Thursday, March 22, 2007

Echos of Springtime

For some years now, when the weather turns gentle and the word Springtime finds frequent utterance, this joyous poem by ee cummings begins to play with such giddiness through my mind and I begin to look forward to the changes (though I'm always sorry to leave mysweaters on the shelf and myscarves on the hooks and mycoat on the hanger.)

It's nice to be a child. I feel rememberance when thinking/reading this poem. I'm going to get mybabes a ballon next time they ask -- from one of those Dominican balloonpeople.

in Just-
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame balloonman

whistles far and wee

and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it's

when the world is puddle-wonderful

the queer
old balloonman whistles
far and wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing

from hop-scotch and jump-rope and




balloonMan whistles


Fair Weather Friend

The weather is teasing us, inviting us... here are some pics from our first venture out to the playground on a 60temp day (some days later it snowed -- see below).

While watching Zoe waddle about, it was amazing to think about the last time we were in the same playground, when she was immobile and on a blanket just 5 or six months ago. I began to look forward to long, glorious spring/summer/fall months of following her around the playgrounds and parks, watching her discover so many new things. But all those thoughts were a bit premature.

This was Zoe a few days later, bundled up due to a pretty big snowstorm. Getting around on these sidewalks turns me into a workhorse as I pull her behind me in the stroller and plow through the dirty snow, impossible street corner crossings and icy puddles. Fun.

This sad pic of myDes is also due to the snowstorm -- looks like he had a tussle with an angry snowbank. Actually, after coming into our building from marching around the day after the storm, he quickly slipped on the wet marble floor and his face landed on the first front step. PAIN! Poor boy. By the time we reached the elevator it was swollen to the size of a grape. So scary. We got upstairs and after 30minutes of agonizing cries (as I pressed a bag of frozen peas on his eye), he calmed down and actually hasn't mentioned it since. Childhood resilience... thank heavens!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Ruby's Birthday Party

Quick report on a little birthday party we attended acouple weeks ago -- I've got the pics so I should post them. Ruby turned four (she hand addressed her invitations!) Her clever theme was BluesClues. We arrived a little late, the partiers were intellectually engaged in peicing together the clues they had found (they all had handydandy notebooks!) It took Des a bit to warm up to everybody. When they had solved the clues (bowl, pasta, cheese = Mac-n-Cheese) all the party-goers swarmed around the food.
Where's Des?

Oh, over here on the couch.

Des finally got into it once the dancing game started and, actually, so did Zoe!

For more excitement, here are the photos

Here's some footage of discovering a clue (to the PiƱata!)

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Prolonged Hybernation

Ahhh.... It's still cold!! We are really feeling the need for just a little more s-u-n-s-h-i-n-e! I don't need much as I do actually enjoy winter. But friged temps have been prolonged and I'm gettin' a little nuts! We want to get back to our parks -- those glorious afternoons roaming and running and soaking up the free spaces in this city. Had flashbacks today about March 2006 (during those terrifying new-mommy-of-two months) how crazy DPJ seemed and how hard it was to deal with him. Now that I have a little more presence of mind, I can see he was partly reacting to those long, cold indoor days. He's been exhibiting a bit of that loony, frenzied misbehavior and Nate and I are very glad we're a bit more experienced to handle it all. Last year it was all quite frightening for me.

I'm already planning our first warm day: it's gotta be an early morning, grab some apples&bread and head up to 207th and Seaman, enter the park, find a path and loose ourselves among the trees. Walk and skip and run (Zoe too!) climb up the hills a little, find some rocks to scale. Back on the path and follow till it opens up again at the soccer field. Run and roll around on the grass, make our way to the waters edge and throw crumbs to the ducks. Find a good climbing tree, take pictures. Walk across the bridge over to the peninsula and find that great long bench at the tip and watch the trains (thinking about how much we miss the Addams!)

That will be my first warm weather day with my lovelybabes.

I've already planned our first warm weather evening -- Isham Park with the Fugals. Picnic dinner on blankets, let the boys run and chase. Watch our grown little daughters waddle off, picking up twigs and chomping down on them. Talk adult talk, debate adult topics (and enjoy laughing at Nathan and Jayson).

Meanwhile, here are some suggestions by Desi and Zoe of some of our indoor pastimes you can try to chase away the Winter in March blues.

Help out with the grocery shopping and try to take a few bites before things are put away.

Play with toys -- over and over and over again.

Change diapers at least 4-times a day.

Minature golf in the living room.

General acts of distruction.

Pose for the camera.



Mix things up a bit.


Play dress up.

Try out your brothers boots.

Make smoothies and relish in the thick creamy milk-mustaches.

Here are some more pics from February.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

International Women's Day

I don't blog very often about the United Nations and all that I'm privileged to witness here. With the likelihood of our removal from New York sometime this year, I've had an urgent feeling to really mark this time and watch it closely.

Due to the Commission on the Status of Women, the UN has been flooded over the last 2-weeks with women from all over the world gathering to address our common challenges and to find solutions. Women helping women. Love that. This year they are addressing discrimination and violence.

And today is International Women's Day. During a session this week it was noted that one of the events leading to the creation of the International Women’s Day had been the “Triangle Fire” (1911) in New York City’s Union Square. The fire had taken the lives of more than 140 girls, textile workers, who were burned to death because of the factory’s locked doors. New York and the Nation were outraged and a unified workers movement commenced resulting in the passing of 36 new labor laws.

This years theme for the International Women's Day is "Ending Impunity for Violence against Women and Girls". Some things I've been learning about is how the international community needs to support indictments that hold people accountable. Lots of pressure is being exerted by women’s groups and peer groups to make legislation on violence against women universal, and countries are responding swiftly. Five years ago, only half the number of UN Member States had even dealt with such legislation. There is a growing movement, but it did needs to be mobilized and as we've learned through so many conflicts throughout the world, it's imperative to get regional groups engaged. It's great to see that both the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the African Union have made this issue critical.

Here's the new Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon's, message regarding IWD. Some highlights are:

Worst of all, violence against women and girls continues unabated in every continent, country and culture. It takes a devastating toll on women's lives, on their families, and on society as a whole. Most societies prohibit such violence -- yet the reality is that too often, it is covered up or tacitly condoned.

That is why International Women’s Day is so important. It spells out our responsibility to work for enduring change in values and attitudes. It calls on us to work in partnership -- Governments, international organizations, civil society and the private sector. It urges us to work for a transformation in relations between women and men, at all levels of society. It compels us to strengthen every means of empowering women and girls -- from education to microcredit.

So, I've been thinking about the women in my life, and those I've observed, and wondering if it would be too cheesy to list some of the people who I admire or who have really influenced me.... hmmmm... maybe so. Suffice it to say, that through my experiences, I feel I've developed a unique admiration, gratitude, and sympathy for women. I celebrate women and I'm regularly overwhelmed and grateful for their contributions. I think the unique element of my experence comes from my religion. I am constantly, and even recently humbled, by the women I've known in the church who seek daily to improve themselves and understand their potential as daughters of God. Women who are hopeful and faithful and who share so much with others; women who show courage when challenged and restraint in critizising others.
I am very grateful this day for Gods creation of women and the distinctive good they do in the world.
Thank you mom. :)

Friday, March 02, 2007

Desi Candor IIV

If I fall down and break my head mommy, will you have to find another little boy to be her Desi?

I’m a rectangle cereal eater.

That kind of hurt but I didn’t cry.

After smelling Zoe’s head he said, “it smells like mousaka!”

Des was mumbling one day, “I want Shelly, I want Shelly.” I finally asked him who Shelly was and he replied, “My penpal from the mainland”.

Hey Mr. Lady!

“I know how Zoe feels.” Zoe was crying after falling down.

“Are you trying to make me laugh?” (to Zoe)

Lets Celebrate this great big mess!

I had a bad dream about that rice bowl again mommy and I had a taste of it with beans and it was so yummy.

Are you going to put milk in here? Or are you pretending? (He'd asked me a few minutes before to please get him some more milk, but I wasn't moving fast enough!)

Don’t be mad at her mommy, just be… sorry for being mad at her.

Thank you for my joys! This milk is so good!

“Something in my heal is hurting.” I suggested he brush it off. “No, I scratch it but it keeps coming back. It likes me.”

During dinner one night, I was telling Des a bit about the opera Nate&I saw recently. I mentioned that it was a sad story and he replied, “I have a sad story: my rootbeer is gone!” Pizza without rootbeer is his idea of a tragedy.

I hurt myself all by myself.

While rubbing Zoe’s head, “She’s a cutie baby and I love her.”

I’ll give you a little something, it’s called a snack.

I nose bonked Zoe. We're nose-peckers

"I speak Tashi. You know what Tashi means mom?" I say, "Nope". Des explains, "Its means 'run in place'"

I wish I was a girl and could wear earrings.

You're a great mom and I love you!

What happened to my pingpong ball? Oh! Here it is! (Throws his arms around Zoe's head)

We bonked heads like deer. Opps!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Some Desi Highlights

Desi loves "art projects" he's recently established an art hat which he likes to wear when he's painting -- shown here painting pictures for his Gma's bdays, both of which are in February. I suppose I better get them in the mail!

He's been a bit more persuasive lately in trying out photography -- its hard for me to surrender my camera, I love it so! (thanks mom&dad) but in the interest of good parenting I've let him, under heavily guided sessions, snap away. Here are some of his first photos:

Zoe caught mouthing off (my mexican keychain!)
A good angle of my scarf collection
uhhh... a fair angle of me
Caught in the frame!
Later Des can apprentice with his Grandfather -- the ultimate autodidact photographer.
Here are some pics taken along with these from the month of January. I'm such a tardy blogger!