Monsters vs Best Friends

Setting: Jax’ room; 8:00pm

Jax: “Dad a monster might come in the room and eat you up.”

Me: “There aren’t any monsters in here bud.”

Jax: “Yes there are, they like to eat daddys and cell phones.”

Me: “I promise there aren’t any monsters in here bud.”

Jax: “It’s ok dad, Buster is in here. He eats monsters. He jumps off the bed and chases them out and then eats them up. He’s my best friend.”

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

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!


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!


Nighttime Routines

Night time routines have become like clockwork here lately… A perfect and systematic approach to sleep preparation.

When we imagined how sleepy time would happen we saw the twinkling stars as Jackson lay peacefully in his comfortable bed as soft lullabies played in the background. Jax would slowly drift off into dreamland as his slate blue eyes closed and he faded into the darkness of night.

We would just sit in the family room, mom in her kerchief and I in my cap. We would share stories of our day. I’d sip on herbal tea as she listed all the things she loves about me.

It would be pure nirvana.

We get him fed, bathed and ready for bed at 7:00 as per our amazing unbreakable routine.

It’s all about the routine. Phone could ring, text messages are buzzing… Hell Ed McMahon could show up at the door with an oversized check from Publisher’s Clearing House and we are not missing our set bed time.

Routine is everything.

Everything is perfect… It’s 7:01 Jax is laying in that adorable way where one arm is folded like Gumby in what looks like an extremely painful way to sleep, but ensures us he is out. The noise machine is humming, we tiptoe out and can just taste that herbal tea.

Then… Dogs bark.

Crying ensues.

Me: it’s fine there’s someone walking a dog outside they’ll stop in a second.

Wife: I don’t care… Shut them up before he gets up.

10 minutes later: Dogs cease barking and Jax is still crying.

Wife: I hate when he cries, I feel so bad.

Me: I know, me too

5 minutes later:

Wife: Maybe he just needs someone to rub his back.

Me: do you want me to go?

Wife: Well, no… Then he gets used to that.

Me: I guess we can wait a few minutes.

3 minutes and 37 seconds later


Wife: He’s so cute when he’s sleeping isn’t he?

Me: I know, I can’t even take it.

43 seconds later

Kujo and his little brother begin waking the neighborhood again. We both immediately freeze in our spots and cringe in silence and stare at each other.


Dogs are now chasing each other around the kitchen and barking.

More cringing.

More nothing…

Finally: everyone is quiet and sleep ensues for everyone in this routine rich household.

Without even thinking twice we both pass up on the romantic conversation and tea… And crash on the bed… It’s our turn to try to get some shut eye.

Max Guards the Little Lord of the Castle

I just witnessed the greatest show of love and protection known to man! Jax was having a rough time so Auntie Sue and her troops came over to lend a hand. Upon entering the house they were greeted by Buster and Max. A few barks and some growling and they were done… Until they made their way to Jackson. Max literally positioned himself in between the baby and them. Every time they moved he moved, no growling. Just watching…staring… Judging. Once they showed they were there to help, Max went and laid down.

Beautiful show of affection and love from big brother Max. He’s grown into a fine young pup. Gone are the days he would run head first into the cabinets… This is the new Max. Where was Bister you ask? Setting a good example of how to look after his little brother, right? Try he was eating all the puke off the play mat and blanket.

1 Step forward, 2 steps back at the Fragola household.