Oll-E > Wall-E

Both are pretty cute and they even sound the same

I’ve blogged about all the normal baby and toddler firsts… I’ve talked about cleaning nuclear-like diaper messes and first solid foods… I’ve written about bubble wrapping and baby gating the house for their first steps. Now don’t get me wrong those are all hugely significant moments in time, but they all pale in comparison to hearing you child speak their first words. I’ve been in educational for nearly 20 years… I’ve taught children to read, to multiply triple digit numbers and I’ve taught children how to explain their thinking, but teaching a child to speak… that’s just magical.

Parenting is just a series of events that makes you feel equally proud and sad… watching your child become more independent each and everyday makes your heart both swell with pride for the amazing little being you are raising and also makes your heart long for the days when your baby needed you for everything. Like Elton John said, “it’s the Circle of Life” (I’m not sure if that analogy works here, but it sounds good so if you don’t mind, please just roll with it).

Listen, becoming mobile matters, it’s a huge step (pardon the pun) in the growth and development of a child. Learning to talk… to have a reciprocal conversation… is like the when the caveman first discovered fire, or first time you realized you didn’t have to actually flip open a cell phone to use it. It’s a game changer

Oliver has been saying words for a bit now… some much more clearly than others. But to hear him say his own name… I don’t know why… it was really cool. It was special. I know he has asked for juice when he’s wanted it and I’ve heard him yell, “dog” when Buster and Max were being naughty, but this… saying his name… I feel like it transforms him from a parakeet to a real person. I’m not sure why (especially since he was literally repeating his name), but just stay with me here… it’s my blog so I can write whatever I want.

Talking is transformative, getting to a point where you’re child knows his name, can say his own name and can string a word or two together changes an entire parent-child relationship I’m just hoping we are getting to the point where we can get a response from Oliver when ask him, “why are you screaming and what was the purpose of throwing yourself on the ground just now?”

But for now… I’ll take the slow and steady progress, even if he sounds like that robot WALL-E when he talks!

Eight Months

Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but it feels like just yesterday that this little chunk was born. A lot can happen in eight months… when you take a step back and think about that amount of time in a vacuum it seems like forever, but in this case eight months have flown by. 

  • Weight: large watermelon 
  • Length: second notch on his walker-car
  • Eating pasta, pizza crust, apples and bread
  • Crawling 
  • First Haircut
  • Loves playing w his colored cup-stackers 
  • Enjoys watching the dogs run and around and play
  • Stops crying when Jackson sings “Rock-A-Bye Baby” to him
  • Watched his first regular season Green Bay Packers game (9.10.17- SEA 9 – GB 17)
  • Became a cousin for the first time (to baby Dominic)
  • Loves to laugh

Sorry Son(s): Chronicles of a New Dad (For a Second Time)

Starting over was never one of my strong suits. I like to get things right the first time around (let me just state for the record that with JAX we definitely got things right the first time… he’s amazing to the nth degree). That being said, I thought starting over always had to be a “bad thing.” But honestly, starting over is not so bad this time around. Starting over is a new opportunity, a way to broaden your horizons and see the world in a way you never thought possible.

As a “young” guy I always had so much going on, I was trying to figure life out, what it was all about, what’s coming next, or how I was going to build my career. Then it became not all about me anymore. It was “I’ve got to take care of a baby” and of course it gets easier as time goes by and you get older and parenting becomes easier. I was able to slow down and appreciate what I had… a healthy and ridiculously happy little boy and was totally OK with putting him first.

And then… Jackson hit two and a half. I spent nights watching him throw kitchen chairs around and sprawl out across the floor because he didn’t want cheese on his macaroni… (the same cheese he ironically had just asked me to put on his macaroni). You would think this kid had learned that Olaf wasn’t a real snowman or something. Life got tough. Days got longer; nights became more and more sleepless. Still, my days were bright because I was so in love with this little guy and because, I knew we had been through so much. I knew that it would just keep getting easier and the answers I was looking for were just around the corner.

That was until I found out I was going to be a dad… AGAIN. I thought things were just calming down. Life’s craziness was just coming down off the climax of a never ending rollercoaster. How the HELL am I going to manage to take care of another human. Honestly, I am surprised Jackson hasn’t packed a bag and gone off to live with Auntie Tricia by now, let alone the fact that he still has 10 fingers and 10 toes.

This time there was no cake with blue frosting or a sonogram with GO PACK GO written across the top. There was no craziness of prepping a nursery (there still somehow has been enough baby clothing coming in to rival Hillary Clinton’s pant suit collection). Things are so much different than they were threeish years ago. Buster and Max are no longer running the roost and I am lucky if I get a few minutes to use the bathroom without seeing tiny little fingers reaching under the door like some sort of real life horror movie.

Now I have to start all over again!??!?? You know what? I am scared as hell. Two kids? With one kid you can play man to man with safety coverage over the top. On tough days you can even double team one kid. But two kids? That is zone coverage day in and day out, and for all you football fans out there, you know zone coverage is easy to beat. Jackson is slippery, one minute he’s under your feet, the next minute the screen door is squeaking and he’s half way up the front lawn. He can beat zone coverage every day and twice on Sunday.

I’m starting to freak out a little bit over here. Don’t get me wrong, Jackson has been the greatest joy and most precious blessing in my life. There is not a day goes by that his presence hasn’t made my life better, but raising one is hard enough. My body still struggles to catch up to the extra hours I need to raise a son. My calendar has become an overlapped mess of appointments, music classes and kid birthday parties weaved in and out of work meetings. If I wasn’t playing, feeding or inventing a way to get him to sleep, I was trying to find a quiet 20 minutes to catch some 💤s myself.

It was never easy, but it also wasn’t always as hard as everyone seems to make it out to be. Eventually we hit a groove and Jax slowly became adjusted to life in this crazy household and settled into his routines quite nicely. The feeling of exhaustion was reserved for times few and far between. Emails were answered in a timely manner again and I actually was able to clear out about 50% of my DVR (on a side note how do people actually have more than like 30% space available on their DVR. It’s Un-American to not have at least 25 unwatched movies recorded… just in case). Two kids though? All that is down the drain. It’s back to Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, bath time in the sink and sleeping anywhere I can close my eyes.

Raising a kid is scary as hell, but when you start creating a team of them… scary is an understatement. The only hope is that Mom and Dad built a good foundation with the first one, so that we have a head start on what works for the next one. I guess we’ll find out in March.

Good luck mom… good luck dad… good luck Jax, Buster and Max… Good Luck Earth. There’s another Fragola on the way.

 

Captain Jack

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Ok so there are 2 schools of thought here. Either 1- Max is sharing his baby with his little brother or 2- Max is trying the old switcharoo so he can sneak Jax outside and bury him in the garden.

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Uncle Dusty and Capt. Jack #Pirate #Boat #UncleAndNephew

Two Months

2months

Two months old? 2 months? How is that even possible? I can not even explain how much I enjoy being around this little guy. With summer here and my hours allowing for more time at home… I’m starting to see how much work it is to be a parent. But, its been worth every minute. Jackson’s personality is definitely starting to show and I feel like we’re beginning to figure out what his different moods are and what his different cries mean. 2 months of crying, popping, allergies and 2 months of crazy, insane love.

PS: He started formula this month BC of the allergies.
#1 – Allergy specialized formula is $$$$
#2 – Baby poop after formula is a different kind of poop. It has its own classification on the poop hierarchy.