Tuesday, November 3, 2009

These are the moments, part 2

Trick-or-treating was a total riot. I stood in the street, laughing until my belly hurt at that entire scene. A shot of the group.


Yeah, it took us a while.

I worried how Amelia would do with this, the strangest of rituals. I imagined us carrying her and her bucket, tears flowing, and us embarrassingly standing at stranger’s doors while she hid in the bushes.

Turns out that this little Punkin has a knack for standing at the homes of others and begging for food. Not only did she march up to front doors and knock, but she also let herself in when the doors opened! I chased her into the first few houses before she got the whole I-just-stand-here-and-look-cute-on-the-porch-routine. She’d set her little bucket down for safe candy deposit, say thank you (signed and grunted, I mean), and then promptly took a piece of candy from her bucket and put it in the giver’s bucket.

And I about melted into my shoes.

While Daddy carried her across the streets, she walked the whole rest of the way—all the way around an entire block! The best part? She carried that bucket the whole time too, even as it got heavier and heavier. The only hitch was her tendency to sit down on the sidewalk and begin organizing her goodies. (Everyone knows that if you give Amelia a container and multiple items to put in said container, she’ll be occupied for hours.)

Some of my favorite shots . . .


If you can believe it, she kept that hat on the WHOLE night! Even when it damn near covered her eyes.


Doesn’t she look like a pro?


Thanks for the candy! Would you like a Milky Way?


Everyone needs a lift now and then. (Hey Charlie! Where’s your hat, Bud?)






By the end of the night, we were down to two lone trick-or-treaters.


They were a solid team though, and got the job done. Even when tricky neighbors threw spooky ‘smoke’ in the way, they stayed together. DSCN1449

And by the end of the night, everyone was ready for bedtime.


Though not before a quick perusal of the loot.


It was a great Halloween, a great night with friends, and a great new tradition. I can’t help but think how much more fun it was to be with a group of other kids and how it wouldn’t have been the same with just us.

It also proved one of those moments in my life. The kind where you stop, take a breath, and realize that this is it. This is what life is about. Watching little ones trip their way through the neighborhood, while daddies hold hands, mommies take pictures, and the world sits still ever so briefly. I stood back across the street at the last house and watched our group make their way to the door while the homeowners gushed . . . and I caught my breath and choked up a bit.

Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.


Sunday, November 1, 2009

These are the moments (part one)

I’ve never much enjoyed Halloween. I stopped dressing up and perusing the neighborhood at the earliest age acceptable, and I’ve always thought adults who dress up are suspect in some way. Overall, there’s been a general bad vibe between the day and myself for no real reason as far as I can tell other than I don’t like spooky things.

Halloween is the perfect example of how Amelia fills in the lines of my life with color.  Brings spirit to the things that were lifeless and breathes newness into the routine that was my life before her. Last night stands as one of my all-time (well okay, in 17 months anyway) favorite Amelia memories.

We decided that we’d host a shindig at our place instead of going to and fro to celebrate in other neighborhoods. Time to round up a few of the seemingly endless supply of babies/toddlers close to home and celebrate together. We went pot-luck style and planned to eat, play, dress, and trick-or-treat all before bed time.

The Line-Up . . .

Coming in at the youngest position, Beck. He’s 3 months old, a lover of milk, and keen on kickin it late into the wee hours. He’s also the only player whose picture was nabbed before costume change. (Turns out playing hostess, Mommy, and photog are more complicated than it sounds)


Second, Parker. Beck’s cousin and 11 months old. He arrived at the party in his costume, (classic rookie move) and managed to include impressions of Drunk Old Man and Frankenstein over the course of the evening with his newly-acquired walking chops.

Little Diego, 7 months was also in attendance, though briefly. A military baby, he doesn’t stick around long enough to cause trouble and disappeared with more swiftness and stealth than he entered.

Amelia. Lone female in the group, standing proud at 32” and second oldest. Intent on kindness, she offered all the other kids her toys while quietly waiting for one of them to refer to her as ‘chick’ or ‘babe’ for which she was prepared to issue a firm “correction.”

Charlie. Long napper who prefers sleep in the daylight hours to partying in bulky get-ups after dark. At 2 1/2 he considers himself grown compared to the ‘babies’ in his company. Sweet and quiet, Charlie entered the party with a ping-pong paddle and left with a pair of pink sunglasses.

Speculation has it that he was issued one of Amelia’s “corrections.”

The Party

Though the standard party hosting stresses prevailed, I found myself giddy at the escalating noise level in the house and the constant flurry of chaos that occurs when parents are chasing their kids and kids are chasing each other. Running around the kitchen beading with sweat, I couldn’t help but laugh at the whole scene and breathe it in from time to time.

After dinner, it was costume time. As I was getting Amelia dressed, the house filled with cries of one meltdown after another as their parents stuffed them into a variety of humiliating outfits and then laughed out loud at the results. They fell like dominoes, those kids, to the desires of their parents to point, laugh, and play papparazzo.

We tried to get them lined up on the couch for one group shot a la Usual Suspects, but this is the closest we got to that.


Dude, you should see yourself.


Like dominoes (yup, that’s Parker wackin poor, harmless Beck in the face—and Amelia fleeing the scene of the crime.)


Poor Beck. He will have his day, this little pepper.


Charlie. Er, I mean MICKEY. Isn’t he convincing?


Ready to hit the road. Kinda. Doesn’t Parker give off a tiny hint of a Christmas Story?


Our little Punkin


Let’s DO THIS!



to be continued . . .