Friday, October 31, 2008

History

We know the battle ahead will be long, but always remember that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, nothing can withstand the power of millions of voices calling for change.

We have been told we cannot do this by a chorus of cynics who will only grow louder and more dissonant in the [time] to come. We’ve been asked to pause for a reality check. We’ve been warned against offering the people of this nation false hope.

But in the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope. For when we have faced down impossible odds; when we've been told that were not ready, or that we shouldn't try, or that we can't, generations of Americans have responded with a simple creed that sums up the spirit of a people.

Yes we can.

It was a creed written into the founding documents that declared the destiny of a nation.

Yes we can.

It was whispered by slaves and abolitionists as they blazed a trail toward freedom through the darkest of nights.

Yes we can.

It was sung by immigrants as they struck out from distant shores and pioneers who pushed westward against an unforgiving wilderness.

Yes we can.

It was the call of workers who organized; women who reached for the ballot; a President who chose the moon as our new frontier; and a King who took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the Promised Land.

Yes we can to justice and equality. Yes we can to opportunity and prosperity. Yes we can heal this nation. Yes we can repair this world. Yes we can.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

brothers

since marcus' birth, i've often been asked, "does he look like owen?"
my answer is often, "yes, at times.... but i look at him and just see marcus".

looking at these photos... it's hard to imagine that anyone would think these two cuties aren't brothers!


owen loves the mobile as much as marcus does!


notice the suave new haircut (mommy and daddy are getting good with the clippers!)


he's so cute, eh?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Walkin' and Talkin'

Tonight, Owen and I went for a walk just before dinner. Here's a rough transcript of our conversation.

Owen: "Daddy, what's this way?"
Me: "It's a new way. This will be an adventure walk."
Owen: "Yeah, I haven't been this way in a long time."
Me: "Yep."
Owen: "Daddy, this is the way to the choo-choo Christmas lights!"
Me: "Yes, this is the way [to the house that had a Christmas train display on the side of their house--10 months ago!]"
Owen: "Daddy, I like this new way."
Me: "It's fun to try new paths and new directions, huh?"
Owen: "Daddy, I want to go home now."
Me: "But we just started! How about we turn up here?"
Owen: "Okay!"
...
Owen: "Daddy, it will only be a short time when there will be choo-choo Christmas lights!"
Me: "Yep, probably only a month away. After Thanksgiving."
Owen: "Yeah! Tomorrow there will be choo-choo Christmas lights!"
Me: "Um, I think it'll be a bit longer than tomorrow."
Owen: "No it won't be long. It will be short."
Me: "Yes, it will be short. Let's turn up here."
Owen: "We can tell Mommy that we went a new way!"
Me: "Yep!"
Owen: "Daddy, what happens when you mix red and white and blue?"
Me: "I don't know, what?"
Owen: "I'll give you a hint: (whispering) it's a rectangle."

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Clever boy


Owen cashed in his daily DVD privileges before lunch time, so Erin warned him saying, "Okay, you've already watched DVD. I don't want you to ask me about it after your nap. When you wake up, No. Asking. About. DVD. You can play with your toys instead. Okay?" Owen agreed.

After his nap this afternoon, I was taking a picture of Marcus and Owen said, "Daddy, I have an idea! You can take a movie of Owen watching Piglet's Big Movie!"

I could only laugh and commend him on his obedience of the letter of the law, if nothing else.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ummmm...

From Ph.D. Comics:
Postdocs are just below Un-tenured Profs.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Fathering as investment

I just read an absolutely amazing post my one of my favorite bloggers Ta-Nahisi Coates (pronounced tah-nuh-hah-see). It's about Barack Obama's white grand parents, their unheralded heroism, and parenthood. Even if you don't support Obama, this is a truly inspiring piece that goes way beyond politics (read the full post here). Here's an exerpt:
"Barack Obama's grandmother is gravely ill. My temptation yesterday was to say nothing. And then, this morning, I came across this picture at Andrew's [blog]. I've reflected a lot--personally--on Obama's campaign and the values of parenting. I often think about how his Dad left him, and never knew that his son would be within days of the presidency of the greatest power in history. Think about this--what else could a father want? My own Dad often says that too many black men see child-rearing as "responsibility" and not "personal investment." They forget about the joy that children bring, and instead focus on the bills, or on stupid, petty beefs with women. As my own son creeps past eight, I've been reminded of that."
After reading this post, I was holding Marcus and rocking him to sleep for the night. There are other things to get caught up on: my lack of free time, how hard it is to get a 3-month-old baby to fall asleep, how I just want to sit down and veg out, how hard it is to have a conversation with my wife with a 3-year-old constantly vying for her attention. But as I stood there with my son in my arms, instead of focusing on all that, I just focused on the dividends of joy paid out daily by my investments in Owen and Marcus. Sure, I'd have more free time--and more freedom, in some sense--if I didn't have kids. But I don't really see how I could be more happy.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Peanut Butter Jelly Time!!!

Owen loves the Youtube. And Owen loves the dancing banana singing the famous, if not ancient (circa 2002!) internet meme "Peanut Butter Jelly Time." In case you haven't heard of this wonderful little song/video, here's your background reading:



Owen now sings this song every time he eats a PB&J sammich, which is to say every single day. And now, I proudly present Owen's version of "Peanut Butter Jelly Time." You can sing along at home with these lyrics.

back in the game

all this pregnancy, childbirth, postpartum stuff left me in what *i* would consider a cooking slump. fortunately, last saturday i had a reason to get back in the game. some friends hosted an oktoberfest potluck and i took the opportunity to try my hand at making apple strudel. not to toot my own horn, but omg, it was yummy! some other amazing things in our feast were some traditional german brats, homemade sourkraut, german potato salad, pretzels, spetzel, and two micro-brews. woah. there were even a few folks in leiderhozen. so much fun!

anyhow, here's a few photos of strudel making that sparked my recent dive back into cooking.



some other recent kitchen endeavors have been homemade chicken pot pie (complete with pie crust from scratch),



beet and goat cheese ravioli (recipe below),




bbq chicken pizza on whole-wheat crust, arugula & watermelon salad, and an indian veggie curry with cilantro mint chutney. my mouth is wattering a little thinking about that chutney :) perhaps i'm meant to own a beachfront cafe someday......

Beet Ravioli with Poppy Seed Butter (adapted from epicurious)

2 large red or golden beets
1/2 cup chevre (aka goat cheese)
2 T. dried breadcrumbs
*lemon zest (optional)
*fresh thyme (optional)

premade won-ton wrappers (or if you have no kids and lots of time, make your own pasta)

1/2 c. butter
1 T. poppy seeds
freshly grated parmesean cheese

roast the beets at 375 for about an hour or until tender when pierced with a knife. allow to cool and then peel & finely grate into a medium bowl. add chevre and breadcrumbs (zest & thyme if using) & season with salt & pepper.

spoon heaping teaspoon onto the half of each pasta square, dampen the edge and fold dough over filling, pressing the edges together. transfer prepared ravioli to a floured surface while you assemble remaining ravioli.

melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat & stir in poppy seeds. keep warm. cook ravioli (about a dozen at a time) in a boiling, salted water for about 2 min (or until they float to the top). transfer cooked ravioli to skillet with butter & toss to coat. serve topped with parmesean.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

still giggling

while pretending to be a doctor yesterday, owen was listening to my heartbeat. i asked, "how does it sound?" to which he replied, "buhBUMP buhBUMP, you know, like a speedbump".

also for the record, i got my first "whatever" from him. wow, it seems early.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Haka

Our downstairs neighbor is the trainer for the Anuenue Hawaiian-Language Immersion School's football team, and she invited us to the team's homecoming game. Before the game, they performed the Haka, which is a traditional Maori dance. Even though the Maori are the indiginous people of New Zealand, the Haka is quite common among Hawaiian football teams. We thoroughly enjoyed seeing it in person for the first time.



Owen recently started doing his own version of the Haka in the car on the way to soccer practice. We'll try to catch it on video, but he has actually been quite camera-shy lately, if you can believe it. Stay tuned!

october is here

pumpkin patch adventures



hanging with the boys