Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Evening Run

These days, we're working on getting Jack totally and completely tired out before he goes to bed, in the hope of encouraging him to sleep past 6:00. (Times starting with a 5 -- or, worse yet, a 4 -- are just too cruel of a way to start the day.) We've had some success with this, but we haven't yet hit on the perfect formula. So, Margarita and both dads encourage the little guy to zip around as much as possible up until about 30 minutes before bedtime.

We shot this video while Mark was out of town and needing video greetings from home. Sorry for the cinema-verite quality of it. Even with Jack in it, it manages to have a bit of a "Blair Witch" feeling to it.


Jack continues to develop his skills with the straw and a cup of water.


Jack's deep fascination with cars continues in full force. There's nothing that brings a smile to his face -- or diverts attention from a gathering, two year-old tantrum -- faster or more effectively than a car, truck or tractor. Consequently, there are cars all over the house these days.

One of the funny little behaviors that's developed over the last month or so is his habit of painstakingly lining them up. They park in precise, straight lines along the edge of window sills, form linear slices across the middle of sofa cushions and travel in jaunty, but always neat, caravans across the kitchen table. A source of great comfort and satisfaction. The mind of a two year-old. A fascinating place.

The Ladybug Sweater!

We're so happy that the fantastic ladybug sweater that our good friend Rebecca knitted for Jack last year still fits! Even after a close call with the washing machine. Whew. In this picture, Jack's also sporting some ultra-cool, lined, Osh Kosh pants that Rebecca passed on to us as hand-me-downs. Quite the fashion plate, isn't he? Luckily, we have friends who are looking out for Jack's sartorial success.

Friday, March 11, 2011

One year and one day later...

I don't cry at random times as much.
I can go days without mistakenly thinking I should pick up the phone and check on her.
My conversations with Dad have a much different focus and much less intensity.
But every time Jack does something cute or wonderful or amazing or confusing, the emptiness rises up. I want to tell her about Jack. I want to marvel at him with her because her greatest gift and passion and fascination was with children. At it is in those moments that the absence, the incompleteness waves frantically at me: "She's not here, she's not here, she's not here."

I can't call her and say: "Jack can count to ten now, but he forgets 4 until the end, so he adds it on after ten. Did I do that? Do you remember when I learned to count."

I can't send her a video of him lining up his countless cars, end to end, perfectly aligned, with an engineer's precision, and not stopping to all is ordered and right in his universe. I don't have to ask her whether I did that as I am constitutionally certain that kind of order has never been important to me.

I can't wrap her up in my arms, kiss her soft cheek, hold her and hear her laugh and feel her strength and sweetness as she hugs me back.

I know I am supposed to focus on moving on, learned lessons and living each day in the present, yadiyadiyah.

Frankly, I am just not always able to do that. In fact, if she were here, she would be telling me just that: get on with life, take care of that baby, get to work. But sadly, she's not.

So Mom, I still miss you. I still think about you and am deeply sad that Jack will never know you the way that I did. He does say good night to you every night on our way upstairs to bed. We stop at your picture, he touches your cheek and says "g'night gramma." And I tell him every night that just after he falls asleep, you come down from heaven and kiss him on the cheek.

So I guess in that way he will know you.

Love Mark

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

No, I promise, I won't make you go in this time!

Note how tightly his little feet are wrapped around Daddy's waist. He's latched on like a mollusk!
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Ok, let's put our toes in the water...

One, two, three......
Hmmmm. Ok, we can try next time!
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Let's go for a walk on the sand and you will see how fun it is...

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I am your Daddy and I promise I will not let anything hurt you.

The waves are fun to play in. One day in the future, we will have to drag you OUT of the water, kicking and screaming because you want to stay in. So for now, you should not be afraid of the water.

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It's fine, Jack. Really.

You see, it's the ocean. It is fun, it is warm and it is full of fish and dolphins and sea horses. And you can play in the waves.

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Hmmmm, I am STILL not so sure about this sand stuff...

And that ocean looks awfully big. I think I will stay up here for now....

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Daddy, THERE is the plane that is taking us to Florida

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Jack is checking out his new backyard...

As with all construction projects, we still have miles to go before we sleep, but Jack seems pretty excited about the potential....

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