The Connolly Family

The Adventures of Matt, Shannon, Liam & Paige

Month: October 2008 (page 1 of 3)

Happy Halloween and Happy Birthday Pok!


 From Spidey and Steve Prefontaine(and Shannon as Annie Leibovitz, too)

 UPDATE: Another shot of “Pre” at work:


Teenagers Should Be Shot On Sight

This is my new policy, parents beware:

If you allow your ill-mannered children out on Halloween night in my neighborhood and they are 1) clearly illiterate and 2) extraordinarily inconsiderate and therefore either can’t read the sign that says to take ONE piece of candy or the other part of that same sign that says a baby is sleeping inside the house or just don’t care and first read the sign but then scream and steal all the candy I will be forced to shoot your children.  The fact that I am a pacifist who fervently believes in gun control will have no bearing on this edict.  Chocolate theft is serious business.  Consider yourself forewarned.

Liam Is The Champion

Just in case you weren’t sure…






Oh, and he’s NUMBER ONE (or number 6…)!


(Massive) Roundup

 Liam already knows where he’s going to school:



More Spidey:




Spidey and Superman:


Spidey and Mommy:




Spidey and Grammie:


Wait–Grammie’s talking to other people?


I’ll show her!


Wait…I’m stuck!







Spidey and Pop:


Swingin’ Spider:



I’d watch out if I were you, Grammie…



At the Botanical Gardens:













Dried beans in a jar–what more could a kid want?


The Great Macaroni Trials…





This one’s for Gran:


Well Mom, if you think closing the curtain will keep me out, watch this:


Gratuitous cuteness:




I need both my woobie and my hands–what shall I do?  Aha!




In the beginning, I lost my mind (which was a necessary first step).  Then came my dignity (as I huffed around town in capris and socks with my iPod slapping very attractively against my flopping stomach).  Next up were my ankle and subsequently my knee (see earlier post).  The most recent casualties were my hip, my groin, and for good measure, my toenail:


My initial goal was to cross the finish line and my stretch goal was to run the whole thing.  Now I’m thinking if I make it to Thanksgiving without a transfusion or the loss of a limb I’ll be doing pretty dang well…


Before Liam was born, my mom got us a subscription to Growing Child.  If you haven’t already heard about this newsletter/reference it’s really fantastic and very helpful to any parent (not just first-timers like Matt and me).  Anyway–the other day Matt was talking to me about something he read in the latest e-newsletter we got–a process called habituation.  Here’s how Growing Child defines it:

“Habituation occurs when an infant, after being repeatedly exposed to the same stimulus, eventually loses interest in that stimulus.  For example, if a baby is placed in a room where there is occasional loud noise (such as the sound of traffic) the baby will at first become startled every time loud noises occur until she eventually becomes “habituated” to those noises and therefore won’t pay any attention to them. She will only exhibit a startle response when she is exposed to a new, unfamiliar noise, such as an ambulance siren. ”

Matt theorized that this is the reason that Liam doesn’t listen me when I call his name anymore–clearly he’s decided that only new noises are interesting and has moved on (which does appear to be true).  Liam is very quick to figure out a new noise, toy, or sensation and then after he’s figured it out he’s finished with it and moves on to newer, more exciting things (like playing in the oven).  Then Matt went on to explain this part:

“The speed with which habituation takes place has been found to be related to later IQ scores. When the habituation rate of 4-month-old babies was tested, for example, it was found that those who habituated the soonest had higher IQ scores and better language development when tested again at 3 and 4 years of age.”

Matt decided that this clearly means that Liam’s a genius and of course I agreed, but now I have a question: Does quick habituation to something (say the sound of the full recycling bin crashing to the floor in calliope fashion–which the first time causes fearful crying, the second time elicited a shriek, and from then on has resulted in no acknowledgement that a large bin of glass and plastic is now all over the floor) mean that he’s got a high IQ which is mitigated by the fact that he continues to repeat the action over and over, thus proving that he’s insane (doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result) or does it simply mean that he’s some sort of a habituation savant and that he’s actually not too bright?

Death In The Connolly Household

All three of us are fine, and (I’m not sure whether this is good or bad) my innocence bit the dust a long time ago, but there has been a recent death in the house. To fully explain this story I need to go back to last year.

So it seems that at some point during the work that was going on in our downstairs family room there was a cardboard box that became designated as the spot for all smaller home-improvement-type things (measuring tape, nails, screws, etc.).  It also seems that at some other point my husband designated this box as the perfect spot to put the dead bugs that he either found or killed while working downstairs.  I didn’t discover this until a few weeks ago after the box in question had been moved upstairs and I made the unfortunate carcass discovery while looking for a spare nail.  It wasn’t pretty (my reaction or the actual bodies), to say the least.

Fast forward to last week.  It was the end of the day and I was completely exhausted.  It had been a long very-short-nap-filled day, my ankle was swollen, my knee was aching and I was ready to have dinner and go to bed.  Matt was putting Liam down in the other room, so I was quietly trying to put some leftovers in a bowl and carry them downstairs to relax with a little Tivo.  That’s when I heard it.  Shortly afterwards, I saw it.  It was some sort of a flying beast that would obviously attack and sting me multiple times about the face and neck if it got the chance.  I didn’t scream because Liam was sure to be almost asleep by this point, but I did what any sensible 29 year old woman would do and I ran away.  After Matt came downstairs (much later because, as it turned out, he thought that I had gone downstairs for some alone time) to find me I informed him of the situation and told him that I wasn’t going back upstairs until he found and killed the thing.  He spent a great deal of time looking but didn’t manage to locate the hairy beast anywhere.  Then he convinced me to come upstairs (which basically only succeeded because I was completely exhausted and my bed is upstairs) where I had daydreams about being attacked in my sleep, but managed to fall asleep and stay that way, attack free.

Fast forward to this afternoon.  I (once again) needed a nail and I glanced in the bug graveyard to see if I saw any.  Right there on top was the hairy, stinging, beastly (and obviously extremely poisonous) creature.  He clearly knew that I was too much of a match for him and died in the only appropriate place in which to do so.  For this, I am grateful.


Playing with his soccer ball:


Playing with his soccer ball under the chair:


Getting stuck playing with his soccer ball under the chair:


Sneaky face:


Who needs hands or utensils?

Not me!  I am the champion, my friend…


What happens when there are no child safety locks and Liam discovers something new:


That’s my boy!


Liam the Spider (Charlotte would be proud):









Visit with Auntie PJ:



Oooh, big buttons:


Oooh, there’re more down here:


Mmmm, buttons:


Fingers Crossed

And hopefully, ankles straight and steady.

Please send good thoughts my way tomorrow morning from about 8 until just after 10 as I’m going to make another go at a 10-miler.  I’ve run a couple of times on the treadmill since last week’s incident but this is my first time outside in the world of wet pine straw and uneven streets, so I’m a bit anxious.

I know I can do it, it remains to be seen if I will do it…

Ah, Puffs

Scene:  Tuesday morning in the Connolly household.  Matt is preparing to leave for work and Shannon is trying to eat breakfast with Liam (who was generally unhappy with the world until he was picked up) in her lap.

Matt: What’s the weather going to be like today?

Shannon: Hold on, let me check. (opens up laptop to search for the forecast)


Shannon: Here (hands Liam container of puffs and continues searching for the weather report).

Matt: I’ve gotta go, do you know what the weather’s going to be like yet?

Shannon: No–it’s taking me a minute.  I’m trying to get the page to load and there’s a child in my lap swiping at the keyboard. (motions head towards Liam and looks down)

Shannon: Liam!

Liam: (has opened the container of puffs and is now literally elbow deep in it).

Matt: What’s going on?

Shannon: (motions towards Liam)

Liam: (has now taken an entire handful of puffs and is trying to stuff them all in his mouth at once).

Shannon: Ah, that’s my boy.

End scene.

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