B’s first snowman, about two feet tall. We couldn’t find much else for the eyes and mouth, and I can’t stop laughing at it.
We took a little day trip up to Storm King with some friends this past weekend on the most terrifyingly summery day of Autumn.
B seemed to love it. Of what we saw, I think that Calder’s The Arch and Noguchi’s Momo Taro were his favorites. I think he was just bowled over by the scale of The Arch, every time he saw it on the horizon he shouted “SCULP-TURR!!”. And he got a real kick out of sitting in and rambling over Momo Taro.
I was 90% sure that he and his little friend were allowed to crawl all over Noguchi’s piece based on Storm King’s guide and map. But I didn’t really know the extent of it until I looked up the piece on Storm King’s site just now.
The full realization of Momo Taro depends on the interaction of visitors, who are invited to not just touch, but to enter, to sit, and to unite their bodies with the work — to participate in its existence. Noguchi’s flat bench provides a welcome site for rest and contemplation. The “center” of the piece — the hollowed-out granite “peach pit” — serves as a peaceful retreat. Even on the hottest summer days this interior remains cool. Noguchi expressed his wish that visitors, especially children, would not only climb into the cavity but also sing inside it and enjoy its special aural resonance.
🥲 Wish granted! B’s buddy declared the “white one” to be her favorite sculpture when they left the park.
And B was such a trooper, he walked all over the Meadows and Museum Hill before we took a loop around the park in the tram. Then we headed back to the cafe for some lunch and picked up the stroller to walk all the way over to see Andy Goldsworthy’s Storm King Wall.
I was looking at the map on our way home and couldn’t believe how much we missed considering we spent about six hours there. We basically didn’t do the North Woods, Maple Rooms, or South Ponds at all. But it was never about completionism, it’s a good excuse to plan a trip back soon. Would love to go in the summer to check out Moodna Creek as well, though I don’t think it’s safe for swimming.
Not gonna show any photos of sculptures because too many of them have B in them, and there are better photos of them online anyways. But the landscape was gorgeous, so here’s some overexposed sky and grass.
We made it up to the northernmost stanza stone with B. He wasn’t thrilled about the whole walk, but he did love squishing his boots in the mud and chowing down on a vegan Greggs sausage roll.
During lunch one day, we heard an insane screeching in front of my sister-in-law’s house. A sparrowhawk had caught a bird not much smaller than itself and was squeezing its talons around it, with its wings fanned out on guard and its head darting around to spot competitors. We wanted to intervene, but it would have been pointless. The sparrowhawk needed to eat (and well done for catching such big prey!), and the other bird seemed likely too injured to survive. It took a long time though.
Photo taken by Sam on his dad’s RICOH GR1v.
The entire tree was covered in rows of these woodpecker holes, head to foot. I’m pretty sure it’s a crabapple. Supposedly sapsuckers drill these holes and come back for a sweet drink every once in a while. These holes are probably old, there shouldn’t be any sap flowing yet this year.
We finally took B to the UK for the first time after two forcibly cancelled visits. Just got back on Wednesday night quite late. We had plans pretty much every day we were there, which was pretty nuts, but we got to catch up with so many people.
There were a lot of firsts: B’s first birthday, B’s first steps, B’s first time meeting his cousins and so much other family, B’s first time on the moor, B’s first time in a carrier backpack, our first night away from B (a fancy dinner + hotel in the dales, we’ve never done something like that before), our second night away from B (we got to have a party! with lots of friends!), B’s first cake (and second and third… there was a lot of cake). B’s first time in over 90-degree weather. Would have expected that to be in Brooklyn, not the north of England…
And of course, B’s first transatlantic flights. All things considered, he did really, really well. He doesn’t like three-hour customs lines, but frankly, who does.
We took B to the cottage for the first time. The weather was a bit grey and cool, but it turns out we were lucky. A huge storm ripped through right after we left which took down a tree and made it impossible to reach, also knocked out the power for two days. Followed by temps in the 90s, and B hates heat like that. So it worked out!
Lots of sitting on Great-Grandpa’s bench swing, massive bubbles, sunsets, good food, playing with balls bigger than he is. And we got two afternoons at the beach on the lake. Turns out he absolutely loves cold water. He would crawl up to it, be shocked by a small wave, and then hastily crawl away laughing his head off. And repeat, for 30 minutes. The only things that would distract him was trying to eat pebbles, and shoveling sand into his mouth.
Everything and nothing is normal.
Four years ago today, in the V&A’s porcelain courtyard expansion not long after it opened. Was getting ready for an evening rehearsal outside, very chilly.