It's been a busy but happy fall. The kids are all thriving--Marcus in 9th grade (class IV) at BLS, Samantha in 5th and Helen in 1st at JQES. Helen does dance on Saturday mornings (hip-hop, ballet, and tap) and also soccer (though that's on hiatus for the winter) and the church choir and Sunday school on Sundays and piano lessons Sunday afternoons. She also did an afterschool geared toward storyboarding and illustrating a book, and she loved that. Samantha does Girl Scouts with a new-to-her troop, and is enjoying the activities. She's a junior or a cadette, depending on who you ask. All three kids are still playing in orchestras (cello, cello, violin). Here are some pictures of activities and fun, from when we got home from Minnesota on Labor Day weekend until school break for Christmas holidays.
Rainy Labor Day bowling and ice cream at Ron's in Hyde Park:
First day of school pics!
The Bikes Not Bombs bikeathon! Helen rode by herself for the first year. Despite a little rain in the middle, we had a great time. Marcus was out at a friend's house in the Berkshires for the weekend, though, and sadly missed.
The Stonybrook after-party (with burritos and salads and JP Honk) was as good as ever.
Dinner downtown, and then a BU tour day, with lovely Z.!
Assorted other BU work/social events--Tri-Alpha induction ceremony, and "English" at the Calderwood with fellow faculty and some students.
Dim sum for 12. Yes, please.
A visit from Cori--she's moving to Boston in January, so we get to see a lot more of her!
King Tut at SOWA.
Neighbor playtime is all the time--including bouncy house fun, various different costumes (Kiki and a ninja playing soccer--why not?), assorted fruit parties on the back porch, and a giant unwrapping of leftover Halloween candy so I could chop it up and use it in baking.
Assorted commuting moments:
Warm fall weekend trip to the grand opening of a new boba place close to us. We got their bubble waffles too, just for science.
Apple picking adventures. First time for Yousra!
Grand opening of the new Beacon Hill Books bookstore! Helen loved the kid-sized door and furniture upstairs.
Plenty of downtime at home, too:
Board game night with old old friends, and now the next generation.
Boston Common Fall o'ween celebration with friends from school
Boston Nature Center pumpkin carving event with a nature walk/story walk.
A visit from my cousin from Texas.
School Halloween party. Yes, there were three Kikis. Helen was over the moon. Samantha's friends had a slightly different aesthetic going on, on the other hand....
Wacky neighborhood fun day: prizes and things at Boing, dog costume parade, and JP Licks outing.
Halloween costume party.
Fall playground fun
A trip to Chinatown and the Pao Arts Center with some of my students
Turkish folk dance lessons.
Girls' Day at the newly-reopened MIT Museum--lots of fun! Followed by fancy Chinese in Kendall Square, while we were over that way anyway.
A too-short weekend visit from Robert's sister Amanda and her three kids. We managed to squeeze in a trip to the Super 88 foodcourt for Korean corndogs, mochi donuts, and lots of dumplings, plus a grand opening weekend of the new playground at Government Center, plus two extra helpers in Sunday School with me. Oh, and a family dinner at home and some video games and a bike ride.
An international houseful of guests for Thanksgiving. We smoked a Stillman's heritage turkey in the back yard in the new electric smoker I got Robert as an early Christmas present, and Sean cooked a halal turkey (Restaurant Depot, baby!) at his house and brought it over. We had people from BU and from Robert's office as well as family and friends, and it was a really lovely day.
Post-Thanksgiving brunch with Anya and Anand. Not pictured: lots of piano fun for Anand and Helen, who pretty much never wanted it to end.
Roslindale tree lighting and then dinner at Sarah's--second turkey dinner plus things from Shakin' Seafood, with special Canadian guests Debbie and Chris, and a giant friendly video game evening plus the "bowl game."
Quincy Christmas parade to cap off the Thanksgiving Day weekend and start us in the Christmas swing of things. We had to get some special mochi and some individual hot pot noodles before, of course.
Samantha's troop had an outing to go see the new "Black Panther" movie. We of course discussed the Bechdel test, cultural appropriation in many superhero movies, and the bridge scene filmed on the MIT bridge.
Bittersweet last day of the afterschool--triumphant book "publishing" day and cupcakes and a ride home with a friend, but sad not to see Julia and the other Harvard students weekly anymore.
Cold weather biking. We still do it.
Evie's 5th birthday party, at the Rozzie Square Theatre. I wonder if anyone could possibly guess the theme....
Tree decorating, companionably.
Wreath-making class at Create in Roslindale with Sarah, Meg, and Samantha. We all met for sushi first, and then Sean took the three little girls to an organ concert and Christmas carol singalong at a nearby church while we made wreaths. It was a great evening, even though Samantha was critical of my "weird" wreath ("You just, like, wrapped rope around it, Mom!" she said, among other things).
Making Christmas cards, and enjoying a little pre-Christmas snow on the last day of my semester.
Birthday celebrations for Samantha. A new Pride flag, a new giant green beanbag, some squishmallows, cool balloons, and cake.
Birthday sleepover for Samantha, with ice sculptures at Downtown Crossing at the end of it just by chance.
Samantha's first Girl Scout cookie booth of the season, in Bay Bay Station, while Helen and I went to a lovely wedding for a young couple from church and Helen endlessly discussed the dresses and flowers and vows.
Children's Choir singing in church. Helen was thrilled.
Ice skating outing at Walter Brown Arena with my department.
Nutcracker/Chanukah celebration with Sarah, Sean, and Evie--Robert, Sarah, and Sean took the little girls to see the Tony Williams Urban Nutcracker at 1:00, which was cool because Helen has three teachers or assistant teachers in it. She was on the edge of her seat watching. Then they came back to our house and we played dreidel, exchanged gifts, and ate latkes and sufganiyot and this fabulous menorah sushi platter from the Butcherie. Afterward, Samantha went back to see the 5:30 show with her Girl Scout troop, and one of her fellow troop members was in it as well.
Snowflake Extravaganza in school--Helen's class sang "Light a Little Candle," a Hebrew song for Chanukah, and "Elfie Selfie," the house favorite.
Early Christmas celebration with Grandma and Pop-pop for gift exchange and gingerbread tree
Go back to web essays.