Category: Family Life

Meet Sabo. Our newest family member!


Please meet Sabo! He joined our family this afternoon and is VERY happy thus far! His name is pronounced SAY-bo. Sabo is a nearly-one-year-old doggie who hails originally from down south, N’awlins way. He was a stray that was taken in and fostered south of the Mason-Dixon for a few weeks and then transported up to MA via the PHENOMENAL folks at S.H.A.R.E. New England. Sabo is a mutt. We think he has some Chow in him and some Golden Retriever – and who knows what else. We don’t really care much. What we DO care about is that he’s apparently the happiest, cutest, friendliest, loviest creature on the planet! He’s basically a fifty-pound lap dog who can take every bit of affection you can dole out – and then some 🙂 .

Wish us luck!

Meet Milo :-)

About a week or so ago we started foster-parenting Milo. Milo is a two year old boy kitty who started his life in a rough way, on the streets of Boston. When he was found, they thought he was a female kitty ‘cuz he was taking care of an abandoned kitten.


We took him in and are falling in love with him. He has what we refer to as “insta-purr” – the minute you touch him he’s happy as a clam being pet, rubbed, scratched, and otherwise paid attention to. He’s a HUGE galoot running about 20 pounds – and he doesn’t have that much weight to lose – he’s just a big damn cat! He’s a serious sweetheart of a cat. Off-the-charts loving and lovable.

Unfortunately he’s FIV positive – a result of living on the streets for so long. Apparently as much as five percent of the cat population is FIV positive now. It’s not dangerous to humans, but it’s a bummer for all involved. We’re keeping him isolated from the other cats – though he’s had a few carefully-supervised excursions throughout the house.

Pelase say hi! Meow!

No Longer a Grandson :-(

My last grandparent, my maternal grandmother Florence Blongastainer, passed yesterday.

She was 91 years old, and until 18 days ago, she was living on her own, still driving, and happily causing trouble. She grew up during the Great Depression in a family of six kids. As a very sickly child, the doctors told her parents she probably wouldn’t live to be a teenager. She made it just a tad past that ;-). Along the way she brought up two fantastic children, thoroughly enjoyed her six grandchildren, and doted on her fourteen great-grandchildren. I’m extremely grateful that she and my kids got to know each other well. They, like me, are going to miss her a lot.

In 2011 we had a big family party to celebrate her 90th birthday. There are lots of pictures extant that include me with my tongue hangin’ out and a bourbon in my hand. My grandmother however actually possessed some decorum. During the session with the photographer at her 90th, I managed to cajole her to raise her glass and (nearly) stick her tongue out. I’m glad I did, as I really love this picture and will treasure it.

When I shuffle off, I can only hope to be half as fondly-remembered as my grandmother is. Miss you, grammy.

Love Your Children, Love Their Mess!

I’m a bit of a neat-freak, as my friends and family will attest. My desks at home and work are usually quite organized and laid out with their requisite ‘stuff’ in its requisite places. When we moved into our home in mid-2000, before the kids were born, I had the house quite well organized, with everything stored in its requisite, rational places. I knew kids were going to be an amusing assault on my organizational skills and borderline-neatness-OCD 😉 .

I do get occasionally annoyed with extensive messes when it literally looks like bombs went off and you can’t even walk from point A to point B in the house. But luckily, that’s not that common.

The everyday splatter of toys, books, clothing, blankets, computers, iPods, footwear, schoolwork, food – and who the hell knows what else – is comforting to me. It’s kids being kids. It tells me they’re having fun, they’re almost always learning something in their play (legos, books, math and writing workbooks, creative endeavors, etc.), and even if it’s annoying that the living room floor is 30% covered in lego constructs of various flavors, I’m proud of their ability to build cool stuff and enjoy the heck out of that exercise. Each little mess reminds me that they’re kids; that kids play; and that play is good.

This morning I was sitting in the living room, working on my laptop, surveying a crudload of legos, a pile of books, a mess of piano sheet music, and two laptops on one of the couches and on the ottoman. Nothing had been put away. I smiled though – instead of cursing. I love their messes! They signal what they’re up to, what they’re learning, and what’s making them happy. And all that makes me happy!

Besides, how can you get angry at a little monkey this damn cute – even if she is making a mess?!?! 🙂

Cabinet Mess!

Leroy R.I.P. :-(

We lost one of our cats yesterday 😦

Leroy – the old lug, big galoot, golden kitty – called it a day. He had developed a very unpleasant tumor in his throat.

He was a great kitty. We referred to him as the “insta-purr” cat since the second you started showing him any sort of affection, he revved up the purr engine. Although he wasn’t with us long enough, we’re happy we had him in our home for the time we did, and we’re happy we were able to rescue him from the shelter. The kids spent last night and a chunk of this morning making “I miss Leroy” pictures of him.

He will certainly be missed.