Lessons for my Daughters – #2

Meri & AlexSecond in the series of imparting my life’s lessons to Meri and Alex to follow as they grow older. If you missed the first go ’round you can find it here. I think my plan is to provide a dozen items in a post. Lot’s of good things come in sets of 12… donuts, juries, days of Christmas, beers, etc.

So, without further ado…

Life Lessons for Alexandra and Meredith.

13. Your mom and dad will always love you no matter what.

14. Search out belly laughs. Laugh so hard you can’t breathe. It’s good for you.
I’m not going to tell you that “laughter is the best medicine” because chances are, you know, medicine is the best medicine… However, if you laugh I guarantee you will feel better. If you laugh so long and hard that your stomach muscles hurt, even better. I can still remember times in my life where I laughed so hard I thought I would pee my pants. Those are some of life’s best times.

15. There are 2 types of people in this world. Those who return shopping carts to the proper location and those who don’t. Always return your cart.

16. Our rules exist for a reason, even if you can’t currently understand why.
Your mother and I will not invent arbitrary rules for you. There will always be a reason. Those reasons will usually fall into one of 3 categories: 1.) For your health and safety. 2.) For familial harmony or 3.) To make you a better more responsible adult.

17. Make your own money. Pay your own way.
If you are secure financially on your own, nobody can hold anything over your head.

18. Let sleeping Dads lie.

19. Bees don’t really want to sting you. Don’t be afraid of them. They give us vegetables and flowers.
Wasps on the other hand…

20. Having the right tool for the job always makes everything easier.
Trying to replace a screw with a butterknife will drive you insane and make things 10 times harder than they need to be. It took me a long time, a lot of frustration and gouged fingers before I learned this.

21. If you communicate on whatever technology exists, please at least attempt to spell words correctly.
If I see you writing, “thx 4 riteing me cuz ur 2 kool!!!” I will lose my mind.

22. There were only 3 Star Wars movies ever made.
Someone someday will try to tell you that there are actually 6, but they’re trying to fool you. Just believe me on this.

23. Courage is not the lack of fear, it is acting in spite of it. – Mark Twain
It’s ok to be afraid. Everyone get’s afraid, even if they don’t show it. Don’t let fear keep you from doing anything you want to do.

24. If you’re reading this, call your mother. She misses you.


You both are about to turn 7 months old. Never thought we’d survive this long but we’ve made it. You girls are even sleeping better now. Your mother and I are very thankful for that. I hope I didn’t just jinx us. One of my favorite parts of my day is when you’ve finished your bottle, and are settling in to fall asleep in my lap in the recliner. In your room, nice and dark, you swaddled up and giving in to sleep. Thank you for that.

In 3 weeks we begin our grand adventure taking you to Pittsburgh. Still not sure what to expect, except like I said… an adventure. Your family back there could NOT be more excited to meet you.

Until next time.



My First Father’s Day

Now that I’m in the club, I get to have one more day of celebration a year. Of course, 6-month olds don’t really subscribe to this philosophy. Here’s what my day was like.

Jess said that she would get up with the girls and let me sleep in on my day. Hey! That’s about as good a gift as one could want! Unfortunately, some other people in our house didn’t think that was such a good idea. So, when the girls started squawking around 5:30am, Jess rolled out of bed to deal with them. On a normal day, the girls will usually quiet down once someone gets up to acknowledge them and get them out of bed. This day, not so much. One, and/or both of them decided that they wanted to cry/scream/shout. I laid in bed and tried to block it out, unsuccessfully. First problem was the baby monitor was still on, so it sounded like they were in the room with me. I rolled over to Jess’s side of the bed to kill it, but by then I was mostly awake. I stayed in bed and tried to force myself back to sleep, but I could still hear the cacophony from the next room.

Eventually, Jess gave up and brought the girls into bed with me and we started the day.

After some goofing around trying to keep the girls distracted and not crying Jess brought in my card and gift. Oh yeah… I nearly forgot. In addition to a great card, Jess got me a sweet video camera. Now we can shoot real video of the girls as they grow. It will definitely be fun to play with going forward. Thanks again, babe.

And with that, we started the day. We all got out of bed and got going. Jess said she had designs on making me breakfast, but Alex and Meri weren’t really into sitting quietly by themselves this fine day. I told her to not worry about it and had leftover cake and a cup of coffee for breakfast. Works for me.

My other gift for the day was not having to change a single diaper, which was also pretty sweet. So, as I entertained 1, Jess took the other to get changed and dressed for the day. Swap and do it again.

Time to feed them and figure out what we were going to do for the day. Like I said, the girls were extra fussy, so we knew we had to get them in the car at some point and go somewhere. They will usually sleep in the car (unless it’s 5pm and we’re coming home from daycare. That is a guaranteed cry-fest, but that’s a story for another time). Jess asked if we maybe wanted to drive out to the Birds of Prey area, but that seemed like a long ways to go. So, instead I suggested we go to Costco. So, we loaded up the car and left the house about 9:30am. Sounds early, but I’d already been awake for 3 hours…

The girls are usually really good at stores, and this was no different. They just chill out in their car seats in the Snap-N-Go stroller as we get to do some shopping. This time around we did get some fun stuff… some 8gig SD cards for the camera(s)… a new digital weather station deal… a new pair of shorts. We also got some not so fun things like diapers. I don’t know if you’ve ever been to the Nampa Costco at 10am on a Father’s Day Sunday but it’s nice. The place was pretty empty. Unfortunately, we got there before they got most of the samples up. Oh well.

Two Hundred bucks lighter it was time to go. We get home and try to feed the girls again and then take turns distracting them so we can eat lunch. Then it came time for naps.

For some reason, these girls are horrible nappers. They don’t want to sleep, and when they do, it’s never for longer than an hour. It is usually a battle with them, which isn’t fun. This day, it was an even bigger battle. We tried to swaddle and bottle them and put them down, but they were not having any of it. Both of them were just fighting the whole process and driving Jess and I nuts. Aggravation. So, we abandoned the nap idea and put them in the jumperoos to burn off some more energy. An hour later, we tried again. They’ve got to nap or we’re in for a world of hurt later. We swaddle them back up and try to rock them to sleep. After 30 minutes, they have apparently fallen asleep, so we put them in their crib. Not 5 minutes later, the screaming begins again. *sigh* Back to the rocker and try again. Alex was NOT having it. She was making me crazy by being so stubborn. You could tell she was exhausted but would just not sleep.

Eventually, I’d grown weary of it and instead loaded her into her car seat. We were going for a drive. Jess stayed behind with Meri, who was asleep in her arms and I hit the road. From our house at Chinden & Meridian roads, I went to Ten Mile, then down to the freeway. By the time I got to the freeway, Alex was asleep. So, I drove the freeway all the way to the outlet mall exit, then back up the freeway to the Idaho Center exit in Nampa and up to Chinden and back home. Almost an hour in all. Worth it, just for her to sleep.

When I got home, Meri slept for about 5 more minutes until she was awake. Ok… it’s bath time. We bathe them one at a time and then try derail fussiness and get some food into them. As Jess shoveled peas into them, I decided I needed a cocktail. So I made myself a vodka tonic and a gin & tonic for Jess. We then got them changed and dressed and it was time to head to my parent’s house for a combination Birthday, Father’s Day and Birthday celebration. It was my Dad’s birthday on Saturday and Jess’s birthday on Tuesday, so we were rolling all 3 into one big event. Since it was my day, we dressed them in matching Boise State blue and orange denim overalls things. Really, those things are more of a pain in the ass then their worth. Not very flexible. Tough to keep them on. The girls just chew on the straps and buckles. But, they looked cute. I think we got some good pictures.

Dinner was great. Even better was there were other hands to occupy my children for a little while. They can be exhausting. After dinner and gifts and dessert, the girls started to lose it (even more) so it was time to head home.

Upon getting home we immediately made a couple bottles of formula and changed and swaddled the girls. Fed and rocked, they fell asleep in about 30 minutes, which is pretty good. Apart from Alex waking up in a screaming fit about 20 minutes later (gas bubble) they were down.

Jess and I collapsed into bed about 9:30pm.


All in all, I know I’ve had worse days, even with the girls being difficult. Thanks for everything Jess. One things for sure, no two Father’s Days will ever be alike from here on out!

Twin Pix – May ’11

I know I owe you all pictures from the girlies 5 month photo shoot… and for that matter the 6 month photo shoot which has yet to take place. Watch this space for those images coming soon.

Instead, enjoy these pics I’ve take over the past month, May 2011.

As always, there are more pics on Flickr than are posted here. Go view them all.


Meri & Alex

Is it just me, or can you practically see what Alex will look like when she’s an adult in this picture?



Meri & Alex

She loves those prunes

Trying out our new shades

The Family

More to come.