Down on the Farm

Some friends of ours are hardworking and entrepreneurial.

Lately, they’ve been looking for a new project. Our tribe accompanied them on a visit to a local farm property that’s for sale. There’s riverfront, sugarbush, open fields and scrub. There’s a farmhouse, two barns, two sugarhouses, a shed and an old coop.

But it was in rough shape.

Scott said, “It makes me tired just looking at it.”

Whatever the outcome, it was a great treat. The kids got to explore and for the parents it recalled (mis)adventures of our youth.

I took these pics on an HTC Incredible using Vignette for Android (demo version).


Fellow Dads, You’ll Get This…

Sometimes, even when it’s not your fault, these are a good idea.

She Came, She Saw, She Kicked Some Mouse

If you follow this blog, then you know that our daughter recently had the opportunity to visit the Mouse in Florida.

We drove to Boston to meet her and her “host family” as they got off the plane. We had spent two days in Beantown with our boys and Piggy, taking in the sites and painting the town pink.

As we floated down the escalator, we yelled out in unison.┬áThere were hugs, spinning, and a babble of words: warm, fun, alligators, Mickey, Minnie, silly, swim, princesses, Chip and Dale…

After a harrowing ride north through an ice storm and a good night’s sleep, she finally got the chance to narrate a slideshow of photos depicting her adventure. Here’s a sample:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Yeah, she came, she saw, she kicked some mouse.

Older Than Mom

Henry said, “Dad, you are the oldest one in this family – you’re even older than Mom! That means you get to tell her what to do.”

Piggy Goes to Beantown

My wife put together this fun video of our recent trip to Boston. You can get more of the story at her blog, OINKtales.


Piggy’s Adventures in Beantown from OINKtales on Vimeo.

Nora’s Note

On her way to Disney, my daughter wrote this letter to her security blanket and her little brother's stuffed pig.

The Sled

Shaun White was relieved to find out that he will have retired long before Henry is old enough to compete in The Olympics.

Put simply, Henry shreds. I have never seen a 5 year-old throw himself head-first down a sledding hill with such abandon.

Wipe outs, crashes, face plants – none faze Henry. The only time he whispers or moans is when the sun sets and its time to hang up the sled.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


The Mouse Beckons…

I came in from walking the dog. Paco’s red coat was dotted with snowflakes. Every inch of my skin was covered; just my eyes peered through my full-body suit of Gore-Tex.

Nora stood in the middle of the kitchen.

“Hey, Dad!” she shouted.

“Mmmfphh,” I replied.

“Is it cold outside?”

“Yes, hon, it is very very cold outside.”

“Huh. You know what?” she smirked, eyebrows raised high.


“It isn’t very cold in Floor-i-daaaahhhhh!” and she raced up to her room, giggling to herself.

I began my winter-walking-the-dog-unwrapping-procedure and smiled to myself. Nora was invited a few months ago to accompany our very close friends on a special trip to visit the Mouse in Disney World.

Since Nora is the kind of girl who needs to mull, we weren’t surprised when her immediate response to the idea was, “No. Uh-uh.” Many people were involved in a carefully coordinated campaign to warm her up to the idea. Disney World brochures were left in strategic places around the house, every Disney flick since 1979 made it to the top of our Netflix queue and we scheduled a weekend away with our friends as a trial run sans the rest of the Kinney Collective.

Slowly, but surely, she began to turn a corner. And since she has fully embraced the idea, she’s moved from scowling with her arms crossed to cheerily rubbing it in at every chance that she is going to Florida and WE are not.

Just this week, I found a Georga O’Keefe calendar posted to the fridge, the dates in January being meticulously crossed out one by one.

And then, a list appeared, Nora is keeping a tally of items to bring on her quest to visit the Mouse. My personal favorite, “camra.”

I hope the Mouse knows what he’s in for; Nora is coming.

See the full gallery on posterous

Dragon Tears


I read Puff the Magic Dragon to the kids tonight. The edition we have is full of beautiful and sentimental paintings by Eric Puybaret.

In reading it, I was struck by the fact that it really is a poignant story about the loss of innocence and a child-like fascination with the world around us.

As I finished the book, I turned to Henry (he’s five). He was rubbing quiet tears from his cheeks. He hugged his Piggy close and said, “Man, that’s a really sad story.”

“It sure is buddy,” I replied as I kissed him on the head.”G’night pal.”

Before leaving, I leaned over and switched on his night light..even though he didn’t ask me to.

Under the Covers

Hands down, one of the best things about the holidays is couch time. Every morning, I wake up (without an alarm clock, mind you) and put on the coffee. The three kid-lets are on the couch buried in covers.

This morning I found a fourth "kid" under the covers. Hen was practically lying on top of our dog Paco. When I asked the extra lump under the covers to identify himself, he poked his furry head out and squinted at me, snorted, and dove back under.

I stirred my coffee and sighed: one moment of peace before the chaos of the day.