Daddy Duty

Sleep, Eat, Diaper Change. Repeat.

Hot Potato

JJ’s 6 days short of 9 months and boy has this been a month of growth and skill development. He loves his new skills and is curious to discover everything. Unfortunately, he knows it too as he beams and smiles each time he does something knew (lifting himself up to stand with assistance).

As I’ve documented here, we always knew he’d go down this path like we all do and we even knew it would mean more work. One of the things I failed to anticipate was how hard it is to change the diaper of a wiggly worm. As soon as we put him down to be changed, he flips himself over. Flip him back over and hold him down and he uses all 20 pounds of his might to try to flip around again. It’s a never ending battle because he then thinks it’s a game and just smiles the whole time.

That’s one of the few downsides. The other downside is the increased tears.  We’re like faucets at the moment because with each skill he learns, we fast forward 18 years and see our little boy leaving us. Driving, Dating, Marriage. It’s all coming up. I know, I know, focus on the now and not dwell on the sad/happy future. However, we can’t help it. I’ve said it publically and I’ll say it again, there may never be a girl worthy of taking our JJ away considering all of the love, care, and attention we have put into him. I certainly hope that little baby X, wherever she may be, is loved and cared by her parents just as much as we love and care for JJ.

So, what’s he up to nowadays?

  • He can pick himself up with the aid of anything (a cabinet, your foot, the bed frame, etc)
  • He still likes to jump and hop, but he’s too tall for the tallest adjustment.  That doesn’t stop him though as he now just bends his knee to a full 90 degrees to facilitate jumping by shortening himself.
  • He loves to run in his wheel walker thing. He’ll chase us around the living room and kitchen in his little car thing. His turns could use a little work, but he’s getting there.
  • His attention span for light up and musical toys is pretty short. It’s about a minute or less a toy before he moves on.
  • We have a storage ottoman that has a cover that comes off. One day, while crawling, he put himself on the cover and slid around the floor. He realized that he was able to move faster than crawling with this method and loves it.  
  • He’s eating all manner of fruits thanks to Mom’s steaming and Magic Bullet.
  • He has more patience for books now. He’s ripped a couple of pages here and there, but is getting more excited about the flipping motion and looking at the words and pictures.
  • “Achoo” “Du, Du, Du",” Big smiles, and other random noises make him smile at the moment.
  • He doesn’t appear to be ticklish on his feet at the moment, but his upper thighs are particularly ticklish.
  • He isn’t scared of strangers yet and loves attention.  He doesn’t mind if you’re doing something else so long as he can see you and you respond if he calls you.  If you hide and don’t respond, he doesn’t like it.
  • He doesn’t kick during bath time anymore.  Bath time is just another opportunity to stand up…naked.
  • He may still be teething. His (comparatively") wonderful sleep schedule has been changed by some random crying fits in the middle of  the night.  We suspect more teeth, but sure hope it’s not something else.
  • Thankfully, he hasn’t really gotten sick.  The one time we had a high temperature was during the first round of shots, but we were slow in administering acetaminophen. We’ve learned since then.

OK, that’s it for now! More pix:

 

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Smiling, Exploring, and Getting a Lil Sneaky

My smiley 8.5 month old is still as cute as ever. This kid smiles and laughs a lot! My wife and him are my greatest joys when I get home from work. I’d like to think he smiles because (1) he’s happy and well taken care of and (2) he’s surrounded by people genuinely happy to see him that smile to him.

In saying that, there are no shortage of people(some of my (very distant) family included) who then go and stare at him like a science experiment without smiling at him. They then matter of factly report that he’s not smiling. Look idiot, he’s the greatest mood monitor on the planet. If you look grumpy, he’s not going to smile at you. Furthermore, he’s not a circus side show to smile for your amusement. To settle this smiley debate, here’s some proof:

2012-08-17 16.15.212012-08-15 17.05.582012-08-13 17.59.16COPY, safe to delete after Jenn sees it (54)COPY, safe to delete after Jenn sees it (53)COPY, safe to delete after Jenn sees it (1)COPY, safe to delete after Jenn sees it (38)2012-08-03 19.36.472012-08-03 19.36.392012-08-03 19.36.342012-08-03 19.29.22

So, he smiles!  Seeing those 4 teeth and a chuckle just lights up my world! About a week ago, Claire and I had a great shock and surprise. JJ lifted himself up in his crib and was standing while hanging on to the top bar.  We had just put him down for bed and went to turn off the night light and turned around and saw a little head peeking at us. He was so excited!

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He crab walked side to side to see the different views. This was literally one of our happiest moments as it’s a testament to the fact that he’s really growing up fast and that our time together is short.To get sappy on you, it kills Claire and me to think about him growing up. We all know it’s the parents’ pain, but you put everything in to your child(ren) only to have them “leave” and repeat the process. Cue: Circle of Life music.

The memories, faces, laughs, and experiences right now are so precious. Everything is new and fun to him and I just love accompanying him as he explores. I can already see his attention span is getting shorter as he wants to explore more.  When he used to play with a given toy for 10 minutes, it’s now down to 2 as he’s “mastered” it and is ready for something else. If we don’t give him something, he’s content to go find his own activities. DANGER DANGER! This reminds me of when I was little. I used to wonder how my mom always seemed to know what I was up to. If I spilled something or was scheming up plan A or B, she always knew it.  I’d constantly wonder how she could read my mind.

As it turns out, broadcasting passes or plays in sports, you can see what JJ’s thinking. When I get down on the ground, I see the world through his eyes and see what looks interesting. Tearing plants leave, light sockets, and shaggy carpet all look pretty interesting. He’s getting smarter though. He’s learned to be more sly. In the past, if he wanted to try something, say a book, in his mouth, his mouth would be wide open while he tried to figure out how to lift the said book to his mouth. We’d then have ample time to tell him NO and save the book from being gnawed on.

Now, he’ll pick up the book as if he’s going to “read” it and ever so slowly move it closer and closer to his mouth. As soon as he feels you aren’t paying attention, he’ll put it right into his mouth and go to town.

That sensing can be attributed to his new observation skills. He’ watches us do everything and will try to mimic  the motion or action. From typing to eating, to hand washing etc, he’s watching and constantly mimicking.

Hold on, so the word is mimic with no k, but, when you add –ing, it adds a K?  Who knew? Thank you spell check.

OK, back to JJ. Sleeping is going pretty well right now. In case I hadn’t mentioned it, we moved JJ out of our room about a week or so ago. We had tried eons ago with minimal success and he’s doing much better now that he’s older. For the non-parents out there, you’ll here all sorts of different times are right. Some parents are able to separate from the baby right after birth and others are probably still in the same room until 18, but at 8 months it’s finally working for us. Admittedly, it’s later than I would have liked, but that’s one of the main rules of parenting, what you like and plan usually are not how things end up Smile! I can’t help but wonder if part of the reason he’s so happy is because he’s near us so much.

P.S.Since he’s moving faster now, it’s getting harder to take steady cell phone pictures. I might have to carry the big DSLR around to capture his moments in action.

P.P.S. Having grown up in the internet age, I never understood people who would say, “Once I get home, no computers, I get enough at work.” I used to think, how do they live and computers aren’t such a bad thing. Something has changed. I’ve become the no computer outside of work hours guy. Part of it is that I’d rather play with JJ than read a blog or blog.  The other part is that my new job involves some extreme excel, map manipulation, database massaging, and a seemingly never ending stream of Outlook meetings and conference calls. Again, not an excurse as to why the posts are so infrequent here, but I’ve evolved and am no longer as data hungry. When I’m home, I veg out and spend time with my family. Here’s a peak at some geo-marketing I’m working on

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He’s not being tickled. He’s just reacting to the doo dooo dooo sound!
Look at his little hand scratching the wall!!!
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4 Teeth Meetings

JJ just turned 8 months on the 3rd and I’m equally amazed I have an 8 month old and that I’m a parent at all. I’ll admit there’s been a time or two where I’ve prepared to walk into a store/restaurant only to be reminded that I forgot to get JJ out of the car. Whoops! I have lived more of my life without him than with him, right? I promise it only happens when I’m either really hungry or there’s a huge sale going on. Smile

Let’s start with an update:

  • NEW SKILLS: Shaking and banging toys together, turning side-to-side, lifting himself up in the bathtub, standing as long as he’s holding onto something/somebody, going from sitting to crawling;
  • FAVORITE ACTIVITIES: The above; Sucking on his hands; Jumping; Eating his Donuts Rings and putting his arms through them; Singing with Mommy; Reading with Grandma;Flying with Daddy; Video chatting; Cell phones; Laughing; Trying to Eat and Taste EVERYTHING
  • DIAPER SIZE: still wearing 3’s, but we added in the swimming diaper a couple of months ago. For those without babies, a swimming diaper is supposed to keep everything in the diaper even in the pool and costs about 5X a regular diaper. Not that it’s been tested, but I do wonder how well they work in a real “situation.” I’m tempted to strap 4 regular diapers to him and would bet we’d have equal if not better “protection.”
  • CLOTHES SIZE: 6-12 months depending on brand. With the increased movement, he’s lost weight, but is getting taller.  There was a time when his thighs wouldn’t fit in his Bumbo chair, but they’ve slimmed down and fit in again!
  • WORDS: Ma ma, Da da, Sssssuh.  He goes between all of these. Sometimes he’ll switch words throughout the day and other days he’ll only say 1 and keep repeating it over and over.
  • DROOL: None
  • DANGERS: Falling and knocking things over. We’re in the process of baby-proofing the house as walking is right around the corner.
  • SICKNESS/RASHES/ETC: None
  • SLEEP: When he first started teething, it was getting rough (~month ago). We were continually waking up to rub gel on his gums as he was obviously in pain. Within the past week, we’ve re-established his sleeping schedule and he’s getting upwards of 12 hours with a feeding break in between along with a long and short nap. Plenty of time for his little brain to rest.
  • FOOD: Claire is still pumping and will probably continue until at least 1 year old. We’ve added in mushed up fruits, oatmeal cereal, rice cereal, and applesauce into his diet.

If you haven’t met JJ or haven’t seen him in a while, he’d like to see you. He loves seeing people and is still very comfortable around “strangers.” As an aside, 2012 is appearing to be a really neat year for reunions.  I’ve seen more than 2 handfuls of my high school friends from Texas, college friends, and other friends I’ve met over the years.  We’ve been in touch in some form or fashion (usually Facebook/Text), however, this year, they’re all visiting Vegas! It’s been great!

One of our close friends just gave birth to a 7 pounder and I couldn’t believe how small she was. My “oldtimer” mind is at a loss when trying to remember JJ that small. I see the difference in pictures, but seeing him everyday makes it hard to tell the difference in person. When we went to visit her, her 9 month old niece was there and JJ was just fascinated with her. They both had 4 teeth and it was so cute watching them interact together. Below is a picture of the friend who just gave birth. We saw her the day before she delivered! I’d love to post a pic of the 9 month old, but that photo isn’t on my computer yet.

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NERD RANT, Feel free to skip this section if you’re not interested in technology. So, I love a service called dropbox. I use it to sync my files across computers (home laptop/desktop/work computer/phone). The latest feature I’ve fallen in love with is where it automatically uploads every photo I take on my phone to my computer wirelessly over the air.  I don’t need a cable, I can’t forget, and it’s easy, automatic and free. I can then get on a computer and see all of my phone photos to either organize, edit, upload ,etc. The reason I bring it up is that on my Android phone, it’s as easy as I just described.  I take the photo, it uploads, I find it in a folder on my computer.  However, on my IPhone, the App just sucks.  It only uploads in batches and seems to take forever. Hence, when I’m trying to post a pic I took yesterday, it hasn’t uploaded yet so I can’t share it with you.  Sure, I could go find a cable and upload it, but I’m lazy.  Android totally wins on this one.

OK, back to JJ. I’m going to go out on a limb and guess he’s left handed.  I’m not sure yet, but I see him reach with his left a lot so that’s my first guess, but only time will tell. 

My new after work activity is to take JJ swimming. He’s always liked being in the water (bath time) and swimming has been a real joy for both of us to play, exercise, and have fun. With any luck, we have a future Swimming Gold Medalist in the house.

In the mean time, Claire and I just medaled in the shopping Olympics. As I mentioned 2 weeks ago, Claire and I have been waiting to go to the As They Grow Flash Consignment sale held this weekend. The short of it is we spent $350. We heard the high was $1,400.We went the 2nd of 5 days and then followed up on the 5th day as many of the items were further marked an additional half off.

Consigning is a great way to make some $ from your unwanted stuff without going the Craigslist/EBay route. However, I really think the key to the success of this event is the short time line creating urgency for buyers and sellers alike.  Literally 10’s of 1000’s of items change hands in a weekend with 3 pre-sale days.  As JJ gets older, I look forward to selling this stuff and letting a younger tike enjoy it at a heavily discounted price.

As we already have a lot of clothes and hardware (strollers/crib/bouncers/etc), our main focus was really the toys. He now has all manner of toys that blink, make noise, hop, jump and skip around to his amusement.  I’d say the retail value of what we bought is probably 2 to 4X what we paid so it was a great event even if we did spend more than we thought we would. Isn’t that how it always is?

Time for some pictures:

2012-08-05 14.13.542012-08-04 14.54.262012-08-04 14.36.532012-08-04 13.40.422012-08-04 12.52.332012-08-04 12.51.542012-08-04 12.51.102012-08-03 17.08.282012-08-01 17.16.522012-07-26 19.26.562012-07-24 11.28.132012-07-24 11.27.482012-07-22 12.35.522012-07-21 22.48.202012-07-21 17.56.172012-07-21 17.54.412012-07-21 17.36.26IMG_0476IMG_0474IMG_0473IMG_04672012-07-15 12.54.342012-07-13 11.29.492012-07-13 11.28.452012-07-13 11.28.24-1jj duck face at wynn

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