Sunday, September 27, 2009

Jack turns 2

Happy Birthday to Jack! The little guy turned 2 on the 25th. We've had a fun Birthday weekend. Jack had a party last night with his close friends and family. These individuals absolutely spoiled the heck out of the little guy, and I didn't see him complaining. We had a fun party. Everyone ate Jack's meal of Mac n' Cheese, chicken fingers, apple sauce and veggies. Lavi made adult versions of all these things and would have won the Top Chef challenge had Bravo TV accepted our invite.

Before any of you asked, Yes I did get my son a bicycle. We went with the Prince Lionheart by Balance Bike. The concept behind the bike is that the kid can learn to balance a two wheeler before learning to pedal. This particular brand has an adjustable seat and the wheels are not wood, which makes inflating the tires easier and safer. I'm excited for him to try it out more. Already he looks like a young Thor Hushvold standing over it. Just get this kid a Norwegian/Ballard flag jersey and he's ready to sprint for the win I'm sure.

Turning 2 seems like an almost unceremonial milestone, and yet it ushers in the "terrible twos." This is a milestone that is almost as feared as the first round of teething. I think because it brings the expectation of whining, crying fits, frustration and packages it all with a wrapper of potty learning. By the way, its not PC to call it training anymore, they are learning, not being trained. Personally however he gets it I don't care what you call it. Jack is entering his two's like any other kid. I'm learning that it is not at all terrible for him. I think all these transitions should be called Parental Milestones because the truly challenged are the parents. Luckily Lavinia and I are making it through really well, with a lot help from Jack.

Jack being two is pretty cool. I'm looking forward to a lot of new things from him.
Cheers
Jeff

Monday, September 21, 2009

Swinging

Jack and his buddy Marin swing at daycare

Countdown!

Hey All,
 
Since the internet has not gotten to the point where the voice comes through, this is actually the second brother.  I have to have Jeff post for me since my work doesn’t allow us to do this things with their internet (crazy guys are worried about us not working and making them money or something, I dunno).  Wouldn’t it be cool if the voice did come across as you were reading??  Although Jeff and I have been told that we sound similar, and especially so on the phone.  I’ve actually fooled my own mother into thinking I was him, proving that despite her stature she is not an emperor penguin (you see penguins can always recognize their kids by their cries, ya know if you have to explain the joke, perhaps it’s not that good……)
 
The wedding is in 17 days and things are going well out here.  For all of you out there that are making the trip out East, the foliage is on pace to be looking pretty darn spectacular.  I’d like to make a general request that everyone pray for good weather.    Lots of folks ask me if I’m ready and the answer is that I’m so very ready for the marriage, but the wedding is a bit cumbersome.  The planning is going well though.  We have great folks helping us out.  There have been the, apparently inevitable, discussions on table napkins and floral arrangements.  After my third apathy induced aneurism Siobhan took point on all of those details (and God bless her for it).  Our weekends have been full of commerce upon more commerce as the small details are tended too.  All things being said this process is much easier on the groom than the bride.  I have to get measured for  a tux, once, and that’s pretty much it.  For the bride there are several fittings, hair appts. for different options, etc, etc., etc.  Once again I send mental thank you-s to my father for the Y chromosome.   
 
As I think about it I’m looking forward to so many things, so many that it requires a list
 
I’m looking forward to having everyone see my new adopted home (my home heart will always belong to Seattle).  Northampton is cool too.
I’m looking forward to having a pint with Larry.  
I’m looking forward to Jack in a little tux.
I’m looking forward to getting Shawn to lie down again on the old Futon (I think the body imprint has lasted this long)
I’m looking forward to telling Sr. Ann that there’s only Coke and no Pepsi at the reception (take that mid-westener!!!)
I’m looking forward to Siobhan meeting more of my family
I’m looking forward to meeting more of Siobhan’s family
I’m looking forward to having Deron point out numerous, numerous times, that we’re three hours ahead
I’m looking forward to Mom speaking French to strangers
I’m looking forward to and also a bit scared of Jeff’s toast
I’m looking forward to locking Siobhan down before she realizes how much better she could do  
 
Well that’s just some of the stuff I’m looking forward to.
 
Thanks for listening.  I’ll try to be more active in the posting.  
 
-Mark

------ End of Forwarded Message

Friday, September 18, 2009

Red Dwarf Back to Earth

So I've obviously been out of the loop lately. It appears there was a new Red Dwarf created in 2009. Three episodes. I found them on YouTube. Enjoy!


Part 1


Part 2


Part 3


Part 4


Part 5


Part 6


Part 7


Part 8


Part 9

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Jack's night time routine is a well honored tradition at our house. Bath time, then PJ's, then some milk, read books with Mom & Dad, brush teeth (he does very well), then say good night to Chocolate Bear and Buddy (stuffed animals), then rock to sleep in the rocker with Daddy as Mom & Daddy sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. It works and it makes us happy.

This last weekend we took off Jack's crib rail. It was one of those moments that we sweated because it could go so wrong. As parents we love our son, and we love him a lot when he goes to bed without a fuss. Like most milestones with Jack, he took it in stride. He loves being able to get into his bed all by himself. He takes a little bit more to settle down now, but all in all it is going well.

There was one nap this past weekend where he got out of bed. I let him move around the room and when he started to get a little rambunctious again it happened. I channeled the force that is my own father, I opened the door, locked Jack with a "Father Stare of Disapproval" and said in my best John Moran voice, "Jack. No more screwing around. Nap time."

The look he gave me was priceless. He was actually surprised to hear me say that. The best part was that it worked. He got up, got in bed, laid down and took his nap. I just about pee'ed myself.

With Jack climbing into bed on his own though I don't get the chance to rock him to sleep. I really actually enjoy it. I joke with my team at work that I have moments of profound clarity while rocking him to sleep. That usually translates into work for us to do, but it is profound work I tell ya.

Tonight he wanted to be rocked. When we started singing Twinkle Twinkle Jack joined us in singing. It was priceless.

Jack sang along. The lyrics we sing are below. The items in Red are the parts he sings. Bolded ones he sings a bit more loudly. Adorable.

Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are!
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky!

Then the traveler in the dark,
Thanks you for your tiny spark,
He could not see which way to go,
If you did not twinkle so.

The hardest part about putting Jack to sleep is that after doing so I'm completely wasted and tired myself. The fact that I'm up writing this is amazing. Also, just saying Twinkle Twinkle now makes me yawn.

Night, Night
Jeff

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Jack's Daycare

Jack had his last day in the Waddler Room at daycare (Waddler being what they call kids between infants and toddlers). He and a few friends are graduating to the Toddler room. His PEPS friend Marin, also at the same daycare will join him. Also his PEPS buddy Calvin will be attending and joining Jack and Marin. We are very excited.

Lavinia and I have been very happy with his daycare. We will really miss his teacher Kathy as she has been tremendous for Jack and for us. We stopped by Friday and took some pictures that I posted in the zenfolio account. Enjoy! Ryland and Lauren are the two in the pictures with him and will be joining him in the Toddler room. Together they are terribly cute and I'm sure cause some trouble like a pack of dogs.

Here's a neat little picture of Jack, Lauren and Ryland around Lavinia while she reads a book in the room. It reminds me a of U2 Album Cover.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009