I am a very proud dad today, not just because Zachary turns one but because my family has gone through a lot this year and we have survived. We bought a house, bought two cars, survived a hellish work environment (both of us) and watched Eli go off to kindergarten and lost some family members.
Jodi has been an amazing mom, she juggles a ton of stuff, being a mom, working full time, coaching soccer, playing softball, having knee surgery putting up with me. She has been a trooper and I appreciate her in ways most people don’t know, and she probably doesn’t know.
Eli has grown up so much and already I am seeing vast changes in him from kindergarten. He is becoming such a big boy and really is beginning to shine. I am very proud of all he has achieved and how he has not let his PDD NOS get in his way.
Zach, crawling early, cruizing and cutting teeth. He has such a wonderful sense of humor, loves to play and is so easy to care for and love. He is a complete opposite of his big brother which is good, and he forces me to stay on my toes. Happy birthday little man, we all love you so much.
For the last few months we have had a Chinese hamster lost in our house. You would think that it would not survive very long in the wilds of my house considering the beast of a dog but every now and then we would see it run across a room late at night and well, we have never been able to catch it. That is until last night.
We really don’t know how the hamster got out of the cage, but we have our suspects. Either way, the little guy has been on the lam for a long time and nothing we have done has helped catch it. It made a hole in the wall by our TV and has been surviving on dog food and water and the occasional dropped fruit loop or cheerio.
So how do you capture a hamster that has escaped its cage? Simple. You take a pot that is at least 10 inches deep (deeper if your lost critter is bigger). Put a towel on the bottom with some food and water and then build a staircase out of books to the top of the pot. You then take a ruler and place it on top of the pot in the middle, like a bridge and place some apple slices, cheese and carrots. You turn out the lights, and the next morning you have a hamster in the pot.
After two months the hamster is as tame as ever, allowing me to pick it up. I am not sure if it is pissed off that it lost its freedom or happy that it is back in the cage with a steady supply of food and water. I just hope it gets along with the other hamster in the cage now.
Parents always want to rush milestones when it comes to their kids development. I remember always being frustrated because both Eli and Zach wouldn’t crawl when I thought they should, or walk, or cut teeth. With Eli, everything was always a waiting game…but with Zach, he crawled early, switched to solid food early and now, has finally pushed out a tooth (appears to be pushing out a few actually).
Now we are just a week away from our trip to Arizona and start of no more bottles. I fear this transition is going to be more difficult than we think. Although Zachary drinks readily from a straw cup and sippy cup already dropping the bottle might be tougher than we think.
As the state of California prepares to vote on the legalization of Marijuana I sit here wondering what this means in terms of future drug use. I have heard all of the arguments for and against the legalization discussion and I am not sure which side of the fence I am on with the issue. It brings up one question in my mind:
Would the legalization of Marijuana cause a decline in the use of other drugs such as Cocaine, Heroin and Ecstasy? Would getting high cultivate a continued effort to get a bigger high? They say, and I am not so sure I agree, that pot is safer than tobacco, not habit forming like Heroin and less damaging to the lungs. But what does it do to your ability to drive a car, operate heavy machines or take care of your kids? Do we think Americans are capable of self regulation in a time where self regulation is a joke? Don’t make me point to McDonalds and the amount of severely obese people in the US….which reminds me, pot makes you hungry and gives you the munchies.
It is naive to think that if legalized that people would smoke pot at home, when they were not a danger to others or it affected their work. Are we mature enough as a society to be able to handle this responsibility? I am not convinced, and I think that the answer has to be negative. Even with 1.4 billion dollars in tax revenue I think that readily available legal pot would just cause more grief in the long run, simply because Americans have proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are not mature enough to do it safely.
Have you ever had one of those moments where you look at your child and ask yourself, “Self….where did they learn this crap?” . I had one of those moments today when my son came up to me and asked me to buy h im some Pokemon cards. I immediately asked him to repeat the request because I was confused….wasn’t pokemon popular like five or six years ago and why would a five year old kid want something like this anyway. Then it hit me, his cousin probably has Pokemon stuff, showed it to him and well the rest is down hill from there.
So I don’t know anything about Pokeman other than it is probably expensive and a complete waste of money so when I came home from yet another brutal day at work I was approached by my child who was foaming at the mouth in excitement that he was the proud owner of 13 Pokemon cards and he was going to explain each character, their special moves and talents and I was so lucky because he had a duplicate of one card and I was going to be the proud owner of it!
So excitedly I sat down, in my suit and did my dad thing, which if you have not guessed, is to show extreme interest in everything they do because, well I am interested in everything he does, and because he was just so happy I had to sit through a five minute explanation of each card….12 times. At the end, I pretty much knew absolutely nothing about Pokemon, other than each character has hit points, abilities and no matter what card I had I was never going to defeat his guy in battle. Why? Because I am too old to understand the magic behind the game. Thanks kid.
The only thing it did do is give me the chance to understand what I can give him as a reward. A pack of cards is relatively cheap, much cheaper than the mustang convertible he wants when he is old enough to drive. So I will go out this weekend, buy a box of the packs of cards and use them as a reward, for each week he does not whine, beat up his little brother, fib or fail to do his chores (help mommy and daddy when they ask and help keep his play room clean) he will get a pack of cards. Awesome deal, considering his last reward was Bokugon characters which by the way, are horrible toys with a cool concept.
So tonight after getting home from my Masonic lodge meeting, I went into his room to kiss him goodnight and saw that he was holding ever so gently his pack of cards. I took them gently out of his hand, put them on his stand and gave him a kiss. I think he was having a pokemon dream because a smile was on his face. I snugged him in, realized that being a dad is awesome (a realization I have often) and went about getting out of my suit, writing a few emails and getting ready for bed.