Saturday, December 19, 2009

Picture Summary

According to my Picasa account, it's been 6 weeks since I've posted new pictures. In that 6 weeks, we've gone to Disney, seen Kaylani start walking, watched Kaylani make a complete mess out of spaghetti, went to our first holiday party of the year, bought a Christmas tree, and even saw our first snowfall! And of course, we've done so much more than that too that I can't even remember.

What I do remember is that I just posted a bunch of pictures to Kaylani's album today, so check them all out (they're in 3 separate albums). I've included a summary of our last 6 weeks below, but there are still more to come from Disney so stay tuned!








Friday, December 18, 2009

Christmas "shopping"

I refuse to go shopping on the day after Thanksgiving, or "Black Friday" as they call it. It would probably be really beneficial to get everything done almost a month in advance of Christmas, but I just won't bring myself to do it. You'd think that sitting here now, 1 week before Christmas, with only 3 out of 30 presents bought, I'd reconsider or feel regret for not having gone on "Black Friday"...but I don't. Even if Christmas shopping has changed for me...forever.

A few years ago, I became an avid Amazon Christmas shopper. It was just easier. Amazon had most things I needed, and with free 2 day shipping on Prime, I was losing money by not shopping on Amazon. But no matter how easy Amazon made Christmas shopping, it just didn't feel like Christmas without a trip or three to the mall. Christmas was about walking around, looking at decorations, having coffee/hot cocoa, and walking out with a handful of shopping bags and feeling accomplished for getting everything you didn't/couldn't buy off of Amazon. That's what Christmas was.

Christmas shopping with a baby who has just learned to walk is nothing like Christmas shopping with a 6 week old in stroller or Christmas shopping without kids at all. It adds a whole new complexity to the existing mall/parking madness, sale crowds, and decision making. Now, we have to split up. One of us has to follow Kaylani around and pick her up every time she falls/sits on the disgusting public mall floors while the other tries to find something on our list. One of us has to entertain her and distract her so we can walk between stores with her in our arms instead of at a snails pace due to her tiny, newly walking legs. One of us has to give her snacks so she stays in lines with us instead of walking around and grabbing all types of things that she shouldn't be touching/breaking. And when that's all done, both of us need to rest.

We spent 3.5 hours at the mall last night and came out with 2 presents. 2. That's less than 1 an hour. And if you take out the hour we spent trying to feed Kaylani and eat dinner ourselves, its still less than 1 present an hour. Add in the fact that we left the mall around 8:30, or after Kaylani's bedtime/cranky period and you get 2 exhausted parents.

So this is Christmas shopping for the foreseeable future for us. Today Mommy will try and tackle the malls by herself with Kaylkani, and tonight we'll try and do the rest by Amazon. Maybe we won't have to make a dreaded trip to the mall the Sunday before Christmas. But if we do, at least now we know what we're up against. For some reason, I'm not sure that makes things any better...but at least it feels like Christmas. And when it comes down to it, its still the best Christmas ever.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Walker, Toddler Baby

Remember last week when we got all excited that Kaylani walked 10 steps on her own? Well forget that! Now, she's walking 10 blocks on her own! Okay, maybe not 10 blocks yet, but she did take a nice stroll around the house last night. The pure excitement on her face when she walks is priceless. Sure it's a little nervewracking watching her walk near walls, corners, and bear traps, but it's still a pretty amazing thing to see her up on all 2's finally.

I've got to head to work now so it's up to Mommy to keep our new walking baby out of trouble today. For the rest of you, just sit back and relax and check out Kaylani's first walking video! And if you have a second, feel free to shoot Mommy your condolences as her life just got a bit more active with Kaylani!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Kaylani Show

Years ago, I used to wake up and immediately turn on the TV. Most of the times it was Sportscenter, but sometimes it was the news (lie), Saved By The Bell, or some other show that I should probably be ashamed of watching. Luckily, TV time in the morning has all but disappeared so I have nothing to be ashamed of. However, its been replaced by a 7" video monitor.

I've written a few times about how much we love our video monitor. It let's us know Kaylani is sleeping, or standing, or screaming just to scream instead of thinking something is wrong with her. But best of all, it let's me see her for a few minutes before I head off to work. Since Kaylani is sleeping anywhere from 11-13 hours at night, it means that my glimpse of her in the morning is usually of her sleeping, which is better than nothing at all. And on some days, like today, I get a real treat.

This morning, she started making noise around 7:20am. I was just about to hop in the shower when I heard her talking (to herself, her monkey, her dolls on the wall, or maybe her blanket). 10 minutes later, she was still talking. Not crying, not fussing, but just talking. Sitting in her crib, holding her blanket, and talking. Every few minutes she would stand up and look around. Then she'd sit down, rub her eyes, and lay back down...talking the whole time. Sometimes there would be a moment of silence and I'd think she was sleeping. But then she'd pop up and do it all over again.

Right now, she's standing up and holding her monkey over the edge and making monkey noises. I'm sure she's saying "come get me or I'll drop the monkey...and don't think I won't do it!" I've still got a little bit before I have to leave for work, so who am I to let the monkey drop. Time to catch the live version of the Kaylani show.

Friday, December 11, 2009

You're cut off

Tonight was the night. For the first time in 13 months and 3 days, Kaylani has been cut off officially. Tonight, Kaylani went to bed without nursing. Last week, she went to bed without nursing, but that was more like passing out. Tonight, she "voluntarily" went to bed without nursing. And I had front row seats to see it all unfold.

The plan involved Mommy being out of the house for the entire bedtime routine. The thought behind this was that if Kaylani even saw her at any point, she'd freak out...more so. So after dinner, Mommy said good night as Kaylani and I went upstairs for bath time. To make sure she was nowhere close, she left completely to get some holiday shopping down around town. That meant it was just Daddy and Kaylani in the house at bedtime. Woah.

I had no idea what to expect besides a lot of crying. This was all new for all 3 of us, so the only thing we anticipated was a lot of crying. Bath time went well with only a little crying (but that was because she slipped in the tub and splashed water on her face). Getting dressed went by without any crying. We even got through Goodnight Gorilla and Hush Little Polar Bear without any crying. But when it was time to flick off the lights and close the door, with no Mommy in sight, Kaylani knew something was up.

When the lights went on, the tears and crying started. She wiggled, she squirmed, and did everything she could to get down so she could open the door and look for Mommy. She screamed louder in case Mommy was still somewhere within the neighborhood and could hear her. She pushed herself sideways in my arms to see if that was an easier way out. She even did the hands and arms over the head trick to see if she could slide out. But I had a good grip on her and was determined to get her sleepy in my arms.

After 10 minutes of swaying, bouncing, walking, and singing songs that I was making up on the spot ("good night sweetheart well its time to sleep. lay down your head and don't make a peep. Close your eyes and drift away. Tomorrow will be time to play"), she started rubbing her eyes more frequently and screaming a little bit less. As I got closer to the crib, she pushed away from me which meant it was time to put her down. This is where the nerves kicked in. Was she going to scream and cry for hours? Would sleep training work? Was it mean? Should I just give up and pick her up again? All questions that I didn't have the answer to.

After her standing up and me kissing her and laying her back down 5 times, I decided it was time to leave the room. After a check-in with Mommy to give her the update, I went back in after 5 minutes to comfort Kaylani a little bit. Fortunately she was still laying down (which was a good sign). After a few "shhhs" and a few rubs of her belly (which she pushed my hand away from...another good sign), I kissed her on the forehead and left the room again. The next 6 minutes were agonizing as I stared at the monitor and listened to her cry while pulling at her ears...but still laying down. And then it happened. At 7 minutes. Silence.

She was quiet. She was laying on her side, with both arms on her left ear, but she was quiet. At the next "check-in" 3 minutes later, I didn't even go in because she was definitely asleep. Hands still on her ear, but definitely asleep. That was it. I survived. No, WE survived. And after texting Mommy to let her know, she responded with "I can breathe again!" Truer words were never spoken.

So night one of no nursing went relatively well. 13 minutes of crying in her crib plus 10 in my arm before that? Not too bad. Could've been a lot worse. Funny enough, yesterday she cried for 35+ minutes...and that was just a normal bedtime WITH nursing. Maybe this whole non-nursing thing isn't going to be so bad. In fact, I'm thinking it's going to be a real good thing. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. We'll see how the rest of the weekend goes first.

And speaking of the weekend, for the first time in a LONG time, happy Fatherhood Friday! Don't forget to check out the other posts at Dad-Blogs. Even though I haven't written for them in a long time, they're still there going strong and doing great, so head on over! That's where I'm going now too.

Fatherhood Friday at Dad Blogs

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Holy Cow(seat)!

At Kaylani's 1 year doctor appointment, she weighed in at a whopping 17lbs (2nd percentile) and 29". While she's technically underweight, she's completely healthy. Other than recommending we try to fatten her up a bit with yogurt, lard, and butter soaked yogurt with lard (kidding), they said she was fine and to keep doing what we're doing since she actually eats a lot. Both Mommy and me were (and still are...kinda) both "skinny", so its possible she just picked up our metabolism. While not a bad thing, it does mean that we didn't get the green light to flip her around in her carseat yet.

Kaylani actually doesn't mind facing backwards. She goes in alright, stares at us through her jungle mirror, plays with her toys (or shoes and socks), and looks out the window. She even falls asleep just fine still when we drive her around. The only problem is that she was getting too long for her infant carseat, which meant her legs were pushing up against the seat. Since we had already bought her convertible carseat, we figured we'd at least install that, even if it was backwards.

We bought a Britax Marathon carseat in none other than the Cowmooflage pattern. It installed just fine, with the super convenient latch system. It's definitely bigger than her old one, but Kaylani seems to like this one too. But for us, there are 2 main problems. First problem is that there's no longer a shade over her head. Since it sits up straighter, that also means that light can get in from both sides. And with a shade only on her window, she gets blinded whenever the sun is on her left. I'm thinking we need to buy another shade, because its getting difficult to find routes where the sun doesn't shine on the left side.

The other problem is that the cowseat is anchored into the car. Gone are the days of having her pass out on the way home from somewhere and easily transferring her into the house in her carseat. Instead, we play a game of chance to see if she'll stay asleep when we pick her up. And like gambling, or the lottery, our luck (and our chances) aren't good.

The cowseat says we shouldn't turn her around to face forward until she hits 20lbs. At the pace Kaylani's going, we'll be able to turn her around when she turns 2, if not a little later. Maybe she fattened up a little bit while we were at Disney (I know I did) and we'll be able to turn her around sooner. It's supposed to make a big difference for her since she'll actually be able to see where we're going. But since backwards facing car seats are safer for her, she'll just have to deal for now. And if she doesn't like it, well then she better start gulping down her butter soaked yogurt with lard. At least, that's what my advice would be.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The End Is Near...

So the time has finally come. What we thought might have happened at 6 months, 9 months, and then at a year, has finally come. It's been 13 months in the waiting, and now our wait is no more. The only problem is, we have no idea what to do. We have no idea how to do it. And we have no idea if it's going to work.

This weekend, Kaylani is going to go to bed without nursing...for the rest of her life. To this day, it's only happened once, and that was 3 days ago in Orlando and it was only because Kaylani passed out on the bus ride home. She was so tired that she let us change her clothes and transfer her into her pack and play without even waking up. Something tells me that this weekend will be nothing like that.

Kaylani's pediatrician recommends that Mommy nurses Kaylani for as long as she can, but with Kaylani having 6+ teeth now, nursing has become far from enjoyable. We actually meant for Kaylani to stop nursing right at her one year birthday, but with guests, holidays, and vacation, the right time never came about. This weekend though, is the right time. This weekend is the first weekend we've had home without distractions for almost a month. This weekend is when I can be around to put Kaylani to sleep without Mommy. This weekend is it. So...what now?

My gut feeling is that this isn't going to go well. Kaylani is going to cry. She's going to scream. She's going to figure out that it's just me and her reading a book. She's going to realize something is up when she's drinking her bottle with me instead of nursing from Mommy. She's going to find it odd that she's brushing her teeth after her bottle instead of right after bathtime like normal. And most of all, she's going to freak out when Mommy kisses her on the head and then leaves just the two of us in the room.

It might not be that different from sleep training I guess, except this time she might not be drowsy, but not asleep. This time, she'll be on alert, and when I put her in her crib, it'll kick in that she didn't nurse. Hopefully we can do 5 min, then 10 min more, then 15 min more without giving in and sending Mommy in to nurse. Hopefully that's all it takes, because if it goes on longer, who knows what we'll be able to do. And then, let's just hope that we don't have to go through it for several days/weeks in a row.

So D-Day is 2 days away from now. Any suggestions? Or better yet, anyone want to come babysit while Mommy and Daddy leave the house? No? Just us? Alright, well then I guess we'll see what happens! Wish us luck!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Disney Characters: Friendly or Scary?

When we first got to Orlando, Tio Carlitos and Titi Briseida bought Kaylani an autograph book so that all the characters in the park could sign it for her. Being her first (interactive) trip to Disney, we thought it'd be great to wait in line for a picture and a signature. What we didn't know was how Kaylani would react.

In each line, Primitos Alisha and Rohan would go first and get an autograph, a picture, and give a high five or two to whoever it was we ran into. They got pictures and autographs from Pooh, Eeyore, Tigger, Donald, Goofy, Mickey, Minnie, Chip, Dale, Pluto, Daisy, Lilo, Stitch, and Buzz Lightyear (maybe a few more too). And for each one of those, they had a blast. But when they were done, it was Kaylani's turn.

Kaylani got all of the autographs, which really means that me or Tio Pritesh went to ask for an autograph which didn't feel weird at all. In fact, we both gave a few high fives, got a few hugs, and even snapped a few pictures. And for most of those, Kaylani was right there with us...kinda. Let's say she was in the general vicinity of them and us. A few of them, she was right next to us. And for those few, she screamed, cried, and dug her claws into my arm for fear that one of them might take her away from us. Little did she know that the characters could barely hold a pen, let alone a squirming, crying baby.

After a few of these episodes, we learned our lesson and let Kaylani admire them from afar. Sometimes, we'd distract her and snap a picture with the characters behind her. Other times we let her cry for the picture so she could see how much she enjoyed them when she grows up. And other times, we just let Tio Pritesh get a 3rd autograph for her while we walked around outside the greerting spots.

To be fair, Kaylani was not the only one to act like this. In fact, there were a ton of older kids who were just as afraid of the characters. So, are Disney characters friendly or scary? Right now, I think the answer is scary. We'll see what happens next visit...whenever that is.

In the blink of an eye

You can't avoid sleep. No matter how hard you try, its going to catch up to you. And when it comes to kids, it happens in the blink of an eye.

2 things I learned during our vacation in Florida: 1) Sleep training works, and 2) Kaylani will sleep anywhere if she's tired. I knew sleep training works from our experience at home, but we've never tried it out before. And I knew Kaylani would sleep anywhere, but had only considered anywhere as her stroller or her pack and play. Florida changed everything.

The first night we got here, Kaylani had been awake since 5:30am and took only a 15 minute nap before we got to the hotel. When we finally got her in her pack and play at 9:30pm, we knew it wasn't for the night. And instead of picking her up at midnight, changing her, nursing her, etc, we went for the training. After 5 minutes, I went in and laid her down 3 times (she always stands). 10 more minutes and I did it again. After 15 more minutes, she was down and out, and stayed that way until 7am. The next 4 nights she slept straight through no matter if we put her to bed at 9:30 or 11pm. Sleep training works (as long as everyone with you is okay with the crying for 30 minutes).

It also helps that Kaylani sleeps anywhere. She took at least 1 nap each day in her stroller, and usually another one on Mommy on a bus. But what we found out was that if Kaylani's tired, she'll sleep anywhere. Right now, she's asleep on Mommy on the bus to the airport. 2 days ago, she was asleep on me in the park. 3 days ago she was asleep on Mommy on the bus again. And the tell tale sign was her blinking. Even Primitos Alisha and Rohan gave the sign. They all sit there, straring straight ahead, and blink. They blink and bob their head as they fight a losing battle against sleep. Sometimes they get another burst of energy, but more often than not, they pass out.

Maybe things will all be different when we leave the Disney Magic behind us and get home. In fact, I know they will because Kaylani is going back to her 7 or 8pm bedtime for sure. But what I also know is that we'll be sleep training Kaylani on the first night wherever we go...Disney Magic or not

Monday, December 7, 2009

Disney Adventures

Yesterday, we wrapped up our 3 day Disney park adventure with a character breakfast at O'hana's in the Polynesian, and then a trip to Epcot. And both events were memorable, but probably not for the reasons you might think.

The character breakfast was a family style serving of eggs, biscuits, sausage, bacon, potato wedges, and of course, Mickey shaped waffles. Most of the tables were filled with people and cameras ready to snap pictures of Mickey, Pluto, Lilo, and Stitch, and of each other. Most of them were normal families enjoying Disney magic. Most of them...but not all of them. One family was ready for a lot more, and lucky for us, they were seated right next to us.

This one table was filled with about 16 teenage Columbian girls who clearly were at Disney for the very first time. They didn't just wait for the characters to come to their table, they went after them. And when they got them, they hung on to them. They lined up for multiple pictures and poses each. They screamed like the Beatles just arrived in Japan. They clung to them like they were magnetically drawn to each other. But thatl wasn't the weird part. That, I actually consider fairly normal for Disney. Taking pictures of CHARACTERS is normal.

Apparently, Kaylani was a character. 2 of the girls came over and asked if they could take a picture of our "pretty son" (who was dressed in all pink and a Minnie Mouse dress by the way). After saying yes (awkwardly), the rest of the table looked to see what the commotion was and proceeded to "aww" and "ahhh" over Kaylani. For a while, I thought they were going to line up for pictures, but then Mickey came out and they were gone.

Next came Epcot. We saw Nemo, Innoventions, Simba, and all of the countries in the World Showcase. Normally there's not much excitement in the countries, but Germany provided some. While Tio Pritesh and I were grabbing a beer, Mommy was getting asked a very odd question: "Is your baby adopted?"

Now there's absolutely nothing wrong with adoption, and in fact, Mommy would love to adopt a baby in the future, but that's not the point. The fact that Kaylani does look a lot like me also doesn't matter. The odd part is that it was a complete stranger. Overall, it's just a weird question to ask. Should I go up to someone and ask if that's the mailman's daughter? Or ask if someone's spouse is ugly? Or maybe even if a person was artificially insemenated? While none of them are technically inappropriate (maybe the mailman one), but you still shouldn't ask a stranger any of those.

Anyways, today we're taking it easy with a trip to the pool and to Downtown Disney for some shopping and food. Kaylani's about to wake up from her nap, so back to vacation I go. Let's hope there's not quite as much excitement today!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Who says things change?

Almost a year ago, we came to Disney. Back then, Kaylani was 8 weeks old and spent the entire time in a Bjorn, her stroler, or in Mommy's Maya Wrap. She didn't see anything and she likely didn't pay attention to anything. Well here we are, almost one year later, and its like deja vu all over again.

Right now, we're at Animal Kingdom. If you've never been, Animal Kingdom has all types of exotic animals, a Finding Nemo and Lion King show, and all your favorite characters dressed up in safari gear. It's chock full of fun for everyone. Everyone but Kaylani I guess.

Instead of taking part in all the excitement, Kaylani is sleeping in her stroller. In fact, she's so tired (even though she slept 11 hours last night and only woke up once for 25 minutes), she practuically fell asleep on the bus ride over. Don't get me wrong, imn actually really happy that Kaylani is sleeping. In fact, we had planned most of our day around Kaylani NOT sleeping, which means we have a ton of toys and snacks to keep her busy. But since she's sleeping, our day looks like we might have caught a bit of luck.

Luck is definitely something we need in Disney, and not something I thought we were going to get. Forecast for the next 2 days is mid-60s and 80% chance of rain. All my thoughts that the 80% would just be a passing Florida shower quickly ended when it started pouring the second we entered our card and had the Disney machine take our fingerprint like we were common (yet fancy) criminals.

But the rain doesn't matter since Kaylani's sleeping. The rain ponchos Abuelo bought all of us make the rain not matter also. The umbrella I have (because I'm too cool for a poncho) makes it matter even less too. And the fact that I'm writing this post under an awning while rocking Kaylani back and forth with my elbow or foot definitely doesn't matter. She's sleeping. And that's all that matters.

When she wakes up, we'll show her some real Disney magic. Disney magic in the form of characters, rides, and turkey legs hopefully covered under our Disney dining plan. That's when things will be different. Last year, Kaylani was about the same size as the turkey leg. This year, she'll help me eat it (even though she's still pretty much the same size as the turkey leg).

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Who doesn't need a walker?

We've been holding Kaylani's hand as she learns new things (literally). But now, I think it's time to cut her loose. It's time to let her run free. It's time she learns to stand on her own two feet. And if anyone knows me, you know that I never plan on letting her run free without me nearby. But now, I have no other choice because we've got ourselves an independent walker!

Her first step or two on her own actually happened the day after Thanksgiving. Unlike me, Kaylani wasn't too full to walk for a few days after eating 2 Thanksgiving meals. So up at Yin Yin and Yea Yea's, she cruised to the end of the couch and took two wobbly steps over to me. That was big. In fact, it was huge! But looking back, it was nothing. Nothing compared to today that is!

We arrived at Orlando International and were waiting for the Disney Magical Express to wisk us away to our magical Disney adventure. And since everything Disney related requires a minimum 10 minute wait, we had some time on our hands. And since Kaylani just spent 3 (well behaved) hours on a plane, she wanted to do nothing but hold my finger and walk around. But this time, she let go. She let go and she walked over to Mommy. She walked over to Mommy who was 5 steps away!

So for the next 10 minutes, Kaylani walked back and forth between us all by herself. She made it a full 10 steps to me before she fell down as I kept backing up. To prove she wasn't a one hit wonder, she did it again and again later on at the resort. She still can't make it much past 10 steps, and she still needs a little bit of a ramp up period sometimes, and she still falls on her butt and gets confused, but she's definitely a walker now.

It's great to have Kaylani walking. Sure we might regret it when she's running circles around us, but for now, its another amazing milestone that Kaylani has reached. Now, the only question is whether or not Kaylani learning how to walk right before we spend 5 days in Disney is a good thing, or a really, really bad thing. I'm guessing both...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Sleeping Like a Baby

Math quiz! If I went to sleep 3 hours after my 1 year old does, and woke up 2 hours before she did, how many hours could I sleep? I'm sure the answer would vary greatly for most people with a 1 year old (or any infant/baby/toddler for that matter). For me, the answer is 7. I could get 7 hours of sleep if I went to sleep 3 hours after her, and woke up 2 hours before her. That's how many hours I could get (at least). The real answer is 5. I get 5 hours of sleep each night. So the real question isn't how many hours could I get, but why don't I?

Most people I know would kill for 7 hours of sleep a night (especially parents). They would sign a contract right now signing over their first born for 7 hours of sleep, especially if it was their first born that was making that task impossible. But for me, 7 hours of sleep is apparently too much. In fact, if you did the real math, you would have figured out that I could actually get 12 hours of sleep if I went to bed at the same time as Kaylani, and woke up at the same time as her too (that would of course mean I went to bed at 7pm and woke up at 7am, but that's besides the point). So what's wrong with me? Why am I throwing away anywhere from 2-7 hours of sleep each night? And the other question some parents have asked me is, where do I get this wonderful drug that I give Kaylani each night?

The answer to the second question is easy...Target. Just kidding, I don't give her any drugs (except Infants' Tylenol...but only when she's teething, sick, or tired). The answer to the first question is harder...because I really have no idea. I've been given the gift of sleep and I've chosen to return it for what amounts to unusable store credit. For all her life, Kaylani has been a great sleeper. Whether it was only waking up every 3-4 hours when she was born, to sleeping 11-12 hours straight through now, she's been better than I could have ever imagined. The problem is that for all my life, I've never been a good sleeper.

I'm what you could call a morning and a night person. I'll wake up at 5 or 6am, and could still be going strong at 2am or 3am (sure helped me get through college...and by get through, I mean stay up and play video games while watching TV). I could be up and at the gym (back when I used to go to the gym) at 5am and then close down a bar at 2am. Or more appropriately now, I could be up at 5am checking email and surfing the web, and still up at 11pm checking email and finishing up some work. Something I figured out about 10 years ago was that I just don't need sleep.

For years, I thought that the phrase "sleeping like a baby" was a bunch of BS. Sure they look like Angels when they're quiet and laying there, but it only lasts for a few minutes or hours at a time. And if that were true, then you could say that I used to sleep like a baby. But now that I have Kaylani, the phrase makes a lot more sense to me. I only wish I could really sleep like a baby too.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Stick a fork in it...it's done

What to eat? No problem. We'll feed her anything we're eating. When to eat? Got it. Normal times, with snacks and milk in between. Where to eat? Any highchair will do (any highchair out of the house will do even better). How to eat? Well that depends on the what, when, and where...or her mood.

How to eat is our biggest food related challenge these days. It used to be much simpler. We used to be able to grab a spoon or fork and feed her ourselves. We used to be able to get her to open her mouth and eat when we put the spoon or fork near her mouth. We used to be able to get her to eat a whole meal using just that spoon or fork. We used to not have to say "used to" so much.

A few weeks ago, Kaylani figured out how to feed herself using a spoon or fork. We'd put food on for her, hand it to her, and watch as she ate it all by herself. Then, she'd hand it back to us for more. Sure that was much more work than just feeding her ourselves, but she was eating, she was happy, and she was cooperative. Now, she has taken things to a whole new level. Now, she doesn't want to just feed herself. She doesn't want us to feed her. She doesn't want our help at all. She just turned 1, and now she's completely independent.

Apparently, Kaylani is a pro at feeding herself. She can stab food with her fork, or scoop it up with her spoon, and put it in her mouth all by herself. Wait, I think I forgot to put "thinks she can" in that sentence. I mean, in all fairness, she can do it....every now and then. And if we wanted meal times to last 5 hours instead of 45 minutes, we're sure she could stab or scoop an entire bowl of pasta/fruit/chicken and eat it all by herself. But since we'd prefer to not have her spend entire days stuck in her highchair (well, most of the time), we try to help her eat. The problem is independent Kaylani doesn't want help.

Instead of handing us back her utensil after a few failed attempts at gathering food, she'll clutch it even tighter and move away from us. She'll turn, squirm, put her hand and utensil at her side under the tray, all in an effort to keep it away from us if we try to help her. Then when we back off, she'll go back to pushing her food around the bowl or tray with the fork or spoon.

Don't get me wrong, I love the fact that Kaylani is learning to use her fork and spoon, and I can't wait until she actually masters her hand-eye coordination enough to feed herself. As soon as she's ready, I'm going to give her a knife and let her cut her own food. Heck, might even let her cook for herself too. Might as well since she's a pro at taking pots and pans out of the cabinet already! By the way, in case anyone from child services is reading, I'm just kidding. I wouldn't give her a knife until she turned 2.

When all is said and done, the main thing is that she's eating. After awhile, and if we ask nice enough, she'll let us feed her again, or at least let us guide her hand to help her stab her food. The scary thing is that this is her being independent at age 1. God help me when she's 2, 12, or 22. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to go double my blood pressure medication.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Monkey Business

One of the best parts of my morning is going to get Kaylani out of her crib. Most parents would probably say its the worst part since that usually happens around 5 or 6 am, but since Kaylani's a great sleeper, its usually around 7:15. Waking up and getting her actually isn't the best part. Seeing what she does is.

Some mornings, Kaylani will start talking around 6am, but that doesn't mean she's done sleeping. Most days, she'll fall back asleep for another hour before we know she's done. And how do we know she's done? We know when we look over at her monitor and see her standing there, staring at the door. That's when she's done (or when she screams at us while she's standing there).

But here comes the best part. After going downstairs to get her milk (she's been drinking whole milk for about a month now), I come back up and knock lightly on her door before going in (not because I want to respect her privacy, but so she doesn't freak out and fall over). After she says "papa" (or "mama" on certain days), I turn off her humidifier, turn on a light, and open her blinds. All this time she stands there and watches and listens to me do this. Then comes the best part.

When I walk towards her, she gets down, crawls over to her bedtime monkey, picks it up, stands up, and hands it to me. No idea why, but apparently she thinks its her get out of crib card. Its the best thing ever, and it happens every morning. In fact, it even happens after some of her naps in the pack and play, but instead of bedtime monkey, she hands over naptime doll.

On the days when we don't get her quick enough, we usually find monkey on the floor. Those are the bad days. So to sum up, Kaylani is highly correlated to monkey business, and that's something that is likely to hold for quite awhile I'm afraid.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Happy Birthday Kaylani!!


One year. In my life, one year is nothing. It's only 3% of my entire life, but for Kaylani, today it officially marks 100% of her life. She's one. I have a one year old. Just one year ago, I was writing about how I had a 1 hour old. And here I am now writing about how I have a one year old. Crazy.

What a trip it's been, and I mean that in the best way possible. We've had some hard times when Kaylani wasn't sleeping, or when she was sick, or when we were sick, but for the better part of this year, it's been absolutely great. Kaylani's grown up happy, healthy, and quickly, and so have Mommy and Daddy. Most people talk about how they survived the first year. We didn't just survive...we survived and had a blast doing it. And to celebrate Kaylani's first year, we had ourselves quite the weekend.

If you've been reading along, you already know that we've celebrated every one of Kaylani's monthly birthdays since the day she was born. So it really shouldn't surprise you that for her official one year birthday, we'd have not one, but two celebrations! Yesterday was the first, and I'd say it was pretty good. We invited over all of Kaylani's friends and were glad that most of them could make it. We even invited over our family, and they all did their best to make it too. Yin Yin, Yea Yea, Bat Bat, Auntie Shannon, Connor, and Zoe were here, and so were Titi Glendalys, Abuela, Alisha, and Rohan! Add to that 7 more of Kaylani's friends, their parents, and Padrino Tim and Meredith, and you have yourselves one rocking one year old party!

Not only did Kaylani get a ton of great presents, but she also got her own cake! We bought a 1/2 sheet cake for all the guests, and knew it was going to be way too much. Our actual thought was that Kaylani would dig her hands into the entire cake, and whatever was left, we would serve. Little did we know that Kayalni would (unwillingly) put her hand in the cake, then freak out. Who knew my little girl would be a neat freak?

To top off her birthday weekend, we went to the farm on an unseasonal 70 degree day (in November??) for some pizza, animals, and tractors, then came home to have dinner and more cake. This time, Kaylani got her very own cupcake which she made a bigger mess with. Maybe she was just shy with 20+ people staring at her messy hand because tonight, she had no problems ripping apart a cupcake and eating it too.

Anyways, now Kaylani is sound asleep, and hopefully will stay sound asleep even though she's had a ton of cake and cupcake in the last 24 hours. There was so much more than went on this weekend (like her teacher from Music Together coming to put on a show, and a pinata, and everything else), but I don't need to write about that. Instead, you can check out the 130 pictures I just posted. Only 100 of them are from her birthday. The other 30 are from the couple of days before her birthday, so check them out. And if you want to see a video of Kaylani and her cupcake tonight, check out YouTube (or just scroll down!)

Let's hope that Kaylani's 2nd year is just as good as her first. And if the first was any indication, then I think we're all gonna be just fine. Happy Birthday Kaylani!!! We love you!


Sunday, November 1, 2009

Trick and Treat!


So today's the first day of November. It's also the day after Halloween. And it's also exactly one week before Kaylani's 1st birthday. Oh, and it's also the day after we had to set our clocks back an hour for daylight savings. That's a pretty busy day if you ask me, and we haven't even gotten into the details yet.

In the spirit of Halloween, I'm going to do a little version of trick or treat, but instead of the OR, I'm going to do trick AND treat. You see, the trick is that it looks like I'm going to write a real post for a change...but I'm not. The treat is that I've posted over 125 new pictures in 2 albums (updated the PR Week 50, and added weeks 51 and 52). It's definitely a treat because there are a ton of great pictures from Mommy and Kaylani's trip to Puerto Rico, our family trip to the farm, and also Halloween! If you haven't figured it out yet, Kaylani was Nemo (and yes, we know Nemo is a boy but who could pass up on a giant fluffy fish costume). We thought it'd be perfect for a cold October day, so who knew it'd be 70+ degrees and Kaylani would be sweating every time we put her in!

Anyways, check out her latest albums and enjoy the pictures. As an added treat, here's a video of Kaylani crawling in her Nemo costume. Priceless! Man, I love Halloween...for babies. Stay tuned for more posts to come (trust me, I've got a lot of stuff to write about...like shoes in the car, standing, kitchen safety, birthday preparations, and milk)! All that and more, coming soon to a blog right here.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

No Time

Time is something most people can't get enough of. Whether its more time to work, play, or sleep, you could always use more time. Unfortunately, lately I haven't had enough time to do any of those 3, and that's a problem.



Ever since Mommy and Kaylani got back from PR, my time has been taken up. Unfortunately for all 3 of us, not nearly enough time was taken up by the 3 of us. Most of my time has been taken up by work. Whether its having to leave for work before Kaylani wakes up, or getting home after Kaylani goes to bed, it all means that my time with her has been limited. Add working after I get home to that, and that means my time with Mommy has also been limited.



To make matters worse, its Yankees playoffs time, which means any "free" second I have I'm also trying to watch the game on TV (or in person if its at home). There's clearly a priority issue there, but to me, that's a short term issue because baseball goes away in less than 2 weeks.



What it all comes down to is that there's just not enough time to go around right now, but I'm trying to make the best of it. Kaylani and Mommy have been great at sticking with me as I try to juggle all my hours, so I'm thankful that they're understanding (they'll be more thankful when baseball goes away). Its important to me to find time for them, so I vow to do that starting now. I also vow to start blogging more again because that's an important thing too.



What I'm trying to say is I'm going to find time for everything. Some way, some how, time will not be an excuse. But if anyone knows how to stop or extend time, I'm all ears!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Adjusting to Home

They're back! Finally, my girls are home! At around 7pm, I saw both my girls for the first time in over a week. You know that person who stands outside security impatiently waiting to catch the first glimpse of the person(s) they're waiting for and is pacing around and craning their neck over people? Yeah, that was me. Noone ever wants to be "that person", but whatever, it was worth it.

Unfortunately for me, my excitement didn't quite translate over to Kaylani. It took her a few minutes, but she eventually cracked a small smile. And when I took her out of her stroller, it took her another minute or so to stop trying to go to Mommy, and then another minute to stop trying to cry (never really a full cry, just looked like she was going to). It was kinda sad to not be "wanted" by my baby, but in her defense, she's sick right now.

Poor Kaylani got sick on her last day in Puerto Rico. She woke up this morning with a runny nose and a phlegmy cough. Maybe she caught it because she stayed up late to watch the Yankees win in 13 innings (oh wait, that was me). Either way, sick Kaylani, traveling Kaylani, and "new" place Kaylani don't all go together. After a 30 minute nap on the ride home and a yogurt for dinner, she finally seemed to really remember me during storytime/bedtime. I even got a kiss blown to me during good night, and a smile from her before she started to nurse.

Tomorrow's another day and I'm sure we'll be back to normal. Sure wish I didn't have to work, but once I get back, it's Daddy-Daughter time. Hopefully she won't be sick anymore. But if she is, we'll make it work. Whatever she is, she's home, and that's all that matters to me.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

20 Pictures = 20,000 Words


If one picture is worth 1,000 words, then 20 pictures is 20,000 words. So instead of trying to type up 20,000 words, I've decided to just post the 20 pictures that Mommy and Kaylani have been sending me every day from PR for the last week. Tomorrow, my girls come home and I can't wait. So until they get here and I can start taking pictures myself, here are pictures from Kaylani's week in PR. I bet you can feel the heat just from looking through them! And for all of you going through the start of winter right now...try not to be too jealous!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Phone Home

This week has been a particularly rough week for me without Kaylani and Mommy. Luckily, work has kept me so busy that I've barely had a chance to think about anything else (did I really just say luckily about that?). A better luckily usage would be for the phone.



To keep in touch with my family, we try to talk on the phone 2x a day (morning and night). Usually its just Mommy and me talking about our plans for the day (either future or past depending on the day). But a few times, I'll "talk" to Kaylani too. With Papa on speakerphone, I can say hi, good morning, I love you, or anything else to my little girl so she doesn't forget about me. According to Mommy, her expression is priceless.



For the first minute or so, Kaylani stares at the phone looking very confused. Sure she can hear my familiar voice and callings, but where the heck is he and why is it coming out of that glowing box is what she's thinking. The next few minutes are her saying Papa back to me, or squealing in delight that she can hear my voice. The last couple of minutes are squeals of frustration when Mommy doesn't let her hold the phone (or drool on it).



Luckily, we only have a few more days that we have to live through a phone distance relationship. Sunday, Mommy and Kaylani come home and we can be a family again. Then, Kaylani can stare right at me and wonder what I'm saying instead of at a phone. Can't wait!

Monday, October 12, 2009

It's that time of the year...

I don't cry much. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm not a tough guy in any sense of the word. And most people would probably even call me sensitive, but I don't cry much. On average, I probably cry once a year...twice tops if it's a big year. That's not to say I don't well up when I watch a sappy movie or when I got married, but it's still different then crying. Well yesterday, I guess it was just that time of the year because I cried.

We got to the airport around 8am, well before Mommy and Kaylani's 9:40am flight. The original plan was to check-in, and then grab breakfast before they headed through security. The problem with our plan was that at the Philly airport, or at least in our terminal, there was no place for breakfast outside of security. And since Kaylani was up at 6:30am (against her will) and needed to have breakfast, that meant it was time to say goodbye, about an hour before our original plan.

As I watched Mommy get things ready to go through security, including taking out plastic bags of liquids/food, DVD players, shoes for both her and Kaylani, I started to well up a little bit. I didn't think much of it at the time, but it was just a lot of emotion going through me. Only 5 minutes before that I gave Kaylani a big hug and a kiss, had her blow a kiss back at me and touch my nose, and then gave Mommy a hug and a kiss too. And as I was standing there watching them slowly go through the gate, I started to cry.

I couldn't believe I was crying because it wasn't an emotion that I've ever had to deal with before. It wasn't a situation I've ever had to deal with before. It was something completely different and I just wasn't prepared for it. As soon as they disappeared from site, I started to walk back towards my car and fought to hide my tears. Luckily I didn't walk by anyone because I probably looked a little ridiculous walking alone, holding Kaylani's jacket, and crying.

When I got to the car, I lost it. I sat there for 3 minutes in a complete breakdown. I finally regained my composure, wiped away my tears, and started the car. The rest of the day I spent trying to distract myself. I read the rest of my book that I picked up on the way to Boston earlier in the week. I went to a bar and watched the Red Sox lose, the Giants win, and eventually, the Yankees win too. I did everything I could to distract myself, but nothing helped me from feeling empty inside.

Looking back, I can understand why the emotion came out so strongly. Sure I've gone a few days without seeing Kaylani, but I've never had to say bye before doing so. Usually it's leaving for work before she wakes up, and getting home after she goes to sleep, but I know that it's only for a day or two. When I went to Boston, it was the same, where I left in the morning like normal, and came back 2 nights later as if she just slept through my night and morning. This time, I was saying bye. I was watching her (and Mommy) walk away from me, which is a much harder thing to do, and not something that I'd like to happen often.

Last night, I laid alone in my bed in the dark. There was no glow coming from Kaylani's video monitor. There was no sound coming from Kaylani's audio monitor. There was no one in the room except me. Needless to say, it was lonely. Tonight, it's more of the same. I stayed a little later at work. I had dinner by myself. And now I'm staring mindlessly at the TV at a game that I have little interest in. Mommy and Kaylani are having a great time in Puerto Rico and I did get to speak to her a little bit too, or at least hear her say "Papa" a few times which is enough to hold me over.

It's just the start of the week, but soon enough I'll get to see them again. You never know what you miss until it's gone. Luckily for me, what I miss is coming back in 5 days. 5 days that couldn't come soon enough if you ask me. In the meantime, anyone need a Dad? I'm available.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The week ahead...

Tonight is Kaylani's last night at home for a week. It's also Mommy's last night at home for a week. It is NOT Daddy's last night at home for a week. That's right, Mommy and Kaylani are headed to Puerto Rico for Mayra Lee's wedding, and unfortunately Daddy can't take time off since he just started a new job 2 weeks ago.

The fact that Daddy will be alone at home for a week is the obvious part. The fact that Mommy and Kaylani will be on their own (with Abuelita) in Puerto Rico is also obvious. What may not be obvious is that the most nervewracking part of all of this comes tomorrow at 9:20am. That's when Mommy and Kaylani take off from Philly...on their first flight alone. Kaylani's been on a plane two other times, with the last also being to Puerto Rico back in March, but things were different back then. Back then, Kaylani was only 5 months old. Back then, Kaylani couldn't sit up, could barely grab things, and was nursing for her primary source of food. Oh how times have changed.

Here we are, 6 months later, and everything is different. Kaylani wants to stand now. She wants to walk. She wants to eat anything she can get her hands on (and some things she can't). She doesn't want to sleep. She doesn't want to sit still. And she talks. A lot. All of that is what makes the flying part scary for Mommy. Oh, and I forgot to mention that Kaylani and Mommy will be in first class (courtesy of frequent flier miles). Normally, flying First Class would be great, luxurious, relaxing. Now, it's just another source of stress for Mommy who worries what the other people in first class will think if Kaylani acts up.

Mommy's already packed a host of distractions to hopefully keep Kaylani entertained for the 3.5 hour flight. She's got a DVD player with Curious George, a bottle, a sippy cup, Cheerios, food, 6 books, plenty of toys, a bottle of water, and if worst comes to worst, her Blackberry. I'm hoping she does great so that she and Mommy have a great trip to Puerto Rico, but only time will tell. If you're curious to see how it turns out, check back tomorrow or Monday. I'll be sure to get all the details from Mommy before then.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Scary Birthday!


Today marks Kaylani's 11 month birthday...and that's scary. It's scary that it's been 11 months since our little one was born. It's scary that we've been parents for 11 months. It's scary that she turns one year in one month! And most of all, it's scary because it's October...and you know, October means Halloween!

We're very glad that Kaylani was not born on Halloween. No offense to all of you Halloween babies out there, but we're just glad Kaylani's not one of them. The main reason is that Daddy is not a fan of Halloween...at all. I'm sure having Kaylani around and dressing her up will make it a lot better, but in the grand scheme of things, Daddy and scary things just don't go together.

Anyways, I'm pretty spent from a long couple of days, and since I just posted this morning (click here to read in case you haven't seen it yet), I'm going to leave it at that and just post some pictures. These pictures have been LONG overdue (and we've kinda been slacking in the picture department), but enjoy. There's a lot of great ones in there, including Kaylani drinking from a straw, Aadi's birthday party, and some "scary" ones (yes, that's a spider on her head). Enjoy!

Traveling Alone

We had another first this week. This time, it wasn't for Kaylani. I had to travel overnight for work for the first time in almost 3 years. Since I spent almost 2 years traveling every week from Orlando to Boston/NY, you'd think that this would be no big deal. But since I was traveling for the first time since Kaylani was born, things were a bit different.

I left Tuesday morning for work about 10 minutes later than usual just so I could spend a few more minutes with Kaylani before I left. Actually, the 10 minutes helped me spend any time with her at all since she woke up late! I was just glad I got to see her since I wasn't going to see her again until Thursday morning. The day went by as normal until it was flight time. Apparently I've forgotten how to travel without a kid. I forgot I could use a kiosk to check-in. I forgot I didn't need to wait on line to check a bag (because I was carrying on). I forgot that I didn't have to be there 2 hours early to make sure I made it through the lines. And I forgot I didn't have to board the plane first since I didn't need extra time to situate myself.

Being away for the night also made me remember just how lonely traveling was. Sure I had a beer (or two) at the hotel bar while I watched the Twins win game 163 with a bunch of people. I even had a conversation with an older man who happened to be born in Caldwell about 50 years before I was (odd coincidence). But neither of those things replaced my desire to be home with my little girl or being able to steal a look at her sleeping in the video monitor.

What did help was Mommy sending me picture message throughout the day and the night. I got breakfast pictures, playtime pictures, shopping pictures, and even a video monitor sleeping picture. It was a great way to keep up with home without actually being home.

Being home for Mommy and Kaylani was also different. According to Mommy, Kaylani would wake up from her naps and search thr house for me. Mommy would even try and avoid going near the garage so Kaylani wouldn't wait for me to show up. She even avoided saying "Papa" too often so she didn't miss me (advice on this? Should she mention me more or less? No idea on our end).

Anyways, I got home after Kaylani's bedtime last night, but got to spend a bit of time with her this morning before heading up to NY. Hopefully tonight I'll get home for dinner and bedtime so I can be with her (and help out). If there's one thing I learned, its that I've got to take advantage of the time I've got. Especially since Mommy and Kaylani are headed to PR for a week without me on Sunday...but that's something I'm not going to think about until it happens.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

What's on the menu?

Feeding Kaylani is no easy task. Not even just the feeding part...all aspects of it. We've gotta dance around, sing, rotate through toys or other distractions just to get her to eat. That part we're actually used to by now. The hard part now is picking her food each meal. It's just not easy anymore.

Before, we used to grab any jar (or two) of baby food and give it to her. Vegetable, fruit, meat...all didn't matter as long as we had our distraction toys ready. Nowadays, we're lucky if she finishes one jar of food before she decides she's done with pureed food on a spoon. Now she wants what we're eating, or at the very least, something not pureed. That's the hard part.

All 3 meals are difficult because we have to pick something that she can eat (which is basically anything that doesn't contain nuts, honey, or umm...some other stuff that our doctor told us that I can't remember right now). If I had to pick one, I'd probably say breakfast is the hardest meal. Not on the weekends, but during the week. On the weekends, I'm home and cook breakfast (either waffles or eggs). On the weekdays, Mommy used to just drink a fruit smoothie. Now she's gotta make pancakes, waffles, eggs, or something else that Kaylani can grab and feed herself. Baby (or regular) oatmeal just doesn't cut it.

Lunch is usually out, and that's when we've gotta buy something for ourselves that she'll eat too. Pizza? Sure. Sandiwch? Sure. Something with rice? That works too. But it's not always that easy, and definitely not always that clean. No more soup and salad (which surprisingly, both Mommy and I like to eat for lunch). No more other things that may contain nuts. No more fast food from McDonald's, Wendy's, or Burger King. No more anything that might not be the healthies for Kaylani (including pizza if it's 2 or 3 days in a row).

Dinner's the same way. Now, when Mommy plans out the night, we gotta keep Kaylani in mind. Will she eat steak? Sure, if it's good meat and not too chewy. What can we marinate this chicken in? Nothing that has nuts or honey. How about sweet plaintain? She might not like it. Breakfast for dinner? Great idea, but that takes away from one of our breakfast options. How about no dinner at all? Won't work because Kaylani's gotta munch on something!

It's funny because I really do think it's great that she'll eat whatever we eat. I'm hoping this carries on for the rest of her life because I think it's great not to carry around food just for her. But sometimes, just sometimes, I wish she would eat her food and that's it. Sure would make life a little bit easier now. But no one ever said having a baby was easy. And anyone who does say that, probably doesn't have kids.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Pre-party!

Kaylani turns 1 in just over a month (which is pretty scary). She'll have a great big party (even scarier). She'll have a great big cake to make a great big mess (not quite as scary as we used to think). And she'll get to hang out with all her friends and family that can make it there (not scary at all). Since some of those things are scary, today we pre-partied. Not for Kaylani, but for Aadi.

Aadi turned 1 yesterday, and had a great big party today. We went over around 12pm to hang out with our friends and their friends and family. In the kid department, there were 5 kids around Kaylani's age and 3 kids a little bit older. Kaylani fell right in the middle, with most of the kids being older than her, which meant that most of the kids were walking/running around. Kaylani, on the other hand, crawled around, picked herself up, and just followed along. We used to say we couldn't wait for her to start walking on her own. After today, we're not quite so sure.

After hours of playing, it was cake time! Aadi had 4 types of birthday cake (3 cakes, and a ton of cupcakes). He was a little shy to put his hands right in the cake and go for it, and didn't even like the chocolate (a baby who doesn't like chocolate?? I know, shocked us too). But since Kaylani and Aadi are such close friends, she wasn't shy. She dug right into Mommy's piece of cake and started smashing it all over the place and eating it too. Luckily for us it was only a small piece of cake and she didn't eat THAT much of it.

The reason she actually didn't eat that much is because Daddy is holding her back. He's waiting for Kaylani's own first birthday party before he lets her go wild. Because of that, you won't find a single picture of Kaylani eating cake today (purposely excluded from pictures so there's no evidence...besides this post. Doh). But if you do want to see the mess, check back in 5 weeks. That's when we'll let Kaylani go wild. Hopefully she'll nap and be rested for her own party and not stay up for 7 hours straight and pass out the second we put her in the car. That's okay for her pre-party, but we've got much bigger plans for her party. And plans NEVER go wrong...right?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Sponge

It's been almost a full week since I started my new job. For the past 4 days, I've been acting as a sponge with all the information that's been thrown at me. I've come home every day exhausted at the amount of information my brain has had to take in. It's my job to retain all of that information, and hopefully be able to either hold it, or more importantly, spit it all back out when someone squeezes me (hmmm...that sounds weird, but you get the point). What dawned on me today is that this would be a lot easier if I was 11 months old.

During dinner, it dawned on me that Kaylani is the real sponge in the family. I sit at work and am asked to remember/learn things that have been in people's minds for 2 years or so. Kaylani sits anywhere and is being asked to do the same, but for things that people have in their minds for 20+ years! I have to remember things like who our target consumer is, or what's the next deadline for a website build, or what's my budget. Kaylani has to remember things like where's my head, how do I clap, and what the heck did I just eat. Sure they sound like the same, but for Kaylani, it's far more impressive for her to remember.

Actually, the most impressive part is how smart she is. Within the matter of a week, she's learned to put both hands on her head when we ask her "where's your head?" She's learned to feed herself with her own fork, or to put food in her mouth when we say "put the food in your mouth, not in your hair." She's even learned to touch our nose when we say "where's your nose?" (close enough). If you take her out of her high chair and say, "Kaylani, bath time!", she'll take off towards the stairs and head on up. If you put her on the floor of her room and say "bath time!" she'll run to the bath tub and stand up. She's learning so much each day that I'm surprised her sponge of a brain isn't full yet because mine's getting pretty close.

I only hope that Kaylani's sponge continues to get bigger and fuller because it just shows that she's healthy and developing. I'd wish the same for me, but you know what they say, you can't teach an old sponge new tricks. Well, something like that anyways.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Missing Out

After my week off, I'm back to work. Back to early mornings. Back to commuting to work. Back to getting home late. And most importantly (or sadly), back to missing out on Kaylani time.

Yesterday, I got home around 6 (not late) and got to spend a little bit with Kaylani. As most working parents know, spending time after work is mainly around dinner, bath time, and bed time. If we're lucky, we can also squeeze in a little bit of play time in there (which we did yesterday...kinda unknowingly since we lost track of time). Today though, no such luck.

Today, Kaylani slept in until 7:45am, which was about 5 minutes after I had already left for work. To make matters worse, I'm on a 5:43pm train home from NYC, which means I won't get home until around 7pm, or likely after Kaylani is on her way to dreamland. Sure I'll get to see her to say good night, but there will definitely be no sneaking in play time today. And that's not even the worst part.

Word from Mommy is that Kaylani stood on her own for a solid 3 seconds today! That's a pretty big accomplishment if you consider the longest she's stood on her own used to be one second...if we counted real quick. It definitely sucks to miss out on things like this. I've felt this way before (like when I missed out on her rolling over for the first time), and I'm sure it won't be the last time I'm going to miss out. I'm just hoping it feels worse now because I got used to seeing her do things last week.

Last week, I got to see her learn to feed herself with a fork or a spoon. I saw her learn to touch her head when we asked where her head was. I saw her touch our stuffed bear's (Goofy) nose and eyes when we prompted her. Saw her row, row, row her boat when we sang for her. Even saw her learn to "Moooo" when we asked her what a cow said (or any animal). Now, I'll be lucky if I see her do anything for the first time. From now on, her firsts will have to be at night, on the weekends, or over vacation/holidays.

Maybe the timing will work out for a few things, but my guess is that they won't. I sound like I'm complaining, but I'm actually not. These are the things that come along with being a working parent. Its a dirty job, but someone's got to do it! And after being a SAHD last week, let's just say I'm glad its me...no matter how good Kaylani was for me. When it comes down to it, Mommy is way better at being a stay at home parent than I am. Let's put it this way: it may be hard to miss out, but its just as hard not to!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Back to reality


Tomorrow, Mommy, Kaylani, and me all go back to reality. A reality where I'll leave every morning by 8am (at the latest) and not get back home until around 6pm. A reality where Mommy will be home with Kaylani all by herself (and her great Mommy friends and Mommy classes). A reality where I'm not longer a SAHD, but instead, just sad. On the bright side, reality means that I still earn a paycheck and can still afford the roof over our heads and the diapers on Kaylani's bottom. And since we need a LOT of diapers for Kaylani's bottom, I guess reality isn't all too bad. Plus, we sure had a blast while it lasted!

We finished off my SAHD week in grand fashion. Friday night, Mommy and I went out for our first date since Kaylani was born. We went to Catch a Rising Star Comedy Club in Princeton and then out to TGI Fridays (ahh the suburb life) to watch the end of the Yankees-Red Sox game. The show at the comedy club was alright. Not the best, but definitely good enough. It actually made me want to pursue my undeveloped dream of being a stand up comic that I had from years ago. I used to think that I would have enough material between my mom and Mommy, but now that Kaylani is with us, I just might have enough material to last a solid 3 (5 minute) shows. But since having another "job" would take away from my time at home, it's likely that my dream will remain undeveloped.

To sum up date night, it was good. Comedy Club was perfect because we didn't have that much of a chance to talk about Kaylani. Not that we didn't want to talk about Kaylani, but the rules of parent date night are that you're supposed to focus on the date, not the parent part. Since it was our first time out, you can bet we didn't stick to the rules strictly. Maybe next time...whenever that is.

To wrap up my SAHD week, we took Kaylani to the Aquarium again, and again, she had a great time. This time, I actually think she had a better time and knew what she was looking at. She was much more likely to say "ishhh" to all the fish swimming by and banged on the glass with much more force. Part of it could be that she was wearing shoes and could stand on ledges and bang on the glass instead of having to be carried, but I'm pretty sure she just remembered from last time too because she's growing. She didn't grow too much though since she was still afraid of the "water people", but again, who wouldn't be afraid of people banging on the glass back at you next to fish. Luckily the memories didn't carry over into swim class this afternoon. Mommy was a little afraid that she'd think there were fish in the pool with her. Guess she's not that grown up to put that together.

Anyways, she's now fast asleep, and soon, we'll follow and go to sleep ourselves. We've all got big days tomorrow. Personally, I'm excited to be starting a new job and looking forward to the challenge, but I'd be lying if I said I wasn't sad to be going back to work. Being home this week let me spend all types of time with my girls in their natural routines (unlike vacation) and it was a great thing to be a part of. It'll be tough to go back to work, but just so we're clear, work is way easier than being a stay at home parent. Trust me, I know from experience...even if it was only a week!

Oh, and check out these pictures from the last week. I didn't post all week, so there are pictures from the cake Mommy and Kaylani bought me for my last day at Rosetta, Little Gym, random times around the house, and the aquarium today. Enjoy!

Friday, September 25, 2009

SAHD Week: Day 5 - 300th Post!

Fatherhood Friday at Dad Blogs

Today is the 5th and final day of my SAHD week. Monday starts a new era in my professional career, and I'm just glad I got to spend a whole week at home with Mommy and Kaylani before doing so. Part of me thinks Mommy is glad that I'm going back to work...but we'll get into that in a little bit. First off, let me get some blog business out of the way.

Today marks the 300th post into The Daddy Diaries. I started this way back on 11/6/08, or 2 days before Kaylani was actually born. I wrote my first 100 posts in 102 days. I wrote my second 100 posts in 98 days (not sure how that happened). And here I am, writing my third 100 posts over the course of 121 days. Sensing a trend? Okay, it's not so much a trend, but this last 100 posts took significantly longer for me to write. Part of it was due to some writers block, but most of it was due to the amount of time I had to write. When given the opportunity to spend more time with Kaylani or write a post, I chose Kaylani. Thanks for all of you who have stuck around, who've been around since the beginning, or those who just pop in every now and then. Now, I bring you back to our regularly scheduled blog post.

We started our day around 7:15am today, or somewhere in the middle of early and normal. Kaylani actually woke up a little before 6. We had no idea why, but when Mommy went to change her this morning, we knew exactly why. Apparently Kaylani had a little bit of a Code Brown in her sleep. Nothing major by any means, but enough to send her pajamas straight to the wash. Breakfast went well (peach oatmeal banana and scrambled eggs and cheese with toast). Around 9:30, it was naptime. It didn't go quite as well as yesterday, but after 20 minutes, she was out for a solid hour (or enough time to watch Project Runway).

For class today, we had Little Gym, and Daddy went on a solo mission. Mommy took the opportunity to clean out her closet and then go get a massage. Little Gym was fun. For those who don't know, it's basically gymnastics for babies (and toddlers). We learned how to do back flips (there was some fancier name I don't remember), forward rolls, and to hang onto a baby bar. Then hanging part was the funniest since most babies do a "dead hang" straight down. Kaylani decided to do a "girl pull-up" (where she keeps her chin on top of the bar). Amazing upper body strength, but she cried through the whole thing. Silly baby.

After class, Kaylani, Sonia, Aadi, Sheena, Haley, and I all went to lunch nearby. It was a gorgeous day so we sat outside, had our lunch (pizza for me, pizza and peas and brown rice for Kaylani) and just chatted. This was a life I could get used to! The day was going great so far, but the part I dreaded most was coming up: afternoon nap without Mommy.

Around 1:50pm, it was time. I fixed up a 4oz bottle (you know, in case she decided she'd want some although she still only drinks an ounce or two) and we went upstairs. After about 15 minutes, 1.5 ounces of milk, and a whole lot of struggle, bottle time was over. I took Kaylani into our room, swung her around for a few minutes, and when she pushed off of me, that was it. Into the pack and play she went. I made my peace with her, kissed her a few times, laid her down from the standing position a few times, and then left. After 5 minutes, it was a miracle...she was sleeping! Couldn't believe it.

Kaylani ended up sleeping for 1.5 hours, or enough time for me to clean the garage and the shed. When Mommy called to check in, she said a few choice words (not clean enough to be mentioned here). I mean, of course she was happy that Kaylani napped and made it easy for Daddy. She wasn't happy when I said "this stay at home stuff is easy! What do you do all day?" I, of course, was joking.

The rest of the day went great. Yin Yin and Yea Yea are actually here and they're going to "watch" Kaylani while Mommy and Daddy sneak out for a "date" at a comedy club. I say "watch" because we're actually about to put Kaylani to sleep, and since she sleeps for 12 hours usually, the only thing they'll have to do is check out the video monitor every now and then...hopefully. Yin Yin asked what she should do if Kaylani cries. We weren't exactly sure how to answer because she hasn't done it!

Anyways, it's time for me to go say good night to Kaylani for the last time and hope she stays asleep. I sure hope it's a lot better than the last time we tried to go out on a date. Wish us luck! Other than Tommy and Gretchen's wedding, this will be the first time Mommy and I have been out without Kaylani. Oh man, I hope she stays asleep...for all of our sakes.

But before I go, don't forget that it's Fatherhood Friday over at Dad-Blogs! Check out all the great posts over there from the dads and moms in that great community. You won't regret it! I know I never do!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

SAHD Week: Day 4 - "LIVE!"

It's Day 4 in this 5 day SAHD week, and I think it's a perfect day to do another "live" post. I haven't done one since Baltimore, so follow along a day in the life of this "SAHD." Warning: results may not be typical for all SAHD's, SAHM's, babies, or people in general.

6am - Its 6am and Kaylani has started making noise. Its a little early, even for her. Wonder if the broccoli we gave her last night made her gassy...

6:30 - She's still making noise but she's not crying. No crying means no movement from us.

6:55 - Only sporadic noise coming out of the monitor now. A quick glance over to the video monitor confirms that she's definitely sitting up. She's made enough noise to get me out of bed...to use the bathroom anyways (damn you morning bladder).

7:04 - Ok, she's crying enough for an official wake up. Time to get this day started!

7:15 - A quick good morning, shades up, and a change means Kaylani's dry and poop free. Now its Mama time!

7:30 - Now she's all nursed up and ready for some real breakfast. Oh wait, she's gotta be changed since she's a big mess when she eats...with Daddy. Back to Mommy (I suck at picking out clothes)

7:37 - Mommy's heading back to bed and we're headed downstairs. Better get some sleep Mommy cuz you're back on your own next week!

7:40 - In the high chair, basket of toys at the ready, bib on, oatmeal ready, egg boiling on the stove, and a reheated pancake on the side. Let's do this!

7:47 - We're through 1/4 cup of oatmeal, 14 toys (including both toy cell phones...which is bad). Time to bring in the pancake

7:52 - Got a few bites of pancake in before the first chunks went on the floor. Time to hand over a bigger piece. That egg ready yet?

7:57 - Handing her a fork seems to have settled her down a bit. Cool faster egg!

8:04 - We're 1/2 through the pancake, and about 6 bites into egg yolk and Babybel cheese balls. Think I'm starting to lose her

8:07 - Alrighty then. 1/2 pancake, half egg yolk, half cheese, and full on crying. Time to get out

8:12 - Got her to eat 3 more egg and cheese balls while crawling around. Its clean up time! Guess I should start with Kaylani...

8:17 - Crawling and whining. Kaylani's fine, but Daddy needs his coffee. Road trip!

8:30 - And we're back from Dunkin Donuts with coffee for Daddy and a wheat bagel for Mommy and Kaylani. My shy little girl made it just fine, if you count burying her head in my shoulder when people said "Hi" as fine.

8:34 - Was looking for the Country channel on Comcast and flipped to R&B/Soul instead. Was about to change it when I saw Kaylani bopping her head to some Mariah while holding her bagel. Guess we're good here for now!

8:53 - Still standing and bopping while making her way through a 1/4 bagel. Wish I could start every day by drinking my coffee and watching her do this...

8:57 - Just found out Mommy hasn't been sleeping. Silly Mama, you had your chance. Now its nap time!

9:16 - Kaylani's fast asleep. Phew, long day already! Let's see if we can get an episode of Top Chef in before she wakes up

10:40 - Ummm...she's still sleeping. Time to get up Kaylani! We gotta get to Princeton for Music Together class!

10:50 - Seriously...wake up! We've got things to do (and I'm out of shows to watch)

10:53 - And she's up. Maybe she knew it was time. Maybe she got enough sleep. Or maybe Mommy made enough noise in the room as she was trying to get ready

11:03 - In the car waiting to go to class. Everyone but Mommy. 4 hours to herself this morning and she's still late. Go figure

11:15 - "I Loved Her First" just came on the radio. Still touches my heart even though Kaylani was "moooing" and screaming through it

11:30 - Sitting in class with 4 other babies, 4 other moms, and another Dad! Completely surprised...

11:35 - 2 more moms AND another Dad! Even the teacher is surprised there are 3 Dads here. I woulda bet good money that I was going to be the only Dad here. I also woulda lost. Good thing I don't bet...on attendance at Kaylani's classes.

12:30pm - So class is over. Music class is kinda fun. Loud music, singing, dancing, instruments, and a giant mirror all in a small, hot room. Hmmm, that sounds kinda sarcastic, but I'm serious. It was kinda fun! Time for lunch.

12:57 - Found a nice checkerboard table in the park to have lunch with Sonia and Aadi. We've got 2 toys for Kaylani. Let's see how this goes.

1:22 - Done with lunch. Kaylani did pretty well. She ate a jar of Chicken Mango Risotto, a bunch of my shepherds pie, and 2 of Mommy's french fries, and it only took 1 toy (and a plastic spoon and fork) to get it done.

1:25 - Just when we thought she was done, we got in 3 more bites of shepherds pie and half a container of Aadi's yogurt. Gooooo fat baby!

1:33 - Walked by a baby boutique and overheard Mommy saying she wouldn't spend a lot of money on an outfit for Kaylani because she'd grow out of it too quickly. Yesssss, my 4 year brainwashing plan is finally coming to life.

1:47 - After 10 minutes of crying in the car, Kaylani passed out. Thought we could make it home so she could nurse before naptime. Guess not.

1:58 - Successfully transferred her from the car to her playroom asleep in her carseat. Now what do we do?

2:28 - We're halfway through Eastwick right now and Kaylani's still sleeping (I know, tough life). On an off topic, Wednesday night TV might be the best night (pending Survivor and Greys tonight). Modern Family, Cougar Town, Top Chef, Glee, and Eastwick? By the way, I am not a middle aged woman, 25-49. I just happen to enjoy the same shows as them.

2:37 - Why oh why do I constantly jinx Kaylani's naptime? Every time I do one of these "live" posts, Kaylani wakes up within 10 minutes of me saying she's still sleeping. Oh well, at least she got in a 40 minute nap. At this rate, we may try for 3 naps...or a 6pm bedtime.

2:47 - Sorry Kaylani, but you've gotta watch a few minutes of Eastwick with us. Just until the commercial. Promise!

2:54 - So Kaylani may have almost fell off the couch while she was flipping through an L.L. Bean catalog. Not saying she did or didn't, but at least she didn't actually fall off...you know, if she was close.

2:56 - Mommy thinks she smells poopy. Even asked Kaylani if she was poopy. No answer.

2:59 - Yep, she's poopy. Not just any poopy but woooooweeeee poopy.

3:18 - Poop free and a belly full of more yogurt. Now what? Its kinda hot and humid out to go to a park or the farm. Good thing she's happy crawling around while we figure it out.

3:33 - We're in the playroom playing with anything we can find. Curious George worked for a few minutes, Caps For Sale lasted about 30 seconds. Oddly, the thing she's most entertained with is the puzzle piece she has in her mouth like a pacifier for the last 10 minutes. Odd because she's never even kept a pacifier in her mouth for a long time!

3:38 - Got her to trade the puzzle piece for a cold teething ring. Those top 2 teeth gonna come in anytime soon?

3:53 - Kaylani doesn't like towers so much. Every time I build one she knocks it over. Brings back traumatic memories of kindergarten for me. Damn you Dave White knocking over those blocks on me! Damnnnn youuuuu!

3:58 - Giving in to the temptation and going out for 2nd coffee. We'll work in a grocery trip while we're at it so its a productive trip

4:30 - So it's 4:30. A few days ago we made a modeling consultation appointment for Kaylani at 4:30 today. They found us at the mall and asked if we'd be interested. When they called to confirm the appointment, they said "make sure Kaylani is dressed very nicely. And you guys too. All of you need to make a good first impression! No jeans, no sweatpants." That meant no appointment. See ya later modeling agency. We'll take our cute baby elsewhere on our terms.

4:57 - Done shopping. Our goal was to get some snacks for Kaylani. Here are some of the things we came out with: Multigrain Cheerios, a pear, a nectarine, Polly-O String Cheese, cheese dogs, oatmeal bread, reduced fat Oreos, and american cheese. Not exactly clear which are her snacks and which are ours

5:13 - Mommy's cooking and Kaylani's been occupied by a squirrel who came right against our back door to say hi. Best/cheapest babysitter ever.

5:31 - Just spent 10 minutes playing "In the bucket, out the bucket" with Kaylani. Its a fun game we play where she puts her Little People sheep in the bucket, pulls it out with a big smile, then goes back in the bucket only to find the same sheep there to pull out again! Good times!

5:35 - Alright, let's start dinner time! We're about 30-45 minutes earlier than normal, but Kaylani also napped an hour earlier than normal. Gotta get moving!

5:51 - Finished 1 jar (4oz) of Plum Banana Brown Rice with little problem (which means 10 toys and one of the toy cell phones). Time to move on to some leftover rice!

6:17 - So Kaylani ate a whole (baby) bowl of leftover rice and some pieces of chicken from tonight's dinner before she called it quits on the high chair. Time to let her run free on the floor. Don't worry, she'll be back. They always come back. And by they, I mean Kaylani. Oh, and to make sure we gave her a full bath (with hair washing and everything), she put some rice in her hair before she went. Awesome.

6:31 - Dinner time is now officially over. For the last 10 minutes or so, Kaylani crawled all over the place and ate about 6 more spoonfuls of rice and 3 bites of chicken. We know we shouldn't spoil her and let her eat on her own accord, but hey, she's eating. Anyways, it's bath time!

6:40 - Bath time is over and Kaylani gave us a nice little present. No she didn't doody in the tub...she clapped! Looks like she learned something from Music Together class already! Love the clapping baby. Always reminds me of those little toy monkeys with the cymbals clapping on the street...

6:45 - Teeth are all clean, baby is all dry. Time to diaper her up, PJ her up, and then story her to bed. Oh, and of course, nurse her too (but Mommy will take care of that part).

6:57 - And Daddy's night is done. After reading 2 books (I Love You, Good Night and Buenos Noches a Todos) while Kaylani continued to clap (always nice to feel appreciated), Kaylani blew me a kiss good night, said "g'nigh" and out I went. Now it's all up to Mommy to nurse her and put her down. I take that back. In about 20 minutes or so, I'll go in and rub Kaylani's back as she gets put in her crib. Then, after she looks at me and puts her head back down, my night will be done.

7:28 - Now we're done. Kaylani's fast asleep for the 3rd time today. We ended up not being that much earlier than normal, which is a good thing. Hopefully she'll still sleep until 7:30 tomorrow morning.

And that concludes today's "live" post from this SAHD. I've only got one more day of SAHD-ness left in me for now so you can bet I'm going to take full advantage of it. We've got Little Gym class, then who knows what after that. Whatever it is, I'm sure it'll be good. Thanks for following along today and everyday! See you tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

SAHD Week: Day 3

Day 3 of this 5 part series I'm calling "SAHD Week" was our day "off." Now, all you parents out there know that once you have kids, there's no such thing as a day off. What I mean by a day off is that Kaylani has no scheduled classes (Monday and Wednesday's are her "off" days). These days are actually some of the hardest for Mommy. No classes mean you have to find your own ways to entertain Kaylani. Class typically take 45 minutes to an hour, plus the 15-30 minutes of driving time to and from means that 2 hours of the day is taken up with a class. Today, 2 hours of our day were "free." Here's how it went down.

We started the morning as usual around 7:30am. Mommy's still convinced that me showering at 6:45am on a work day makes Kaylani get up earlier. After 5 straight days me not getting up early for work and of Kaylani sleeping in (or being quiet in her crib) until 7:30am, I think she may be on to something. Anyways, we all had an awesome breakfast of scrambled eggs, bread/toast, and a piece of cheese, with Kaylani eating a whole egg, a whole piece of bread, and a whole piece of cheese (as part of our continued attempts at Operation Fat Baby). With the weather threatening to rain, we decided to skip a planned morning walk and head for a drive during nap time. How convenient!

We drove out to Crate & Barrel outlet and a showroom for one of the companies who gave us an estimate on our basement. After a 45 minute nap, and those 2 stops, we were ready for lunch and a trip to the mall so Mommy could find a dress for an upcoming wedding (more to come on that in a future post since Mommy and Kaylani are "abandoning" me for a week). At lunch, Kaylani sat with us and ate a half of a slice of pizza and half of a crust too. As you can see, we only feed Kaylani the healthiest of foods. Then, it was a quick trip to Princeton so Daddy could get his haircut, and then we were back home again. After an hour of playing and a yogurt snack (more food), Kaylani went down for a nap.

Nap time today lasted 2 shows, I mean an hour and a half, which was enough for Mommy and Daddy to watch 2 shows (90210 and Gossip Girl...only the best entertainment for us). When Kaylani got up, it was more playing in the playroom, then dinner (pasta with meat sauce), and now we just finished bedtime. Kaylani's out like a light already, which just goes to show just how tiring today was.

Maybe it was the fact that we were out and about for most of the day, or the fact that Kaylani slept for an hour and a half this afternoon, but today seemed like it flew by (which is a good thing). Or maybe it's that I'm getting used to this SAHD stuff. Or then again, maybe it's just that my first day back to work is quickly coming up. Whatever it is, I've got 2 more days to spend as a SAHD and I'm going to take full advantage of them. Tomorrow we've got Music Together class, and then maybe a trip to the zoo or the aquarium. Friday we've got Little Gym, and then who knows what else before dinner out. Part of me hopes they go by slowly, and the other part of me hopes they go by quickly. One thing I know is that come Monday, they'll definitely have gone by too quickly...for all of us.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

SAHD Week: Day 2

So here we are. Day 2 of SAHD week, which is anything but sad. It's not sad, but it sure is tiring. I think Mommy put it best today when she saw me looking completely drained around 3pm. "It's tiring when your brain doesn't work all day right?" It was a funny thing to say, and could even be seen as an insult to stay at home parents all over, but it's true. At least in our case.

You would think we had nothing to be tired about. Mommy passed out last night around 10:30pm, and I fell asleep shortly after (with the Yankees game on) around 11:30pm. We both slept the night until Kaylani woke us up around 7:30am. Do the math and it means we got 9 and 8 hours of sleep respectively, which for me, is more than I would get if I was working. The morning went by quickly with breakfast (blueberry pancakes) and then some play time before nap time (which thankfully was much easier today with Kaylani falling asleep after 20 minutes). During nap time, we met with a basement contractor to see about getting things finished (hoping to make a decision and get ourselves a basement before her 1 year birthday).

Conveniently, Kaylani slept the entire visit and right up until it was time to meet Sonia and Aadi for lunch before Gymboree class. Gymboree was a lot of fun, with Kaylani crawling and walking (with our help) up and down some padded mats/ramps/toys, and wasn't that tiring since she clung to us for awhile instead of running off by herself. After class, we made a quick trip to Whole Foods, and then it was home for a yogurt and a nap. Thankfully again, Kaylani went down like a log and nap time was on. That's when Mommy made the "tiring without the brain" comment to me.

Looking back on it, we really hadn't done that much. We stayed at home, Kaylani napped once, we drove to a few places to have lunch and errands, and then that was it. It was 3:30pm and I was exhausted. Normally at work, it'd have to be a really tough day for me to be wiped out by 3:30pm (or a really bad day). At work, I could be in meetings, on the phone, writing a presentation, or digging through data for hours on end, and I'd still truck on through until 5 or 6pm without a problem. Sure I'd be pretty tired when I got home, but today was a different type of tired.

I think it comes down to being the type of person that can handle being a stay at home parent, or stay at home anything for that matter. Maybe I'd get used to it over time, but so far, 2 days has not been enough to adjust to being a stay at home dad. Again, I love spending the time with Kaylani and Mommy, but I just don't think I'm cut out for it. Mommy didn't think she was cut out for it either, but she's much better at it (or much more used to it). What I'm trying to say is, kudos to all of you stay at home people out there. And to Mommy especially, thanks for doing what you do. Kaylani and I both appreciate it more than you'll ever know!