Friday, June 28, 2013

Link Day

I don't often just link to somebody else's blog but today I'd like to direct you elsewhere for a blog post: Congratulations, You Just Broke Your Child

I don't often get personal here. I joke and I laugh and I take pictures of the cutest baby in the world. This article, however, deserves to be shared and it hit home pretty hard. It's one of the things I said when I realized I was going to be a dad: "I'll never be like that." And I'm not. I hope to continue not being that kind of dad.

I want my daughter to always feel safe with me and know that I'm here for her. I know she's only 11 months old (almost) but I hope that she knows when she's 11 months, 11 years, or 11 decades* that I'm here for her. As long as I'm alive, I'm here for her. I can't always promise I'll be awesome or know how to fix things but I'll be here.

Now pardon me. I have to stop my daughter from chewing on this wooden table with her 4 teeth.

*The Singularity is coming. It could happen!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Picture Post!

Just a few recent photos of my adorable little daughter:

 Yes, this one. This adorable little girl with the blue eyes and big smile.
 "Look daddy! A box! The BEST TOY EVER!"

I'm considering just buying her boxes of all sizes for her birthday in a month.

Holy crap.

Her birthday is only about a month away.

 We put up a barrier to keep her in the area of the living room that's mostly safe for her.

Here is a picture of her climbing over said barrier.

But seriously, a month. What the heck am I supposed to get her for her first birthday?

A pony?
 You can't tell, looking at this picture, but that's the Disney movie "Tangled." She was completely enraptured by the movie and barely looked away throughout the whole thing.

She has great taste in movies.

Maybe I should get her more Disney movies?
 The only thing that made her stop watching the movie was when I turned on the flash and that little orange light came on. She saw the light and turned, immediately smiling, knowing the camera was on.

Maybe she wants a camera for her first birthday. That seems perfectly reasonable at the moment.
 She's become a real expert at pulling herself up using just the smallest amount of leverage from helpers like the table, chair, or daddy's leg hair.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Feeding Time!

Every day, Lois decides to do something new and amazing.

Yesterday it was standing without my assistance to the (fast but we'll say slow) count of "five" before falling on her butt. The day before that it was learning how to open the little flip-pages on the inside of one of her flip books. Tomorrow it will probably be how to open the door and walk around outside because it terrifies daddy to think of that.


Today she learned that going "pthbtbtbtbtb" with food in her mouth is a FUN GAME and it makes daddy LAUGH REALLY HARD.

If you're going to be a new father, let me pass this on to you right now: learn now how not to laugh, no matter how hard you want to. If you laugh once at something, something like your child blowing her food in a fine mist across her baby highchair and all over your face, this will now become your child's favorite thing ever because all they want is to make you laugh.

We also learned a fun new game today called "dance-side-to-side, mouth wide open, while eating." She would do this and then look upset if I didn't attempt to feed her. I was never very good at sports in high school and I feel as though the opportunity to learn how to do feats of dexterity like this has passed me by. Has anybody else ever accidentally stuffed their child's nose full of apple sauce/banana mixed together? It does not clean easily. You try telling a baby to blow her nose and not breath in the mush daddy stuffed up her nostrils.

My child is obviously going places in this world. Like I said, she learns something new every single day.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Father's Day

So I'm a few days late to talk about Father's Day but I'm going to do it anyways.

This wasn't my first Father's Day and I'm guessing it wasn't yours, either. It was, however, my first Father's Day as a father so that was a new and exciting development. We celebrated fairly quietly as a family and I received an awesome present from Laura:

Did I mention that I'm a bit of a geek? Now you know. Also: RUN!

And I received this great card from my daughter:

She has great taste.
Good handwriting for a 10 month old!

As an aside, the card was actually from our friend, Tommy, who is absolutely awesome and made me smile. Thank you, Tommy! (Go check him out and vote for him so he can have an awesome new vlog with Geek & Sundry:

But it wasn't Father's Day that made me feel like a successful dad. It wasn't a bunch of people calling me up and wishing me a happy day or texting me, or Facebooking me to tell me how awesome they think I am. It wasn't getting the card or the geekiest Monopoly game in existence.

It was what happened yesterday.

My baby girl was playing in the living room, getting into trouble and finding the things that she could choke on or wrap around her neck if I looked away for more than 3.65 seconds and she pulled herself standing up to the coffee table.

She then looked at me, raised one hand and waved it backwards, as babies will do when they are just learning how to wave.

She smiled, opened her mouth, and very clearly said "Hi dada!"

I smiled, waved back at her, and with tears in my smiling eyes (there was a ninja nearby cutting onions, OR a Dr. Who episode was playing and it was one about Rose) said "Hi, my baby girl!"

Delighted at interacting with daddy she immediately fell straight backwards, smashing her entire body into the floor, her head being caught by a pillow that we'll pretend I carefully placed just in case this happened but that in reality the baby had dragged there to play with.

But that moment? The one where she not only acknowledged that I exist but also took the effort to have a however-brief conversation with me, using every neuron in her still-tiny brain because she wanted to say hi to her dad?

Well, let's just say those damn ninjas are cutting onions again as I think about it and leave it at that, okay? That one moment was better than spending a year with the Doctor on the TARDIS.

...don't ever quote me on that, and if the Doctor is reading this, I will still gladly spend a year traveling time and space with you.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Why There Are DVDs On My Floor

I baby-proofed the living room. Mostly.

  • I taped up the old chair that had stuffing coming out of it so that the baby didn't pull the stuffing out and shove it down her throat to choke on.
  • I used a tall box that perfectly fit in the opening that holds the wires from the electronics AND the books on the bookshelves that she liked to drop on her own head while she rolled around in the wires.
  • I used a large old pillow to cleverly conceal the 9-outlet electrical strip that she really wanted to explore with her tongue.
  • The floor in the baby-approved area has been cleaned of all coins that could go in her mouth; that's money we just can't afford to lose! If we're not careful, our little thief will use her ingenious way of hiding it until later by eating it now and smuggling it out.
  • The exit from the living room to the area where the floor has not been meticulously checked for pennies, dimes, quarters, and other foreign objects that could go in her mouth has been blocked with large boxes and other baby-stoppers.
Rather than being well-planned and thought-out, this baby-proofing has been done in direct reaction to what the baby has done every day. By tomorrow I will probably have had to come up with some other new way of protecting the baby from killing herself*.

But there are some things that I haven't done much about. For example, the movie/video game storage under the TV. Oh, I've put her toy box in front of the TV area to brunt most of the damage she could do but she just uses that to climb up and start playing with the DVR/Roku box/DVDs because she sees the barrier and immediately wants to know what's on the other side that she can play with, regardless of the fact that the things creating the barrier are HER TOYS.

So she gets a DVD, chews on it a bit, then throws it on the floor. Maybe she reprograms our DVR so that instead of recording the newest Next Food Network Star or Doctor Who it's recording reruns of Sex In The City. Maybe she presses enough buttons on our Roku box that she buys every season of Chuck from Amazon Prime**.

But so what? She's a kid, exploring the world. None of these things will hurt her and she'll get to know the world around her a bit more.

Yes, the house will be a bit messier than we'd like because I let her throw the DVDs around but later, when she's a little older she can learn to also help pick them up***. Her smile when she gets a DVD down that she's been stretching for for five minutes is worth a few soggy cardboard corners on the DVD covers and half a minute's worth of cleaning up when she's taking a nap.

If it probably won't hurt her and it makes her happy, I try to let her do it, and I see nothing wrong with that.

*She seems to TRY, I swear!
**I would thank her for that last one, probably, after boggling at the bill.
***Experienced parents, stop laughing.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Success Can Be Measured In Failure

To fathers newer than me or fathers soon-to-be, I have a little bit of advice that you're probably not going to like. You might even doubt it but trust me, I'm speaking as the voice of experience and you might benefit from this.

I'm supposed to wear it, right daddy?
You think you have the routine down, or you're pretty sure that you've figured out how to work this whole "feeding" thing, right? Maybe you've even found exactly how to put your baby to sleep at night so that he or she goes right to sleep without even a peep!


Tomorrow you'll find out just how wrong you are.

Oh, maybe not. Maybe your baby will continue to sleep perfectly when you sing them just the right song or feed them exactly 1 hour and 6 minutes before they sleep. Maybe the way you feed them without making any mess at all will continue to work.

But probably not.

Success today in any one thing does not mean success tomorrow. Babies are, apparently, still figuring out that they're human beings. Logic has no place in their mind.

I was celebrating having figured out how to keep Lois from making any kind of mess while spoon feeding her for the last week. I was doing great and things were going perfectly! I had this down, no problem, and feeding time would be perfectly easy from here on out.

Oh, what a naive fool I was back in those old days of yesterday.

I'm adorable. What else needs be said?
Outside of feeding let's say you believe you've baby-proofed your house. (HAH!) Well, let me tell you that your baby will find the things that aren't baby-proofed. Not only will she or he find them, she will want to stick them in her mouth.

So you'll just fix that and it'll be done, right?


Right up until they find the next thing that shouldn't be there and puts THAT in their mouth.

Now please pardon me. I was trying to think of a way to finish this but now I have to go stop my baby from reprogramming the DVR. She somehow pulled herself up so that she's level with it and is pushing all of the buttons.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Things I Can't Say/Do While Mommy Is Here

Sometimes I say or do things that get me "The Look." You know the one - the one that promises a slow and painful death while also somehow saying "Dear Lord, what have I done to deserve you in my life? How bad was my karma in my last life?"

Some things I am learning I cannot do or say while mommy is around:

  • No throwing toys at the baby from across the room, no matter how soft, to get the baby's attention, especially if I then follow it up with saying "Wow, you're still really bad at catching" when it inevitably bounces off her head.
  • "Jeeze Lois, stop being such a baby!" is right out.
  • During a vocal interplay with the baby while she is babbling and I'm replying I should not at any time say "Oh yeah?!" and then proceed to make a "Yo Mamma" joke.
  • No asking the baby if she wants to meet the fishies "up close and personal."
  • I am not allowed to do any of the following things from this video:

Thursday, June 6, 2013

We Survived!

The Great Plague of 2013 has passed from this household, leaving only a slight case of sniffles in its wake and I am happy to say that we have all survived its malicious and cruel grasp. It was a close call but we are all strong (like bear) and made it through the other side.

Day One.
So now it's 10 months and 3 days after Day One (shown to the left, here), and we've made it through the baby having two colds, daddy having two surgeries, and mommy leaving the baby alone with daddy for a week. We've made it through snow storms and hot weather, travel to exotic locations and flying over 20,000 feet up in the air.

We've made it ten months, and I wasn't even sure I'd make it ten minutes as a dad.

She's an amazing kid and astounds me every day with new developments.

We're in for a whole heap of trouble.
Speaking of new developments, this picture to the right, here, shows the little one after she pulled herself up on top of the box from a crawling position.

We have full-on crawling now, with the ability to pull herself into a standing position. When she gets something like this box she uses it to scoot around as though it's the weirdest-shaped walker in existence.

It's awesome but it's also terrifying. I keep telling her "Good job! Now knock it off!" She can't be mobile yet! It's too early!

This also means that we've lowered her bed from only being halfway down (so that it's easier to pick her up) to being all the way down. With her being able to stand up, I know we're just a short time away from finding her trying to climb out of her crib! She already tries to climb the couch, the boxes, the chair, daddy, and the cats!

Things here are going well. We're going to have a friend over for a few days and hopefully we'll all get to go on some baby-fun adventure times! In the meantime, I'm going to be working furiously to baby-proof the house.

Bubble wrap should do the trick, right?

Did you think I was asleep?

Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Plague

As many of you know, I was alone with the baby for a week, recently. Mommy came back from her trip to Florida and we were both VERY happy to see her! I believe that my dear little baby's first sentence in her life was "Mommy, why did you leave me home alone with that weirdo?"

Unfortunately, mommy brought back a friend with her and that friend's name is Plague.

Mommy is just starting to get over the Plague while the baby and I are beginning our delve into it. Poor little girl is so miserable and doesn't know why; it absolutely breaks our hearts. I feel so bad that she feels bad and in the mean time I'm feeling bad too.


This message has been brought to you by the letter bubonic and the number H1N1.

Poor baby. It's the Plague.