Archive | 11:10 pm

Happy One-Week Birthday, Abby!

11 May

My new niece, Abby, spent her one-week birthday weekend much like she spent the rest of her first week of existence: sleeping and eating (and apparently, crying in the middle of the night too). She also met some cousins, modeled some adorable outfits, and of course, posed for many, many pictures, which you can see if you click here. I just can’t get over how cute and perfect and fun and little and awesome this girl is. She’s my niece, my sister’s daughter, my parents’ granddaughter. Wow. It’s still amazing to think about that. Have I mentioned yet how cool it is to have a niece? I’m still on a high. (If you’d also like to see Mitzi and Jason’s pictures from week one, click here.)

Tasty Tunes

11 May

I bought Abby her first CD last week: Snacktime by Barenaked Ladies. It’s the band’s first full-length CD for children, but I bought a copy of my own as well, and I have to say, listening to it while driving down to NY on Saturday made the trip so much more enjoyable. If you’re a longtime fan of the band like I am, you likely miss the novelty and fun that marked their earlier albums, particularly Gordon. Well, that sense of whimsy is all over Snacktime. There’s a song called “Popcorn” that’s basically a solid minute of the word “pop” over and over. The song “Crazy ABCs” is a typical alphabet song, except the lyrics start out like this: “A is for Aisle, B is for Bdellium, C is for Czar” and continue in similar fashion, with none of the words cited sounding like they begin with their first letter. Many of the 24 songs are two minutes in length or shorter, and nearly all are about things kids can get into, like “Vegetable Town,” “Bad Day,” and “Allergies,” which lists all the things a child can possibly be allergic to (bees, dust, wheat, etc.). Most songs work on multiple levels, like the best of the Disney movies do. For example, one of my favorite tracks is simply called “Eraser,” and it celebrates what that thing can do. Toward the middle of the song, there’s a break in the upbeat tune, and Steven Page sings, in his most deadpan serious style, the following lyric: “If I wrote you a letter, but I made an error, I could fix it … and make it better.” It’s humor that may go over most kids’ heads, but if you’re a parent (or a childless adult), you’ll appreciate it. As children’s music goes, this is the kind that doesn’t grate or annoy. Snacktime is fun, tuneful, and, um, tasty. It’s also one of my favorite BNL albums. I can’t wait till Abby hears Snacktime and enjoys it on her own. Until then, I know her parents will love it. And so will I.