August 23 – September 5, 2016

The loneliness of the early park visitor! Linus and Yen have been heading to the park right after breakfast so they can play before it gets too hot. I’m surprised more people haven’t adopted this plan, but as you can see, the park is completely empty.

Linus loves going to the park so much. When he spots one, he begins to scream, “Di! Di! Dididididididi!” How can you say no to that? Yen’s been taking him around to different parks so he can try out different equipment. While it’s sad that there’s not a lot within walking distance, we’re lucky that we have a lot in a short drivable distance. And the truth is our local park isn’t terrible (it’s just across a very busy road).


I don’t know why he hates swings so much, but he still does. He will occasionally let us put him on one, but as soon as it starts swinging, he’s off again immediately. I don’t think it’s motion sickness, but who can say?


This photo represents a huge victory. You see, this was our absolute favorite hat when Linus was a wee thing. I mean, just look at him! When Mina was born, I looked all over for it so she could wear it too, and I couldn’t find it anywhere. I was so sad thinking about not having a photo of her in it. I even asked the people who got Linus’s old clothes whether I’d accidentally given it away. But this week I was digging through the downstairs closet, and there it was! It’s clearly not hat weather yet, but we couldn’t resist. We’ve also decided to save it as a family heirloom. Maybe we will live to see their babies wear it.


Meanwhile, Linus is getting so good at LEGOs. Our habit is to gather in his room on Saturday and Sunday mornings so Yen can sleep in a little. Mina plays with the activity center, and Linus and I build enormous houses out of LEGOs. For a long time I was the only one building while he destroyed, but now he’s really gotten into the act. Thanks to Jenny for the little characters that are riding on this particular car.


Mina loves playing with Linus’s cars and trucks. Usually he allows it. Sometimes he doesn’t. Either way, she’s just incredibly excited.


She practices pulling up and then standing all over the house. Isn’t her Elvis hairstyle the best? And those thighs…


Here’s the park near where we go to swimming lessons (about which more in the next post). We went over to register and just had to stay and play.



We discovered that there’s a huge park right in Billerica. It’s got a playground, but it also has lots of walking trails. I can’t believe we missed it before.

Linus enjoyed the walk because the trail was full of holes. I wish you could hear him say that word. “Hhhhhhole?” It’s always a question after a long and careful exhale.


Hey, Mina loves hiking too!


Linus likes to have quiet time now and then by reading books by himself.


Look at that little strawberry! She’s so good at standing up. I’m terrified of the idea of two kids walking around this house…

Whenever she wants something, she just crawls right over and gets it – no matter how far away it is. She’s extremely fast now.



I think I’ve mentioned before that we make little popsicles for the kids out of juice. They’re very small, and this is the only time they get juice, so I don’t feel too bad about it. Mina especially loves them. Linus calls his “ice cream.”


She’s discovered her tongue lately and pokes it out at random times. It’s so tiny and pink!


Doesn’t her hair remind you of Pebbles from the Flintstones?


Linus crawls into bed with Yen every afternoon now, right when he wakes up from his nap. I asked Yen whether we should get him a big boy bed, and Yen said, “I’m not quite ready for night time visits yet.”



This look on Mina’s face… She gets it so often! It’s as if she just can’t believe what Linus is doing.


Whenever Linus takes a toy away from Mina, I say, “Can you get a toy for her?” He needs to replace what he’s taken away. Usually he rummages around in her box and brings out a baby toy. But this time he offered her one of her cars. That felt to me like a big step. She was delighted, of course. I do wonder when she’ll want dolls, but I’m not in a hurry to make that happen.


Still playing with cars! I think she’s an engineer too.



Best smile ever! I hope that little cheek dimple doesn’t go away. I’ve read that babies often outgrow their dimples. I will be so sad.

And check out her teeth! She’s still just got those two poking out. I’m afraid they’re coming in crooked, but we’ll see.



So proud! I did it! Hey! Hey!


Here are those turkeys again. I think we’ve discovered where they roost at night. I think they may be roaming the neighborhood looking for insects because of the drought. I heard on the news that the lack of water is even killing them.


Poor garden! It really got away from me this year.

I like these two photos because with his helmet on, Linus looks as if he’s landed on an alien planet and he’s observing.


This face!


And again the hair! She’s such a silly girl.


I got new pajamas for Linus – he’s finally moved into 3T! The first night he wore them, he refused to take them off the next morning. He loves the firetrucks.


Lying on the floor, playing with cars in his underwear. As one does!


Linus is very good about sharing his popsicle with Mina. And if he doesn’t feel like sharing, he yells, “Em! Em!” until we get her one of her own.


For Labor Day, we met friends at a state park for a picnic. We let Linus go into the lake before lunch. The water was so much warmer than the ocean!

Hopkinton State Park Labor Day picnic

He just stared at this poor child for several minutes. Luckily the kid seemed unfazed. And as usual, Linus was the only kid with proper sun protection.

Hopkinton State Park Labor Day picnic

It’s official: Linus will wear the family cat costume for Halloween. I wasn’t sure whether he’d like it, but now he asks to put it on every few days. Stay tuned for Mina’s costume… It’s a surprise!




I don’t know why this photo makes me laugh so hard. Linus keeps pretending the Playstation remote is a phone. And here Mina seems to be saying, “Who is it? Is it for me?”


Before Mina was born, I swore I wouldn’t put her in silly dresses. But how can I resist? I don’t do it often, at least. Poor girl can’t crawl when she’s wearing one!


Another picnic with other friends. The weather was so beautiful – which was incredible because the forecast had predicted that the hurricane would hit that day!

BBQ at Renato and Raffella's house

BBQ at Renato and Raffella's house

BBQ at Renato and Raffella's house

I love this photo. I’m so sad that it’s slightly out of focus.

BBQ at Renato and Raffella's house

The place where we picnicked had a little pond that Linus was just obsessed with. We all took turns running down there to haul him away.

BBQ at Renato and Raffella's house

Now that Mina is really crawling, she’s begun to crawl under things, where she just sits and plays by herself. I’m must say that she’s a very self-sufficient baby. I guess that’s the advantage to being second!


Silly Linus. He always wants to put the cement mixer on the couch. Check out those muscles!


These last two photos show the only real impact from the hurricane. I was hoping so hard for a lot of rain, but in the end it was less than an inch.