Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Giving Mom a Break

We were all variously fighting off a summer cold over the past weekend, but we managed to fit in a big event to mark Sam's 5 weeks of life. He got his first bottle of milk (which his mother provided through earlier effort, of course.) He took it like a champ, and Mom got a nice rest.

Maggie performed with her Reaching Heights music camp on Saturday morning. Anna's CMSS piano camp recital is on Friday.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day 2010

We had good friends over for a Father's Day cookout, hamburgers and sausages on the grill.

Tiny Tiger >ROAR!< (with Mama Tiger)

Jen and Caroline

A happy father on his day.

The P-E's

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Cleveland Blast from the Past

In the process of streamlining our personal belongings (also known as getting rid of stuff) I've come across two panoramic photos that have come down through the family. Both show a bit of Cleveland history as well as family history.

The first is of the Union Printers International Golf Association's summer outing in Cleveland, in August of 1935. The tournament was held at Ridgewood Golf Club in Parma. In the photograph at the front right are my paternal grandparents, Clarence and Blanche Claspy.

Here is a zoomed crop of Blanche and Shorty- she is standing behind him with a brimmed white hat. I'm totally digging Shorty's bow tie and navy blazer with white bucks. I'm pretty sure he's got seersucker trousers on as well. Nice. I wonder who was baby sitting their 9 month old son that day?

And here is a scan of the Plain Dealer, announcing the winner of the tournament. The association also held a baseball tournament at the same time.

The other photograph is of the faculty at the Thomas A. Edison School in Cleveland. As this article relates, the Edison school was for "incorrigible children" and offered them vocational training in a strongly structured atmosphere. My maternal grandfather is pictured here. William S. Hoffman was a printer (like Grandpa Claspy!) but also an educator. He taught printing in the Cleveland Public School system for many years, at Edison, West Tech and other schools.

Here is the crop and zoom of Grandpa Hoffman. This is is about 2 and a half years before my mother was born. He was 23 years old when this photo was taken and looks quite natty in his three piece suit and pomaded hair.

I plan on donating the original photographs to the Cleveland Memory Project.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Three Weeks Old

Sam is three weeks old today. So I should probably post a couple of pictures.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Fresh and Refreshing

This year we decided to try a CSA- Community Supported Agriculture- a way to support local farmers and get some fresh, good food. We subscribed to Fresh Fork Market, a CSA started by a few recent CWRU grads, and the first three weeks have been great!

Here's a few of the things we got in our bag this week: radishes, onions, beets with greens, strawberries and lettuce (with dirt!) Already in the 'fridge were the whole chicken and a dozen eggs.

And here's an obligatory baby picture of a completely different kind of refreshment.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

The Big One That Didn't Get Away

Grandpa Doug and I went out fishing today.

I netted this eight pounder.

And here are the happy grandparents, Grandma is busy covering a storage box and Grandpa is singing a song to Sam.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Rooms Finished

This is a home renovation/decoration update. With monkeys.

The nursery is done. It got some plaster work and fresh paint. Grandma Pam sewed window valances, crib ruffle and bumper, and covers for the shelf bins. Crib and dresser are from Pottery Barn Kids.

One little monkey with lots of littler monkeys.

West wall is floor to ceiling bookshelves, formerly filled with books on rhetoric, now filled with baby diapers, supplies and clothes. And board books.

East and South walls, dresser/changing table and Pooh prints.

North and East walls, crib and rocker.

And the bathroom, right next door. Completely done at this point. I ripped out the window sill last week and replaced it with a piece of solid marble, a definite improvement. I found the curtain and rug in a recent CB2 catalog and thought the yellow was a nice accent for the black and white.

Friday, June 4, 2010


Belay that, matey! I'm Captain Sam, and I'll say where this ship sails!

Old Tools

You would think that with a newborn child in the house, projects involving old tools would come to a screeching halt. You'd be wrong.

For the last two weeks, Grandma Pam has been a whirlwind of projects (as well as cooking and cleaning). With Anna, she has made puppets for a school project. With Maggie, she whipped up a batch of delicious chocolate frosted eclairs for French food day at school. And late into the night, the house has been echoing with the sound of the sewing machine. In the short time she's been in Cleveland, all three kids have new curtains in their bedrooms, and Sam's room has a fully coordinated decor- curtains, crib ruffle, bumper pad and storage bins, all in colorful, monkey bedecked fabric.

I, however, was quite distracted by the machine with which all of the sewing projects have been created. I knew that Kim had a sewing machine stowed away on our third floor, but it hadn't seen the light of day since I moved in. Pam unearthed it shortly after she arrived, and it has been whirring away since.

The machine is a thing of beautiful industrial design. A Singer 99K, its curves and lines evoke a time when such things mattered. The gleaming black enamel, golden pinstripes, and art-deco embellishments are worthy of a vintage automobile. Its cast iron heft is also a thing of the past in todays age of plastic and aluminum. Lifting it inspires confidence that the tool you are about to use is a serious one, not a toy. Looking at its beauty inspires the worker to create similar beauty in fabric and thread. It sports a "Made in England" badge, and according to my research, was probably built in the early 1950s. It was available in both hand-crank and electric versions- this one is electrified.

As with all old tools in our house, I plan to keep this one in top condition, even if it is only used during visits by Grandma. I've already poured through the owners manual and found other manuals online to make sure I can keep it correctly cleaned and lubricated. I have no doubt it will last another fifty years.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010