November 4, 2018 § 2 Comments
It’s been one week since my Dad suddenly passed away. It’s been a crazy week with every moment claimed by planning for his funeral and then Henry’s fifth birthday party, but now that things have calmed down, I wanted to share and save the eulogy that Jenn, Ryan, and I gave on Thursday. The officiant of the service, Tonia, basically told the three of us that we’d be writing and delivering the eulogy and at first we were like “Us??? But didn’t we just hire you for that?” And then she phrased it perfectly: this would be the final gift we could give our Dad.
It was really something to put our energy into writing the perfect piece about Dad and putting together the perfect slideshow to represent his 63 years. Here’s what we said and some photos from the slideshow.
July 22, 2016 § 1 Comment
Six years ago today, this happened.
Which led to six years of things happening…
And tonight, we will go out for dinner, get Big Gay Ice Cream, and walk the High Line together.
Happy anniversary, Nick. There’s no one else I’d rather spend 10 hours with in a car with a toddler twice a year, lie in bed beside and watch Netflix at the end of the day, and over-plan life decisions with ;) I love you!
January 7, 2016 § Leave a comment
Better late than never, here’s a look at this Christmas’ adventures and events!
Since our summer drive to Canada went pretty well, we decided to do the same thing for Christmas rather than fly there.
This time, we stopped in Syracuse to visit our friend Matt and to let Henry run around a mall (he wanted to buy all the dog calendars from one kiosk), but then we kept driving until we reached Watertown, New York and spent the night in a hotel.
We left fairly early the next morning (delayed only by Henry falling into some carpet glue workers were putting down right outside the elevator doors when they opened. *eye roll*) and then finished our drive to my parents’ cottage in Fenelon Falls, Ontario.
Usually, by the time Christmas comes around, the cottage is covered in snow and it’s very cold. This year we were very lucky to have warmer than normal temperatures. Henry was thrilled to still be able to play in the sandbox every day!
Our first night there, Henry scaled himself right out of the crib. We all stood around stunned for a while, then gave into the fact that I’d be sharing a bed with a toddler for the week. Look at those shifty eyes! He knew what he was doing.
The next afternoon, we had a visit from my friend Eli and his two sons!
Their mom was on-call midwife duty for the week and so the guys rented a mini van and drove all the way up to hang out with us. I was so glad to see them and that our kids could finally meet!
Arlo and Henry are starting a truck-themed kid band.
The next day was Christmas Eve. For the first time since my parents moved up to the cottage full-time, our family had our Christmas celebration there instead of at my sister’s place. With 5 grand kids, 3 of us “kids”, spouses, grandparents, and my parents, it was a full house.
It was fun to see Henry really get into Christmas this year. He still doesn’t know the Santa story, but was really excited to open all of his presents.
Jillian the veterinarian.
A coupla handsome Miller men.
The kids had an unplanned black t-shirt and blue jeans dress code. The twins did not want mom to put them down.
Colouring trucks with uncle Ryan and aunt Suzanne.
And some calm once 5 grand kids were reduced to just one.
As per our now Christmas Day tradition, we met Julia, Jay, and Blake in Oshawa. This is our third year of meeting up on Christmas Day and having our little dudes play!
We got to catch up while the little dudes shared snacks, toys, high fives and amazing hair tips.
We spent the last day at the cottage with my parents. It was so nice to see them and to see how Henry really remembers them every visit now. He really took to my dad this time! Grandpa got many, many hugs.
It was great to see everyone and to have Henry spend so much time with family and friends. Before long, he’s going to be asking when he gets to go to the cottage again, just like his cousins :)
Happy 2nd birthday, Henry!
November 4, 2015 § Leave a comment
This past weekend, we got to celebrate Halloween and Henry’s second birthday!
Grandpa Storch made a special trip from Pennsylvania to celebrate with us and our little monkey.
Since Henry’s still a bit young for trick-or-treating (plus he doesn’t like candy), we spent the afternoon at Social Pants‘ Halloween party at Greenpoint’s McGolrick Park. They did a great job! We saw so many amazing costumes!
Including Henry’s Curious George, which we weren’t sure if he’d actually wear, but was a very good sport about putting it on for a few hours.
On Sunday, we had an apartment full of people for Henry’s birthday party.
Since all of his invited two year olds buddies besides little Zack couldn’t make it, it ended up being mostly adults, plus Henry’s BFF, 8 year old Caylan, and 2 month old Eloise. It was a nice balance though – very manageable!
Henry handled being serenaded with the birthday song from about 20 people very well and enjoyed eating just the strawberry from the top of his birthday cupcake.
This gift-giving event was the most prosperous to date in Henry’s short life. Our apartment is officially covered in trucks of all types and sizes! Here he is, eating his dinner after the party with his new bulldozer.
Thanks to everyone who came out to celebrate, and loved ones who made that extra effort to send Henry their best wishes in the mail. We love you! Here’s to our third year of #DailyHank!
Road Trip to Canada
September 8, 2015 § Leave a comment
I don’t know if you noticed, but we were away in Canada at my parents’ comfy cottage last week! Here’s some photos and commentary if you’re interested in our first road trip with Henry…
After renting a car from Laguardia airport, we left our apartment Friday morning to do the first half of the 10 hour drive. Henry hadn’t been in a car since December and was pretty much horrified at the thought of getting into his car seat. After much encouragement from us and even our doorman, we gave him some cheezies to munch on and he gave into a nap.
We stopped in Syracuse for the night and met up with our friend Matt, who took us to the State Fair that evening. Henry got to see goats, llamas, pigs, and chickens, and run around the bright lights and giant stuffed animals. He was very excited about the blimp floating over the fair and got to eat salty, deep-fried chicken fingers (probably much more delicious than the multigrain breaded organic kind from home ;)).
We left our hotel Saturday morning and arrived in Oshawa for my twin niece & nephew’s first birthday party that afternoon. It worked out very well that we got to see my sister’s family before heading to my parents’ and Henry got to enjoy running around with other kids (and toy cars) before spending another 1.5 hours in the car.
Henry seemed to settle into the cottage faster than ever once we arrived, even playing us some guitar and enjoying our applause.
Since we were on vacation, we let Henry stay up late and in turn, he’d sleep later than usual in the mornings. One day, he even slept until 10:00! (He was up for an hour and a half in the middle of the night, BUT STILL.)
Our days at the cottage were glorious. Grandpa cuddles…
Enjoying a new selection of toy cars and tiny plastic animals…
Feeding chipmunks and blue jays peanuts…
Visits from family…
Serious sandbox time…
Visiting Fenelon Falls’ beach and ice cream shops…
And one day, my dad arranged for us to visit the local fire hall. Having a grandpa on city council has its benefits!
A huge thank you to my parents for taking care of us for a week! And thanks to all my family who came for a visit. It was so great to see you!
Now to plan our Christmas road trip…
A Quick Solo Trip To Toronto
July 27, 2015 § Leave a comment
This weekend, I took my second solo trip since Henry was born! I flew to Toronto Saturday morning and enjoyed reading, eating, and listening to music – basically a trip to the spa compared to flying with a small child ;)
I arrived downtown Toronto around 1:30 and met Sarah and Julia for a late lunch at Fresh, of course. Then they took me to a few cute new shops around Queen & Roncesvalles, including North Standard Trading Post. I’d been meaning to get Henry one of their cute hoodies and treated myself to a few things as well including one of Tami Noa Levy‘s provincial animal series prints.
Sarah hosted a few lady friends at her new house for cheese and snacks before we all headed out to dinner at Burdock. Her and Phil’s new place is very cute and the cheese was delicious! It was great to see more examples of the homes my friends are starting to own in Toronto because Nick & I are getting very used to the idea (and starting to plan) how to do the same thing in a year or two!
After dinner, we headed down the street to Bar Neon where Mike, Rob, and Tristan came to meet up with us.
Although it was only one afternoon and evening of spending time together, I appreciate any time I get to hang out with some of my favourite people in the world. Especially one pregnant Sarah Curtis! That night, my sister Jenn came to meet me for a sleepover at my hotel and although I didn’t get back there til 11:30, we still stayed up for a few hours chatting. I’ll take whatever I can get!
The next morning, I met my brother Ryan for breakfast at The Beast. After eating the giant plates of food and maple bacon donuts, I agree that it is aptly named!
After I left Ryan, I made one last attempt to enjoy the weak Canadian dollar before I went to the airport to fly home. Let’s just say, I am set for both yoga shorts and Canadian Dairy Milk for a while!
It was really nice to get away, even for just one night, but also wonderful to return home to these two guys. I got the best Henry hugs ever when I walked in the door!
See you again soon, Toronto!
The First Five Years
July 22, 2015 § Leave a comment
Nick and I said “I do!” at NYC’s City Hall 5 years ago today. That’s half a decade of marriage, people!
I feel very fortunate to have found the person I’m meant to spend the rest of my life with. In the past five years, I have experienced Nick’s generosity and love and his remarkable problem solving skills whenever we encounter a challenge, which happens often now that we are parents! Although we rarely argue, we have perfected the Art of the Argue in a way that always comes to some kind of solution or understanding. While we love being able to travel and do things together, we also both enjoy a good chunk of time spent on the couch, him watching baseball while I read, or just talking. We both have our own interests, as well as shared ones, but respect each other’s hobbies and passions. We can lean on each other when the other needs support, and I think that so far, we are kicking ass at parenthood! ;)
Here’s a look back at our first five years of marriage, if you’d like to see.
I love you more than you’ll ever know, Nick. Here’s to the next five years!
June 2, 2015 § Leave a comment
After a very wintry winter, it’s finally a summery spring and the visitors have been coming in droves! Every day, I see what I assume are parents of Brooklynites being led around Greenpoint and taken out to cute restaurants for brunch.
This past weekend, Nick and I enjoyed an evening with one of our favourite couples/fellow parents, Kate and Bryan. We ate a ton of Indian food and had a few drinks afterwards at Habitat, so that Bryan could watch the hockey game while the ladies caught up.
The next morning, my parents arrived!
Despite having not seen his grandparents since Christmas, Henry jumped right in to giving them hugs, kisses, and playing with them. He’s usually a very cautious boy who takes a minute to warm up to any visitor. Maybe it’s the Pinhole Press family picture book we made for him or maybe he can just tell they’re important people – or maybe he just remembers them! Either way, he knew they were special enough to bypass all the usual courting he requires.
We all went out to lunch at our favourite neighborhood sandwich spot, Eagle Trading Company, then went to the playground so Henry could show Grandma and Grandpa how good he is at playing in the splash pad.
Henry usually NEVER wants to hold hands, by the way.
My Mom is an amazing Grandma – she got Henry to lie still with her on the couch for quite a while by rubbing his back while he held his school bus. It was very sweet.
On Sunday we had lunch at Brooklyn Label before they had to head to the airport. Henry enjoyed both his grandparents’ company and the ceiling fan overhead.
Although Sunday’s storm gave them some serious delays (and cancellations), I’m so glad they came to visit. Next time we see them will be in August, when we will take our first road trip with Henry to drive to their cottage!
Impromptu Photo Shoots
May 21, 2015 § Leave a comment
Unplanned photo shoots – aren’t they always the best ones?
I love the photos my DSLR takes with its 50mm lens, but since Henry became mobile, it’s been more challenging to shoot manually. Then the other night after dinner, I found a school bus I’d hidden in my dresser because Henry was trying to eat the wheels off it. Now that he’s a bit older (and less likely to eat a choking hazard), he was completely enchanted with the bus, driving it around the windowsill of his bedroom.
Then… Dad came home!
Nick had his usual after work snack: Henry’s belly.
And then things got sweet.
This horseplay is a wonderful nightly occurrence, but it looks even better on camera :)
Some Daily Hank
March 12, 2015 § Leave a comment
It’s been a few months in between Henry updates, so after taking the first DSLR photos I’ve been able to snap of him since he started walking, I thought this would be a good time for one!
Little Hank here is about 16.5 months old. His baby days are long gone! It’s amazing to see his skills and interests constantly evolving. He’s traded in his former favourite toy – the plastic bottle – for megablocks and little wooden animals.
He has quite a few wooden puzzles of animals, dinosaurs, and various vehicles that he can now put in their proper spots. He can stack and nest cups, play with his megablocks, and use a fork very well!
We now let him watch a little TV each day, because when it’s an ungodly hour in the morning, you need to watch Thomas & Friends and cuddle. He’s also started watching some Baby First TV right before dinner and his waving, clapping, pointing, and other skills have actually improved.
We are currently in an exhausted limbo, waiting for his final fourth teeth, the incisors, to come in. Early mornings and midnight wakings are our current state. The photo above shows his “Muppet face” which lets us know his teeth are really driving him crazy.
Henry may be deep into toddlerhood by asserting his opinions and letting you know when he is NOT happy, but he really is such a joy. After a toddler meltdown, he’ll eventually calm and look you in the eyes and smile (maybe even do a little butt wiggling dance) and all is forgiven :)