Monday, December 31, 2007

A Promising Start To 2008

Our favorite channel, Noggin, converted today to a 24-hour, stand-alone format - no longer splitting the day with the older-skewing The N. So while we'll have to find a way to live without those endearing "good morning" and "good night" songs with the moose and his little owl friend every day at 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., we won't have to worry about something as innocuous as "Little Bear" or "Franklin" rolling into Will Smith or Degrassi.

There's some elaboration on the move here. The clock hasn't even struck midnight in the East and parents everywhere already have a reason to rejoice. Nice start to 2008, and welcome round-the-clock competition for our other favorite channel, PBS Kids Thirteen.

Now back to Wonder Pets...

2007 Rearview Mirror

We've gotten our fair share of holiday mail over the last few weeks, and it's always great to find one of those extended "family newsletter" write-ups inside a card - offering photos and some elaboration on what people have been up to. I've been thinking of doing a similar compilation for our family for the last few years and just have never gotten around to it.

But thanks to the wonders of Blogger, and the power of hyperlinks, I can take advantage of the fact that our year is basically already written up. So here - as I wander off to pursue carpal tunnel therapy after all the clicking and pasting required to produce the effort that appears below - was our 2007.

It was a great and active year during which...

We enjoyed another installment of the annual family vacation in Aruba

Madison didn't mind the gap

We welcomed a new school year

We happily closed a window

Ava turned 4 with Hello Kitty

Madison turned 6 with a trip to the Greatest Show on Earth

Madison left me a note

Ava honed her burgeoning sense of humor

We made quite a lot of sauce

Madison ditched the training wheels

Gwen and I took an amazing adults-only trip to Italy and missed the kids

Ava became unfortunately acquainted with something called a Nightstick Break (and recovered nicely)

We admired our (inherited) plants, and our lawn, and our plants again

We (adults in the house) said goodbye to Tony S.

We went to Vermont

And had such a great time we decided to go back

I surrendered my glasses to the New Jersey surf

Madison wondered when the Beatles would finally land on iTunes, and contemplated the iPhone hysteria

We continued to assess the merits of a pet cat

We took on Disney for the first time (and certainly not the last)

We won one blog competition

And got crushed in another

We ordered a healthy breakfast

Ava learned to swim

We trained for Disney by spending a day wandering around the Bronx Zoo

Ava finally made it out onto the soccer field

We went back and paid for a CD we had already downloaded for free

And, most recently, we participated in the nationwide sensation known as Hannah/Miley/Jonas

And we did it all together, which of course makes all the difference. Thanks to everyone for stopping by this little corner of the World Wide Web in 2007, and here's wishing you and yours a great 2008...

Saturday, December 29, 2007

If We Were A Movie

If We Were A Movie, we would have taken Madison and Ava to the Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus/Jonas Brothers concert last night. Nobody's Perfect, but luckily enough for the girls, That's Just The Way We Roll. To parents out there who may be considering a similar course of action, Hold On - especially when walking the little ones past the souvenir stand. And, to avoid a real-life S.O.S., bring earplugs. Not kidding about that, they are available at many fine drug stores, we had the most luck with this kind. Ava took in the entire event wearing these, which seemed to work very well for her smaller ears.

Make no mistake, this wasn't Radiohead or U2 - even Madison said she had a better time at a Marilyn Manson show we took her to last year - but from the standpoint of parental enjoyment Hannah/Miley/Jonas was light years ahead of The Wiggles, Barney and Dora Live.

We bought the girls Hannah T-Shirts and "Tour Books" on the way into the show, Madison had a momentary crisis on the way out of the arena when she noticed there were "Miley" shirts as well, which she didn't have, prompting Ava to warm our hearts by exclaiming, "Madison! They're the same person! Hannah is Miley! Miley is Hannah! They are the SAME!" Breakdown averted, thanks to our youngest, who turns 5 next month.

As is our wont, we took a few photos.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Summoning Her Inner Steinbrenner

Noticed this sign on Madison's door a few days ago.


Pet Club (and stuffed animals)
Boss Is Me

(Sign up sheet posted below, complete with door-mounted pencil. I do not recall throwing my name behind this effort, but I'm right there, listed as a member, next to Ava.)

And So This Is Christmas...

Parents understand.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

The Aftermath

From our family to yours, Merry Christmas.

[We will resume our light holiday-season publishing schedule later in the week.]

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Tony Would Be Proud

Running around getting ready for the day this morning, at one point I was sitting on the floor in our bedroom helping Madison put on her socks and sneakers, Ava standing nearby. There has been an resurgence of pet talk lately as some of the girls' associates have welcomed new four-legged friends into their homes.

Madison was explaining why a fish was not such a good option for us because it "doesn't do anything" but swim around in the tank. "Yeah, and you can't even hold it," Ava agreed, "you can't take it out of the water." The consensus - as always - seemed to be that a cat would be our best option, if I can find a way around my allergies or agree to hold my breath for the next 15 or so years

I decided to throw out a red herring:

"Hey, what about a rat?"

"Ugh," Ava said, her face crinkling up. "Disgusting."

"Yeah Dad," Madison agreed. "A rat is disgusting, we don't want a pet rat."

"And there's one other really bad thing about rats," offered Ava, our 4-year-old, who has never to our knowledge watched a mob-oriented drama or visited a betting parlor. "Rats are tattletales!"

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Getting Closer...

Note to Christmas-celebrating parents everywhere who find themselves in need of a novel and highly-effective seasonal disciplinary technique, don't forget there's always this.

At least for another 17 days...

Sunday, December 02, 2007

First White

So This Is What Happens...

So this is what happens to your monthly Web traffic when you:

A. Are included as one of ten finalists in the 2007 Weblog Awards (even though you wind up finishing a slightly demoralizing tenth).

B. Write something very nice and complimentary about Apple and Steve Jobs (which gets picked up and linked to by various Apple "fan" sites).

C. Have virtually no traffic to begin with.

D. All of the above.

(Hint: I'm going with "D")

Thanks everyone. Appreciate you stopping by.