Nibbles & Bits

Small bites from a life revolving around my sweet family, a love of cooking, and all things good.

I'm Ali. Email me at akoper (AT) outloook (DOT) com
This was the week E learned to talk. Not words strung into sentences, not the infinite vocabulary of a big kid - or even a full-fledged toddler. But, his vocabulary probably doubled in the past week alone. He called out “baby, baby!” while pointing to the Pampers box, he asked for a “cracker” even when that cracker was in fact part of a seashell on his brother’s nightstand, grabbed a “diaper,” learned the names of my mom’s dog, “Stella,” and my step mom’s dog, “Bea” and even more. He’s so proud of his new words and it’s just incredible to watch him learn day by day. I forgot how magical one is. 

This was the week E learned to talk. Not words strung into sentences, not the infinite vocabulary of a big kid - or even a full-fledged toddler. But, his vocabulary probably doubled in the past week alone. He called out “baby, baby!” while pointing to the Pampers box, he asked for a “cracker” even when that cracker was in fact part of a seashell on his brother’s nightstand, grabbed a “diaper,” learned the names of my mom’s dog, “Stella,” and my step mom’s dog, “Bea” and even more. He’s so proud of his new words and it’s just incredible to watch him learn day by day. I forgot how magical one is. 

Last week, I was driving the boys to daycare. We’d been talking about nothing in particular when, from the backseat, Ryan said “My heart wishes it could look at Evan’s face all day. He’s so cute and I love him.”

I know that being a big brother can be hard, but Ry Ry is as good as they get. He even shares his ice cream.

I need to get back in the habit of my mundane, interesting-only-to-me bulleted updates on my little guys. There’s so much about this time in our lives that I want to remember in detail. Evan is so funny and tender and stubborn. He has hugs and kisses all day long, and loves to make us hug and kiss his lovey Pierre.

He could color all day long. He was the first kid to wake up the morning of July 5th - the bigger kids sleeping off the fireworks and baby cousin Astrid one-upping him (girlfriend sleeps from 6pm-7:30am!!!). He saw his cousin’s pens and pulled himself into one of their sturdy wooden chairs. He looked so big to me. But really, he has no idea what he’s doing, draws on his legs, tries to eat the pen. Definitely still on the cusp of babyhood and toddler.

We were playing in his bedroom tonight after bath. He walked to his dresser, opened the drawer, took out his sleep sack and said “night night.” As a mom of a four year old I realize that’ll be hard to remember what it was even like to consider that noteworthy and charming, but it was. He has opinions, he knows how to express them, and he’s learned so, so much about the world around him. 

The top picture is a common occurrence. Mouth full, already signing for “more.” This was after splashing at the park. He loves water so, so much. Maybe even more than Ryan. At this age, Ryan was fine going under water, but Evan begs for it when he’s in my arms at the pool. And if he’s standing in shallow water, he falls face first over and over. 

Oh nothing, just researching wineries since Steve and I are going to Sonoma two weeks from tomorrow for 3 days sans babies.

!!!!!!!!!

Flights and car booked yesterday (and called my mom because she is THE BEST), house rented and dinner resos made today. Happy anniversary to us!

A “before” picture. Look at that sweet strand of hair over his right eye. He’d had that very hair since the day he was born. I miss that baby, and know that in no time at all I’ll miss THIS baby. The one who high-fives every member of the family for the tiniest of accomplishments (obeys when I tell him to put something down? high fives for EVERYONE!). Who says “Daddy” more often than any other word - with arms outstretched when Steve walks into a room, or when Evan comes into our bedroom and looks for Steve under the covers even if he’s already left for work, or just when he’s thinking of him. Who climbs up and down the stairs a zillion times a day yet still can’t remember to go down on his belly without strict guidance - he’d far rather walk down like the rest of us. Who dances like a maniac, twirling in circles till he falls down. He copies every little thing his big brother does, climbing onto the foot stool to faux spit into the sink after brushing his teeth and wiping his face with the towel all by himself, coloring with great zeal. I’m going to miss him just like this and today’s haircut makes it feel almost over.  

A “before” picture. Look at that sweet strand of hair over his right eye. He’d had that very hair since the day he was born. I miss that baby, and know that in no time at all I’ll miss THIS baby. The one who high-fives every member of the family for the tiniest of accomplishments (obeys when I tell him to put something down? high fives for EVERYONE!). Who says “Daddy” more often than any other word - with arms outstretched when Steve walks into a room, or when Evan comes into our bedroom and looks for Steve under the covers even if he’s already left for work, or just when he’s thinking of him. Who climbs up and down the stairs a zillion times a day yet still can’t remember to go down on his belly without strict guidance - he’d far rather walk down like the rest of us. Who dances like a maniac, twirling in circles till he falls down. He copies every little thing his big brother does, climbing onto the foot stool to faux spit into the sink after brushing his teeth and wiping his face with the towel all by himself, coloring with great zeal. I’m going to miss him just like this and today’s haircut makes it feel almost over.  

A couple of boys at dinner after a long, sunny day of haircuts, bubbles and pool time. I took the day off and Evan got his first haircut. I held it together, but it was a close call. He looks adorable and Steve’s hairdresser - who now cuts all three boys’ hair - did a great job. But I already kind of regret it. I want to turn back time, and not just to this morning.

A couple of boys at dinner after a long, sunny day of haircuts, bubbles and pool time. I took the day off and Evan got his first haircut. I held it together, but it was a close call. He looks adorable and Steve’s hairdresser - who now cuts all three boys’ hair - did a great job. But I already kind of regret it. I want to turn back time, and not just to this morning.

We had the best weekend with our little boys. Two days in and we’re doing summer right.

This morning, while we let Steve take his turn to sleep in, the boys and I walked to our new neighborhood bakery for the first time. At close to a mile away, it’s a bit longer of a walk than our last, but so worth it. The sun is magical. Ryan walked both ways without complaining at all, Evan only spoke up from the stroller to say hi to the birds and dogs we passed. And I didn’t mind that I’d been up since 6.

After Evan’s morning nap, I scavenged our cupboards to make an impromptu 15 minute picnic (israeli couscous + oil and vinegar + lemon zest + chickpeas +  red pepper + leftover prosciutto…and strawberries). We rode bikes to a park just about 1.5 miles away. It was hilly and I felt accomplished. And was reminded that I really, really need to start exercising.

Then, after both kids’ naps, we headed to the pool. I have to humble brag… my boys are so brave. Evan toddled around in the shallow area, face planting, pulling himself up, and giggling over and over. Ryan went down the big water slide until we told him it was time to go. I love that they love water.

That, plus dinners outside, reading in the sun, chasing pigeons. I love summer.

Technically a day early…

Technically a day early…

No captions necessary.

Happy Father’s Day to the greatest dad there is. I challenge myself every day to be the parent Steve is. Loving, calm, sympathetic, firm, hilarious and consistent. The boys and I celebrated him today, though every day I feel such intense gratitude that he’s ours; mine; theirs. To the man who made me a mother, is an equal partner, and a lot of fun to be around, thank you.