Archive for May, 2013

NYC

May 27, 2013

Dear Roman,

We just got back from a family vacation to New York.  As a child some of my favorite books in the entire world took place in New York and a few of the stories I’ve already been able to introduce to you- Eloise and Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing to name a few. It’s a city that your dad and I adore and a place we have been waiting to share with you and your sister. This spring was ideal and so we hopped on an airplane and traveled across country. From the moment we got off the plane and into a big yellow taxi cab you were taken over with excitement. Our first place to visit was Times Square because really what better place is there to be overwhelmed with all the street chaos, over the top buildings and flashy lights everywhere. The streets sparkled and so did your face. We walked block after block and you took it all in. The streets were filled with traffic and the sidewalks with people. Our first outing in NY was living up to your expectations.

The next day we spent our time walking through Central Park stopping to play at various parks or to watch the street entertainment. You even met two boys who lived on the Upper West Side and who became instant friends while you flew paper airplanes through the park. When it was time to leave them you turned to me and asked, “can we get their email so we can have a playdate the next time we’re in NY?”

We visited FAO the big toy store you had heard so much about. When you entered you raced straight to the candy section and then up the big escalator to the toys. We told you that you could pick out one toy- whatever you wanted and out of the entire store you ended up with a Star Wars comic book. After FAO we explored the entire Upper East Side stopping only to eat. That evening we took a subway down to Union Square and took you guys to a super crowded restaurant for dinner. But you hung in there and sat through dinner and the crowds. Afterward we grabbed a Mr. Softee ice cream (which you had been asking for since you laid eyes on the night before) for the long walk back to our hotel.

The next day was spent eating street pretzels, riding on a carriage ride through Central Park, visiting the zoo, The Natural History Museum, another trip to FAO and several other shops then topped off with a late dinner in the basement of The Plaza Hotel. It was magical.

Our last day in the city it decided to pour down rain, but that didn’t stop us from heading down to SOHO for breakfast at Balthazars where you dined on a $20.00 pastry basket and were introduced to bathroom attendants. We went to the Children’s Museum of the Arts and you got to explore figure drawing, paint, clay and a very cool room where you were able to create a stop animation video.

The entire trip exceeded our expectations and when it was time to leave you were pretty upset. Since we’ve been back you asked several times when we can return. Your favorite spots seemed in be Central Park. It is pretty spectacular!

 

The Way It Is

May 7, 2013

Dear Roman,

Your school year is almost coming to an end and that revelation is making me reflect on the past months. There’s so much I could write about. You are a complex kiddo with layers and depth just as you have been since the moment we met. At five and a half you are growing and thinking and becoming your own person. It’s such a joy as your mom to watch. Your schedule allows us to spend a lot of our mornings together before school starts. That time spent can often be intense with your demands and critiques. Shuffling you around to Spanish class, swim lessons, soccer… You can get going with constant requests, questions, more requests. But the minute I drop you off at school I miss you. Like really miss you. It’s a lot slower and quieter with you away. Your sister gets to do her thing which is often a whole lot of daydreaming and make believing in her own world. She prefers to be at home and her personality is less intense and demanding. But I often find myself missing the discussions I have with you or the energy you bring. At five and a half you are really growing up. Here’s what life is like:

You are still 100% into Star Wars. You’ve now seen the first two movies and declared that the second was better than the first. We were really surprised that you once again were not scared watching the second film and didn’t have any nightmares and fears. In fact it seemed a lot more enjoyable watching with you than any Disney movie is- those freak you out!

Still crazy into Legos and can put together Lego kits that are well beyond your age level. You don’t require any help and in fact really enjoy building on your own. It’s one of the rare events that will hold your interest for hours.

You’ve also really gotten into drawing and now come up with art that resembles something. Your drawing style looks so much like your dad and the two of you have a passion for the same subject matter- vehicles, battle scenes, droids. But you also draw rainbows and flowers for me or your sister.

You’ve taken interest in writing simple words and enjoy creating cards or notes for me and for your friends.

You still love soccer. It seems to be your sport because it’s so fast paced. You are a crazy fast runner and pretty good at defense. Your coach thinks you have real potential.

You are all about your friends. No real surprise since you’ve been so social since forever, but lately you would rather hang with your friends than play with me. And I understand, friends are so much more fun! You went through a “boys only” friend list for the first part of the year, but are now back into playing with a few girls here and there. For awhile all you would do was want to play “chase the girls” with your buddies, but I’ve noticed lately girls are becoming something of an interest. One little girl in particular you have developed a slight crush on and have declared that the two of you will be getting married. Her name comes up a lot in our house right now.

With friends you love to bike ride, scooter, play chase or tag or hide and seek. You love going to the park and running around with sticks and climbing trees. Playdates have now graduated to drop offs at friends houses and so far from what I can tell when you hang out with you buddies you all love to play with nerf guns shooting foam bullets at targets. I’m totally amazed at how long boys can play target practice.  Besides that some sort of physical outdoor activity is involved.

Every morning you and your sister spend a good amount of time playing together. It’s very special because it’s really the only time the two of you get. Your dad and I hang back and let the two of you play uninterrupted even if breakfast is ready. I just adore listening to the both of you interact together. You still always lead the game, but now Charlotte is very good at participating and coming up with her own ideas. I have to say the both of you have little to no issues working together in the morning. The give and take of play and toys works flawlessly. The evenings when you guys are tired now that’s another story.

Today while I walked you in to class I tried to hug and kiss you to which you replied, “Mom not at school.” This sort of sums up how you’re feeling about Mom. You have real moments of love and affection for me- mainly at home, but when we are out and certainly at school I’m not allowed to be all mom-like. It’s just not cool.

I try to take you on lunch dates every Wednesday before school and while Charlotte is at Nana’s house. This time spent with you is so important to me. It’s just you and me and some food place of your choice. You don’t necessarily talk a lot, but you’ll cuddle up to me or have me read to you. If we do talk it’s just nice to hear what’s on your mind- usually Star Wars related or how much you want to go to DisneyLand or when can you watch a certain movie or when can you play video games because so and so at school gets to.

You’re growing up and it’s apparent. For me I know our time together is now borrowed. You’ll be in full day kindergarten next fall and we will be separated for a longer amount of time than ever. Trust me Roman, this inevitable fact doesn’t leave my train of thought for even a moment. So I’m soaking up our time together. I’m enjoying our swinging sessions in the back yard or our afternoon bike rides together. Trips to the library,  to get frozen yogurt. Walks to the park. Everything is just a little more precious lately.

I love you kid.