Thursday, April 30, 2009

Fatherhood Friday - I'll dance with you always.

Happy Fatherhood Friday! For those who don't know what this is all about, you need to head yourself on over to It's an amazing group of people and I've already been introduced to a slew of online awesome people. You cute little girl-girls are totally welcome over there too. 

This FF post isn't going to be very long because there really isn't much to write on the topic. I don't even know why I think about it sometimes since it is so far off into the future. 

Someday I'm going to have to let her go

20 odd some years from now I'm sure she'll find an amazing man who treats her well, and she'll leave me. I swear I'm such a wuss when she just turned 1 and already I get choked up about something that isn't going to happen for a very long time. 

I especially think about this when we dance, because we'll dance at her wedding. 

But for now, she's all mine!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Wacky Wednesday 11 - My Ears a Clogged

A hip-happy Wednesday to all and a warm welcome to the new readers this week. (I see you there... sneaking in there like ninjas... don't think I can't see you).

My world is currently very hazy. I'm not sure if it's part of the healing process from me being sick, but it feels like my head in under water right now with the way I am hearing different sounds. Like someone blew little water bubbles into my ears and now everything is muddled. 

I hate it. I rely on sound a lot in my life and am especially peckered that my music sounds like it's coming out of to tin cans. Ugh.

I feel sort of bad for my brother, poor kid hasn't been getting very much sleep lately. He and I like to have chats on IM during the day that are filled with banter and witty comebacks. All things are said in fun and we usually try to continually one up each other with funny phrases or jesting quips. I mean... what are big brothers for?

Well, lately because of his lack of sleep I've just been beating him up. I'm almost starting to feel bad about it. There have been multiple occasions where he's just stopped his sentence and wrote, "... wait... ugh... I just can't think straight. This lack of sleep is really effecting me."

Any sleep remedies anyone has that I can offer him so that he gets back to his old self and so that I don't have to feel so bad for DOMINATING! (booo yah!)

No, seriously though... does anyone?

Finally... remember the ShamWow guy? Oh yeah, check this out.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Meaningful Monday - Sick Again

Um... Hi. 

((shuffling feet on the ground))

How are you guys... I. uh. you know... 

didn't post on Friday. so... I'm sorry.

Hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me. Promise I won't let it happen often, it's just that I was really sick last week and there was a lot of stuff on my mind and I think it all just met up with me all at once. 

Stretched Thin

I'm gonna lay down some of my beliefs for a second. I believe there is a God. I also believe that this God is benevolent as well as my home-boy. I do believe that God is not a dick. Given these statements of belief I know that "my God" would never give me more then I can handle. 

The funny thing is that what I can handle isn't much. What I can handle with him as my "dude" is everything. ("I can do all things through him who gives me strength" layin' down some phatty Philippians 4:13 for you Bible readers out there.)

Lately I've been sucking at looking to him (or her I guess... personifying God usually leads to a "male" reference, so technically he has no gender... but calling God "it" just seems odd) for strength. I've been looking inwardly and trying to juggle a lot of issues going on in life. 

Finances, being a good dad, being a good husband, not knowing what's going on with my wife, having a new team lead at work, keeping friends happy, throwing parties, worrying about job security, etc. 

There are more but those are the big ones and I let them rule me instead of just relaxing a bit, taking a step back, and realizing that I can't control everything. 

It's funny. I'm a control freak who tries to control everything in his life, when deep down, I know I don't want to control everything.

So it builds up until...

I get sick. My body forces me to shut down and ignore everything in the world except the necessities. It usually revolves around some crappy chest congestion that doesn't leave my lungs... ever. 

And that's what happened last week. And why I didn't post Friday, because I needed to just ignore some things in my life and, not that I don't value you, dear reader... because I really do, but this blog was the first thing to get the axe when it came to things to do on Friday. (well... Thursday night)

But I'm back.

I've had the time to reset, reboot, reload a fresh kernel and clean out my processes, open up a few threads, and start a little bit new. 

Funny afterthought.

I did pecker off my wife on Thursday. Since Wednesday I hadn't really been running any sort of temperature, just crappy feeling and lots of coughing and no sleeping, At 6:30pm on Thursday my temperature spiked to 102.9F out of no where.  By 7:30pm I was down to 100.5F and by 8pm i was at 99.4F

At the 8pm check she gave me evil glarey eyes. 
I looked at her and said, "What. Clearly my immune system found the virus and had to kill it."
With disdain in her voice she said, "I hate you and your freaking immune system."

Have a good week everyone!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Wacky Wednesday 10

I'm all out of sorts today. Niamonster has been fighting a little cough and some snotties and a little fever, and just as she starts going on the upswing... you guessed it... daddy starts going on the down swing. 

Awesome. Not like I have to go to work or anything.

But who cares about illness - let's get wacky anyway.

My wonderful wife IMs me today at work with "The garbage men didn't take our garbage." On a normal Tuesday I think I'd normally be ok with it, but this was a Tuesday after hosting a decent sized party. That meant we had more garbage then your average bear. 

As you can assume at a party that is hosted outdoors, people will throw their garbage items away in the nearest garbage receptacle. If they were in the garage, I had placed a garbage can in there. If they were outside on the deck, then our big honkin' garbage can was there. 

It's a garbage can, right?


Not according to the completely screwed up Milwaukee county. That's not a garbage can... it's a refuse container that is suppose to contain refuse in bags. You know what else it is not supposed to contain? 

Cans. Two of them to be exact because I saw them sitting on top of the now, "Refuse container", when I pulled it out to the curb.

How do I know the cans were the reason for the garbage men not taking my trash? 

And to make it even better they were nice enough to remind me HOW to recycle. 

(huff... deep breath ShankRabbit... relax)

This pissed me off. I was cussing up a storm to Isabella on IM and throwing down words that could make a Canadian hockey player blush. 

WHY? WHY????


... sorry for yelling. 

But seriously, think about it. Recycling is good for our planet. However, I think that the time and resources which were spent printing this little "instruction sheet" and this little sticker telling me what a bad human I am, hurt the environment MORE then what two little aluminum cans in a landfill ever could have done. 

It wasn't the garbage men who put this sign up either. Isabella was home when they picked up the trash. 

So lets take a trip down today's events as I can assume they happened:
  1. 9:45am: Garbage men A, B, and C come rolling down our street.
  2. 9:46am: Garbage man B hops off the back of the truck and walks towards our garbage can.
  3. 9:46am: Garbage man B grabs the two bags sitting on the ground.
  4. 9:47am: Garbage man C notices a glimmer of shine coming from the "refuse container" and says to garbage man B, "Pardon me, gentle sir, I doth believeth that our kindly neighbor here is attempting to lay waste to our planet with his glimmering magical cans. Our Lord hath sayeth, 'Whoever shall lay waste with shiny objects shall be ignored.'".
  5. 9:48am: Garbage men A, B, and C leave my "refuse container", still full, on my sidewalk and drive off.
  6. 11:55am: Garbage men A, B, and C arrive in their truck at the city dump and give reportings to the director of sanitation that a foul beast has attempted to destroy all mankind with aluminum, however, they successfully thwarted my evil plans. 
  7. 1:35pm: Sanitation director personally initials a public reprimand for the foul beast, warning that if said beast ever attempt such a dastardly ploy again, all sanitation services shall be severed.
  8. 1:36pm: Sanitation director hops in his company car and drives to the foul beast's lair to deliver said reprimand.
  9. 1:45pm: Upon realization that the foul beast is at the doctors for his foul spawn's 1 year checkup, the Sanitation director leaves the note at the BACK DOOR.
  10. 1:58pm: Sanitation director arrives back at his office with the smile of victory at another days work completed. 

You know what the kicker is? One of the bags that they did take was very translucent and VERY filled with cans. 

Ass. Holes.

Guess what else? Niamonster took her first steps and I was home with video camera in hand. Woot!


Monday, April 20, 2009

Meaningful Monday - Happy Birthday, Niamonster

I had a lot of time to sit and reflect yesterday. Exactly one year ago yesterday my wife went through a physical process that you could only believe was possible by witnessing it (and even then I wonder how the hell she did it). 

A child. A human. Grew inside of my wife for 9 months. Came out in the most painful way imaginable. Sitting in her chair and playing with her cake. 


There are thoughts and feelings I have which I can't express in words. I want people to be able to read this text and feel what I feel - but that's not possible. 

The first birthday isn't just a huge milestone for Niamonster... it was a huge milestone for me. 

Here's why.

Aside from all of those lame jokes that people drop about "being able to actually keep the kid alive", the thoughts of success and achievement really are there. 

A year ago yesterday I was put into a situation where I had no idea what was going on. I had changed only one or two diapers in my lifetime. Had never fed a baby, or held it for very long, much less raised it or cared for it. I was thrusting myself into, what seemed like, an infinite abyss of the unknown. 

I hate the unknown. 

And there I was, forced to confront it with two options. Absolute Victory -or- Complete Failure. New and frightening thoughts were blasting their way into my head. "Did I have what it takes?", "Will I be able to provide enough?", "Will I know how to take care of her?"

"Will I be a good daddy?"

The first birthday arrives and as I stared at my beautiful little girl with cake on her face, with all her loved ones around her, with her smile and those two little teefers.... 

I did it. Here is the proof. 

I am a good daddy.

Happy Birthday, little girl. I love you more than monkey.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Fatherhood Friday - I'm going to make you a 5-dollar-aire

"Ugh. Dad. You Fail."

It's Friday and I'm swamped. With work. With Niamonster's first birthday party tomorrow. With finances. The list just keeps going. 

We're all under some financial hardships and I want to help you. I'm not going to send you money because I don't have any. 

What I do have is a finger. A finger that clicks quite well (among other things... ah-booyah).

Here is my present to you this Friday.
I'm going to make you money by clicking on your ads. All Fathers who posted over on will get clicks on their ads, all people I follow will get clicks, and if you don't participate in Fatherhood Friday or I don't follow you, then please leave a comment here with a link to your blog and I'll do some clicking there too. 

We all deserve a few extra cents in our bank accounts, and I want to be that person who can give you a few pennies.

Happy Fatherhood Friday!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Wacky Wednesday 9 - CONTEST WINNER!

First off all let's get to the contest.

Here was how the random winner was picked (and all approved and over watched by Isabella)
  1. All entries were placed in a spreadsheet. Number of total entries were calculated by user and then they were all given a span of numbers for the number entries.

  2. Then I went to the wonderful and had them generate a number between 1 and 81. AND BEHOLD WE HAVE A WINNER!

!!! BUSY-DAD-E !!!
(clap clap clap clap)
I'll be contact you soon with a bazillion questions.

Niamonster pooped on Isabella's hand today. I treated her like she had the plague for the next 30 minutes and didn't want her touching me. 

Poop really has lost its disgusting factor since Niamonster has been born though. Really, any bodily function (or dysfunction) has little to no effect on me anymore. Vomit used to... pooping used to... 

Now it's just "meh, whatever"

And now some links to far off places because they're funny and I'm really not right now. (I know... Wacky Wednesday and I'm not wacky.)

This link is a collection of IMs, Emails, and postcards from mothers. It's funny because as you read them it is SO easy to see how all mothers are alike.

And finally a tribute to the greatest 4$ your mom ever spent on you.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

You are not forgotten.

Between the hullabaloo of Easter, my beautiful wife getting sick, and a baby who didn't want to sleep I failed to get the Monday post up. 

The results are in, the entries counted, the randomization selection process is all set to go. Isabella will be my watch dog tonight as I draw the winner of the Have Friends. Get Music. contest. 

Thanks to everyone who participated and I'm super glad to have new followers and, in turn, new people that I'm following. 

Look forward to tomorrow's post and the winner of the contest!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Have Friends. Get Music. - The Final Day!

Welcome New Friends!
What is this Have Friends. Get Music. contest, you ask? Read about it here.

Where's the standings?
Well, there are none for two reasons. One, it adds a bit more tension as to who has the most... though, I think we all know Liz has handed a complete ass kicking in terms of entries. The second reason is because I'm not writing this Saturday evening... I'm writing this immediately after I finished writing Saturday's post. 

Isn't the "schedule" option great?

As stated in yesterday's post the final days we'll be talking about music. 

Music. Is. Amazing. 
My art professor would drop kick me in the head for saying something like that. She hated generalizations when critiquing thing. "How is it amazing? Amazing is a cheap word, describe what you mean." 

Fine, professor, this is what I mean:

Think about how intricate sound is in general from a physics stand point. Vibrations in the air shaking the air molecules between 20Hz and 20000Hz or... the frequency a peak and trough(cycles)  happens in one second. This vibration hits our ear drums and is converted to an electrical signal that our brains know how to process. 

But combining complex combinations of these frequencies over a time period creates a pattern our minds can recognize and remember. Simple vibrations in the air can elicit strong emotion... be it love... sadness... anger... angst. 

From vibrations. 

See, this is how my mind works. I like to take things most people take for granted and find the beauty in their workings and in their complexity. Finding out how complex some of the most common things are actually makes them more beautiful.

And you wonder why music means so much to me.

It means so much to me, not just because of it's complexity, but because it also reminds me to never stop looking for deeper and inner complexities of everything around me. To slow down a little bit and notice things around you that have always been there but that you've never noticed. 

Bring in the daddy reference...

I think it's also why I love watching Niamonster grow up. When she was born she was a constant tone, a wave that was unchanging - but the minute she entered this world is also when that wave started getting more complex. Little by little more instruments, more melodies and sub-melodies are added to the symphony of her life and who she is. When people see her and listen to her life I hope they are moved emotionally in many different ways - I pray she continues to always look for new and intricate ways to add to her pages and pages of ledger filled with musical notes of growth. 

What common thing's complexity do you find beautiful?

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Have Friends. Get Music. - The Final Countdown.

Welcome New Friends!
What is this Have Friends. Get Music. contest, you ask? Read about it here.

Contest Update (Liz continues to dominate!)

Name Comment Entries Friend Entries Total
Alix 1 0 1
Andrew's Daddies 2 0 2
Andy 1 0 1
Apok 2 0 2
Bella daddy 2 0 2
Busy-Dad-E 2 0 2
c3 1 0 1
Call Me Cate 4 0 4
Ciara 4 0 4
Daddy Files 1 0 1
DaddyKV 1 0 1
Jason 1 0 1
Jeff 3 0 3
Jim and Garret 4 0 4
Joanie M 3 0 3
Joel 1 0 1
KWG 1 0 1
Leticia 1 0 1
Liz 5 16 21
Mary Ellen 2 0 2
Nancy 1 0 1
Nbauer 1 0 1
Otter Thomas 5 0 5
PJ Mullen 1 0 1
Rob 1 0 1
WeaselMomma 1 0 1

These final two days we're going to talk about music since the contest is coming real close to the end and since the contest is about music anyway.

One Hit Wonders
I don't mind one hit wonders when referring to "one hit song", but I'm really bothered by one hit wonders when referring to "one hit album" and by bothered I mean, "mad they didn't make more". Like New Radicals - their whole album was amazing and, for the time period, was cutting on the edge of a lot of new territory. It made me really sad that they only came out with one album. The opposite side of that would be a band like Europe. What is the one and only song you can name from them? The Final Countdown, obviously. You ever listen to anything else on any of their albums?

I bet if you did, you only listened to it once - cause it suuuuucks. 

I don't want to be a one song hit wonder.

I don't want to be known for one song forever and a day. I would love to have people talk about multiple albums and what their likes and dislikes were about each one... to look forward to the next one coming out... to pass the music around to their friends for free (yeah... we're not the bad kind of band... we make music to be listened to, not to make money). 

It takes dedication and beating the crap out of yourself to constantly push you and your fellow band members to be their best and hit everything right. It also takes an understanding and love to the people you play with so that no one hates you and wants to kill you at the end of the day. Criticism needs to be had and pride should be checked at the door. Did that key part suck or were your vocals flat? Do it again. And we'll keep doing it until you get it right. 

It sounds so depressing but it's not. It helps you, not just as a musician but as a person, when someone is constantly pushing you to be your best. 

I don't want to be a one hit wonder dad either.

That's what I love about Isabella, she constantly pushes me to be a better dad... a better person. I don't want you to think that she's naggy, because she isn't - she just has an expectation of what she knows I can do and what she knows I can accomplish. When I don't live up to my full potential as a father and a husband she'll let me know how disappointed she is. Not to guilt me, but because she knows that I'm doing an injustice to myself by not striving to be the best I can be. 

The last thing I want in life is for Niamonster to grow up into a beautiful adult and have her look back and only remember me for one thing... for one "song". She deserves more than that. I want her to look back and analyze all aspects of me... what I did really right as a parent as well as the things that I could have done better. I'm not perfect and I know I won't play every parent card at all the right times. I'm preparing myself for the "Leave me alone"s and the "I hate you"s while she grows up... but if she can someday, maybe even when she starts a family of her own, look back at me and think, "the way my daddy raised me is how I want to raise my kids"... that's when I'd know that I succeeded in being what I know I can be. 

Don't be a one hit wonder. 

90 miles outside Chicago, can't stop driving I don't know why.

What is your favorite One Song Hit Wonder?


Did the Captain of the Titanic Cry?

Friday, April 10, 2009

Fatherhood Friday 8 - WAR!

Welcome New Friends!
What is this Have Friends. Get Music. contest, you ask? Read about it here.

Contest Update
Name Comment Entries Friend Entries Total
Alix 1 0 1
Andrew's Daddies 1 0 1
Apok 1 0 1
Bella daddy 1 0 1
Busy-Dad-E 1 0 1
c3 1 0 1
Call Me Cate 3 0 3
Ciara 3 0 3
Jeff 2 0 2
Jim and Garret 3 0 3
Joanie M 2 0 2
Leticia 1 0 1
Liz 4 14 18
Mary Ellen 2 0 2
Nbauer 1 0 1
Otter Thomas 4 0 4

Happy Fatherhood Friday! Welcome to all the dads who know they're awesome and blog about it and hang out over at - check them out they're all a really great bunch of people. 

The Battle of the Parents

This has been an on going battle for generations and I am proud to say that our family is gladly carrying on the tradition. I'm talking about the war that wages between the mom and dad to constantly want the child the choose you over the other. The battles that happen where mom and dad are sitting on opposite ends of the room, both cooing and coaxing trying to win out as the "best" parent by having the child crawl over to them first. 

Maybe it's just with first time parents. Obviously I can't speak from any other experience as I only have one little rascal crawling around, but I think it's safe to say that it happens even with more the one child. 

Oh... Shank... We don't do that. 

Pfft. Don't lie to me. Never? Who doesn't love to be number one? Obviously when it comes down to the real love and feelings the winning doesn't matter... but I'm not talking about the deep down rooted love, I'm talking about the surface stuff right now. 

And on the surface it RULES to be number 1!

The Battlegrounds.

Warzone #1: Church
The war wages fierce while sitting in the pews of church. Trying our silent and stealthy attacks against one another to get Niamonster to reach out for the other parent. Victory is audibly silent but pridefully loud as it is custom for one parent to shoot a blazing sneer of triumph at the other parent.

Warzone #2: The Grandparents House
While the gaze of grandparents is upon us, we keep our smiley, lovey, game faces in their perma-grins. But around the corners and in the guest bedrooms it's a cacophony of destruction as Isabella and I blast Niamonster with affection and love so as to be the lucky one who gets her affection when the grandparents are back in view. 

Warzone #3: Amongst Friends
Since we were the first couple out of all of our friends to have a child, this warzone can oftentimes be the deadliest. Without the silence of church and the necessity of being behaved around the grandparents, a friends house can often lead to vile and sarcastic remarks, forceful espionage, and covert operations to sometimes avoid "gaining affection" to simply all out "stealing" it.

I'm thinking of invading her home base.

I literally mean home. With Isabella being a stay-at-home mom, she has conquered the home and turned it into a dictatorship. I'm setting forth a plan to usurp her vile authority and bring peace and democracy to this fine country... er... home. Then, through hidden agendas, secret organizations, and lobbyists I will gain ultimate control and bring in wiretaps, 24 hour surveillance, and "home"land security - but mask it all as necessary to prevent a "home"land invasion of pure and vile motherhood. If all fathers unite, we will prevail as the ONLY source of comfort and love for all of our children.

I'm going in. Who's going to join me?

Where are your bloodiest warzones?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Have Friends. Get Music. - Thursday

Welcome New Friends!
What is this Have Friends. Get Music. contest, you ask? Read about it here.

Contest Update!
First off... people... this is a contest... and Liz is DOMINATING! Good job so far Liz!

Name Comment Entries Friend Entries Total
Alix 1 0 1
Andrew's Daddies 1 0 1
Apok 1 0 1
Busy-Dad-E 1 0 1
Call Me Cate 2 0 2
Ciara 2 0 2
Jeff 1 0 1
Jim and Garret 2 0 2
Joanie M 2 0 2
Liz 3 10 13
Mary Ellen 1 0 1
Nbauer 1 0 1
Otter Thomas 3 0 3

Here are 3 easy steps to give Liz a run for her money (not that I don't want you to win, Liz, but I do love me some competition)

  1. Make a post on your blog about how awesome it would be to have a song written just about you.
  2. At the end of the post tell your readers they can make your dream a reality just by coming to my blog and referring you. 
  3. Tell your readers that they too could have a song written about them by repeating steps 1 through 3 and have them reference both you AND themselves. (double points!)
See? Easy. It's like a pyramid scheme... but for a little slice of awesome!

Also, some reminders. (we'll go unordered this time... Mmm. Lists.)
  • Drawing is still randomly chosen, however the more entries you have the more likely you'll win. 
  • Comments are only allowed on the day of the post. I am disabling comments on previous days so no one cheats. Though, Joanie M. snuck past that one the first day (sneaky girl, you).
  • References only count once for 2 entries.

I can't believe how tough it is to post everyday of the week. I thought the 3 times a week thing was tough... this is brutal. So painful that I'm half tempted just to copy the Apache server configuration text that I'm working on right now... doesn't that sound like an awesome read?

But alas, I would not do that to you... so instead I shall talk about nothing at all. Just pictures from a recent photoshoot with my Niamonster.








Which one is your favorite?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Have Friends. Get Music. - Wacky Wednesday 8

Welcome New Friends!
What is this Have Friends. Get Music. contest, you ask? Read about it here.

First off, the standings since 8:34pm 4/7

Name Comment Entries Friend Entries Total
Andrew's Daddies 1 0 1
Apok 1 0 1
Call Me Cate 1 0 1
Ciara 1 0 1
Jim and Garret 1 0 1
Joanie M 2 0 2
Liz 2 6 8
Mary Ellen 1 0 1
Nbauer 1 0 1
Otter Thomas 2 0 2

I think it's pretty clear who really wants to win this.

On to the meat and potato salad!

Holy Rollers

My wife and I are the religious type of folk, but we're not the kind who vomit our beliefs on you. No one likes to be puked on, so why is it so many people are brainwashed to think that vomiting God all over people is the best way to win them over?

But that's for a different time. The reason I mention this is so that this story doesn't make you go "mwah?"

Isabella and I read devotion every night. If we are too lazy to get to that (did I just hear a collective *gasp* from the holy rollers?), we at least pray. However, we've noted that reading devotion at night together is a lot like sitting in church. 

It's stupid easy to get the giggles.

Oh, you've been there. Maybe not the church part, but the "you're supposed to be somber and behaved" part. There is something about the "behave" aura that makes you so susceptible to laughing and not being able to stop. 

Last night Isabella was getting all up in my grill to start reading devotion. "Read! Read! Now now now nwo nwo nwo nwo wnow nwo nwo wnow". But I couldn't. I can't start until she says 3 words that are tradition before any devotioning can be had. 

"Devotion. The End."

Yes. At the beginning. 

So she was bustin' my balls (wait a minute... didn't he just say he was religious? and he just said "balls"?) and I finally just blurted, "Cripes woman! Are you that antsy to get devotion started? Are you that big of a holy roller now?

She proceeded to start rolling and almost flipped herself off the bed. 

Holy. Roller. (ba-da-dump)

Snot Rocket

I was sort of mean the other night. Isabella has this thing were she can't go to bed without first checking on Niamonster, tucking in her blanket, making sure her binky that has mysteriously found itself under her left leg is easy accessible again. The only problem is that I like to do this too. 

It was about 11:30pm, we had finished brushing our teeth and Isabella has already run off to our bedroom. Our bedroom is connected to Niamonsters bedroom via a Jack-and-Jill style bathroom. So I, being the last one in the bathroom, went to go check on Niamonster. 

As I was walking back towards our room, Isabella starts walking in... I whisper, "What are you doing?". She responds, "I'm checking on her" and I retort, "I already did".

But she proceeded to try and push past me. 

I have this thing. I'm not home as much but I still want my actions with Niamonster to be "good enough". Like if I feed her, I want my style of feeding her to be good enough. If I tuck her in right before I go to bed, I want that to be good enough. Having Isabella copy me or re-do what I did makes me feel "not good enough". (such complex logic here)

So she crosses my path... I quickly turn around and give her a little shove and run in the other direction giggling. 

I hear "thud thud" as her feet catch her balance... and a few moments later a "snnnnerk" and then she starts giggling. She runs back into our room and we're both laughing our tails off. But alas, she fired off the nasal rocket of laughter and that was enough to wake up Niamonster. 

She didn't go back down for another 30 minutes, but it was SO worth it. 

What places do you find yourself struggling to stifle the giggles?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

"Have Friends. Get Music." Day Two.

Welcome New Friends!
What is this Have Friends. Get Music. contest, you ask? Read about it here.

The Standings
After the first day of the contest, here is where we stand.

As of 10:40pm on 4/6
Andrew's Daddies1
Otter Thomas1

For those friends who are new to this site today, you should know that I normally don't post on Tuesday... so this is a little weird for me. Be gentle - I bruise easy.

Work May Suck. But Coming Home Never Gets Old.

Any parent worth their salt hates to leave every morning to go to work. Isabella is a stay at home mom so I'm the unlucky one who gets to wake up in the morning and head off to corporate America to bring home the bacon so that my wife and my daughter can eat healthy, have warm clothes, a roof over their head, and modes of transportation.

It's what I do. I hate being away, but every family member plays a role and this one is mine.

What I DO love is coming home every day. There is never a doubt in my mind that Niamonster misses me just as much as I miss her during the day. She's one smart cookie and she knows around the time daddy gets home from work everyday. She'll wait and listen, and the minute she hears my car pull into the garage she starts looking around for me.

The minute I open the door I hear a "squeeeeee!". If she's on the floor she'll come crawling towards door or if she's in mommy's arms she wiggle so much that Isabella has to struggle keep a hold of her.

And that smile... my god... that smile.

No matter how bad my day was. No matter how good or terrible work is being... I always have someone waiting for me who thinks I'm the cat's pajamas.

Everyday I see that. And everyday I think to myself, "this... this is why I can make it at work and why I go back." Don't get me wrong, I love my job... but nothing compares to being with my babies. (yes... Isabella is my baby too)

When does your little one (be it child or cat or dog or fish) "Squeeee!" for you?

Monday, April 6, 2009

Meaningful Monday - A Contest!

First of all... I'm listening to Andy Samburg singing "I'm on a Boat" to me, and while I realize that it's one of the most ridiculous songs in the world and lyrically it's demeaning to any word that rhymes with another... yet... I find myself constantly singing it... it's a disease that's stuck in me head. There is something about T-Pain's autotuned voice that embeds itself into my brain matter like an alien who has laid it's eggs in my head. 

Anyone else want it in there head? Here. (this is the R rated version)

On to the real purpose of this post. 

You have followers and I want them. I also want to follow those people you follow. You have people's whose blogs you like to read and I want to read them too. 

So here's the deal. 

I play music. I like playing music. I also write it. 

And I want to write a song about you.

Here's how it's going to work. (i.e. Rules of the Contest)
  1. I will make a post everyday this week with a question at the end of the post (just to give you something to comment about)
  2. You will comment on every post. Each comment = 1 entry every day. Only one comment entry will be counted per day.
  3. I will keep track of the number of entries per person and will post them each day in my blog (adds a little spice of competition... yum yum!).
  4. Tell your friends/followers/readers to come here and comment and have them reference you. Each follower/reader/friend that references your name will count as 2 additional entries for you.
  5. Contest starts today (4/6/2009) and ends a week from today (4/13/2009).
  6. On 4/13/2009 I will randomly choose a winner, Isabella will be my witness to the randomness.

What's the deal with the song?
People like free things and I want to give you something for free. I graduated with an Art major but I haven't really used it since obtaining it, so my art would be no good. I write code for a living, but that's one heck of a boring prize. Music was the final choice since I still actively play and write and it doesn't seem like there are a whole lot of people giving that away. 

About the song if you win:
  1. It can sound however I want it to sound and the final product will be a mystery to you until you get it. 
  2. The topic of the song and lyrics will revolve around you or, if you're shy, a topic or theme of your choosing.
  3. I get the write the lyrics.
  4. Give me at least a month to write it, compose it, produce it, and publish it.
  5. It may just be me... it may be our band... who knows?!
  6. I'll contact you if you win and ask you a bazillion questions for inspiration.
It'll be fun because you will have no idea what you'll get... can you handle the anticipation?

About me and music:
While I may just decide to throw a pan down the stairs while screaming your name out loud and using that as a "song", I probably won't. So why should you tell people to come to this blog and make comments?
I fully intend on your song not sucking.

And when the song is finished...
I'll send you an high quality version in MP3 format. I'll also post it on my blog so that all of my new friends will hear how awesome you are through music. Legally, I'll own the rights to the song (read: I get to play it anywhere and anytime I want and don't have to give you money. Sorry.)

Contest begins... 

Today's question for commenting:
What are the top 3 music albums you own that you are ashamed to admit?

  1. Chumbawumba: Tubthumper
  2. SheDaisy : The Whole Shebang
  3. Fall Out Boy: From Under the Cork Tree

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Fatherhood Friday 7 - Germy Germs

Visit Dad-Blogs to get more information on Fatherhood Friday. Great group of people - dads and moms alike!

Well crap. Here I am on Friday and the two ideas that I had just got poopooed by the beautiful lady sitting 6 feet from me at her computer. 

My first idea was to create a contest in which I will shower a lucky winner with amazing gifts of music (and in turn whore readers... cause who doesn't like more readers and in turn more blogs to read?)

But I haven't thought the contest out enough for it to be solid. So consider this a teaser. Something along the lines of: A whole week. 1 comment = 1 entry. Winner randomly choosen. Gets a song written about them or a topic of their choice. Song gets sent to winner and posted on my blog. If you recommended them and they win, you get mentioned in song as well.

My second idea was to put up the song that I sang to Isabella when I proposed to her (you can read the story on her blog)... but as I was laying down the tracks Isabella turns to me and says, "That's more of a Meaningful Monday post"... 

ugh. god. fine! 

So you're going to have to wait till Monday to hear my squawks into a mic on that song.

Let's talk about dirt.

I've met the gamut of people and their differences on germs and dirt. On one end you have the people who always walk around with their little bottle of Purel and their hand wipes, who wipe off the public doorknob before touching it, who refuse to poop in public toilets, who generally just stare at everyone like they are a disease and anything they touch is instantly plagued with the worst virus you can image. 

Then you have those people who think showering once a week is too much and think the dirt adds color to the skin. The kind of people who simply walk out of the public bathroom before you as to wipe their piss hands all over the exit handle leaving you either trapped in the bathroom or forced to share in their tinky.

Thank God most of us are in between. 

So how do you feel about your clones getting dirty?

My wife is always jealous of my immune system. I heal fast, rarely get sick (though when I do it's really bad), and when I do get sick I'm usually over it in 2 days. She, on the other hand, cuts herself with a piece of paper and damn near bleeds to death, and when she gets sick it drags on for about 3 weeks (and I mean "Draaaaags").

I have a little theory that the reason my immune system is a little bit stronger is because I like dirt and I like my body to train itself to like dirt and germs as well. I'm fascinated by the human body because of the way it adapts to keep you healthy, but like anything, it needs practice. What do you think vaccinations are? Dead viruses that your body can practice on. 

For this reason, I'm really ok with Niamonster getting dirty. I'm ok with her crawling around on the concrete and then shoving her fists into her mouth. Yeah, it's gross, but a little dirt and germs are good for her. If she's on a play date and wants to allow her friends to shove their slobbery hands into her mouth... go ahead! Again, gross as all get out, but will it kill her? No.

I like to think that by allowing her to come into contact with germs and nasties while she's at this age is helping her body practice for when a big bad germ or virus comes along.


I can't wait for the day that her and I can play outside and get dirty and play make believe and not care what germs we come in contact with. Of course, her lack of speech and walking is sort of impeding that dream right now, but sooooooon.

Have a happy, germy, Fatherhood Friday!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Wacky Wednesday 7

You ever hear someone giggle at random intervals for short little bursts while the rest of the world is silent? When it comes to noises that I don't make or am not apart of,  I like consistent tones that I can drown out. 

My wife is randomly giggling at her computer. 

I want to throw my shoe at the back of her head right now.

Niamonster's first birthday is coming up. (Let's not even get started on how insecure and uneasy that makes me feel). So Isabella and I are putting together neat little invitations for everyone. I love helping Isabella do her little crafty stuff, so aside from doing all the computer work, I like to cut and paste and write and do that old lady crafty stuff. 

I was going to help her yesterday and said,
S: "I'll address the envelopes."
I: "No"
S: "Uh. Yes. Where is the address book."
I: "No. You're going to cut."
S: "I don't want to cut. I want to address envelopes."
I: "Sit down. Cut little strips this big. You're not addressing."
S: "Why not?"
I: In whiny 6 year old voice "Because I want to do that."

Ugh. My wife: she's crafty. (and she's just my type).... .... (she's craftay).

Finally, I leave you with Niamonster playing the daddy drums (i.e. my fat gut)