The Tovsky Tribe

Chocolates, Cocktails, Friends, Babies...A Girl Should Never Have Just ONE!!

Friday, February 29, 2008

Seeing Double!

Soon after we found out we were pregnant, we were given the good news that it was multiples. Immediately we were excited for the twins and never considered multiples could mean anything more. At a very early ultrasound, when Chase and Ryder were mere black dots, there seemed to be a third black dot. Apparently Baby B, who we now know as Ryder, had split into an identical twin. This was shocking to us and admittedly, I am not sure either of us took this as good news. After further viewing via ultrasound, the doctor said he was not sure that "B2" was viable, as it seemed smaller than his brothers. A week later when we went for another ultrasound, and to see heartbeats, Baby A (Chase) had a beat, as did Baby B (Ryder), but B2 had not developed and we were told it would be absorbed. In that week between the possibility of three and the reality of two we never once spoke about what we would do, and to be honest neither of us were disappointed to not be pregnant with triplets.
Occasionally, however, I think about what it may have been like to have three boys. I think about it on the days that our twins are a handful, wondering how we would have ever managed. And, I think about it on the days when they are sweet as can be and running to mommy for hugs and kisses, and think it may have been fun to wrap my arms around three pint sized men.
Recently, I took a round of photos of Ryder at his favorite window. I found the pictures to be quite interesting to look at, when it dawned on me....this is what it would have looked like...two little Ryders. Check it out!!
PS: Chase did not cooperate for this particular photo shoot. He loves the window as well but was too busy pointing out trucks, trees, dogs, and neighbors to marvel at his own reflection.






Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Cousins

Sometimes it gets hairy, a fight over a toy or a battle for attention. But, more often, the cousins have a lot of fun when they hang out. Here is a sweet, quiet moment, that had to be captured. Don't worry Madden, when you are ready there is a 4th chair for you!!

Remember When Bathing Was This Much Fun?!!




Buds!!




It is not easy to capture a moment when said moment involves a toddler. It becomes increasingly difficult as you add more toddlers. Adding a baby does not make it any easier. But, getting Chase and Ryder together with Max and Nate is special for me. I know I am fortunate to have my best friends sons' so close in age to my own sons and we hope they grow up to be close friends. Here is the best we could do with the photo opp....someday they will ham it up for the camera all at once.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Haircut

Before the cut

Short and tight around the ears


So, we took Chase for a haircut. The time had come. Despite loving his curls, they were too long, too out of shape, too much. So we took him back to the hair cuttery just 6 weeks after haircut #2. This time he had no interest in flirting with the beautician and was no not nearly as excited to get his hair cut. We told her to trim it and she chopped it...all of it....tight and short is the best way to describe it. At first, I admit, I was a bit disappointed. I found it too short and the way it fell on his head made him look, well dorky. But, almost two weeks have passed, it has grown a bit and we get to "Style" it our way and I like it a lot more. He looks a lot older, like his bar mitzvah is next week, and his face somehow looks different, longer, thinner?! But, he does look cute. He no longer has curls. Coincidentally, maybe, Chase has taken on a new habit of whining ever since this haircut and it does leave me to wonder if perhaps he misses them. But, I am sure in just a few weeks they will be back and we will see where this adventure of Chase's hair takes us.

Sicko

I am getting over being sick for the third time this month. I have never looked so forward to March. I can't remember the last time I was sick three times in a year, let alone a month. It seems we (Chase, Ryder and myself) are circulating the same viruses around. The thing about being sick when you are a mommy is you can't really recover. Todd does his share, there is no doubt, but its not like I can sit around recouping for several days, which is what I need. I actually feel guilty being sick. I feel bad being away from the kids, I feel bad putting the extra load on Todd, I feel bad that I may get someone else sick, it is just so much easier to stay healthy. I will need to work on that for the upcoming months:)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Lost and Found!

Back in December Ryder's shoe disappeared (to read the entry click here.) We thought we had searched everywhere and aware of the boys' interest in tossing things in the trash can we figured it went out with the trash. Just this weekend the missing shoe was found, accidentally. Under the bed in the guest room, hidden by a shadow, it sat. Ryder did not seem excited to see it, not like I was, but as it turns out it still fits him. An old pair of shoes is like new when it comes out of hiding.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Happy 19th Month Birthday!





Dear Chase and Ryder,

So, this letter comes so late because we went two days without an internet connection. I am sure by the time you are old enough to understand what that means, connections will be much more difficult to lose. But, in this time, losing your internet connection is like losing a hand. Really.
Anyway, Happy 19 months! Another month that went so quickly I hardly had time to notice it passed. The most significant thing about 19 months as far as I am concerned.....HOLY COW you are almost two. Two? Ok, I will save that rant for your two year letter. Although I receive the "My Toddler this Week" update from babycenter every week, due to my current lack of free time, I rarely read them. Today, this is what it says, "
When you're out and about, your toddler's favorite pastime may be running away from you as fast as he can, squealing in delight as you rush to catch up. He's oblivious to danger, so you'll need to be extra watchful of cars, bicycles, and dogs if you take him for a walk outdoors. Keeping him strapped into a stroller is safest, of course, but that's not always where he wants to be. You'll probably have to compromise about how much time he spends on his own power, and build in extra time when running errands."
I find these words to be pretty true, but you have been getting the joy ride from running away from me as fast as you can for quite some time and we are working on improvements. You have actually learned to hold my hand while walking really well, and I have been quite proud of both of you. Don't worry, our walks through parking lots are not stress.free, as one or both of you still have the tendency to dart off. But, yes, improvements have been made. Today, I held Chase's hand, and Chase, you so sweetly reached for Ryder's, and the three of us walked into Ohev Shalom in that order. We actually made it all the way in.
You are both able to follow directions much better these days, but that does not mean you always want to!! Simple instructions, usually ordered with a please, are often followed. Most NO's however, are ignored!!
Chase, you continue to learn new words every day. The size of your vocabulary is impressive for your age, but your clarity in the words you speak is even more so. You say most words clearly, there is no question what you are saying and you will repeat any word we say. Ryder, you are starting to talk a bit more these days. Your words are a little less clear than your brothers, but you are newer to the world of words. You add an "I" sound to certain words, Moi for more of Cai for Car, but daddy and I are learning your language. You seem to be inherently polite, which is wonderful. Occasionally you have to be asked to ask nicely, but often you add please on your own. You also say Thank you, one of the clearest things you say, many times with out being reminded. Chase, you do say please, usually after a reminder, and with Thank you it is the cutest thing...instead of saying thank you when I ask you to, you just say your welcome. It is funny. Can't fault you, as it is not totally wrong.
Neither of you have gotten more teeth yet, despite the teething from Ryder and the many lacking for Chase.
Our class schedule has changed a bit from the past. We no longer take music class because you are escape artists who spent more time darting out of the classroom then sitting in the classroom. You still love music but that class is not for you right now. We now take Creative Parenting on Mondays. It is a good class with a lot of structure. We spend the first 5 minutes doing an art project, which is a bit over your skill level so I do most of it, but you are learning to sit and watch and be more involved as time goes on. Plus, you love to eat the glue. It is a good prep for pre-school so we enjoy it. Playgroup still happens on Tuesday's but it has been several weeks since all of us have been able to attend. Wednesday's we still take gym but we have graduated to the next level (Gymsters) and now have it at 9:30am. Thursdays are a free day, and we often times see Mom-Mom Joan. Although, it is also a day when I will try to make dates with people we do not get to see as much as we may like. Friday mornings we now spend at Tot Shabbat at Ohev Shalom. It is very similar to Mommy and me, only shabbat oriented. It is fun to get you acquainted with the prayers and the songs. You both love the challah and ask for it all week long. We now take one home with us every week.
Ryder, you really are an escape artist. You can open doors, unlock the locks. You open every door in our house, you can open doors in restaurants or in buildings. Very few are too heavy and we really must keep an eye on you.
Your eating habits are improving from where they were a month ago, but are still not quite where they used to be. Chase you remain to be the better eater, Ryder you are a bit more particular. You like it simple, french fries, hot dogs, turkey meatballs, pizza. Chase you will try a few more things but at any moment either of you can and will chuck everything across the kitchen. Your meal often ends at that point. You are able to sit at the table longer now, even if you are not eating, which is helpful. You love to ask for a pen and paper and will happily doodle. Unfortunately, doodling on the tray, the table, yourselves so we often need to take it away from you to prevent you from ingesting ink (or crayons) or from permanently tattooing yourselves. However, doodling is now amongst your favorite things to do, and I am personally happy about that. I love to doodle too!
You like to help me cook in the kitchen. In the mornings you help me beat the eggs or sometimes you will stir whatever is cooking,though you usually call it soup. We take turns, each of you get to stir and although i like to make both of you tasters, Chase usually prefers the job. You have watched me (as I teach) how to slice cucumbers and tomatoes. You do seem to pay attention and you love it. When we are cooking I have you smell the herbs or the garlic and you put your noses out and wave the flavors in with your fingers- its adorable. I love having you in the kitchen with me, but it is not always so easy.
You both have also found a new love for Barney. My feelings for this are yet to be determined. To be quite honest I find him annoying and the kids on the show are even more irritating. However, the show is very educational, it teaches manners and using imagination, and it is all incorporated with singing and dancing which you both love. You ask me everyday for Barney, a name you can both say clearly, and you dance and clap the minute the music starts. What's a mom to do? Along the lines of music you still love your guitar, particularly Ryder, and you both love the My Gym song which you will clap and sing HI hi hi to get me started. Daddy recently purchased a live DVD of Elton John's 60th birthday....Ryder you absolutely love it. You sit and just stare amazed at the music. It is interesting to watch and we wonder, will you be a rock star? Chase you are beginning to sing. You sing pieces of songs, The ABC's, Twinkle Twinkle, Happy Birthday. You are just filling in words or pieces right now but I imagine it won't be long before you sing a whole song.
I am amazed by how many days you are well-behaved boys. Boys you remain, so jumping, climbing, and running around is part of being well-behaved, but you're both mild mannered and generally not too whiny....thankfully.
You are friendly boys. Chase you say hi and goodbye to everything, people, toys, trucks. You both love to look for the boy across the street (Joey.) You know he lives there and are often looking for him. When mommy and daddy are leaving you say goodbye to us as well, no complaints.
You still like books, but after a page you say all done and hand me a new one. You love your legos but mostly just to dump them on the floor. You still like to play basketball, ride on your cars, and play with the learning home. You still love Elmo and Cookie and Big Bird but you do not want to sit and watch Sesame Street for more than a few minutes. You love your fish and want to see them every day and are still learning not to bang on the tank, put your hands in the water, and not to overfeed. You both have a fascination, I suppose as all boys should, with trucks and tractors and school buses. Airplanes and Helicopters are high on that list as well. In the My Gym parking lot there has been a lot of construction for months so you love to go there and see the tractors and the dirt. You look out the window all excited. You can point out a tractor anywhere, and you both say it clearly.
We enjoy watching the school bus coming and going with the elementary school kids. And standing on the window sill watching for the cars and neighbors is how we pass a lot of time.

Days pass quickly, as do weeks and months and not a moment passes that I am not so proud of everything you are, everything you are learning, and everything you are becoming. I hope you are proud of yourselves, as well. You continue to be silly boys with a comedy routine and a great sense of humor. The sound of your laughter is one I hold in my memory, it remains to be the greatest sound in the world. I love you beyond measure.

Love,
Mommy

Thursday, February 7, 2008

MORE-eee-moto


Wow!!! If you have ever been to Morimoto then you understand when I use only one word to describe the place...SEXY! Its glass door entryway, with thick, Zen-curved handles, greets you and the seduction begins. The bamboo walls and ceiling curve around you with a natural grace, and the voluptuous, sculptured carvings cause envy in their shape. In case you fail to notice, which is unlikely, the phallic light centering each table will surely grab your sexual appeal.

In the lofted bar area is where the night, and the intimacy, began. The dimly lit nook in the ceiling allows you to see the dining room through a curvy window. The seating is comfortable, yet upright and the energy flowing seems karmic. 
 I started with a Morimoto Martini, a junmai Morimoto sake and Smirnoff vodka garnished with Japanese cucumber slices. It was a fantastic drink that I would have stuck with all night if I hadn't tried the famous White Pear. This drink, deceptive in its alcohol content, was refreshing and delicious; a drink you would want on a summer's day; a drink you'd want your kids to taste. They did not specify the contents, and they should not, there is no way to duplicate the taste. We had not yet had a morsel of food and the night was already amongst our best evenings out. We had simply perused the menu and our taste buds were yearning for the flavors; the most difficult decision being what NOT to order.

We each chose an appetizer to share. I chose the Toro Tartare served with caviar and fresh wasabi. It melted in our mouths with each dollop and the fresh wasabi gave it the perfect burn. Each dollhouse-sized spoonful was an actual treat to the mouth. Todd's choice appetizer was the 10 hour Pork 'Kakuni" described as a braised pork belly with hot rice porridge. Deterred slightly by the term “pork belly” I chose wisely to try it and found a satisfaction in the first bite that I did not know existed in swine. We delighted in the short rib with a sweetened sauce balanced perfectly in porridge.  We delighted so that we did not want to leave one drop remaining. As we finished our appetizers we craved so much more and were grateful we still had several courses remaining. 


I tend to always order a salad, and though I enjoy it, it is rarely a memorable part of the meal. But, I suppose, I should have expected more from Morimoto. The Calamari Tempura Salad with mixed greens and white miso vinaigrette, which we shared, was split for us and, even still, the portion was large. The tempura was fried to a perfect temperature allowing the texture of the calamari to be perfectly savored. If you are one who has a taste for Asian cuisine, you understand that miso vinaigrette needs no further description. 


Our entrees were served to us after a hiatus that allowed us to regain our hunger and sip on more White Pears.  The Morimoto Surf and Turf: a Maine lobster decorated with daikon leaves and Kobe beef, marbled in different shades of red, were served with a side of Morimoto signature beer reduction.  The result was a delectable bite after bite after bite. The chewier texture of the lobster was offset by the tenderness of the beef. No matter which flavor was left in your mouth, you were left wanting more of both. I had ordered the Ishi Yaki Bop Buri, a rice dish prepared at the table in a hot river stone bowl served with King Yellowtail. The "rice dish" description misled me to believe, perhaps, I was ordering too simply for such a signature place, but one breath of the succulent flavors and I was keenly aware why Morimoto's name describes every dish. The rare yellowtail, seared minimally by the hot stone, was smooth and tasty and each morsel of rice had the perfect amount of flavor. I had not known when I ordered it that this dish was one of Morimoto's most famous. I now know why.  As we tried to salvage each remaining bite, wishing it did not have to end, we watched the other diners with their similar expressions. Faces of delight, lips shaping oohs and aahs, and we knew we were not alone in the enjoyment of these delicacies.

Of course we saved room for dessert, the highly recommended (from J-Jo, our server) Chocolate Pot de Crème. This melt in your mouth custard was accompanied by caramelized bananas and a sweet whipped cream that really ended a meal with the perfect balance of sweets.

I can still taste it all as I write this posting, wishing I had all of it all over again. Morimoto is not a place you can go every night, but it sure makes you wish that you could. The atmosphere, the food, the drinks, and the service all done to a perfection that very few restaurants are able to grasp. If you have a special occasion, or are simply celebrating life and food, head to Morimoto...but beware, it will leave you, undoubtedly, wanting MORE!!!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Get Your Kix




Perhaps I give my kids too much credit. Perhaps I am just not thinking two steps ahead of them. Perhaps I sickly enjoy watching them do things only kids can. During breakfast today I had out the brand new box of Kix (Kid tested, Mother approved:) I gave each boy a handful and, as expected, they each launched an oat or two across the kitchen before I removed those same handfuls and dumped it in the sink. I went in to my speech about how they do not have to eat but they certainly do not need to throw it and I pushed the box away. We finished eating the eggs, the waffles, the bananas without too much of a fight and then Chase started asking to see the boy on the box. He does this. He likes the man (Quaker Man) on the rice cakes bag, the man (Mr. Clean) on the disinfecting wipes container, and the boy on the kix cereal box. He also likes the man on the chalkboard at a local deli, but that is for another story. Anyway, I did give Chase the box so he could say hi to the boy, but first I made sure I rolled up the sealing bag which holds the cereal inside the box. Chase had his conversation and other than ripping the flap of the box, no mess incurred. Then Ryder got a hold of the box. Ryder has a way with things. He can take things apart, he manages to get the plastic covers off of the toilet screws, he likes to dump the flash cards then put them back in the box, he finds many ways to spill the no spill snack traps, he can store new contacts into my cell phone and send encrypted text messages, so the rolled up freshness bag in the cereal box was no challenge for my little boy. Before I knew it, the entire brand-new box, minus the two handfuls that ultimately ended up in the sink, was all over the floor. In an instant both boys were playing amongst the puffed oats with utter delight. Now that they have learned to jump, and actually get off the ground ever so slightly, they loved jumping up and landing on the pile of kix. I am used to having a few kix on the floor and the sound of one crunching under my shoe is as irritating as todd's drunken snore or the beeping your car makes when you leave the keys in the ignition and open the door. Somehow, they found the crunch of hundeds of kix exhiliritating and continued to do so until it was a powdery yellow mess on my floor interrupted by only a few whole ones. I watched this go on for a few seconds, managed to stay calm and even see the humor in it as I asked Ryder what he did. I got my camera and captured the moment then removed the boys from the fun so that I could get them dressed. We had to be out the door in 25 minutes. After they were dressed they wanted to help clean up the mess. They really enjoy using the broom and pushing it around the mess. Once it was clear they were just spreading the mess over a larger surface area I took over and let my mom, who had arrived post-mess, entertain them while I used first the broom and dustpan followed by a swivel vacuum to get the majority of the crumbs off of the floor.
Then we headed out in the pouring rain to Tot Shabbat....
Just another day in the life of twin toddlers.