Saturday, November 29, 2008

Black Friday

Our Black Friday purchase was a fresh cut Christmas tree. We have plans to be out of town for the holidays this year and want to enjoy our tree while we can. Today was the day. We traveled over the mighty Hudson River to a lovely tree farm for the afternoon.

Hugo snoozed as we made our river crossing.

Arriving at the farm found our tummies rumbling and our Hugo still snoozing. We ate lunch inside the truck while watching families carefully choose trees and children play games of football between lanes of parked cars. It was surprising to find so many other families choosing their trees today. It was also surprising to see so many grills being fired up. Cesar said that next year - we are grilling. I think our grill is kinda large to haul across the river. He doesn't agree.

Cesar chuckled at all the folks who rented their saws.

Hugo is still crazy for his beanut butter & jelly sandwiches. Can you see the beanut butter on his cheeks? I sure can. I can almost smell it too!

Cesar had a little trouble starting up his chain saw. Plus I was having a little trouble deciding on a tree. I fell for a short, squat blue spruce which is a very different choice for me. I was nervous all my ornaments wouldn't fit so Hugo and I left Cesar with his chain saw troubles for a minute.

Momentarily distracted by this beautiful stone wall, I placed Hugo on top and stepped back for a pic. Hugo didn't want to sit on the wall. Wanting to distract a grumpy Hugo, I made a big production of waving my arms and sucking in my breath to tell him that I thought Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer might be in the red barn below. Hugo was *very* excited. We have been practicing his song you see. Rudolph's song or Ruoouoouooalf as Hugo calls him.

Then I told Hugo that Santa might also be in the red barn.
He wasn't so sure about this Santa character.

About the time Cesar got the chain saw started up, Hugo and I spotted a new tree.

Here is Cesar giving me instructions on how I'm supposed to grab hold of the top of the tree and pull it slightly toward me as he cuts the trunk. I did as I was told and he cut as he said he would and boy did I get a surprise! Our beautiful Christmas tree had actual needles for needles! If he hadn't cut the trunk before/as I touched those needles I would have chosen a different tree because the needles are unbelievably sharp! I've never met a tree like this before.

Normally we would haul the tree together. Cesar carries the trunk and I grab hold near the top and down we walk together to the truck. Not this year. Cesar was kind and dragged the prickly beast to the truck all on his own.

Here Hugo and I were running to keep up with Papa. Well, Hugo was running and I was slip sliding down the path. I had worn my green garden clogs which have zero traction, to clear all the puddles and muck. If I had been holding onto that tree while Cesar hauled it on down the hillside I would have spent half the trip on my keester! So Cesar hauled, Hugo ran and I sorta skiied my way down the hill.

This is the Hudson once more.

These are our mountains.

A happy Hugo and a peek at our Christmas tree out the back window.

The End.

Friday, November 28, 2008


I like brussels sprouts.

I am grateful this Thanksgiving holiday for a full pantry.

We received some yummy gifts from an actor on Cesar's show.

I am grateful for the blessings of friendship in our lives. It makes me happy to watch Cesar interact with his friends. They call and he laughs. He uses a voice and phrases reserved only for these men. Hugo and his friends crack me up as they play. One minute they love each other and hug and kiss and chase each other around. Then in a blink of an eye, someone will be crying their eyes out, kicking and screaming on the floor!

I am grateful for the friendships I have with my sisters. I am grateful for my friends who live far and are a part of the memories of my youth. I am grateful for friends nearby who bless me and my family with their kindness, their love, service and their ears! I am also grateful for the new connections forming here through blogging. This is a big, unexpected surprise to me.

I baked banana bread and pumpkin pie the night before. I left the pie on the counter to cool.

As I prepared breakfast for us, Hugo stuck his finger in the pumpkin pie.

He said, "UmmMMmmm, Yummy!!"
I moved the pie to the fridge.

I am very grateful to have Hugo in my life. He is a source of daily joy.

The small spread for our little family.

Family. I am so happy that I can type the word family here. For so many years we didn't have Hugo in our lives and I felt funny calling the two of us, Cesar and I, a family. I mean, I knew that we were, but... I came from a family of seven children, that is a family. I am grateful that Cesar is my husband. I know he loves me and that he is crazy about our little boy. I am so very grateful that we have these wonderful, lazy, holiday days together to relax and fill our bellies and laugh and walk about outside and simply be with one another.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Shadow Shot Sunday #6

This past week my evenings were spent trying to organize our photo files. That is one big, time consuming job. Discovery of some fun shadow shots from this past summer occurred. The forgotten moments made me smile and want to share with all you shadow seekers!

Join in the shadow shot fun, visit Hey Harriet for details.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Yellow Leaves

Yellow leaves, yellow leaves.
My yard is full of yellow leaves.
I find them to be beautiful.
Yellow leaves, yellow leaves.
I don't have much else to say.
Yellow leaves, yellow leaves.
My yard is full of yellowing, dried up leaves.

Hugo's Jobs

Hugo has surprised me with random gifts of a made bed without any prompting from me. Yes. You read that correctly. Our son Hugo has been making his own bed. How awesome is that?! No tucking of sheets or fluffing of his pillows has taken place. He simply pulls his down comforter up and over his sleep flattened pillow. Sometimes he even smooths out his crib quilt on top of the comforter. He is copying me. Hugo made his bed.

This bed making got me thinking. Hmmmmm. What else can Mr Hugo do??? He puts his dirty clothes in the basket in our room. Check. He tosses his stinky diapers in the bathroom trash. Check. Now he has made his bed, so I suppose chores, toddler chores, are next. I got the idea for the design of the job chart from my sister Millie. She made something similar a year or so ago for her kids. She made them a checkout system for their toys with velcro and pockets and I wanted one. Very cool Millie. Anyway, I ran around one morning taking pictures of Hugo's things and what I know he is capable of doing. Good basics in his future home keeping skills here we come.

Big trucks get tucked under his bed.

Train tracks are stacked in their drawer.

Dirty clothes basket.

Brush teeth.

Books on their shelves and puzzle cars in their place.

Bowling penguins, cars and animals asleep in their drawers.

Where are the astronauts Hugo?

Does the frog thingy have all his eyes?

Hugo's bed.

Hugo likes to hold his new laminated job chart in one hand and points to the words with his other hand and says - Hugo's Jobs. This afternoon I asked him his name and he pointed to his chest and said - Hugo's Jobs. We have chores of all sorts ahead of us.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

My Floppy Hat

I held a little ole photo shoot with my new hat the other morning. Do you think it looks rather large and loose? Well, that is just how I planned it. I never wore a hat past the 6th grade until my husband moved me to NYC. The whistling, whirling and bone chilling City wind converted me into a hat wearer in mere minutes. My vain streak wouldn't allow a hat anywhere near my head before then. I just hated all the static and the hair flattening. Vain, vain, vain and silly. So vain little ole me likes hats that are large and loose to cover my ears, hold the heat in and will hopefully not plaster my hair to my forehead.

Vain = Moi reminds me of how I barely ever wore socks in High School. I can remember arguing with my Mother after early morning seminary one day about how she wanted me to march back upstairs and put some socks on my feet. To defend my mother here, we were in Wisconsin with two feet of snow on the ground, below zero temps, and I was about to walk with my girlfriend Stacy the two blocks over to school through the snowy sidewalks. I looked my Mom straight in the eye and... refused. She told me I wasn't going anywhere until socks were covering my feet, end of story. Fine - I snapped as I stomped loudly back up the stairs in my oh so cool pegged jeans and white plasticy flats to my room. I didn't go to school that day.

There was one hat in my past which I adored. It was a triangular shaped, crocheted hat I wore during my elementary school days in California. My Great Aunt Lucy and her friends Helen and Madge would send us a huge box filled with knitted and crocheted items each year. There were lots of hats, mittens, scarves and even sweaters in the winter box for my brothers and sisters and I to paw over. These ladies lived in Wisconsin and they knew cold. So, their winter box was always lovingly filled with multiples of each item. All we had to do each year was trace our hands for them on paper and Mom would send these tracings off to Wisconsin for us. What I remember most from those shipments of warmth we were so lucky to receive, was the triangle hat. My sister Maggie and I wore those hats everywhere. I think we wore them to death because no trace of them can be found. They tied into a bow under our chins, covered our ears and hanging from the point in the back. were a bunch of crocheted curly cue, ringlets. I loved that hat. I felt like a princess wearing it as I ran up and down our hill, crashing about the redwoods with those crocheted ringlets bouncing and swaying from side to side.

Last year I struggled and struggled with my much beloved lavender beret which I had been wearing as my main hat for years. Cesar washed and dried it one day by mistake and the cashmere shrunk to the point that it didn't look very nice on me anymore. I didn't cover my ears anymore. I washed it and soaked it and tried my very best to stretch the fibers once more. No use. I still loved it. I kept trying to wear it. I held onto it thinking one day it would magicly grow or maybe my head would shrink and it would fit me perfectly again. I had high hopes. Last spring my niece Sofia came for a visit. She didn't have a hat. It was a windy spring here in our parts. I turned my lovely lavender beret over to her. A perfect fit.

For my new hat I chose this dark purple cashmere from School Products in the City. I began with a knitted i-cord border and picked up stitches around for the body of the hat. I also knitted eyelets up one side and partially down the other in which to thread a long tail of knitted i-cord. The knitted fabric was then cinched together a bit with the decorative braid of i-cord X's and there was just enough of the cashmere cord left over for a bow at the brim.

Monday, November 17, 2008

My Blog Content

Cesar recently got on my case about my home keeping duties. He wasn't happy. He wants me to work 16 hours a day like he does. He wondered why I don't photograph the top of my dressing table and share it here on the blog. I must admit the top of my dressing table truly is a dumping ground. Awhile back I loaded it with photo frames thinking I wouldn't be able to dump there anymore but... that hasn't stopped me. I'm not sure why I do it. Well, that is not entirely true. I believe my hording/stacking tendencies are inherited genes from both my parents.

My response to Cesar was that the blog highlights all my happiness throughout the day. Each day with Hugo truly is a treat. He is always doing something I find endearing or funny or something which simply blows me away! Like - How did he do that? or When did he figure that out? Amazing I tell you, amazing. I don't want to forget. I don't want to not remember or to not have a place in which I can turn to so I may remind myself of this fleeting, precious time. I so, so wish that I had blogged or journaled during Hugo's first year of life. I didn't, so sad! Cleaning happens all the time, all day long, all year long, all my life long, most likely all eternity long in some shape or another.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Shadow Shot Sunday #5

This is... well hold on a second. You wanna take a shadow guess?

This is how my shower curtain looks in the late afternoon this time of year.

Please visit Hey Harriet for more shadow shot viewing.

Busy, Odd, Slow, Strange, Long Week

Monday was my Momma's Birthday!
This pic was taken in Central Park in May 2005.

Tuesday we had an afternoon visit with a favorite friend.

Hooray! for the last of the seasons dandelions.

Wednesday, three trucks loads of wood were delivered.

Plus, our friend Taylor came for a three day sleep over visit and crochet lesson.
Hugo was in heaven with a friend in the house.

He had a major meltdown
as we dropped Miss Taylor off for school in the morning
and he couldn't follow her inside.

In time sweet boy, in time.

Thursday I had fun painting some Christmas balls.

Hugo had fun getting into this and...

Doing this.

He also painted circles on my bedspread (on Poppa's watch) but I didn't have it in me to take pictures of this newest installment of Hugo Art. I didn't mind the sewing machine cover so much. Actually thought I'd leave it as proof for one day when he is older. Thought we could laugh together about his finger painting adventures. I wasn't laughing as I soaked and soaked my bedspread. Hugo was in Big Smoke Trouble on Thursday.

Friday we stacked wood.

We waited up on our hill for Poppa to come home from his dental appointment. We watched all sorts of cars and trucks travel past. We talked about their colors.

Hugo turned my legs into a tunnel he could travel into and out of.

I also received lots of kisses on my knees.

Bella is funny looking from this angle!

Poppa finally arrived.

Together, we three, stacked more wood.

Saturday. On Saturday, I wore some new shoes.

The End.