Tuesday, May 29, 2012


We've been trying to introduce Nora to Great Aunt Duronda (aka Nana) for a while now, but our trip kept getting delayed due to illnesses, school, work and the occassional wildfire. By the time we finally bought our tickets to Austin last fall, Duronda had sold her house and moved to Florida (though as she keeps reminding us, she's now much closer to Disneyworld).

But the stars finally alligned and Aunt Janis and Aunt Duraonda (along with Cousin Carrie and Aunt Katherine and Uncle L) gathered in Silver Spring to celebrate Katherine's birthday and life in general this past week. Museums were visited. Shopping was done. Drinks were imbibed. And Nora finally met Nana (which was well worth the wait).

Friday, May 25, 2012

Ring of Fire

Monday, May 21, 2012

Little Running Man

The Capitol Hill Classic has been the main fundraising event for Owen's school for 33 years and involves a 10k, a 3k and a Fun Run. So when they started sending home flyers in Owen's folder, we asked if he wanted to participate. Owen initially said, "no" since he didn't think he would be the fastest runner and didn't want to lose, but eventually we convinced him to do the "Fun Run" with his friends and he had a blast. So much so that after he got his medal and learned his friend Adam had done the 3k and the Fun Run, he announced that next year he and I would run the 3k together. Which means I should probably start training now...

Monday, May 14, 2012

The Big Day


Mother's day is always a big day, but this year called for some extra celebration of mothers in our family since it was also Elaine's birthday and my Mom's birthday.  That's a lot of reasons to celebrate, and a lot to live up to.  Last time Mother's Day fell on the 13th was a complete disaster, Owen was sick the day before, I caught whatever he had and ended up in the hospital on the big day, Elaine fell victim to the sickness trying to care for me and Owen, and then to top it all off Mom Mom caught our bug watching Owen while Elaine and I were recuperating.

Thankfully the big day went much more smoothly this year.  Grandpa Don and I waited a bit too long to get brunch reservations, but that just gave us the opportunity to make our own delicious meal.  I spent the weekend baking homemade brioche, poached eggs, and coffee cake from the Voltaggio brother's cookbook; Don brought fruit salad, mimosas and birthday cake; and we all had a lovely celebration of two beautiful and amazing mothers.

(click here for the pictures)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Field Trippin'

As the end of the school year approaches, Peabody is in a mad rush to get all their field trips in (the trip to Tudor Place a few weeks ago, this trip to the National Arboretum, next week's trip to the National Aquarium, the following week's trip to the Postal Museum...) and we're in a frenzy to fulfil our suggested parental volunteer commitments. Hence Allen and my sudden interest in chaperoning a bunch of kindergartners as they visit historical and educational points of interest in the greater Washington area, while they discuss nijas, decide who gets to hold whose hand, trade "Why did the..." jokes, compare and contrast lunches and various classmates progress in consuming them, and at least in this instance, figure out how may steps aways from dirt are some of their favorite foods.

After a series of rain-filled days, it was a surprisingly sunny (albeit windy) day at the Arboretum as I joined Ms. Doresey's class to taste spearamint and strawberries, go on a nature walk through Fern Valley where we stopped, spied with our painter's eyes, and drew all sorts of things before moving on to count frogs and eat lunch.

It was a pretty awesome way to spend a Thursday morning.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

Random Anecdote

Friday night the boys went to yet another Nats game, leaving Nora and I to fend for ourselves. Nora decided to take her grocery cart outside and then asked me where her grocery store should be. I suggested "Ann's" as our neighbor 2 doors down has a more open space in front of her house. We walked over to Ann's house and upon arriving, Nora proceeded to bend over and stare intently at the ground. Every so often, she would stand up and ask me where her grocery store was, to which I responded, with a note of confusion, "It's Ann's house." Finally, after several minutes had passed, Nora stood triumphantly, pointed to an ant and shouted, "Oh, there's my grocery store!"

Thursday, May 03, 2012

San Francisco


I had another trip out to Palo Alto for an conference at Stanford this past week, and thanks to Elaine's willingness to hold down the fort while I was away, I took an extra day and a half over the weekend to visit friends in San Francisco.  As always, it was great to catch up with my oldest friend Brendan.  We took advantage of the lovely weather to relax in Dolores Park, climb up to see the view from the top of Bernal Heights Park, eat some delicious food truck pork belly buns, and of course topped it all off with a great sushi dinner.  I also made it over to Albany (just north of Berkley) to see Emilie, and get all the latest updates from Occupy Farm and the Albany Patch.  Then it was down to Stanford to present my latest and for a very productive two day workshop.

(click here for the pictures)