Wednesday, May 28, 2008

On Second Thought Let's Just Have Feetsa

"Fred what do you think about having a new baby brother or sister?
"Do you want a baby sister?"
"I know you like pizza sweetie, but wouldn't you like a new baby?"
"Ummmm NO!!!"

"But if you were to get a new baby brother or sister you would let it sleep in your room wouldn't you?"
"Ummmmm NO!!!"
"Where would it sleep then?"

There you have it. We tried, but we can't very well have a baby that is only allowed to sleep outside. I guess this means we'll just have to wait....and that we'll probably have feetsa for dinner tonight.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

And The Winner Is......

The contest to give our bald kitty Buttons a new nickname ended Monday at midnight and the winner is......Literal Dan....and The J's. See Lucy and I couldn't agree on which nickname was the best so we decided to have two winners. Sorry Dad Stuff, but hey you still came in a close second. My favorite Senor Wrinklebum was given by Dan and I've been using it since the second it was submitted. Lucy on the other hand can't help but laugh every time she thinks of Buttons as Fluffy. So there you have it Senor Wrinklebum and Fluffy.

I'll be contacting both winners this week and we'll get together on what prizes you would like to be sent your way! Thanks for all the great ideas and who knows maybe we'll do this again soon.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Re-name Our Cat!! Win A Prize!!

With Memorial Day coming up this will probably be my last post for the week and I thought it would be cool to do something different. As you all know our cat was sorta accidently shaved last week due to a miscommunication on my part. Now that the initial horror has worn off and Lucy has had a chance to pick her mouth up off the floor, we thought it would be cool to give it a nickname.

So far we have come up with:
  • Baldy
  • Velvet Elvis
  • Mr. Biggles-worth
  • Wrinkles
  • Mr. Kitty No Hair

As you can see we obviously need some help. So here's the deal leave me a comment containing what you think Buttons the cat's new nickname should be and if you're the most creative I'll send you a cool prize! As for the prize it could be anything from a slinky to a pop up book to a slightly used Rubics Cube. Contest ends Monday at midnight so leave your suggestion now!! Oh and here's a picture of our bald kitty:

Monday, May 19, 2008

Maynard And The Great Northern Bear Adventure

Lucy's boss Maynard is going bear hunting this weekend in Canada and I'm more than just a little stumped by the whole thing. First off it's not like hunting Bambi in the backwoods of Alabama. Passports, copies of birth certificates, and changes in currency were just a few of the things required for the great trip up North.

Now I'm not going to go into how I'd never be able to hunt yet don't have a problem eating meat, yet I will say if I was to pick up a rifle and play Tribal Provider you can rest assured I wouldn't be going after anything that could eat me if I accidentally grazed it's shoulder instead of catching it between the eyes. I mention between the eyes cause I know I'd never be able to sneak up on a bear in the first place and the only way I'd be able to get a shot off was if it was heading straight towards me.

I've read that the best way to protect yourself from a bear attack is to lay down and play dead. Then again I've also heard the tales of those classic clips from movies such as Faces Of Death which circulated the video stores when I was a kid. I remember one buddy telling me the clip he saw involved a dude sleeping in his tent and being eaten by a bear.....if playing dead is the answer than that shouldn't have happened.

For some reason that scene from Deliverance (squeal like a pig if you know the one I'm talking about) also flashes in my mind. Just thinking about clomping through the woods 1,000 miles from civilization (otherwise known as America) with nothing but a rifle and a hunting knife to help ward off all the pot smokers, puck heads, and wanna be unibombers that have snuck over the border to formulate a plan on "saving America from itself" makes me think that Ned Betty may not have had it so bad after all. I mean at least he was in Tennessee.

I can just see ole'Maynard clopping through the woods, camo head to toe, face painted to match the surrounding trees, one hand on his gun and the other on a Bud Light just in case it starts to get dark out. Once he makes it back I'll make him tell me all about his exploits and give you guys an update. Good Luck Maynard.

Things Heard Around The House

Lucy ”I don’t have anything to wear”

Charlie ”Why don’t you just put on that outfit you wore to the funeral yesterday?”

Lucy ”That was a wedding!!”

Charlie ”Oh. Ha. For some reason I thought somebody had died”

Lucy while driving “Out of the way you stupid granny”

Fred “Stupid Granny!! Stuuuuppiiidddd Grannnnnyyyyy!!!!”

Charlie while driving “Move you moron.”

Fred “Moron! Moron!!”

Charlie “Get down from that chair and leave that stuff alone right now!”

Fred “NO!!!”

Charlie “Get down now or it’s Time Out. Do you want Time Out?”

Fred “Yes”

Charlie “Oh…uh…Too bad. Now get down or no Time Out for you!”

Pops "Fred since you like those sunglasses so much Pops is going to let you have them"

Fred "These are my glasses Pops" As in: They were mine the second you let me put them on.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Sunshine In The Clouds

They say that everything teaches us a lesson no matter how big or small. As Christians we are taught to believe that it is not up to us to understand why things happen, but to merely offer up our lives in faith to God through the Lord Jesus Christ. It is through him that all questions will be answered, all mysteries will be solved, and all hope shall live. With this in mind sadly I’m writing today to tell everyone that our beloved Sunshine passed away in her sleep Friday morning. Though we only enjoyed her company for a week, we did everything we could to let her know that for once in her very short life she was a part of a family.

With her passing comes the perfect opportunity to do something we may have neglected as parents….explaining Heaven to Fred. Instead of changing the subject, in the days to come when Fred asks where the new kitty went he will be told of a magical place where everyone loves and there is no sorrow. Thank you to all those that shared our excitement in getting a new kitty and in our belief that she is now in a better place.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sunshine On A Cloudy Day

Well we finally did it!! Just like elections in years past and more than likely the one coming up (I’ve switched back to McCain) the majority vote in our “Should Fred Get A Kitty?” poll was completely ignored. Since Sassy and BooBoo left us over a year ago, we’ve constantly found ourselves in a debate on if the time was right to bring another bundle of joy into the family…and as you’ve probably guessed by now the answer was no so we got a kitten instead.

Something just flipped a switch inside Lucy and she decided that this Mother’s Day a new kitten would fill every hearts desire. We started looking online, then scanned the pet stores, and finally settled on an itty-bitty kitty from our local shelter. Our trick to picking a pet is if you can give it a name in the first 10 seconds of seeing it and with storms raging all around, Lucy took one look at the gray girl in the corner of the cage and proclaimed her Sunshine!!! That’s right we got Sunshine On A Cloudy Day In The Month Of May.

According to the lady at the shelter somebody just dropped her off in a box one morning before they opened and she needed some attention. We took her to the vet last Friday and though she has a couple of minor health issues such as worms and an intestinal parasite, the Doc assured us that within weeks she be as good as new.

With any new addition to a family (especially one of the Blockhead variety) come a slew of changes. Because Buttons our 8 yr old long hair barely gets along with Fred and because Fred is one lean mean house wrecking machine, we decided the first thing we needed to do was give the kitty her own room. After all every girl needs her space. With a brand new litter box (cleaned twice a day of course), an open window to the backyard, and her own bed full of tiny mice, Sunshine lives in our bathroom….I know that last part sorta killed the mood, but in order for us to ensure Buttons wouldn’t eat her and just until the two get used to each other we have to keep them separated most of the time (mainly during the day while we are working to feed everybody).

Fred loves her of course though he keeps going all “Lenny And The Baby Bunny” on her and we have to watch how close he holds her. He’s even added her to his list of things he must do every morning before he leaves for school. Splash water all over the floor during bath, run around naked with a towel over his head, watch a short episode of Curious George, kiss mommy, ring the doorbell, say “I love you Sunshine”.

Buttons on the other hand has had a bit of bad luck. First off he loves to sit in the bathroom window, but since that’s Sunshine’s room he’s forced to spend his days elsewhere. Second though we are trying to give her kitty chow, Sunshine loves to eat his adult food. He’s paying her back for this though by switching to her food. So the adult cat is eating kitty chow and the kitty is eating cat chow. Last but certainly not least I sorta had all his hair shaved off….not on purpose mind you! We took him in to get all his shots caught up and nails trimmed so Sunshine would be less at harm and I sorta said, “I need the works. Nails trimmed, bath, shots, everything.” How was I to know that in the month of May in the very hot state of Alabama that “everything” to a vet meant shaving all your cats hair off. Lucy was convinced she had been given the wrong cat and then later tried to explain to the vet "My husband doesn't know you shave cats!!!"

Before I leave you with the before and after pictures of Buttons, I wanted to pass along a couple notes on the Freelance writing front. The Best Of Blog awards I’m still the Project Mgr for are into the final stages so go over and vote for your favorite blog and as of tomorrow I’m the new blogger for I should start writing by the end of the week so check me out. It’s been a few months since my lost blog job ended and I was getting more than a little discouraged but it looks like I’m back in the saddle.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Fears Of The Father

It was one of the highest slides he’d ever seen complete with metal steps and a little dip in the middle. I did the typical help him up the steps thing except this time instead of waiting for me to sit down behind him, he just took off. ZIIIPPPPP down he went so fast all I could do was watch from above and pray. The slide was a foot of the ground. Just high enough for his momentum to swing his feet under and send him face first into the gravel. As I shot down to scoop him up and wipe away the tears I was met with a scream joy and the request to have another turn.

I’ve thought about this over and over. As parents we have taken on the task of teaching our children how to make it through this world safely. “We do not touch the stove!! It’s hot! No sir! Outlets are not toys! We hold hands in the parking lot.” These are just things that will eventually lead to our child having common sense. “The stove is hot. It will burn me. I shouldn’t touch it. There are cars going everywhere. I better stick next to Mommy and Daddy.” More and more lately though I’m discovering that there’s a fine line between teaching children the value of making smart choices and passing down our own fears.

I hate heights. Not sure why. Always have. Always will. I never climb anything higher than I am and Lucy always has to hold the ladder while I clean the gutters. I don’t climb trees, I don’t jump out of swings, I don’t sit on top of the monkey bars. Does this mean Fred should be taught that these things aren’t fun? Of course not. Lucy hates bugs. Big bugs, little bugs, bed bugs. Common sense teaches Fred to not scoop up a bug and eat it. Our fears teach him to scream every time he sees one. This is just an example, but you get my point.

If he’s afraid to put his hand on the eye of the stove, I as a parent have done a good job. If he’s 15 and afraid to cook cause he might make something that tastes bad, then I’ve passed on my lack of confidence.

On the next trip up the slide I stayed close, but I didn’t climb the steps. As he sat at the top of the slope and looked around the playground, I waved and made sure that he knew no matter what happened I’d be at the bottom to catch his fall. Trying hard to resist the urge, I didn’t rush up to help him down or slow his pace. Instead I told him he could do it and I was right there waiting on him. “Don’t be scared little guy. I’ll be right here the whole time”

“ZZZZIIIPPPPPP One more time Daddy?!?!”

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Recovery And Relief

Today I want to give a special thank you to all those that kept my family in their prayers over the past couple of days. Both parents made it through surgery with flying colors and by this time tomorrow both will be back home. I’m a worry wart and as morbid as it may sound the moment I heard they were both going in on back to back days, I started considering the odds that I might lose one or both. Even going as far as saying to Lucy Monday afternoon (upon hearing my mom made it through ok)  that I at least would have one parent left come Wednesday morning.

Thankfully it’s official, I am still 100% with parent! It will take a few weeks for them to get back to normal (as normal as they can get considering who we are talking about), but they should be back up and driving me nuts any day now. Thank God and thank you for your prayers.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

In Surgery We Shall Meet Again

My parents have been divorced for something like 25 years and to say they have nothing to do with each other would be the biggest understatement since someone suggest Britney Spears may not be the best role model in the world. Oddly enough though on Monday and Tuesday of this week they will be coming together under the knife (literally) as they both go in for surgery.

Mom (Nani) will be traveling to B-ham, Al. to patch a tare along the walls of her stomach (or something like that. Anytime a woman begins to talk about her insides I start a mental Top 10 list of the best golf shots I’ve ever made). This will be her second trip in a year and apparently the first patch disappeared quicker than my like of anything David Blaine.

Some 2,000 odd miles away in Jacksonville, Fl. my dad will be getting ready for his neck surgery scheduled to take place the next day. I mentioned this a few weeks back and though they are not 100% positive, they seem to think it has more to do with him launching himself off a 30 foot balcony at age 13 while living in Thailand than anything hereditary (of course technically a strong case could be made that since we are practically the same person and though I have never been to Thailand the fact that I once decided I could jump out of the back of pick-up truck moving at 45mph and simply land on my feet proves that I someday too will be going under the knife for neck pain).

As a result of the surgery neither grandparent will be able to pick Fred up for several weeks, of course in the case of my dad it will be more a question of distance than his inability to pick up a 40lb bag of giggling potatoes. While neither procedure is considered “life threatening” complications are possible so I ask that you please keep them both in your prayers as well as myself since I will more than likely spend most of the weekend worrying (props to Lucy for offering to book me on a flight to Jacksonville).

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Building The Perfect Child

I know it’s not possible to do, but as parents our main concern is turning this crying, crawling, crapping, cute thing into a contributing member of society. If when they are our age they are living happy normal lives, well than we’ve succeeded. If they turn out like Brit-Par-Lo-sy….then maybe something more could have been done. This being our second year as parents Lucy and I are learning just as much if not more than Fred with every passing day.

For example we no longer say “Let’s go get some chicken nuggets” or “Nani/Gigi are coming over.” This is a huge no-no! You see in Fred’s mind all he hears is “some chicken nuggets” and “Nani/Gigi”. He doesn’t understand the words “later on” or “on our way back” or “let’s go” To a two year-old there is only now and if you are offering something then you must be prepared to deliver it the moment the words fall from your lips otherwise welcome to tantrum-ville. At this point Lucy and I never discuss what we are planning for the day, we just surprise him and save him from any possible disappointment.

Another thing we are learning about Fred is that he’s quickly setting himself up to be different from other kids we know. Not different in a negative way, but different as in when parents say things like “My kid sleeps in his bed all night” or “My kid loves ice cream” or “My kids stays up to midnight every night” we say “Fred likes to come to our bed in the middle of the night” and “Fred hates sweets and would much rather eat corn than ice cream” and “Fred passes out where ever he’s at by 8:30”

We’ve noticed several other differences between Fred and other kids:

  1. He loves going to school and never cries when we drop him off. As a matter of fact the promise of school is what gets him in and out of the bathtub every morning
  2. He hates to leave school. He literally started throwing rocks at Lucy cause she had the nerve to try and take him home last week. (And yes he was severally beaten on the spot)
  3. Fred likes to watch golf more than he likes Sesame Street. And by watching golf I don’t mean “I like to watch it while he plays in front of the TV” like somebody insinuated the other day. On the occasional Sunday afternoon he can often be seen curled up next to me watching Tiger take on the back nine.
  4. Fred loves to take out the trash. In fact if he had his way that would be how he would clean house. Just throw everything in the garbage can.
  5. He hates the number 1. Refuses to say it and always starts with the number two.
  6. He purposely calls people the wrong name just get a laugh out of them. Na na naaa Gigi! Hahahahahaha. Da Da Da Mommy!! Hahahahaha
  7. Body Slamming somebody is more fun than anything else this world has to offer. Forget the Wonder Pets and Backyardigans, if you’re laying down near my son everything other than the thought of jumping on top of you like a human trampoline just fades into the background.

It seems that here lately everyday ends with Lucy and I taking a mental inventory of how the day went in regards to Fred and what if anything we could have done better. “I shouldn’t have lost my temper” “He did really good washing his hands” “Need to spend more time Potty Training” “Time-Out seems to be working”

It’s these types of conversations that I think allow us to keep up with our progress as we try to mold a happy child. Notice I didn’t say perfect. Perfect is impossible and those who try only create monsters. No, for Lucy and I all we want for Fred is one word HAPPINESS.