Saturday, December 11, 2010

November Began With Teddy Roosevelt

So November has also come and gone. Time to catch up!

The boy and I spent a morning on Theodore Roosevelt Island at the beginning of November. It's a beautiful, quiet little island in the middle of the Potomac River with a memorial to the "Trust Buster" in the center. Tommy inserted himself into a game of hide and seek that a group of kids were playing in and around the memorial. It turned out to be a fun way to spend a chilly morning.

Later on last month, T took to sweeping the back patio. He's hired!

His cousins Luke and Sophie from Denver came to the East Coast to visit friends and family and to experience Ben's Chili Bowl. Tommy played host in his hood and showed them what chili half-smokes are all about on U Street.

Lola came up to visit her little guy, and we took a trip down to the National Mall to ride the carousel.

Papa and son rode first and got a sticker to show for it.

After seeing how much fun her own son and grandson had, Lola couldn't resist getting her own ticket and riding herself! With tears of joy in her eyes, she saddled up and enjoyed yeehawing with her little partner on her very first carousel ride.

And then it was time to kick the ol' football around. That's international football (soccer), not American football, folks...

And on another fine November day, the family headed out to Mitchell Park in DC for some playground fun. It was then that we decided it was time to cut the boy's hair. No longer did his beautiful curls activate in the heat and humidity of the DC summer. His hairdo had evolved into a kind of scraggly mullet, and it was time to end that unfortunate look, despite its 1980's appeal.

So Tommy got BUZZED! And started sporting his Papa's haircut.

After that emotional event, we headed down to North Carolina to visit our friends the Rhees. Callie and Tommy shared a swing, and we all had a great time. Our fall visit to Carrboro is becoming a tradition...

And speaking of traditions, we headed down to Richmond for Thanksgiving. Here's a pic of the Zwicker clan gathered 'round the table.

And of course, T and David had a grand time running laps through the house and then playing in the leaves in the backyard.

All grown up! Look how different they look from last year:

After all the family fun, we stopped by Virginia Center Commons for a Christmas concert. Tommy's Pop was playing, and he couldn't have been more excited to see his grandfather play in a real live band. Pop even broke form a bit to glance and smile Tommy's way. Very cute!

Friday, December 10, 2010

October To Remember

Ok, October ended a long, long time ago. But it's never too late to blog about it!

The month began simply enough with plans for decorating and carving pumpkins with smiley faces. Here, Tommy creates his art on a toddler sized one. The smiley face turned out to look like a bunch of random black marks, but beauty and art are in the eye of the beholder, right? The smile on his face makes up for the lack of one on the pumpkin...

Tommy's training as a handyman continued with him fixing things around the house. Apparently many screws need tightening around here.

Early October found us in Richmond once again. We went to visit Tommy's new cousin, and to provide support for his parents as they adjusted to life with two children. First up though was a visit with Lola. Our trip to the cemetery was followed by a round of putt-putt across the street. I'm not sure who had more fun, the boy or the grandmother.

Away we go!

Lining up putts like Tiger Woods. Video to follow in separate post.

This was your typical putt-putt course complete with animals and windmills and tricky holes. At the end of one, Tommy put his ball in the hippo's mouth and had a bit of trouble getting it out.
"Hmmm, maybe I'll try this way."

"Nope, not workin'. How about the other end of the putter?"

"Not workin' either. I guess I'll have to go in after it myself."


The next day, we took cousin David off his parents' hands for a couple of hours and hit the Skipwith Elementary School playground for some romping.

Then it was home for a piano duet.

After missing out on football season last year, we took Tommy down to Charlottesville for Homecoming as the Hoos took on UNC. Unfortunately the game turned out badly for the home team, dropping their record with Tommy in attendance to 1-2. We'll get 'em next year.
The main storyline of this trip turned out to be Tommy's blossoming obsession with marching bands. Before the game, we caught the Wahoo Walk a pregame event that features the team making the walk through the stadium lot. A small group from the Cavalier Marching Band was there to get the folks grooving before the team's arrival, and the little guy couldn't keep his eyes and ears off of it. One of the drummers even let him play the quints afterwards, which really made his day and probably planted the seed for what would become his Halloween costume (more on that later).

Tommy took tailgating literally. Or maybe he started a new trend - trunkgating.

Another sign of his obsession: Every time I pointed out a football play on the field, T would point to the stands and yell, "BAND!" So much for that football scholarship...

After the C'ville trip, it was hard to get him to go anywhere without his drum and drumsticks. The obsession grows...

Later in the month, we took a long weekend trip to Cambridge, Maryland with the Chen Nguyen family. Tommy absolutely adores Sydney and Julia, and we enjoyed a relaxing weekend with the group, eating crabcakes, hiking, swimming, golfing, making s'mores, and basically taking it easy.

Gotta look good for my public.

More putt-putt!

And of course, Tommy had to lead the girls in an impromptu marching band reenactment. This time, they're all playing horns as they march.

Back home, we fed the marching band flames by creating a drummer outfit in UVA orange and blue for him to wear on Halloween. In this picture, we were getting him hype for the costume by catching the Howard Homecoming parade, featuring several marching bands. He powered through to watch at least five bands march by. Now whenever we cross the intersection of Georgia and Florida Avenues, he says, "Marching band!"

And finally - the costume! He even had shoes with orange and blue tassles to go along with the ensemble. And look out for the cape in other shots. Not a bad piece of work by his Papa and Mama, with special help from Tita Liz, too!

Out in Georgetown for trick-or-treating with friend Sophie.

Tommy's interest in marching bands and drumming has continued since this fun month. He refers to those orange and blue pants as his "marching band" pants, plays the drum all day, and marches with various instruments on command. His marching band veteran Mama is very proud.