Hello, 2016

2015 was a year of firsts. First birthdays, first teeth, first steps, first words, first stitches. As we begin our adventures in 2016, these spunky 21-month-olds have a LOT to say, and they are ALWAYS on the move. It’s hard to believe that at this time last year, they were still working on sitting up and crawling. They were JUST figuring out how to hold their own bottles. Bottles?! WOW. Time flies. Before we take a peek at what mischief Henry, Jack, and Sophie are currently making, let’s take a look back. A retrospective, if you will.

One year ago: 


It hasn’t gotten any easier to get pictures of all three of them together, but at least they can get up and down off the couch by themselves. And most times this doesn’t result in stitches ūüôā




Favorite Past Times: Drawing, Mixing, Cooking, Sliding, Wagon Riding, Cleaning, Shape Sorting, FaceTiming, Taking Out the Trash, Bouncing, Cuddling, and Splashing in the Tub!



Favorite Past Times: Climbing, Bouncing, Cleaning, Climbing, Sliding, Wagon Riding, Climbing, FaceTiming, Sorting the Laundry, Throwing Away the Diapers, Taking Off his Clothes, Bouncing, Jumping, and Splashing in the Tub!



Favorite Past Times:¬†Singing, Reading, Playing “Row, Row, Row, Your Boat,” Hiding, Twirling, Taking Care of Baby, Swinging, Tackling her Brothers, Talking on the Phone, Bouncing, and Splashing in the Tub.

A Few of Our Favorite Things:¬†Lights, Dinos, Fisher Price Little People, Cell Phones, Our Wagon, Our Laptops, Elmo, Mac ‘N Cheese, Shape Sorter, Cardboard Boxes (they make great boats!), Flash Cards (calm down, people, these are just cards with pictures of things they know on them), The Zoo, The Natural History Museum, Singing*, Basketballs, Soccer Balls, Baby Dolls, Stickers, Monkeys!

*Our favorite songs of the moment (the list is long, so it deserves its own section): “We Wish You a Merry Christmas,” “The ABC Song,” “Moon, Moon, Moon,” “Tender Shepherd,” “Jingle Bells,” “Rain, Rain, Go Away,” “It’s Raining, It’s Pouring”

Christmas lights, headlights, overhead lights, lamps, they don’t discriminate. They are ALL wondrous. And these kiddos are finally starting to learn the difference between “On” and “Off.”

2015-11-29 18.19.24

So excited the first night they finally turned the lights on outside on our block!



A little less excited at the Rockefeller Center tree. What were we thinking?


Working with the shape sorter is serious business. It usually requires that everyone involved gets down on their tummy and looks very closely at each of the shapes while he or she works. It is often accompanied with demands such as, “Daddy, lie down!”


Elmo is a new development. A few weeks ago on a particularly long and dreary Sunday, I decided to fire up PBS Kids and give it a go. Instant fans. Although we definitely don’t understand that there are different characters and they are not ALL named Elmo, and we definitely seem to think Elmo (and all of his friends, the other Elmos) live in every television set everywhere. ¬†Also, Sophie is way more hooked than her brothers. Or just has a longer attention span.



Sometimes we have the patience and attention to sit and watch Elmo together. Sometimes.


You know, just another Monday morning at the office. Emails to read, reports to write, the usual.


It’s never to early to start chores.


Doing the laundry. 

Here they are “cleaning.” Can you find Jack?


Sometimes, they are TOO helpful.


That’s a wet wipe in Henry’s hand.


Here they are cleaning the windows. Oy vey.


Don’t worry. We moved the couch.



The Children’s Museum of the East End




The Playground. 






More Climbing:

This is what happens whenever he hears the word “dinner” (or “breakfast” or “lunch”). I guess it’s a useful skill?

A typical Saturday


A “Family Photo” at the zoo. Can you find all five of us?¬†

And lest you think they are always helpful and never mischievous, I am here to set the record straight. They ARE toddlers after all.



On the Twelfth Day of Christmas…

On the first day of Christmas, Nana gave¬†to me (us), a¬†kitchen that’s perfect for three.

On the second day of Christmas, Grammie gave to me (us)¬†two tables with chairs…

..and¬†our¬†kitchen that’s perfect for three.

In the interest of time (mine and yours), I’ll skip to the end and work backwards.

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my family gave to me…

Twelve carolers caroling


(nine adults not pictured)

Eleven juicy gumdrops


Ten molars piercing


Nine Christmas cookies


We only just discovered cookies of any kind. It’s our new favorite word, and we’re pretty sure it has at least eleven o’s (“coooooooooookie”)! This is what a toddler looks like on Christmas cookies. They should consume at their parents’ own risk.¬†

Eight planes and ‘copters


Seven hours opening presents*

Round 1: Stockings


Reaching inside and pulling something (anything) out was more exiting than the presents themselves. It didn’t matter whose stocking it was or whether or not they’d already pulled out that fake waffle before.¬†

Round Two: Under the Tree

Round Three (post-nap): Things that didn’t fit under the tree/things we were too cranky/tired/hungry to open before lunch.

Round Four: Ready for bed and we still had presents left to open



* The seven hours is legit, but it includes nine adults opening presents during naptime and a half an hour or so of presents at Baba’s on Christmas Eve.

Six(teen) hundred feet climbed

Five forehead stitches!

Four celebrations

  • with Nana and Grumples
  • with Baba and her crew


  • with (great) Grandma and her crew



We discovered (great) Grandma’s room shortly before we left and shortly after our second helping of sugar cookies.¬†


  • with Grammie, Nonno and the Strumolo aunts and uncles

Three mini scooters


Two tables with chairs

…and a kitchen that’s perfect for three.

Phew. What a day (week? two weeks?)! Christmas is hands-down my favorite holiday, but it is made triply more enjoyable by the presence of these three kiddos. I can’t wait until next year!