Thursday, May 28, 2015

Nothing like a Baby Laughing

Me: "Rome wasn't built in a day, but it was sexy since day one."
My Wife: "No that's not a saying."
Me: "It should be."
My Wife: "It absolutely should not."

I still stand behind those words and while they came up in a situation not related to parenting, they so much do apply to parenting. Raising a child is very much a day by day grind of teaching and learning to build a well rounded adult, but the foundation of that child is wonderful from the very beginning, that child's joy and laughter.

This notion can very easily be forgotten in those sleep deprived early months and also can very easily be overlooked in the constant interaction and attention between parent and child. But those moments when a parent does something silly and the child bursts out laughing are priceless, simply amazing, and indescribably heart warming. This means that all parents must train to be stand-up comedians. Love and affection are nice but gut busting laughter is the key to a child's heart. Make a child laugh and he will follow you around for more laughter. Do the same joke over and over and they will require you to step it up and be funnier. A child is the daunting critical eye of a drunk bar crowd, the over-inflated ego of newspaper movie critics, twitter ranters, and disapproving family members all wrapped into one sweet little boy begging, hanging, agonizingly drooling (and maybe also literally drooling) for the rush of joy and laughter.

A day with laughter is a day well spent. And each good day is one more day of building Rome.

Lucha needed a cone and Gunner was upset she wasn't wearing it....
Trying to get INTO the crib....
"What did I do?"....
 Learning some French....
 Bath time fun....
Hanging out with Maw Maw who we miss dearly....since the first day they met, Gunner loved each time he was with her. Simple joys....

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Joy of Grandparents

One of the things all prospective parents hear over and over from people who have recently gone through baby rearing: thank god for the grandparents. When Gunner was first born, my wife and I were adamant about getting him on a schedule for his own comfort and development and for us as parents for our sanity and adjustment to life as parents. We constantly told ourselves "we can't wear them out because we will need them for the terrible two phase". So we did a lot more of year 1 on our own than most new parents probably do and used the grandparents far less than we probably should have.

But this past week, we had a wedding in Mexico and we left Gunner with the grandparents. Now the first time we left Gunner was at 10/11 months and we video-chatted twice a day as well as stalker checked the crib monitor on our phones while he was sleeping. This trip, radio silence. You see, despite how much more "developed" Mexico has become, they still seem to struggle with the basic concepts of air conditioning and wifi/cellular service. My ATT "Mexico Specific" international plan that was supposed to work for 30 days, lasted for 7 hours. This lack of connectivity meant my wife and I just had to trust the grandparents completely....no check-ins, no quick tips or pointers, no schedule or routine reminders.

When my wife and I realized this was the case, we didn't panic or stress. We laid back in the beach sun with Mexican tequila and great friends and had a great time.....and when we returned, Gunner was fine, house was in one piece (except smelt like burnt popcorn), and the grandparents were ready for more....thank god for the grandparents.

Now a ton of missed photos...

First Jazz Fest....
 Oh crap....starting young....
First time brushing teeth....
"You gotta get in on this"....
 Awesome party....
Eager to run for beach fun....
 But he still doesn't like the sand....
 But loves the water spouts....
 Happy and chubby....lethal combo....


Sunday, May 3, 2015

Baby Talk

A friend of ours made a comment, "I hope when I have a kid, a 3 year old pops out." A year ago, I would have agreed. In Gunner's first 5 months and as I am sure my blog posts would concur, I would not have wished child birth on anyone. I deep down was rooting for a mass sterilization of the human race so no one would endure the same hardships as us. While I know the "terrible two" phase is approaching and we are seeing small signs of its arrival, right now is surprisingly fun. Everything is either in a nice routine or an experiment that everyone is curious about. New foods, new toys, new people, new activities are all met with wonderment and not resistance. Now after the experimenting, things may or may not be accepted, but the adventure isn't a meltdown. It is cool. Hopefully, all kids go through this phase so we parents can also enjoy these experiences and we aren't going straight from "baby cranky" to "bossy cranky".

With Gunner approaching 14 months old, our efforts are focused on talking. We have currently determined a 5 word vocabulary, "mama, dada, yeah, naw, yum". "Mama" and "dada" are associated correctly but they are also his sounds of choice about most everything. The only words he says on his own and in context is "yeah" and "naw". It's great. If he wants something, we ask him, and he smiles and says "yeah". If we try to give him something he doesn't want, he shakes his hand, waves his hands to block us out, and says "naw naw naw." Need a visual.

Me: "Gunner, you want to wear this hat?" Gunner: "Naw naw naw."

Me: "Gunner, you want some yogurt?" Gunner: "Yeah."

Gunner's use of "yum" is only as a regurgitated word. It comes from Dora and Diego, "yum yum yum delicioso", and after we start eating, either my wife or I will say that phrase and Gunner will mimic the "yum yum yum" part. This phase of beginning to talk is fun.

But if you want to see some fun baby stuff, try to teach a one year old to snap his fingers. My wife has gotten Gunner fascinated with snapping and watching the adorable futility and joy of him trying to is just too funny and cute.

Our version of the Rum Diaries....
 Chilling with my boys....
 "Did I sleep through the match?"....
City Park fun....

And Crazy.Stupid.Love is a fantastically underrated movie while Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade never gets old....classic weekend movies on TV.