Sunday, December 28, 2008

More Babies

Erin & I are at that stage of our lives when we think all our recently-married friends and family should be having babies. Here's our list of recently arrived and highly anticipated babies (in no particular order, mind you)...

Baby Wells (Julie & Mike)
Sarah Katherine Hagerty (Nicole & Bruce)
Marissa Rish (Deb & Heath)
Katy Jackson (Becky & Eric)
Baby Fisher (Michele & Chris)
Baby Swain (Carmen & Tim)
Levi Abney (Terri & Ben)
Baby Bonnell (Joe & his wife)

Looking to add to our list, so let us know. And if you have a boy, we have some clothes for you!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

30lb. Mouse

Erin and I were in the basement watching Arthur crawl around, bulldozing over everything in his path when we heard a noise coming from the air ducts. The noise was that tell-tale sound of little feet scurrying.

Erin: What's that noise?

Ryan: Probably a mouse coming in for the winter.

Erin: We can't have a mouse.

Ryan: We might. He was probably cold.

[silence (except for Arthur) waiting to hear the sound again]

Erin: Where is it?

Ryan: Probably came down the furnace vent and is crawling around.

Erin: You know that vent on the floor is open.

Ryan: It's an intake. He's probably on the other side of the filter.

Erin: I'm going upstairs. [scoops up Arthur and goes upstairs]

[a few seconds later]

Erin: Ryan, get up here; you have to see this!

Henry: Cheerios raining.

[later that day on the phone]

Nate: Well, now the food is there for when the mouse does come.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Henry's letters


These may not mean much to you, but for Henry these letters represent his family. When he sees these letters, he identifies them by a family member's name.

For example, when he saw a AAA sign, he told me, "Three Arthurs, Daddy."

I replied, "Oh Henry, one Arthur is enough."

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Check this out

I was digging through some files and came across this. The file info says that I made it, but I have no idea why or for whom. All I know is that it was a family picnic that I missed because I was in Dar es Salaam, but Erin was there. Too funny. The front is supposed to read 1998 Family Reunion.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


An HHH mashup using some clips of the boys.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Henry's ?s

If a branch of a tree falls to the ground, it becomes a stick. But what is it in the air during its fall? Is there a philosopher in the house? Nate?

The actual conversation went something like this...

H: Sticks in the tree.
R: When sticks are in the tree they are branches.
H: Branches in the tree.
R: Yep.
H: Sticks on the ground.
R: Yep, sticks on the ground.
H: Branches in the tree, sticks on the ground.
R: Yep.
H: Sticks in the sky.
R: Branches fall to the ground and become sticks.
H: Branches in the sky.
R: I'm not sure if they are branches or sticks when they are in the sky.
H: Branches and sticks in the sky.
R: We'll ask Mommy.
H: Mommy in the sky?

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008


This picture makes Arthur look huge...not that he isn't.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Sturm und Drang

We were pretty lucky with the storm; I posted some pictures on our Flickr site. And the best thing is that our power is back on.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Good Job, Daddy

Sometimes it is a great feeling when Henry tells us, "Good job, Mommy" or "Good job, Daddy," like when we are drawing a picture with him. Sometimes it is just hilarious, like when we are sitting on the potty. Other times it comes across a bit sarcastic:

Pink House. Henry's favorite color is pink. He has discovered that if he dips sidewalk chalk in water he can get better coverage when he is "painting." I came around the corner the other day only to discover that he had "painted" several rows of siding pink on the back of the house. I explained to Henry that he was not to "paint" the house. I spent the next 30 minutes scrubbing the siding with water (and solvent in some parts). When I was all done, Henry said, "Good job, Daddy."

Locked In. We have a crazy garage door opener. Sometimes the button gets stuck and opens or closes the garage door at random. Henry and I were in the garage when the opener in the house shut the door on us. When the button is stuck on the opener, it cancels out the button in the garage. So we were stuck in the garage, and I was trying to figure out how to pop the pin before the automatic light went out. I finally found a pair of pliers and a hammer and got the door open. On cue, Henry said, "Good job, Daddy."

Diaper Disaster. Arthur considers a diaper change to be a wrestling match. He throws his head back, arches his back, and flips over like a wrestler not wanting to be pinned. Henry came in while I was in the thick of a nasty change/wrestling match. There was poop everywhere, and everything in the vicinity needed washed including much of what I was wearing. A half a box of wipes later, Henry said, "Good job, Daddy."

"Thanks, Henry."

Monday, September 8, 2008


The lawn mower. Thanks Tracy and Matt. You'll get what you know you have coming (a really, really annoying toy for James) one of these days.

Tracy and Matt gave Henry a toy lawn mower for his 2nd birthday. It blows bubbles. As soon as I saw it, I hid the basement. When we moved, it made it on to the truck and has resurfaced in the living room.

Now Henry and Arthur are obsessed with mowing. So much so, that we now have mowing rules, e.g., no mowing in the kitchen, no mowing before Arthur wakes up or after he goes to bed, no mowing the dog, no mowing Arthur. You get the idea.

Sorry about the song (not really); I just thought it was funny that I could get my extended family to listen to an annoying song (some of you may listen to it more than once).

Thursday, August 28, 2008


Paul asked how Arthur likes the new house. Well, he doesn't seem to agree with how we have arranged things.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Monday, August 25, 2008

Babysitting Conner

Who said Conner was a handful?


Our move was pretty exhausting, physically and emotionally. We found it hard to say goodbye to our home. When we bought the house we honestly thought, "Next stop, assisted living." When we moved to Newark, we thought we were there to stay. We made emotional investments in our home and the city of Newark, which made both very hard to leave. We will miss the great people we came to know and see everyday.

A change in career goals and rising gas prices prompted us to put the house on the market. We listed just before the bursting of the housing market bubble was felt on the local level in Newark. A long year on and off the market lulled us into an acceptance that the house was not going to sell anytime soon and that we really didn't have to think about moving very seriously.

Then a last-minute showing turned into an offer with a tight time line. And then we held our breath during the inspections, appraisals, and clearing of the newly erected hurdles for the buyers' financing. And we held our breath during a few hiccups that seemed as if they were going to dismantle the whole deal.

Then we closed. We looked at each other in disbelief. I could see in Erin's welling eyes that this wasn't what she signed up for. We had talked about it, but now we were really packing up and pulling out. We were selling our home: the place where Henry learned to walk and ride a balance bike, the place where Arthur first sat in a high chair, the place where Xola chewed through the drywall and ate insulation as a pup, the place where we celebrated with friends and family, the place where we mourned lost loved ones in private, the place where I came home for lunch everyday, the place where Erin's flowers grow and her goldfish swim, the place we still think of as home.

And the next day, we moved. With the help of family and some very special friends, we packed up a truck and moved to Columbus. We are renting a house: a house that will help us accomplish our goals, a house that will move us a step closer to finding a new place to call home.

Last weekend we passed through Newark on the way back from our friends' wedding, and it was very hard to look in the windows of our home and see the new family painting the walls and making our house their home.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Paula's 'Did You Ever!' List

I was sorting through some papers after our move, and I ran across this list written by my Grandma Rish. It's a photo copy, but it's in her handwriting.

Did You Ever! by Paula Rish
  1. Did your father die when you were 3 days old?
  2. Did you set the curtains on fire when you were 5?
  3. Did you raise a brother when you were five?
  4. Did you go to school in a covered wagon with horses?
  5. Did you ever warm an iron on a wood stove?
  6. Did you ever start a wood stove?
  7. Did you ever start school at seven and speak no English?
  8. Did you ever do your homework on the back of wallpaper?
  9. Did you ever go to school with an outhouse and 2 rooms downstairs and 2 up?
  10. Did you ever have a kerosene lamp you carried from room to room?
  11. Did you ever milk cows and watch them eat grass, then they would chase you?
  12. Did you ever hoe 5 acres of corn and chop snakes heads off?
  13. Did you ever live in furnished rooms on the 5th floor with cockroaches?
  14. Did you ever win a dance contest to Glenn Millers Band?
  15. Did you ever work for $3.00 a week?
  16. Did your family want you to leave when you got out of school?
  17. Did you ever die twice, once with 2 blood clots, another when the hospital broke my intestines?
  18. Did you ever have colitis 25 years and be pregnant?
  19. Did you ever stay home for 30 years because your husband wouldn't go out?
  20. Did you ever raise 2 sons and have no problems?
  21. Did you ever have $100,000 and go downtown?
  22. Did you ever feed people that can't use their hands?
  23. Did you ever feed bums and bag ladies and get a 5 cent tip?
  24. Did you ever to go to Florida 20 times?
  25. Did you ever go to Europe twice?
  26. Did you ever have an -ostomy?
  27. Did you ever sue three Doctors at a hospital?
Grandma was a character for sure. I continue to draw on the example she set...her selfless giving and her belief that everyone deserves a fair shake regardless of who they are or where they come from.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

More Cousins Please

Henry and Daddy playing the Uh Oh Name Game.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Dawes Arboretum

We added some pics from a trip to Dawes Arboretum.

We did more walking than picture taking, though. The rest are on the Flickr page.

Mommy took all the pictures...not nice Daddy.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The story behind "wucky tiger"

After we were married, we moved to Columbus so I could go to graduate school at OSU for the first round. I found a barber shop that I liked on High St. somewhere between Worthington and Clintonville. It was old school and inexpensive; you had your choice of one haircut, the barber used a straight razor to clean up your neck, and you didn't have to talk if you didn't want to...just the way I like my barber shops.

I tend to go a few months between haircuts, so I wasn't exactly a regular. Erin used to comment about the hair tonic that the barber was strong and reminded her of the Lucky Tiger tonic that her brothers' barber used on them when they were kids. Erin's brother Paul disliked the smell calling it "wucky tiger." I didn't care for it either and usually took a shower when I got home from the barber shop.

On one trip to the barber shop to bust down my puff and scruff, my barber asked me where I was from, who I was married to, and where she was from. I told him that Erin grew up on a dairy farm outside of Old Washington, east of Cambridge. He said not the dairy farm on Range Rd. run by Henry Wells. Turns out my barber, Pete, was the same barber that used to cut the hair of Erin's brothers. And I was indeed coming home smelling like "wucky tiger."

Just thought I'd share the "wucky tiger" inside joke; let me know if I am remembering the story correctly.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Just call me "wucky tiger"

The Drilla

Barber Shop

Yesterday at the barber shop, a father was explaining his rationale for pulling his son out of one school system and shopping around for a better system. His son will be a sophomore, scored a 28 on the ACT his freshman year, plays a solid outside linebacker on JV, and wants to become an engineer. His father lost confidence in the school system his son previously attended; he cited a drop in the property values in the district, an increase in minority enrollment, levy failures, and a subsequent decline in test scores and district rating.

The father is looking for a district that can serve as a better platform for gaining admission into competitive universities: a district where his son's class rank will have more weight, a district where the mean ACT score is higher (to improve on that 28), a district where his son might see some varsity playing time, a district that spends more per pupil, a district that passes its levies...which in effect, although unsaid, meant a district in central Ohio with a higher rating and less minorities.

The father is playing the game: a game defined by a historically unconstitutional school funding system, a game he has the social and financial capital to play, a game that is won and lost along lines of class and race, a game the father didn't create, yet a game he will play to win.

It's also a game that historically and in the present only has losers; we all lose by not providing equal opportunities and resources to all of our students, regardless of class and race. But it's also a game that elected and appointed officials have no incentive to change for the constituents that make up their power and campaign finance bases have no problems playing and winning the game.

In the May/June 2008 issue of the Journal of Teacher Education, eight contributors wrote letters to our next president. In Gloria Ladson-Billings' letter, she reframes the national conversation around the racial achievement gap to one of educational debt, shifting the focus from the students and teachers who aren't winning the game (irrespective of social and financial capital) to all of us, as members of a democratic society, who are complicit in sustaining the game and complacent with who the winners and losers are.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Henry's buggin'

Henry, Henry, why ya buggin'?

Henry brings us bugs, big bugs, small bugs, dead bugs, live bugs...he's into bugs.

Here's a pic of a fruit fly he brought me perfectly intact, yet dead. How he finds them, picks them up, and delivers them is a mystery.

That's 12 point TNR. Our camera can't even get that close.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Henry's Solo

Henry's daily solo for Arthur; it's usually good for 20 minutes of being able to get some housework done.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Thanks Grandma

Henry thanking Grandma Wells for letting him pick raspberries.

Memorial Decals

Lately I've become interested in bumper stickers and car decals during my commute to and from Columbus. As we all have observed, the back of a vehicle can be an interesting piece of real estate for all kinds of political messages, vacation locales, advertisements, sports teams, and well...identity work. In the past few years, I've noticed more personalization of messages on the backs of vehicles. Of particular interest to me are the "In Loving Memory" rear window decals. The decals typically include the name of the deceased and their birth and death dates. I've also noticed that the dates most often span only 1 or 2 decades, indicating that the death may have been untimely. Sometimes the silhouette in the center of the decal is of a child. I find it very interesting that this space on the back of vehicles is used as a memorial to lost loved ones and friends.

I find them interesting because this space, which is often used to mark a relationship with a political ideology (e.g., "Nobody died when Clinton lied"), an affiliation with a place of recreation (e.g., "OBX"), the use of a product (pick an advertisement), and/or support of a sports team (e.g., "I bleed scarlet and gray"), is being used to mark a relationship with an individual, an individual who has passed away.

The first memorial decals that I can remember seeing were military related (e.g., POW/MIA). Then the first decal that memorialized an individual that I noticed was for Dale Sr. (i.e., #3 with wings). Then it seemed to me that this space on the back of vehicles that was appropriated for memorials took a personal turn and the "In Loving Memory" decals started to appear. I'm not suggesting that there is a connection between these types of memorial decals; only that this is what I have observed in central Ohio.

Yesterday, a truck passed me with two of these rear window, memorial decals (both for children) and a bumper sticker centered at the top of the window that read, "My Sons Were Murdered." I let them in my lane.

Monday, June 30, 2008


Just a reminder that our blog exists most importantly for Mom to sneak a peek at her boys while at work.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Boys

I used some extra footage to goof around with...

Big Bike Ride

Henry went on an epic ride yesterday: around the block! It's about 1.5 miles and includes side walk, bridge over 16, suspension bridge over Raccoon Creek, and bike path. I wanted to shoot some of his downhill action, but I couldn't operate the camera and spot him (running alongside) while he was bombing down the hills.

Monday, June 16, 2008

The Debate Continues

Erin and Henry are convinced that this is a dog, while I think it is some kind of cat.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Good Times

New pictures are up of the kids at Mike & Julie's Father's Day picnic.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Going to Work

Henry said he was going to work the car.

Apparently, real work involves taking a walk in Mom's shoes. So true.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

No Work

In Henry's world...Mommy goes to work and Daddy...well he just spends a lot of time on the 'puter and calls it work.

One of our favorite songs around the house...

Saturday, June 7, 2008

More Haka

Suspending cultural essentialism for a moment longer...Henry's first attempts at learning the Haka.

We're not sure if the Kiwis on the team have something to do with it. Josh, Joe and Hayden have been over the house a few times.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Maori Henry

A little purple crayon goes a long way toward supporting Henry's favorite pro cyclist David Clinger.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Arthur(s) Video

2 Arthur's in 1 video @ Will & Natalie's wedding.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Toddler Bed

First nap attempt after converting the crib to a toddler bed.


We're not sure how hippos came to live in Henry's arm pits, but we're pretty sure Daddy had something to do with it.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


This is how it starts...between brothers. Since Henry's recent ear infection, he's been obsessed with boogers in your ears.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Monday, April 28, 2008

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Janet McLallen Hagerty

EDINBORO, PA – Janet McLallen Hagerty, 88, of Edinboro, died Wednesday, April 16, 2008 at Bedford University Hospital in Ohio. She was born in Edinboro on July 28, 1919, the daughter of the late Hoyt and Ethel Ryan McLallen.

Janet was a 1938 graduate of the Edinboro High School and then attended Edinboro Normal School for 3 years.

She was a past member of the Garden Club, the Shadbush Club and the Order of the Eastern Star - Edinboro Chapter #359. Janet was also a member of the First United Presbyterian Church of Edinboro.

She was preceded in death by her loving husband, James Hagerty in 1986, and a sister, Jean Culbertson.

Survivors include her daughter, Kay Rish and her husband, Henry of Boston Heights, OH; a son, Paul Hagerty and his wife, Patricia of Edinboro; a sister, Louise Fuller, of Meadville; five grandchildren, Ryan Rish, his wife Erin, Nathan Rish, his wife Aerie, Bruce Hagerty, his wife Nicole, Erin Richer, her husband Jeff, and Colleen Martin and her husband Robert; also, six great-grandchildren.

Friends may call at the Glunt Funeral Home, 210 Erie Street, Edinboro, on Sunday, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. An Order of the Eastern Star Service will be held there at 8:30 p.m., Sunday. A funeral service will be held there on Monday at 11:00 a.m. with Rev. John Dietz officiating. Burial will be in Edinboro Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Edinboro Fire Department, PO Box 776, Edinboro, or the First United Presbyterian Church of Edinboro, Edinboro, PA 16412. To send condolences please visit

A Rare Moment

Henry's yelling at a wasp on the window.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Art's Pictures

Even though we said we wouldn't, we've been slackin' on the second one.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Thursday, April 3, 2008


Great Grandma Rish would be proud.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Paul's Wedding

Bike racing can be beautiful

I was building my new team bike this week and thinking about bike racing. I had recently read an article about the etiquette of improvisation in jazz jam sessions.

The article gave an insider's perspective wherein "everyone pay[s] close attention to the other players and [is] prepared to alter what they are doing in response to tiny cues that suggest a new direction that might be interesting to take...everyone understands that at every moment everyone (or almost everyone) involved in the improvisation is offering suggestions as to what might be done next, in the form of tentative moves, slight variations that go in one way rather than some of the other possible ways...some of these suggestions begin to converge and others, less congruent with the developing direction, fall by the wayside. The players thus develop a collective direction that characteristically...feels larger than any of them, as though it had a life of its own."
Most criterium racers could offer a similar account. When you are in tune with your teammates' abilities and limitations and can respond accordingly, bike racing can be as beautiful as jazz.

Just a thought as I'll miss not having much time to jam with teammates this season.

"Clearly, we could identify a whole range of kinds of situations, varying between the two poles of those that work on the basis of an etiquette that recognizes and maintains a formal ideology of equality of status and those whose etiquette requires recognition of differentials in the contribution made to the collective effort."

Becker, H.S. (2000). The etiquette of improvisation. Mind, Culture, and Activity, 7(3), 171-176.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Shoveling Snow

Big snow for central O-HI-O.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Cake Buddies

In the Hagerty-Rish tradition of birthday cake sharing, Happy Birthday Erin Kay, Ryan, Ben and Arthur!

Friday, February 29, 2008

New Arrival

Arthur Gabriel Rish 9 lbs. 22 in. born @ 12:15pm

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Sibling Training

Henry is preparing for the arrival of his brother.

In other news, the words are coming fast and furious, often in strange combinations. We're having a little trouble with the "iPotty," so far we've avoided any mishaps.

Friday, February 15, 2008

The Wiggler

yIt's never relaxing sitting on the couch with Henry.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Erin's I Am Poem

Since Colleen posted her I Am poem, I asked Erin to compose one in the hopes that more of our family would as well. She had fun writing (dictating) this, we hope you have fun reading it.

I am tired and huge.
I wonder if our house will ever sell.
I hear too much traffic.
I see not enough of the inside of my eyelids.
I want to have this baby.
I am tired and huge.

I pretend I can do everything.
I feel overwhelmed.
I touch my son's hair (whenever he will let me).
I worry I'm aging too fast.
I cry when I crack.
I am tired and huge.

I [don't] understand anything anymore.
I say I'm fine.
I dream of more time.
I try and I try and I try.
I hope that 4 years is really 4 years.
I am tired and huge.

Many of you may not share our sense of humor, but know that we were laughing the whole time Erin was writing (dictating) this.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Kitty's Revenge

For all of you cat lovers who were distrubed by the original.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

I Am Poem

Yesterday, I observed one of my pre-service teachers. During the course of introducing his students to the Harlem Renaissance using Langston Hughes' "Theme for English B," he had his students write an I Am poem using a template of line starters in stanzas. I decided to break from taking observation notes, and filled out the form poem myself:

I am a husband and a father;
I wonder if I am a good one.
I hear toy trucks crashing on the floor.
I see my son standing on the kitchen table.
I want to meet our new baby.
I am a husband and a father.

I pretend to be in control of my life.
I feel joy when my family laughs.
I touch my wife's belly.
I worry our new baby will breathe.
I cry at the thought of our children in pain.
I am a husband and a father.

I understand having children changes everything.
I say that you need to be tough.
I dream of family bike rides.
I try not to lose my temper.
I hope that I am a good one;
I am a husband and a father.

I know, pretty cheesy. I'm always encouraging my pre-service teachers to participate in the activities they assign, so I felt a need to do so as well.

I'm posting it here in hopes that you write one too; if you do let me know.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Hippo & Dog

We're (Henry included) new fans of Pat & Stan; thanks Steve P.

The fact that we don't know what they're saying is probably a good thing.

Friday, February 1, 2008

What mom doesn't know...

This is what really happens while Mom is at work.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Henry names his brother

I think we'll call him Don for short.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

TMBG + Nose Talent = Randomness

Just thought I would share...They Might Be Giants is podcasting a Friday night video podcast for families. Think Flying Circus meets the Electric's pretty cool, Henry digs it. We're just strange like that.

And in other family of the larger noses in the family is now peddling Masi bikes online. That's all I got.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Keep on Truckin'

As you may know, Henry has a healthy truck obsession. Trucks are involved one way or another in most of Henry's daily activities, as well as ours.

Since becoming a full-time student and spending most of the day with Henry, I've become a regular reader of The Mom Spin: A Local Blog for Moms. (Erin reads it too.) So, I thought I would a.) admit this and b.) share her blog entry about...trucks! Enjoy.

And a quick video of studying while truckin', or is it the other way around?

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Sunday, January 6, 2008