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Showing posts from June, 2007

The Heat of the Moment

I've said before how I rarely get a whole weekend off. Well, this weekend is one of those rare occasions, so what did we do today? Stayed inside and straightened the house! Eldest is still under the weather, though his fever is down under 100 but his throat still hurts a little (and he didn't like the throat spray, saying it was "spicy" -- I admit it, I got it not at a pharmacy but a Thai restaurant). It was also hot today, really hot, around 100. It's supposed to be like this for a few days, too. Anyway, it was the perfect combination for an inside day. Lori got really focused on some minor projects, I got all the laundry put away and played video games with Eldest. The temperature finally dropped, and I'm typing this post outside. After wrapping this up, I'm going to water the lawn and look forward to another blistering day, more likely out and about, depending how Eldest feels and how much shade we can find.

Fever pitch

We were going to go to the pool Friday morning. We had made plans with the mom of a girl from Eldest's pre-preschool class (a 3-year-old girl, by the way, who has told her mom she was going to marry Eldest! That's my boy!) to meet their family late morning. Eldest was excited to go, as usual, and was in a good mood. I started getting Littlest ready, and by the time I got his trunks on and applied sunblock, Eldest was out of commission, almost asleep, running a fever.

The amazing thing was that not 5 minutes earlier, Eldest looked fine. It hit that quick. The evening before, he complained his mouth hurt, but he was only pointing at his mouth, what I realized this morning was that it was his throat that hurt. I now was suspecting strep after he pointed at his mouth again and realized he hadn't eaten much over the last 18 hours. I checked his temperature -- 103 on the first reading. That's warm. After some Tylenol, it did drop to about 100-101, but he still wasn't in a…

My little runaway

Eldest got me really pissed today, at Wild Oats of all places (of course, it was a totally natural anger, with no hydrogenated oils). Every other Wednesday is my big shopping day, and aside from Wal-Mart and Costco, today I hit Wild Oats with both boys. There is a little play area which we went to first, when Eldest says he needs to go pee-pee. I say fine, and try putting Littlest into the cart, then notice the straps to keep him in there are broken. We walk back to get a new cart, I'm trying to get Littlest in, when, for whatever reason I'm not sure, Eldest takes off through produce.

I'm not sure where he was intending to go -- I don't think it was the play area again. I saw him running but couldn't keep up, with the cart and other shoppers in the way, but I tried a different aisle to cut him off ... except he never emerged where I thought he was going to. Now I'm starting to get a little nervous. After about a minute, we found each other, he was wondering wher…

No Sleep 'til Brooklyn

I have a fun sleep pattern.

A couple nights a week, I work until midnight, come home, need at least an hour to unwind, then finally get to sleep. Some mornings I sleep later, some mornings I wake up early and try to sneak a nap during the day.

The other nights of the week, I'm home. Theoretically, it should be easy for me to get to bed early, get eight hours of sleep, be refreshed the next morning and the next day.

Not quite. I still find it difficult to go to sleep before 11 on my nights off. This was the case before I went part-time -- I couldn't get off the late-night routine. I thought it would be easier to flip it the other way, but after almost six months, that hasn't happened.

There are some mitigating factors -- I do sometimes get sucked into whatever I was doing before 10:30 p.m. Like tonight -- I took the first season of "Murder One" out of the library and watched a couple episodes tonight. At least I try multitasking, like updating this blog, for example, …

How Swede it is

Sundays are our one whole weekend day off together, so we try to not just lugs. We didn't make it to the pool today, or got out into the summer heat that much, but we did have an adventurous few hours at ... IKEA!

I slept late this morning, then Littlest took an uncharacteristic 2-hour nap. As a result, the four of us didn't get out until about 2. We had been going to the pool every Sunday, but skipped it in favor of the IKEA trip. This store just opened last month, and we hadn't made it there yet despite Wife's love of the store.

It was worth the trip.

We didn't buy much, just some hooks and an inexpensive kids play tent for the boys. But just the spectacle of the store (I hadn't been to one in years) was something to behold, even Eldest liked it. We got something to eat at the cafe (Swedish meatballs for the parents, mac and cheese for the kids that Littlest was devouring), looked at bunk beds (no rush, just for the future), and pondered future design decisions …

Down at the Sunset Grill

(Transcribed from a notebook, I hope I can read my writing :)

A year ago on the first day of summer, I drove to a park near our house that had a clear view of the sunset on the longest day of the year. I sat and wrote, keeping an eye on the setting sun. I wrote about how fickle summer can be for adults. For kids, the first day of summer, the actual summer solstice (not the last day of school) means little, because there still are several weeks before the realization actually hits that summer will end (about Aug. 7 is a good realization point). But for adults, at least for me, the first day of summer means you made it to the top of the mountain -- and it's all downhill from here. The days will get shorter, the weather eventually cooler, that perseverance to make it through all those dreary months paid off, only to face it all again. Seasonally, summer really gets going on the solstice, but also reminds us it will end. I don't know if other people feel this too -- maybe is hits t…

Stuffy and gruffy

I hate being inside on summer afternoons, but alas, that's what the boys and I have mostly done for two days now. I caught either a weird cold or a sinus infection, and though it's not so bad, it's knocked me out enough (the cold medication isn't helping my energy level) that it hasn't been the two most productive days. I'm not totally out of it though, we did get out for a drive up a canyon with the intention of going for a little walk (the boys fell asleep before we could get them out of the car, however), then grilled some burgers when we got home. And I am outside tonight typing this -- hurray for extension cords (the battery on this laptop is barely working) -- and I'm going to water the lawn after.

These ho-hum summer days drive me bananas, because there are only so many summer days per year, but these just-annoying-enough-to-alter-your-day-but-otherwise-not-too-bad colds piss me off as well. I'm left with not quite enough energy to chase the boys …

Admiral Halsey notified me

What's the point of a stay-at-home-dad's blog if not to post the occasional cute story of his kids?

Let me explain my Saturday first. Usually, I don't get Saturdays off; rarely, I get a whole weekend. This weekend is the exception, and over Father's Day, too. We accompanied Eldest to one of his friend's birthday party in the afternoon, and he had a lot of fun (firefighters from the local fire department came to the party, let the kids explore the truck a little, then turned on a hose for them). We came back home and tried to relax, but discovered we had two crabby kids who needed naps. We decided to drive out to this burger/ice cream place about 45 minutes away that had a train theme. Thankfully, both boys fell asleep on the way. After a nice though slightly chaotic dinner (Eldest was fascinated by the trains, of course; Littlest ate almost a whole grilled cheese), we headed out of the mountains back home.

Now, Eldest didn't want to go and threw a little fit, so …

Dive dive dive

Two milestones from the offspring today. First, Littlest took three steps this morning. He has been standing, crouching from a standing position (without sitting down), doing this bear walk that looks more difficult than actual walking, but no steps beyond one falling forward. But today, I stood him up, tried to get him to walk to me, and before he realized what he was doing (he was a little crabby at the time), he took a few steps. Even Eldest noticed it and exclaimed "He's walking!" Littlest took two steps later on. Just a matter of time before he gets it down pat, then he starts running, then my life gets more difficult. Make no mistake, I can't wait for him to walk, it's just the aftermath that is sometimes overrated.

Second milestone: Eldest jumped off the diving board at the pool. Just a low dive, Wife was waiting in the water to guide him to the side (not to catch him, either -- just to make sure he remembered he could swim over to the side), and it was mor…

This place is a dump

Note: Contains fecal issues that some non-parents may find unsettling. Read at your own risk.

We are on our last push to get Eldest potty-trained. He's come a long way, going pee in the toilet without us even prompting him and not going in his underpants that we let him wear sometimes, when we know there isn't a big poop coming (and even in his Pull-Up diaper, he'll use the toilet too). We're proud of him and what he's accomplished -- he's even starting to pee when he wakes up in the morning. Today, however, the poop hit the fan.

He's been reluctant to sit on the potty and go poop. We ask him if he has to go, and he says he doesn't. We ask him if he wants to try, and he says very loudly "No, I don't have to go poop!" Even the sticker bribery doesn't work on this end (no pun intended) -- he has a sticker board that we've told him if he fills up, we'll by him a big toy (the thinking being, if he fills it up, he's potty-trained …

Brrr, it's cold in here

Wednesday was frosty for June 6 in Utah. How chilly? Low 50s, rained all day, like Good Friday in the Midwest. So we were inside most of the day, and after getting outside every day as part of the warm-weather routine, being cooped up wasn't fun. Tried to getting some cleaning done, and though to a certain extent I was able to, it wasn't easy when the boys wanted to play when I wanted to work. I'm sure I wasn't the only parent going stir crazy today.

Thursday should be interesting, as the weather will be the same and there is nothing planned (the boys' swim lesson was canceled in advance of the sucky weather. We'll definitely get out, maybe the dinosaur museum I didn't want to venture to today. If the weather stays bad into Friday, we already have a children's museum play date set.

When the temp here gets over 100 later in the summer, somebody tell me why I didn't like today.

Carry a tune

I had this idea a couple days ago to write about my favorite summer songs. I don't mean songs about summer, necessarily, but songs that were big hits in summers past. Having been a Top 40 geek through the '80s, and having so many songs able to transport me back to a specific time of my life, coming up with this list should have been easy, but it was a little trickier than I anticipated. Many songs that do take me back aren't necessarily my absolute favorites -- "Every Breath You Take" by The Police was a monster hit in the summer of 1983, does remind me of that time, yet, I've never really liked the song.

So I had been contemplating my favorite summer songs when I turn VH1 Classic and see ... the top summer songs of all-time. Hosted by original MTV veejay Mark Goodman (who by the way is looking way old, though not quite Kurt Loder old yet), it was purely the best summer-themed songs, including "Vacation", "Boys of Summer" and "Summer o…

Agent 86

I have rejoiced how my life is getting back to normal (at least for for me in SAHD mode) starting this week, with five consecutive days off. I did that math and figured from the time I woke up this morning to when I go back to work will span 126 hours. Take out 40 for the estimated time I will sleep, and it comes out to 86 waking hours this week. I want to make the most of those 86 hours, meaning better eating, little napping (for me, not the boys), getting more things done around the house, less random TV watching, and simply enjoying the new summer. And so far, so good. Today, we went for a nice walk, took the boys to the pool, got a little stuff done around the house and grilled some burgers. Got to sit on the porch in the evening, listen to my iPod and peruse the Baseball Encyclopedia. It was a good Sunday. Seventy-four hours to go.

Seems like yesterday, but it was long ago

One of my favorite songs is Bob Seger's "Against the Wind." Being somewhat overly nostalgic, it's always resonated with me, even when I was a teenager. In 1984, we were on a weekend trip at a resort in Wisconsin (a longer story for another post), and I was incredibly bored and listened to the only tape I brought for my Walkman over and over, just songs taped off the radio. One of the songs was "Against the Wind" and somehow, only at 13, I recognized the reflection the lyrics invoke, of being young and taking life head on, growing up in a blink of an eye and being wiser yet a little sad. Of course, just about every Bog Seger song is about that same theme ("Beautiful Loser," "Like a Rock", "Night Moves", "Roll Me Away," you can even make a case for "Old Time Rock 'n' Roll"), but this one always stuck with me.

Another reason I like "Against the Wind" so much — the line: "Those drifter days…