⭐️ A Star Is Born ⭐️

The time has finally come. That time that every parent fears: their child’s school performance/play. I’ve seen so many of them as a teacher and principal and they, from that side are amazing. An opportunity to see 300 students whom you work with each day, who’ve you’ve seen grow abs improve each day, put it all together and show off their growth.  

Growth mindset, that’s what it’s all about as an educator. But as a parent. We want to see the end product. We want to see an end product from start to finish and then get the heck out of there. I don’t want to watch everyone else’s kids spin around in circles, or cry on stage. It’s uncomfortable for everyone. You feel bad for the teachers who have to don the kindergarten Three Little Pigs costume and be the only ones up on the stage to know the lyrics and Dane moves. There’s the parents who are standing just off to the side yelling stage directions to their child who they feel should be acting on the next Nick Jr. Hit show and you as the parent who’s just happy your kid hasn’t run off stage and peed in the bushes.  

Then there is the fact that you’ve worked a full day and have nothing in your stomach but a granola bar and three cups of coffee. All you want is every performance to last just long enough to snap a few pictures to stick on Instagram and time it so perfectly that it looks like your child knew every part of the play. Then you can set it as your profile picture on Facebook so it looks like you have the next Robert Deniro on your hands. The worst part though… the transition time in between class performances. Class A runs around the stage, the poor teachers looking like Rocky chasing that chicken. They might as well be herding cats. Poor Class B is having kids who are screaming and crying dragged onto stage so their parents can clap and wave. It’s painful to watch as 17 hours pass in between songs when all the audience wants is a smooths and quick transition like when Netflix only makes you only wait five seconds to watch the next episode. No time wasted, no one hurt, one class off… the next one on… everyone’s happy.  

However, there’s always that one child. The show-stealer, the ray of light, the savior. You know right away that they are meant to be on that stage… to bring entertainment to the masses. To bring joy and happiness to the masses as soon he/she takes the stage. It usually happens after a lull in the show. Maybe a few classes performed a nursery rhyme or too… maybe they just stood still and smiled. But then it happens… a child comes from the clouds and struts his stuff right to center stage. You can tell from that twinkle in their eyes that something special is about to happen. Then you hear the intro. The beat drops like your at an old school Notorious BIG concert. It’s the Lion King… you instantaneously know that child is going to put on a show like no other. “I just can’t wait to be king…” the perfect metaphor for what is about to go down. The king of the Pre-School Play is about to dominate the make shift stage in the center of the parking lot. 

… and that’s just what happens. It just so happens that the new king of the stage was my little boy. Jackson “Fred Astaire” Fragola. It started off slowly, and I could hear the crowd starting to chat amongst themselves. Then it happened, Jax sensing the crowd was in need of something to cheer for, stepped forward and put on a show for the ages. 


The slow clap to get the crowd going, followed by the slow spin into the toe-tap (trip over his own feet) was stunning. The crowd began to buzz and you could see the adrenaline coursing through our new star’s veins. Our savior was here. The clouds parted. The bass seemed to get louder and the energy in the crowd was equal to a stadium full of tween girls at a Justin Bieber concert. 

A few more moves brought ohhhs and ahhhs… and then it happened. The half turn, the look-back smile… and the then… THE RUMP SHAKER! It was over, right then and there. He had officially taken over. The crowd lost their collective minds. It was pandemonium… 

…And then… just as quickly as it started, it all came to an end. With Jazz Hands and a smile… it was at that moment a true star was born. 

The Eye of the Tiger

I’m so tired of everyone telling me how bad things are going to get.  

  • “Just wait…” 
  • “For now it’s easy, but not for long.”
  • “Enjoy it while you can, because it’s going to be a nightmare.”

Yea I get it. The second kid is harder. I mean listen I have a few college degrees… two is more than one. I understand the mathematics behind having a second child. But listen, I got this. I think we did a pretty damn good job with the first one. Can he be a pain in the butthole sometimes, of course… does he annoy me when he asks for the lights on, and then off, and then on, and then off… yeah… a little annoying I admit it. But listen he’s not even three yet. I’m ok with that. 

I’m sure things aren’t going to be easy forever. I’m sure I’ll look back at this blog and curse myself. But for now… things are running like a well oiled machine… I got this… every morning I wake up… stare these two kids right in there beady little eyes and quite the prophet Rocky Balboa: “You ain’t so bad, you ain’t so bad, you ain’t nothin’… I ain’t even breathin’ heavy.”

What my mornings look like these days.. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=I7krz_Krn4k

Five Things my Son Calls “Dah”

 
You imagine all these amazing milestones when you first learn you’re going to have a baby. First steps, food, words… Funny thing is it never winds up the way you thought.  His first steps are a few unstable stumbles and his first real food is some nasty combination of peas, zucchini and apples… But the first words… That’s what really throws you off.

1. Dah (Traslation: Dad)

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The original “Dah.” This one was easy; there’s not to much to figure out here.  “Dada” was his first word, so it’s not hard to figure out why “Dah” means dad.  I’m the first and I’m the best.

2. Dah (Translation: Dog or Buster or Max) 

Jax loves his brothers… I mean his “Dahs!” So much so he gets up to almost full speed and swan dives on top of them when he gets home everyday.  Coincidentally, “Dah” is also the same sound Busyer makes when Jax lands on top of him.

3. Dah (Translation: Toy) 

Doesn’t matter what toy… the singing donkey with two chewed off ears, the snail that gets body slammed daily, or the boxes he like to stack and then karate chop over… all referred to as “Dah”… Except for the creepy ass ride-on dog that asks “will you be my friend?”  That is not “Dah” that just makes the poor kid cry.

4. Dah (Translation: Book)  

I remember when he first laid eyes on a book… It was love at first sight… (If eating the pages and trying to rip the pages out equals love).  It took a lot of reading every night before bed… but now there is not a chance he goes to sleep with out us reading him a “Dah.”  As a teacher its pretty cool to see your son run to the book shelf and find his favorite book, take it out, hand it to you and yell “Dah”… now that I think about it… I wonder if “Dah” also means, “Please read me Chika Chika Boom Boom for the seven-thousandth time!!”

5. Dah (Translation: Yes)
So here’s the thing… Maybe he’s Rusian? maybe all the other words above are just his approval of the thing itself?  Maybe he’s just saying yes to everything… Is your dad the coolest dad in the world? “Dah!”  Do you want to swan dive off the couch onto your brothers?  “Dah!”  

On a side note every time I hear him say “Dah” I feel like it’s matter of moments before he turns into a Russian Bond Villian or I find out he was one of the extras in Rocky IV who were sent to keep an eye on Rocky while he trained.  

   
 

He Got Game (Jax’ 1st Steps)

I’m not sure where I want to go with this one.  I could go a few ways… I could talk about how proud i am of my son for taking his first steps… I could talk about how sad I am that I wasnt there… or I could talk about how demanding of a walking coach Uncle Dustin is. Any of the three would accurately describe the video above.  Any of the three would be acceptable.  But if you have been reading this blog for any amount of time you know for a fact I am about to go on a tangent about my damn brother-in-law being a self-serving  communist, militant leader.

Yes I know Jax walked; yes I know that is a gigantic accomplishment. (Also means our lives as we know it are over)… But come on… Walking?  I mean how big of a deal is that?  I walk everyday.  I can walk while I’m half asleep from my bed to the bathroom and back with at least 65% accuracy.  I mean come on everyone walks… Get over it.  (Or cry a little everytime you watch the video like I do).

I’m more concerned right now at the fact that my brother-in-law has turned from a kind hearted uncle into a vicious human being, more concerned with outcomes than with the feelings and well being of his nephew.  I mean did you watch this video? Did you see the pressure he put on my son to do something he was clearly nervous about.  Ridiculous. Completely unnecessary.  Way to demanding.

He Got Game was clearly Dustin’s favorite movie.  He modeled himself after Jesus Shuttlesworth’s dad… Dustin is Denzel, Denzel is Dustin.  All the video above is missing is Uncle Dusty making Jax run suicides in the dark.

Jackson might as well be chasing a chicken in a fenced in parking lot instead of slowly learning how to walk.  Walking you say!?!!  He should be eating lightening and crapping thunder by now.

I guess we should be thankful he is growing up slowly but surely and just sit back and enjoy the process… As long as Uncle Dustin lets us!!!

Here is the whole video of his first steps:

The Dad Bod

This whole dad thing has been quite the adventure.  Everything from being responsible for another human being to learning how to work a baby bjourn has been a new and exciting experience. I love being a dad… But this whole internet trending of the so called “DadBod” is getting rediculous.  

The DadBod… The Dad Bod…. The Dad… Bod.  Really?  Seriously?  This is a thing now?  I’ve been working out for years, played college sports and now the “in thing” is eating pizza and skipping the gym for happy hour?  I call BS! 

I just don’t get it.  I don’t think (the dad bod) is something women think is good looking. I don’t think it’s something guys think is good looking. I think it’s something that a bunch of lonely dudes who eat pizza and haven’t seen the inside of a gym since they they watched Rocky V (which by the way was a terrible freaking movie, almost a franchise ruiner).  

Incase you didn’t know- I’m a dad.  I don’t have time for the gym… I barely have time to brush my damn teeth or go to the bathroom, most days, I usually only have time to pick one of those two!  But I make time for the gym a few days a week.  I mean I’m no longer an Olympic hurdler… I no longer eat grilled chicken and steamed vegetables for every meal.  But I’m not a “DadBod” kinda guy.  

 

Sure we both enjoy a good nap, but that’s only after a decent workout.

 

The DadBod is so much more than a stomach. Girls say they want a guy who can have some fun and doesn’t need to live in the gym right?  But are they ready for what comes with the DadBod… The DadBod is not just a lifestyle it’s a state of mind a religion if you don’t mind me saying.  You know… Just a guy laying around on the couch all weekend eating chips and picking lint out of their belly button… Watching Netflix in his boxers and an old Nirvana t-shirt… That’s the DadBod.  

You’re telling me that’s what women want? Get outta here.  I’m happy somewhere in the middle of the DadBod and the Calvin Klein model in tighty-whities who stares and judges me from the side of a bus ad.  

#NapTimeFail

I am a not good at this whole nap thing.  Its been eight months and I still can’t get him to fall asleep.  Grammy can get him to fall asleep during an earthquake.  I can’t get him to fall asleep wrapped up in a swaddle, in the dark, when he is exhausted.  I feel like this is getting harder.  I don’t know how to tell when he is supposed to sleep and I sure as hell don’t know how to get him to go to sleep.

Nap time in this house is more like playtime and I just don’t get it.  I don’t understand why Jax won’t nap… All I want to do is nap these cold winter days.  I don’t think I take enough naps.  I wish my life still involved naps and watching movies all day with blankets covering the window.

I know you guys, especially you new parents, feel my pain.  I get home after the gym on a Saturday morning and I know there is 40,000 things I need to do around the house.  Nap time is what I wish for when it’s time to get home and start doing stuff.  Screw mopping the floors or picking up doggie dookie on the front lawn, I’d rather lay in bed all day and watch every Rocky movie in succession on TBS except for Rocky V, (I think I’ve seen this movie maybe once all the way threw it was so bad.)

Where does this kid get this from?  Why won’t he nap?  Why won’t he snuggle up next to the fireplace with his dad in a blanket fort and sleep our troubles away for the afternoon.  Nope he wants to do stuff, play with my face and look outside at stuff.

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Guess Ill have to nap on my own time.