The End of Summer

Samantha (26", 17lbs 9 oz) has been cruising like mad, as well as becoming very oral--everything goes in her mouth, from woodchips at the playground to my shopping list, after she grabs it away from Marcus, to food, of course. She is a fan of avocado on toast, roast chicken, salty-herbed feta squeezed out of a phyllo cigarillo, and just about everything else she's tried. Meanwhile, Marcus is tall and leggy (40", 34.5lbs, 31st percentile for his age and sex for BMI) and independent but also cuddly and still a kid. We enjoyed having this summer together so much, since now he's in "big school" full-time. Here, then, are some pictures from the last few weeks of summer.

Alex's 5th birthday party was at the Frog Pond one Saturday afternoon. The favors were cool mini-sets of Playmobil Olympic figures--Marcus got a volleyball set, which he really likes (he's actually playing with it at home now while I type) but, oddly, what he really loves is the Playmobil catalog that came in the box. He carries it around with him in his pocket and calls it his "bad-guy book," since he seems to think some of the displays of castles are a bit dark and scary, and yells, "NOOOOO, Samantha shouldn't look at the bad guy pages, they're not okay for babies!" if she approaches him while he's "reading" his book to a doll. At the party he "read" the book to Alex and a random girl who added herself on to our party. Samantha, on the other hand, would have been perfectly happy to play with Alex's new sparkly pink baton for the entire time.

We are still very much a public-transit family (still car-free), and we took the train or bus multiple times a day this summer. File these under "sites seen on the subway": Hipster Marcus taking the elevator because "Fifi" didn't want to be bounced down the stairs, and a random woman holding a very large dog. We just stared. In retrospect, we should have approached and had our pictures taken together.

On one of the last Thursdays in August, the Science Museum did a reptile show on the Boston Common, while on a Saturday visit to the Children's Museum, Marcus made sure to wear his "unstruction" helmet when building houses. He also now routinely climbs to the top of this webbing structure at the Stonybrook playground.

All three of us enjoyed an interactive concert with the Community Music School of Boston in the library courtyard one day.

Marcus has discovered the joys of dressing up, here emerging from his room as a roaring pirate monkey who completely terrified Samantha. (Incidentally, at the right of this picture you see the great clothes organizer Grandma and Pop-pop helped me make and hang, so Marcus can get out his clothes for every day of the week.)

We had lots of bike rides around the South End, many visits to our local lion a few blocks down the street, and many visits to our local playground.

Meanwhile, at home, Samantha loves books--to eat!--loves any toy of Marcus's (second from right, she's clutching a Magna-tile), and still is a great sleeper.

This series was taken one day in our bedroom when Marcus was playing with Mr. Potato Head: Marcus wore the glasses, as he always does; Samantha crawled up; Marcus put the glasses on her; since she adores anything he does, she obliged with a smile.

Meals are a lot of fun these days, although a bit messy. Pasta Samantha could take or leave, but tomato sauce, by the spoonful (or fist-full) she loved. Ditto beef kofte kebobs and grilled summer squash. Even when I made Tim-Tam truffles from the cookies Robert brought back from Australia, Samantha thought they were for her--she reached for them happily and looked crestfallen when we did not comply. (The truffle pops were actually meant for Bob's birthday-and-start-of-seminary party.)

"The word of the Lord is alive and active, sharper than a double-edged sword" was Marcus's memory verse one week at Children's Church. Clearly, then, the kids had to leave wielding large (proportionately) foam swords they made and decorated themselves. So much for not having toy weapons in the house.

With September upon us, we filled in the final days of summer with another trip to the zoo,

a visit to the great sand-and-water playground in Cambridge (with some ice cream in Harvard Square at Lizzy's),

a morning at the "Little Bookworms" animal-themed storyhour with face-painting and a bunny visit at the local MSPCA,

some great end-of-summer grilling,

and some much-needed rest.

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Created: 9/10/12. Last Modified: 9/10/12.