- Bret Holmes Baltimore Md

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I Kan't Spell

Friday, May 25, 2018

To Piper on her First Birthday
My last born turns 1 year old today.

The last year has been different than the other 2 children. With Ella we were helicopter parents, doing everything, being everywhere, taking all the photos and buying all the stuff. With Wells we were trying to basically reign in Ella while attending to Wells and trying to repeat the same level of experiences we had with Ella - this is impossible... but we tried.

Then Pickles showed up and we let were now so busy with all of Ella and 3/4 of Wells that you had to rough it on your own quite a bit. By the way you are called "pickles" because when you were born and through even to now - you are a big chubby baby - and I thought you looked a little like Don Rickles when you laughed - so I started calling you Donny PIckles and then just "PIckles" - people seem to like it.

Maybe some of that non-attention yields different kinds of children. Because while I love Ella more than anything in the world (equally to my other 2 children) she is a handful. She's willful, and needs attention, she's very smart and aware - but she can be tough. Wells is similar in some ways but easier and nicer to people - he's often very polite and is in touch with his feelings. You on the other hand are just the happiest creature I've ever seen. You laugh and laugh and laugh - you love to be held and picked up - but for the most part you never throw temper tantrums that can't be solved. You sleep through the night - you love to be held and hugged and snuggled - you are basically just a big ball of love and we couldn't have needed someone JUST like you more in our lives.

Your brother and sister love you very much. Your mama adores you with everything she has - and Me - well... I'll be getting to know you better as you get older - but I can tell you that your smile and your laugh when I come through the door and see you is the greatest part of my day. You are the best thing that's ever happened to our family and I look forward to seeing your spirit grow and shine in the years to come.

I love you Pickles!

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

The greatest 15 minutes of my life
*typing on phone because I didn’t want to have this feeling fade

Walking home in the dusk
Mid baltimore spring
Our neighborhood
Trees - some kind of them
——- I don’t know too many tree names
So many trees
My oldest daughter and I walking home in the dusk
She just finished lacrosse practice
She tries so hard
I’m so proud of her
I love her heart and how big it is
The smell of spring
She’s on her scooter pedaling
She wants to race me
She always wants to race me
She picks up a daffodil and makes a wish
She won’t tell me what it is
I ask her - she still won’t tell me
She picks another and says I’ll tell you
“I want you to be nicer”
It makes me sad - but still proud
She tells me to find one
So that I can make a wish
We’re in our neighborhood
She uses a big word
She uses another big word
I find a dandelion
I make a wish
She asks what it was
I say “for mama and I to start together and be happy”
She says “that’s crazy”
She sees a friend from her neighborhood
We go inside
The 15 minutes are over
I’m very happy - it’s a great way to end the day

Friday, January 05, 2018

A conversation with my daughter

So last night I talked - for real - for the first time with my daughter. From what I can recollect - this is how it went:

M: Is there anything you want to ask me about?
E: Is there anything you want to ask ME about?

We then proceeded to talk about your school, your friends and what you like to do. But it was so matter of fact - it was so "frank" (sorry for the double entendre) that I found myself feeling like I wasn't talking to a little girl. I was talking to my friend.

Then the conversation shifted.

E: What was home like for you?
M: Do you like your home?
E: Yes. But what was home like for you and grandma and grandpa.
M: Well, Jim isn't my grandpa.
E: *confused look Who is?
M: Well he isn't really around any more.
E: Why?
M: Well he wasn't very nice? Do you think mommy and I are nice?
E: Yes
M: Well, my daddy WAS nice when I was young - he was nice to me - but he had problems.

And then we talked about what school was like

E:What was school like for you?
M: Well you learn a lot more than I did. We only went for half days in Kindergarten and I didn't know how to read or add or basically anything until first grade. Well... I should say I wasn't taught most of that until 1st grade. My parents taught me a lot of that.
E: I like that I can read.
M: I know you do. I love you. Good night.

And then today she said to me "Are we continuing our conversation from last night?" I'm so in love with her I can hardly stand it.

Monday, October 02, 2017

A note to my kids

Dearest children,

Your father is sorry. I am sorry you are coming into this kind of world. I am sorry that I haven't done more to make this world a better place.

I'm sorry that we live in - what is becoming a corrupt desensitized, non-thinking culture. I hope that I can inspire you to read. That also means I have to show you how to stop watching tv. Some sports may be ok - but for the most part I need to show you how to learn - and not only how to learn - but how to value learning.

The world you will grow up in - may not value education as much as it should. There is a watershed happening within our culture and I promise you - I promise you that I will work harder to help you become the kind of people that can succeed in this world. It will be harder than it was for me - and it was harder for me than it was my parents and so on and so on.

I want your minds to be free, loving, and expansive to the point where you are curious and accepting - but also critical and independent. I know that's a tall order - and I certainly haven't achieved that... but I think you could. And... know this - you have each other. Like it or not you 3 will have each other forever and I want that to be your strongest bond - I hope for that. I hope you will help and love each other.

Anyway - I love you very much. I'm very sorry that world is behaving this way. It may never get this good again - and it's time I took my job as your father more seriously.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Happy Birthday to my Baby Boy
Have you ever met someone so sweet and loving that you just wanted to put them in your pocket and carry them around for your whole life? Well... Wells - that seems to be you my son.

You have a natural capacity for positive curiosity. You love to want to tate and try new things - you love to be around people and you are quick to forgive and hug and say I love you. You have a natural tendency to want to share and say please and thank you.

Your disposition is beautiful.

You're also tough, smart, and you love to compete. You are quick to cry a little bit sometimes but that's ok - you are learning to get over it faster and faster day by day.

Today is your birthday. In the last year you've learned how to hit baseballs, go sled riding, pee in a potty, swim a little bit, put your dishes in the sink, sit at the table, eat all your dinner, sleep in a big boy bed, and just be a wonderful.

I couldn't love you any more if I tried. I hope we are friends for the longest of times and make all sorts of memories together.


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Little Proud Moments

Dear Ella.

The other day you, Wells and I went to breakfast. You had French Toast with syrup and strawberries on the side. This is now your "go to" breakfast. Wells had Strawberry pancakes and syrup with strawberries on the side.

I usually get some kind of egg and bacon.

I also get you guys your own plate of bacon. You aren't allowed to eat it until you finish the strawberries. And you both seem to love bacon. There were 5 pieces. You both started to eat them and you devoured your 2 pieces while Wells was still working on his 2nd. You left the last piece on the plate and went back to your French Toast.

As Wells finished his 2nd piece I saw you immediately take note and swoop to grab the 3rd piece. And then - you thought for a second - you did the math... you said "Well I don't think Wells has had this much" and you broke it in hald and gave him hald. Wells - the most gentile of us all said "Thank you Ella." And you nodded.

It may seem like a small thing - but one day if you have children you'll know that the autonomous consideration you showed there was very nice.

Have a great day -

Love Dad -

P.s. - we leave on our trip tomorrow - #gird

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Movies, Playlists, and our trip - oh and the growth of Piper
Hey guys

I watched a movie recently about war and I thought to myself that I had yet to do anything truly great. In my life personal accomplishments aren't what I thought they would be - and I'm kind of ok with that because as you get older you aren't as idealistic as you used to be... you're more scared, a bit more weak and patient at the same time. My advice - when you feel like a lion... go be a lion - here are the things in my life that are likely my biggest accomplishments... in no particular order.

1. Being an all-state baseball player
2. Winning a national championship as part of the General Die Baseball team in 1995
3. Playing college baseball
4. Having 3 healthy beautiful children
5. Being able to buy nice stuff
6. Make a million dollars in one year
7. Acquire lots of "friends"
8. Travel to Korea and Thailand
9. Eat in the finest restaurants and stay at the finest hotels in America
10. Travel extensively across America
11. Be married

Anyway - that ain't much. And the further you get from death the more it goes down - I hope to at least do one or two more things in my life... maybe you'll help me figure it out.

In a few weeks Me, Ella, and Wells are going to take our summer road trip for a couple days. We are going to visit Annapolis, Possibly Mt Vernon Virginia, Nags Head, and see our Aunt Aggie in North Carolina.

PIPER UPDATE - the littlest one is still very little. But she is the only baby that has ever wanted to snuggle with me. When I pick her she looks to snuggle into my neck. She seems very funny - and she's also very quiet and a good sleeper. We appreciate that. Her hair is brown - she smells a little - but I think she's a keeper.

Til next time - love Dad

Favorites List
Pandora Song List
Amazon Wish List
Revolutionary Wealth - Tofflers
Brian Jones

Things Making Me Smile
The City
Listening - [out of 5]
Benjy Ferree - 4.8
The Thermals 3.1
David Gray 3.8

Like the guy with the beard? YES - like the guy with the beers. What? Yep

Bands That I Check Schedules For
Badly Drawn Boy
Belle and Sebastian
Benjy Ferree
The Black Keys
Drive By Truckers
The Eels
Kimya Dawson
Mark Hopkins Band
Iron and Wine
Mates of State
Ted Leo
Two if By Sea

Places I Rock in the Flesh
9:30 Club
Black Cat
Electric Factory
The Knitting Factory
The Otto Bar
Recher Theatre

Places I Eat/Drink in the Flesh
Bishop's Collar
Cross Street Market
Hull Street
Joun Gak
Mick O'Shea's
No Way Jose
The Irish Pub
The Waterfront Hotel

My Greatest Hits (that's so lame)

The time I almost killed a child
July 4th in Korea
Excerpts from Demian
Why I screen phone calls
Bret's Death Metal Report
A conversation at a cocktail party
A conversation at breakfast
So you think you are a Baltimorian
A conversation about a girl singer
Observations from a bar
Observations of strippers
Tech Language
Why I love Oasis
I would go to war
"You Son of a Bitch" An Open Letter to Tom Friend
Dance to Your Ocean
Dream Ranch
When men become pussies
Jason Whitlock is a racist propaganda promoter
Pitchfork takes music snobbery to new level
The Cosmic Clash of the Red Sox and Cubs
The Hatred that is Runts Candy
Starting corporate line-up
Google Bio
Do you know me? List 1 / List 2 / List 3
The Night I Burned Philly Down
So You Want to be a Booze Hound
She Said it was Free
Funniest Corporate Story Ever
Striped Shirts and the Fucks that Wear Them
Death Peddle
Pieces of Morning
Oasis Album Revew
The Art of Tipping
Starting Fires With Grass Stains
Bret's Federal Hill Food Review
Sexcapades and your Picture on the Internet
Stupid Secrets
Stupid Secrets the Return

Contact Me

Stuff I Swing By From Time to Time

Indie Video Archive
Large Hearted Boy
Important Records
Oasis News
Pitch Fork Media
Reptilian Records
Scenestars MP3 Blogs
Sound Garden Baltimore

Shotgun Apparel
Warrior Clothing

Angry Little Girls
Atom Films
Eye Envision
Homestar Runner
Kill Frog
Junior Varsity Meat Market

Baltimore City Paper
The Baltimore Sun
Calvert Hall
Degroen's Brewers
ESL Cafe
Fantasy Sports
Korean Herald
Villa Julie College Baseball
W3 Schools

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