December 24, 2011

Jingle Bells, The Baby Smells…

Merry Christmas, everyone! May your holiday season be filled with love, friendship and lots of chocolate. From our family, to yours, have a very happy holiday.

I used to write a blog
About Swee’Pea & TheMonk
But then came #3
And now they’re in a funk, Boo Hoo Hoo
But Santa’s on his way
So we are being good
We tell Santa we love our sis
We’re just misunderstood!
Oh, Jingle Bells, The Baby Smells
But she’s here to stay
She only sleeps, eats and poops
But we love her anyway, hey!
At least three times a week
The baby cries at night
I haven’t slept a full 8 hours
And now I’m quite a sight
But they say this soon shall pass
When she’s not quite so new
Yes I’m tired, but it’s ok
At least it isn’t two!

August 29, 2011

Relationship Building

I take you from your mother as the sun begins to set in the West. Your brother and sister are in bed and now it is your turn.

I have a bottle of the finest milk, freshly pumped from your mother, and I have the iPod docking station gently streaming lullabies. I carry you into the room and sit on the bed and position you in my arms. I marvel at your eyes and cheeks and as we gaze into each others eyes, I am reminded just how much I love you. I smile and, this is new, you smile back. Your smile swells my heart and I hold you closer and kiss your soft, downy head.

At this point, as the room darkens and the music softly fills the room, I pick up the bottle and get ready to begin our bedtime routine in earnest. You are not yet aware that this is about to transpire. I can tell because you haven’t begun your part of the routine yet. But I know it’s coming.

I smile and bring the bottle to your tiny lips, ready to feed you into a restful slumber. It is then that I see the look of recognition in your eyes. You realize that it’s bed time and, as if on cue, you begin your part of the routine…


Ah, yes. It wouldn’t be bedtime if we didn’t play the “Let’s scream in Daddy’s arms until I fall asleep” routine.

June 23, 2011

They eat, sleep and…

She is less than a week old. Her chubby cheeks and cute button nose are in-your-face perfection. I gaze into her dark eyes and she stares back. Her mouth forms small O’s in a primal rooting reflex and, to this Daddy, I imagine she’s blowing me kisses. I am sitting in my back, supported by pillows, in a half-way-done situp position. She sits on my tummy as she rests against my raised knees. I hold her little hands in mine and enjoy being together for the first time.

As we share a moment together, alone – just father and daughter – I begin to tell her how much I love her. “I have known you all my life.” I tell her. “You have been in my heart and I’ve just been waiting to meet you in person.” I marvel at her fragility and wonder at the personality that is waiting to emerge.

I continue to tell her my hopes and dreams and as she stares at me, I feel that we are forming a close bond that will continue a lifetime. “I will be the best Daddy I can for you. I’ll give you kisses and hugs, words of encouragement, moments of discipline, and most of all, love.”

As I gaze into her eyes, I feel like she is understanding what I am trying to convey. In the waning moments of the day as dusk envelopes the room, my eyes fill with tears as I smile at this wonderful little girl sitting on my lap.

Suddenly, she looks at me and smiles back. My heart leaps and I laugh out loud at her smile at such a young age. I know that she understands and her smile is proof. I revel in this special moment between daughter and father. It’s a moment I’ll never forget.

And that’s when she pooped with a force of class five hurricane, spewing yellow baby poop out of her newborn diapers and all over my shirt. She lets out a little cry and I am suddenly left with a feeling of warmth in my stomach that is in sharp contrast to the inner warmth I felt just moments ago.

That smile? Yeah, I’m thinking it was gas.

Maybe the bonding will take a bit longer.

June 10, 2011

Final Countdown Second Time Around

Almost exactly six years ago, I was about to become a father for the first time. With twins. I was scared of the unknown and how being a parent would affect my life. Would I be a good father? Was I ready to do this? How do you know how to take care of a baby – or in our case, two babies?! I can’t speak for my wife but I think we both felt a little of that and by keeping busy preparing for two little ones’ arrival, may have helped us keep the fear to a manageable level.

As I type this, my beautiful wife is in the beginning stages of labor. I’m sure she’s going to do great because she generally does great at anything that matters. I’m also struck by how calm I feel. It’s like being recalled to the Majors vs. being promoted for the first time. I’ve been there before. I know what to expect. And one baby? Please. Piece of cake.

I can already tell how the second child (in our case, third child) turns out so differently, many times, from the first. As parents we do things differently. First, we have older kids that need attention too. Second, we know that certain death does not lurk around every dropped binky or every dust bunny. We relax a little bit and, many times, the child ends up a bit more relaxed as well.

It will be interesting to see how this little one turns out. Will she be the same well-mannered child that Swee’Pea and TheMonk have been so far? Or will she be hell on wheels? Will she be more sweet and more spicy? Will she forever alter our lives in ways that we hadn’t imagined? Will that be a good thing? A bad thing?

Damn. Now I’m scared again.

Stay tuned…

May 22, 2011

You don’t know me

Hi Little One,

You’ll be here in less than three weeks.

Three weeks?! It’s going to fly by, I know. And before you come, I wanted to let you know that I’m really looking forward to you being a part of our family. And before you join us, before you meet me, I wanted to let you know a little bit about me.

I take this fatherhood thing pretty seriously. I feel like it’s my job to make sure you grow up to be a confident, caring, respectful person. I will encourage, love, listen and speak with you. But I will also say no when you really want me to say yes. I feel like it’s my job to raise adults, not children.

Having said that, we’re gonna have fun, Little One. I like to sing out loud (much to everyone’s chagrin), dance like nobody’s watching, color on a rainy Sunday, tickle and blow raspberries and have pillow fights. I’ll sometimes let you eat whipped cream right from the can, throw in chocolate chips into your pancakes or cap a hot Summer’s day at the local frozen yogurt shop. I like to braid hair, snuggle while watching cartoons, read bedtime stories and kiss you gently on your cheek after you’ve fallen asleep.

Now, I’m not perfect. I get grumpy when I’m tired or hungry. I don’t like being late and I’d rather go to the dentist than balance my checkbook.

But no one will love you more than I, Little One. I promise you that.

See you in a few weeks.


May 15, 2011


The past six years have been pretty damn amazing.

The first year, when everything seemed overwhelming and the twins made our lives all about them, I thought I’d never want to go down that road again. The lack of sleep, the irritability, the lack of sleep, the way breastfeeding ruled our lives, the lack of sleep…

There was no way I was going to do that again. But then things started to get easier. I got to sleep a bit more (although I still have not slept past 6:30 a.m. in six years), the kids became more self-sufficient and I began to realize that this could be it. The kids would be 1/3 grown up and I’d be wondering where the time went.

So we began to talk about having another one. The pros and cons were weighed. And the pros were overwhelmingly better than the one con – could we afford another one? In the end, we realized that we wanted another baby and sacrificing monetarily would be worth it.

And just like that, we were pregnant again (my wife is more fertile than than the Amazon rain forest). And while the pregnancy has been happening, I’ve had other things competing for my attention – specifically, opening a brand new YMCA four weeks ago. But now there is no doubt that a baby is coming. Week 36 has arrived and the little one could choose to join us anytime in the next month or so. It’s exciting but… different too.

I don’t have the anxiety that I felt the last time. The unknowns are now better known. I’m a veteran father now and not the rookie I was just six years ago when I was thrust into the part without really knowing what to do or what was expected.

Now I know. At least, I have a better understanding. I know I will be there to change diapers, blow raspberries on bellies and give warm baths. I know I’ll be there to hold a sleeping baby on my belly in the quiet morning. And I know I’ll be there to guide and protect and love.

Fatherhood has revealed itself to me and, I’d like to think, I’m pretty good at it. Maybe this time the new one won’t have to be patient for me to figure this fatherhood thing out. Maybe this time I’ll be able to focus on one baby rather than two and give her the attention she wants or needs. Maybe this time I’ll know that a little dirt won’t kill and exposing her to other people will help her be more social. Maybe this time I’ll be able to run into a Starbucks with a baby on my hip rather than two babies in a stroller. Maybe this time I’ll get more sleep.

Okay, probably not the sleep thing. But all the other stuff? We’re gonna rock it this time around.

I’m ready when you are little one.


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