the farm show

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This weekend we took Cameron out to Harrisburg to see the Pennsylvania Farm Show with the Sikorskis. It was an event. Have you ever seen a teenager smack a bull in the ass to force it forward in a crowd of farmer-type people and floors wet with something you’d rather not identify? Pretty awesome. The boys loved every minute of it, especially the milkshakes and fried mozzarella on sticks at the end of the afternoon.

At one point, Matt said he wished he could come back and spend more time really enjoying the farm show–he missed the wine area and wanted to try the brisket. I agreed. I so wanted to see the elusive cheese sculpture and smell the local Christmas trees and watch the too-serious judging panel of the angel food cake contest and especially check out what exactly makes PA’s #1 potato the best.

But then we ran through the underground tunnel to the parking lot until we were sweaty and breathless, with Joey and Cameron squealing on our shoulders as we spun and hopped and giggled along, and it was silly and wonderful and the best possible way you could think of to spend your time, and so maybe at the end of the day we didn’t actually miss out on much.

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This is what happens when little kids get bored after a busy day–Joey starts breakdancing to the “kick song” he learned at school and Cameron actually eats fruit.

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We rounded off our weekend with a quick and awesome trip to the Valley Forge Park…
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christmastime

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What was the best Christmastime memory of 2012? Was it Cameron’s reaction to my dad dressed as Santa Claus…the snowfall on the Saturday after Christmas…opening presents and smelling candles at Uncle Rob’s house…a full-on family sleepover at Kate’s house on Christmas night, including the doggies…Cameron’s political “nice to meet you” handshake and grin to everyone he sees, stranger or not…our Pollyanna dinner and gift exchange (including a Bible school “Jesus Touch Me” box, Scott’s new worm farm, and a Friskies Houck family portrait)…

My favorite thing about this time of year is how much time I get to spend with the people who are important to me.

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When did my little baby become a little boy?

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three turkeys, Thomas the train, and a third birthday

Happy Thanksgiving 2012! We celebrated our early turkey day this year several times over the weekend. Cameron loved every moment of playing with all of his cousins, running in the backyard with Zumi and Merv, and traveling with Mommy and Daddy. Here’s a little peek into our weekend…

Thanksgiving at Sherri’s with Matt’s family and our beautiful nieces, nephew, son, and of course Chloe:

Followed by Thanksgiving Dinner at our house:

Followed by Joey’s insanely fun and absolutely exhausting Thomas-themed third birthday party:

Of course, we spent some time playing in the backyard at Cameron’s explicit request:

And last but not least, more turkey at Grandpop’s house on Sunday:

And it’s the Christmas season in our home (don’t mind the squirrel atop our tree, he’s temporary until we get a real star). Happy holidays! 🙂

we play in our pajamas until noon in this house

So apparently my blog posts have been missed. Sorry about that–life has been getting in the way. I will try to post more often.

It has definitely turning into fall outside (my favorite time of year!) and Cameron is loving the outdoors even more than usual. I’m doing lots more laundry as a result since every pair of his pants is covered in grass stains. It’s worth every fold–just look at this joyful guy.

Joey and Cameron are like little monkeys when they’re with each other. Little, climbing, chattering, scrambling, noisy, wrestling, goofy monkeys. It’s impossible to get a picture where they’re both in focus, but I’ve got about 200 of their blurry little bodies if you’re interested

Also, I’m pretty sure any conversation between Joey and Cameron goes like this:

Joey: Baby Cameron I need, I need hold hands.

Cameron: No.

P.S. 99 days until Christmas! (but who’s counting?)

good old dad

My dad says weird things when he speaks in public (and sometimes when he speaks in private as well). When my sister and Scott got married, Dad’s sentimental speech included a random reference to Kate as “twitchy.” I’m still scratching my head over that one…I guess he’s just a funny communicator.

One of my favorite weird Dad moments was his speech at our wedding, which included a sad story about a little kid whose butt fell off (really). Somehow, he segued that into how the father-daughter relationship changes as daughters become adults. I remember being confused by the whole thing…especially the part about how he started to like me more as I got older (“didn’t he always like me??”).

In the last few years, my dad and I have done some long-overdue bonding, and I’m finally starting to make some sense of his speech. It was never a question of how much he loved me. Instead, I think he was trying to say how neat it is, knowing each other better and liking each other more as we both grow up old on concurrent timelines.

Amazingly, I’ve learned that he’s a really funny guy under his sweet awkwardness. He has one of those irresistibly infectious laughs, that rare ability to connect with little kids, and pretty great taste in music (accompanied by a goofy little boogie when he really likes a song).

Cameron loves my dad as much as I do–loves to growl at him, loves to be scooped up into his arms, loves when my dad smells his hair and bites his earlobes.

Dad turned sixty last Wednesday and we celebrated over the weekend with a party in his new pool. All night, he smiled broadly, chased his grandkids around the pool, grilled happily, laughed wholeheartedly, and proudly showed off his trains in the basement to the little ones.

I can’t wait for my son to get to know him better, and to grow into a relationship with him as I finally have.

I love you Dad.

Best. Goggles. Ever.

no kids!

I spent the first two years of our marriage refusing to consider the possibility of having children. I’d want to discuss this topic to death with Matt (“But you want kids–don’t you want a wife who wants a family too?”) . Not one to engage in much debate, he’d always just smile and say, “I know you’ll want them someday.” I swore up and down (loudly, frequently, often drunkenly) that he was wrong.

After my sister Kate had her son (my nephew Joey), I started to gain some perspective about these neat little creatures we call children. Joey barfs and poops and cries a whole lot, and especially at first.

He also smells better than suntan lotion, warm rain, and the Yankee Candle store combined. His hair curls into little brown-blond ringlets at the end and his skin is always cool, sometimes sticky. He likes to share things with Aunt Meg. He changes the meaning, feeling, and joy of Christmas.

Needless to say, I was pregnant before Joey turned ten months old. Matt was right (dammit!).

Last night, we had an early dinner then went for a family walk down to the park to practice walking with our baby Frankenstein. I was thinking about what our life was like before Cameron came around. What did I do before I went to bed each night? (Now I brush my teeth, stop in to Cameron’s room for a soft belly squeeze and to touch his hair, have my tuck-in from Matt, and say a little thankful prayer for the health and happiness of our family.) What was incentive enough for me to get out of bed in the mornings, and sometimes in the dead of night too? (As far as I can remember, nothing–other than my bladder–ever had this power.)

What I’m trying to say is, one half-hour on the swings with this little boy, with his smells and tumbles and farts and nibbly ears…I’d never trade it for anything.

Happy family.