Saturday, November 30, 2013

Father Failed

Socks? Those are an appetizer.
I made this blog thinking about all the times I was sure to screw up, all the mistakes I'd be sure to make. I've made quite a few, believe me, and I've shared more than one or two here and there.

And then yesterday I had to share something on Facebook before I shared it here because I needed to be comforted by other parents.

I needed comforting mostly because I was sure that I had just allowed my daughter to sneak herself into the bathroom, look around for a bit, and then sneak back out.
"I was brushing my teeth!"
She snuck back out into the living room, happily munching on the brush end of our toilet brush.

I had cleaned the toilet just the day before; I know what has been on that brush. To say I was grossed out would be understating it a bit.

I fought back the rising bile, quietly took the brush and put it back into the bathroom, which I made sure was closed behind me when I left it.

I washed out her mouth as best I could. No bleach or anything of course, but the thought occurred to me.
Taking her bow.
I shared this on Facebook, pleading with people there to make me feel like a better parent.

They succeeded.

Oh, how they succeeded.

It made me think about why I have this blog and here's the conclusion I came to:

I have this blog because I like sharing my experiences with the world. I also have it because I want new parents to see somewhere in black and white how badly other parents screw up.

I want them all to know: We all screw up. We screw up big and we screw up bad. We all do. Not a one of us parents without screwing up in a relatively big way now and then.

Other parents let me spell that out again:

You will screw up.

I will screw up again.

We all do it and we'll do it again and again and again.

So shall it be because so it is.

Take this as a comforting truth.

And then, when you screw up, tell me the story so that I can assure you I've done worse. You tell me your stories, I'll tell you mine.

"Wait. That brush was WHERE before I chewed on it?!"

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


FEET!    (This picture has nothing to do with anything.)

In case you were looking to spoil our child this Christmas and were wondering if we made a wish list for Lois:

Monday, November 25, 2013

Wee Little Sick One

The poor little girl is sick. At every sneeze he has snot coming out of her nose roughly the size of her entire face.

It's not a pretty sight, let me tell you.

She cried most of last night; waking when she couldn't breathe properly, crying for an hour or so until she found a position in which she could sleep, only to wake in another hour or so when the snot became too much to bare once again.

Her mother and I? Also sick.

The next picture is AFTER the sneeze. You're welcome.
Our household is not the happiest and healthiest of places today. Nobody slept well, nobody can breathe properly, and nobody knows how to make a sick baby happy since there are no medicines for someone her weight and nothing to be done.

The poor girl.

There's an interesting dichotomy that happens with the sick baby at night though:

"I'm not sic. I ken breeb jus fine, dabby."

Thought One: "She's crying. I should go soothe her so that she can go to sleep."

Thought Two: "She has stopped crying. What if it's because she can't breathe anymore?!"

If you give in to the fear from thought two you need to fully expect to wake the baby up and be thinking thought one all over again.

Ah, the vicious cycle starts again, as she just woke from her nap.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

See If You Can Spot The Moment

Somewhere between here...
 We went to Romp n' Roll today and Lois and I were the only ones there. She had free run of the place and I was glad for the opportunity to take my camera out and get a few pictures!*

Now personally I don't know how many times I could keep coming back to the same place with the same things, over and over again, playing with them with the enthusiasm of, well, of a one-year-old with new toys, but she loves it. We even went twice today!

...and here.
 At some point though, during this second trip, I may have done something that made me feel a bit like a bad dad. Take a moment, look at the pictures, and you tell me what it was I did.

Did you look?

Yeah. I may have been so busy snapping photos that I wasn't there to catch my daughter when she slipped and rolled down the blue tumbling wedge.

See, well, the thing is, um, oops? I swear I'm a good dad.

Okay, well, maybe I should have put down the camera, stepped up, and helped her down the wedge.
She was yelling "Whee!" at this point.

Granted, part of the issue was that instead of crawling down it like she normally does, or pushing herself down it backwards, she decided that she was going to just run flat-out as though it was flat land.

It didn't work very well.

Now obviously she's fine. No tears, and not even the quiver of a lip. She got back up and was running around the gym in seconds.

"Oooh, I'm telling mommy!"

I still shouldn't have laughed when it all happened, no matter how funny the flailing arms and flying feet were, which may have been my actual failure.

*I tend to avoid pulling out my camera when other children are there. It just gives off the wrong vibe and I've gotten some odd looks.

Caution: Adorableness Ahead

"I'm trying to watch TV, daddy."

"Cheesy eggs are good for my hair, daddy."

Sleepy time with daddy.

"I'm NOT TIRED, daddy!"

"Okay, I smiled pretty, now get me out of the baby prison, daddy!"

Saturday, November 16, 2013

I Swear That I Really Am A Good Dad

Let's ignore that she was crying and my reaction was to grab the camera.
Why is my daughter falling backward onto her butt, wrapped in a jacket, tears in her eyes?

Well, she couldn't remove her coat.

Her mommy said "Come here, honey, and I'll help you get that off."

Her daddy said "Come on, little girl. I'll help you take it off, just come over to me."

She cried more and kept waving her arm around ineffectually.

Of course I grabbed my camera, thinking of the fame of "Reasons My Son Is Crying." I snapped two pictures and on the third she threw herself backwards just as the flash was going off.

I swear, I'm a good dad. I swear I am.

I mean, it's hours and hours later and she's not still wearing the coat. Or crying. That has to count for something?

EDIT: Laura read this and summed it up, laughing. "I swear I'm a good dad; here's a picture of my crying daughter falling on her ass!"

Thursday, November 14, 2013

A Must Read

I highly suggesting going here and reading a strip that made me cry happy tears because of how true it is. Don't come back until you've done that.

I started out laughing at the fact that parenthood changes the parent's sense of time because it's true. My day is not full of hours, it is full of "times." Nap, breakfast, lunch, dinner, Romp 'n Roll, play, story, snack, learning, bed. All a bunch of "times" that sometimes happen "on time" and sometimes not so much.

And the strip just gets better from there, even more true. Who would have thought that I would put "lettuce" into the "dangerous food" category? Or that some members of the household would have to mend their habits so that the toilet cover is never up, where a little someone might try to play with (or crawl into) the water?

I don't think there's a single thing I disagree with that he says in the comic.

If you didn't read it already like I told you to before you read this, first off you follow directions badly, but secondly GO READ THE COMIC.

Thank you.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Not Yet!

I decided to check on the little one when I heard her crying at the end of a too-short nap. I turned the corner into her room and there she was:

One leg dangling out of her crib, her arms levering her to go all the way over.

Now allow me to cry out the lament of all parents everywhere:

"She's too little!"

"It's too early!"


Monday, November 11, 2013

Lazy Baby!

She doesn't comb her own hair.
The other morning I made Lois a cheese omelette for breakfast. I cut it into small pieces, put her highchair in the doorway to the kitchen where I could see her/she could see me, and I went about my business of cleaning up the kitchen.

When I next turned to see how she was doing I noticed that she had heard eggs were good for her hair and had decided to smear some in hers.

She added the cheese for good measure.

*A fight I won on principle since she still has the socks ON.
After a midday bath and an argument on how to properly wear socks*, she lazed about a bit more, doing absolutely nothing to clean up the mess she had made on her high chair when she flipped her plate and smashed her cheese into the table.

That's okay though; she continued her job of being absolutely adorable. I have to admit that she's quite good at that job. It's almost like it comes naturally to her.

What? I'm comfortable, daddy.

Laura and I left later on, leaving the little one with grandma and grandpa who agreed to watch her for us overnight while we enjoyed a rare night out to ourselves. We were very grateful, especially when we were actually able to sleep all night, even sleeping in past 7 AM.

Grandma, grandpa, and Lois unfortunately, were not quite as lucky. Unfortunately Lois didn't go to sleep on time for grandma and grandpa, then woke up in the middle of the night for an hour or so and then even woke up earlier than normal.

Here she is, insisting she is not tired at all.
The poor girl was exhausted the next day from keeping grandma and grandpa awake all night!

It's amazing how off-kilter a day can be for a toddler who is off their sleep. I think that the next day was the grumpiest I have ever seen the little one and that's even including the days that she got shots at the doctor's office.

She's back into her schedule though; one night wasn't too bad and she went right back to her usual nap time today, as well as her usual bed time last night. 
Her and Rompy enjoying some quality TV.
She even let us sleep in a little bit as she caught up on the lack of sleep.

She's so cute though, even when she's in a bad mood. As she starts to throw a bit of a fit I begin singing the Alphabet Song and she immediately stops wailing, turning to watch me do the ASL signs for each letter, then dancing slightly side-to-side when I get to the ever-favorite "L, M, N, O, P."

Forgetting why she was upset she goes out and finds a new reason to get upset, then the process repeats itself but this time with "Old MacDonald" and her trying to sing the "E-I-E-I-O," which sounds vaguely like a hooting monkey, in the most adorable way possible.

Lois really is a good kid. I mean, my attempts to teach her to load the dishwasher properly have amounted to nothing so far, and her inability to operate the vacuum cleaner can be a bit frustrating but she does "cute" very well. I think it's a fair trade at this point. Later, though?

Later she'll have to learn how to dust. Because I hate dusting. That's why you have kids, right? To do the chores you hate?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

If At First You Don't Succeed, You'll Have a Mess to Clean

"No, I will not 'smile for the camera,' daddy. That trick is so last month."
We've decided to jump into the next step when it comes to feeding the little one and are trying to have her feed herself!

Are we early for that? Late? Should we hand feed her for the rest of her life and never teach her how to use utensils?

I have no idea except that I'm pretty sure that last one is not an option. Pretty sure.

So far we've taught her that once food is on the spoon or fork she can help us guide it into her mouth. She will sometimes try to guide it into her hair or lap but mostly she's gotten this whole "food goes into the mouth" thing.

What we haven't been able to teach her (yet) is that if we hand her the spoon and put the suction-cupped bowl on her tray, she should eat the food from the bowl using the spoon. I am fairly certain that at this point she believes that handing her the spoon with the food means that she should fling the food at the cat, via some catapult-like spoon maneuvers, then put the spoon down and eat the remaining food with her fingers.

The cats are unsure whether to be happy or upset. It often seems to depend on what we're trying to feed Lois. Bacon or ham products are a happy occurrence, whereas oatmeal seems to be a bit of a downer.

Actually, as the one who cleans it up? I agree with the cats.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

When The Baby Sleeps

Today was a normal day at the beginning. Begrudgingly getting up. Some coffee for Laura, some breakfast for Lois, and me sitting in the chair going "Blergh."

Eventually Laura went to work. Lois lay down for a nap. And I came to life.

It started out pretty normal. I wanted to take a picture for my Green Mountain Coffee BzzCampaign and I thought that a picture of me balancing a hot cup of coffee on my head while juggling would suffice. As you do.

I thought the photo was kind of funny so after sending it off through the series of tubes that is the internet I posted it up on Facebook, labeling it "What I do when Laura is at work and Lois is asleep.*"

Laura wrote back "Well done. Now balance a second cup on the first one and do it again."

Because that's difficult?

Not content with me showing off my awesomeness, instead of praising me she responded "Now do it on one foot."

Thank you very much.

Now if you'll just pardon me, the sound of coffee cups crashing to the floor seems to have woken the baby.

*Let's pretend this label is less accurate than it actually is, okay?

Monday, November 4, 2013

I Have Some Great Friends

Click to make bigger and read. I have great friends.
As you may or may not know, I have officially adopted my little girl and have legal papers that name me daddy.

This doesn't change anything at all except from a legal standpoint, which is a huge change all at the same time.

We had a party over the weekend with some of our closest friends to celebrate and I was surprised to see that they had shown up with presents.

Lois notices the important thing in the room; the camera.
They all laughed at me when I said that I was disappointed most of the presents were for Lois. I forgot the most important thing of being a parent: even if it's MY party, everyone's actually here for the baby.

I forgot that I am no longer a singular entity, I am a dad. It is always all about her.

And that's pretty great, really. She deserves the world.

Plus, my friends don't know my size at ALL.

Suddenly I Feel A Bit Better

It's not often that I just link to something written by someone else but today I'm going to do just that. Take a moment and feel better, my friends and inexperienced parents.