Thanks to Our Resident Buccaneer

conversations with hank buccaneer


(the morning after Molly literally kicked Hank out of his bed in the middle of the night and claimed it as her own like a bite-sized buccaneer)

Me: (entering the kitchen for coffee, only one eye open)

Hank: (sitting up in the guest room/my office bed, sipping hot chocolate gazing out the window)

Me: Good morning, Hank.

Hank: Good morning, mama! Do you want to make your coffee and meet me in here?

Me: I do! (push the correct buttons, add coffee and go stand in the doorway of the guest room/my office which is off the kitchen) How did you sleep after being so abruptly evicted from your own bed last night?
Hank: Honestly, that was the funniest thing that has ever happened to me.

Me: You’re such a good sport when it comes to Molly. I know it isn’t always easy having a three year old sister.

Hank: I love her so much it is easier than you think.

Me: You are Molly’s best big brother. (pausing to collect my coffee and enter the guest room/my office to sit on the opposite end of the bed from Hank) But you were warm enough? You slept well?

Hank: Mom, last night was the best. I love this room so much and I woke up without an alarm with the rain on the windows and I watched that for a long time before I got up and made myself a hot chocolate and the best part was I didn’t have to be quiet, I was able to turn the light on and not worry about waking up Amália and I didn’t have to use the light from my phone to find my slippers. I know we were talking about moving me to this room after Uncle Jesse’s visit, but mom, I mean I will wait, but do I have to go back? Can I just sleep in here until Uncle Jesse comes and then after?

Me: (realizing my kids are ready to have separate spaces and so grateful for the privilege to give them their own spaces) Well, Molly made it clear last night that she was ready to take over your big bed! Your bed has been proper hijacked.

Hank: She was so funny! I couldn’t stop laughing!

Me: She literally kicked you out of your bed then fell asleep.

Hank: And she slept all night?

Me: YES! I assumed she would be scared to sleep alone since you two have always shared a room, but she was fine. Not a peep!

Hank: Molly is brave, mom, she’s not like me.

Me: You’re also brave, Hank, no two people are alike and you will be brave for Molly in ways she isn’t able to be brave for you!

Hank: Are you okay with giving up your office? You can still use the desk when I am at school!

Me: Don’t you worry about me, pal. I can work anywhere.

Hank: I love this room. It is so cozy and special and I have been watching the pombos (pigeons) flying around and the swans over at the Casa (estate) across the street and everyone going into the hospital and to the bus stop; it’s just so peaceful. I understand why you love this room so much.

Me: (smiling and nodding)

Hank: This room just feels good.

Me: I’ve written two novels and countless children’s books in this room. I’ve written every single conversation for my blog, a clutch of travel articles, illustrated Billy Blankenstooth and made hundreds of drawings, day dreamed, emailed… I have worked here every day for the past six years and loved every minute.

Hank: No wonder I love it so much.



Photo by: Molly

Photo by: Molly


(10am on a Saturday morning)

Me: (my day having started 4 hours before) MaGoo?

Molly: (in her room with the blankets pulled over her head)

Me: Ms. Molly MaGoo, do you plan on spending the whole day in bed?

Molly: Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!

Me: (sitting on the floor next to her bed saying nothing)

Molly: Mama, go away. I sweeping.

Me: You’re sweeping?

Molly: Yes, I sweeping.

Me: You’re sweeping the floor? Must be sweeping in your dreams because you’re not sweeping this floor and your papa, mano (brother) and I would love help with the housework.

Molly: (dramatically tosses the covers off, full sass and disappointment)

Me: (still in love with my pun) Are you sweeping or are you sleeping?

Molly: (scrunches her face up like something smells bad) Mama, no. (tosses covers back over her head)

Pai: (from the hallway) You’re definitely Grandpa Snitche’s daughter. That was a Bern joke. That was painful.

Me: What?!

Hank: (from the hallway) I agree, mom. Too early, even for me!

Molly: Mama, I love you, go away. (sticking her hand out the blankets, waving) Bye-bye.

Pai: Now, that was funny. That is comedy.

Me: (joining them in the hallway) The student has surpassed the master!

Hank: But is she really your student? I mean, Amália is a different kind of funny. Different than you, I mean, you’re funny, but she’s like way funny, you know?


Molly: Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! I sweeping in here!

(all three of us riot with laughter)

Molly: Awe, come on guys!


Bad Guys Are Just Superheroes With Broken Hearts (A Conversation with Molly)

Because one tutu just wasn't enough to watch Power Rangers.

Because one tutu just wasn’t enough to watch Power Rangers.


Me: (cracking the door to her bedroom) Good morning, Ms. MaGoo. Are you awake?

Molly: Yah.

Me: May I turn on the light?

Molly: No, my eyes not ready.

Me: Okay, may I come in?

Molly: Yah.

Me: Good morning (sitting on the floor beside her bed).

Molly: Good morning, mama.

Me: How was your sleeping?

Molly: Good.

Me: How was your dreaming?

Molly: Good.

Me: What did you dream about?

Molly: I dream about fire. Fire in the garage and, um, bombeiros (firefighters) came and put fire out with water.

Me: That’s what bombeiros (firefighters) do. Bombeiros (firefighters) are heroes. They are real life superheroes just like your Tio (Uncle) Daniel. He is a bombeiro (firefighter) and he is a hero; he and his colleagues save people.

Molly: And cats.

Me: And guinea pigs.

Molly: Guinny pigs?

Me: The fire station where your Tio (Uncle) works in Setúbal is a guinea pig sanctuary.

Molly: Really?

Me:Yes, when a guinea pig needs a home they go and live at the fire station.

Molly: The bombeiros (firefighters) are superheroes! They save guinea pigs!!!! (nodding)

Me: Yes.

Molly: I love superheroes.

Me: I know.

Molly: I like bad guys, too.

Me: You know, a bad guy is just a superhero with a broken heart.

Molly: Awe. Bad guys with broken hearts superheroes?

Me: True story.

Molly: Like Joker and Batman.

Me: Exactly like Joker and Batman.

Molly: (processing)




Molly: Mama, I a Power Ranger.

Me: And I am proud!

Molly: I then porpull Power Ranger, NO, I the greeeeeeen Power Ranger.

Me: Impressive, do you want me to sign you up for Karate? That is how you learn to be a Power Ranger.

Molly: No, uma bruxia (a witch) make Power Ranger!

Me: Ah, but that is only for television Power Rangers. Real life Power Rangers have to train and practice to become Power Rangers and that practice is called martial arts. Just like bombeiros (firefighters) have to train to be superheroes so do Power Rangers… Unless you’re on TV.

Molly: I no on TV.

Me: Nope.

Molly: I no need a bruxia (witch).

Me: Nope, you have all the power you need to be a superhero.

Molly: (getting out of bed) But I no bad guy, mama. My heart not broken.

Me: (smiling, watching her toddle off toward her day)