Liveblogging My Sunday With My Daughter

My wife has started a part-time job, working on some nights and weekends. It isn’t in her field (graphic design), but I think it will help her feel better that she’s contributing to the family financially (though she does so much for us already taking care of our daughter – she should be paid for that!). So, this Sunday, her first day at work, I got to hang out with my daughter. In a sure sign I’m addicted to blogging, I kept some notes of our time together, for the purpose of “liveblogging” it here. Be wanted. Some details may be slightly exaggerated for comedic effect. 🙂

10:30 AM – My wife leaves for work. My daughter (22 months old) handles it well, but after a few minutes says “Daddie holdie.” I do.

10:45 AM – Daughter wants to draw, but not with her crayons. Rather, she wants to use pencils. I find no harm in this as long as I keep a close eye on things. Nothing other than paper gets drawn on, as far as I know.

10:50 AM – Snack time. Also the first time I’m able to sit down since my wife left. Things are fun so far and I’m getting a workout.

11:00 AM – I turn my head for one nanosecond, only to find my daughter has carried a chair to the kitchen, on top of the hard, slate floor, climbed up on it, and says, “I wash my hands”. I calmly tell her we don’t climb on chairs. The girl has no fear. This starts the clock watching. One hour down, four to go. **sigh**

11:15 AM – My daughter entertains herself playing with her Playtown people. It’s so cool to see her entertain herself. She even fluctuates her voice for the different people. She give the “daddy” a low voice and the “momma” a high voice. At this point she could ask me for a Ferrari, and I’d probably buy her one.

11:25 AM – MAJOR DIAPER INCIDENT! Enough said.

11:30 AM – I let her watch Charlie and Lola, a really cute British cartoon on the Disney Channel. Whew!

12:00 PM – Lunch time. I heat up pork chops and green beans from the night before. I get everything ready and she tells me “Eat at little table!”. That’s fine with me. She ate pretty well actually, and when she wasn’t eating she was singing songs. It feels nice to sit.

12:30 PM – She’s done eating. I clean up and note the time. The hockey game is on T.V. I hope to turn it on with the sound off, figuring she won’t really notice it. My daughter asks me for “Emma Ms” (M&Ms).

12:35 PM – I turn on the hockey game and my daughter and I pretend to play hockey, and no I don’t wear my ice skates in the living room. I’ve learned my lesson on that one.

12:45 PM – My daughter notices a lady bug in the house and I attempt to “humanely” remove it from the house. It flies away, though, and my daughter says, “lady bug all gone”. Bugs 1, Struggling Writer – 0.

1:00 PM – We lay on the couch together and I read books in a desperate attempt to get her to take a nap. Just when I think it’s working, she springs up with another energy burst. I break out Mountain Dew number 2.

1:30 PM – I ask her if she wants to use the potty and she says she wants to use “momma’s potty”, so we go up to the bathroom and I hold her while she uses our toilet. It works! We call her grandparents to tell them the good news.

1:45 PM – My daughter is playing with her big green ball. At one point she was lying on the ground and the ball rolled away, prompting her to say, “Don’t run away from me ball, I read to you.” Commence melting of my heart.

2:15 PM – I need a nap and my daughter turns off the hockey game, confident the Penguins are going to win, I guess.

2:15 – 3:00 PM – I don’t know what happened. It’s all a blur. Maybe I blacked out for a bit. Anyhow, at 3:00 we got our coats on and met my wife at the mall to share Auntie Ann’s pretzels. I survived my time alone with my daughter and got a new appreciation for what my wife does every day.

Well, that was my day. It was fun and exhausting.

Bunny Tail

My daughter finally seems to be feeling better. Last night my wife was even able to leave the house last night for a little jog and some much needed time alone without my daughter bawling hysterically (seriously, when my daughter was sick my wife couldn’t even leave the room without my daughter melting down into pleas of “Mamma holdie!”). That meant I was in charge of my daughter and the night’s play (or at least that half hour’s play). Let’s just say we had a grand time.

We started off by reading a book, Mr Brown Can Moo, Can You? by Dr. Seuss, which is probably the most fun of the Seuss books to read aloud, as there are a lot of rhymes and sounds in the book. My daughter made it to the end of the book, which was great also.

Next, I steered her towards “her drawer”, which is the only drawer in the kitchen she is allowed to play in. This drawer contains wooden spoons, and various plastic measuring cups that double as hats and drinking bowls for her animals. She loves that drawer.

My daughter has this little blue bunny that I make dance for her. I have named the bunny “Peter Cottontail” and have him sing the whole song for her: “Here comes Peter Cottontail, hopping down the bunny trail, hippity hoppity, Easter’s on its wayyyyyyy.” Yes, I sing this even in December. You have to see this bunny. If the bunny is three inches tall, two of those inches are ears. When I make him dance, the ears go flying everywhere. She LOVES it.

Anyhow, that’s how my daughter and I spent our time together last night. She has taken to calling “Peter Cottontail” “Bunny Tail” which I think is even cuter. At one point last night, she was stirring two measuring cups together, as if she was baking something. I asked (or Peter Cottontail asked her, I can’t remember) her what it was and she said very definitively, “hamburgers”. Now, she has probably only eaten hamburgers once in her life, but that was on her mind, I guess.

Finally, I received this picture of my daughter and I from a co-worker yesterday. It’s of us in our Halloween costumes. She was a ballerina.

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PS Hoodie gave me an award yesterday that I need to write a post about. I will get to that soon!

We Will Racka

I haven’t written about my daughter in a little while, so I thought I’d share a little story today. When we woke up yesterday morning my little girl was humming a little tune. She was saying “Adda..adda.. racka”. It was cute but I wasn’t really sure what she was saying. As she continued to sing, however, I realized she was singing Queen’s We Will Rock You, a song that anyone that has attended a sporting event in the United States in the past twenty years knows all too well.

Now, I’m a big fan of Queen, but I haven’t really played any of their music for my daughter to hear. For a while, I had no idea where she was getting this song. Then I remembered Donkey Konga, the Nintendo Gamecube game we play, has We Will Rock You in it.

Donkey Konga is really a pretty cool game.  You use a bongo drum as a controller and try to drum to the song.  Every now and then we play this game and our daughter dances along to the music.  It just amazes me she remembered “We will rock you” from the game as we haven’t played it in a week.

It’s just amazing how easy it is for us all to retain information in song form, even at 17 months old.

Little Time in the Morning: A Tale of Whoa(!)

Each morning I wake up before everyone else in my house, get my shower, and then get dressed. When I’m done in the shower my wife wakes up and gets her shower. We do all this with the hopes our daughter will remain sleeping, so we can get ready without having to “referee” our little 16 month old daughter who loves to pull things off tables and have fun. She usually wakes up right as my wife gets into the shower, and I have to quickly get dressed and then attend to her. This is all important background information for my story today.

Anyhow, yesterday my daughter woke up, of course, while I was getting ready. It wasn’t too bad, though. I was able to get dressed, take her downstairs for her milk, and read her new Elmo book to her, all before driving to work. When I got to work I booted up my computer, made a nice cup of Tea, and checked my email. All was right with the world. After a while, I made a trip down the hall to the bathroom, only to discover I had been sitting there the whole time with my underwear on backwards.

Yep, you read that correctly. It’s not every day one wears one’s undergarments the wrong way, and no I’m not trying to start a new trend. Anyhow, I think this perfectly illustrates what it’s like to be a parent.

Just for the record, my underwear is on correctly today.  And now I feel I’ve shared too much!

Love

Just a quick little post here to tide you over for a while.  Busy morning.

Anyhow, I just got off the phone with my daughter (16 months) and she said “I love Dadda” for the first time.   I’m desperately trying not to be wrapped around her little finger, but it is hard.

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Under Pressure

There are many different types of pressure in life such as money, work, and being human in general.  I just found a new type of pressure tonight.

I was hanging out with my daughter (15 months old) this evening when I smelled something funky.  It was the dreaded #2. It was upstairs for us.  On the way to the changing table I grabbed three wipes and got to work.  Unfortunately, staring back at me was a six wipe bum.

Now I like to think of myself as cool under pressure.  In this case, I had to improvise. With beads of sweat forming on my brow, I carefully used my three wipes, cleaning the area as much as possible without any stuff to skin contact. Then, I grabbed one of the cloths we have under the changing table, and finished the job. My daughter was laughing at me on the inside, I’m sure.

Crisis averted.

The response I just received from my wife as I told her this story was,”You’re doing the laundry this week.”  I get no sympathy around here. I guess having to do this four times in one day may have hardened her a little 🙂 .

Speaking of poop, I’ve started my entry for the writing contest I mentioned the other day.  This one was started the old fashioned way, with pencil and paper (a scrap piece of paper I had laying around rather than the Moleskine).  I’m happy with it so far.

New Words and Writing Update

I have been working on my Clarity of Night contest entry and hope to submit that this afternoon (today is the final day for submissions). I’m pretty happy with my effort so far, though this will be pretty different than my past entries. I will post a link to my story once it is posted on the site. In the meantime, here is the first line from my story:

Alistar wept, his tears blazing a path over his earth stained cheek.”

Alistar wept, his tears tracing the curve of his sunken cheek.”

My daughter debuted two new words yesterday. I’m mentioning them here mostly so I don’t forget. First, when I just got home from work she pointed at my neck and said “tie”. That was pretty amazing because we hadn’t even said the word first. I guess she remembered from other days (I have to wear a tie to work Mondays through Thursdays).

Then, when we were giving her a bath and drying her off she pointed and said “towel”. Again, we didn’t say it first. As you can tell, I’m pretty proud.

Trying to get her to sleep last night we turned on the T.V. to the public access station (the one with the classical music and community events) and all of a sudden she sat up and said “O”. I guess she saw the letter “O” on the screen and wanted to tell us about it.

Remember When?

I’ll let you in on another detail about myself: I’m constantly looking at the past, my past, and thinking to myself, “Man, those where the days”. I’ll think back to the times my wife and I were living in our 1 bedroom apartment and think about all the fun times we had, ignoring the bathroom that was so small you could reach out your arms and touch each wall. Or I think back to college and remember all the carefree fun we had Friday and Saturday nights, ignoring all the time spent memorizing information or cramming for finals. Or I think back to High School and, well, you get the idea. Some day I’ll look back on now and think it was the most wonderful time ever.  Am I the only one here?
With that in mind, I have to tell you that I’m already having these feelings in regards to my daughter.  Here is where you will all probably call me insane.  There is a small part of my (something like 2% or me) that misses the times I had to drive my daughter around in the car at 3:00 AM to get her to go back to sleep.  I’m crazy, aren’t I (I’m sure Helen at least thinks so)?  She has been sleeping consistently through the night for the past few weeks, and I feel rested and it has been great, but I do miss those late nights we had together, lifting her out of her car seat, her little face resting on my shoulder.

Also, I came up with some pretty cool story ideas when I was driving around at 3:00 AM (here, here and here).  I guess there’s something about driving around on the freeway with only a sleeping toddler and a few truckers to keep you company that lets you think about things.  Maybe I’ll just set the alarm for 3:00 every night and try to think about stuff.  Or, maybe not.

Anyhow, do you all experience this nostalgia?  I doubt I’m alone on this.  After all, there would be no such thing as I Love the ’80’s without it.

In the meantime, I’ll be thinking about the good old days when I wrote this post.

“Pup”

I had a pretty nice weekend, I hope you did as well.  Right as I was about to leave for work this morning I heard my daughter cry, meaning she was awake.  Since my wife was still getting ready, I ran up the stairs to comfort my daughter and change her diaper.  When she was laying on the table she said “ba” which might not mean a lot to you but to me it meant she wanted me to sing “Ba ba Black Sheep”.  We have taught our daughter some sign language, including the sign for “more” so every time I finished the song she would put her hands together, telling me to sing more.  She was so cute and it was a nice moment.  I could post audio here, but I think I’ll spare us all the embarrassment.

On Friday night my wife and I were doing yard work and at first my wife was walking around with my daughter as I attempted to prune our impossible too large bush in the front of our house.  I nearly fell off the little stool I was standing on and killed myself several times while trying to trim the highest branched of the bush and nearly cut my face off a few times (some may say this would be an improvement) with the electric hedge trimmer.  I got most of them, but there are still a few sticking up I’ll have to get the ladder out for, but that will be another day’s adventure. I survived, though, and my wife  took over on some of the lower stuff.

At this point, I brought my daughter inside because she kept wanting to climb the concrete stairs, which she is not ready for.  Unfortunately, when she got inside she cried because she was away from her “mamma”.  In a moment of weakness, I popped in the Baby Einstein “Neighborhood Animals” DVD, and she loved it.  There is a little dog pupped throughout the video and my daughter kept laughing, saying “Pup”.  It was really cute.  The video obviously change her mood.

I’ve created a Baby Einstein monster now.  She will walk up to the TV, turn it on, and say “Pup” and then do the sign for “more “.  The hard part is that she doesn’t do it in an overly demanding way.  The girl is just too sweet.  Just so you know, we’ve held strong and haven’t shown her the movie every time she asks.  We try to limit her television viewing.

It’s just so neat to see this person who last year communicated in cries, smiles, and farts, to turn into someone who steals our hearts with her giggles, words, and yes even her farts.

Sleep Update

Well, things were much better the night after the worst night of my life.  We went to an Arts Festival in town, leaving around 9:00 and on the way home my daughter fell asleep.  She was still sleeping when I left for work at 7:30 this morning.  That’s right, she slept through the night!.  Now I’m not sure if this was from “crying it out” the night before or if we just got lucky.  We’ll see tonight.  Either way, it was a nice little gift for us.  I don’t know what I would’ve done if we had a repeat of the night before.