Tuesday, December 27, 2016

New Shirts for Christmas

Daddy John:  Both Benjamin Roy and Pete Dakota received new shirts from Daddy Steve for Christmas and were very excited  to try them on and show them off.

Pete is sporting a white T-shirt with the Doctor Who logo; one of Daddy John's favorite TV shows.

BR's t-shirt has maroon sleeves and features the Bulldog mascot of Daddy John's alma mater, the University of Minnesota-Duluth (UMD's colors are maroon & gold).
Benjamin Roy:   Let's go, 'Dogs!

They also drew each other's names for exchanging presents.  Looks like great minds think alike!
Pete Dakota:  I like what you got me, BR!
Benjamin Roy:  I do too, Pete.  The others will call us twins!

Thank you, Daddy Steve!

Saturday, December 24, 2016

...All Through The House

Daddy John:  Christmas Eve!  All the hustle & bustle of the week has subsided and a calm reigns in our house.  Most of the boys have gone to sleep; dreaming of Santa and presents.  A few are still up, however...

Anthony and Sasha are having one last mug of hot chocolate before bed.

Sasha:  I wonder what our friends in New Zealand are doing tonight?
Anthony:  It's already Christmas Day there.  They've probably opened their presents by now.

Kaveh and Giancarlo are playing train.

Giancarlo:  Toot! Toot!  The Christmas Express is bringing our presents from Santa!

Patrick is setting out apples and carrots for Santa's reindeer, while Miguel has treats for the jolly old elf himself.

Miguel:  Do you think Santa will like milk with his cookies?
Daddy John:  I think 'Santa' would rather have a cold beer.
Daddy Steve:  You're getting coal in your stocking, Daddy John

Benjamin Roy and Pete Dakota are snuggled up in front of the tree; admiring the lights and quietly sharing Christmases past and their hopes for Christmases future.

Merry Christmas and Peace on Earth from Gregoropolis

Wednesday, December 21, 2016


Daddy Steve:  This weekend I baked some holiday cupcakes for my co-workers.  Frank was very keen to help.  Initially, the idea of letting Frank help me bake cupcakes seemed as wise as recruiting a fox to guard the hen house.  I wondered if we would have anything to show for our efforts.  However, when he turned those big brown puppy dog eyes on me...well, how I could say no?  Turns out he was an excellent little helper.  He even reminded me to add a critical ingredient that I forgot (Daddy Steve can be scatter-brained this time of year).

Frank:  May I lick the beater when we're done?

Frank:  I want to give each one a yummy coat of frosting.

Daddy Steve:  We finished the cupcakes off with some decorative pixies I found online.  They have a very 1950's retro look.  Frank calls them the "Christmas Goblins."

Frank:  Don't you go hoppin' off!

Frank:  All done, Daddy!  I can have one now, right?

Sunday, December 18, 2016

It's A Wrap

Daddy Steve:  Patrick, our holiday dynamo, is relieved to have all of the Christmas wrapping done.

Patrick:  >Whew<  Now I can relax...right after I bake some Christmas cookies.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Home For Christmas (Holiday for Emilie, Part 2)

Sunday, December 11, 2016

La Vie En Rose (Holiday for Emile, Part 1)

Daddy Steve:  Emile has sent us a couple of selfies from his spa-vacation to Florida.

Emile:  Ahhhhh.  Zis is just like ze Côte d'Azur

Emile:  Zis is ze life I am meant to live

Thursday, December 8, 2016

A Christmas Mystery

Anthony:  <grumble, grumble>  Daddy Steve, how is it that the Christmas lights can get so tangled up after just sitting in a box all year?  <grumble, grumble>

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Deck The Halls

Daddy Steve:  Here in Gregoropolis, some of the boys approach the holidays with a greater sense of urgency than others.

Patrick: What are you guys doing?!
Tyler: Mikko and I are reading comics.
Frank: I was thinking about eating this cupcake
Patrick: Guys, it's December 4th!  Christmas is only 21 days away!  We have to get busy!

Patrick: There's lots of decorating to do: wreaths and garlands and red bows to put up.
Frank: Red bows.  Check.

Patrick: We need to send Christmas cards to all of our friends.
Frank: Christmas cards.  Check.

Patrick: And the wrapping!  We have so much to wrap!
Frank: Wrap, wrap, wrap.  Check.
Patrick: You guys get started while I make a list of ingredients we need for all the holiday baking.
Frank: Baking.  Check.

Mikko: Wow, I never realized how hectic the holidays can be.
Frank:  What was Patrick talking about?

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Happy Birthday, Sasha Morgenthaler!

Daddy John:  Today, November 30, is Sasha Morgenthaler's birthday (b. 1893), so we decided to have a small celebration in her honor.

We chose Steve's first Gregor, Sasha, and my first, Benjamin Roy, to be the masters of ceremony.

Sasha: These look delicious!  Happy Birthday to our Mummy!

Benjamin Roy:  Just don't tell Frank; he can smell these a mile away!

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving from Gregoropolis!

Daddy Steve: While shopping at Target recently, I happened upon this cute little turkey craft project.  I thought this would make a good Thanksgiving Day project for the boys.  It would keep them occupied while I cooked the real turkey and it would provide a nice centerpiece for our Thanksgiving table (bonus: the instructions said "No Glue Required" and I liked that!).  In order to give everyone a crack at it (and because they have short attention spans), we organized the boys into teams.

Tyler and Mikko didn't get very far.  They opened the package and then got distracted by the soccer ball for the rest of the day.

Kaveh and Giancarlo did much better.  After reading the instructions, they soon assembled the wooden body.
Giancarlo: The Italians have always been great builders.
Kaveh: My people built the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.

Robin has strong organizational skills.  He set Miguel and Frank to work sorting all of the feathers by size and color.
Miguel: This is hard work.
Frank: I'm getting hungry.  Are there any cupcakes?

Next, Benjamin Roy and Pete began the task of sticking the feathers on the turkey.  Anthony helpfully peeled the backing paper off all the feathers.
Benjamin Roy: Annabelle is helping, too!  Good job, girl!
Annabelle: Woof! 

Emile and Sasha continued with feather placement, with Emile assuming the supervisor role.  He said that because he is French, he possesses a highly aesthetic sense.  Some of the feathers didn't stick very well, so Anthony hunted down the double-sided tape.
Emile: They must look natural, but not too natural.  Random, but not too random. N'est-ce pas?
Sasha: Huh?

Patrick and Frank completed the feathering and added an important, almost forgotten, finishing touch.
Patrick: Something's not quite right with this turkey.  Something's missing.
Frank: Yeah, the mashed potatoes and gravy.

Patrick: Good guess, but no.  I think the eyes, actually.

The boys are rightfully proud of their creation.  They wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Let It Snow, Part 2 (First Snow)

John:  Benjamin Roy was very excited it snowed yesterday.  He's never seen snow before!  Before he came to live with us, he was never out of his box.

So, we took a short walk around the garden early this morning so he could experience his first snowfall.  I did ask him if Pete Dakota wanted to join us, but he said Pete was still sleeping and said, quote: "I'm not getting out of bed until it's as warm out there as it is in here."

BR:  It's so pretty!  The yard looks so nice.

BR:  Too bad there's not enough to build a snowman.

BR: Can we go in now?  I'm a little cold.
Daddy John:  Should we make some hot chocolate for everybody?
BR: Yay!

Friday, November 18, 2016

Let It Snow, Part 1

Steve:  First snowstorm of the season; Winter has finally arrived in Gregoropolis.  Not everyone is excited about it.

Anthony: Sigh
Giancarlo: Sigh

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Love That Corduroy (Throwback Thursday)

Steve:  The boys of Gregoropolis are big fans of the Jadzia label corduroy coats for sale on eBay.  They are beautifully made and always have such pretty linings.  Here, Sasha (newly restrung--thanks, Dr. Pat!) models one in brown.

He reminds me of another little blond boy in a similar corduroy coat from long ago.  Yes, that is Daddy Steve in 1972; back when I had blond hair myself (later turned dark, now turning gray).

This was pre-Sasha; back when the favored dolls were Ken and Brad.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Lunch Buddies

Frank:  Hey Patrick, I'll do your home work if you give me your cupcake!
Patrick:  I've already done it.
Frank:  Oh...

Frank:  How about if I do your chores?
Patrick: They're done, too.
Frank:  Oh...
Patrick:  But I'll split with you.

Frank:  Aw thanks, Patrick.  You're the best!

Frank:  Can I have the half with the frosting?

Sunday, November 6, 2016

We're Supposed To Be Raking

Steve: Robin, Giancarlo, and Kaveh volunteered to help me rake yesterday.  Weather was so nice-almost 70 degrees.  In Minneapolis! In November!

Turned my back for a second.  Just one second; and this is what I turn back around to.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Trick-or-Treat! (Halloween 2016, Part 4)

Steve: It's Halloween and everyone is excited.  John has taken Benjamin Roy and Pete Dakota out trick-or-treating;  Anthony is manning the front door, ready to pass out candy; and the other boys are sitting upstairs, watching a monster movie (against my better judgment).

Anthony:  It's been a slow evening so far.  The rain could be keeping kids inside tonight.

Anthony: This 'Headless Horseman' is a cracking good story!

Sasha: Hi Anthony.  Can I sit down here with you and pass out candy?
Anthony: Hello Sasha, of course you can.  I thought you were watching a movie with the others.
Sasha:  I was, but I got, um, a little scared.  It was about b-b-Bigfoot and I don't want to watch any more.

Sasha: Aahh!  It's Bigfoot come to get me!  No, don't open the door, Tony! 
Anthony: Don't be silly, Bigfoot doesn't even live in Minnesota.
Sasha: No!  He's come to take me away!  Don't open it!
Anthony: Bigfoot wouldn't ring the doorbell, now would he?

Benjamin Roy and Pete Dakota:  Trick or treat!

BR: (deep voice) I'm Batman!
Pete Dakota: I'm a bird, I'm a plane, I'm Superman!

SashaOh, I'm so glad it's you guys!
AnthonyYou guys look great, those are awesome costumes! Did you get lots of candy?
BR: Oh yeah, we did very well.
Pete Dakota: We had a lot of fun!  There were some kids with really great costumes!

Sasha: Whew!  I feel so much safer knowing that the Man of Steel and the Caped Crusader are watching the house.  Bigfoot wouldn't dare show his big face around here!