Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ice Skating in Downtown

One of the great things about having kids is that it gives you an excuse to do really fun things with people you might not otherwise get a chance to meet.

We hooked up on Saturday with our newest friends, the Mortimer-Petersons, to take the boys ice skating. Dash lasted about two laps, Davey maybe four. It was all very adorable and then we went to lunch and I had a Bloody Mary & a BLT. I cannot remember a better day.

Katie & Davey, who they call "David" when he's in trouble and it cracks me up. Such a grown up name for such a little dude!

From the moment we arrived Dash insisted that he already knew how to skate and that he would take to the ice alone, thankyouverymuch.

Then he got on the ice and turned to rubber.

Josh used to play ice hockey, so he was all, "chill the fuck out, I got this."

It was all too cute to stand.

He didn't want to skate after two laps, but refused to take the skates off until it was time to leave.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Big Boy Bed

I kept thinking that we'd keep Dash in his crib until he started trying to climb out. Except he's almost three and he still has never tried to climb out & I started to get concerned that the whole crib thing would come up for him in therapy one day so we said fuck it and graduated him into a big boy bed this weekend.

He fell out four times the first night (once totally silently--Josh just happened to check on him and find him on the floor). The next three times were accompanied by much yelling and indignation. I finally gave in at 5am and brought him into bed with me and Josh.

The next night he fell out once--again, silently. I found him sound asleep under the bed at 10:30pm. Last night he didn't fall out a single time.

But, still, he hates the new bed and is pretty pissed at us for making him switch.


We also got rid of his old dresser & converted the changing table into jammie & shoe storage.

We moved an old coffee table under the window. It'll serve as his new art space.

Getting rid of the dresser freed up some floor space for more toy storage. Because, you know, every kid needs THREE WHOLE ROOMS packed with toys.

I keep telling him that nothing bad can happen to him in his new bed because Superman & Batman are there to protect him. He isn't really buying it.

Monday, December 29, 2008


We finally let him open his scooter. He liked it pretty well.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


One of our dearest friends had the misfortune of being born too near the holidays to ever be properly celebrated. This year we tried to remedy the situation with Jenukkah (a birthday party for Jen with a Hanukkah menu. Jenukkah. What?)

Anyway, here are some pictures of the table. I don't have any more pictures because apparently grown people who have been cooking for 12 hours ought to eat a little something before pouring their fourth glass of Champagne. They found me asleep (euphemism for blacked out) on the floor in our room by 10pm.

Happy birthday, Jen. I promise to do better next year!

We had to bring in the patio table to accommodate everyone.

The good silver!

The placecards were actually a gift tag pdf from Ashley G here & here.

Jen's fiance (squee!), Tom, had a couple of spills at another friend's house so we decided to humiliate him by setting his place with a plastic Solo cup. Because we're nice people, that's why.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Another Christmas

God, it was a beautiful Christmas. The child is just starting to grasp the concept of Santa and gifts and the manipulation of the former in order to secure as many as possible of the latter. He just kinda walks around all day announcing, "I'm a good boy!" to anyone who'll listen. No behavior modification, though. As a matter of fact, it's all been much worse than usual. At one point I pointed out to him that only a crazy person throws MORE tantrums when Santa is watching, but in Dash's mind if he can't see Santa then Santa can't see him.

And I guess he's kinda right. Despite the behavior, there were so many amazing, wonderful things under the tree this year that we've still got a Razor scooter from my Dad & his wife tucked away. I feel like one more gift and his head will literally explode off his shoulders.

A few days before Christmas we took our 2nd annual Engel stroll around the neighborhood. The street just around the corner goes totally batshit for Christmas and it never ceases to amaze.

I made these for goody bags for Dash's teachers & our neighbors. They're meant to be peanut butter kiss cookies, but I replaced the kiss with a little bell-shaped Reeses peanut butter cup. Once the chocolate melted a little they started to look exactly like nipples. I packed them up & gave them out anyway. I think they're hilarious.

Aunty & Baba came over on Christmas Eve and we ate chili and opened a few gifts. We baked gingerbread cookies for Santa & left out a bowl of oats for the reindeer.

Messy reindeer!

Christmas morning

Lightning McQeen & The King. I actually bought these as stocking stuffers on a lark. A couple of days later Dash declared that they, along with an Iron Man toy, were all he wanted from Santa. I am fucking great at Christmas.

We all wore Christmas headgear courtesy of Aunty. Mostly Dash wore this tree around his waist.

The neighbors sent over a gift & this cookie. The gingerbread man had little candy buttons & Dash nearly broke a tooth trying to chip them off with his mouth.

They're listening to Black Sabbath's "Iron Man" and doing rock horns because we are totally awesome parents.

The cape. Which Dash refuses to believe I made & insists was a gift from Aunty. Seriously, he threw a tantrum when I tried to convince him otherwise.

Regaining his super-strength.

More gifts. Ever more gifts.

Oh. And there were roller skates. Which Dash insists are ice skates. But either way, he has spent nearly every waking minute since Christmas morning wearing them.

I love watching him skate. It looks like a deer learning to walk.

Merry, merry Christmas, sweet baby.

And now it is 1pm on December 27th. The tree is gone (except for a small disc Josh cut from the trunk. I'll turn it into an ornament for next year's tree.) All evidence of Christmas is gone and we finally have our regular old house back for the first time since early October. Although I'm a little sad to say goodbye to tinsel and snowflakes for another year, I'm happy to reclaim the house and a little more time to breathe. I think we all are.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008

So we meet again, Santa

There has been much discussion of Santa around our house lately. (It's really amazing that kids will just kind of accept that a fat, bearded guy with a giant sack of toys is going to break into our house in a few days & leave a bunch of presents under the tree.)

Anyway, Dash never really forgot the horror of his short visit with Santa last year. He has known for weeks that we'd pay him another visit, and every time we brought it up he made a point to tell me that he wanted to see Santa (to tell him what loot to deliver on Christmas), but that he would not sit on Santa's lap. (He actually started to come around to the idea of Santa's lap, but that that all went straight to hell the minute he laid eyes on the big man.)

So we sat, at first, on the arm of Santa's throne. Santa is a marvel with kids and he soon had Dash engaged in a discussion about Cars characters. We finally inched our way down to the seat next to Santa, but there would be no laps.

Later Dash's love, Lis Ana, showed up and they drank hot cocoa & threw coins into the fountain and all was well in the world.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Sing

Dash has been wandering around the house for weeks singing all sorts of Christmas songs we had no idea he knew. Turns out he was practicing for his school's Christmas Sing and Cookie Swap extravaganza.

It did not go particularly well.

He started crying from the stage as soon as he spotted me in the audience.

Then he stuck his finger in his mouth, where it remained for the duration of the song.

At least he wasn't alone in his terror. The entire stage was silent except for one little girl who grabbed the mic and sang her ass off.

Things improved once he left the stage and got his cookie fix.

Hi Baba!

PS: Do you think the person who brought Oreos to the cookie swap is the same person who brought Jack in the Box onion rings to the 4th of July Potluck bbq? Me, too.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Friday, December 12, 2008

Feliz Navidad

(Please stop reading now if you are neither Dash nor related to Dash. Trust me.)

The thing about Dash is that he doesn't really eat. (I have made a choice to freak out about this, but mainly internally.) He does, however, poop. He poops, like, three times a day. (I told you not to read this). But the poop-size so far has been about what you'd expect to come out of a Chihuahua. You know, totally manageable.

Except for just now. Just now he produced a turd like what you'd expect from a 300 lb. trucker. It was spectacular and totally revolting. But here is the awesome part: when Josh & I saw this thing and exclaimed! in shock! and awe! Dash just grinned and declared, "Feliz Navidad."

Feliz Navidad, indeed. Feliz Navidad, indeed.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

School Pictures

Can someone explain to me how they get the kids to pose like this? I can't get him to even look at the camera most of the time.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Although I love to cook and bake and make gifts from scratch, I do occasionally feel so completely overwhelmed and pressed for time that I need to find shortcuts.

I found out late last week that Dash's school will be hosting a sing & cookie swap next weekend. Because our schedule is already so completely packed, I started looking around for shortcuts. And I found one. A delicious one. That is easy, cheap & will keep for a week. Seriously, pay attention:

Buy a bag of good quality chocolate chips (I used semi-sweet, but whatever you like will do), a box of graham crackers & a few candy canes.

Send whatever husband or child you have on hand outside with the candy canes in a heavy duty freezer bag and instructions to pulverize.

Then melt the chips in a small saucepan over low heat. Once the chips are melted, dip the crackers, one at a time, into the goo. I used a small spoon to ensure coverage & to scrape off any excess chocolate.

Place the covered crackers on a wax paper-lined cookie sheet & sprinkle with crushed candy canes before the chocolate sets up.

Store in an airtight container. Or eat. Either way you're good.