Sunday, October 20, 2013


Before the mountains, this is Enzo writing A's for Ana. Pretty cool.

We went hiking at Castle Rock State Park Saturday. We had a great time.

These kids are both good climbers.

On Sunday I took the kids to Mt. Tamalpais north of the Golden Gate. I just really wanted to go for a drive and get to the top of a mountain for the view. Tami did homework while we went for the drive. And then the three of us had dinner near the mountain and I drove us home in the dark while the kids fell asleep.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Party and Construction

My birthday party.

Ok, not really. But these four did have a lot of fun at my house for breakfast and it felt a little like a special birthday party breakfast. Nathan and his two youngest, Charlotte and Baby Jack, coming over was a special treat. Now, we enjoy all of our company and all kids. But, there are two kids about their age who my children do not go to school with and of whom they talk about often. One is Micah. Micah Micah Micah. The other is Charlotte. Charlotte Charlotte Charlotte. If there is anyone my kids want to go on a spaceship with, have come over, visit at their house, share birthday cake with, or pick up to go for a car ride with, it is Micah and Charlotte. Which is interesting because really, my kids have only really spent a handful of days in all of time with either Micah or Charlotte. None the less, we here their names a lot. So, having Charlotte and Baby Jack come over was great. It was fun to chat with Nathan, too. A rare special treat. Another friend we hear about often, a little older, is Shea. She comes up often. If I say please eat your dinner so you can grow up big, strong and healthy like Papi, they will say "big like Shea?" Yes. All things about having to wait until they are older or bigger mean I will be questioned and have to answer how this "rule" relates to Shea. She is the measurement by which they make meaning of the world with respect to kids and adults. Such rules or standards that have come up in recent weeks include those about "I want a cat" (Ana), "I want my own real baby" (Enzo and Ana), "can kids stay home without Mami's and Papi's" (Enzo), "can I go to work, I want a job" (Enzo), "I can ride a real motorcycle" (Ana). My answer to each of these, and others, was followed with the inevitable question rephrased to find out if Shea is old enough or big enough for a "yes" answer.

I didn't take any pictures at my birthday dinner. However, my sister-in-law took this picture with my phone of my kids kissing with apple wedge smiles in their mouths that night. Everyone, including the kids, thought this was super funny.
By the way, I don't remember when it stopped but Ana does not call Enzo "daddy" any more. Some time ago she replaced it with an at least equally adorable "Enn-no.""Enn-no, look! Enn-no, Enn-no, Enn-no look." Awesome. 

This is a picture Tami sent to me of my son and one of his constructions.

Speaking of constructions, we have been doing a lot of work to our back yard.... major earth moving.

I have been toying with the idea of a sand box for the kids. In the mean time, I added more dirt to their dirt pot that they play with.

I am particularly proud that my daughter, only two years old, is already thinking about and trying out supervisory positions.

I am also particularly proud of my son, though seriously, not as much as he is of his own accomplishment, for this road he built on our patio and which he put a lot of time into. It was gone over several times and given diligent attention. It went a little over budget and required an extra fill of the dirt pot. A small price for progress in our back yard.

Monday, October 14, 2013


I made it almost a year off of medication without a major anxiety episode. And if you had asked me about how I was doing with respect to anxiety two weeks ago, as my friend Don happened to do, I would have also told you that I was doing great and glad that it was almost a year without an issue and without medication. Life is good. And it is. However, last week I had a significant anxiety episode and it messed me up for days. I feel like I am just now coming around to normal. Anyway, I don't really want to write about it all today, I just want to make this note as a place holder for the record. Hopefully I'll come back to this a little later. One result is that I decided to try medication again. Now I am trying a different SSRI anxiety medication than I was a year ago with the thought that perhaps the side effects will be non existent, less, or tolerably different. We shall see. I am still in the beginning of gradually building up to a full dose. The interesting thing is that this anxiety and panic occurred despite the fact that I was having such great days just before. Despite the fact that I was having so much time in the days before to play with my kids and to do the things that I enjoy. I can't say I fully understand anxiety or panic attacks or my body. Anyway, I am currently feeling all right and and grateful for all that I have going for me including my family. I did have to stay home from work one day and I wisely watched/listened to two great movies and in one of them, Away We Go, there is the this beautiful and sweet song called Wait by Alexi Murdoch. I hope you enjoy.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Birthday Month Goes On

I do love October.

I went as a chaperone for the first time on a field trip with Enzo. He and his class got a tour of a Pizza My Heart. They got to see how they make pizza and then make their own.

After, the kids all went across the street and walked around SJSU. It didn't take long before a walk turned into a run in the grass. These kids turn pizza into energy very quickly. Look how much fun he is having running around.

Ana had a lot of fun decorating my face with stickers one night. I couldn't see at the time but I tried to get a few pictures. I laughed later looking at them and seeing her expressions as though she was really focusing and thinking about each sticker and how it should be placed. She is so funny.

What do you do when you have one week night available to do anything? Go to Santa Cruz, get a hotel near the beach, and enjoy a mini vacation. And, if it's your birthday month? Buy yourself three Tonka toys  on the way as a birthday present to yourself so that you can watch your kids play in the sand. I'm brilliant at times because this mini vacation was exactly what I needed. We played on the beach at night, walked to dinner and breakfast, and played again on the beach in the day.

Ok- I love the stomp rocket. Enzo figured out how to get the rockets to launch really high on this trip. He got his technique down. Look how much fun he is having! I think he likes it even more than I.


Ana and I walked in the water for a while, too. What an excellent day.

 Oh, and I forgot to mention that Monte went with us on this trip. I think he had a good time. Especially when Enzo played throw-the-tennis-ball-in-the-hotel-room Friday morning, over and over for so long, as the rest of us tried to be lazy for a while. I think Monte liked that a lot.