Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Are we ready? Hmmm, let’s see…….
1) Put up Christmas Tree – Check!
2) Decorate Tree – Score!
3) Buy outdoor lights – Done!
4) String outdoor lights – Easy Peasy!
5) Hang stockings and Jingle Bells – With care.
6) Pound in nail ‘next to’ new front door for wreath – With one or two swings of my mighty wrist (and a few from Lukas)
7) Christmas music – Got my 5 disc changer loaded with everything from The Nutcracker Suite to The Rev. Horton Heat (We Three Kings)
8) Gifts for Lukas – Yes, after scouring the city. (Red toothbrush for the win!)
9) Gifts for Mrs. LIAYF – Mostly. Getting stocking stuffers this afternoon.
10) Christmas Card mailing list finalized – Did a hatchet job last night on last year’s list. Tip: If you have to ask ‘Who is this?’ It’s time for them to ‘go’.
11) Christmas Newsletter created – Mrs. LIAYF working on it as I type this.
12) Christmas Cards sent – See above. So they get them ‘after Christmas’. It’s the thought that counts, right?
13) Christmas Box mailed to out of State nieces and nephews – Er, once again left in the foyer. I’m a Bad Uncle.
14) Gifts Wrapped for Lukas – No. Honey? Sweets? What, you didn’t think I was actually going to do this myself, did you?
15) Gifts wrapped for Mrs. LIAYF –Not yet. Wondering if I can get away with wrapping these in tin foil, like the anniversary gifts.
So, I guess the answer to the question is…..No, we are not exactly ready for Christmas.
In fact, with being sick for the past month, as well as the final preparations leading up to the opening of Mrs. LIAYF’s new business venture, I've been finding it a bit difficult to get into the holiday spirit.
That was, until this morning. As I was getting ready for work I heard, over the monitor, Lukas wake up happy then promptly break into a toddler rendition of Jingle Bells. Yeah, now I'm in the spirit.
Merry Christmas to all!
Monday, December 21, 2009
Who could resist such a heartfelt request? Not me, that's for sure.
What was on the agenda for tonight? Hide and Seek. One of my favorites.
Now, I wasn't feeling particularly well tonight. I had gone to work despite having developed what I believe was a Strep-related infection in my nasal passages and I am now on some serious antibiotics. If you have ever had one of these you will know how painful they can be. (If this post hints of a Vicodin-induced writing style, now you know why).
Saturday, December 19, 2009
In fact, I'm sure that had I gotten the product for free, I would have (subconsciously, of course) probably even liked it that much more. Chew on that for a while publishers, flower shops....makers of cold weather wear.
But alas, when I hear other parent Bloggers complain of the constant barrage of offers that come in from companies looking to have their wares reviewed, and how difficult it is to chose the right ones to review and blog about, I sometimes respond "Hmph. Yeah I know what you mean!"
But the truth is, I have no idea what they mean. The LIAYF inbox, besides the endless Twitter follower notifications and the notices of blog comments, has been rather silent. Yes, I was excited a few weeks ago, when SAAB offered to send me one of their new 2010 models if I would review it here on 'Luke, I am Your Father'. Unfortunately, that was the last I heard from them.
(I will gladly test the local waters with your Yacht and give my honest take on the experience)
No matter. It is a new year in a couple of weeks. A new decade. A time for hopeful people all over the world to resolve to make their own change in their lives. With that in mind, I am officially declaring myself a free agent as of January 1st, 2010. What does that mean? Well, I will tell you what that means.
Let's say you are a new house cleaning service in the Seattle area and want to offer free service for a year if I would do a review of your services on my blog. SEND ME YOUR OFFER. I will give it careful consideration. Similarly, if you are a computer manufacturer and want to hook me up with your latest notebook if I would only give a fair assessment here at LIAYF. I'm listening.
What's more, I'll give the same consideration to car companies, high end clothing designers, gaming companies, restaurants, yacht builders, coffee roasters, toy manufacturers, or makers of jet packs out there who are looking for an honest opinion of their goods presented humbly to a worldwide audience of informed readers. This is your golden opportunity.
The sky is the limit corporate marketing types. Bring on those offers. I'll be waiting by my inbox at
6:00 AM 10:00 AM on January the 1st.
Photo credit: Yachtfan
Thursday, December 17, 2009
I posted the above Tweet on my Twitter account yesterday. It was quickly retweeted (passed on) by a few other Twitter users. I'm not sure if it was because of my added humor at the end, or because people found it endearing that a 2 year old's request for Christmas was a simple red toothbrush, but the statement seemed to resonate with at least a few parents on that social networking site.
If you have been following me here or on Twitter for any length of time, you probably know that we are a family without television. We cancelled it before Lukas was born. It was a difficult decision, but then again it wasn't. We had waited a very long time for a child to enter our lives and we collectively decided that we wanted to give him as much undivided attention as we could.
I had serious doubts that we would be long without our television. After all, we had spent quite a bit of time watching our favorite shows before making the decision. However, it is nearly 3 years later and I don't see us turning it on anytime soon. It has been extremely rewarding to spend Saturday mornings reading my son books and having him help me make breakfast rather than ignore me as he watches his favorite cartoons. It's not that there are not a lot of quality shows out there for kids, it's just us wanting to spend that extra time interacting with him.
One of the results of this is that, other than Elmo, he has little concept of the characters which adorn kids television shows. Yesterday, he received an invitation on a Dora card, and had no concept of who she was. Neither does he know of Thomas the Train, 'Cars' characters, or Sponge Bob. Don't get me wrong, he has lots of toys. Enough so, that he doesn't want for anything to captivate his attention without having television in his life.
So, when asked what he wanted for Christmas his answer was the toothbrush, since it is his favorite color and the dentist mistakenly inserted a PINK one in his go home bag. This needed rectified.
I hope that no one reading this interprets it as me passing judgment on their parenting. I am absolutely not. I know that everyone has their own parenting style and legitimate reasons for making the decision they have about the amount of television they allow their kids to watch. Our time will come to turn it back on. This is just not it.
For the record, Lukas is an extremely happy, outgoing boy, with terrific social skills. We spend a large amount of our time together laughing and being goofy. I know this will not last forever, so I am going to enjoy it as much as I can while he still thinks the world of me rather than considers me lame and corny, which I know will come.
Now excuse me while I run out on a desperate search for the last red toddler sized toothbrush in Seattle. Wish me luck.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Friday, December 11, 2009
That being said, after some suspicious daddy blogging activity was recently reported, I was hauled in for questioning today by Matt over at DC Urban Dad.
So, click on over and witness me answering more questions than a Magic 8 Ball. Well, that is if you only ask the Magic 8 Ball 5 questions, and one of the answers you get is "Ask again later".
And, if you haven't yet subscribed to DC Urban Dad's feed, you definitely need to get on that. He writes an extremely entertaining and humorous blog about being a dad. And so much more.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
At this rate, I should be light enough for liftoff fairly soon. I just need to find a high enough cliff.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
In my alley all this while
Hired some dude to take you away,
Broke his axle - made you stay
This was after I had paid!
Said he’d come back real soon
Called him, called him- same old tune
Neighbors rant and neighbors pace
Neighbors get into my face
Don’t really have the stomach for this
Guess it means more cash I’ll miss.
Nothings easy, never is
In this whole ‘home owning’ biz
Puts me in a real foul mood
Trying, trying, not to be rude.
Fatherhood really saves the day
Big hug from Lukas- it goes away!
Monday, November 30, 2009
This will also mean that Lukas will be able to a part of this program and therefore get to spend more time with his lovely mother. And, as a result, today was also Lukas' last day at his daycare center. It has been a good spot for him over the past two years, and he has made friends of many of the playmates who are also in his toddler room - he has in fact grown up with several of them. This does make me a bit melancholy about the whole transition as he certainly doesn't grasp the meaning of what has transpired. As far as he knows, he will see his friends again sometime soon. And that weighs more than a bit on my heart.
I will also miss the times we spend together driving to and from his daycare. Though just an hour a day, it was an hour of father/son bonding time. Time where we could discuss the world around us. I enjoyed this time immensely.
However, I don't want to let these melancholy thoughts pervade the happier ones that are also present about the new and exciting direction our family is turning. This is a time of great change. A time of new beginning and old loves. And we are all extremely excited.
But most of all I am excited about the prospect of a good night's sleep.
Thursday, November 26, 2009
I awoke this holiday morning still suffering from a draining bout of Strep Throat, coupled with what I believe to be a separate virus still affecting my eyes. Despite the illnesses, the of the morning went off without much of a hitch. That is, until Mrs. LIAYF and I were in the final frenzied throws of getting ourselves and Lukas loaded into the car for our visit to the farm for Thanksgiving dinner.
You've been there, right? Leaving by a deadline, in order to coordinate a child napping on the ride, and still making it on time for you event. Well, things were going swimmingly but we were running a tad late. To make it into the car by our 11:30 deadline, we were piling things into our hands before rushing out the door.
As I was doing said piling, Mrs. LIAYF calls down to me"Honey, grab my wedding ring from above the sink". So I did. I also grabbed the keys, slung Lukas onto my hip, and also grabbed his coats in my hand as I scurried down the stairs. Then as I reached the car and fumbled for the keys, my mind in ten different places, I felt something slip in my grasped hand. What was it? As I set Lukas into the car seat I realized it.
The ring was GONE!
Was that what it was, or had I dropped it somewhere else? A quick scan of the area revealed nothing. Mrs. LIAYF arrived, and with my heart dropped somewhere below my stomach, closer to my bowels, I told her I had no idea where her ring was. We did not panic at that moment (in fact Mrs. LIAYF never did - she is a wonderful understanding spouse) but began to search. With a fine tooth comb we looked everywhere from outside in the wet bushes to inside the car, to inside the house, to shaking out the coats. Nothing. The ring had vanished. I was close to distraught.
After nearly an hour searching with a tired toddler in tow, we reluctantly gave up and left for Thanksgiving dinner, letting my parents know we would be late. Mrs. LIAYF had resigned herself to never seeing her diamond again.
About the time we left the driving rain converged on the region. The traffic for the 1 1/2 hour drive stretched into 3 hours bumper to bumper. By the time we arrived, we were all tired, hungry, sick, and had to pee. Thanksgiving dinner had been served. Plus, it was nearly time for Grandpa to leave and tend to the Farm.
But then, as I reached back to grab Lukas' fleece jacket, I happened to reach down into his sleeve, and there inside the upturned cuff, was Mrs. LIAYF's diamond. Safe and sound, but precariously close to being lost forever.
It was a Thanksgiving Miracle!
Though I still felt pretty stupid for not being more careful with such a valuable possession of my wife's, we all then sat down and enjoyed warmed up turkey with all the fixings, good company, and the knowledge that we had one more things to be thankful for this November 26th.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
So, I am not exactly sure why he needs the company. But, we have had a visitor in our house recently. Our neighbor Nate. Nate is about 8 months older than Lukas and given the hectic schedules of both families we have not been able to hang out nearly as much as we would like with this terrific family. Nate did have a birthday party recently where the boys played nice and enjoyed each others company.
Since then Nate has been visiting quite frequently. He plays with Lukas, has snack with Lukas, and goes down for nap time with Lukas too.
The only problem with Nate visiting so much is that he is not really here. He has become Lukas' not actually imaginary, Imaginary Friend. It is actually pretty cute. Lukas even got a bit upset this morning after breakfast when I went to clean up his plate. "No, leave it there!" he proclaimed. "Nate is going to finish it."
I know having imaginary friends is not uncommon for toddlers. Many of whom are probably real people. I just wasn't expecting it from Lukas as his age (not yet 2 1/2). I suppose there is no harm in it and it doesn't mean that he is in dire need of another little one to hang out with. At least I hope not. And I'm sure he will grow out of it soon enough.
Now excuse me while I go check my Twitter account.
Monday, November 23, 2009
All: “Hiiii James”
Seattledad: “ Well, I guess it's been a tough week for me. Unfortunately, I had a minor relapse”
All: “Ohhhhhh” (disbursed mumblings and quiet whispers back and forth)
Seattledad: “Yeah, everything has been going so well recently too, what with all the long hours spent on remodeling. And the money…yeah the stress that finances add to a situation, coupled with my recent bout with a persistent virus have really kept my recovery ON track. I seemed to be doing so well. So well (fading).
Face in the crowd: “What Happened, Man! Tell us what happened”
Seattledad: “Well, my 2 year old was sitting on the potty yesterday...”
Voice from the back: “Not the potty! Curse those things. You gotta be strong man. Strong.”
Seattledad: “I know, I know. I should’ve seen it coming. He was sitting there, still groggy from naptime and out of habit I sort of exaggerated my stride as I passed the door. Immediately, the kids cracks up.”
Guy in row 5: “You should have extricated yourself right there, Dude!”
Seattledad: “Yes, I should have. But I was too weak. I didn't see it coming. I thought about calling someone, but-no phone. Next thing you know I am passing by the door backwards the other way…and the little guy completely loses it. Loud, exaggerated laughs echoed from the bathroom. Right there guys. Right there I was hooked. I started going back and forth past that door, each time altering my stride or direction in increasingly exaggerated ways. I even did circles till I got dizzy! Sure, I should have found an out. Might have been able to, but I found myself completely lost in the high of the moment."
Face in the Crowd again: "He was on the TOILET fuh crying out loud!"
Seattledad: "And he kept on begging me for MORE! Calling out ‘More Daddy, more!’ and ‘You’re silwi daddy’." (wiping at eyes). "Sorry, I get emotional thinking of it."
Moderator: “That is enough for today James. And don’t let it get to you big guy. Yes, you messed up alright, but that is what we are here for. To get you through these tough times.”
All: “Yeah! Uh, Huh! Word!” (strong looks of support)
Seattledad: “Thanks. That’s why I love you guys. (Looking away, fist clenched, arm in L shape).
Sunday, November 22, 2009
This is a good thing right? Well, not necessarily. For me at least. You see, I am nearly maxed out on the time that I can give to my social networking applications. In fact, I only created a Facebook account because I wanted to see if I could locate a friend of mine from kindergarten. Make that my best friend from kindergarten who moved away just after we started 1st grade. Nick Fringle (Not sure that is the correct spelling). I remember him telling me he was moving to Hillsboro, Oregon. Then I never heard from or of him again. That was something like 36 years ago.
So, I created the Facebook account. Searched for my little buddy Nick. And came up with nothing. Nada. Zilch. It was a big disappointment. I have since spent little to no time on Facebook. The fact is, since I created my Twitter account, the time I have devoted to this blog has suffered. And since I created my blog, the time I have devoted to my family has suffered. And since I created my family, the time I have devoted to myself has suffered.
You get the picture. Devoting another chunk of my already dwindling 'free time' to yet another social networking application would be just too much for me to shoulder, lest I begin to seriously neglect something more important in my life.
So, I guess my question is: Facebook or Twitter? Do you have a preference? Do you do both? How much time do you spend on each, as opposed to blogging? It seems to me that Facebook is used by many more non-blogger types, ie friends and family from real life. (My parents even have an account!) While with Twitter I feel that I can create more of a relationship with interesting folks who are, for the most part, like minded.
In the end, it is one or the other for me, because unless I give up networking on Twitter, or worse yet something else more important like sleeping or spending time with my wife and son, I simply don't have time to be your Facebook Friend.
But, if you're in Seattle anytime soon give me a call. Maybe we can grab a beer and catch up.
Thursday, November 19, 2009
1. Name someone with the same birthday as you. My former boss. It was awwwkward.
2. Where was your first kiss? Oh yeah. In my bedroom. I am pretty sure it was 'Destroyer'.
3. Have you ever seriously vandalized someone else's property? Not that I can remember.
4. Have you ever hit someone of the opposite sex? I am proud to say NO.
5. Have you ever sung in front of a large number of people? Does mumbling the hymns in church as a child count?
6. What's the first thing you notice about your preferred sex? Uh...her smile. Yeah, er...her smile. Was that convincing?
7. What really turns you off? Women with too much makeup.
8. What do you order at Starbucks? Grande Americano (2 pumps mint, 2 pumps mocha, w/room)
9. What is your biggest mistake? Not having kids earlier. This is a blast.
10. Have you ever hurt yourself on purpose? Does home remodeling count?
11. Say something totally random about yourself. I once entered a frog in a hopping contest when I was deeese big (Palm down by my hip.)
12. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity? Funny you should ask... http://liayf.blogspot.com/2008/08/personally-i-dont-see-it.html
13. Do you still watch kiddie movies or TV shows? Only a couple episodes of Elmo with my boy.
14. Did you have braces? No.
15. Are you comfortable with your height? Well, if I was 6 inches taller, studies say I woud have a lot more spending money about now.
16. What is the most romantic thing someone of the preferred sex has done for you? When we met Mrs. LIAYF was completely broke, but still brought groceries over and stocked my fridge. I asked her to stick around.
17. When do you know it's love? When you can remodel a house together without plotting your partner's untimely demise, it's love.
18. Do you speak any other languages? I'm getting skilled at deciphering toddler babble.
19. Have you ever been to tanning salon? Yes. (I grew up in Washington State. And we are as white as falling snow by the time Spring rolls around). It has been years though.
20. Have you ever ridden in a limo? No. But I REALLY want to do that thing where I stand through the moon roof with my arms outstretched as we drive through Time Square. Perhaps someday.
21. What's something that really annoys you? Boy Bands.
22. What's something you really like? Me lady. And me boy.
23. Can you dance? Once my wife stops hysterically laughing at the thought, then I will ask her opinion.
24. Have you ever been rushed by an ambulance into the emergency room? No, thankfully.
25. Tag 5 people! Hmmm, let's see. Who might actually do this? How about:
Steve @ Myboys3
Karen @ If I could escape
Migthy M @ The Mighty M Family
Matt @ DC Urban Dad
Eric @ Juggling Eric
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Things were never like this before. The only explanation I can come up with is that I may be going soft in my old age.
Before the birth of my son a couple of years ago, I had a extremely strong composition. I was born, raised, and spent my early adulthood on our family dairy farm in the southwestern part of Washington state. I worked hard, slept little, and witnessed more than my share of what could be called gruesome things. Whether it involved animal or human, there were many times where I watched blood, including my own, being spilled during those years. Enough blood and gore, in fact, that I became accustomed to witnessing it, and though it always bothered me to a degree, it did little to affect my psyche.
However, those days are fading into the rearview mirror for me now. Nearly 10 years have since gone by. And the pendulum that is my composition, my make-up, my ability to deal with such circumstances, seems to have swung the other way along with the passing of time.
The first clue that this shift was taking place came in the hospital after the birth of Lukas. I had just accompanied Mrs. LIAYF through a difficult 80 hour labor. We were both dead tired, but the time had come to make the decision on circumcision. Mrs. LIAYF left it up to me, but only requested that if I decided to have it done, that I be there with him. So I did. It was a new and painful experience seeing my baby boy laying there helpless and in such pain.
In the end it became too much. I felt light headed and the next thing I remember was looking at the spinning shoes around my head, of the doctor and nurse. They set me in a chair, and we all had a long, genuine laugh at my expense.
However, it didn’t end there. I had knee surgery later that same Summer, and as I was being prepped for the procedure, out came the needle. I had not slept at all the night before. My head started spinning, and again down I went. This time it was not as humorous as the last time. Though still worthy of a few laughs.
Fast forward to last week, when I went in to get a seasonal flu shot. I again had not been sleeping well. I was escorted around to sit on a bed. Out came the smallish needle. I felt light headed once again. Had a sense of what was coming. But this time I stopped the nurse. Told him that I needed to lie down and was allowed to. After a few minutes of laying there regaining my sense of normal, I got up and left. Without fainting. And without laughing about it either.
What bothers me now is that I may not be able to respond appropriately when and if that day comes where my child is hurt and bleeding in front of me. I'm not sure what has brought these recent fainting episodes. Though, they didn’t begin to happen until after I became a father at nearly 40 years old. Correlation? Have any of you experienced anything similar?
I guess they weren't kidding when they said 'Everything changes after you have a child.'
Photo by ZaldyImg's
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Ok, ok . Fair enough. Those are not my words. Thomas Paine, in fact, penned those words, in reference to struggles of a newly declared independent nation against the treachery of a dastardly and oppressive invader from foreign soil, right after the birth of our nation in late 1776.
I looked it up to refresh my memory, so I figure I am at least as smart as a 5th grader.
As for the quote, I find relevance in those words even to this day. Perhaps it's just that I am battling a rather dastardly and oppresive bug which is making me feel as if my throat was given the once over by an angry drunk with a belt sander. Or it could be that we are going through some fairly substantial life changes here at Casa de LIAYF resulting in late nights, long weekends, no down-time, and plenty of Thanksgiving sized helpings of mental stress being served up over said change.
However, as the Black Knight would say "That? That's just a flesh wound!"
No what really got to me today (aside from the rude, middle aged grocery checker ironically enough named Darwin) was witnessing Lukas go from his shiny, happy normal self to sick little boy in a matter of minutes.
He had mentioned his stomach hurt a couple of times earlier in the day, but then went about business as usual laughing, smiling and being his goofy self. Then it was "Mommy, pick me up!" And as he ran for her he inexplicably veered off in a near perfect 90 degree angle towards me, arms still outstretched. I obliged and picked him up only to be immediately rewarded with a projectile vomit shower. It appears that 1 out of 1 kid in this house prefers to puke on daddy, at least the first time. Mrs. LIAYF was christened three times this evening after the initial incident.
The poor little guy didn't stop until he was all emptied out and asking to be put to bed, which, after calling the consulting nurse and also verifying his fever was not too high, we did.
In his 28 months this was the very first such vomiting episode for our son. I think that after a good nights sleep, he will be feeling much better. However, this was a tough thing to witness for this dad. You never like to see your kids sick, but this whole stomach flu thing is just disturbing in a whole NEW way for us.
No, I'm not a Founding Father. Just a father who has found another reason to worry.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
"Dat one" Lukas then called out, startling me out of my daydream and preempting my very own choice. Not exactly what I had in mind, but I had no say in the matter. And so it was.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
"I saw a cwown yesterday!!"
"You siwii Daaaddy!" (laughing)
"One square for pee-pee Daddy!"
"Cover me up. Cover me up Mommy!"
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Then last year we discovered what real Halloween horror was as our son was admitted to Seattle Children's Hospital with a serious staff infection. We were quarantined in our room for 36 hours over the holiday while the hospital confirmed the infection was not MRSA. It was the scariest Halloween Mrs. LIAYF and I ever experienced.
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
I had been anticipating the arrival, but was still unsure what I would do about it. My uncertainty had nothing to do with the risk of the vaccine. Mrs. LIAYF and I had done the research and decided that the risk of Lukas contracting the virus at his daycare was greater than the risks associated with the vaccine. No, my concern lie with the fact that he is only 28 months old, just over the cutoff age for the mist, which was the only form of the vaccine available. We had serious questions of whether he would be able to successfully inhale it through his nose. A nose that was also runny.
However, I thought about this all day. There are 18 toddlers in close proximity in Lukas' daycare room. Once one of them got H1N1, then the rest would soon have it. If I had the chance to get my son the vaccine now, then I owed it to him to at least try. So I picked him up after work and drove the 10 blocks to our clinic, arriving just past 5:00. As I approached the clinic, 2 year old in my arms, I was told "We are closed!"
I needed more information about future availability, so still holding Lukas I attempted to flag someone down for information. All the nurses were finishing up with the last of the people and paid us no attention. I waited. Finally, a woman came over and I asked if the mist would still be available in the morning and would it work for Lukas. "Can he breath in through his nose?". "I believe so. Lukas, breath in through your nose" He just buried his head in my shoulder. I let them know that he had done this outside before entering. Dubious looks ensued. "He is too young. You will just have to wait for the shot in a couple weeks" was her verdict.
At that point I took him outside the glass doors and set him down. "Can you breath in for daddy like a bunny?" I said, sucking in through my nose. He did a huge inhale, followed by a laugh. "Very good, Buddy!" I glanced up to see the nurse looking at us. I motioned toward my nose that he was doing it. She reluctantly opened the door and said. "Let's give it a try". We used the bunny trick (suggested earlier by the same co-worker) and he successfully took all the vaccine, then flashed a big "I did it" smile. I was proud of him.
"Lucky you", said the nurse. "There were only 2 doses left in our supply."
I don't know yet about 'Lucky'. No one really ever knows how their child will react to a new vaccine. All we can do is weigh the various risk factors and make the best decision given the information available.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Until a couple of days ago.
Now rather, things are more like full stream ahead. We're not sure what changed with our little guy at that point, but since that time he seems to have lost interest in the whole Underwear Power concept. Instead, he seems to not really care much if he has an 'accident', letting things flow as they will while continuing to do whatever it was he was involved in, wet and or dirty. There appears to be no embarrassment factor. No uncomfortable moments for him. No desire to hold it in.
After 4, count em 1,2,3,4 accidents today, we have had to sit Lukas down and have a serious talk about the possibility that he will need to start wearing the dreaded diapers again. He didn't like the idea. He cried some real, as well as some crocodile tears at the idea, whining that he wants to "keep wearing" his underwear.
Perhaps that will make the difference here. We don't know. We really don't want to put him back into diapers at this point, so we are hoping that the threat of it has the desired effect.
Conversely, there is one other alternative that presented itself tonight. Shame.
Alright, alright, before you judge me on this hear me out. I am not talking about making Lukas feel ashamed about not being able to hold his bladder. No, that would be a bit uncalled for wouldn't it.
Rather, I think I am just going to show him this picture several times a day.
It's a picture of the pants he was sent home in from daycare today. The 'institutional' pants they keep on hand when a child soils all the clothes he has on hand at the center. Yep, those are pinkish corduroy 'pants'. Somehow I think these beauties may just work in our favor.
At the very least they will make Mrs. LIAYF and I motivated to keep him on schedule.
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Well, what ever the reason, every time I hear such a reference I find myself thinking “Wow, Puzzle Master. That sounds cool”. And you know why? Because they are being openly labeled a Master. And who doesn’t respect a title like that?
This got me thinking. Thinking about how I too would love to be referred to using the Master suffix. True, I don’t do complicated puzzles. But, there must be something I’m good enough at that would allow me to be labeled Master.
Brainstorming, I came up with a few ideas off the top of my head. How would these sound? “Today we chat with….”
1. Coffee guzzling Master SeattleDad
2. Mumbling kid songs to 2 year old because he can't remember the words Master SeattleDad
3. Cleaning up ‘scattered everywhere’ toys Master SeattleDad.
4. Piling washed dishes on top of already dry dishes in the drainer Master SeattleDad
5. Shrinking wife’s favorite clothes in the dryer Master SeattleDad
6. Stepping his socks directly in cat vomit at the bottom of the stairs first thing in the morning Master SeattleDad
7. Frantically searching the house for his one set of car keys so he won’t be too late for an important meeting Master SeattleDad
8. Burning the candle at both ends until the hot wax singes vital body parts Master SeattleDad
9. Overspending on gifts for spouse because he orders online at the last minute Master SeattleDad
10. Avoiding fostering male friendships, to spend more time with wife and son Master SeattleDad
Those all sound great. But mostly, I just aspire to one label: “Today we chat with Fathering Master, SeattleDad.”
I’m certainly not there yet, but I’m working on it.
Monday, October 19, 2009
So, the guy reluctantly decides to take a look behind door #1. What he sees terrifies him! A whole group of bedraggled looking souls wrapped in chains, flames shooting up all around them, swinging sledge hammers, trying to chip away at boulders. He decides that the other doors must be better than this and indicates to the demon that he wants to move on.
Then, slowly, door #2 is opened and the guy realizes that door #1 wasn’t all that bad after all. The scene was similar to door #1 with the fire, and chains, and sledgehammers, only behind this door those same bedraggled souls were constantly being poked in the midsection with sharp pointed spears by demons who were laughing uncontrollably. A bit freaked out, the man quickly decides to move to door #3.
Terrified, and unsure what he would find behind door #3 the guy has his eyes closed tight when he hears the sound of pleasant music and chatter. He opens his eyes to find that behind door #3 there are also a bunch of bedraggled looking souls, standing knee deep in reeking putrid sewage… but they are chatting with each other and sipping coffee. The smell was enough to turn his stomach, but the man was no fool, and he quickly recognized that this was his best option. “I’ll take door #3” he told the demon. The door closed behind him with a crash._
It was at that point a crackle came over the speaker system as flames began to fill the room and demons with spears arrived. “All right guys, this is the Devil and you know the drill. Coffee break is OVER. Now get back on your heads!”
Sadly, my coffee break of a weekend is over too, and I need to get back to spending nearly every free moment I have (including evenings) on my basement remodel if we hope to EVER get it completed, much less on time. I’ll still be around, just not as visible.
And if, by chance, you never hear from me again...please remember my plight before trying to do any sizable portion of a remodeling project for yourself, especially with a toddler in the house.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
When I stopped by to pick up Lukas Friday afternoon I asked his care provider about the project. With a big smile she picked up and showed me the 'habitat' where the 18 different spiders would spend the week.
It was just a big jar.
At that point the thought immediately occurred to me, and I suspect you may be thinking along the same lines, that we need to find Lukas a Big Ass spider because it is going to be something akin to Survivor: Spider Island in there.
I confirmed from the teacher that "Well, we did only actually release a couple last year by the time the end of the week came around." Ya think? Because unless they are making a side trip to Petco to pick up some Spider Chow, the littler ones are going to be looking mighty tasty by Wednesday or so.
So, during all the remodeling and yard work this weekend my goal was to find an appropriate arachnid candidate. I needed Lukas to have a ringer, lest he be watching as another kid's spider chomps off the head of his spider and does a happy cannibal dance around the jar. The horror!
What seemed the perfect candidate (out in our garage) nearly knocked me off a precariously stacked pile of our basement belongings. I was perched atop it looking for the right board for one of the ten thousand project we are working on when the ginormous sucker jumped right out at me, sending me back and off balance. I recovered nicely but he quickly hid away, apparently waiting for his next victim. I decided this particular spider was a bit too dangerous even for me.
Then, later as we were doing yard work, Mrs. LIAYF found our Goliath sitting right there on our yard waste container soaking up the sun. I ran inside, grabbed a jar, and poked holes in the lid so the big guy could breath and we had ourselves a survivor. At least we hope so, since I would feel kinda bad if he doesn't make it to the end of Spider Week.
All that was left was for Lukas to give his spider an appropriate moniker. I was hoping he would go for something befitting a warrior. Like Maximus, or Atilla, or something equally fear inducing. But in the end he opted for a name more befitting the spider of a two-year-old.
"Lukas what do you want to name your spider?"
Sounds menacing. I'll let you know how it turns out.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
And Finally, courtesy of my being old and apparently hard to buy for, I find myself in possession of some Barnes and Noble gift certificates (which I appreciate). I have never read a graphic novel, but would like to get one. Anyone have a recommendation of a good one? Just one caveat: I am not into Super Hero stories.
Thanks in advance.
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Now, Lukas has a lot of word and strings them together into pretty complex sentences for a 27 month old, but his friend, who I have never heard say more than a word or two at a time (as opposed to Lukas' constant dialog), said this sentence with such clarity that I had to do a double take. He sounded like he was 5 years old. Very impressive.
At home later that night I relayed this revelation to Mrs. LIAYF, who had heard the boy say something very similar a couple days earlier. She was equally impressed. Then, as we listened to Lukas, it dawned on me (since I hadn't really thought twice about it) that, like a lot of kids his age, has trouble with his F's. He was replacing them with B's. Henceforth, a fox becomes a box in Lukas toddler speak.
This is very cute, but realizing that he may need some assistance getting his enunciation of F correct, Mrs. LIAYF decided to try a little experiment with him as we were getting him ready for bed:
"Lukas, can you say flower?"
"No, say Fffflower"
"Can you say, friend?
"No, friend with an F. Ffff-riend"
"Hmmm, Lukas can you say F?"
"Exactly! Now say F-friend"
"No, F like in father. F-father. Can you say that?"
"Eff Bother" (I'm not reading anything into that)
"Lukas, you are just adorable! And perfect in every way. Ready for bed Sweetie?"
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
If so, I think I have entered it. Terrible 2's? What is so terrible about them? Actually, Lukas is at a stage of development that is abundant with wonderful moments. Fun moments. Happy moments. Moments that warm the cockles of my heart.
No, I don't know what cockles are, but mine are toasty folks.
Could that spot occupy this age, this stage in a child's development? The stage when they can talk to you in a sweet little voice - smiling wide and giving you gems such as "I love you, daddy!" or "Sit down and play with me, daddy" all with genuine heartfelt emotion.
Before they ever even think of saying things such as "I hate you!" or "You're mean" or "I hope you die!"?
When you mean the world to them almost as much as they mean it to you?
When practically everything they do is just so darn adorable, that even those frustrating moments where you have every right to be upset, you just can't bring yourself to be?
Well, that my friends. That is the spot I find myself in right now.
And it sure is Sweet.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
As for the album, I am really enjoying it. I mean REALLY. I have to admit I have been a huge fan since their inception. Mrs. LIAYF even had partial lyrics to Smile ingraved on the inside of my wedding ring ("Don't it make you smile"). Yes, this album was eagerly anticipated, and it didn't disappoint. The songs range from energetic and catchy (Gonna See my Friend) to soulful and beautiful (Just Breath).
I usually forgo listening to the radio or music on our drive to daycare, but this morning I couldn't help myself and slipped in the disc and hit the play button. Upon hearing the opening riff of gonna see my friend, Lukas smiled widely and proclaimed "Guitar!". I beamed, and asked him if he liked the music. His head nodded up and down with emphasis, but before the next song ended we had arrived at our destination.
On the way home, I turned up the music early on and let him listen. Looking in the rear view mirror I could tell he was liking what he was hearing. All smiles. As the song ended, Lukas let out a big "Yeah!" and clapped. Then he softly opined "It is nice moosic, daddy."
Some things, it seems, are inherently genetic.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
Lukas: "I want da kniife"
Me: "I-I-I want the knife" (busting out in a hearty laugh)
Lukas: (laughing now) "I-I want kniiiife, Daddy!"
Me: "I-I-I want-want DA Kniiiife. . .Pleaaase!"
Mrs. LIAYF: (rolling eyes) "You need to stop encouraging him!"
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Monday, September 14, 2009
Each fall for the past 6 years that we have lived in our current house, September has ushered in a feast of Italian Plums from our lone backyard tree. I have no idea how old it is, but it is mature and has produced ample fruit for Mrs. LIAYF and I to eat whole, cook with, and give away to family and friends. Unfortunately, that has still accounted for only a fraction of the fruit this tree bears and thus each year way too much fruit has gone to waste. Something needed to be done.
Then, earlier this year we heard about a local program called Community Harvest. The goal of Community Harvest and their volunteers is to pick fruit trees, such as our Italian Plum, and to make that harvested fruit available to local food bank patrons. We loved the idea and signed our tree up for the program.
When finished, over 200 lbs of fruit was harvested for our local food bank. Eight boxes full, not counting the half box we kept for ourselves. It proved a bountiful harvest, and a great opportunity to teach our son a valuable lesson in sharing.
Especially when you have more than you can consume.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Yes, today I turn another year older - 42 actually. Blow out the candles. Get enthusiastically sung to. Open fun gifts from my wife and son. And, in case you aren't quite comprehending what I am getting at: Today is my birthday!
Why am I making such a blatant pronouncement about this? Well, last year my birthday fell on a Friday, and attempting to be a bit clever with my own birthday post, I posted this Haiku Friday entry which was greeted by a resounding cyber silence.
That birthday post from last year continues to be the only post since the early days of this blog that garnered absolutely NO comments. Kinda laughable if you think about it now, but in the days following that post I was a bit melancholy that none of my blogging friends had figured it out and left me a comment.
Mrs. LIAYF just shook her head at me and told me that I needed to more obvious. She was right, as she often is.
So, again, today is my BIRTHDAY! Do as you will.
P.S. The meaning of everything isn't actually 42, as Deep Thought calculates in The Hitchhikers Guide.
No, actually it is this:
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Well, it is. And I am sure that many people get tons of use out of theirs. But us? Not so much. Yeah, we used our stroller more often when Lukas was in his first year. Still not a lot. But ever since he started to walk, we just haven't had much inclination to use it. Most of the time we have been content to either:
1. Let him walk - Yes, this was difficult at times. Especially when he was about 12-18 months since he wanted to grab everything in sight. But we opted to redirect him rather than subject him to sitting strapped into a place that limited his movement and visibility.
2. Carry him - We often will just carry Lukas around when we go somewhere, switching him from hip, to shoulders, to the other hip, to the other parent. He really loves to be on our shoulders where he can see all that is going on.
3. Red Wagon - We live close to a neighborhood business district where we can walk and shop locally. Lukas much prefers to ride in his wagon than the stroller. Plus, he gets to say "Hi!" to all sorts of people, who generally brighten considerably afterwards.
Combine all these things, and we have used our stroller maybe one or twice in the past 9 months. In truth, I am questioning whether we will ever use it again with our little guy. He is past 2 years old now and gets around extremely well on his own. I have been wondering if this is a normal transition or if we are just not stroller people. I do see other parents pushing around much older kids, but can't really envision that being us.
I suppose if I suddenly took up jogging, I might use it more often (Yes, that was intended as a joke. You can stop smirking now Mrs. LIAYF). Or possibly we don't use it much because we only have one child. Maybe we will use it much more once there is another family member in the picture. Assuming that happens in the foreseeable future.
How about you readers? I'm curious. At what age did you give up using a stroller for your kids?