join us. We enjoyed some quality beach and surf time, meals inside the canopy, a visit to the Northwest Kite Festival in Long Beach, and swinging in the hammock.

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You are still into the music from Frozen, but you’ve added some pop music to your playlist. When we’re in the car, you often request¬†“Shut Up and Dance,” and “Feeling in My Body.” I love them to and we often sing along to them.

These four shots below are from our trip back to Illinois in September. I was inducted into the Watseka High School Athletic Hall of Fame, so you and I flew back so I could be in the ceremony. It was a great honor. My track coach/Math teacher Joe Sutfin nominated me because the things I’ve done athletically, in high school and after, embody the qualities the award calls for in it’s description. It was a thrill to make a trip home so you could spend some bonus time with your grandparents, great grandparent, and cousins.

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You are about to be three years old, so Mommy and I are trying to raise you to have the qualities and attitudes that a three year old should have – patience when working on puzzles, sitting and eating respectfully during meals, expressing your emotions verbally and not hitting or shrieking, and following instructions when Mommy and I give them to you.

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I’m fine with you carrying the poop bag – just don’t swing it around.

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You’re a big fan of your Mommy.

What you’re doing these days:

You only wear dresses, you love squishy bunnies and squishy fruit, like put my vitamins in the weekly container and give them to me in the morning. You like to “roughhouse” after dinner and you never tire of going to the library, checking out books, and reading them over and over.

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One of my goals this summer was to complete another spring triathlon. I did the Lake Stevens on a weekend just after school started.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On a day when I was picking you up from daycare, I asked you how your day was, to which you replied, “Good….nobody hit me and nobody bit me.”

Love, Daddy

Summer 2016, Part Two – “Troll your motions, Daddy.”

Buenos Dias, Princesa,

This morning (Friday Aug 12th) you woke up normally after a good night’s sleep, but on our bike ride to daycare, you kept telling me that you didn’t feel well. I turned the bike around at the top of Phinney Ridge and we went to the pediatrician’s office, which admits walk-ins in the morning. The nurse took your temperature (normal), then the doctor listened to your your breathing and heart, and looked in your eyes, ears, and nose. Your eyes were red and you were itching them, so he decided it was either an allergy or some virus. We got back on the bike, pedaled up to the ridge, bought some Claritin, had you take a 1/2 pill, then took you to daycare.

Two hours later, Mommy got a call from daycare letting her know that you weren’t having a good time at all. I picked you up later…you were crying and rubbing your eyes. We biked home with you rubbing your eyes, but still asking, “Is this a very steep hill,” “Daddy, why you stand up,” “Daddy, are you schvitsy,” and “What he eating?” (ice cream…you only ask that question when you know the answer and you want what they’re having) So now we’re back home and you have been sleeping for almost 3 hours. I expect you’ll wake up soon and be pretty hungry.

When we returned from Smugger’s Notch this summer, my friend since Kindergarten, Chad Cluver, and his wife, Sherry, came to visit. Chad and I have been trying to get some of our high school buddies together for a vacation, but it couldn’t be done this year, so Chad and Sherry instead left their kids in IL (to stay with grandparents) to visit us. With the cooperative summer weather, I sponsored a great several day tour…….Pike’s Place Market, a Seattle Underground Tour, a tour of Starbuck’s Corporate office (thank you cousin-in-law Melissa Lemmon Peabody), a¬†cuban sandwiches¬†picnic at Golden Gardens, and even a Thursday night double-date night yoga class and pizza before they flew back home. It was great hanging out with Cluve; our lives got busy after college and we hadn’t seen each other very often. I’m hoping we can make this a summer tradition and get the rest of the WCHS guys involved.

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One of the first toilets from the inventor Thomas Crapper – Seattle Underground Tour.

After the Cluver visit, I went to Bainbridge Island for a training Global Online Academy training. I’ll be teaching an online course for GOA in the fall and needed to learn how to make videos, load content, and lead students through a semester-long online course. My course is called “Power: Redressing Inequity Through Data.” ¬†I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to teach an online course, especially one so cool as this Power one.

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Aunt Linda took us stand up paddleboarding at Matthews Beach.

For the first weekend in August, we rented a VRBO in the Key Peninsula with Mommy’s good girlfriends, their spouses, and kids. Linda and Hilary brought their Aqua Lounge, two standup paddleboards, and Tyler brought the canoe he assembled himself, so we had several water options. The water was quite cold, but we had fun on the beach in the sand, throwing the ball for Emma and Clementine to fetch, and paddling or lounging around. In honor of the Rio Olympics that were starting up, Mommy had the idea to have our own olympics with rings and juggling balls (see the first 3-6 seconds of the 1 Second Everyday video below)

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Here’s our August 1 Second Everyday video….lots of friends and family in this one.

We’ve had a lot of adventures this summer, but the one I think about the most is our weekday routine of biking together together on the Yuba. I love getting you ready in the morning with several layers of coats and Space Needle socks on your hands. I love how you say, “Click it or ticket,” when we fasten your helmet and seat straps. I feel we’ve contributed, even in a small way, to saving fuel, and being active by biking instead of driving….especially since the weather has been beautiful. It is so fun to bike around Greenlake with you because we can stop by the wading pool, go to the library, or watch people dive off the boards at the West Beach.

You have had many quotes this summer that made me and Mommy chuckle. Here are some….

“Troll your motions, Daddy”

“Don’t bother me. I’m coloring.”

“I was off picking berries, Dad.”

Mommy: “Crosby, help Daddy clean up.”
Crosby: “I’m helping myself.”

Love,

Daddy

Summer 2016 Part 1 – Smuggs & Mano Mysterioso

Happy Summer, Golden Child,

This Summer post #1 will cover the end of school up to August 1st of the great summer of 2016. This is the time when I truly value being a teacher; I have forgotten about work completely; I’ve forgotten the stress of a job, I have a ton of time to pursue what I want, I my smile wrinkles seem to fade a little…..stress is less for me in the summer. I do need to be aware that Mommy, on the other hand, does not have the same easy schedule I have, so I try to have the dishes put away when she gets home for the day.

Nana and Poppop came at the end of June this year. On the day they arrived, I took them to La Escuelita to pick you up after school and see where you spend most of your days. They were very impressed it, and you added to the excitement by leaping and screaming when you saw them (see :22 of the June 2016 video). All of your classmates caught on and followed like wild monkeys. I sure don’t get that reaction when I pick you up in the afternoon.

During Nana and Poppop’s visit, you sponsored several tea parties, we visited the zoo and the Ballard Locks, and you and Nana worked together to make a cakey. You are becoming more interested in seeing how things operate around the kitchen, including stirring, selecting cups and utensils, and cleaning the chocolate-batter bowl.

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July was a month packed with water, travel, and family time. Over the 4th, we spent time on Whidbey Island where you saw your Seattle cousins. You love spending time with your cousins, and Mommy and I love it too because it gives us a little break from each other during the daily tasks of reading (Avery read a Curious George book to you all before bed), getting dressed in the morning (Avery and Ashlan selected your clothes and helped you get dressed (a tough task for us EVERY morning), and tuck-in time (Ashlan is zipping you up). Mommy and I were hoping for a successful slumber party, your first one, but you kept talking even when the lights were out. Avery finally asked that we move you to our room because you were keeping them up. We’ll try again soon.

On Monday the 4th, we had a beach fire and tried to enjoy the fireworks, but you were frightened by the booms so you went inside. I think you were pretty tired, since it doesn’t get dark until after 9pm, and when you went to bed, you snoozed all through the booms and pops without a peep.

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1 Second Everyday June 2016

Here are some Crosby quotes I’ve snagged from you in the last few months.

“Dad, Can we ride the bike tomorrow?” (you like to ask this repeatedly when you should be in bed)

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“I want mine creamier!’ (I can’t remember what this was)

“Don’t touch me: go back to your seat.” ¬†(in a Vermont restaurant, as you sit with your cousins)

“Do you want to smell my feet?” (I’m afraid I taught you to repeat this one)

Last week, when you were pretending to serve Mommy some ice cream, she asked you what flavor it was, and you said, “Glucosamine.” You’ve been interested in the vitamins I take and what the names of them are. Now, serving me my 3 vitamins is part of our morning ritual. You even asked Nichole’s husband Matthew to show you his vitamins when we were at their house for a cookout.

You’ve also started to cook and serve “Toot Soup” to us when you’re in your kitchen. I am respectful and accept the cup, but I don’t smell or drink it.

Mano Mysterioso (my right hand) ¬†is a new character I’ve created that appears when we are playing around. Mano does not listen very well, and likes to tickle you when he see’s you. He can sometimes be kept in check by being fed tasty foods, but he prefers Tender Juicy Baby Bellies.

The big event this summer was the Epic Peabody Vermont Adventure – to celebrate Gaga and Grandpa’s 50th wedding anniversary – one year early. The destination where The Chuck Peabody family’s family met was Smuggler’s Notch Resort in the Green Mountains near Stowe, Vermont. It was a fun time to spend long days with your Indiana cousins outside in a setting that had many options. The younger ones spent a lot of time in the pool (in between naps and meals) while the grownups swam, hiked, mountain biked, ziplined, toured on segways, did yoga on a standup paddleboard, toured the Ben and Jerry’s factory, and organized theirown¬†sessions around your naps!

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The Vermont highlights for me were

  1. Having you spending lots of time with your Indiana cousins.
  2. Seeing Grandpa Chuck own the mountain bike teeter-totter and downhill course.
  3. Doing the zipline tour with Uncle Andy, Aunt Kara, and Kali
  4. Being able to spend time with my family other than during the hectic holidays.
  5. Visiting Boston before and after our trip and seeing Mommy’s college campus and college friends.

Here is the 1 Second Video for July, which includes some fun shots from our families at Smuggs.

Now we are back home and the summer is about to close. You are back at La Escuelita and about to begin transition with your classmates to new classrooms, teachers, and friends. I need to keep working on my online course (through Global Online Academy) and finish some summer goals before I report back to school. Out in the world these last few weeks, I’m sad to report that there have been several more shootings in our nation, one of which was a retaliatory targeting of police officers in Dallas. Just this weekend, a 19-year used a rifle to shoot three teenagers at a house party in Mukilteo, WA. The new game Pokemon Go is the hot app this summer, where players use their phones’ GPS to virtually catch characters that exist in public places. You and I had to evade some kids playing Pokemon Go on our bike last week on the Greenlake trail because they weren’t looking where they were going and walked right onto the bike path. The 2016 election drama continues….Donald J. Trump is the hesitantly-endorsed-nominee for the republican party, and Hilary Clinton is the first female nominee for president ever. There was a failed military coup in Turkey, McDonalds is now pledging to serve chicken nuggets from chicken raised without antibiotics, and the Rio olympics begin on Friday (without the Russian track and field team, nearly the entire Russian olympic team due to a doping scandal).

It is so fun being with you and watching pretend, ask questions, and experience more of the world every day, little Berry. Mommy and I want you to be a happy, confident, and kid human who will grow up to make the world happier and kinder, too. Love, Mano Mysterioso

Spring 2016

Good Morning, Little Pumpkin!

Today is my Last Day of school! The students are all gone; we just have programming, a department meeting, and the end of year party, so it is low-stress. Tomorrow I have no teacher duties at all, so I’m now gazing out into the best part of the work cycle…the start of the summer.

Yesterday, I took you to Mt. Si, a popular hike in North Bend, WA. Soha, an exchange student from Lebanon, wanted to “go on a hike,” so she recruited several teachers and students to make an excursion out of her last adventure before she returned home today. Though we didn’t make it to the summit, both you and I had fun. The trail was too rocky, bumpy, and steep for a 2.5 year old, so you rode in the backpack, except for a small stretch coming down when you held my hand.

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What’s happening these days?

The commercial space agency Space X successfully landed the solid rocket booster on the Earth. Up until now, rockets sloughed off the boosters, letting them fall to earth, disintegrating upon reentry or splashing into the ocean, making the flights very expensive. With this new idea, the booster can be reused.

Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump have now clinched their parties nominations for the 2016 election. President Obama’s oldest child, Malia, graduated high school and will be attending Harvard after taking a gap year. The musician/actor Prince died in his home in Minneapolis, MN a few weeks ago, in an overdose from too much pain killers. The NBA’s Golden State Warriors set a record for the most number of wins in a season, eclipsing the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bull’s 1995 (I think) record. Sadly, there was another mass shooting two days ago in Orlando, when a gunman opened fire in a gay-nightclub, killing 50. This is the deadliest attack since September 11th. The gunman had ties to ISIS and obtained the gun legally just several days before he used it to kill.

Spring Break this year was¬†epic. I had TWO WEEKS to pack in fun, sun, and no school! I went camping and hiking with Mateo around Wenatchee/Leavenworth, then you, me, and Mommy flew to California to visit Auntie Ka in Sonoma County for three days. Then we visited Drew Roberts, my former Millikin student-athlete, stayed with Dave and Vivian in Berkeley, and met Mommy’s friend Carol in the Muir Woods for a hike and lunch in Sausalito.

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Here’s our April 1 Second Everyday video.

Quotes from you lately.

“You’re a good maker, Daddy.”

“None for you. Sorry, Daddy.”

“I like you but I don’t like my Daddy.”

Me: “Would you like some water?”
You: “No. I don’t need to hydrate.”

Sarcastically “I don’t need two forks!”

“Hey! Privacy!” (when you’re on the potty)

“Why you give me the stink eye, Mommy?”

Your most elaborate quote I’ve heard so far: “C’mon, Boo. I’m going to to take you on a walk. Daddy, you stay here with Mommy and don’t cry.”

Let’s end this post with a view of the May 1 Second Everyday video. You’ll see several shots of our new bike, the Yuba Mondo bike. More on that in the next post.

Love, Daddy

 

Knock Knock….MOO!

Happy Spring, Sweet Pickle.

Today you had your last gymnastics lesson. Like most sessions, you only participated in the jumping parts (trampoline, foam pit) and refused to do the obstacle course part. Mommy and I decided to enroll you in swimming lessons now instead of another round of gymnastics.

We also drove up to the mountains later and had a final cross-country ski day. You were a great sport, as always, when you’re in the Chariot, probably because we provide you with goldfish crackers, milk, and copious snacks to keep you quiet and happy.

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It is staggering how quickly you are growing into a little girl. Our conversations now involve lots of “Why,” but you are also contributing to the exchange with your own one-liners. Here’s you singing your own version of Ba Ba Black Sheep with Mommy:

Nana and PopPop visited last week. They hung out with you on Friday. You and Nana baked a chocolate cake. Then, over the weekend, we went to the Dog Show and Pacific Science Center. You delighted and exhausted them with your energy.

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I’ve collected some of the conversations we have with you, some of which are 100% gibberish, others are very witty and observant. One of our favorites is the only joke you know so far. It is supposed to go
Me: “Knock Knock?”
You: “Who’s There?”
Me: “Interrupting Cow”
You: “Interrupting Cow Wh….” (then, the jokester interrupts) “MOOOOOOO!”

but you don’t really get the humor in it yet, so you just say, “Knock Knock MOOO!” without letting anyone bid with you for the joke. It’s fun.

Here’s another conversation you and I had after school eating a snack at the table with Clementine under the table:
You: “You have hair here, Dada?” (Looking at my facial hair)
Me: “I do have hair here.” (stroking my beard)
You: “You no have hair here, Dada.” (Touching the top of my head)
Me: “You’re right, I don’t have hair here.”
You: Boo have hair?
Me: “I don’t know….let’s look.” (we both look under the table, then you look back at me with wide eyes)
You: “No…Boo have lots of hair.”

Other one-liners from you lately:

“I want to go up the stairs by myself, Daddy.”

“Can I eat your crust, Daddy?”

“Wanna come play with me now, Mommy?”

“Thank you for sharing with me, Mommy.”

“I dropped my stick in the purple flowers.” (this one was a surprise…an 8-word sentence!)

Here’s a morning exchange I overheard you and Mommy have while getting ready for work and school.
Mommy: “What do you want to wear today, little girl?”
You: “Jammies!”
Mommy: “How about no?”
You: (emphatically yelling) “How about YES!?”
This about sums up your morning reluctance to dress and get ready. It is probably Mommy’s least favorable time with you. It isn’t that you dislike mornings (you often wake up singing your ABCs), you just really enjoy wearning your pajamas.

Here’s more footage of our lives in short clips…..the 1 Second Everyday video for March.

Love, Daddy