Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Pants on

FIRE!

Not to disparage any of you, but if my few readers haven't already caught on to the fact that I'm a bold faced liar when it comes to promising to post, then, well... how to put it politely... you're either unquenchable optimists or just plain dumb!

As for the Christmas plot. I would say that it was a HUGE success! I woke up at 5am, showered, finished packing, walked Fanny and put all our luggage in the car. I took his change of clothes downstairs. We had to be at the airport at about 6:45am, so at 6:30, I woke Radar up with great excitement and told him it was time to go downstairs to see what gifts Santa had left under the tree (after doing pee pee, of course). He immediately woke up and we went downstairs, him giggling and me giggling, both of us tensed up with anticipation.

And then we got downstairs.

And the tension immediately released.

And we stared at the tree.

Then we looked at each other.

With a shrug of my shoulders, I said, “Huh?”

With a shrug of his shoulders, he said, “Huh?”

I immediately grabbed the phone and called Santa. He explained that there had been a misunderstanding and that he hadn't received the message I had left with Mrs. Claus on Christmas Eve.

Everybody makes mistakes.

We got on skype and called Grammy to see if indeed Santa had delivered the gifts to Casa Grammy.

She said that she was a little disappointed because she thought the gifts were for her, but she promised she wouldn't open them.

We changed Radar, got in the car and went to the airport. I went up to the counter and explained the emergency situation to the JetBlue agent. She understood and gave us seats on the airplane to Grammy's house.

And we went to Grammy's house and Radar got all his presents.

It was a great big success!

And Radar never got upset about the whole mess.

He's 3 and when you're 3 (instead of terribly 2), you're much more mature and don't freak out over stupid things like no presents under the Christmas tree on Christmas morning.

Instead... at 3, you reserve your meltdowns for more serious crisis... like when you get to Grammy's and you see the cereal dispenser has fruit loops in it and you tell your Mama you want fruit loops and she serves you a bowl with milk.

That's right... when you're 3, that is a proper reason to have a full-blown, punching, screaming, crying temper tantrum! Because you wanted to turn the damn handle on the cereal dispenser yourself and you didn't want any damn milk in your cereal! And that there is a good reason to melt down on Christmas morning!

Ugh.

Ok, and I also didn't take pictures of anything having to do with the Christmas plot... but here are a few pictures / video that I did take over the last couple of days, including Radar's first and very successful visit to the dentist!!!

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And that's it for this belated report.

Hope to see you one more time on this side of the calendar year!

Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Santa tracker

Feliz Noche Buena!!!


Today we are gearing up for the final episode of our 2011 Santa Plot (described in previous post & Antonio, I promise that when Radar becomes a proficient reader (as Tia Sara pointed out, likely within the year... I think that's what she said), if I catch him reading through old Radar Love posts, I will quickly delete any mention of there not being a Santa - including this one!)!

Over the past week, Radar has caught me twice talking on the phone to Santa, trying to clear up an apparent misunderstanding:

Me: No, no Santa. No, you must deliver the gifts to Radar's house, NOT Grammy's house.
(pause for Santa's feedback)
Me: I'm not sure why you thought that. We will be here, at Radar's house and we need the gifts to be delivered here. No, not to Grammy's.
(I look up to Radar to get his agreement and he nods in agreement).

And today we're going to use the awesome NORAD/GOOGLE Santa tracker to see Santa's progress. Of course, I imagine that cell phone reception in some of the more remote locations of the world might make it hard to get in touch with Santa, so I really hope he's got it straight!!!!


You can change the language up at the top, so have fun tracking Santa!!!

Finally, here's just a few pictures from our photo shoot yesterday where I tried to get a decent picture of Radar and Fanny sitting cooperatively and cutely... not such an easy thing to do!

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And finally, the winner (that I posted on facebook yesterday as our official Christmas card since I was way too lame to print & send real cards!)

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We wish you all a very Merry Noche Buena & I promise to post tomorrow about the success (or flop) of our Christmas plot!

Lots of love,
Titi, Radar, Fanny & Mulligan!

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Santa Plot

I'm pretty stoked that Radar 'gets' a lot more these days. It makes talking (or cursing) in front of him a little harder, but the upside is awesome. For example, he 'gets' that Christmas is just around the corner and that Santa will be coming to bring him a gift if he's a good boy (ok, so the 'you have to be a good boy or Santa won't bring you a gift' angle isn't really working that well). We even sat down and wrote Santa a letter and Radar decided on the gift he wanted - a camera. So now, whenever he sees a picture of Santa or Santa on the tv, he says that Santa is going to bring him a camera.


***spoiler alert - - - if you believe in Santa, please skip to the pictures below***

The thing is, since I have to do Santa's bidding and since none of Santa's elves build any toys here in Nassau, I have to place the Christmas orders online and have them sent to Grammy's house. And since there are no more mules running between South Florida and Nassau before Christmas, that means that when Radar wakes up on Christmas morning, there will be no presents under the tree. And for a 3 year old that 'gets' it - that just plain sucks!

So here's the Santa plot. Although we can't get the gifts here before Christmas, we do have a flight booked to go over to Grammy's on Christmas morning. And I'm not going to tell Radar about that flight. Instead, when we wake up Christmas morning and go downstairs and see NO presents under the tree, I'm going to get really upset and I'm going to call the North Pole! At that point, Santa will explain that he made a terrible mistake and that he delivered the gifts to Grammy's house. I am then going to slam down the phone and we are going to hurriedly pack our suitcase to get to the airport and get to Grammy's house! Of course we'll be calling Grammy somewhere along the line for her confirmation that Santa indeed drop by her house and that he indeed did leave Radar's gifts there.

The reason I think this plot will go over pretty well? See, Radar already thinks that adults are pretty dumb and he really enjoys being smarter than big people. So there's no reason to think that he won't enjoy believing that Santa is just as dumb as the rest of us big people!

Ok - here's a few pictures from yesterday when we put up and decorated our tree (that Santa won't be visiting this coming weekend). Pardon the "Rudolph" look... I didn't realize until I reviewed the pictures this morning that Radar had a clump of squash on the tip of his nose! Oh well!!!

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Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Friday, December 16, 2011

Happy Birthday my three year old Moon

at 8:37 tonight
whether you’re asleep or still awake
i’m going to kiss your sweet face
just like I did for the first time
exactly three years ago at 8:37

as beautiful a picture as words can paint
they just can’t quantify or explain
what you do for my mind and my heart
words fall short

because when you fall sleep
i still study every detail of your face
sometimes tracing the contours of those delicious chubby cheeks with my finger
in absolute wonder
and i actually feel a heat radiate from within me

i feel that heat a lot
when you sing a new song
mangling the words into the sounds as you hear them
or when you never fail to notice that the sun is going down
or that the moon is out
or that the sun has come back up

if i’d read every book in the world
and seen every movie and every play
and been given a lifetime to sit and create
some awesome fictional character with my words
i could never have come up with a character as
unique
and
wonderful
as you

but since words are what i can offer this evening
and since you might actually read these words one day
i’ll write the words that I say to you every single day

i love you i love you i love you
i love you more than the sun and the moon and all the stars in all the sky
i even love you more than all the chocolate in all the world

and to borrow from a poem I wrote to you when you turned 9 months old, it all still holds just as true!!!

Happy Birthday my Moon

If I could eat the moon with a spoon,
I know it would taste like you.

If every star was a fine tuned guitar,
You'd be all of the songs up there too.

If the great big sun was a big ball of fun,
It would be boring without your light.

And if this spinning earth hadn't seen your birth,
Then nothing would be quite right.

You aren't just my smart, silly, sweet special son,
You're my food and my music and all of my fun.

You aren't just a normal three year old boy...

You're my everything.
You're my life.
You're my joy.

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Thursday, December 8, 2011

A veritable Radar concert!

First letter to Santa

Radar didn't do the writing, but we agreed on what the letter to Santa should say and he made me write upside down while he was busy decorating the rest of the card.


More to come...

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Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A bear ate my dog

Today, December 7, 2011—a date which will live in infamy—the Christena Pazos of America (albeit living in the Bahamas and soon to be relocating to Costa Rica) suddenly and deliberately posted on the blog known as Radar Love.

Ok - I’m not a big fan of excuses. If my own appetite for other people’s excuses is any kind of gauge, then nobody is much interested in hearing my excuses (although thank you Marco for offering yourself up for blame). There are always exceptions of course… in the past I’ve tried to come up with excuses that might actually catch people’s attention and therefore get me somewhere. I confess that on more than one occasion, when being lectured about being late for something (maybe paying a bill or having to change a flight at the last minute), I have simply said, “I’m sorry, but a bear ate my dog.” And in all cases, that particular excuse has gotten me what I wanted (late fee waived, flight changed, etc).

In this case though, Fanny is fine, albeit feeling quite abandoned. As far as I know, there are no bears in Nassau, so I doubt any of you would believe that excuse anyway. All I have to offer is that November was simply a tough month. November has 30 nights (yes, and days). I spent 16 of those 30 nights away from home and apart from Radar. Four separate trips - to BVI, Panama, Panama again and Zurich. It’s now December, but as I write this, I am sitting in my hotel room in the Cayman Islands and next week I head to Costa Rica again for a few more nights.

I’m not complaining, but it has made sneaking in blog posts a little tough lately. When I get home, I want to maximize my Radar time and I have to deal with both his super clinginess, his extra snuggleness and his propensity for punishing me with dictatorial bossiness. Again – not complaining (wah, wah, wah…)

So – being that I’m in Cayman at the moment, I don’t even have my camera to post a few pictures or a video of my little king. But things should calm down now over the next couple of weeks as I’ve got very little on my plate (aside from Radar’s 3rd birthday on the 16th, both a doctor’s appointment and Radar’s first dentist appointment, visits to the vet to get travel vaccines and travel documentation for Fanny and Mulligan, Christmas, a trip to Florida, moving to Costa Rica in early January, registering Radar in a new school for both the spring term in Costa Rica and in Nassau for next fall, etc, etc.) and I should have plenty of time to be a better blogger!

Anyhoo… I will at least promise some pictures by tomorrow (and a video, if I can convince Radar) so that you can all see how my handsome and vivacious little boy continues to grow into who he is becoming (what?).

Lots of love,

Titi

Monday, October 31, 2011

My roach

He remains very excited to a be a cockroach for Halloween.


He was even excited about painting his face, and he insisted that HE paint his face.

And that has me thinking that maybe we could have done without the face paint!

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Happy Halloween!
Titi & Radar

I'm not sure & Contest

It's Halloween.


And even though I didn't get to go quite as overboard as I did last year, I'm still pretty excited about this evening's trick-or-treating & spook house (that being our house) events!

I think that Radar's also pretty excited (about the candy more than anything else)!

But I'm not entirely sure that everyone is as excited as we are...
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But I think I'm going to just ignore the 20 lb elephant in the room and get on with tonight's festivities!!!

I've received some pictures already, so please do send them in if you want to be considered for the Radar Love Halloween Grand Prize!!!

Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Monday, October 24, 2011

Third time's a charm

Not that the first two times weren't.


But really - on Hannah and Radar's third visit together, it really was all charm!

Well... like 90% charm for those of you that find shoving, hitting and all other forms of fighting less than charming.

Ok, then there was the nearly non-stop screaming. They sound exactly alike when they scream. If one would scream, the other would immediately pipe in. And we're talking about high pitched, glass shattering type of stuff.

But considering it was all happy screams, I'd say that falls under the charm category.

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And there was the refusal to pose together for pictures.

It was either one...

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or the other...

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It was like they were conspiring...

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But that too all falls under charm.

In fact, I take back the part about the 10% deduction for fighting... that's what brothers and sister are supposed to do.

And I find every bit of their relationship and interaction with one another charming.

So I will stick with the title line...

3rd time's a charm!

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Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

PS - Marco... I will indeed hold another Halloween costume contest... good idea! That's an easy post!






Sunday, October 23, 2011

4 years

It's been 4 years.
I seldom cry anymore.
But I often think of the first little heart that beat under mine.
I often think of Bennett.
He changed my life.
He changed my heart.
He made me a mother for the first time.

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Good night sweet boy.
I seldom cry anymore.
But I always love you.

-Mommy

Saturday, October 22, 2011

La Cucaracha

So, I guess my idea of continuing the blog roll in October has sort of been shot to shah-la-la!


Oh well. I was hoping that I'd dive back into my Halloween passion this October and thus, would have lots more projects to tell you all about. But this October has been (and will continue to be) full of travel and that makes home based projects a little more difficult. We're heading off again next Tuesday and we don't return until the evening of Saturday, the 29th... that really just gives me Sunday, the 30th (without a babysitter or any extra hands (other than Radar's (which, as cute as they are, aren't really that helpful with complex projects))) to decorate. So I guess this year will have to be somewhat scaled back.

No matter. That doesn't mean that I have to ditch the spirit altogether. And with that idea, I have been repeatedly asking Radar what he wants to be for Halloween. He had sort of settled on Pato (a goofy looking duck character from the tv show 'Pocoyo')...

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...until a morning a couple of weeks ago when I was in the kitchen and a giant cockroach surprised me by crawling across the counter.

I responded in my usual cool, controlled manner (ie, screaming and throwing the cup full of water that I had in my hand across the kitchen, missing said roach by 5 feet)!

And Radar responded to my reaction in his usual cool, controlled manner (ie, screaming with delight at my terror scream and laughing until he gets the hiccups)!

Then it occurred to me to ask if Radar wanted to be a cockroach for Halloween.

And I think that unlike last year's costume that I poured my heart and many hours into, only to discover that Radar hated it and wouldn't wear it... I think this year's efforts and time investment will be well worth it!!!

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There's a mask to go with the costume (it's still at Grammy's) and he'll be all in brown with gloves & shoes, but I think you get the point... this is one very happy Cucaracha!!!

Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bubble

I was trying to compose a blog post this weekend when Radar and I were sucked into a time warp bubble type of contraption thing! We're trying to figure a way out. I have no doubt that with the ingeniuty of our two minds, we'll find a way out by tomorrow or Saturday so that I can once again post!


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Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Enough said

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Tomorrow we head up to New York for our visit with Hannah & her family! Let's see if this bloggy lazy pants can get her act together and post something!

Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Why do it when he won't even remember?

On the weekend of September 10th, we made a quick weekend trip. On Friday I used my True Blue points on Jetblue to get two tickets to Dulles airport, connecting through Orlando. On Sunday, we used American Airlines frequent flyer miles to fly back home from BWI with a connection in Miami. The following Saturday morning it was back to the airport, American Airlines again - but this time they were two paid seats in coach that took us all the way to Spain and back, with connections on each leg. That's eight separate flights in the month of September alone.


Over the last ten years, I've done an awful lot of flying. Before Radar came along, it was still a pain to fly, but at least I had the whole routine down pat. I knew all the tricks for minimizing the hassles. It was all carry-on... quick layovers... upgrades or emergency seats... and no one ever rolled their eyes at me or sighed when they were behind me when going through security... I was fast!

That's all history now. It's hard to quantify the magnitude of 'worse-ed-ness' and 'pain-in-the-butt-ed-ness' of traveling with a small child - particularly airline travel - particularly single parent airline travel! I can no longer arrive at a destination in a 'ready-to-go' state. I am haggard, frazzled and exhausted. I always have to check in bags. I choose longer layovers. No more upgrades or emergency seats. And when people see me in the security line, they frantically move to another line to avoid being stuck behind me and when they do get stuck behind me, they most definitely roll their eyes and sigh!

Really... Radar is actually a good traveler and still, it really, really isn't easy (or fun much of the time) for me to fly with him. Yet at the age of 33 months, Radar's total flight tally is approaching 100! Sometimes after a particularly harrowing trip, I will often remind myself that Radar isn't even going to remember any of this. 100 flights. Dozens of visits to family and friends from the tip of Florida to the heart of Maine. Two trips to Spain. And he won't retain a single memory of any of it.

So why do it so much? Why not put the money aside and save it for trips he'll actually remember... like Disney when he's 5... or Spain when he's 8, etc, etc. There are some trips we can't avoid, but many, many more are planned with the full knowledge that it'll be exhausting for me and that he won't remember them.

And I guess the best answer I can come up with is that I think it's well, well worth it!

First - we all know that it isn't really a choice between traveling now or when he's a little older. I can't see a future where I'm not dragging Radar all over the place whenever an opportunity presents itself.

Second - as big of a pain as it is for me, it's even more of a joy. I guess it's like motherhood itself. To say it's easy is a lie... but it enriches everything. Radar has become my very favorite travel companion ever! I hate going on trips without him.

And most importantly - conscious memories aside... I believe that all this traveling is ingraining in Radar an ability to adapt to change, an appreciation for diversity and a verve for adventure.

So, with that theory firmly set in my belief system, we'll hop on yet another flight next Friday... this time back to New York where I'll be attending a "Single Mothers by Choice" conference and then we'll spend a long weekend with Hannah & her mommies in Long Island!

Lots of love,
Titi and Radar

PS - I read all your comments... both anonymous and identified... and I agree. I've long wanted to start really putting down on paper all the different branches and leaves of my Pazos-side (and that includes Vea, since our particular brand of Pazos was merged with a Vea) family tree and bring them to life with stories that people remember or have otherwise filtered down to us through time. Sounds like a goal... I'll give it some thought and get back to you on how you can help me accomplish it!

PSS - Although this post was all about traveling, I must say that it sure is nice to hang out at home for a couple of week... especially when home includes a year-round beautiful beach that most people would have to go through plenty of travel-hassles to get to!!!!

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This weekend at Old Fort Bay Beach