Photos: April 2009 Archives

At the end of a long day


All I want to do is bake.

And then eat it all, obviously.
Backdoor breeze

I live for these days. The days when a breeze roars through the backdoor,


when the honeysuckle stretches and begins to knot and curl again,

Backyard fence

when the smell of a neighbor's bar-be-cue wafts over the fence, along with Mike Shannon's voice calling the Cardinal's pitches,


When the irises are the gem of the garden,


when the boys take to the dirt and bugs again (and I have to watch for Liam's asthma and allergies),


and when the afternoon winds down and grows silent as tired boys sleep.

This is one of my favorite times of the year.

A short haiku

My camera. Let me show you it.

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Five things

Life with kids

1. Do you see the Star Wars' Legos in the photo? There are Legos all over my house in the oddest places. As I stumbled into the bathroom early this morning I almost screamed and passed out after stepping on a little Hans Solo who was pointing his gun at my toilet.

2. My throat is sore. I've made it this far into spring without an allergy-induced respiratory illness of some kind, please let me make it to summer, pleaseohplease.

3. I was having trouble with my sinuses last night and sprawled out on the sofa and Chris made me hot chocolate. With marshmallows. That man.

4. Trying to teach an eight-year-old about the digestive system has made me feel sorry for all the times I laughed in biology when we talked about procreation.

5. There is clean laundry piled on top of my dryer, dust bunnies colonizing in the corners of my house, I'm exhausted, but it will be 80-degrees on Friday and the sunshine cannot come fast enough.    

Monkey see ...

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Liam playing

Every afternoon Liam plays on the piano. He's just a beginner, but he's learning. He already sings beautifully.

Ewan joins

Ewan is fascinated by everything his big brother does and watches in earnest.

Watching closely

Some have asked how I am able to teach both of them at home. I credit Ewan's desire to match the pace set by his brother.
Ewan's turn

It makes him eager to step up for his turn.

Liam watches

Because Liam appreciates having a fan (or a minion, depending on the circumstance) he welcomes it and encourages his brother. Being an only child myself, this is a wonderful thing to witness.


Even if it's sometimes hard to catch the moments.

Easter Day

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When I was a kid my entire family would pile into Grandma and Grandpa's tiny house in the Ozarks for every single holiday. The kids would run and holler up and down the small hallway and scream while running through the woods. After Christmas, Easter was my favorite holiday because it was the only day on which I had a divine right to eat an obscene amount of candy without fear of punishment from my parents. Chocolate rabbits are the childhood meth rock and after we all got tweaked up we'd trample Grandma's front yard, her daffodils, and every living thing in sight as we searched for eggs.

The hunt is on

After they passed away we stopped going to the Ozarks. The family unit split apart due to infighting and betrayal, and it's all just a very depressing story. Besides a good character and virtues and all of that, I wanted to raise up my children to know the same sort of large, loud family with which I grew up. They got a little bit of that this past Sunday and for the first time in six years I had a holiday (aside from last Christmas at my aunt's house) that felt a little bit more like "home."


After the boys decorated their plastic eggs with stickers, I stayed up late the night before and filled them with candy and loose change. I ran out about a third of the way through and left the rest of them empty. The next day the kids littered Chris's mom's front yard with the empty eggs and I was all "What about the THRILL OF THE HUNT? Back in MY day ..." and then I realized how incredibly old I sounded. So, eggs = FAIL.

My mother enjoys the tradition she created of buying the boys' Easter outfits each year; this year Paw-Paw bought them and Ewan did not want to take his dress shoes off. He kept talking about how fancy they were except he said fancy with three syllables and somewhere up in Heaven my Grandma smiled.


The grandparental units insist on getting the kids chocolate rabbits and Chris's mother surprised them with an actual pirate's chest she made herself filled with chocolate coins, costume jewelry, a parrot puppet, and tons of other things. "I love pirates and Easter!" Liam exclaimed.

Easter egg hunt

Just as I trampled all over my grandmother's yard, so did the boys trample all over their grandmother's yard. They had the best time climbing the hills, chasing each other, sharing candy, and trying to bust our ear drums. I watched them run around, remembering how much fun it used to be and I realized that I wasn't one of "the grandkids" anymore; I was one of "the kids." We're all slowly marching up a giant, generational staircase towards the only thing certain besides taxes. In the spirit of Easter, we'll all be together again after, someday.

See the entire photo set here.

He has my eyes

Ewie Ewan

His cheeks weigh about five pounds each.
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Dana asks: "Thanksgiving Traditions: Yours or Your Mother's?"