Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas!

Tristan's first Christmas was a lot of fun for all involved. He seemed to enjoy unwrapping gifts as much as he enjoyed playing with the boxes after the fact.

Boru seemed to get into the spirit of things as well.

And Tristan doesn't yet know that books are boring gifts. (Ah, the innocence of youth!)

Once he got to Grandma and Grandpa's house, the number of gifts were pretty overwhelming:

And when all was done, Tristan was able to relax by the fire:

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Empty Stocking

This is a very touching sermon from "The Bishop's Wife". It seems quite appropriate for the season:

"Tonight I want to tell you the story of an empty stocking. Once upon a midnight clear, there was a child’s cry. A blazing star hung over a stable and wise men came with birthday gifts. We haven’t forgotten that night down the centuries; we celebrate it with stars on Christmas trees, the sound of bells and with gifts—but especially with gifts. You give me a book; I give you a tie. Aunt Martha has always wanted an orange squeezer and Uncle Henry could do with a new pipe. We forget nobody, adult or child. All the stockings are filled...all that is, except one. And we have even forgotten to hang it up. The stocking for the Child born in a manger. It’s His birthday we are celebrating. Don’t ever let us forget that. Let us ask ourselves what He would wish for most and then let each put in his share: loving kindness, warm hearts and the stretched-out hand of tolerance. All the shining gifts that make peace on earth."

Monday, December 18, 2006

Tree Trimming in Kent

Tristan's good friend Rory once again invited the Paynes up for a visit to Maple Stone, his family farm in Kent, CT.

The weekend involved helping Rory's dad steady the tree and collect logs for the fire. Tristan really appreciated the logs...and the resultant fire. He seemed to enjoy it more than Sesame Street.

Rory's 6'6" dad makes the tree look much smaller than it really is. The 13" tree was about as wide as it was tall. All the adults had a great time decorating the tree while visions of sugar plums danced through the heads of the sleeping babies.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Late Night Pasketti

Pasta was on the menu after a nocturnal visit to the Bronx Zoo. Tristan celebrated his 9 month birthday with a trip to the Holiday Lights display at New York's famous zoo. The visit was a gift of cousins Bobby and Danielle.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Monday, December 11, 2006

Baby Ennui

The boy is quite the character. Or so says his mom. This morning while being fed, his facial gestures and body language seemed to indicate a profound sense of boredom. Usually, Tristan finds something exciting to explore in everything and anything. This morning, however, while examining the velvety texture of his reindeer bib, he seemed to discover ennui. It passed as soon as his mother entered the room, but lasted long enough that she noted it as well, providing his dad with the satisfaction that he was not inventing emotions for his almost nine month old son.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Saturday, December 2, 2006

Buying a Christmas Tree

Jennifer, Tom and Tristan travelled to Danbury to get their ornaments out of storage...and along the way picked up a Christmas Tree at Stew Leonard's.

The group finally settled on a "cute" 12 foot balsam. Friends are encouraged to come over for a visit to see the tree completely decorated.

Friday, December 1, 2006

A Visit with St. Nick

Tristan spent the afternoon with his mom and grandmother gathering supplies for an event Jennifer was planning at the Junior League. Along the way, they ran into the jolly old elf himself at the Palisade Center in Rockland County.

Tristan explained to Santa that he would like peace in the world...and an Official Red Ryder Carbine-Action Two-Hundred-Shot Range Model Air Rifle...but Santa said he would shoot his eye out.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Making of a Christmas Card

This year, since we had such a cute subject, Jennifer agreed to send out a photo card for Christmas. We took Tristan off to the Katharine Hepburn Garden in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza. There were several different great spots for pictures, but when we got back to review the shots, the best one was of him on the life-sized elk statue.

Now the problem was that while Jennifer agreed to have Tristan in the picture, she didn't think anyone would want a picture of her on their fridge throughout the holiday season. Tom tried to convince her that she was sorely mistaken, but she woundn't budge. So a couple of attempts in Photoshop later, and Jennifer was removed from the picture. Sort of erie, but cool at the same time.

+ =

Tuesday, November 28, 2006


When the Thanksgiving groceries arrived from FreshDirect, Tristan discovered a new toy that gave him hours (ok, minutes) of fun. What can be better than a "baby-in-a-box"?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Tristan wants you to be an OSU fan!

Jennifer's friend Marsha came to visit during the big Ohio State vs Michigan game. To ensure that Tristan was cheering on the correct team, Marsha brought him a special outfit:

...and he wants you to cheer on Ohio. (Actually, it's too late. Ohio won.)

Tristan's First Bus Ride

Tristan was in a car the first week of his life..and on a subway not long after that. But for some reason, he hadn't been on a city bus until today. His first trip was southbound on 2nd Avenue aboard the M15. As an extra special treat, the trip was one of those extra long flex models.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Grandma's complaint: Not enough pictures of Tristan

Tristan's Grandma Laraine has set her homepage at work to this blog. The trouble is, she points out, that there are too many pictures of Tristan's friends lately...and not enough of Tristan. Well, as many of you know, Tristan is one of the world's most photographed baby, so this is not due to a lack of subject matter.

Here are some of the latest pix to satisfy Grandma's complaint:

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Ronan's 1st Birthday

Tristan and his good buddy Stephen helped their friend Ronan celebrate his 1st birthday with his family. Ronan's mom made him a cake in the shape of a green snake. It was this hit of the party. (Ronan certainly seemed to enjoy it!)

Sunday, November 5, 2006

BabyBites Weekend

Tristan's friend Rory invited a number of friends (and their parents) to his house in Kent, CT for the weekend. Below, Aiden, Sophie and Jacob joined Rory and Tristan on the couch for a group picture celebrating the successful get together.

Rory's mom and dad served a wonderful meal and much wonderful wine. Breakfast the next day was a group effort...and featured Jennifer's blueberry and banana/nut/chocolate muffins.

Saturday, November 4, 2006

Steven's dad makes partner

Tristan's friend Steven helped to celebrate his dad's promotion to partner at his law firm. Steven's mom, Rosemay, threw a very nice siore at Blue Water Grill, near New York's Union Squre.

The cake was nice...but Jennifer and Tom were seen making multiple trips to the oyster adorned raw bar.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

The Buzz continues...

Tristan's first Halloween was spent at New York's Tavern on the Green celebrating with his friends from Baby Bites.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

The Buzz about Tristan's Costume

Tristan participated in his first costume contest in Central Park this weekend. The fix must have been in, since Tristan got the loudest applause when the MC placed his hand over his head...but someone else one the enormous Sponge Bob doll. Kind of a blessing when you think of it.

While in costume, Tristan was able to act as a "spokes-bee" for the natural honey vendor...and meet some of his Peeps (this is a real pun since he got to see some honeybees in a portable honeycomb and also got some mashmallow Peeps from the Parks people.)

Monday, October 23, 2006

Tom gets quoted in the NY Post


October 23, 2006 -- Bureaucratic bungling, incompetence and old-fashioned greed have short-circuited a plan to install free wi-fi in city parks, critics charge.

Two years ago, the city Department of Parks and Recreation awarded a contract to set up wireless Internet access in 10 city parks, but to date, only two of those parks are up and running.

Parks spokesman Ashe Reardon conceded that only a handful of "hot spots" in Central Park currently work. Wi-Fi Salon, the company awarded the contract two years ago to take the parks wireless, claims Battery Park also is online.

"It's been a long process," said Reardon. "But we're working on it."

City Councilwoman Gale Brewer told The Post she's "frustrated" by the situation and blasted the Parks Department as "technologically challenged."

Wi-fi activists also are fed up.

"No one at the top of the Parks Department food chain knows anything about wi-fi or the Internet," said Dana Spiegel, the executive director of NYC Wireless, a volunteer group.

In one case, she said, the department demanded a $1.5 million insurance policy from the community group Friends of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza after it said it wanted to install a free hot spot there.

"I don't know what liability the city was worried about," said Friends director Tom Payne. "That the antenna would fall on somebody's head?"

In another example of bureaucratic bungling, a firm building Philadelphia's free, citywide wireless network offered to construct a hot spot in Fort Greene Park in Brooklyn at no cost to the city - but the department held it up, critics said.

Sources inside and outside city government charge that the department is dragging its feet in order to sign up corporate sponsors - and pump revenue out of them.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Tristan has 6...teeth

When Jen and Tom returned from their trip to New Orleans, Jennifer noted that her wonder boy had a new tooth...number 5. But during a later feeding, dad Tom did some checking of his own and found number 6.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

A Big Easy Wedding

Jen's friend Laurie spent most of her holidays at Grandma McNeely's in New Orleans. So when it was time to get married, Laurie and fiance Richard thought is would be cool to get hitched in the Big Easy. and boy did they do things right. A Creole Shrimp Boil at Grandma's...a balcony hospitality suite overlooking Bourbon Street...and a ceremony and reception at a classic Southern Plantation house.

Apart from the highpoints, the torrential rain and the bus with a flat tire will certainly be memories that last a lifetime. Best wished to Laurie and Rich!

Monday, October 16, 2006

Tristan turns 7

...months, that is. To celebrate, he put on his new "Rensselaer" shirt. It's size "18 months" and is already a little small. This is gonna be trouble.

Sunday, October 8, 2006

Fall Foliage in Harriman

This weekend saw the leaves changing in Harriman State Park...and Jen, Tom and friends hiking once again to the lake at the end of the "red" trail.

Friends Jeannette and Rob took some pictures, too. Click here to see those

Thursday, September 28, 2006

'git along little doggie

Tristan took his first pony ride today. There was a fair at the Dominican grounds in Orangeburg, near his grandparent's house.

This was also the start of Tristan's first full night away from mom and dad. He spent the night at grandma and grandpa's house. All went well...he didn't seem skip a beat.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Office

Jennifer surprised Tom with a surprise visit to the office with Tristan. In order to give dad a break, Tristan took over for a while...

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Ashley's Baptism

Tristan's friend Ashley was welcomed into the Christian community today at her Baptism. Family, friends and proud parents Donny and Susan were there to support her.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

BBQ at Steve and Sanja's

Later on in the day, Jen, Tom and Tristan traveled to the hinter lands of New Jersey with friends Richard and Meredith to see Steve and Sanja. There were lots of friends and family...and tons of food. The hit of the party was the batch of margharitas with a secret (Odd as that sound, it was pretty good...and quite popular.)

Tristan's mom had fun showing him the finer point of a proper football grip...while her mind was drifting off the the horse barn on the property next door.