Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Jasper got the last of his early-childhood vaccinations Friday. Four shots! We were a little behind. I am ambivalent about these immunizations becasue I have a friend whose son is autistic (she believes it was caused by thimerisol in his vaccines) and because four different shots is a lot of funky juice to be running around a small boy's system at the same time. But they are required by the state and I plan to enroll him in pre-K later this winter, so...

Jasper was brave and took it well. Actually, he screamed his head off.

It was traumatic and afterwards we went home and ate a lot of ice cream. Both of us. The next day Jasper's legs were sore so we spent the day at home. He seemed fine, though way less energetic than usual. Sunday was spent in sloth as well, with one leg still sore. Finally, by Monday, he was back to his usual self.

Since it was horribly cold I thought we should go see a movie. (Museums are typically crowded on holidays.) I trudged uphill 20 blocks in the cold, giving myself a mild asthma attack, just to find out our movie had sold out. Bah! Jasper's next idea was to play in the park. This is what we should have done in the first place, considering how little exercise we got the previous days. We had a grand, though chilly, afternoon exploring Mars, trying out alien spaceships, and collecting rock and other samples from volcanoes.

Jasper took these photos by himself while I was cooking dinner

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

4th Birthday Party

Do I really have a four-year-old now?

We had a fun party Sunday. Somehow we managed to get the perfect number and age range of kids in our tiny apartment. Most of the time the kids had fun just playing with Jasper's toys, but there were a few games and some treats as well.

I know a pooh-pooh'ed the Space Shuttle as a party theme in my other blog. Least you think we are not fans of the Space Shuttle, Jasper has accumulated at least four in the past few weeks, including one made of Lego-like bricks. I just wanted to expand beyond that black and white color scheme. By the way, I had a dream last night that I was taking a science class taught by David Bowie -- something about epistemology, the body, space.

Anyway, that's not what you're here for. You're here for pictures! Many thanks to Margaret who had the presence of mind to pick up the camera and snap away. If it weren't for her we wouldn't have any images at all!

By the way -- no pictures of our guests because I felt awkward about asking permission. What would you say if I asked if I could post pictures of your kid on the Internets? Parents are getting really cautious.

Space games

You've heard about how getting organized activities going at a kid's party is like herding cats? That's why I organized only two.

The first was "Pin the planet in the solar system." The idea was that we would blindfold each child and let them guess where the planet goes. Then we could talk about where the planet really goes, but not move it because the fun is putting it in a silly place. I soon discarded the blindfolding and the one-at-a-time and just let them have at it, handing out planets and asteroids. As a result we have a funky picture to hang on Jasper's wall.

The second activity was making aliens out of dough (Crayola's model magic, which doesn't crumble), pipe cleaners, googly eyes, markers, and glitter glue. A lot of the aliens came out looking like the one below only filled with glitter and color. Jasper made a minimalist alien which you can see in his hand on my other blog.

At the end we popped confetti crackers which are, actually, kind of dangerous. Note the look of sheer terror on my face.

Birthday boy

On Jasper's birthday we went to the museum, saw Dinosaurs Alive! and made pizzas for dinner. Dad brought home some special treats, ice cream and Izzy sodas.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

We are all made of stars

I may have mentioned that we make a trip to the museum of natural history/planetarium nearly ever week. Jasper and I love it there (so does Lane, when he can make it). Jasper was browsing through his Internet bookmarks a few weeks ago and discovered Sonic Vision -- the music and laser show at the planetarium. (Do they even call them laser shows anymore?) He became obsessed and would watch the preview over and over again. Then he started asking to see the show over and over again. So we finally took him.

Boy these things have come a long way since the Led Zeppelin/Pink Floyd spiralgraph doodles of my youth. Jasper loved it -- loud music! Dancing robots! Floating eyeballs! The first thing he said when it was over was "we have to see this again!"

I think we will go again -- probably several times. What a jaded young man we're raising here in New York City. He'll be sick of it by the time he's five and start writing letters to the museum to come up with a new show. But for now he'll have to make do with watching the previews online.

Speaking of online, Jasper loves playing kid's Internet games and watching You Tube cartoons (SUPERVISED, OF COURSE). This has prompted me to hatch an evil plan. I keep thinking about all the work and writing I could get done if only we had another laptop. So I bought Jasper his own laptop from the One Laptop Per Child program. There are so many reasons to love this program and the innovative laptop itself, but I still can't believe I've purchased a computer for an almost-four-year-old. Is this going to turn him into a 'net potato? Nevertheless, it should arrive sometime later this month and I CAN'T WAIT to have my laptop back to myself. That is, until Lane comes home.

The glory of it all