Sunday, June 29, 2008

The Photos Lost Now Are Found

My camera-phone, a very generous gift from my parents, experienced a fatal technical difficulty a few weeks ago. The keypad suddenly stopped functioning. Fortunately, it was still under warranty, but the crushing threat to me was that 10 months of photos and video clips of the boys were locked inside. The phone worked, but I could not access anything in it.

My mom took the phone to the repair store, but they claimed that the photos were beyond reach, took the phone and gave her a replacement. I was devastated when I heard the news. All those memories . . . And I was positive there had to be a way. But now my phone was no longer in my possession. I called the store that had the phone, but they claimed to have already shipped it out and that it would be impossible to ever find it again.

I was heartbroken, but had a hard time believing the phone would be shipped out that very day. It didn't make business sense to ship out every single evening. Persistance paid off and a week later, after several trips to retrieve the phone and being told it was no longer mine and they would not trade the new phone for the old and many calls to upper management, they finally admitted that they had not shipped the phone and I could take it back. Great customer service.

Once I had the phone back in my possession, Brigham solved all my problems by purchasing a download program that pulled everything off. Here is a sampling of photos that would have been lost forever.

Will's first time in a swing, March 14 208

On a walk a few days before Will was born. A very special memory for me.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Summer Day

Last week, we decided to beat the heat at our favorite place in the entire city of Falls Church: the other Cannon residence.

Andrew loves Taylor, Natalee and Piper. He still has not tired of Taylor's one-liner joke: "A chicken wears pink underwear!" Andrew even says it in a weird voice; I am fairly certain he is trying to imitate Taylor's delivery.

The day was hot and I was not interested in warding off requests to jump on the trampoline (when did Andrew drop the old familiar "jump high!" from his trampoline lingo? Oh how he changes every month!). We decided it was a perfect day for the sprinkler. We were right.

There were only a few of those AFV accidents (kids colliding as the speed from opposite directions toward the same spot while parents are laughing too hard to intervene), but the kids were having such a good time, there were no tears.

After a while, Andrew decided to liven things up by spraying the others, primarily Taylor's 7 year old friend. Who submitted to it. When he decided he had had enough, he asked Andrew to stop. Andrew's response:

"Come closer a lil bit!" That is what he was saying right here.

After all the other kids tired of the sprinkler, and there had to be some form of rescue for the 7 year old powerless against the two year old, I stepped in and sprayed Andrew.

Monday, June 16, 2008

We're So Glad When Daddy Comes Home

I just wanted to record that the other day, when loudly opening a can of soda in my kitchen, Andrew heard the tell-tale crack of the can and came streaking happily from his room crying, "Daddy's here! Daddy's here!"

Poor Brig really does drink a constant stream of coke. I used to get mildly annoyed at how much we spent on Diet Lime Coke until I realized that it is what pays all our bills.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

My Day with Peter Breinholt

With my new facebook account, I feel as though I have been transported back in time. I recently dreamed (nightmared) I was in high school again (and then I realized with equal horror that all that was 15 years ago), and my idle thoughts have strayed back to the halls of my college dorm in 1996, the soundtrack of which was provided by Peter Breinholt. So it was entirely appropriate that the very Peter Breinholt himself got out of my dreams and into my chapel yesterday.

The Musician was in town to baptize his little nephew. Yes, we live in a ward of very high-profile Mormons. In my estimation, the Breinholts totally beat out Harry Reid, also a ward member, and they don't even complicate our services with all those secret service agents. (Incidentally, Andrew and Will are related by blood to Peter Breinholt. Ahh, polygamy. It all goes back to George Q.)

It was actually the sweetest little baptism I have ever attended. The little boy was so happy and prepared, the talks were all excellent, and Peter Breinholt pulled out his guitar and sang a primary song. Solo. It was awesome. Honestly, part of me was expecting to hear Songs About the Great Divide. But that children's song sounded even better.

One of the lines in one of the songs we sang that day included something similar to "I want to be clean like the earth after rain." There was something so sweet and pure in that song that really struck a chord with me. Sometimes testimonies and faith can get so complicated and bogged down in the meandering paths of murky doctrines. Yesterday I was reminded that it can be, and should be, as simple as wanting to be good and to follow Jesus, as best we know, as best we can.

And if possible, to have Peter Breinholt performing the musical number whenever reasonably appropriate.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Food Fit For Brig

The other Sunday as we left Church, I stopped to express appreciation to one of the Sunday School teachers for a nice lesson. After a few minutes of pleasantries, she excused herself so she would not be too late for choir practice. "I just had to run out to my car to get this treat for the rest of the choir," she said, gesturing to the package of Fig Newtons in her hand. "I don't know how we would get through practice without them!"

As soon as she was on the other side of the door, Brigham turned to me and declared earnestly, "Fig Newtons are pig food."

"Really. My grandpa had pigs and I am pretty sure that is what we fed them."

This is not the first time that Brigham has described food he does not like as being fit for pigs. There is the story of his mother walking out of the house after Brigham characterized as "slop" the food she had prepared for the family meal. (His mom doesn't remember; Brig still feels very guilty.)

It is mildly surprising to me when he disparages any kind of food item, since he claims, and I can bear witness, that Brigham's main objective in eating is simply "to get full." (Once when I was twisting in indecision over whether to make the baked ravioli or some other thing for the missionaries, Brigham advised me that it didn't matter because they just wanted to get full.) So in this way he is sort of like a pig--with higher standards.

Later that night, under instruction from me to make me laugh, he divulged that he used to be jealous of the pigs. Apparently, they also were fed past due hostess cupcakes. "They couldn't have been that bad."

As a little kid, I had also been envious of my grandmother's horses and livestock, since they were allowed to eat certain cereals that were off-limits to me. I used to steal their food as we headed out to feed them their Fruit Loops and other stale cereals that had probably been stored in some shed in an open container.

Is it silly to say that this made me feel closer to my husband? As it goes, I also happen to hate Fig Newtons. That plus the childhood eagerness to eat food designated for barnyard animals . . . well, at least we have that going for us.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Will at 6 Months

One thing I have learned about babies is that it is almost impossible to accurately record the real "firsts." Everything is a process; I have a hard time determining even when they truly have cut their first teeth. I have settled on relaxing precision in favor of approximation. So, at 7 months old, I can look back and describe what I have witnessed during Will's 6 month of life. The photos were taken between April and the end of May.

During month 6, Will began sitting up on his own. He is still not to be entirely trusted with this feat and will often face-plant if I don't keep a close eye out. But still, the child can sit. Mastering this skill is one of the most welcome milestones for me.

Will has been very busy getting to the places he needs to go. He does not crawl on all fours yet. His movement is much more akin to a tiny baby seal on land. He is very quick at it. It is an image I will never forget. One morning I put him on the living room rug with some toys and then dashed off to get something else taken care of. I turned to see how Will was doing and saw that baby seal drag-pushing himself around the corner and into Andrew's room to go get toys. That little picture described much about little Will. He is independent about getting things for himself; he knows that Andrew is the master slave driver; he must either wait his turn to boss me or just help himself. He never bosses. One of the most endearing and fascinating things to me is discovering where a baby would like to go if only he could get there. I love that Will wants toys and he knows where to get them.

His favorite toys are balls. And balloons. Today he played with hard boiled eggs. Anything round and Willsie is happy.

Will is carrying on the tradition begun by his brother of insisting upon stumbling around on two feet while I clutching my fingers. I hate this stage. Other mothers dread the day their baby will be on the hoof, but I truly cannot wait. It is the day of my salvation from the hours upon hours of breaking my back acting as a human walking stick. Andrew used to shriek when he could feel me trying to pry my fingers out of his tight grasp. Will complains, too, but is a lot nicer about it. Thanks, honey.

Will also likes to push the limits on how long he can keep awake. What happened to my perfect sleeper from a few months ago? It is a curse I brought upon us. I only ask that the boys pay us back for all these hours of lost sleep by being investment bankers later.

Willsie still smiles all the time, laughs at Andrew's every move, particularly the ones that make physical contact with him, and babbles. He loves to take baths with Andrew, tackle Andrew, roll on Andrew and watch Andrew. He eats a lot better than Andrew did. His favorite food seems to be peaches with rice cereal. He seems to have relaxed his policy of freaking out when I sing, but has now is experiencing stranger anxiety. He will not let others hold him. His hierarchy of favorite people is very obvious. After me and Brig (a distant 2nd), he likes my mom. He will let Papa hold him if absolutely necessary.

Will is over half-way to a year. Another six months and he will be well on his way to being more of a toddler than a baby. It just goes.