National Sibling’s Day: Top 5 List of Hilarious Brother Interactions (so far)

National Sibling day? I mean I guess it’s better than national footling hotdog day or national pineapple pizza day. For the past three years Jax celebrated this fake holiday with Buster and Max… however he now has to share this holiday with a miniature version of himself. A human sibling is a blessing and a curse… (I know I have two of them). 
It’s only been two months but I thought I’d celebrate this Siblings Day by highlighting the top five interactions between Jackson and Oliver’s short life together so far. 

5. Jackson decides to Baby Ollie by pushing him “gently” in his swing to help Rick him to sleep. This was a bad idea from the start mainly because Oliver was already sleeping and literally was snoozing hard. Not the dogs barking, doorbell ringing nor a blaring TV could wake him. It was one of the very few times we were able to get this kid to sleep with little to no fuss. That is until Jackson decided to push him into orbit. The swing hit its max flight capacity so quickly that it nearly jolted Oliver out the front window. Needless to say Oliver was awake for the next 22 straight hours.  

4. Early on in our sibling story Jackson, the eternal patron saint of feeding the starving, shoves a few goldfish down the gullet of a -“as he describes it “very hungry” six day old Oliver prompting and Immediate finger sweep of his esophagus. This was one of those times where you are very thankful for first aid/CPR training.

3. That time Jax felt the need to help a crying Baby Ollie by jamming his pacifier down his throat. I mean I get it. Those high pitches screams just get to be a little too much sometimes. And if he won’t keep the pacifier in his mouth then someone has to do it for him. Insert big brother…insert pacifier… forcefully. 

2. Close your eyes and picture one of those Strongman competitions where the Hercules looking chaps pick up those gigantic boulders and then place them ohh so carefully on top of a stone pillar. Now take away the pillar and replace the boulder with a newborn. That’s close enough to what it was like watching Jax decide he didn’t want to hold Oliver any longer. It was done with love and care… just a nonchalant shrug of the shoulders and a quick mumble of something that sounded like, “No more hold Baby Ollie.” That and then letting him roll slowly off his lap.  

1. It’s about time Little Baby Ollie made an appearance on the countdown. And what an appearance it was. Oliver coming in hot at #1 with a move that you just can’t come back from. The ultimate power move. It’s like talking cup says in Beauty and the Beast… Tale as old as time. Once your toes hit the water… bath or shower the seal is broken, and the floodgates are open. Oliver just turned on the fire hose and caught Jax with a powerful stream of pee-pee. It could have happened to anyone and I’m sure it has, but in our story it’s nice to see the underdog catch a break and win one for once.

And there you have it. Jackson dominating the most of the list, just as he older brother should. But Oliver coming in with a savage brother move lands him at #1 on the Sibling’s Day Top 5 Hilarious Interaction List. 

Let’s just hope they are always this peaceful

All four siblings calm… for the first and last time:

Oliver Potter and the Staci Miller Newborn Photos

I’m not sure if i have a writing style… if you had to narrow it down I know a few people might say my style is “grammatically horrible,” or “not really funny”… something like that. First Person Narrative… I guess that’s the closest you can get to narrowing down the writing. I mean the blog is titled Chronicles of a New Dad… I’d like to think I’ve Chronicled my perspective on having kids in a unique way.

But, today… I’ve decide to change it up a bit… I needed to tell someone thanks. Thanks for quite a bit actually. So I’m changing things up a little bit and am going writing letter style.

Dear Staci Miller (Photography),

It’s been almost three years since you came into our life… expensive Nikon camera, gorgeous props and the patience of a saint. Yes, early on in our relationship you had a different name… Pink Elephant… different but still amazing. And that’s just it… i needed to thank you for bringing amazing to life.

Not many people can take the thoughts that swim around in this weird brain of mine… take those abstract ideas and make them concrete. You’ve successfully, in essence, painting the pictures of my mind and put them on canvas. You’re an artist with a flash and lost of fluorescent lighting.

The thing is, that’s not even what makes these pictures a masterpiece. It’s the fact that you have to deal with me… a hyper… anxiety riddled parent who is obsessed with details. I’m the Jack Nicholson (As Good As It Gets Nicholson) of parenting during new born photos. OCD to the max.

You’ve taken photos of a wizards hat and wand… you successfully posed an infant on a giant piece of cheese and most impressive of all captured numerous shots while getting peed on. It’s impressive to say the least.

There was the time at the barn where Jackson got bit by a rooster, the time where we got you caught up in a beach wedding with Miller Highlife cans in the background, the session where I made you take pictures of my sons butt and the time my pants were too tight to help hold Oliver’s head up. I admit to ruining quite the few “perfect shots.”

You took pictures while my son puked on your floor, peed on your brand new background and shattered glass Christmas ornaments (ok the ornaments were my fault… and I may have eaten a few cheese sticks out of your fridge, but you catch my drift… we’re not easy subjects to photograph.

But that all pales in comparison to the latest sitcom-like experience. You know the one where I made you snap photos of my son inside a flower pot while he was screaming (purposefully making him cry, because that’s what Mandrakes do in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets… (which by the way is my least favorite book and movie).

You did it all with a smile on your face and 85mm – 135mm lens in your hand (is that a real thing I know nothing about cameras?). You always welcomed us in your home, or your studio or some random farm, which if I were you I’d suggest every time since then Jackson can’t eat all your cookies and string cheese.

And for some reason you keep having us back and the pictures get better each time we do. For that… I thank you… from the bottom of my Harry Potter loving heart.


And then the unprofessional, I should have been helping instead of sneaking pictures w my iPhone, pictures:

 

Here is the link to Jackson’s newborn photos: https://chroniclesofanewdad.com/2014/05/10/5-10-14-newborn-photos/

Brothers: Best Friends, Worst Enemies and the Greatest Inventors 

​Brothers are best friends and worst enemies… strongest ally and biggest rival. I know… I have one, I live that so called “sibling rivalry.” I’ve made him eat dirt and thrown him through a wall (literally through) and he broke my nose. I also would want him by my side if there was something going down (unless Chuck Norris or Conor McGregor were available). Now I get to watch two brothers play this game of sibling chess from the outside looking in. 

Everyone gave the warnings, “expect the worst. Jax is going to regress, he’s going to be full of anger and jealousy. He’ll be completely uninterested in the baby… he won’t understand the change. The first time they meet Jax might hit him.” 

There were nerves all around that day in the nursery. We set the meet and greet up w caution and care. It was like setting your best friend up on a blind date. “Dont worry, it’ll be great, he’ll totally get you!” “You guys will hit it off right off the bat.” “Just be yourself and it’ll all be fine.”

Rewind 30+ years ago… I’m told I didn’t handle the situation very well. My little brother didn’t get such a warm welcome upon his entry into this world. But that was short lived. We enjoyed a ton of fun, experienced many life altering situations and caused/got into our fair share of trouble. From snake attacks, to the steam roller, to the babysitter who sprayed potpourri everywhere, enduring bringing home another sibling… this time a sister, to pillow wars on thanksgiving resulting in vomiting turkey and stuffing everywhere… to running the courts in the Bronx with the “neighborhood ‘friends’ who carried knives”… to car clubs and booming systems and holding each other’s blocks at the starting line and winning gold and setting hurdle records togethercollege roommates… well that’s another story. Let’s just say a Britney Spears poster, a comforter and a gallon of spackle saved us a lot of money that year. However, I’m pretty sure the best thing to come out of our relationship was the invention of the Olympic pending sport “All Out Basketball.” Imagine living in the northeast where winter pretty much kills the idea of playing basketball on outdoor courts… even with a shovel and some ice melt… there no way to have a “real game.” Dribbling is impossible, there’s no traction and the backboard can shatter with one erratic shot. 

Enter… ALL OUT BASKETBALL. A basketball based, rugby, football hybrid. It’s designed for icy backyard courts and is best played when wearing boots and 14 layers of clothing. It allows the competitors to combine the best parts of all three sports and is perfect for brothers because of its violent nature. No dribbling and a hoop low enough to dunk like you were Vince Carter in his early days (NOTE: Just for clarification… I could dunk on a 10 foot rim too). The game was played on a shotty shoveled outdoor court and competitors benefited from a slightly deflated ball (we were the Tom Brady of the neighborhood) and often resulted in ripped snow pants and fractured limbs. But it was fun… and Vinny and I are still holding out hopes the IOC will adopt it for the 2018 Winter Olympics. 

Fast forward, back to February 2017… a dimly lit nursery on a cold and snowy (ironic) day. Jackson carefully selected a present for his new little brother and partner in crime. Although his first choice of a Sudoku book, was not the best pick… the blue puppy stuffed animal was perfect. He repeated, “Me hug, kiss baby Ollie.” The whole way down the hallway and up the elevator… although he had time to spell his name and count to ten for the lady who didn’t think he could find the D button for her on the elevator.  

Honestly, I’m not sure who was more excited me the first time I met Rickey Henderson or the first time Jackson met his brother Oliver. The look of excitement and honestly… the look of love was immediate (I say love because I want to believe it was love and not the look of trouble). Jackson presented Ollie with the stuffed animal he picked out and Oliver gave Jax a present too… a recycled Christmas gift that Santa had left behind… an Olaf talking figure. It was love at first sight, and he liked Oliver too. 

The meeting wasn’t long, it didn’t need to be. It was the perfect amount of hugs, kisses and questions. Jackson talked about Oliver the entire ride home, all night and all the next day until he got to hug and kiss baby Ollie again. Jackson met his new best friend and Oliver met his new body guard. As a dad you can’t ask for much more. 

Here’s to hoping these two invent something together as cool, if not cooler, than “All Out Basketball!”

Paw… Cookie… Yeah!!!

 

 

Over the course of almost three years Buster and Max have been on the short end of the stick for a lot of famous incidents. There’s the Meatball Massacre, the Christmas Catastrophe and the time Jax let Buster and Max outside in a driving snow storm without us knowing… poor dogs turned into real life Four legged Olafs.

But the thing is these guys were here long before Jackson… and honestly I’ve cleaned more Buster and Max pee and poop then I’ve cleaned up from Jackson. These guys are a huge part of Jackson’s life and from day one, they’ve been extremely protective of him.

Meanwhile, Jackson has tried to ride Buster like he was a camel and has attempted many WWF finishing moves on poor Max. Both dogs have nubby tails, yet Jackson is still able to yank on them and the fact that Buster’s ears are still attached to his head is a miracle.

The thing is though, Jackson has learned how to be patient, caring and at times remorseful through his relationship with his “brothers”. It’s been, at times stressful, but for the most part it’s been so very rewarding to watch my son and two dogs interact and enjoy each other’s company.

 

They say a dog is mans best friend… but I’d venture to say that once a child comes along… a dog is a boy’s best friend. (Especially this little boy and “Di-Di-Dah and Dah”).

 

Dinner Time

 

Brothers bonding over the dinner table

 
So my son is apparently now into eating dog food? How? Why? I don’t even eat candy… and my kid wants to eat doggie kibble… Every time I think he is turning into a little mini me he goes and does something like this.

I don’t know… maybe I’m missing something? I mean dogs are the most amazing creatures on planet Earth. They basically dedicate their lives to make our lives better. Dogs were put on this planet to make us happy… You could leave the house for two minutes to get the mail and they literally great you like you’ve just gotten released from a 12 year prison sentence. Man’s best friend indeed.  

Maybe it’s the food? Maybe have Jax chow down on some organic chicken, salmon and sweet potato doggie pellets isn’t such a bad thing?  

PS: We’ve established that dogs were created to simply bring joy to humans… Meanwhile, cats were created to be smug assholes.

Dog People vs Normal People (PS I Love My Dogs)

Let me start by saying I absolutely LOVE my boys!

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I guess I’m not a dog person.  I am not sure what that even means… I know there is some connotation that comes with that statement, and again I’m not sure what that even is.  I love my dogs, but after today I just can’t count myself as one of the “dog people.”  Steph and I have had Buster for almost nine years and Max for seven and we still love them more than we ever thought possible.  But the thing is, we now have a son… a human, someone who can’t sleep in a crate, someone who you can’t put a shock collar on to keep him in the yard.  You know a real living baby who is a person not a dog (not that our boys dogs ever used a crate!).

I remember before Jax came everyone used to say we would stop posting pictures on instagram and buying the boys (Buster and Max) Xmas gifts when we had our first child.  I remember people saying how annoying it was to see all these posts about “pets”, but you know what… too bad… these two little guys are part of our lives, they have been with us since the beginning and nothing will change that!

But here’s the thing… there is a difference, a REAL DIFFERENCE, between “dog people” and people who love their dogs.  I figured this out today, at the dog park of all places.  Steph and I try, not as much with Jax here now, but we try to get the boys as much excersize as possible, the dog park, doggie day care… even a simple walk around the block.  However, there always something that made me feel a bit out of sort.  When ever we went to the dog park, there was some sort of middle school lunch wave thing going on. Like if you don’t wear dog sweaters and carry a fanny pack filled with treats and poo bags then you don’t belong here.  I always noticed it, but never felt it until today.

We took an hour to pack the car like we were going on vacation for three weeks, and headed out the door for a nice family trip to the neighborhood (next town over) doggie park.  We got there and immediately were shunned by the locals.  Looks of disdain and disgust at the fact that we showed up without our dogs on a harness or the fact that we were wearing jeans and not stained, purple sweat pants.  Within two minutes Stephanie was being read the Dog Park Riot Act for something (we still have no idea what, maybe because she wasn’t wearing camouflage?!).  Every time dogs began playing with Buster and Max owners were quick to intervene.  I think I heard someone say, “ewww those two dogs pooped and their owners threw their poo in the garbage instead of holding in a fanny pack.”  Just pure weirdness.

So I guess there are “dog people”… the people who bring their dogs to the dog park and eat the same treats as their dogs do… and then their are people who love their dogs, like us.  Who are not made for the dog parks… we are more of the dress your dogs in an argyle sweater and take them for a walk at the doggie friendly outdoor shopping malls.

Love these two little monsters… and I am really glad that Jax is forming a bond with both of them!

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These two even hang out in the same places!602781_10200520835409784_1854874412_nphoto-2

And one of my favorites… the boys watching over their brother while he naps!

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