Archive for January, 2007

Happy Birthday Uncle Joe

January 31, 2007

My brother, JP, turned 25 today marking a quarter century of enduring nicknames bestowed by our mother like Guipetto,  Pettibones, and Snodgrass to name just a few.  Finn and I called him this morning and regaled him with the tale of his birth.   I was 8 when JP arrived on the scene and I quickly became an off-camera voice in family movies.  Being 8, I have some pretty vivid memories of his arrival.   Since JP wishes that he had a blog from when he was a kid,  this is my tribute to him.

By the winter of ’82, my Mom’s belly was huge.  It was so big in fact the doctor thought that perhaps it was twins.   They gave her one of those newfangled ultrasound tests and they said, “No twins just one very big baby.” 

She was three weeks past her due and could no longer drive since she could not fit behind the wheel.     My Dad took us out for dinner since some lady told my mom, “Go out to eat.  It brings on labor (whatever labor is?).”   So we went to Angelo Bistocchi’s in Dunmore.   We ordered and my Mom went to the ladies room.   After a while,  my Dad got worried and sent me to check on her.   She said,  “Leah, go out and find one of the waitresses and tell her that your mother’s water broke.”   I complied having, of course, no idea what she is talking about.    I tell one of the ladies, “Ummm. My Mom is in the bathroom and her water broke?”   It sends this woman into a complete tizzy and then all the waitresses are running around the tiny restaurant like mad.    My Dad goes for the car and the waitresses usher my mom and I through the cold into the car.  

We get to the CMC and head for the entrance.  My Dad is helping my Mom.   She is wearing Duck Shoes, like Duck Boots but lower cut,  and they are squishing as she walks.   

My Aunt Shirley shows up for me so I miss out on all the action, but I get to sleepover her house which is always a treat.    The next morning my Dad takes me to meet my very big baby brother.   He was 10 lbs 12 oz with no neck just rolls, but he was super cute.  

His full name is Joseph Patrick, like our little guy Finn Patrick, but has always gone by JP.    Just before Finn was born,  JP asked if the baby could call him Uncle Joe.   This reduced me to tears.  He wanted to pay tribute to our Dear Uncle Joe who passed away suddenly a few years ago.    I am very proud of my little brother. 

Post Script – As my father points out in his comment below,  I was actually 7 for the blessed event.   Math was never my strong suit.    I turned 8 a few months later.   Bottom line, I had a lock on the whole only child racket until JP showed up.   

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White Fang

January 29, 2007

What if Jack London wrote a book about a wild baby boy instead of a wild dog? 

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Splash Gordon

January 28, 2007

Mr. Finn loves the tub especially since discovering splashing.

In fact, he enjoys splashing so much he is actively seeking opportunities to splash no matter the location.  Yesterday,  he ducked around the corner into the hallway bathroom.  His Dad sought him out to discover the tot splashing away in the the toilet.   He also unraveled about 20 feet of toilet paper in an effort to dry off and conceal the evidence.  

On/Off

January 24, 2007

We spend a good part of ourday next to the light switches.   Finn has mastered the flip of the switch and the slide of the dimmer and is equally fond of both.   He swivles around, points up at the light and admires his handiwork.    I think he is channeling my grandfather who was a master electrician.  

After countless times hearing Mommy repeat “On / Off”,  Finn blurted out “Aaaawwwfffff”.    I thought it was a fluke until he kept going…. “Aaawwfff”  Aaaawwwffff”  It started with a long, deliberate flat A.   I thought this kid has a Scranton accent already and he doesn’t even live there.   Too funny.   

He has been saying DaDa for a while with the occasional Mama thrown in to appease his affection-monger mother, but it was truly remarkable to hear him say an actual word.   I got giddy with excitement and so did he, but probably because I was bouncing him around like mad.

He repeated the performance over the phone to my parents,  but I could not coax him into it for his Daddy or Nana.   Is it possible that he is already learning how to withhold the goods as ransom?   I will try to capture him on video, but the little bugger is VERY aware of the camera.  

The Two-Step

January 22, 2007

Finn made his big move last night.   He took two steps from Mommy to Daddy while playing.   The steps were surprisingly steady – more like strides than steps.  Unfazed by all our clapping and “Yeah, Big Boy”s,  he went right back to playing. 

He has been “driving” the his red convertible and Tonka for a few weeks,  so we knew that walking was imminent.    I know.  I know.  Careful what you wish for.   He will be tearing around the house in a few weeks and I will be wistful for his little crab walk instead.   

We have been hitting the playgroup circuit.  Finn loves the kids (unless somebody swipes a toy then the dramatics ensue.  I have no idea where he get its it).  Don’t get me wrong,  I love playgroup but there is this underlying competitive current.   As if the minute by minute changes are truly going to matter when they are all grown up.    Next time,  I am asked “So what is he doing”.   I might just reply, “He is perfecting the Texas Two-Step and really enjoys line dancing.”

11 Months

January 18, 2007

Finn is 11 months old today.   This is dangerously close to one year.   Daddy has been saying for months, “Finn is a big boy.”   Mommy says, “No! He is a baby for one year.”   Well,  my time is almost up.    I want to stop the clock, but I know that he needs to grow and become his own little person.  

I was looking back through my monthly folders of photos and through misty eyes I noticed a few themes.   This kid spends a lot of time in Pajamas and Mommy spends a lot of time in that glider.   This is probably due to the fact that kids jammies are just about the cutest things in the whole wide world and the glider is like a little slice of heaven.  The two piece baby gap jammies are the most fun by far.   We think he looks like a mini-super hero since they cling to his little “muscles”  and accentuate the puffy diapered dupey.

A Study in PJs.

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TONKA

January 15, 2007

I can’t wait to fill this up with dirt, rocks and snakes!   It is big and metal and makes loud noises when I bang it into stuff.  Cool!

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Now that’s Italian!

January 12, 2007

His name may be as Irish as Patty’s Pigs, but his appetite is all Italian.   After downing his own dinner,  Finn proceeded to mooch two whole ravioli off Mommy’s plate grunting if Mommy was not moving fast enough.   

The cheese-filled ravs sparked a lively vocabulary session on the proper pronunciation of ricotta.   I explained to Finn very carefully that you say “Ri-gotha”  and never, ever “Ri-Kot-a”.   He replied, “Da-Da”  which is his response to everything.  

Not sure how great the ricotta cheese will be on his little belly; the diaper will tell all.   One thing is for sure, all this mangia has given Mr. Finn a double chin.   Daddy said, “He looks great in his little turtlenecks.  They hold up his chins.” 

Click

January 10, 2007

Tonight while Daddy was watching Duke basketball in the basement,  Finn scurried over to the set,  assumed the summo stance and swiftly put the lights out on Coach K.   He gave us a sly grin over his shoulder.  Our tiny tech has figured out how to turn on and off the TV.   He can do it with the remote.   He can do it without.   The fun never ceases.   

It seems that in every home, the remote has its own name – clicker, flipper, beeper.   At my in-laws,  Finn goes by the moniker “beeperman”.   He continues the fine tradition of being a channel surfer like all the men that have gone before him Nonno, Grandfather, Dad and Uncle Joe.   He has inherited the short attention span and the lightening fast trigger finger.   He loves to change the channels, but more often than not settles on Telemundo.  I can’t decide if it is because he likes the sound of the language or  the looks of the VAAVAAVOOM  hostesses of the daytime talkshows.  BAILA!  Hola Finn!

I’m Comin’ Out

January 9, 2007

While it is true that Finn loves beads & bangs,  fringe & fabric (particularly gold lame),  Disco balls & Donna Summer, we just didn’t except this so soon: