Monday, July 30, 2007


Clio had a playdate with her friend Abe yesterday (you may remember him as one of the genius finger-painters)and boy did she LOVE his playroom! He has many cool toys, lots of which play music, make noise, or are otherwise animated and therefore the best thing ever. In the end, though, they both decided that they simply had to have the "wheel" piece of a wooden puzzle depicting a vehicle of some kind; there was a bit of a showdown, but eventually they figured out that vehicles have two wheels, and that's enough to go around. As they wound down, Clio joined Abe for his bedtime books. They were both more interested in each other (and the books they were NOT reading) than the book at hand. Throw in Emily and I trying to capture it on film, and here's what you get:

They look kind of guilty, don't they?

Saturday, July 28, 2007

And they call it... puppy love

All this time, I've been wondering about Clio's tendency to hug, kiss, and then bite objects of her affection. Going through old pictures, I started to notice a pattern... Here are some of her favorite friends over the months. Some are spared her fangs, but most meet a toothful fate. The monkey was even dubbed the "make out monkey":

Monday, July 23, 2007

Dog Day Afternoon

We went to my college friend Jeff's house in the Catskills this weekend for a little mountain air and gourmet treatment. (Picture it: two gay men - with Italian mothers - working in the food industry. I'm not sure I've been fed so well over a weekend in my life. And the presentation! I can't begin to tell you.) Clio partook while trying out her new travel high chair, which she seemed to like (although she did bang her head into it's metal support bar perhaps one too many times.)

Jeff and his boyfriend Ryan were the consummate hosts, providing luscious bedding, fabulous background music, over-the-top stories, and the above-mentioned spread. As if that weren't enough, Ryan gave Clio a little Brooklyn Industries sweatshirt in case we hadn't packed appropriately for the cool mountain nights (we hadn't).

Not only was she toasty warm, but we discovered that she really looks like a redhead in a nice, deep plum color. Ryan and Jeff also engaged their youngest guest with noisemakers, sharing tambourines and moroccas for her entertainment,

And letting her roll around on the green flokati rug- a gift from Jeff's mom that finally found it's calling.

Admittedly, the weekend was not without it's one, tiny challenge: Gorgeous Gunther LeRoy. Gunther is Jeff's beloved Shiba Inu, and Clio was terrified by his bark. Now, it's true that Gunther looks slightly wolfish, but Clio shouldn't have any context yet to know that that's scary, right? The bark did her in, though. Every time he made a sound she crumpled into tears; highly unusual for Clio, and not really a trait of the good house guests we strive to be.

(Clio also drank all their milk and ate up the hamburger leftovers that should have gone to Gunther- maybe that's why he was barking?)

At any rate, this was only Clio's second canine encounter. The first, with Dave's friends' Heather and David's dog Mystic, was rather benign. The worst trouble there was Clio and Mystic trying to chew on one another's toys.

By the end of this weekend, Clio was at least charmed and fascinated by Gunther... from the safety of The Mommy's arms.

Unfortunately, this all meant that the baby and the dog had to be separated- one could be outside and one in at all times. We practically didn't put Clio down for 24 hours. When we did, is it any wonder that I look worn out, despite our wonderful hosts?

(Believe it or not, this is actually the BEST picture of me in a series of about a dozen. In one, I am way in the background, and if you look closely you can see that my eyes are fully closed; but I'll save that for the archive!)
(Oh, to be fair, this state of exhaustion can hardly be blamed on Gunther, but it does make for a better story.)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Yeah, yeah, Clio's One.

Okay, so I'm a bit backlogged with content to share, and therefore waaaay off with the timely stuff. You may have noticed in other posts that Clio did in fact turn one (July 5th). My parents were kind enough to throw a lovely party for family and a few friends. In the near future I might manage to post more about this, but for now, Lizzie has shared birthday wishes on her blog, the Hewitt Chronicles. Check out Clio making out with 3 year old Laila (and other fun stuff) here.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


When we first arrived at Maud's family's lake house earlier this month, Maud and Brian told me that 3-year old Lucia was dying to see her cousin Clio, and that she had all sorts of plans to "help her." Here she comes,

Ready to help Clio play.

At the lake, there are lots of activities to help with, from fishing

To rock collecting

To painting.

Lucia also did a great job with general entertainment.

The group took a few bike rides, and Lucia was thrilled to ride together in the burly....

...Helping can be very hard work.

Back in the Cities for Clio's big day, Lucia was a very big help in opening the presents

And showing Clio how to use them.

What an excellent, helpful cousin Lucia is!

Monday, July 16, 2007

No Quiero

So, apparently when Clio was eating lunch today, and sweet potatoes (which she used to love but suddenly loathes) were on emphatic offer, she finally threw up her hands and said "No Quiero."

When Miriam and Alexa were telling me this, there was some confusion. I thought Alexa was just switching into Spanish in her explanation, and asked her to translate. Eventually I figured out that this was not Alexa's interpretation of an action, but that Clio had actually said the words (pronounced "No karo"), meaning "I don't want that."

What a way to start talking.

So you all have a visual of the beloved Miriam, here's a picture at last:

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Baby Pollocks

I happened upon some nice tubes of fingerpaint at Target yesterday; today we had a painting party, which turned out to be the baby version of something out of the 60s, like Woodstock without the music. A users' guide, in case you'd like to try this at home:

First, strip the babies down to their diapers. (In the meantime, take a look at yourself: do you mind if your clothes get covered in painted handprints? )

Now, once you've put down a sheet and some nice big paper on the ground (do this outside!), it's time to get out the paint. Squeeze it out on the paper:

Or directly on the babies, as Dave is doing with Eva here:

Let them have at it!

Our budding artistes include Scarlett:


And Eva:

Now, when the fun runs out (and it will, in about 15 minutes) have a bucket or plastic trash can ready for a quick mudbath (a la Lucia at the lake):

Or just hose 'em down. Clio found the water refreshing:

Finally, get dry on Daddy's pants

And admire your artistic genius: Voila!

I must credit Aunt Maud for the painting inspiration. A true advocate that no child is too young for fabulous activities, she had Clio at the easel as soon as we arrived at the lake before the 4th of July:

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Clio's Maternal Family Tree

Over the 4th of July week, Clio spent some time in Minnesota, getting to know the extended Duggan-O'Shaughnessy clan. We managed to get pictures of her with many of the major players. You should be familiar with some of these characters, but you might not recognize us all relaxed and lake house-ified, so here's a primer:

The Mommy

The Daddy

The Nonny

Papa (or, as Dave says, Pop Pop)

New to the blog, Great Granddad

Uncle Rory (We somehow missed Aunt Nicole, but I'll be sure to point her out in the group shot)

Uncle Brian

Aunt Maud

Cousin Finn

Cousin Lucia (having a "mud bath" after I taught her a little Yyves-Klein style body painting, in case you're wondering about the bucket. Also doing a darn good impression of some of those Depression-era photographs of kids bathing in buckets, only cuter, if such a thing is possible)

And now let's see if we can keep them straight. This is all family who managed to turn out for Clio's 11am birthday party on July 5th (thanks you guys!)

Back row, from left: Papa, Aunt Nicole, Aunt Maud, Nonny, Daddy, Great-Aunt Leeno, Great-Bonnie, Great-Uncle Art, Uncle Brian, cousin Lucia. Front Row, from left: Cousin Finn (getting him out of the pool to take this photo was quite a feat for Brian and Maud), The Mommy and the Guest of Honor, Great-Granddad.

Too bad I don't have pictures from the 4th party- so many second cousins, even I can't keep them straight!