DAY 354: Quiet Down Big Person!!!

No shizznit, Jake has completely evolved into an entirely different monkey over the last month. He is so cognizant of his surroundings and actually learning to communicate in his own small way. When it’s bedtime, (meaning booby time) he stops playing and points to the nursing pillow or the sound machine. Smart boy.
Speaking of communication… I know it may get old at some point, like when he’s saying it 100 times a day, but when I hear him blurt out Mama or Dada, my heart turns into a little bowl of Jello. You love your kid from day one, right? But when things really start to click, and that little snuggle-rat buries his head into your shoulder as you rock him to sleep, wow…
If I haven’t seen Jake all day, I notice myself walking a little heavier past his door, or “accidentally” coughing as I skip past. I hate to wake the boy, but Dada just wants to say “Hi Little Buddy”:)


Our baby is a little Fred Durst of Limp Bizkit! He never stops look for something to break! Honestly, all are babies this way?

You could place Jake in the middle of a room full of toys. He will immediately crawl straight over or around the bright, shiny play things and go directly to an electrical cord plugged into the wall socket. Pull him away from that, he heads straight for a coffee table covered with remotes. Yank him off that, and he’s trying to cram his fingers into a door jamb. Save him from getting pinched, and he heads for and end table with picture frames on top. I know he’s bound to encounter some bumps and bruises, but Jesus! Are we supposed to bolt everything to the floor, and put everything we own in storage until he’s in grade school!?

Where do you find balance between letting him “figure things out”, and driving yourself insane? My job is one that immerses you in a strict safety culture. So when I look around a room, my brain is constantly scanning…I see every sharp thing, head-knocker, and hazard you can think of. Obviously, that’s maddening when you’re chasing a roving destroyer. If it stinks, sparks, or shatters, this kid’s going for it!!!

Where’s the middle ground? Help me out you experienced parents!!!

DAY 352: Holy Sh!t, the Clock is Ticking!!!

I just want something new to chew on.

Man, I swear there is just never enough time to do all the things you need (and want) to do! Jake’s party is only weeks away, with Christmas right behind it. The list keeps getting longer as the days get shorter. Decorations, the planning, the shopping, blah blah blah… I know it will all work out. Although I must admit, scrapping it all and just getting him a gift card is sounding better and better all the time:)

DAY 351: Mama, Is Daddy Preggers?

We have not stopped eating since Thursday! Today we had Thanksgiving dinner on my side of the family. Once again, I ate so much I think my butt-hole is going to turn inside-out!

Jake had meat for the first time. Delicious white-meat turkey. It seemed to have the same effect on him as it does big people. He took a huge crap and went straight to bed.

When my wife was called to work at the beginning of the week, I was really disappointed. We had so many plans. And, I was dreading taking care of Jake all by myself for three whole days. Looking back now, I’m so glad it happened the way it did. There is a noticeable change in the bond between Jake and I.  Today he plucked his pacifier from his mouth and tried to jam it in mine as he said “Dah-duh”. It makes my heart go pitter-patter:)

DAY 350: Look out Dad, You’re Gonna CRASH!

I must apologize, I’m actually a day behind on this post. Yesterday was fast and furious! I think the week finally caught up with me last night. The last few nights of very little sleep, mixed with the GO,GO,GO every day culminated in me passing out and sleeping for 12 hours! I am so thankful that Mama J took over and just let me sleep. It was the best belated present ever! I think Jakey was feeling it too. He’s been snoozing away for the last three hours! A nice little day of catching up. And we needed it. Thanksgiving Part 2 begins at 4pm!

I got this Dad! Take a nap!

DAY 349: This Turkey Turns 38 Today!

What a cool coincidence that my birthday falls on turkey day this year! It’s been a great day so far. Mama’s home. She made me a fat key lime cheesecake. I had a huge dinner with one side of the family. Part two continues Saturday. Now, a little relaxing in prep for some midnight shopping.

I could list what I’m thankful for, but I’d be here all night. And today is one that I don’t want to waste in front of the computer. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

DAY 348: Rules For This Dad to Live By (Stolen From All You Moms:)

Jake and I are almost through day three of 24/7 Daddy detail. It didn’t take long to figure out how to be an effective Dad, while effectively NOT driving myself insane, nor neglecting the little man’s needs. I became really responsible, REALLY fast. Here are a few of my new rules for Daddyhood…

1: Be proactive. As soon as Jake passes out, it’s go time. And time is of the essence, so you have to move swiftly. I prepare his next meal and start thawing his milk for the next bottle. I do all the dishes from his previous feast. I prep his clothes or bath, whatever the next phase calls for. I’m totally reset and ready to go for the next round. Then it’s “me time”.

2: Lose all sense of selfishness. It’s all about the baby during their waking hours. So find ways to manage priorities and incorporate his/her playtime in with your own goals and to-do’s. Today, Jake played in his bouncy seat and playpen while I cleaned the house. Which leads to my next rule…

3. Be ready to put your personal to-do list on the back-burner. If you don’t, you’re only setting yourself up for frustration. On day one, I accomplished almost nothing but the essentials after my wife left. On day two, I was able to fix the bathroom exhaust fan and do a little pube groomin’. (Did I just type that out loud?;) Jake and I also managed to do some shopping. By noon today, we’d already fed the horsey, cleaned the house, and did three loads of laundry. We’re becoming a little multi-tasking team, and it’s only day three!

4: Last but not least, take care of yourself! If you’re tired, sleep when the baby sleeps. Your to-do list will still be there when you wake up. It’s also easy to skip a meal if you’re not careful, so dine together! And most importantly, don’t skip showers! It’s easy to become smelly and exhausted if you don’t take a few minutes for yourself during their nappy times. No one likes a grumpy, stinky bastard!

All of these things seem like common sense. But without establishing a plan and a routine, you are bound to get all jammed up! This all goes without saying, don’t forget to ENJOY it! This has been the most time I’ve gotten to spend with Jake since the first few weeks after  he was born.

I am by no means a master at parenting, but I try to learn something new each day and apply it in the future. What have I learned in the last few days? That the only thing I was afraid of was the unknown. Would I be able to care for Jake all by myself? I think I answered my own question:)

DAY 347: Until You’ve Walked a Mile in Someones’s Shoes…

My wife and I are a great team when it comes to taking care of Jake. Obviously, she does the majority of it, but we each have our own skill sets when it comes to parenting. She’s good at everything. And I can get Jake to make fart noises on command.

This week the inevitable happened…Mama J was called away to work for THREE DAYS AND NIGHTS! I always knew it was possible, and I’ve been secretly…OK, openly dreading it for quite some time. When she got the call, I started reviewing my choices. 1: Drop to my my knees sobbing and claim insanity. 2: Throw myself down the stairs and hope something snapped. 3: Cowboy up and be the Super Dad I know I can be! I chose number 3.

I’m half way through day two, and I must say, Jake has been a complete…ANGEL! There was a moment yesterday when I almost called Mama, begging her to come home. Jake went into meltdown mode before his afternoon nap. He was in a panic, crying “Ma-MUH, Ma-Muh!!!” I knew he wasn’t hungry, so I reverted to my early Daddy method of “The Five S’s”. I can only remember three, so I threw up a “Hail Mary”. Side, sway, and shoosh! I call it my “sleeper hold”. And just like old times, Jake was snoring in my arms in minutes! I knew then that everything was going to be OK.

Since then, we’ve been enjoying the total Father/Son experience. I needed to buy groceries for Thanksgibbins, so I thought I’d take him to epicenter of American culture, WalMart! Next, a stop at the baby Mecca, Babies R Us! Jake was a little gentleman, smiling and waving at the elderly and the mullet-headed. I was so proud.
The experience has been amazing. Now I’ve had the chance to witness all the things I’ve only heard about. The way Jake is extra snuggly when you feed him in the middle of the night. How quickly he learns to mimic the things you do like playing the drums on the steering wheel. And his immense mid-morning donkey craps! 
I’m not sure what he and I will do tomorrow? All I know is, Mama’s coming home!!! I’ve said thank you many times before, but I never really appreciated all the work she does until I was forced to do it myself. The good news is, I’m not so scared anymore. Because, wouldn’t you know it? I’m pretty F@$king good at being a Dad:)

DAY 346: A Little Fatherly Advice (Happy Birthday Dad!)

Any guy can be a Dad. There are some good and some bad. You can learn a lot about being a Dad by reading some books, and watching some DVD’s on parenting. There are plenty of websites out there that will give you advice and opinions. You can figure out how to give your kid a bottle or how to run them a bath. Although there are some things about being a Dad that you can only get from one source…Your own Dad.

My Dad showed me how to raise a kid. He taught me how to be resourceful and provide for my family. He taught me the value of hard work. He taught how to respect and treat people, no matter their situation or status. He taught me how to be kind and generous. He is the source of my sense of humor. He showed me how to look the worst of adversities in the face and deal with them gracefully. And most importantly, he was fair and understanding when I made mistakes. And I made a few…

Smearing my younger neighbor’s face with mulberries and turning him purple for a week. Having a water fight in our brand new kitchen and drowning the carpeting with water. Blowing up a paint can in my closet with a BB gun. Shattering numerous windows with baseballs. Sneaking out. Trashing cars. Skateboards through the wall. You name it.

I gave him plenty of reasons to strangle me. But he didn’t. And because of him, I’ll know how to react when Jake spray paints his name across the garage door.

I am who I am because of my parents. I know if my Mom was still here, she would be so proud of all of us.

Today I just want my Dad to know what he means to me. And I do everything I can to make sure Jake will feel the same about me.

Happy Birthday Dad! We love you!!!

DAY 345: My Holiday Boner Just Went Flacid!

This is probably my favorite week of the year! I’m on vacation! Holiday season kickoff, Black Wednesday, turkey day, my birthday, Christmas shopping, the hustle and bustle… I love it all!

I was looking forward to a week full of fun, family, and maybe a little birthday boozin’! I get home from work (after an 84 hour week)… Jake has his first cold and Mama J may have to leave town for a few days!

I went from completely elated to slightly deflated. You could say that my “holiday boner” went completely limp! But as always, we will make the best of this situation. I just hope Jakey feels better ASAP!

Cuz, if Mama leaves town, we’re going to our first strip joint…I mean Christmas tree silent auction on Wednesday. Wink wink:)

I want my boner back!!!