Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hello, Bonjour, Buenos Dias

Just a little preview of Nora's Spring Concert :-)

Monday, February 17, 2014



With the Winter Olympics in full swing, a four day holiday weekend for the kids, and the biggest snowstorm in four years barreling down on us, what better time for an East Coast ski weekend.  We rented a condo on the slopes in Seven Springs, talked Katherine & Lee into joining us for what would be their first real ski trip, and just needed to make sure we could actually make it out of town with up to a foot of snow on the way in DC on Thursday.  Our hastily created plan B was to assume everything would be closed on Thursday, and drive up to Pittsburgh to stay with Joe & Cate on Wednesday night, so we'd only have an hour drive to Seven Springs on Wednesday, and would hopefully miss the heaviest snow.

The plan worked for the most part, we made it up to Pittsburgh Wednesday night, had a lovely evening with the Mettenburgs, and awoke to reports of a foot of snow or more back home.  We had a leisurely beginning to the day as snow began to fall, and got ready to hit the road around two.  The only slight hiccup was that we couldn't get out of the driveway.  Joe & Cate had already made it out earlier with their more snow appropriate vehicles, but our poor van just spun its wheels trying to make it up the snowy hill at the end of the drive.  It took about 45 minutes of shoveling and salting before we managed to give the car enough traction to make it out of the drive.  Then we just had to make it the rest of the way to the mountain.

The roads in Pittsburgh and the Turnpike weren't too bad, but the snow was starting to come down hard, and reports from Katherine & Lee (who were doing the whole drive up on Thursday) were that the back roads were getting pretty bad.  Sure enough, it was some pretty white knuckle driving once we left the Turnpike, but we eventually made it to Seven Springs (amazingly just a couple minutes after Katherine & Lee).

You might think that once we were ensconced in our ski condo, with ready access to the slopes and no need to drive, we'd be home free, but one more obstacle arose when poor Nora threw up in the middle of the night.  It cost Nora a day of ski lessons, and Elaine a day on the slopes, but the girls very generously let the Owen and I ski on Saturday.  We enjoyed great snow conditions, some of the only sun the whole weekend that peeked out in the afternoon, and Owen gave Katherine & Lee some lessons (though I'm not sure they were really ready for him to lead them through the terrain park ;-).

Snow kept falling all weekend (about 2 feet in total), Elaine made it out on her skis, Owen had one private lesson, but skied mostly with me, Nora eventually had a great day in ski school on Sunday, plenty of Winter Olympics were watched, (not to mention Bravo), and Katherine & Lee had enough fun on the slopes that they might even be convinced to try it again someday.

(click here for all the pictures)


Sunday, February 09, 2014

Ice Slide

I joined the "Moms on the Hill" list-serve right around the time Nora was born. It's been a great resource for information about raising children (insights into schools, extra-curriculum programs, suggestions regarding different childhood ailments/issues) and living (recommendations for contractors, safety alerts), on Capitol Hill (and has also facilitated the buying and selling of several items).

But occasionally, disagreements break out on the list-serve, such as the infamous "by protesting the White Supremacist March you are giving credence to their cause" debate of 2012 and the "you were dismissive of the real issues the mother of the 'defiant pooper' was facing" controversy of 2014.

Such was the case in early February when in response to an inquiry regarding the appropriate dress code for the ice slide at the St. Elizabeth's East Gateway (snow pants or no snow pants), and received a response from another mom complaining that the city had spent $200,000 to install an ice slide in Anacostia in lieu of expenditures for recreation centers and libraries. This began a debate about the appropriate use of public tax dollars, if public employees are in fact worthless, what the Dowager Countess of Capitol Hill would do and whether one respondent's emails were in fact, "snotty ad hominem response" filled with "...personal invective."

I was riveted, immediately decided we had to go and invited the Browns to join us.

Our kids had an awesome time. The Browns... a bit less so. Poor Ben slammed his fingers in the car door when we got there and Mia's face hit the wall her first time down. But in the end, the kids all recovered and seemed to enjoy what some would deem, "a temporary boondoggle" and what we all thought was pretty awesome.

Saturday, February 08, 2014

And that's a pretty nice haircut...


Our children are not the most hirsute of people. Owen didn't receive his first haircut until he was well over 2 years old and with Nora, well, we've managed to hold off even longer.

At first it was because Nora didn't have a lot of hair. And then, since Nora's hair is so curly, it didn't seem like a lot. Eventually, we just became too attached to Nora's curls and feared introducing a barber to them would lead to their demise.

So we banned all scissors from her presence.

Time passed. Years passed and as her hair grew longer and longer, it became less and less manageable. Nora begged for her locks to be shorn. I argued that the time had come. But Allen remained steadfast... until I got Mom Mom on our side. And agreed to no bangs.

Allen conceded and I made an appointment for Nora at the children's salon upstairs from mine with Mom Mom joining us for moral support (and advice). She dutifully climbed into a car and watched Curious George while the stylist trimmed a little over an inch from her hair, collecting the fallen curls for me in a ziplock bag (which I promptly lost at Eastern Market).

Afterwards, we had a lovely snack at Le Pain Quotidien and did a little shopping before heading home to show Daddy Nora's new look. He totally approved.


Friday, February 07, 2014

Yogi Zsa Zsa


Sometimes you just need a picture :-)