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Month: October 2014

the end of soccer

the end of soccer

It really was just a few months ago in which the boys participated in a soccer camp and discovered, to their chagrin, that they really weren’t all that good.

They have been working (and playing) diligently since then. In addition to our family soccer time, Oliver plays with a group from school one day a week, and Simon has had a more focused and intense soccer skills development program here in Brooklyn for the past 8 weeks. But last week was the last week, at least until spring.

What I won’t miss is the Friday frenzy of me getting to the school with all his soccer stuff, riding all the kids back to Brooklyn and down to the park where Simon changes into his soccer clothes, then I wrestle on his shin-guards, socks, and cleats before sending him off to play for an hour while I catch my breath. 

What I will miss is seeing him out there on the field, looking competent and confident. He takes it pretty seriously, so although he is enjoying himself, he’s also pretty critical of himself and trying to figure out how he can improve and what he can do better.

His last day was scrimmage day. Instead of doing drills, they played scrimmage games the whole time. He looked like he was having a good time, but when it was over he was a little down. I couldn’t get him to tell me about it for a while, but later that night when Micah and I were talking about how well he did and how much he improved he told us that his team had lost all of the scrimmage games, and that why he was sad. But he also said that he felt good about how he played, and that he did his best.

This was such a huge step forward for him in learning to handle disappointment. That transformation is even more gratifying than seeing him handle a ball with skill and ease.

he’s 5! he’s 5! he’s a big kid now, he’s 5!

he’s 5! he’s 5! he’s a big kid now, he’s 5!

On the day before Oliver’s birthday (which is to say, on Micah’s birthday), the temperature dropped into the 40s. Micah pulled out the winter clothes to be sure the boys were outfitted properly for the commute to school. Among the options were a pair of 5T pants, which he offered to Oliver. Oliver’s response? “No. Tomorrow.”

By which he meant: “I cannot wear those 5T pants because they are for a 5-year-old and I am not yet 5. I can wear them tomorrow, if you wish.”

That’s my boy! Fearless adventurer, dashing young gentleman, comedian extraordinaire, and all around great guy.

At 5, Oliver flatly refuses to play with boys.

He has an excellent rapport with a couple of girls in his class.

He is a really good reader and has made a lot of progress on his handwriting in two short months.

His favorite colors are yellow and purple.

Sometimes he draws his pictures and colors them in the same color so that you cannot see what he has drawn.

He has no patience for lines or keeping the colors within them.

He has a talent for cleverly mashing words together (he must be absorbing our culture’s love of the portmanteau).

He would much rather tell a joke than read a book.

He is the favorite playmate of both his older brother and his younger sister.

He still claims to not eat green things, but he still will eat green things if strongly encouraged.

He has been thrilled to discover that every week as he walks into sacrament meeting, he is handed a paper to fold into an airplane.

He makes the best cheesy face ever.

He is quite a treat to have around. Obviously.

micah is my favorite and my best

micah is my favorite and my best

And he recently had a birthday.

The celebratory activities included:

Crab leg dinner and ice cream dessert at a couple of new joints in our neighborhood—just me and him.

Tasty tacos with me and Elsa on a break from work.

Lemon bars with birthday candles, a birthday song, and gift opening.

And listening in on a conversation between Ira Glass and Maira Kalman about the importance of objects.

He says his favorite part was going out with me. And that is why he is my favorite and my best.

Happy Birthday, Love. You’re the creamiest.

how about them apples

how about them apples

Sixty-six. That’s how many apples we picked. It was cold and wet, though we missed the rain.

It took a few tries to convince Elsa that the apples that were still on the tree were better than the ones on ground, but she got it. It helped that Micah was willing to be the ladder so she could reach the best apples.

And once Elsa had a turn on the “dadder,” her brothers wanted a try, too.
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Of course, as amazing as it is too see where apples really come from, and as fun as it is to figure out what we’re going to do with the dozens of apples we have boxed up on the balcony, it’s really the tradition of eating an entire pie straight from the plate for lunch that gets us out to a farm in the cold and wet.

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It’s the little things.

first weekend in October

first weekend in October

Same old same old first-weekend-in-October for us:

We run a race, we celebrate a birthday, we watch General Conference, we have a waffle party, we watch more conference, we high-five and crash on the couch.

Or something like that.

But then again, not same old same old.

Miles for Midwives 5K was Saturday morning—when it was pouring. We got a little wet. We ran through puddles as deep as our calves. But we still did just fine. Micah came in 4th at 20:10 and I ran a 20:55 for 6th place overall, 1st woman. I would like to point out that lots of people didn’t show because of the rain, so the competition was not as stiff as it sometimes is. Still, it was nice that I could defend my “title.” Haha.

And then we went back home with a family we’ve been meaning to get together with for over a year. They have kids that match up pretty nicely in age and gender with ours and we wanted to see if we it might be destiny. Conclusion: yes. We can be friends for sure.

Having another family over was great because it meant that we had plenty of other mouths to help us out with Abby’s 4-layer birthday cake. And what a cake it was! One of my better efforts, which was a little surprising because it had not a bit of butter. So that was nice.

Also nice: all the kids playing in the bedroom so we adults could listen to conference. Even better, it worked out two days in a row. We figured if we’re going to party, we might as well party hard, so we invited a bunch of other families over for waffles before conference on Sunday. Our apartment was pretty packed until just before the session started, and then just a couple of families stayed. Once again, all the kids played nicely while we listened. Or, more accurately, while we waited for chaos to erupt in the bedroom. It never did. It took us a while to pick our jaws off the floor . . . .

And that was that.  A great weekend. A great weekend that kicks off the season of what we hope is several months of great weekends as we celebrate birthdays and holidays and take advantage of the beautiful fall weather.