Move Over Mary Poppins!

The real life adventures of one nanny, her husband, child, dogs, house, and whatever else crosses her path.

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Location: MA, United States

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Ben Folds Fakes

Last night, Mark and I left Felix with my mom for the evening and went out! Together! Just us! So very rare.

We had supper at Bin 26 Enoteca on Charles Street, and let me tell you, it was yum! I had a really interesting sauvignon blanc, made by this hippy winemaker from Northern California, who lets his wines be free, no interference from him, and the results in this case were pretty cool. It had the nose of a traditional sauvignon blanc, all crisp and citrusy, but the finish was nutty, almost toasty.

I had marinated anchovies, tapas style, followed by a stacked "salad" of Belgian endive and roasted red and golden beets, and then a tapas style plate of saffron suppli with Fontina. Mark had a roasted duck carpaccio, summer vegetable gazpacho (one of the best examples of the cold, Spanish soup favorite I've had in recent memory - because of course I stole tasted a little), and a hangar steak with sauteed chard that was delish! melty and well sauced. We had to skip dessert, which was too bad, but we'd already decided to skip the opening act at the Ben Folds show at the Orpheum in favor of dinner, and we didn't want to miss the man himself.

The show was great. That man can rock a piano! I've only seen him once before, opening for Tori Amos at Harborlights a bunch of years back, and that opening act was so good, we were actually kind of disappointed with Tori. This show didn't disappoint, with one tiny exception. His new album is being released on Tuesday, and since the show was technically a promotion of the new material, the first hour was all stuff no one knew. That said, the new material is worthy of a listen.

Apparently, an extire fake album, using the actual song titles, with "fake versions" was recorded, marketed and leaked, as a practical joke to the music industry, and so for every second song he played, he also played a "fake version" of it, which required some explanation on the part of Mr. Folds. In one or two cases, I actually liked the fakes better....

The encore was a half a dozen tracks of "old shit," to quote Ben, including Army, to the delight of the crowd, and the whole show wrapped up before eleven (ensuring that the parents at the show could get home to their sitters.... )

And the cherry on top of our sundae of a Friday was coming home to a sleeping baby who'd eaten a good dinner and been sweet for his Gramma, a sleeping baby who stayed that way all night!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

How Many?

I had lunch with a dear friend today, in a rare moment when the life of a nanny/mother of four and a 3rd year law student with two jobs and a marriage of his own intersect.

I was telling the kids about my afternoon, and Miss E wondered how I knew him. I explained that we'd met in high school... in September of 1991.

E said, "Wow, that's a really long time ago."
I said, "Yeah, seventeen years."

Seventeen years?

After that, I just laid my head on the dinner table and was simultaneously very grateful for friendships that survive that long, and mourning my now hopelessly lost youth.


Women Do A Lot in a Day

Bonnie Hunt said that on her talk show this morning. I like her. I DVRed it. So shoot me.

It's true. Not that men don't. Not that all women do, either. This isn't about gender. Really. It's about me.

Here's my yesterday:

5:20AM: wake up, nurse baby, doze in bed with baby until alarm goes off
6:15: get up, wash, brush, moisturize, dress, dress baby, crate retriever, and leave for work at
7:00: commute 23 miles to parking garage in Beacon Hill
7:55: lock car, walk approx. 6 blocks to work
8:00: set Felix up with toys, make breakfast for Felix and me, get Felix and O pottied, fed, dressed before playdate
10:15: leave for playground
10:30: arrive at playground. Everyone else is late...
11:20: Depart playground, walk to car parked a half mile away
11:35: pull out of parking space, both boys and the stroller safely stowed
12:00PM: sit in carpool line at big kids' school in Chestnut Hill
12:10: big kids pile into car, we leave for Finagle A Bagel to grab lunch
12:35: Bagels in hand, head back to Beacon Hill
1:05: park car near preschool, run O inside 20 minutes late
1:15: park car, walk up the street to the house, squeeze in a rest, a snack, and some playtime for Felix
3:00: walk back to car to bring E to Newton for dance class
3:25: arrive at dance studio, get E's shoes adjusted before class
3:35: leave for Beacon Hill to pick O up at preschool
4:00: take O for ice cream before picking up infant Motrin and leaving again for Newton
5:10: after fighting rush hour traffic, get E from dance, get back in the car
5:20: leave for Beacon Hill
6:10: park the car, go inside, make dinner and tidy up, load dishwasher and start laundry
7:10: pack out of Beacon Hill
7:20: leave parking garage, drive 23 miles home
8:00: deposit Felix with Mark while I make dinner
8:20: shovel dinner in while watching DVRed The Soup
8:50: take Felix upstairs for jammies, stories, nursing and bed
9:25: wash, brush, jammy and fall into bed
10:00: lights out!


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Cemeteries of Dutchess County

In 1993, my Great Grandmother Wiggers passed away. She lived her whole life in the vicinity of Poughkeepsie, NY, most of that as the wife and widow of a toy shop owner. Her whole life until she got too frail to care for herself, and my mother arranged for her to come live with us. In retrospect, leaving Dutchess County probably broke her heart - she only survived central Massachusetts for a year or so before passing on, but at sixteen I didn't fully grasp the sheer hugeness of packing in and leaving your home of ninety-some years. Sure, she lived in more houses in those years than anyone can actually remember, but they were all within about a half hour's drive of one another.

She was interred next to her husband, on a hillside in a small cemetery in Clinton Corner, NY. I remember being there for the burial, and seeing long lost family members I barely knew. What else to do when a burial turns into a family reunion? Take lots of pictures. Pictures of family groups, pictures of headstones with family names on them; there's nothing like a roll of film shot in cemetery to earn a teen odd looks at the CVS 1-Hour counter...

Anyway, my mom and I are trying to compile and edit as much of our family tree as we can, including tracking down information that has been handed down through other branches of her parents' families. We've been investigating the internets all summer, but last month I had some vacation time, so we packed Felix in the car and headed back to Dutchess County to scope out cemeteries that might contain names and dates of family. We had some lists and some letters from cemetery offices and some tips from relatives, and that was all my mom needed to make a plan!

We struck out Monday morning, headed for Poughkeepsie, via my Grammie's houses in Clinton Corner and Poughkeepsie, and along the way we found two cemeteries with good potential for information. The easiest way to gather it? Digital camera, of course!

Grammie's little house in Clinton Corner is much as it was, with a fresh coat of paint. The house my grandmother grew up in is still there, and for sale! My great grandfather's eponymous toy store, however, has been torn down in favor of a soulless office building on the main drag.

After a picnic and a pleasant walk through the Poughkeepsie Rural Cemetery, we headed north towards Hyde Park to stay for the night. With Felix along, we went for an early, casual dinner at the CIA's Apple Pie Bakery/Cafe. After that, back to the hotel for a bath and some sleep!

The next day's highlights included a drive through FDR's Presidential Library and the Vanderbilt House up the road from our hotel before we headed for the next cemetery. This one was in Rhinebeck, and we knew less about who we might find, so we took lots of shots, and we'll sort through the info the next time we've got time on our hands (when is that?). We looked for Sheep's Clothing, the Morehouse Merino store, only to learn that it was closed - boo. Guess I should have checked it out on Ravelry first. We got lunch at an orchard/deli/ice cream stand on a county highway somewhere off the Taconic Parkway and took ourselves back home.

We gathered a ton on information, and I'm sure a fair amount of it will have to be sifted out before we get to the good stuff, so my mom is headed to her cousin's house in PA in a few weeks to go through the family papers. Perhaps by year's end we'll have filled in some of the blanks...

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Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Labor Day

Yes, I know. Labor Day was ages back. Well, here I am finally uploading my pictures and blogging them. Ours was a quiet holiday weekend. We spent it with our families, for the most part.

Felix met three of his small cousins (ok, he's met two of them, but he was like a month old... it doesn't count), swam in Memere's pool, and mugged for the camera. It was all good.

Here he is with Rylee and Ayden, my brother's kids. They came up from PA to see my parents for a long weekend. My mom was also taking pictures, so that's why no one is looking directly at the camera.

Ayden is a little less than seven months younger than Felix, and it makes such a difference. I almost forgot that Felix was that small at one point...

Two days later we went down to Memere's for a last dip in the pool before it was closed for the season. Felix broke out his swimsuit and floatie and he and Memere swam like fishies. I swear that $3 floatie from WalMart was probably the best toy he got all summer!

After the swim, there was chowder and clam cakes for all, as well as a visit from second cousin Matejah, who's nine months older and about the same size. Our Felix is not a dainty creature! They grabbed at each other, made each other laugh - all the usual baby antics.

It's nice that he's going to grow up with cousins who are of a similar age. I did, and it makes for super fun family outings now that we're all adults!

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Monday, September 22, 2008

Two Minutes





Saturday, September 20, 2008


Weeks ago now, Felix attended a fish-themed birthday party hosted by Corinne of Loser Family, Inc.

Corinne's mom has a mural business, and does cool painted objects d'art for kids. One of the games/activities was the shark painting pictured here. It was both a cool place to pose and a toss the fishy into the shark's mouth game. Felix, as per usual, enjoyed having his picture taken in the shark's mouth.

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Friday, September 19, 2008

What Passes for An Update

Basically, as a blogger, these days I suck. This suckage melancholy has been seeping into all forty million facets of my personality in the last few weeks, and I was afraid of sounding like the maternal version of a weepy tween's diary:

Dear Diary, I am a terrible mother and my sweet baby has become a raging firemonster. If I were my husband I wouldn't love me 'cuz I am fat and tired and grumpy all the time. My house is totally gross. Things may never get better. Ever. love 4-eva, CDG

Like. Eeeeew.

So, to catch anyone up who might still be checking on me (like the shut-in of a blogger that I have become), here's what my facebook status updates have been since I last posted:

CDG is FREE!!!!!
CDG and Felix just got back from Dutchess County.
CDG remembered to refill her birdfeeder. Greedy birds!
CDG had to actually go to work today. For. Real.
CDG sent the big kids back to school day. Hooray!
CDG is tired of her late summer cold.
CDG is watching a movie!
CDG is avoiding the dirty dishes.
CDG is watching Felix toss his breakfast on the floor.
CDG is playing computer while the kids sleep.
CDG just scored a sweet deal!
CDG is entertained.
CDG is awake. Felix doesn't understand weekends.
CDG is paying bills. Blech.
CDG is going nuh-nights.
CDG is trying to figure out what Felix might eat...
CDG is making pizza.
CDG is Googling locations for Jack's baseball season.
CDG is shopping for a cute and comfy pair of sport mary janes. It's harder than it sounds.
CDG is listening to Felix's *beautiful* song.
CDG is finally blogging again.