Thursday, May 26, 2011

Hazelnut baby poopachino

If you've ever used the lavatory on an airplane and smelled coffee, there's a reason for it. It kills odors. Many flight attendants place bags of coffee in or near the lavatory to kill the odors.

I had a bright idea last week. Use my coffee grounds to kill the odor in the trash can next to the changing table. I drink coffee daily. I use an aeropress which creates a small coffee brick when done. Each day I dump the brick into the trash can. The smell is much more tolerable and a little hazelnutty.

There are a few things that make me smile:

1) Landing a plane full of passengers in bad weather

2) Watching kids and soliders get off the plane

3) Mail

4) Seeing my wife walk through the door after work

5) Mid-morning naps with my daughter


Whenever I am home Natali and I have a routine. Kelli leaves around 6:20AM. Natali wakes up around 6:30AM. I give her a nice big 6 ounce bottle and then we take a nap. I love just watching her sleep next to me. I'm still in awe of her.

Natali is being a little more expressive lately. Her new thing is to scream. Not in pain....just screaming...especially when she sees a photo of herself or herself in a mirror.

She is also being a little more expressive in her moods.

Natali is working on her tantrum technique. Not good, but it's too be expected.

Just a few months from now Natali will be one year old. Not sure where we will throw down....Euless, London, Portland.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Mother's Prayer for its Daughter

Though I am a father, this prayer still applies. I just finished Bossypants by Tina Fey. Very good book. One chapter really caught my eye. Here it is:
Fey, Tina (2011). Bossypants [Kindle Digital Version]. Retrieved from

First, Lord: No tattoos. May neither Chinese symbol for truth nor Winnie-the-Pooh holding the FSU logo stain her tender haunches.

May she be Beautiful but not Damaged, for it’s the Damage that draws the creepy soccer coach’s eye, not the Beauty.

When the Crystal Meth is offered, May she remember the parents who cut her grapes in half And stick with Beer.

Guide her, protect her When crossing the street, stepping onto boats, swimming in the ocean, swimming in pools, walking near pools, standing on the subway platform, crossing 86th Street, stepping off of boats, using mall restrooms, getting on and off escalators, driving on country roads while arguing, leaning on large windows, walking in parking lots, riding Ferris wheels, roller-coasters, log flumes, or anything called “Hell Drop,” “Tower of Torture,” or “The Death Spiral Rock ‘N Zero G Roll featuring Aerosmith,” and standing on any kind of balcony ever, anywhere, at any age.

Lead her away from Acting but not all the way to Finance. Something where she can make her own hours but still feel intellectually fulfilled and get outside sometimes And not have to wear high heels.

What would that be, Lord? Architecture? Midwifery? Golf course design? I’m asking You, because if I knew, I’d be doing it, Youdammit.

May she play the Drums to the fiery rhythm of her Own Heart with the sinewy strength of her Own Arms, so she need Not Lie With Drummers.

Grant her a Rough Patch from twelve to seventeen. Let her draw horses and be interested in Barbies for much too long, For Childhood is short—a Tiger Flower blooming Magenta for one day— And Adulthood is long and Dry-Humping in Cars will wait. O Lord, break the Internet forever, That she may be spared the misspelled invective of her peers And the online marketing campaign for Rape Hostel V: Girls Just Wanna Get Stabbed.

And when she one day turns on me and calls me a Bitch in front of Hollister, Give me the strength, Lord, to yank her directly into a cab in front of her friends, For I will not have that Shit. I will not have it.

And should she choose to be a Mother one day, be my eyes, Lord, That I may see her, lying on a blanket on the floor at 4:50 A.M., all-at-once exhausted, bored, and in love with the little creature whose poop is leaking up its back. “My mother did this for me once,” she will realize as she cleans feces off her baby’s neck. “My mother did this for me.” And the delayed gratitude will wash over her as it does each generation and she will make a Mental Note to call me. And she will forget. But I’ll know, because I peeped it with Your God eyes.


Saturday, May 21, 2011

A long month

Darren has been gone a lot for the last month or so.  Since he has to commute to work now it takes away a lot of his home time.  His schedule for May has him home only Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.  It's great for daycare, not great for being a family.  He gets to spend 3 days a week with Natali, but I am at work most of that time, so we only get 3 evenings together a week.  This past Thursday was my birthday.  I thought we might do something together, but it was not to be.  With the crappy weather moving in Darren had to actually head to work on Thursday night so he wouldn't get stuck due to the weather.  He left for the airport about 20 minutes after I got home from work.  I completely understand why he had to go, and I am not upset about it, but I was really disappointed that he had to leave.  We are both having to make some sacrifices right now.  I can't wait until September when he gets to quit the crappy commuting and be based back here in Dallas again.

Knowing how bad this month has been with Darren just being home weekdays I wanted him to get a different schedule for June with weekends off.  Not only have we been missing time together, but Darren has been missing some fun things Natali and I have done on the weekends.  We had dinner with Eric and Angela one night, we spent a long weekend in Sacramento at my sister's house, we went to San Antonio for a day visiting Darren's best friend from high school, and today we had a nice playdate with some other good friends of ours.  It has been nice being able to hang out with friends because it gets lonely without Darren around, but I know Darren really would have liked to do all of those things with us, so it sucks for him too.  We talked it over and decided we could manage ok if he bid for weekends off.  If he did that he would always get a 3-day weekend (Friday, Saturday, Sunday or Saturday, Sunday, Monday).  Then I would just have to shift my work schedule by a day to be home 1 day during the week.  That way he would get weekends off, we could still do part time daycare, and we would have 1 full day each week when we are all home together for the entire day.  Luckily for us Darren got a schedule for June with Friday, Saturday, and Sunday off each week, so I will be working Tuesday-Saturday and stay home with Natali on Mondays, and all three of us will be home on Sundays.  I am looking forward to it.  Anything would be better than the crappy schedule he has this month.  Of course, Darren did just inform me that he wants to trade a trip at the beginning of the month for a different trip on different days.  I am very supportive of whatever he wants to do, but it does disappoint me a bit.  The trip he wants to trade for would have him come home late at night on Monday the 30th, and then be gone again from Wednesday morning through Saturday.  This means he would only be home 1 day during that week, which doesn't work out for daycare.  Of course, the 30th is Memorial Day, a holiday for me, so it actually will be doable.  It is unfortunate for me though, because I was actually scheduled to take Natali to daycare that day anyway.  I was honestly really looking forward to it.  I love my daughter to death and I enjoy taking care of her, but it was going to be such a nice little break for me.  I had planned to drop her off and then come home and do some really good cleaning for a few hours and then go see a movie.  It was a good plan.  I sort of feel bad for wanting a break, but I honestly could use it.  I'm not complaining or anything, but in Natali's 9 months of life I have had 2 days away from her when we went to Vegas and my mom watched her when she was 3 months old, and then I had a few hours 1 night back in February when my mom watched her and we went up to Winstar.  Otherwise, my only time away has been when I'm at work and Natali is at daycare.  Work is definitely not what I consider a break.  Of course, spending my "break" day cleaning is not my first choice either, but I feel like my house is a constant disaster and I would love to be able to clean without worrying about waking up a sleeping baby, or trying to figure out what I can clean in the 5 minutes Natali is distracted in her exersaucer with Cheerios.  The house never gets clean this way.  Plus, I was planning a movie too, so that would have been a real break.  Oh well.  It was not meant to be I guess.

Anyway, enough venting.  I am a good supportive wife who recognizes the sacrifices we are both making for Natali.  I understand how great we have things in the long run and things could always be worse.  Natali is a very easy baby to care for, so its not like my time alone with her is difficult.  Although, it is a bit more exhausting these days now that she crawls.  That baby can move!  :-)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Single Parent....blogger

Tuesday morning my sleep was interrupted by a slap on the face and baby noises. After Kelli left I gave Natali her bottle and we took our morning nap together. She woke up before me and was ready to get out of the bed...thus the slap and baby noises. Best alarm clock ever.

Natali has perfected her crawling. She is now all over the place. Her speed isn't too quick....yet.


I took her to her 9 month check up last week. Natali is an even 20 pounds and 28 inches tall. The Doctor put her in the 75% percentile.

She is still trying to stand on her own. Shouldn't be much longer. Right now she can stand fine but gets excited, shifts her weight and falls.

I came to a realization the other day about Kelli and her making meals.

We have been together for almost 9 years. In that time she has made maybe 14 meals for me. Not exatterating. Kelli had made Natali over 60 meals. Bleh.

Her diet is expanding. Lots of fresh foods. All her meals at home are made by Kelli. We can mix and match things (like pear and mangos or butternut squash and peas). She likes it all.


It's still hard to believe it's been 9 months. I look back at photos and videos of her and just sigh. She has changed so much in the last 9 months. She went from beautiful. Of course when she was meh I thought she was beautiful. Maybe she is still meh?

Natali and I took a trip to the park yesterday. She wasn't in the best mood.


I hope Kelli will get back into the swing of blogging. It's harder for me since I'm on the road 4 days a week. If not I am okay being a single parent blogger.

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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Blah, Blah, Blah

I'm updated my stillageek blog tonight, this one tomorrow. I think Kelli has abandoned blogging again. For now.....


Thursday, May 12, 2011

9 months in

Natali has been alive longer outside the womb than inside the womb.

I took her to her 9 month visit. It helps that I have weekdays off every now and then.

Natali weighed 20 pounds exactly and is 28 inches tall. She's gained 2.4 pounds and 1 inch since her 6 month visit.

I tried to make sure she was in a good mood for the visit by feeding her at 6:20AM, taking a nap with her till 8:30 AM and then feeding her solid food (apple and pineapple mixed together with oatmeal!) at 9:30AM. Didn't work.

She was fine playing with me or in my lap, but if her foot touched the paper covered examination table she screamed. So yeah she was pissy when the nurse took her measurements, getting weighed, getting the doctors examination and getting her blood drawn. Drama momma.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

On the move

While I was criss crossing the western portion of the United States working, Kelli and Natali flew to Sacramento. I think Natali has been on 20 flights...gotta check her log book.

Over the weekend Natali finally figured out how to crawl. Kelli sent me a video of the event. I was amazed and saddened. She's been on the move ever since.

Gone are the days where I could put her in the middle of her room and wash my hands. I tried it on Tuesday. Natali was right behind me as I walked to the restroom.

While she enjoys being mobile, I can tell she wants to walk. She will use EVERYTHING to pull herself up right. Once up she will occasionally stand with one hand free and momentarily two hands free. She's practicing. Smart girl. Too smart maybe?

On the trip to Sacramento Kelli tried out a new car seat. In the past we used the Britax seats we have installed in our cars. They are GREAT seats...but they are huge. The are too wide to fit down the aisle of an airplane, thus I had to lug it over the seats.

Kelli and Natali traveled alone. Kelli found a narrow and light weight seat on Amazon.

She bought a Combi lightweight car seat . I then bought a Go Go Babyz travel system .  It worked great. Kelli was able to wheel Natali down the aisle and put the entire thing in the seat with Natali still in the seat. Easy. Glad it worked out. It will be our new travel seat until she is 1 and is able to use the kid safe seatbelt system.

Beyond that Natali has been a very easy baby for us. Sleeping through the night, easy to calm down, lets us know when she is hungry, helps Kelli with her computer problems and


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Am I being selfish?

I am from a family of 5. My parents had my brother,  then me, then adopted three girls.

Kelli is from a family of 4, all from her mother.

Natali is so far our only kid. I have no desire for more kids. On more than one occassion I have expressed my desire to be snipped to Kelli. She protest each time.

I only want one kid. True years ago I wanted zero kids. I changed my mind. I don't think I will change my mind on wanting more.

Natali is perfect in my eyes, however I don't want to go through sleepless nights and all the other little things newborns require. Once is enough thank you.

On a podcast the other day I heard if you have just one kid you are being selfish and that having a second kid you are doing it for your first kid. An instant friend.

My sister has just one kid. My sister in law has one kid (but another is planned). My brother in law has two kids (supposedly neither one planned). Hmm.

Natali will grow up in a house of two intelligent adults who will literally be able to show her the world. She will see her cousins several times per year since, even though they live on the east and west coast, they are just a single flight away.

Most families plan a weekend get away to see family. Natali will be able to say on a Friday night "Dad can I see my cousin Haley tomorrow ? The flights to Sacramento are green." Saturday morning I can drive her up the the airport and either fly with her, or simply send her on her way.

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Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Marathon Day

I arrived from work Monday afternoon. Natali looked at me inquizitively when I came in. She seemed to be thinking, "Well look who's back."

Today we were back into our routine. Six ounce bottle, Ten minutes of news, then back to sleep. We did extended our nap though...and that might have been a bad idea.

Most morning we nap from 6:20AM till 8:45AM. Today we went to 9:25AM when Natali woke up next to me and started talking.

Between 9:25AM and 7:50PM she slept just 30 minutes. It was a marathon day.