1967: Our son was born this afternoon. What a relief to have it over with and how proud we are of our Ned. Walt is beaming like a Cheshire cat and I'm pretty happy myself. Labor was long (about 11 hours) and harder than I remember with Jeri, but once things really got underway, they went very quickly. I've only seen Ned for a few minutes but he has a head full of hair, dark eyes, and such a tiny face! He wasn't as blue as Jeri was.
I miss my little punkin so much tonight. I'm anxious to get back home and introduce her to her brother.
1968: When Ned opened his xylophone, he lost all interest in other boxes and left the opening to more capable hands, while he played with his new toy.
Ned is certainly a music lover. If no record is playing and the TV is off, he runs over, pointing to the record cabinet and when he catches my attention, points to record player and starts bouncing up and down. He's very good about not hauling records out any more and seems interested in the record cabinet only as a source of music.
1969: Today Ned is 2 years old. My little 2-year old is a chubby, talkative, willful, loving, daring little guy. We had to drive Walt to work this morning and Ned spent the whole ride with his arm around Paul, leaning down now and then to kiss the top of Paul's head.
1970: Ned's 3rd birthday is now history. The party was from 11-1. The kids arrived and took paintbrushes and poster paints out to the back yard to paint the back fence. The fence turned out to be sort of a monochrome. When they finished and began body painting I ran a pool full of water to wash them off.
(note from 2017: We thought it was a great way to have a party, only we didn't realize that poster paint would soak into wood and when we moved to Davis, 3 years later, the fence still had vestiges of the blue paint!)
1971: Ned's party was a great success. We started picking everyone up and giving them all firemen's helmets Then we visited the local fire station, where everybody got to climb all over the equipment. Next, we drove up to Tilden for a ride on the train, rode through Berkeley to Shakey's pizza parlor for dinner, back home for cake and presents. At Shakey's everybody went to the bathroom together. Ned was in tears because Steven Jones had flushed and he should have been able to flush because he was the birthday boy.
1972: Ned's 5th birthday is now history. Saturday was the kids' party at Tiny Tots. All the kids donned pirate bandanas, made swords and eye patches, hunted for "buried treasure" (foil wrapped chocolate coins), had cake and juice and just played until time to go home. Ned received a Chinese checkers set and I let him stay up extra late and had a game with him, which made him feel really pleased.
1974: Ned's party was really fun. The boys arrived at 2 and immediately Ned opened his presents--a long, drawn-out procedure lasting all of 5 seconds. Then we had a Superman cake, which took another, oh, say 10 minutes. Then while I got myself together, the kids played with the new toys a bit and we left for the pool ... I was immediately jumped by almost everyone and spent the better part of the next hour and a half underwater. It was rally fun wrestling with the kids in the water.
1975: There were few guests--jut Matt, Scotty and Alex. The boys first opened Ned's presents, then we played "Pin the S on Superman" and then had a treasure hunt. Finally we had a "Spidey stunt" where the kids had an obstacle course to run on the gym set and dome. Ned was by far the fastest at that game. I made ribbons for all the boys, blanket binding cut into 6" lengths with "1st place, Spidey Stunt" etc on it. After the games were over the boys put together Ned's new "Six Million Dollar Man" model and then we had the Spiderman cake I baked at Ned's request.
1976: Ned is 9...and the last of his parties is over. Three of his friends came at noon today --the other four kids he invited couldn't come. Ned opened gifts and then we went to Straw Hat for lunch. The boys were really nice, watched the movie, devoured 3 pizzas and each played a electronic game, Trapshoot. Then it was back home for one relay race (for which each won a game of cards) and cake -- I made a frog cake, which turned out really cute.
1977 was the last year that I kept a journal until I started Funny the World in 2000, but poor Ned's birthday was not the best. I made a big cake to take to the pool, since three kids on the diving team had birthdays, but while we were getting ready to go, our dog Mutt collapsed and had to be rushed to the vet. He had a slipped disc and eventually had to be put to sleep. Happy birthday, Ned--we're going to kill your dog.
Today is Ned's 50th birthday and we are going to take him out to dinner and then watch the new 25-minute movie he made with some of his friends' kids at Tahoe this summer. I'm anxious to see it!