August 14, 2005


61205 Double Trouble Lane
Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN

August 14, 2005


Internationally known father Matthew, otherwise known as “P. Daddy” has dropped the “P” from his name.

He will now be referred to only as “Daddy.”

The change reflects the evolution of Daddy’s life and will also avoid confusion for his two kids when they discover no other dad has an initial before his name.

All further questions can be referred to his Managing Partner, Mommy (formerly known as O. Mommy).

August 13, 2005

The Adventures of TheMonk & Swee’Pea, Part II

When we last left our heroes they had just left the hospital and Mommy, Daddy and babies had all made it home safely.


So TheMonk and Swee’Pea were plopped in their crib
With matching onesies and an “I (heart) Grandma” bib
They were sleepy and tired without much to say
Between sleeping, eating and pooping all day

It soon became apparent, the two weren’t the same
TheMonk was the wild one while Swee’Pea was quite tame
TheMonk would greet you with a growl and a grunt
While Swee’Pea had the cry of a cute little runt

It soon became clear that two babies weren’t easy
And it’s not just the diapers making them queasy
No time to sleep, no time to rest
Who knew parenthood could be such a test

Meanwhile, Mom and Dad, were they in this too deep
Or did it just seem that way with so little sleep
They weren’t outnumbered, they matched up one-on-one
But if you’re keeping score, you knew they were done

And in the beginning the babies fed from a tube
That came along side a finger, and not from the boob
It took hours and hours to finish the feed
Making Mom and Dad question, “Why did we breed!”

Finally, they couldn’t take it no more!
So they called in a consultant who came to their door.
She examined them carefully without any luck
Until she exclaimed, “These babies can’t suck!”

No wonder it’s taken them so long to eat
They just aren’t that good when put to the teat
But using these bottles will give them more power
Soon you’ll feed by the minute instead of the hour!

With this small change, everything seemed so right
The mood of the house changed from darkness to light
Mommy & Daddy could now sleep in ’til noon
(And if you believe that, I’d like to sell you the moon)

Now eight weeks have passed since the babies’ birth day
So they coo and they smile and react well to play
TheMonk eats well, he’s as big as a house
While Swee’Pea is smaller, like a little field mouse

Mommy and Daddy have adjusted well too
And the house seems less and less like a zoo
The only one who would dispute any of that
Would be poor, neglected Nutmeg the cat

Now Mom and Dad have experience under their belt
And the babies are still making loving hearts melt
There’ll be more to this story so stop by and see
Another installment of the Adventures of TheMonk and Bri

August 12, 2005

Childhood memories

Tonight, while giving my baby boy a bath, he farted in the tub. I laughed, made the requisite comments about having his own jacuzzi and we moved on.

Then, while drying him off he did it again. Spontaneously, I said full of joy and vigor, “Was that a Froggy!”

I stopped in my tracks. Until that moment I had forgotten that in my house when we were kids, we called farts “froggies.” I’m sure it was because of their similarity to the sound of a frog croaking but that’s not my point. My point is that it started me wondering about all the other things that I experienced as a child and if or when they will reappear in my current role as Daddy.

Since I started this blog, I promised myself I wouldn’t write strictly about pooping and peeing and I sense I’m getting very close to that right now. (And I have no doubt I’ll hear it from Andrea that I was talking about farting on my blog) So let me end by asking…

What things in your childhood reappeared once parenthood hit

August 11, 2005

Okay, what’s going on here?

Last week I wrote about the importance of keeping a schedule with the babies. The last couple of nights, however, have proven that we have to be flexible when it comes to these things.

Last night, for example, the babies ate at 6:30 p.m. We played with them for a while and they both fell asleep on my belly because we anticipated feeding them again around 8:30 or 9:00 p.m. 9:00 p.m. came and went and we decided to put them to bed. They didn’t wake up until after midnight. We fed them, put them to bed and they slept until 4:30 a.m. after which I took them from their crib and brought them into bed with us where they slept for another hour.

Could this mean we are close to being able to sleep through the night I’m not sure. Just when I think I have this parenting thing figured out, they throw a curveball that I didn’t see coming. All I know is that I got almost seven hours of sleep last night. Wow.

August 9, 2005

Did you hear that?

I am sitting in the quiet of our downstairs, knowing the babies are sound asleep and then I hear it. At least I think I hear it.

I’m in the shower, knowing Andrea has the babies quiet and calm. And yet, as the water cascades over my head, drowning out all noise, I swear I hear it.

I am in the garage, putting away the lawn mower and knowing I have at least an hour before the babies have to feed again. And there’s that sound again. I know it’s there.

Can’t you hear that Can’t you!

I swear I hear the unmistakable sound of babies crying.

The short staccato “eh-eh’s” and the longer drawn out “uuuuuuuuuaaaaaaah” crescendo-ing into an all out cry to humanity “AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!.” The sound that can bring rain or, at least, parents running from a 1/2 mile radius.

The crying, it’s there alright. And each time I hear it, I rush upstairs or turn off the shower or run in from the garage and find…



A quiet so real, even the crickets have called it a night.

Damn. It happens all… the… time. I imagine babies crying. It’s not enough I hear real crying all the time, now I have to imagine I hear it too. I feel like that cute kid actor in the Bruce Willis movie – the one who saw dead people. Only I hear phantom babies crying.

And boy there can be some crying in this household. I can’t get away from it. First one baby cries, then the other, then both together hitting decibels only heard at your local airport. And now, if I’m not in the room with the babies I hear them cry only to find out… I’m going crazy.

Like right now! I SWEAR I hear crying. It sounds soooo real.

What’s that

Oh, damn, that really is crying.

Gotta go.

August 8, 2005


If I’m going to sit in the chaise lounge eating Peanut M&M’s while my wife struggles with practices her Pilates on DVD, it’s probably best if I keep my comments to myself.

August 4, 2005

The sacrifices us parents make

Early on, Not-for-profit-dad (another father of twins) advised me to drink coffee, and lots of it, to help fight the fatigue of raising two babies. There’s only one problem – I don’t really like the taste of coffee. Chocolate, on the other hand, I really like the taste of that. So, if I’m going to have coffee, it has to have plenty of chocolate in it.

Prior to the babies being born I frequented Starbucks just about every day for a chocolate mocha and their comfy chairs so I could take a break from work and read the paper. It became a way to relieve the stress of work and, in the process, I became well known at my local Starbucks. Once we found out we were having twins it became apparent we were going to have to make some serious sacrifices to be able to afford two babies instead of the one we thought we’d be getting. No vacations for the next four or five years?  I can handle that – besides we live in San Diego for cryin’ out loud! No new car? My car can make it to 200,000 miles, no problem. No more Starbucks? Okay, this could be a serious problem. However, at $3 – $4 a drink, it was getting pretty expensive so I knew that my hanging out at Starbucks days were soon to be over.

The hardest part for me is not the lack of mocha’s because I have come up with a much cheaper solution which I’ll share momentarily, but rather it is missing the experience of going to a place where everybody knows my name ( the Cheers of the non-alcoholic set), relaxing in a big comfortable chair, listening to music over the loud speakers and reading the paper. That has taken some getting used to and, I must admit, I haven’t gone cold turkey but I’m trying my best to wean myself from this expensive habit.

The coffee part, however, was easier to solve than I thought. Since I’m not a coffee snob at all and all I really want is caffeinated chocolate, I have come up with a homemade recipe that is cheap, quick, full of caffeine and, if I do say so myself, downright tasty.

Matthew’s Soon-to-be-World-Famous
“I have twins and can’t afford Starbucks”
Homemade Chocolate Mocha
  1. Using a sixteen ounce travel mug fill with two heaping teaspoons of Folgers instant coffee crystals.
  2. Add three to four heaping teaspoons of hot cocoa mix (I prefer dark chocolate).
  3. Add a tablespoon of sugar
  4. Pour hot water into mug and stir vigorously.
  5. Optional: add a splash of raspberry syrup for a little twist
  6. Top with whipped cream from the can.

Disclaimer: I will not be held responsible for the downfall of Starbucks once this recipe gets out. Enjoy at your own risk.

August 3, 2005

One more story about how lack of sleep messes with your mind

When it comes to life with twins, schedules are good. Being off schedule BAAAAAAD. Imagine how it would be when you feed one baby, burp one baby, change one baby, put one baby to bed and then have to do it all over again with baby #2 after just a few moments of rest. After a while it seems that we are feeding, burping, changing babies all… day… long.

So, the rule around here is obey the schedule. When the schedule is followed, everyone is happy. Mom is happy, Dad is happy and, for the most part, babies are happy. The only problem with schedules is that TheMonk and Swee’Pea act like they didn’t get the memo about how important these schedules are. Every now and then, one of them insists they need to eat again after just an hour and a half when clearly the schedule says they shouldn’t be hungry for another two hours. Then, when it IS time for a dual feeding, one baby wants to sleep while the other is ravenous. This is how the ugly cycle of chaotic non-schedule begins. Needless to say, we try to avoid this.

So, with this in mind, the other night at around 2:00 a.m. TheMonk starts to cry, telling us “Hey guys, I’m feeling just a tad bit hungry over here.” Yeah, right. It’s more like “HEY YOU TWO, SHAKE YOUR TAIL OVER HERE AND FEED ME BECAUSE IT’S BEEN THREE WHOLE HOURS SINCE I’VE EATEN!!! ARE YOU TRYING TO STARVE ME AROUND HERE???!!! MOVE IT, MOVE IT, MOVE IT!!” Now, when this happens we usually grab the pre-measured, already prepared bottles and scoop up a baby and go to town. This night, however, Andrea wants to breast feed TheMonk to ease some discomfort in her breasts. She grabs TheMonk and heads out to the loft to feed him. Meanwhile, I glance down at Swee’Pea, marveling at the fact that TheMonk’s eardrum piercing scream didn’t wake her. I decide, since it will take a while for TheMonk to finish eating, I can let Swee’Pea sleep a bit longer and still feed her in time to keep up the ever important schedule. (Okay, okay, I wanted some more sleep, so sue me). So, anyway, I lay down and the next thing I know Andrea is in the room handing me a baby. She says something to me. I nod and take the baby while Andrea exits the room. Andrea’s words do not register with me. I hear “Mmphysm blmsksls, I nakdkdk ajaj ajajaja.” What she in fact said, I learned later, was “Take him and change him while I go pump.”

I do not take him and change him. Instead my mind tells me that I’m supposed to be feeding a baby. I figure there’s a baby in front of me, so I better get to work. Some time goes by and Andrea returns. She looks at me, sitting in bed, half asleep feeding a baby that has already been fed and asks the obvious question, “Why are you feeding TheMonk?”

My mind starts to whirl. I’m aware of conflict – what psychologists call congnitive dissonance – and struggle to reason why I’m feeding a baby that’s already been fed. Finally, I can come up with no other answer than a feeble, “I… don’t… know.”

I get up, change TheMonk and pick up a stirring Swee’Pea. I proceed to the loft to feed her while Andrea returns to bed. Swee’Pea is very hungry at this point and sucks down her bottle in record time.

I return her to her crib and slide into bed for a few hours of sleep before I go solo at the next feeding. When I awake at 5:30 a.m. they are both ready to feed.

For the moment, the schedule is saved.

August 2, 2005

Sleep is sooooo overrated

I received a call on my cell phone from the camp coordinator at my Y at 7:00 a.m. this morning. He called to discuss a transportation-related issue that needed immediate attention. As we were winding down our conversation, he ended the call by saying, “… and I’m sorry for calling so early. I hope I didn’t wake you.”

I laughed. “Wake me!” I said. “You forget, I have two seven-week old babies at home. I’ve been up for an hour and a half!”

His comment made me realize, however, that I don’t think I’ve slept past 6:15 a.m. on any given day since the day we brought the babies home. I keep waiting for the day that they sleep through the night. It seems like every parent I talk to has a child that slept through the night starting at one week old. I keep waiting. Each night I think, maybe tonight they’ll sleep five or six hours straight.

Uh, Yeah. That hasn’t happened.

August 1, 2005

Donuts anyone?

The Atkins Diet people filed for bankruptcy today (Has there ever been a better time to use the phrase “belly up”). As I heard the news, I couldn’t help but picture the Krispy Kreme Donut execs having one helluva party.

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