If I lived in a gingerbread house every day would be sugar-coated, the smell of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger would waft through the house filling my soul and satisfying my taste buds and my neighbors would all have impeccable taste creating a healthy competition in seasonal landscaping. Each night when I would sleep the skies would fill with gum drops and each morning when I would wake fresh snow would fall. I would believe that everything is possible, that dreams come true and all mankind is inherently good because I live in a gingerbread house, after all.
The potential of a child inspires movies, music, and change. Imagine that potential not being realized due to a fundamental need. Share Our Strength’s mission is to solve that, to end childhood hunger and poverty in the U.S. and abroad. Since the launch of their No Kid Hungry campaign they have provided 775 million meals and their Cooking Matters initiative has helped 464,000 families learn to shop and cook healthier. Continuing our support of their No Kid Hungry campaign we attended Cookies & Cocoa, a fun afternoon of holiday magic, the spirit of giving and a culinary VIP experience.
Oliver was our easiest baby. He slept through the night at 10 weeks, he nursed and fed easily, he didn’t fuss or whine. He mostly sat back and watched his big brother and big sister swirl around him. He was slow to crawl, to walk, to talk. He was the essence of the laid back third child.
Oliver as a baby and toddler was no indication of the boy he’d become. Nine year old Oliver is observant, inquisitive, detailed, analytical, energetic and independent. He is reason over sentiment, comprehension over illusion, deliberate over accidental. He can articulate his feelings while at the same time stomp over others, unintentionally. When I would say “Why would you do that, don’t you think it would hurt his/hers feelings?” he would merely shrug. This reaction would drive me insane, leaving me to think my son was being defiant and disrespectful. But recently I’ve come to learn that his shrug is not attitude but honesty; he doesn’t know the answer. So I’ve learned to explain it to him and he files it away. It’s almost like watching more machine than human; he takes new explanations, processes it, remembers it and learns from it.
We have celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas in the city many times over the years. Each time there are things that are the same; the floats, balloons, crowds, ice skating, the cold, Santa. And each time there is one thing that is constantly different; the kids. From Lucas’ first to Penny’s first to Oliver’s first each time brings new belief, understanding, complaining and appreciation. No matter how tired we are from lack of sleep, carrying the kids, standing in crowds and navigating amongst the tourists we know that once we are home we’ll only recall the best parts.
Sticky, bubbly, smooth, buttery, stretchy, tacky
Science and creativity
Each year we celebrate Halloween as a family. This year was bittersweet as four of the cousins will be graduating high school in June and may not make it back home next year for our annual tradition. We’ll make our memories whenever and however we can.
He’s been begging for months to go camping. The weather, logistics, sheer effort stalls us. Anthony offered backyard camping and to our surprise he was appeased, as long as they slept in the tent all night. How we take for granted the incredible power we have, to be able to give our child his heart’s desire.