Friday, November 8, 2013

Halloween and More

Ana is 2 and a half years old! She got to decide what was dinner on her half birthday. She said she wanted burritos and she wanted to eat in a restaurant, so we did. She is beautiful.

The kids and Tami went to a high school football game with me. Ana is a super climber. I like to not limit her too much which meant letting her climb a bit while I stood next to her to protect her. Then I realized that I was working and I wouldn't let another kid be climbing all over the place like she was. Unfortunately, there was another kid who started doing the same right next to Ana. I figured the other girl was next to her dad too, so I would just be ok with him having the responsibility. Then, I let Ana know it was time to go somewhere else for a bit. Which kind of works. The girl loves to climb. And she is so capable and confident.

Part of my job involved being in a parade. Parades seem to be a much more important part of my life in recent years. Tami and the kids showed up too. From a distance I could see this crazy-cool spaceship that Enzo had on. So cool. Tami told me she made it for him in 15 minutes that morning.

He asked for a window at a specific spot so she put that in. Or as she explained it, she built it to spec.

I gotta say, I was impressed. I mean really impressed. It was just a used cardboard box but with a little creativity Tami had created a toy that my kid loved to play with. In following days parts of the kitchen were cordoned off with tape by Enzo as his spaceship garage. He put toys and a "tool box" in the top portion and he would work on his spaceship fixing it while Ana completed various spaceship garage responsibilities. Just awesome. At one point my son was under a table on his back looking up at the bottom of the table, arms extended to it with his "tools" as he fixed part of his space port. So many memories came back of my childhood on 15th street under the 6ft long table my uncle had made when he was in high school. Me with my "tools" fixing the table/spaceship/car from below for so long that my little 5 year old arm muscles would burn and I would have to let them rest. It was awesome to see Enzo doing something similar in his imagination. I marveled. Which is more valuable that taking a photo.... but I tried to take the photo at one point and by then the spaceship mechanic had moved on to other tasks. The moment was superb and I am so glad I got to see it.

On the Sunday before Halloween we had a pumpkin carving day. Lots of fun.

Of course, there were breaks for various oddities like watching a horse ride a horse very quickly. That's Ana's smile in there.

Tami helped Ana carve her pumpkin. She did this by drawing out several mouths, noses, and eyes on a paper and then asking Ana what she would like Tami to carve into her pumpkin and where. And so my daughter ended up with this interesting pumpkin with three mouths on it. And I thought, what a crazy revolutionary liberal minded artsy granola wife I have. She didn't tell her no, Ana, pumpkins get two eyes one mouth and maybe a nose. She just said ok and Ana smiled and got a pumpkin as she ordered it. That's the mother of my kids. I love my wife.
Which reminds me of another story. I don't have the pictures yet but I saw them on Tami's phone. Tami told me about the school day my kids had a few days ago and I'll tell you now that at the end of the conversation I told Tami how glad I was that our kids go to the school that they do. So, the kids, including Ana and Enzo, are painting on a large paper in class. After a while Tami looks over and sees that Enzo is standing with his foot up behind him as he uses the paint brush to paint his bare foot. Then, loaded with paint, he swings his foot in front of hm and paints his foot print on to the paper in front of him. Tami says, and she told me this would not have happened at home but in her school it was different, "you want to paint with your feet?" So she tapes down a large piece of paper on the tile, places three plates with paint on them on the floor, gives the kids the ground rules about staying on the paper and asking- then waiting patiently for her help- when they decide they are done painting with their feet so she can help them clean themselves. So cool! What kind of parent/teacher enables such craziness? That's my wife and I am so glad my kids go to her school.  

This is Tami's pumpkin.

 This is Enzo's pumpkin that Tata helped him to carve.

This is Hun's pumpkin.

The kids had picked out this giant pumpkin for me because they liked all of the bumps on it, according to Tami. I carved a train for them.

Shea did this elaborate ghost.

I took a picture of what this looked like from the pumpkin's perspective from inside as Shea carved.

Shea did this great job!

Ana's in the dark.

Recent Ana story: Recently, while I was at work, Ana was whimpering. Tami did not know why. Finally, Ana said to Tami "I need help." Tami learned that Ana had stuffed a pomegranate seed into her nose. Why would anyone do that? I don't know. I have heard other friends talk about these kinds of things like going to the doctor with an m&m or a dime in their nose as kids. So I know it happens but it still is funny and odd as I just don't remember doing anything like that. Maybe nothing got stuck for me and that's the only reason, I don't know. Anyway, Tami couldn't get it out but eventually she was able to help Ana blow it out.

Enzo's in the dark.

Recent Enzo story: We got ready for bed one night while Tami was at night school. We go to read and are having a great time. We start reading Dr. Seuss's ABC's for our second book and the kids are just doing great trying to sing and even point to letters as I read anticipating the alphabet. I don't know how much they really know but they were doing great. One of the fun things that showed me Enzo really knows some of those letters is that Enzo started saying the alphabet backwards as he pointed starting from Z. He got a a few letters in when he made up a "letter".. something like "alaaablah" and I started laughing! I think this was on Ana's 2 and a half year birthday. Anyway, then we all started laughing so hard in bed. Ana and Enzo then both took turns reciting parts of the alphabet, forward for Ana and backwards for Enzo, for a few letters and then going into a made up letter followed by extreme ruckus! Not what you would consider conducive to a bed time routine (shadows of a previously stated theme?) but somehow it worked out and the kids did eventually fall asleep. But before we slept, Enzo says "I'm starving." For what seems like an eternity of 2 seconds I want to tell him the joke but know he is not ready yet at three years old but I can't help my self and go with it and blurt out "I'm Papi!" I doubt he had time to process that as a joke but being practiced myself in the jokes of equivocation I started laughing in the dark. Enzo paused for a second and then started laughing too. Ana had now fallen asleep but Enzo clearly needed to test this new joke.
E: I'm starving!
Me: I'm Papi!!!!
(ruckus laughter)
E: I'm an orange!!!
Me: I'm Papi!!!!
 (ruckus laughter!!!!!!!!!!!)
And that went on for a few rounds until eventually we did settle down and Enzo too, fell asleep.

Papi's in the dark.

Recent both-kids story: It was nap time and it was me that was tired while Tami was off doing homework one weekend day. Which means that the kids were wide awake but I was going to try anyway. The gem if this story is not that I got some rest, because I didn't. But at one point, the kids were face to face on the bed and Enzo throws his arms around Ana and holding her says "I love you Ana."

A few seconds go by. Enzo continues to have his arms wrapped around Ana. Ana says a few things and then throws her arms around him and says "I love you Enzo."

It is a beautiful and perfect world that I live in.

Shea's in the dark.

Nicole's in the dark.

 Hun's and others in the dark.

Remember Halloween in school?

Ana is a cat and Enzo is a lion.
Is this a Counting Crow's song?
"I want to be a lion
Everybody wants to pass as cats
We all want to be big big stars, but we got different reasons for that...."

On Halloween, Ana getting ready to transform into a cat and trying on her Mami's shoes while she waits for her brother.
Why is her brother taking so long? Well, he decided he didn't want to be a lion anymore when he goes trick-or-treating. He wanted to be a spaceman in his spaceship that his Mami had made him as a toy. Well, ok then.

Thinking about this post, it is starting to appear to me that the theme of this post is accidentally permissive parenting. For the record, I assure you that my kids are well behaved..... Or do I profess too much? Well, they are.. when they are not hungry.... or tired... or have to go to the bathroom.... You know what, they are perfect angels. That's all there is to it.

Aunti JoJo, baby Layla (in womb), and Cousin Vincent joined us for trick-or-treating. It is always a treat to see Aunti JoJo and even more so since baby Layla has come in to the picture. And Cousin Vincent, we haven't seen much lately so it was great to see him. The cool thing is that he has become a regular for Halloween since we have had the kids. I don't know if that is a conscious thing but it is interesting and great that the kids get to enjoy family on this odd celebration of humanity in our world.

My mom made the trick or treat bags this year. Both grandma's are great at making things for the kids. I would almost believe this was a dying art if it weren't for the fact that Tami still sews on occasion or whips out spaceships from a few inches of tape and a box in the garage.

Here is another example of sewing. My mom watched the kids one night when I had a school fundraiser to attend and Tami had a school marketing event to attend.While the kids were there my mom made them capes to play with that were reversible. Enzo's has spaceships on one side and "Super Guy" on the other. I may not have written about this but there are times in the last several weeks when Enzo will yell out "I'm not Enzo!!!!! I'm SUPER GUY!!!!!" Ana's has butterflies on one side and "Ana" on the other. By the way, Enzo declared his first "when I grow up..." job to me in the last couple of days.

"When I grow up I am going to be a Super Guy Astronaut." -Enzo

Ana has not been left out of his future plans. Enzo will also have a spaceship. But he will wait for people to get on and off. Ana will not be allowed in the back of the spaceship because only boys can go back there. I'm just reporting this for history. I couldn't get to the reasoning either. Also, I am allowed back there because I am a boy. I tried to question this because I like boys and girls and want my daughter to have it all in life. But, who can fully understand children's minds? I felt a little better, though I still do not know the rationale, to learn more from Enzo. Ana is allowed in the front of his spaceship and Ana will also have her own "Super Guy Ana Spaceship" that she will fly.

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