Monday, December 20, 2010

Green PJ's

Nate's new cool green pajamas make him look like a slightly skanky playboy. Which is precisely the look we're going for.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


On this Sunday prior to the holidays, my Mom and Dad planned to drive into Manhattan and join the protest against the censorship of David Wojnarowicz's video at the Smithsonian Museum. Folks were upset that the head the Smithsonian ordered the National Portrait Gallery to remove Wojnarowicz's 4 minute video, bowing to pressure from right wing, anti-gay and religious nuts. This was Obama time, WTF! So Nate and I -- inspired -- planned to meet my parents on the UES for some serious marching, fist-raising and possibly even violence and/or looting.
But Nate first had to nap so that he was in a good state of mind. And then he was hungry so he had to eat his yogurt and pieces of omelet. And then it took time to dress him since it was chilly outside and of course there was some traffic.

So we were late and missed the protest. But while my Dad and Emma listened to the Giant/Eagles game in the car, my Mom, Nate and I found a diner in which to warm, grab a bite and hang for a bit.
There aren't many kid-friendly joints for 1-2 year olds in Williamsburg and so we've gotten used to feeding Nate at home. So this was weird and kind of adventurous being in restaurant with Nate, and it was hilarious to see Nate out in the world, eating a snack in a booth in a bustling diner, looking around making noises, playing with sugar packets, trying to drink out of a straw, saying "hi" to the waitresses and busboys and every other person around him. My Mom and Nate were a funny team on the west side of the booth, Nate eating his snacks and my Mom in her sunglasses and all black beatnik wear. I took several pictures so as not to forget.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Sunny Morning

Nate wants yogurt. Then he wants apple sauce. Oh wait, then he wants yogurt again. This boy has definite opinions about what he eats, when he eats and -- I'm sure one day -- how the overly-enthusiastic waitress could possibly recommend the braised short ribs.

In this regard, Shana understands him WAY more than I. Here is one video -- cut into three parts, each about 45 seconds long, of Shana and Nate on a random sunny morning, Nate eating breakfast and all of us listening to Pete Yorn's On Your Side.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


It was back to Love's Folly post Thanksgiving. I took several nature walks with Nate, trying to teach him the word "tree". I carried Nate around the grounds, by the cove, the dock, the pond, the lonely road that snakes around the property near the neighbors, normally out of site from the house. Nate touched a wide variety of trees and bushes and tall weeds and leaves and branches. I tickled his face with pine needles. Nate craned his neck upward -- to the tops of trees -- when I pointed upwards. He reached for branches when they were presented to him. "Tree," I said again and again in various ways. "Tree." "Look at this. It's a tree." "Look at this tree. Wow. Tree." "Woa, check this tree out. It's a tree. Can you say tree?" "Look at this. It's a... a... a... Tree." Nate never said the word, but he seemed intrigued enough and happy to be outside. Later, after the walk, we sat in the deep grass and hung out outside in the crisp air. Nate played with some leaves. He looked around. He didn't move much. I pointed at the vast collection of tall pine trees near the pond. "Tree," I said. "Those are trees."

Thursday, November 25, 2010


This was Nate's 2nd Thanksgiving with the Moshans, Gessers, Weissbergs and Bernsteins, a tradition that goes back more than 40 years. It's a great crew. In addition to Shana, Nate and me, there's Mom, Dad, Brook and Avi and Sadie and Mae. Then there's Uncle Paul, Aunt Rochelle, Cousins Debra and Kenny and their kids -- 2nd cousins? cousins once removed? -- Drew, Nina and Cole. Then there's cousin Erik and Kim who were married two summers ago and their little daughter Mei-Ling, who is about 5 or so months younger than Nate. That Erik and I had our first kid within a few months of each other is no coincidence; we are similar in many ways actually. We both needed to find the right woman and grow into a mature-enough adult. And then we really needed to find the really right woman. And then we needed to be given some sort of ultimatum. Anyway, here is Nate and Mai-Ling on the changing bed together. They are going to be good friends I think. They will be similar in many ways...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Changing Nate

For some inexplicable reason, Nate doesn't enjoy a good diaper change. He should. We're exchanging a diaper full of poop and pee for a clean one. You'd think he'd be gratified. You'd think his first words would be "thank you for doing that." But he's pissed whenever you sit him on the changing table and start the process. He resists. It's often a contest of wills. On this morning -- pre thanksgiving -- Nate's will was strong. But Shana's was stronger...

Sunday, November 14, 2010

East Hampton Autumn

We went to the Fagen estate in East Hampton for Deconstructed Turducken, a yearly get together of friends to feast on Turducken. This year the group went all top chef, giving their interpretations to Turducken, rather than fitting a chicken into a duck into a turkey, something the group was loath to do. Nate was less into the food and more into the hang. Here he is playing in his first pile of leaves with Fagen's dog Sachy, riding in Fagen's open-aired jeep with Shana, and taking a morning walk on the deserted beach with his Pop.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

crab crawl

Nate's crawling saga is only matched by his talking saga. Obviously, Nate just isn't interested in crawling like other kids. He's figured out this loping, one handed lurching that seems to work for him. It's funny every time. As for talking, he babbles incessantly (Cha-ku-chi KAI!!) and only recently seems to (kind of?) know "hi" and (maybe?) "bye". In this video, he crab crawls and then says "hi".

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Nate was a fairly grumpy but cute Kermit the Frog for halloween (he was sick and tired.) We walked around Williamsburg for awhile but the annual Witches Walk was pretty meager this year and it was cold out so we headed to the Brooklyn Winery, where Nate angrily scooted around the sandy floor, quickly turning himself into Bad Kermit--a mean and dirty version of the friendly frog. Roger and Josh met us there and then we headed to Stephanie and Matt's where all tour neighbor friends with kids were watching movies, drinking wine and eating pizza. After about 10 minutes, Bad Kermit had a major tantrum and we took him back upstairs to bed.

Music Class

I've been meaning to post about Nate's music class, which he has been taking for two semesters now with Audra Rox up at Mini Jake. A bunch of kids (most a bit older than Nate) gather in a circle with their moms/nannies and sing songs, dance, play with instruments and scarfs for about 40 minutes every Friday. Nate loves it and is usually the first person in the center of the circle, usually before the class even starts, flapping his arms excitedly or scooting over the other kids and their moms and smiling up at them. Here's a little video of the Nate Dancer....

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Nate on Long Island

We went to my parent's place on Long Island for the night and Nate got some great love and attention from the grandpa, nanna and emma. (OK fine, Shana and I also got to check out the new Woody Allen movie at the Arts Cinema on Sunday afternoon). Nate is kind of crab crawling around at this point, which made for much laughter at his expense. It's thrilling to see your boy with your parents -- and in-laws too -- in a way I didn't much appreciate. These are the most important people in the world to you, and there they are, loving each other, having their own relationship, giggling into each other's faces. Nate might not fully appreciate it yet, but he's a lucky grandson to have these 4 grandparents.


I love this picture.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Hiking in Sheffield, MA

We went to Sheffield, MA to hang with Doug and Carrie in their lovely and comfy mountain vacation home. We were to go hiking and so were compelled to buy a bad ass hiking backpack in which Nate would sit. Being an urban Brooklyn boy, he hasn't really encountered much nature, which is kind of weird I guess. In the forrest -- a side trail leading to the Appalachian Trial -- there was much for Nate to gawk at. He made lots of high pitched noises and squealed with delight as we walked the slow incline up up up (and then down down down) . He held onto a stick for a while. He touched the bark of trees and smiled. Then, obviously beat from the arduous hiking, Nate got cranky. We took him down and like any hiker, drank a bottle while resting under a tree. Invigorated, Nate chatted and made noises for the remainder of the hike.

Back at the house, Nate gimped along on the lawn, rolling a little on the slope. He giggled with Doug and danced with Carrie. After a meltdown of biblical proportions -- we kept him up an hour later than his bedtime -- Nate slept on the car ride back to NYC. I think he enjoyed the outdoors...

Monday, October 4, 2010

Nate in a Box

Nate is on the move these days. It's not a crawl so much as a gimpy lurch, a lunging scoot. It's good to see him more or less mobile. We weren't that worried that he wasn't crawling, it's just that we were worried he wasn't crawling. But as new parents, I think we handled it pretty well. We didn't panic. Sure we took the free help from NYC's early intervention program, but what was the downside in that? We didn't take him to an orthopedic specialist. We didn't take him to Canada or Finland to discuss options with some international guru. We encouraged and urged Nate on, but we didn't torture him, much to the chagrin of NYC's early intervention person. Anyway, now that Nate can move, he's getting into things and carrying on with great spirit. Plus, now that he's mobile, it's fun to put him in a box to see if he can escape. So far, he can't, like in this picture.

Of note at 1 year and a few weeks...
  • Nate is extremely chatty, like, to the point that he doesn't shut up. KIRCHA KIRCHA KOW!!
  • He absolutely HATES being changed. Every time. He bawls with hurt and you have to distract him with a song or a toy that sings.
  • We've said "no" to Nate a few times, mostly when he throws something from his food tray. "No," we say sternly. He makes eye contact. He feels bad. His face contorts in sorrow and his bottom lip shakes until he bursts out in tears.
  • Nate dances when he hears music. He waves his arms as if he's surfing. This kid will enjoy music, that's for sure.
  • He laughs with glee if you bite his chest or belly. He's ticklish and laughs with abandonment.
  • He's a great sleeper. He goes to bed at about 7-7:30, usually with little fuss. He wakes up at about 6:30-7.
  • He's listening to "Oh Susana" in his crib over and over and over again.

Monday, September 20, 2010


Here's my mom and nate at the piano, my mom site-reading and singing a few classic children's songs with nate fascinated and then distracted by his own need to bang those keys himself. My parents bought him a little high end toy piano for his birthday. My grandmother played piano. My mom is a wonderful classical piano player. I play. No pressure whatsoever Nate...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Happy First!!!

Nate turned one this weekend and we had a really fun and loving family brunch/birthday party. The whole family came, including Brook and Avi and the girls from Washington. Nate was thrilled for most of it-playing and dancing with his cousins, but by the time we got to the cake (which I made), and everyone started singing, he got a little overwhelmed (see pic) and wound up going down for a nap before the end of the party. So we opened his presents without him--he got a great mini piano from the Moshans and a drum from the Liebmans--which will he choose?

Note in the picture with Sadie that he's standing--sort of. There's still no crawling even though Jackie comes to our house every week to torture him into learning but he seems to be more interested in standing (assisted) and making his own way around by crawling, scooting and lunging. The doctor is not concerned and says he'll get there eventually--even though he seems to be a little tummy-time-deficient. Jackie, his physical therapist, says he's mostly lazy and stubborn....Nate hates her too.

It's been a great year and Nate is growing into a great little boy--happy, playful, sweet. He loves music and playing with his toys. He smiles at strangers and offers them bites of his cookie. He has 7 teeth and drools on everything and everyone. He sleeps like a champ and eat fairly well, still mostly yogurt. There are moments when he loses it but he's quick to recover. We're looking forward to this next year and all its milestones and just to spending more time with this awesome kid.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Fire Island

Nate had a fantastic summer--we've been away almost every weekend -- either at Loves Folly, Huntington, the Hamptons or Fire Island--where we shared a hosue with Aimee, Marc and Ari for a week. Nate played in the sand, felt the ocean lap his feet and saw a sunset. It was a beautiful week, though challenging in many ways (we got a babysitter for part of it so we could have a break.) Between the six of us, however, Nate was the best behaved and probably had the most joyous time. He especially loved the ferry ride!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010


The Moshans got a new puppy--a darling yellow-white lab named Emma and she's adorable and feisty and exactly Nate's size. They played together this weekend....and will grow up together we hope!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


In Fire Island, on the dock, taking a few pics during the magic hour of sunset. Nate wasn't in the best mood for these photos -- it was getting close to bed time -- but that did not stop us from snapping a few pics of our gorgeous boy with the ridiculously gorgeous hair.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Thursday, July 8, 2010


The city agency has deemed Nate qualified for the early intervention program, which is both disappointing and useful. It's all about the stomach muscles, according to the physical therapist who evaluated Nate. In a few weeks we will be assigned a therapist to come to the house and work him out. Yes, like a dog trainer. But the good news is it's free and now an expert will hopefully resolve what seems to be not a huge but worth-addressing problem. In the meantime, we got some tips to help the cutie get stronger...and Michael is of course taking this part very seriously.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


July was a fun month for Nate. He spent the July 4th holiday at Love's Folly, basking in the glow of his grandparents. It was a love-fest between grandchild and grandparent. Among other things, Nate hung out and played with boxes and balls in the living room, swam in the pool, hot-tubbed, touched actual grass, took a nature walk and felt trees and leaves. He had a blast.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

We took Nate to his 9 month check up. Stats are... 55% height, 25% weight, 36% head size.

The doctor thought he needed to be pushed in terms of rolling and tummy time; it's something he should be more interested in at his age. She told us to call a city agency that evaluates whether and how to help kids catch up physically. Weird! There was no real cause concern the doctor insisted; we just needed to help him. Fine fine fine, we'll call the city agency. But... Really??? Look at how cute he is!!

Friday, June 11, 2010

9 months

Nate is 9 months old. He's chatty and smiley and still totally unamused by being on his tummy. He's suddenly extremely ticklish near his armpits. He's sitting up but falls backwards easily. He's mostly a delight to be with what with that big grin with 2 little bottom teeth poking through.

Sunday, June 6, 2010


We went on a family-tour vacation this week, beginning with Grandpa's 70th birthday celebration in Huntington where we went to the beach for the first time (!) and got to hang out with the cousins. It was the first time the kids were all old enough to do the same things--well, at least bathe and watch Peter Pan in bed. It was a great weekend....

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Farm

After seeing Nana and Grandpa, we visited Opa and Simmie at Love's Folly Farm where Nate got to swim, play in the grass, see a couple deers and go boating (as well as get marooned on a sand bar and rescued by the "Triple B.") He also attended more farmers markets than most adults do in their lives. And played this suspenseful game with Opa...