I don’t know where the month of March went. Wherever these things go when they happen and are gone. They come back again, I guess, but never the same.
We all grow- myself mostly outwards, Sam straight up and down, and Gracie by leaps and bounds. Annika has much less hair, and more or less the same amount of fire in her eyes.
Sam is tall, maybe 44 inches, and willowy. Very strong though. He still runs and climbs almost casually, confident in his mountain goat sure-footedness.
Gracie has started laboriously hauling herself up onto things, usually while grinning and chuckling to herself. She is still cherubic, but becoming more angular in the face and body as she gets older. She will always be, of course, the Goblin Princess, but she looks less and less goblinoid as time passes. When she frowns, she looks remarkably like her mother.
Sam has the same open, goofy face that I did when I was younger. As he grows, I recognize more and more of myself. He still loves Star Wars and Lego (and especially Lego Star Wars) and building castles with his blocks, and lightsaber fights- but he also is growing to love playing finger-guns (he runs out of ammo and mimes tossing the empty weapon before drawing his invisible sword or knife), and the kid is a fucking prodigy wizard at Super Mario Galaxy. Boy, does he love Mario and especially “WeeGee”, or Luigi. He even loves the old Super Show from the late 80s, with Captain Lou Albano and Danny Welles.
His mom, who was just up Seattle having an awesome experience (read about it Here) brought him little stuffed Mario Bros, which he now adores with the fire of a 4 year olds passions. I can’t believe he’ll be 5 next month.
While Annika and Gracie were off adventuring, Sam and I did our own here in LA. We hiked deep into the ravines at Vasquez Rocks and found some sort of egg pods in a creek. We climbed and climbed on a huge wind-etched rock that had a series of hollows, crawl-spaces and mini-caves to explore.
There was a man with a female baboon at one of the parking lots at the park- that was sort of random and odd. I kept making SHAKMA! jokes, but Sam didn’t get them. He laughed, because he is a good sport, but he didn’t get them.
We sat at the counter at our favorite canyon country diner and ate a late breakfast. Sam begged for ice cream, at half a stack of toast, then ate one spoonful of ice cream and asked for more toast, which he devoured.
At home, we built castles, knocked them down, and shot at castles and each other with a Nerf dart gun.
There was a power outage Thursday night for about two and a half hours, Sam was bothered that the lights weren’t working, but he enjoyed the candles. When he woke up Friday morning, he jumped out of bed and turned on the over-head light and cheered like he had won a race.
We went to the Santa Monica Pier and rode the roller coaster three or four times, watched the people playing on the beach from high above in the Ferris Wheel, snapped and whipped around on the Scrambler, weaved and bobbed on the Pirate Ship. Sam insisted on riding the Sea Dragon after a little girl told him it was “really, REALLY scary!” while on the pretty tame Pirate Ship.
She wasn’t wrong. On the Sea Dragon, once the ride was swinging out at the extreme of its arc, Sam hunched over the grab bar yelling “Oh, Oh, Oh ‘it! Oh ‘it! Oh ‘it!” He can’t say “sh” easily, if that helps. When the ride finished, we wobbled off and I asked Sam if he wanted to go on it again: “No WAY, Da, no way!”
But he did love the roller coaster. I stopped white-knuckling after the 2nd or 3rd time, I think. I don’t really like rides, but I love seeing Sam so happy, so I fed off his fun and never regretted it- even if I did say out loud “what the hell was I thinking?” the first time the coaster started it’s clackity-clack climb.
Sam adores his “Uncle” Shelby. I’ve known Shelby since I was 14 or so, and I heartily endorse Sam’s fandom. Luckily for Sam, Shelby returns the adoration and on Saturday they played and played from 11 till 5, when Sam and I went to pick up Grace and Annika at the airport.
I missed my wife and my goblin daughter while they were gone, but I will admit that the bed was nice and roomy and even with Sam in it, I never found my legs pushed off the side thanks to someone else like I did this morning.
Adventuring with Sam is exhilarating, and exhausting. Now it is Monday, and after 4 days of high adventure, I am back at low work. I miss the weekend, and the time we got to spend together, already.