Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Separated at birth?

I can't decide who he looks more like here:

Honus Wagner?

Or Clyde the orangutan?

It's a toss-up. I'll be happy if he grows up to be like either one.

Monday, February 23, 2009


I know that I had promised the final chapter in the Finn Feeding Chronicles, but I must lead off by saying that I am a mere shell of the man I was when I wrote that first part (as small as it was). Kitty took off on a business trip to California last night, which is her very first time away from the Little Bud other than her birthday when he had an overnight sleepover at Torry's house -- all of 4 blocks away. This was a very emotional moment for the Mommy and a slap in the face with a poopy diaper for the Daddy. Turns out the Mommy is an integral cog in the machinery of the 2008 Ninja model of baby. I shall never again overlook or understate the importance of the Mommy to the efficient execution of the daily undertakings, in particular the morning departure and bedtime rituals.

Kitty, you're amazing. Don't ever go out of town again. At least not until Finn is of legal drinking age, which I'm hoping is soon lowered to 11-months.

But back to the point...

As I was saying, while the dinner menu has expanded exponentially, happy eating is a rare occurrence these days. No matter what kind of delicious spread that we put in front of him (like the one above... OK, maybe that was our dinner, but you get the point), unless it includes toast or cheese, it only takes about 5 minutes for the issues to begin. It starts small, with maybe a shake of the head or a craning of the neck away from the spoon but soon degenerates into a full-on Cry Fest, the likes of which have not been seen since Ricky got voted off of Season 4 of Project Runway. The good thing about a crying baby is that its mouth is open and prime for some spoonfuls of food. The bad thing about violating a baby's mouth like that is that the food very rarely stays in there for long.

Turns out that cats are not nearly as good at licking up floor food as dogs. Maybe we just need better cats.

Of course, there is a big, shiny bright spot to having the boy all to myself this week. One word, all in caps: PIZZA! As I believe I've discussed previously, I've been eagerly anticipating the day when there was another lactose & wheat tolerant member of the family to split a pie with and it looks like that day is here.

At this point, Finn's pizza intake is limited to some crust, sauce & cheese. We're not quite ready for pepperoni. At least, Daddy's not ready for pepperoni diapers1.

At least not until Mommy gets home.

Behold the Ninja's first bite of pizza. And behold the feeding trough around his neck. That thing has reduced floor waste by up to 87.5%. Who needs cats?


1 Thanks for that image, Kate.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday Night Lights with Aunt Stacy (by Finn, translated by Aunt Stacy)

It’s been about a month since Aunt Stacy was over, and I’ve changed a lot. Let me set the scene:

It’s 6:30 p.m. on a Friday after a long week of wooing the babes. Chicks dig me. It’s in the stars. Enter: Aunt Stacy at the tail end of dinner time. While she missed the Feeding Olympics that is meal time ‘round these parts, she got to see the aftermath, and let me tell you, I think she was impressed. I gave her a little smile with a mouth full of rice, and the girl actually swooned. She’s so toast. And I just buttered both sides.

Mom gave the reminder low-down on the Finnja Night-time Ritual, and then off to dinner they went, with grand Bye-Bye Rituals all around. Then it was time to impress Aunt Stacy with all my progress since she was last here:
  1. I’m walking! And it’s so much fun! I like to put my hands up over my head as I jaunt around – it helps me keep my balance, and it impresses the ladies.
  2. I can say “Da-da” and demonstrated this when The Rents were leaving. Mom seems to tolerate this, since she knows I think she’s the bee’s knees.
  3. I’m much more snuggly than the last time we had our date night. Mom & Dad think this is their date night. Ha! (See: Babes, wooing of.)
  4. I can sing along to some of the songs on my Leap Frog Fridge DJ, and like to bounce up and down to “Old MacDonald” while Aunt Stacy sings the actual words.
  5. I have more teeth, and rockin’ hair, and am so cute it’s ridiculous.
After a half bottle of the house milk on tap, we had some living room play time. I really like my new wood stool that has the letters of my name as puzzles pieces on the top. I told Aunt Stacy that I made it, and she nearly fainted from awe. She digs me.

We hung out a bit in the kitchen, too, playing with my toys in there, and I sat on her lap as we read my “First Words” book a few times, and I even helped turn the pages. I rock. She showed me a magic trick on how to turn the pages by themselves. I’m going to use this at school and impress my friends.

Around 7:35 we went upstairs for play time in my room. We did a few laps in the laundry basket that mom showed Aunt Stacy. A couple of pillows in there for me to sit on, and that thing zooms around like a race car. Love it! We played with my cars for a few minutes, but I really just wanted to be held and have snuggle time.

She got the hint, so it was wet diaper change and into my sleeper sack and time for books. See, this is where I really have her. This girl could read for hours -- it’s awesome. We read The Hungry Caterpillar, a book about fireflies, Hop on Pop, another Dr. Seuss book, Where the Wild Things Are, and my favorite ending book: Goodnight Moon.

What more does a boy need: To get his Friday Night Lights on with his Aunt Stacy, have snuggly time in my rocking chair, with my binkie and Hootie the Owl, and a library of fascianating reads. It seems Aunt Stacy was able to figure out the swaddle this time1 and within a few moments, by 8:15 p.m., my eyes were closed and I was all “Peace Out”.

My name is Finn. I’m a baby ninja. That’s how I roll.

1 Ed. note: OK, maybe we're not entirely done with the swaddle. So sue us. Or better yet, sue Aunt Stacy.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Le gourmand

Now that we've got the sleeping & eating thing down, the next skill for the Ninja to master is eating. As you can see in this movie, he's definitely better at being cute than he is at getting food in his mouth.

This is totally fine, of course. Any homely loser can eat (see: Daddy), but cuteness will bring the world to your doorstep (see: Mommy, Derek Jeter, Bret Michaels).

Unfortunately lately, the cuteness while eating seems to be harder and harder to come by...

To be continued

Monday, February 16, 2009

Walker, Baby Ranger

We finally figured out what we could use to motivate Finn to walk for the camera. If you watch this 4-second clip until the end, you should be able to guess what it is.

Finn gusta Tecate.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

The juice is loose

I don't know what's going on around here, but somehow our laptop caught the plague that's been ravaging our household for the past month. So while it's in the shop, I'm typing this on my work computer, which of course I have at home due to my insane 24-hour commitment to the success of my company.

That, and I figure if I take big ticket items like this home with me at night, I'm less likely to show up at work tomorrow and find out that my key card mysteriously doesn't work any more. They've gotta let me in the door if they want this laptop back. And once I'm in, I know a million places I can hide for weeks waiting out the economic downturn, surviving on the free soda and PB & J sandwiches.

Of course, if I do that, I miss out on the exciting happenings around here like the fact that our 10 1/2 month old son is finally free of his swaddle.

It turns out that 10 1/2 months is a long time to swaddle a baby. I remember thinking that at 4 months, we were in the minority and reading about people that still swaddled at 10 months and laughing at their inept parenting skills. Well, even if we didn't win PEPS, we definitely out-inepted those folks. Score.

The Miracle Blanket swaddle blanket has been our best friend for as long as I can remember, but it is nice to let it go. For one, we only had one of them, so it was always a challenge getting it clean between naps and nighttime if someone (Kitty) inadvertently peed on it. B.) It was intimidating to our babysitters, and the last thing you want to do is scare your babysitters away. And 3., Finn had outgrown the intended wrapping method so long ago that we had to tie it so tight that it felt like we were wrapping up a little mini-mental patient for his Thorazine treatment.

For the past week, though, he's been sleeping on his own. It definitely takes a little longer for him to fall asleep, so we get to listen to him discussing current events, like the latest episode of Rock of Love Bus, with his Yankee teddy bear mobile for about an hour every night on the monitor. But once he falls asleep, he's out until morning.

Of course, he's decided that morning now begins at 6 AM instead of 7:30 AM, but that's OK. I need to make sure I can get into work early enough to scope out the best hiding spots anyway.

Since I don't have our computer, I don't have a new picture for you. You'll have to make due with this classic taken before we had the Miracle Blanket, back when breaking out of the swaddle was cute and not grounds for a knuckle sandwich.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Know when to fold 'em

Here it is over a week after the last post and we're still sick. I suppose this is what we deserve after nearly 4-months sans sickness, but 3-weeks of alternating cold & nausea does not a happy household make.

The one bright spot that we had been looking forward to was kicking some serious baby butt at PEPS yesterday. We didn't get nearly the amount of training that we had hoped in, but we were still confident that at 10-months, the Ninja's 4-step stumble would put him in position for gold in the monthly PEPlympics. Particularly because only two other couples were coming.

Boy, were we wrong.

Sam (pictured below towering over his less evolved playmates) came running in the door and proceeded to walk/skip/hop around the house the entire time, only dropping to his butt long enough to place Finn's delicious toys into his mouth. That immediately forced us into defensive mode as we quickly tried to rewrite the rules of the competition. We tried to declare Finn winner of his age group, which would have protected him against Zoe (who is at worst, his equal) but that wouldn't fly against Sam either since he's only a week older.

In the end, we had to concede. It's clear that PEPS is a lot like poker. The three that showed up this month all had a hand to play, since the kids were all mobile. The problem is that we went all-in with our mediocre hand and were crushed by Sam's nuts.

Sorry, couldn't resist.

It's safe to say that we're going to be playing our cards a little tighter from here on out, keeping an eye on who's in each week before committing ourselves. We took Finn to the pool last week for an intro to chlorine, so maybe if we play this right, he can be the first baby with athlete's foot.

Try and call that hand, Sam.