Somehow the weeks keep passing by; life move along swiftly and happily without us really noticing it.
We stay busy and enjoy our time together--and of course we take plenty of pictures.
Marcus is doing really well at school, at last. He loves the extra bike-riding recess you can earn by finishing the day on pink ("Outstanding!") on the behavior chart, and he seems to be making lots of friends. Case in point: we voted for Marty Walsh for Mayor of Boston, and then the next day at school dropoff another parent told Robert that she'd asked her kindergarten son (a classmate of Marcus's) who to vote for for Mayor. "Vote for Marcus!" he replied. Bewildered, we accepted it as a compliment. Meanwhile, kids in all different grades from our neighborhood know Marcus from the bus; the two days a week he takes it in, and the one day a week home, are possibly his most exciting moments. Daniel gives him a sticker and sea horse that grows in water, and we thank him; Alia gives him Nerds and hot Doritos, and we thank her (and avert our eyes from the horror of the junk food, in the interests of socialization). Samantha knows all the kids by name, too, and she calls across the street to them as we walk down the block and climb our separate front steps.
On weekends and days off, we've kept busy going to Clarinda's second birthday party, another family art day at the MFA, two of Lexi's team's hockey games (at Northeastern and BC), and the final few sessions of Samantha's art class.
One Saturday we met Ren and Matt and Amalia and Sabrina at Plimoth Plantation, where we all enjoyed a warm Fall weekend day.
Marcus and Amalia helped a woman grind and then sift corn, and they were fascinated by the styles of dress and speech. They asked a suitable amount of questions and found themselves questioned and interacted with in turn; several workers assumed they were brother and sister, telling Marcus to sit down on the stool by the fire and pull up one for his "sister." Amalia interrogated one man about the dinner he was eating, and Marcus told a woman that the fire felt good on his eyes and he'd just been too cold outside.
Samantha kept begging to hold "Molly-ma's" hand, and the little sisters joined in for some companionable walking up the hill at the end of the day.
We checked out the Mayflower II ship nearby, where a man told Marcus a long story involving rats, and got Marcus peering under the floorboards of the ship looking for more rats.
We ended the day at the Lobster Pot in Plymouth, eating lobster mac and cheese, stuffed quahogs, fried shrimp and lobster, and other seafood goodies. Marcus and Samantha fell immediately asleep in the car and slept all the way home, still sleeping as we stopped at WAN Convenience for one of Al's sandwiches (the Bob Marley) and then JP Lick's for a sundae to share.
On Sunday afternoon of Veterans' Day weekend, we had a kids' harvest party--some fall painting with pine cones and leaves up on the roof (a blustery cool day, but we made it work) to start, then a sweet potato "bar" for dinner (30 small roasted sweet potatoes with coconut curried spinach, beefy bean chili, cheese fondue, guacamole, salsa, homemade ranch dressing, and scallions and cilantro as toppings), lots of happy playing with train tracks and other toys, and then decorate-your-own gingerbread cookies in leaf, turkey, acorn, and apple shapes for dessert.
Samantha loved the painting, and Sarah sat up on the roof with her for half as hour as she carefully used her little foam brush back and forth, but some of the other kids weren't quite as into it. That was fine--they all made good-humored attempts, and then we came downstairs to get warm and eat.
I'd said in the invitation that kids could wear their costumes one last time if they felt like it, and that was actually a great solution to possibly getting paint and/or frosting all over their clothes, so most people did that. With funny little harvest-themed stampers and turkey finger puppet favors at the end, a party like this might just become an annual tradition on our part.
Sarah and Sean and Jef and Jin Yoon stayed later, and Samantha and Jaina and Marcus and Jayden played together really nicely, first with the little-kid toys up front and then with the little Legos and bigger-kid Playmobil in the hallway. Bonus: a penguin and an astronaut hand-in-hand, mean age of 2.1, is pretty adorable.
From left to right, this is a pumpkin-streusel bundt cake for an extra dessert; a plate of cookies I decorated before everyone arrived as inspiration, showing off the colors of frosting and types of decorations; and Robert and his little baby penguin at the end of the evening when everyone had left.
More movies from the past few weeks:
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Created: 11/11/13. Last Modified: 11/11/13.