SJ on the Move

Monday, April 27, 2009

Patriot Games

This past weekend we went to a re-enactment of the Battle of Menotomy Rocks as part of the Patriot's Day festivities. Never having been to a Revolutionay War re-enactment, we weren't really sure what to expect. I tried to prep SJ a bit, letting her know that some men were going to be pretending to fight - there could be lots of yelling, and people pretending to be hurt - but that she shouldn't be afraid, as it was all pretend.

So, we set ourselves up near the British end of the "battlefield" and waited for the excitement to begin. There were nearly a dozen RedCoats, all dressed up in quite elaborate costumes with muskets and bayonets. They were opposed by about 20 Colonials, a little ways down the road.

At about the time the battle was supposed to begin, the RedCoats seemed to be getting a little antsy. An "emissary" from the Colonials approached to discuss how the battle was going to play out. There was a little bit of jovial (at least what we thought) back and forth, and then the RedCoats announced that they were leaving. The Colonials thought they were joking, but then the RedCoats started getting in their cars. Evidently, their feelings were hurt. The Colonials were quite astonished and asked them to stay. The RedCoats asked why it was "necessary to disrespect them that way?" It was really a strange scene.

Eventually, the Colonials and RedCoats mended fences so they could get on with the business of shooting at each other. Nevertheless, it didn't really seem like their heart was in it. My fears of an intense battle scene ended up being unfounded. It was a lot of slow walking around with half-hearted firing of muskets, no yelling, no excitement, and no casualties.

I don't know if they had something similar to the Onion back in 1776. But if they did, it wouldn't surprise me if they had satirical headlines such as "British flee Boston after social snub at tea time" or "British go back to England, tired of uncivilized Bostonians" - or something similar with a lot more thees and thous and the the use of superflous 'e's.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

A Day in Boston

One of the nice things about having out of town guests is that you often get to enjoy touristy things your city has to offer - things you don't usually think of doing. Today SJ, my parents, and I went to downtown Boston to enjoy a ride on the Swan Boats. I've lived in Boston for nearly 12 years now and have never done this boat ride! SJ's lived in Boston her whole life and has never visited the Public Garden! So, we felt it was about time to partake in something historic.

SJ strutted around the Garden with her sunglasses on, purse on her shoulder, and with the confidence of a true grown-up!

Our first stop was to visit the Make Way for the Ducklings statues.

Next we headed to the Swan Boats. It was a beautiful spring day!

After a little bit of shopping on Charles Street we headed to the Bull and Finch Pub (a.k.a. Cheers) for lunch. A serving of their famous Boston Creme Pie was the perfect ending to a beautiful day in Boston!

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Family Project

With the arrival of SJ's Grandparents came several days of outdoor work. The first project was to put in a flower/bush bed in the corner of our backyard. While Nathan and my Dad dug out the space, my Mom and I went to a fabulous Garden Center to pick out the bushes. In the end it turned out great!

With the success of that flower bed we decided to expand another one along the back of our house. We went back to the Garden Center (in the rain this time) and picked out another bunch of bushes and flowers.

The next day we laid more grass seed and fertilizer on our lawn. We've been watering it twice a day and hope to have a nice, green, plush yard with fabulous blooming bushes and plants in no time!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Arlington's Patriot's Day Parade

This afternoon we headed to Arlington Center to watch the town's Patriot's Day parade. One of the things that was most exciting to SJ was that some of the people in the parade threw candy to the kids. The first time candy was thrown SJ stood idly by watching the other older kids run into the street. The second time, SJ's Daddy went and got her a piece. The third time, SJ ran and picked up one piece of candy. The fourth time, SJ ran out and gathered all the candy she could then proceeded to run down the street after the car throwing the candy in order to gather more! It didn't take her long at all to learn this process!

Other interesting sights at the parade were the blend of old and new. You have new firetrucks and old Redcoats, new Star Wars characters and old stagecoaches.

After the parade we were going to watch a reinactment of a battle fought along this road between the militia and the Redcoats. SJ was quite disturbed by the loud gunfire so we didn't stick around too long.

Welcome Grandma and Grandpa

SJ is thrilled to have her Grandma and Grandpa visiting her for a whole week! This means she wakes up between 5:45 and 6:30 each day ready to go! She's just too excited to sleep.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter 2009

The day before Easter SJ did her egg decoration. She always has lots of fun with this. At the end she usually ends up dipping a few eggs into EACH cup before finally declaring it's done. I tried to get her to see the beauty of just a solid purple or solid blue egg, but she firmly believed adding ALL the colors to one egg was the way to go!

On Easter Sunday we all went to church. Since it was a special day there was no children's church SJ had to stay in "big" church with us. Our pastor was giving a great Easter message and said that Easter was not about bunnies and candy, but about Jesus' resurrection. Well, we know SJ was listening since after he said the part about Easter NOT being about bunnies and candy SJ looked over at us and said with a very serious look, "It really IS about those things." Just in case anyone else overhead I quickly added, "Well, it's about Jesus first, then about bunnies!" I guess it shows us that we still need to work on helping SJ reflect on the TRUE meaning of Easter.

After we got home from church SJ did her at-home indoor egg hunt which involved about 5 dozen eggs, mostly plastic ones. It took me and Nathan a long time to hide them all.

Then we headed up to Newburyport to spend the day with Nathan's family. While there he hid some eggs outside for SJ to find in the back yard. This outdoor egg hunt seems to be a tradition for Nathan's family. They say it then doesn't matter if you can't find an egg! One year SJ's Aunt Emily found an egg from the previous year. Yeah, I can imagine the smell that egg would have caused if it was hidden inside. Anyway, in Boston tradition, the weather was cold - only about 45 degrees and very windy. (The good news was that at least it was sunny out.) Right after this picture was taken SJ ran inside to put on her winter coat!

Overall, SJ had a great day with lots of egg hunting, candy eating, and receiving of little Easter gifts.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

The Next Generation of Ultimate Frisbee

This spring SJ has discovered the Frisbee (which, she likes to call the Krispee!) Last Sunday Nathan met up with some folks to play a game of ultimate Frisbee at the park. SJ was very intrigued and all week has enjoyed taking the Frisbee outside throwing it has hard as she can and then running after it - repeating this process for 20-30 minutes. Every 10th throw is actually a good one, BUT (and this is very important) NEVER let down your guard when around her! She throws it with such force and without any aim you really don't know which way it will go!

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Happy Birthday Nathan!

Today was Nathan's birthday. SJ offered to "help" him open the presents and cards. She did say that he could do more and she would do less since it was actually his birthday. Being the good Daddy that he is he told her she could help! When it came time to blow out the candle on the cake she once again offered her excellent birthday helping skills. Nathan agreed they would blow it out together on the count of 3. Well, on "one" SJ proceeded to blow out the candle herself! This resulted in a bunch of laughter all around. I offered to relite the candle for Nathan to have his chance, but he declined. I guess after 35 years the candle blowing looses some of his luster!

Monday, April 06, 2009

I feel old

I was thinking today of all the things that SJ is growing up knowing. Things that didn't even exist when I was a kid. She will possibly never know what a walkman is or a hardbound encylopedia. She'll never get to ride a bike without a helmut and she'll be confined to a car seat until she's 80 pounds. She will never experience life without a computer or Google or instant messaging. I can picture future SJ going to a musuem with an exhibit entitled, "Growing up in the 70's and 80's...What Life was Like Back Then." Here's a few of the things I thought about. I'm sure there are many others, but the more I think about them the older I feel!

  1. iPods. If you were lucky when I was a kid you had a walkman you put a tape in. Not to mention those big, black headphones that went with it.

  2. Cell Phones. Remember the old fashioned rotary phones?

  3. Computers. If you had to type something you did it on a typewriter. If you kept records you did it on paper!

  4. The Internet. If I wanted to look something up I went to the library or consulted my set of Encyclopedia Brittanicas.

  5. Digital Cameras. We had a Polaroid instant camera and then there were the 35mm film cameras.

  6. Bike Helmets. Back when I was a kid I don't recall people feeling riding a bike was so risky that one needed a helmet. And, kids even got to ride in the front seat of the car! We really lived life on the edge!

  7. Remote Controls. I always thought one reason my parents had kids was so we would get up to change the channel on the t.v. Thankfully we only had 3 channels back then.

  8. TiVo. Later we got a VCR and that was so cool!

  9. CD/DVD. Remember 8 tracks, record albums, tapes? And once you could rent a movie you had to specify Beta vs. VHS.

  10. Dishwashers. This was another reason I thought why parents had kids :)