Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas, Part II (and Jennifer's Birthday)

Christmas continued for several days this year...and merged into Jennifer's Birthday. Happy Birthday, Jen!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

William wasn't really prepared for Christmas morning, but Tristan had been waiting for it for the past two months. I don't think either were disappointed. From all appearances, Santa was not impacted by the recession.


The morning was spent opening gifts at home and then we all gathered at Grandma and Pop-pops for additional gifts...and food. At one point, Boru was able to settle in for a well needed rest.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Snow Day!

With the first major snow storm of 2008, the boys had an opportunity to try out their new sled.

Dad had to go our an buy a new sled. There are three of them in the garage (this makes four), but they are of the old "Flexible Flyer" variety and need a bit of work. This new plastic sled is just right (as long as Tristan isn't applying the brakes while dad is trying to pull them around the yard).

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Swim Class

No, we didn't invest in a new underwater camera. This is what happens when you bring a cld camera into a warm indoor pool. You need to wipe the lens free of the fog.

It is clear here that William is enjoying his swim class! You never would have known that we trudged though ice and slush to make it to the pool.

Friday, December 19, 2008


Just got back from haircuts, gas fillup and ice melt run. Started snowing as we left the barbershop. Tristan and William both sat on Joe's chair by themselves...and then played around the store like little gentlemen while I got my hair cut. (I initially was going to put William on my lap while I got my hair cut, but Joe insisted that I let him wander). Everyone thought they were adorable...especially when Tristan noted that he was now "cute for Christmas". Then Tristan threw a tantrum because he didn't want to leave.

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Little Drummer Boy

Over Thanksgiving break, Tristan received some drumming lessons from cousins Chris and Mikey.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Turkeyday in Rochester

Thanksgiving 2008 was spent in Rochester visiting with Jennifer's cousin Kris and family. Kris stocked the house with toys for the boys and food for everyone.

The drive up was pretty uneventful. There was some snow along the way, but nothing to stop us from proceding. The roof rack did spring a leak and we needed to use Kris' dryer after we unpacked, but with two boys, we figured we would be using the washer and dryer throughout the trip...not to mention the occasional spot remover on the white carpets.

Mikey, our cousin attending West Point, came up to visit Kris' boys (a little more age-appropriate than Tristan and William). Mikey insisted on helping with dinner, staking a claim to the mashed potatoes and gravy.  We all got a kick out of the West Point cadet spending his vacation peeling potatoes.

Christopher took a break from his studies at RIT (and playing Rock Band 2) to teach Tristan the subtleties of storming a castle:

William had a blast playing ball with Kris. And Kris doesn't provide just your run of the mill ball. Her's is basically twice the size of William!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Ragamuffin Parade

This year's Ragamuffin Parade featured the debut of Tristan and William's costumes for 2008. Tristan long ago decided that he wanted to be Captain Hook and that his little brother should be Peter Pan. Dad joined in by donning a crocodile hat and an enormous alarm clock. Mom volunteered to be TinkerBell, but decided that the temperature was far too close to freezing to wear fairy wings.

This picture was taken by the town photographer...and we are looking forward to seeing our segment on local public accesss television.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


On another visit to Kent, Tristan and William discover the joy of leaves.

The family would have had a fantastic new portrait...if only Tristan weren't having so much fun!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Pumpkin Blaze

The Blaze is a pretty cool annual event that takes place at Van Courtland Manor in Croton on Hudson. They put out literally thousands of illuminated pumpkins around the old manor house. You really need a tripod to take decent pictures. The boys enjoyed it...and so did Aunt Patty and Uncle Skull.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Studio Shoot

The boys sat down for some studio photos. Have you ever seen two more photogenic boys!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Rest in Peace, Aunt Lucille

We just found out that Tom's great Aunt Lucille recently passed away. We hadn't seen much of Aunt Lucille lately as she and Uncle Dick moved to Florida a number of years ago. But as a child, Tom remembers many family events where Aunt Lucille was a significant presence. Uncle Dick passed recently, soon after his brother John.

If you click on the picture above, you can see pictures from Uncle Dick's 80th Birthday Party.

Aunt Lucille will be missed. Rest in Peace.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Goodbye, Yankee Stadium

Jennifer was quite emotional as we drove by her beloved Yankee Stadium on the evening of the final game at the storied landmark. She made sure to point out the event to her boys, hoping this would be a fond memory for them as well.

Hectic Chinese

Jennifer has been dreaming about Chinese food for months now. The problem is that she has been spoiled by the food at Grand Sechuan in Manhattan (9th Ave at 24th St). We can not find anything comparable in Westchester. So, we made a pilgramage to the City.

Originally, we would go here with our friends Greg and Lisa. Then friends Penelope and Doug would join us as well. Over time, our families have grown, so now the trip involved 11 people. It makes for quite a hectic time, but the food is still wonderful.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Development Alert: William Walking

William took his "13 steps" this weekend and is now an offical walker (lucky us!).

This is not video of his first steps. That video was a but dark, but can be found here.

Labor Day in Kent

Even though Tristan's friend Rory has a luxurious in-ground pool (up behind the barn), the seem to truly enjoy the simply pleasure of a $4 inflatable puddle. What you can't see in these public pictures is that both boys are in their "all together". They would taking running starts from across the yard and flop into the pool.

Another adventure this weekend was fishing at Kent Falls. This time, mommy caught a fish. Not quite enought to feed everyone, but it brings a special kind of satisfaction.

Breakfast is always a great way to start the day. William seems to be enjoying himself.

The weekend wrapped up with an impromptu picnic in downtown Kent.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Acceptance Day at West Point

Today was A-Day...or Acceptance Day...for the Class of 2012 at West Point. Jennifer's cousin Mike is now officially a member of the core of cadets at our nation's prestigous military academy.

more video

The symbolic ceremony starts with the Point's upperclassmen lined up on the parade grounds. Then the fouth class cadets march into the ranks of the their fellow cadets. Much pomp and circumstance follows. Bands play. Anthems are sung. Flags are presented.

Tristan and William had a grand time exploring the grounds of West Point. They particularly liked the cannons, mules and...

...water fountains.

After the parade, we were able to meet up with Mike. We ran into his mother and grandmother along the way.

Since his family is in California, we expect to be seeing a lot of Cadet Mike over the next four years. He is a welcome addition to Paynecentral. Everyone is very proud of Mike.

Friday, August 22, 2008

There's poopy in my potty!

Ok, this may not be the most appropriate topic for a public website, but it is a major subject lately here at Paynecentral.

Several months ago, Tristan show significant interest in his new potty. This interest faded quickly and it has been a struggle to get the whole potty training thing underway. Lately, the prospect of being able to wear "Lightning McQueen" pullups seems to has spured some renewed interest in the potty. But despite a lot of potty-sitting, there has been no action.

But that changed today. Tristan announced he needed to go potty...and off he went. William had some issues of his own, so Jennifer had to go upstairs to care for him, leaving Tristan on the first floor to do his business.

"Mommy! There's poopy in my potty!" was the announcement that greated Jennifer upon her return. Tristan was standing by his potty, glowing with pride, pointing... "and there is wee, too!"

So far, this has been an isolated incident, but our dreams of becoming a one-diaper family are (hopefully) on their way to realization.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Role Reversal

This afternoon, Tristan was taking his nap a bit too seriously, so we had to wake him up. To this end, Tom litterally pounced on the poor unsuspecting boy, bouncing the bed around him repeatedly. Once Tristan started to come to consciousness, Tom pronnounced "I'm up! I'm up!", mimicing T's typical morning decree. Almost immediately following, Jennifer (with William in tow) joined in the fun, repeating a stream of Tristan-isms:

- "Lemonade, lemonade, I want lemonade"
- "I'm up! I'm up!"
- "Want my hand"
- "Car movie, car movie!"
- "Ka-chow!"
- "No way, mom"
- "I want to watch froggies on your 'puter"
- "Too cold. Very windy, daddy!"
- "Puffs!"
- "Is this a buzy road?"
- "Pollywog in a Bog song"
- "Pretzels!"

Needless to say, Tristan was still in a daze...and exceedingly confused. This actually lasted for the rest of the afternoon. So our little trick backfired. Note to self: the wrong side of the bed includes bouncing above it!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Great Goldfish Hunt

Jen thinks Tom has been drinking during the day. Tom insists he has seen a large goldfish in the Koi pond. The problem is, no koi have ever been put into the pond. But for two days in a row, while visiting with Tristan's froggies, Tom insisted he had seen a large, silver/orange fish, the size of him palm, swimming amongst the pond-weeds. Jen wanted to know what Tom was drinking.

Tom reached for his camera. Like any search for an elusive prey, the photos are blurry and leave much to the imagination.

None of the pictures provides a definitive koi shot. But Tom knows what he saw...

There is the fish...right next to the leaf that looks like a rubber ducky...