1 day, 1 month, 2 months…

Here’s the story…. Sarah is out of town and she’s got the camera with her. So, I can’t tag and upload the pictures of Tyler at the pumpkin patch. Since I’ve got no photos to back it up, I can’t blog about it.

Here’s more of the story… Sarah is out of town and she’s got the CD that has some of the most awesome pictures of Tyler, EVER. So, I can’t tag and upload them. So I can’t blog about that either.

Here’s even more of the story… I’ve been waiting to post some photos. These are the photos that we got taken of Tyler at the studio for his “One day old”, “One month old”, and “Two months old” birthdays. I’ve been waiting for Sarah to mail them out to family before unleashing them upon the world, but I’m tired of waiting for it to happen, so I’m going to post an overload of cuteness.

Cuteness attack, BEGIN!!!

One Day Old:

One Month Old:

Two Months Old: This first picture is the picture we entered for the Cutest Baby Contest, that he SOMEHOW lost

Tyler’s Three-Month-Old pictures are already taken. They just haven’t been picked up yet. That’s happening today when he goes in for his Four Months Old pictures. I’ll post them as I get ’em, folks.

Cuteness Attack is complete…. for now…


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Tyler held onto his own bottle
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Tyler had his 4 month wellness checkup today. The purpose was to weigh him, measure him, and answer any questions that we had. Unfortunately, I had a pretty full day today and couldn’t make it. Instead, Sarah had to call me and update me on how it went when it was over with.

As of today, Tyler weighs 20 pounds and 10 ounces, and measures at 27.5 inches tall… or roughly the size of a 9-month old. Our family doctor actually asked Sarah how tall I was. Sarah told her that I’m 5 foot 10 (I’m 5 foot 11.5, for the record). I’m also a meager 165 pounds. This little son of mine is already 1/8 my weight, and 38% of my height. The doc simply said that we must have super genes.

Tyler’s Height Tracker

Tyler’s Weight Tracker

This really ticked me off. I’ve spent most of my childhood and – so far – ALL of my adulthood believing that it was my destiny to become a super-hero. I’m 30 years old. With every day that passes, I am increasingly faced with the possibility that it simply isn’t going to happen. I’ve had days that I believed “The Matrix” was a movie about what I would become one day. Am I now supposed to believe that those movies were nothing more than a fictional story? I just don’t know if I can accept that. I’ve been practicing my “I know kung-fu” and “whoa” lines so that I’d get them right when the time came for me to spar with my mentor and jump from one rooftop to another, respectively.

Now I have to come to terms with the fact that I may not be destined to become a superhero and that my son may have gotten the gift that was meant for ME! It’s not fair. I never thought I’d be put in a position where I would have to live vicariously through my son. I’m going to have to throw him in front of a train so that I can watch HIM not get hurt. I’ll have to watch a bad guy shoot Tyler in the eyeball on a building rooftop to witness the bullet crumple and fall away from HIS stronger-than-steel retina. It should have been me. I have to admit, though, that it would be super cool to be able to say, “Tyler, fly me to Best Buy. I don’t feel like driving there today because I’m in a hurry.” Or “Tyler, use your x-ray vision and tell me how long the line is at Applebee’s.” Still, it wouldn’t be as awesome as doing those things myself, instead of having to use Tyler as my own personal aircraft.

How am I, as a seemingly normal person, supposed to raise a superhero? There’s a whole new level of “right and wrong” that I have to teach him. Anger management will also need to be addressed. I certainly don’t want Tyler to destroy an entire supermarket just because Sarah won’t buy him a squirtgun. And how do you discipline a child who could crush you with his bare hands? He could probably make me go insane just by thinking it.

My only solution, at this point, is to strap him to a table in my yet-to-be-built dungeon until I can fully understand his powers. I’m going to need to invest in some beakers, bubbly green liquids, and some swirly glass tubes. I’ll extract his DNA sequence using a highly scientific method of pricking his finger with a needle and putting a drop of blood on one of those glass slide things that scientists put under a microscope. I’ll cure his pain by the other highly scientific method of kissing the boo-boo and applying a Bob the Builder band-aid to the DNA extraction site. Then, using plans downloaded off the internet, I’ll construct a gamma-ray burst gun and a DNA re-sequencer to enhance the powers and introduce them to my genetic code.

I’m sure there’s something morally wrong with making one’s own son the human equivalent of a lab rat. But, I promise to offset that evilness by capturing at least 4 bank robbers, and 2 carjackers. For good measure, I’ll even save a cat from a tree and return Mr. Fluffles to the little old lady that accidentally let him out of the house.

Destiny…. here I come!!!

Semi-Wordless Thursday??

Ok, ok, ok… I totally missed “Wordless Wednesday” yesterday. Forgive me? So, how about I have a semi-wordless Thursday? It doesn’t have the same ring to it, but here’s what I propose. Instead of having a photo with no words… how about I use this as an excuse to post 3 videos???

Storytime with Tyler

Talking with Tyler

Roly Poly, Inch Worm

D A … D D Y needs C O … F F E E

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Tyler and his M-O-M-M-Y
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I’ve mentioned previously that I enjoy reading children’s stories. This fondness does not carry over to children’s music though. I’d much rather listen to The Doors talk to me about strange people, The Rolling Stones singing about painting things black, or Regina Spektor eating tangerines. I don’t particularly care about the Farmer in the Dell, what the Wheels on the Bus do, or what a twinkling little star is. Turns out, and this is news to me, that even though I don’t like children’s music, I still have to listen to it.

99% of the music I listen to is either through my iPod, or through my computer. I don’t listen to the radio, or to CD’s. As a result, I’ve had to – very reluctantly – clear some space on my iPod for a “Tyler” playlist. I currently have 139 songs in there. Whenever we go out in the car, I can fire up the TP (Tyler Playlist) and listen to countless songs about farms, monkeys, apples, or the letter “g”.

For the most part, I am perfectly fine with having a TP on my iPod. I’ve resolved myself to the fact that it needs to be there. But, there are some unwanted embarrassing situations created with having a TP on my iPod. Take, for example, the day I was in my garage. I was cleaning out one of our cars and had the iPod blaring through the stereo that I keep in the garage. I’m pretty sure I had the volume dial set to 11. I walked out of the garage towards our trash can. The neighbors were outside doing some gardening, but both of them were looking at me with a very strange expression on their faces. I waved politely, but found myself thinking, “What the heck are you looking at?”. It was a good 10 or 15 seconds later that I realized that “Apples and Bananas” was testing the decibel limit of the cheap 5 inch speakers. It was loud, and you could clearly hear the words.

I like to ote, ote, ote
Opples and banonos
I like to ote, ote, ote
Opples and banonos

I like to ute, ute, ute
Upples and banunus
I like to ute, ute, ute
Upples and banunus

If you’re a parent, I’m sure you know the song. When you are a man… alone… in your garage, there’s no way to explain yourself out of that situation. Instead, I scurried back into the garage, lowered the volume to barely a whisper and clicked “Next”.

Or how about the time that I was working on a hospital bed at one of my accounts? At the time, I thought I was alone in the room. I found myself humming Dinosaur Round. Then, completely without realizing that I’m doing it, I start SINGING it.

How can I feed this dinosaur,
Who eats my lunch and asks for more?
More …. More …. More …. More
Never own a dinosaur

Imagine my mortified shock and surprise when I stand up and see two nurses standing side-by-side in the doorway. One was slack jawed, the other was biting down, hard, on her lips. I would rather have been caught with my pants down and an apple pie in my hands. My frozen horror was broken just long enough for me to say, “Oh God”.

Nurse 1: “Wow.” *walks away*
Nurse 2: “Don’t stop for us. Keep going.” *begins laughing loudly*

I had a flash of thought and almost told the nurse that was still standing there that I was singing the intro to a new song by Linkin Park and that it was about to get very dark and graphic. But I knew that my previous “Oh God” would render me incapable of being able to really sell it. Instead, I said what comes naturally to me, “I’m such an idiot.”

Or – because, why shouldn’t we have 3 examples? – I could tell you about the the time I told a nurse at another hospital that I was finished and they could start using their stretcher again.

“You must be a dad.”, she said.

I inhaled through my nose, wondering if I smelled like spit-up breastmilk. I couldn’t smell anything, but I’m pretty sure that my sense of smell has been conditioned to that scent. Tyler’s sleeping when I leave for work in the mornings, so there’s a really short list of things for me to contemplate.

“Yeah, how couldya tell?”, I inquired.

“I’m pretty sure I heard you whistling ‘Snuggle Puppy‘ a few minutes ago.”

I couldn’t remember whistling that song, but those melodies are so simple that they burrow deep into your head. I’ve woken up on plenty-o morning with one of those songs already playing in my head.

Self-deprecatingly, I said, “I’m sure I was.”

I’ve found a few songs that I really enjoy, which is a testament to my simple mindedness. Every children’s album should be required to have one song, at a minimum, that appeals to adults. That will give me something to look forward to as I’m singing-along to Tyler about Five Little Ducks going out one day, over the hills and far away, and mother duck saying “Quack quack quack quack”, and only 4 little ducks coming back.

One of those rare songs that I find myself enjoying is “The Coffee Song” by Ralph’s World.

M O … M M Y needs C O … F F E E
D A … D D Y needs C O … F F E E
M O … M M Y needs C O … F F E E
D A … D D Y needs C O … F F E E

I love my kid
I love my kid
Gosh … I love my kid
But I need
What I need
And I need a lot of what I need and that’s

M O … M M Y needs C O … F F E E
D A … D D Y needs C O … F F E E

I need a latte
A cappucino
And tonight I think I’ll have a little vino

M O … M M Y needs C O … F F E E
D A … D D Y needs C O … F F E E
M O … M M Y needs C O … F F E E
D A … D D Y needs C O … F F E E

It’s simple, to the point, and oh so true.

And the winner is…

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I had absolutely NOTHING to do with the decision of entering Tyler into a beauty pageant. 97% of all males that see a therapist can have 100% of their problems linked back to them having “Mommy Issues”, according to a survey that I made up just now. When Tyler comes to us when he’s 32 and tells us he’s going to a psychiatrist, I’m going to look at Sarah and say, “The beauty pageant. You did this to him.”

Ok, maybe I’m exaggerating a little bit. We live in a small town called Auburn, in the state of infinite cornfields (Indiana). Our city is all of 7 square miles in size, with a population of 12,000. For at least the last 2 years, our city has hosted the DeKalb County Free Fall Fair (we’ve lived here for 2 years). The fair is setup on our downtown square, which is about a half mile from our house (which is nice because we walk there and don’t need to worry about parking).

I don’t know if they had this last year, but this year there was a “DeKalb County’s Cutest Baby” contest put on by the local woman’s care clinic. Sarah was beside herself with excitement and could not wait to enter Tyler. I said something along the lines of “no” to Sarah about it, and she said something along the lines of “yes” about it. Clearly, I was outnumbered.

So, Sarah explains the contest to me. You submit a photo of your baby. At the fair will be a booth with all the photos of the contestants on a board. Next to the photo will be a number. Each number will have their own little container that people put money into. Every penny counted as 1 vote. Then Sarah starts talking about the prizes. I have no interest in exploiting my child, nor of parading him around DeKalb county, as a constant reminder to the other parents of how ugly their babies are. I’m not that shallow. But…

“Wait, did you say prizes? I’m listening.” I said.

First place gets you a $125 giftcard to WalMart. I didn’t listen to the rest of the prizes because – let’s be honest – if Tyler is in a cutest baby contest, he will EASILY win. It’d be like putting Jessica Alba against Amy Winehouse*. No contest. But that didn’t stop me from saying to Sarah, “So, technically, we could put $120 in for Tyler and still pull a profit.”

Who would you vote for?

Although that would be true, there’s no way I would have done that. Firstly, it’s not necessary. Tyler IS the cutest baby in DeKalb county, and surely people would see that and vote for him. Secondly, it’s not sportsmanlike, and the wonderful residents of our fine town wouldn’t resort to dirty tricks like that. Sarah and I decided that we would put in $5 worth of votes for Tyler.

Fair week finally rolls up and we walk down there as a family. I am secretly very eager to get to the contest booth to vote, but I maintain my composure. We took our time walking around, getting a corndog, and checking out the rest of the booths. Finally, we get to the contest booth. Tyler is listed as contestant number 8 out of roughly 52. I’m telling you, Tyler was absolutely the cutest baby on the board. I’m not just saying it because I’m his dad, either. There were a couple photos that made me think to myself, “the parents MUST be joking.”. Maybe I am shallow afterall. But what really infuriated me was seeing at least 3 toddlers on the board. You don’t see 23 year old women in the Miss Teen USA pageant. So, there shouldn’t be 3 year old KIDS in a BABY contest. Ok, fine, I’m shallow, da**it! Are you happy now? Guilty as charged. Whatever, let’s just vote, go to the 4-H area, and look at pigs, horses, and quilts. But there was a problem.

There wasn’t anybody at the booth, and there was nowhere to put our money to vote for Tyler. I had a moment where I was tempted to tear down the photos of the toddlers, but I don’t think it would have gone unnoticed.

We ended up going back the next day. This time, there was someone there, so we walked up. Like an idiot, I made eye contact with a little old lady at the booth directly across from the contest booth. She was holding something out for me. It looked like a sticker, and I thought of how cute it would be to put a sticker on Tyler. When I grabbed it, I saw that it was a tiny booklet. Yup… Hook, line, and sinker…

Little old lady: “Are you sure that you’re going to go to heaven?”
Me: *oh crap* “Yes I am.”
LOL: “How do you know?”
Me: “I just do.”
LOL: “Do you think that’s enough?”
Me: “What, believing? Yes I do.”

At this point, I tried handing the booklet back to her.

LOL: “I think maybe you should keep that book and read it.”
Me: “No thank you. I’ll get along fine without it.”
LOL: “Well let me ask you this. How do you know if I’ll go to heaven.”

I won’t lie to you. I actually found myself thinking, “lady, I’m surprised that day hasn’t come yet.”

Me: *still holding the booklet out* “I would never presume to know whether you’ll go to heaven or not.”
LOL: “Well, I don’t think you’ll go to heaven with that attitude.”
Me: “Have a nice day.”

I placed the booklet in her hand and walked to join Sarah.

I am a huge proponent of “respecting your elders”. I was extremely polite, and have no idea what she didn’t like about my attitude. But she was pushing the limits of my politeness. And where in the Christian belief does it say that it’s ok to judge other people? Little old witch. And Sarah’s not dumb. She knew better to walk over there. She saw the trap a mile away, and let me jump right in the lion’s den. I would have done the same to her. A match made it heaven, her and I.

Back at the contest booth, we deposited our $5. Sarah glanced in some of the other containers and saw that there was some competition. She immediately pulls out her change purse and starts DUMPING it all in there, except for some random German coin that she had. I’m freaking out trying to cram my Visa in there. Obviously, these other families were trying to BUY the win for their son/daughter/grandson/granddaughter, those dirty little cheaters. I checked the newspaper every friggin day from then on, waiting for the results. I checked the mail, looking for my WalMart giftcard. What was taking so long? Then, one day, the newspaper has the results for the DeKalb County’s Cutest Dog contest. WTF!?!? It was over 2 weeks after that when I saw the results in the paper. Where the heck was Tyler’s photo? There must have been some type of mistake. As a matter of fact, Tyler didn’t place at all. The vote was rigged. I’m sure of it. DANG! Why didn’t Sarah put that damn German coin in there!? To add insult to mortal wound injury, the first place winner wasn’t even a baby! That kid was AT LEAST 2 years old! Ugh.

* Don’t get me wrong. I think Amy Winehouse has (had) a fantastic voice/album, but this purely about looks.