Crawling !

October 31, 2007 | Leave a Comment

Yesterday was a red letter day for Conall. After working himself up to it over the past week or so, he can now officially crawl across the room. Not bad for a seven month old ! Now we have to batten down the hatches, lock the cupboards, and hide the TV remotes…The other kids are excited that it’s Hallowe’en. They’re really looking forward to going trick-or-treating in Rhinebeck village, where the houses are all decorated and, for the night, are home to all sorts of skeletons and ghosts and foul ghouls and monsters…

The kids had a dry run on Sunday, when we took them to Staatsburg for a town Hallowe’en party. There were prizes for the best costumes, and also for the best carved Jack o’ Lanterns. Jenn was busy with them for the afternoon before the party; Orla dressed up as a Cheetah, and Eoghan was dressed up as a Zookeeper – looking somewhat like a cross between Indiana Jones and The Crocodile Hunter. He had Orla on a leash, and sported a sign saying “Zoo Keeper – Beware of Wild Cheetah”.

Jenn was delighted with herself when they won best in their age group, and even more delighted when they won both first and second prize in the pumpkin contest !

The town laid on a great party, with fireworks, a bonfire, band, bouncing castle, etc. And with tonight’s events in Rhinebeck, including a Haunted House at the local Fire Station, the kids are having a great week !

Other news is that we must have been exposed to Chickenpox when we went to Maine. Eoghan exhibited a rash when we came back, and then two weeks later Orla got spots which were diagnosed as chickenpox. It was strange, as they had both been previously immunised. But they were lucky, only developing mild cases. But poor Conall, who has not yet been immunised, is now covered from head to toe with spots. With luck, though, they won’t leave any lasting trace…

Meanwhile, Jenn is exhausted after spending a few weeks doing spring cleaning. We’re considering moving into the middle of the village for a change, and so are putting our house on the market. Given how unusual it is, though, I expect that it will be a year or more before we actually sell…



Summer Vacation

October 1, 2007 | Leave a Comment

All at sea !

All at sea – click here for more pictures 

So vacation is over. It was a great two weeks, and just the rest I needed. As mentioned earlier, it started with a 24 hour road trip to Toronto and St. Mary’s in Canada, to meet up with the McCotter gang for a wedding brunch. I spent the night in the picturesque Westover Inn, run by Stephen, which is a jewel. Well worth a getaway trip, especially if you’re into theatre – the nearby town of Stratford is, not surprisingly, home to the largest Shakespeare festival outside England.

4:30 next morning saw me on the road back to Rhinebeck, where I met up with Jenn and the kids before continuing on into the city where I met up with Liam for a Rush concert at Madison Square Garden. We weren’t the oldest swingers in town, but certainly weren’t the youngest, either – it was interesting to see how many children were there with their parents. This seems to be a trend at rock concerts now as the original fans age (along with the bands!)

I spent the rest of the week at home with Jenn and the kids, until Saturday when we all headed off to Maine, with Jenn’s mom in tow. We had a great night in Boston where we met RB and Greg, and then on Sunday we headed off, first to Portsmouth where Jenn and the kids wanted to visit a Fairy House tour. It was news to me, but I guess there’s this whole sub-culture…Anyway, the kids really enjoyed it.

Next stop was Ogunguit – Beautiful place by the sea - in Maine, where we spent a wonderful few days. Our hotel was just perfect, having plenty of pools and spas, and a rolling green lawn that ran down to the cliffs overlooking the ocean. A cliffside walk, the Marginal Way, runs for over a mile and provides a wonderful vista over the sea. We had a lovely time, the kids enjoying exploring the tidal pools for crabs and fish, and I even managed a couple of swims in the ocean. Admittedly, it was brisk, with the only other folks in the water wearing wet-suits, but totally invigorating. Highly recommended !

Thursday saw us back home, where we spent a leisurely few days doing very little – the most active thing we did was to take the kids to their soccer practice on Saturday morning. Both of the older kids did well, despite Eoghan’s getting a ball in the face. (like Jack Dempsey – and Reagan – he forgot to duck). He’s the stoic one in the family, and refused any assistance, fighting his tears. (Now Orla, on the other hand, is a drama queen with a low pain threshold !)

A great two weeks. Can’t wait for the next vacation !