Thursday, April 16, 2009

Good-bye Graffiti Park

soho playground march 2009
This is the playground we discovered last December with my mom. It's a lovely place right in the middle of Soho, with lots of finely dressed children running and sliding and swinging. It has a clean fence that surrounds the area to keep little ones in, and passers-bys out.

This is the playground closest to my house:
graffitti park march 2009
We call it Graffiti Park.

Actually, I should say this was the playground:
I mean - really? You have to tag the playground equipment?

With absolutely no notice, the city recently ripped out the playground equipment. I was there on a Sunday with my son and a friend's baby, and when I drove by on Tuesday it was gone. That was March 22nd, and a month later the city still has no plans about when the replacement is going in. I drive by each day on the way home from work and see children playing in the dirt - they really have no where else to play. I should be thrilled that the playground is being replaced, but I'm not. There don't appear to be any plans to fence the property, or otherwise attempt to exclude the ne'er-do-wells who will again sully the new equipment.

I shudder sometimes to think of where I'm raising my son. For example, this is my neighbor's property:
Note how the siding is peeling from being cleaned of graffiti so often. Why would he bother to replace it? Would you, knowing it would be tagged again?

I wonder, very often, why some areas are better maintained than others. Why some people will drop their litter on the street, while others don't. Why some cities do something about said litter, and others don't.

On a lighter note, before the playground was ripped out, BabyMan figured out how to climb the steps, walk across the platform, and slide down the slide all by himself.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Some things

There are some things people warn you about. Some of those things turn out just like you'd heard, and you feel somewhat prepared. Some of those things are far less awful than you'd been warned. And then there are the terrible twos.
My darling, beautiful, amazing child has commenced with the tantrum throwing. Yes, this child:
most adorable toddler ever

There are several variations on the theme. Once or twice a day we get the "I'm going to see if I can get what I want by screaming" tantrum. This can be easily mitigated by either giving him what he wants (which I often already intend to give him, but I might be moving too slowly) or offering an appropriate substitute. Sometimes the desired item (or activity) is simply off limits - razor blades, walking in the middle of the street - and we move up to the intense "I've lost my mind and don't know how to stop screaming" tantrum. These are not so easy to manage. In fact, management isn't even an option - it's simply a matter of keeping from losing my own mind.

After a brief reprieve while the whole family was sick and the little man was too weary for tantrums, it seems he is feeling well again. This morning we woke up with a tantrum (he was screaming for a banana before his eyes were fully opened, and getting dressed first was not on his agendy). We settled down enough to begin the dressing chore but another tantrum ensued when he was informed that mommy can't get dressed with a child clinging to her neck*. We settled down enough to let mommy get dressed and start undressing baby when he lost his mind over the indignity of having a fresh diaper placed on his behind. While also being asked to lay down! And not roll over!

As I recover from the morning (and send loving thoughts to my husband who is home with the wearying boy all day) I have created this graphic. It turns out that something can be so horrible that it's actually hilarious. And with this phase, these might be the only laughs we get for a bit.

*The odd piece of news is that because of the exhausting fits he throws, he now needs more comfort than ever. He wraps both arms around my neck and holds on.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

The cost of being not that kind of knitter

This lovely sock:
Fits more like an ankle brace than like a sock.

I know I said I'm not that kind of knitter, but I'm not stupid either. The Jaywalker pattern is notorious for being too tight for most people, so twice - TWICE - while I was knitting the leg I slipped the stitches onto spare yarn and tried it on. It was snug going over the heel, and I'd have like a bit more ease, but it fit well enough. Going up a size would have made it far too loose. But alas, the finished sock is snug snug snug. I'll give it a bath and see if it loosens up, otherwise this is going to the bottom of the queue, only to get a mate if I decide to gift it to someone with smaller feet. I know some people would rip it out and start over, but I'd rather give it away. I'm just not that kind of knitter.

In other news, BabyMan and Carolyn and I are planning to go see the Yarn Harlot in New York today. This will be my first foray into the city without a second adult (though it's kind of cheating as I'm meeting two adults in Penn Station). BabyMan is quite the challenge when he doesn't want to sit still - I think Jujitsu instructors could learn a thing or two about breaking free from their opponent from this kid.

I say we're planning, because there are several "ifs" in the air. If the weather holds...if BabyMan's cold doesn't get worse as the day goes on....if work doesn't hold me up...(ETA: if it doesn't turn out we had the date wrong!!)

Fingers crossed. We're even dressed for the event.
matching feet