Friday, March 30, 2012

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Easy Reader

With the twins at the age they're at, it's easy to find blog material. ... in fact, I probably should just move to twitter because I could blog a new entry every 45 minutes.  Some times, on the days I don't blog, it's because I can't make up my mind which one to go with.  But, lost in that conundrum, is poor little Rosaline.  It's not that we don't love her just as much it's just. ... she's so easy.  I mean, easy is great for a parent, it's wonderful.   But it doesn't make a good blog. 
February 9th: Baby slept through the night. 
February 10th: Slept through the night, ate great.
February 11th: Such a happy baby, never complains.
February 12th: Shutting down blog.  Too boring for Internet.

If you're a long time reader you'll recall what the girls were like at this age. ... gave us quite a run for our money - and entertained the crap out of y'all.  But Rosaline is just drama free (at this point), so there's never much to write about.  But I thought I'd give you an example, none the less.  Just so I can gloat a little about how easy this "oop's" baby (I know I said I'd never call her that, but it works well in this sentence) turned out to be.

One of the hardest things about a new born is figuring out how to read them.  They can't talk or understand you, so it's kind of a guessing game between the two.  The parent has to figure out the intricacies of the baby in order to satisfy the current problem.  The girls took us a while to get.  We finally determined things like Arianna's constipation and Genevieve's over tired problems.  We found out Arianna needs to be in charge (even when she was little and taking a breast or bottle) and Genevieve needed intimacy between her and the parent.  But these were cues we learned over the first year.  With in the first three months we've cracked Rosaline's Rosetta Stone.  While the girls were Moby Dick, she's more like reading a Cat in the Hat book.  Here's the example: tired.  You'll be talking to her, or singing or just watching her and she'll instantly go from happy and wide eyed to pouty lipped and puffy eyed.  Response?  Feed, swaddle, lay down.  Result - out in 3 minutes.  It's amazing.  I'm astounded!  It's so quick and obvious and drama free.  As soon as those eyes puff up, it's bed time.  If she's fussy with out the eye's, she's hungry.  If she's crying with out the eyes it's a burp.  Everything else is just happy go lucky.  We were terrified when we found out she was coming, but we quickly learned what a blessing she was with our whole early pregnancy ordeal.  Now that she's here. ... it's like she's the easiest part of my day. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Drop It Like It's Hot

I love the finger pointing that ensues after a kid does something undesirable.  I'm talking with Gina yesterday and she says "Did you teach Genevieve to hang from the back of your pants?!"  This isn't really a question as much as it is an accusation.  I assure I did not, but that she has been doing it to me lately; grabbing on to the waist of my jeans and then dragging behind me like a water skier.  I'm a dad so, of course I don't stop the behavior.  I consider it part of my duties of rough housing - although I don't encourage it, I certainly don't dissuade it either.  She's skeptical, of course.  But I press her as to why.  Turns out they're all at the park yesterday (their little friend Zoe along for the ride as well) and Genevieve grabs to Gina's pants for a tow.  A couple things here: Daddy wears a belt, Daddy's pants fit a little differently them Momma's, and Daddy knows how to keep his pants up despite gravity (somehow I made it through my teens in the 90's with out exposing my underwear).  Also add the Genevieve's a little oafy.  So she trips and as she does she fails to let go of Gina's pants.  So there's my wife, middle of the park, with a toddler and her pants (underwear included, because the tight jeans dragged those with them) piled around her ankles.  Kids always manage to expose things we never wanted the world around us to see. ... like our asses.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012


Ever wake up in the middle of the night and feel like someone's watching you (Rockwell and MJ singing in my head right now).  Well we woke up in the middle of the night to the sound of breathing.  We knew Genevieve was in our room - cause that's always the case, and she's got a cold right now so it was even louder then usual.  We sat up and I told Gina (and I whispered, which is odd because why didn't I just say out loud "Genevieve, got back to bed) "she's in the room somewhere".  This is becoming one of my least favorite midnight games.  I expected she was up by the couch and the TV, but suddenly the rocking chair at the foot of our bed started swaying slightly.  But it was dark and I couldn't make out anything sitting there.  It was like a total Godfather moment or something.  The person sitting in the dark chair, watching you sleep, waiting to make their malicious move.  "Genevieve. ... Genevieve?" .... "Yes Daddy?"  I'm just saying, coming in to our room in the middle of the night is one thing, kid. ... but this is getting kind of creepy.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Thursday, March 22, 2012

An Open Dialogue

It kind of hit me last night, and I don't know why I hadn't really stopped to admire this before, how amazing the capacity to talk to your child is.  I think the older they get, the more you take it for granted, but it's such an incredible thing.  Having Rosaline and the girls at the same time, it's like worlds apart as far as what we can do and how we can interact.  Rosaline certainly loves being talked to (and loves being sung to), and she does her best to respond but when something's wrong and she can't tell us what it is; I feel like I'm on a game show just guessing at the answer.  Hungry?  Nope.  Burp?  Nope.  Tired?  Guess again!  The girls, on the other hand, have this amazing ability to tell me exactly what's wrong - or even what's right.  Arianna was having a little pain when she peed last night (probably because she holds it for so long before she goes) and I finally made her just do it and she whispered "Daddy, that's sooooo much better."  Amazing.  Just a year ago we we're ecstatic at words like "quack" and "please".  Now I get full on sentences and paragraphs and, if you just keep looking long enough an entire novel if you let them.  What a magical transformation we experience.  What a gift to be able to communicate.  How amazing to know what goes on in that little head.  I put them to bed the other night and Genevieve yelled "I love you too much Daddy!" as I closed the door.  I know she does.  I've always known she has. ... but to hear her say it. ... most beautiful thing in the world.  It's such a privilege to watch this evolution of a person.  To have this front row seat to a life in progress.  I can't imagine a better position to be in then that of a parent.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A Roar in the Night

You ever have those tense moments when you're searching for your child's favorite - fill in the blank - and the more you search the more you can't focus on actually looking for it?  Try that in the dark.  It was about 2:30 when I got the call; "Daddy, Daddy, Daddy!"  I stumbled out of bed, noting how exceptionally groggy I was (more so than a normal 2am call).  I made my way to their room and Arianna sobbed "I can't find Roar (stuffed tiger)."  I laid her back down and told her I'd find it for her.  After all, it's a single bed. ... how hard could this be?  Well. ... groggy, dark and panicky don't mix.  Also, that kid has like a dozen stuffed/doll type things in that bed with her.  How could she possibly have noticed that one was missing?!  I tore apart that bed - quietly of course because Genevieve was sleeping and I was pretty sure that Arianna had passed back out as well, but I couldn't abort the mission just in case.  I got down on the floor and looked under the bed.  I slowly opened the night stand drawer, thinking maybe she had done something in her sleep.  I pulled back all the covers and even swept my arm under her pillows - on which she was definitely now asleep again.  Finally, I just tucked her back in and crossed my fingers that the issue wouldn't raise up again.  As I bent in to kiss her cheek, my eyes now adjusted to the darkness of the room, I saw it: a little fluffy tail protruding from her arm.  In her fetal position slumber she had him securely wrapped up in a death grip.  My work here is done.  Now back to bed.

*Can I just go on a tangent real quick?  I really like this TV show Up All Night. ... think it's wonderfully hilarious.  But those two are rarely shown up all night.  And more importantly, where's the kid?!  In 30 minutes of show I see the kid for 2 minutes, and half that's in still shots during the opening credits.  I think we're painting a pretty deceiving picture for future parents here. I'm just saying.  If you're going to call the show "Up All Night" maybe they should just read my blog and recreate some of our scenes. ... in which we are literally up all night, rather then show a supposedly exhausted couple having drinks with friends with out any difficulty in finding someone to watch their 18 month old and then waking rested enough the next morning to go to work/play video games and never once doing so with old puke on their shoulder, just out of their line of sight to know of it's existence.  Just a thought.  Call me, I'd be happy to consult on your show.  Just make sure you've got coffee when I get there.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Monsters Inc.

I was called in for my first "official" monster investigation last night.  As you know we've been getting up a lot at night with Genevieve, but there's rarely been an actual reason given aside from the occasional potty run.  Most of the time she just stares at you blankly or cries.  But last night she got up and I intercepted her halfway between her room and ours.  I asked her what was wrong and she grabbed on tight and whispered "there's a monster in my room."  My heart melted, for two reasons.  1) I feel horrible for the nightmares and the shadows in the night that terrify a young mind, 2) I feel wonderful because her imagination is functioning beautifully.  You see, we don't talk about monsters.  In fact, the only time we've used the word monsters is during Sandra Boynton stories like "The Birthday Monsters" or the ones in "Horns Toes and in Between".  They've yet to watch a movie with monsters or even heard reference to monsters as scary things. .... as far as I know (they're picking up quite a bit from my sister-in-laws that I'm unaware of. ... going to have to watch this more closely. ... I'm talking to you Eleni. ... teaching her the word "butt head". ... tsk, tsk, tsk. ...thanks so much for that lesson).  So for this fear to materialize means that her little mind had to fabricate it; either in dream or in fantasy.  That's a really good thing as far as I'm concerned.  Now to reign it in so it isn't cause for alarm at 2:45am. ... because Daddy's not thrilled about that.  The second time she got up it was toned down.  It wasn't so much a scary monster as it was "someone is bugging me."  I guess it's good if the worst your monster does is annoy you.  I was more worried about being eaten, so she's got it good.  The third time I got up with her (mind you Gina had a couple of her own turns in between mine) it was a "miga". ... which is Greek for "fly" or bug.  I guess if your monster was a fly that might be pretty annoying. ... although I'd think you'd have the upper hand and could easily defeat your midnight nemesis here.  Far be it from me to judge.  I recall my childhood monster quite vividly.  A green hand that would reach over my pillow and grab my face. ... but only if my eyes where closed. ... so I'm not really sure how I knew it was green. ... or a hand. ... or even there.  And I never once actually had my face grabbed.  But I remember being terrified.  So I'm on call, ready for action.  Consider this your warning annoying fly monster!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Pic of the Week (Part 2)

Because it was requested, here's what I got done yesterday. First line is a Gaelic phrase meaning "I love you".

Pic of the Week

"Marking the Occassion"

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Farewelll 20's

It happened.  There wasn't much I could do to avoid it. ... I was destined for this day.  Julius Cesar was warned to "beware the ides of March" (as was George Clooney I believe).  Lucky for him he only had to heed the warning once.  When it's your birthday you get it every year.  Ides of March = March 15 for those of you unfamiliar with the phrase. ... it's when Cesar was stabbed by all his buddies.  Kind of a bad day.  It's also the day that I was born. ... exactly 30 years ago.  So it's kind of a bad day for me too.  I'm sure at 40 I'll look back and realize how awesome it was to turn 30 but, today, I'm a little blasé about it.  You see the best things in my life came during my 20's.  My children, my wife, my education.  What could 30 possibly bring me that's better than those things.  Maybe a pet monkey and a jet pack. ... other than that I don't know how it can compete.  But I thought rather then dwell on the inevitability of aging (and the hair loss that comes with it), I'm going to reflect on the positives. ... nay, the awesome-ives (made that up).  Look how much I've done in 30 years.  Seriously, take a look.  I've done more in 30 years than many have done in a life time.  If I can do that much with the first 30 years, imagine what I can do with another 30.  So let's reflect:
3 kids; wonderful marriage; college education; law school; successful job; run a marathon; competed in a triathlon; backpacked Europe; bought a home; driven across the US; scuba dived (dove?  doven?  diven?  clueless on the past tense here); mastered snowboarding; raced a sailboat; raced a race car; seen Alaska; spent a week at Space Camp at NASA; wrote/directed/starred in my own musical; performed Shakespeare for inner city youth; counseled 10 boys for 7 weeks at summer camp; been a lifeguard; senior class president; learned from wiser men them myself; lost. ... deep; loved hard; won money in Vegas; lost more money in Vegas; taught myself guitar; wrote and recorded an entire album; performed in front of strangers; set a golf course record (worst score ever). ... seriously; stood up for the right thing; had my ass kicked for the right thing; cruised the Mediterranean; swam with a shark (knowingly); been alone in Central Park; stood atop the Eiffle Tower; sat on the Acropolis; traversed Loch Ness; purchased goats for kids in Africa; walked for a cause that had no personal connection to me; listened to those who just needed to talk; given a shit when it wasn't required; written a book; herded cattle; chased off a bear; hunted for dinner; nursed an injured hummingbird (for weeks); been amazed; been horrified; been speechless; played Batman on film; held my breath; discovered who my friends were and made peace with those that weren't; found faith; lost faith; gained strength in myself; hoped; prayed; and learned to accept.

I've led a wonderful life.  And it may be a third of the way through. ... but give me double what I've been given so far and just imagine what I can do with that.  So rather than mourn, I'm feeling excited about what this means.  Let's close that amazing chapter and move on with an even better one.  Starting tonight. ... with my first tattoo.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

What Ever Makes You Happy

Got home yesterday and the lack of sleep Sunday night was obviously taking its toll.  I walked through the doors and could hear Arianna screaming bloody murder from her room, so I dropped everything and rushed to her side.  Nearly 20 minutes of sobbing later I was able to piece together that she had peed in her pull up during nap time and when my sister-in-law (Gina was at yoga) took her to go potty after she woke up her embarrassment manifest in a meltdown.  Oh the weight of the world at 2.  Of course my poor sister-in-laws couldn't figure out what the deal was (oh, the ability of a parent to understand grunts, squeels, screams and moans and "Sherlock Holmes" the rest).  I figured we all needed a distraction so I told the girls to grab their shoes; we were going for a walk outside (it's officially spring and we live in Southern California. ... what right do we have to be in doors while the sun is still shining?!).  I'm strapping the baby in to her carrier - which, in hot pink, looks really good strapped across my chest - and Arianna comes in to the room, hint of stammer still hanging on her lips as evidence of the trauma.  She asks me if she can bring "baby Belle" with her.  Of course, I say.  Now, baby Belle can refer to any one of three Beauty and the Beast dolls that she has accumulated in her short life time, all which are more than appropriate for a walk around the block. .... or so I assumed.  As we head through the door, however, I notice she's not carrying any dolls in her arms.  Instead, she's firmly gripping a new pair of underwear; Beauty and the Beast underwear to be specific.  I'm guessing, in her mind, this somehow ties in to the whole "accident" during nap time and she wants to be prepared. ... but I don't ask.  If carrying a pair of panties with her as we walk around the block is going to make her happy than I'm on board with it.  So long as you don't ask me to start bringing along my Calvin's.

Monday, March 12, 2012

You're The One That I Want (ooh, ooh, ooh honey)

It had to happen last night.  The night after the clocks sprung forward and stole an hour of precious sleep.  The night I was already not looking forward to.  That's when she had to have a melt down.  It's been going on a couple of nights, actually: Genevieve wakes up and refuses to go back to sleep.  We end up doing the same dance over and over and over until, an hour or more later, she finally passes back out.  But last night. ... well last night was just special.  It started around 11:30.  I heard her bedroom door slam and a few seconds later she came trotting around the corner into our room.  I jumped up to intercept her but she blew by me and jumped up on to the couch.  I got on me knees, eye level with her, and asked her if she was alright.  She just stared blankly at me.  "Do you have to go potty. ... did you have a bad dream?"  I pressed her.  Then her lip started to quiver and the word slipped through her lips on a whisper: "mommy."  Oh shit.  You see this type of "mommy" isn't a simple request.  It's an indicator that what ever is offered to her is not going to work tonight.  If she's got Daddy, she's going to want Mama.  If you take her potty she's going to want water.  If you offer a hug she's going to want her space.  It's a lose/lose situation.  And we lost.  Gina got up, and took her back, but 5 minutes later she was back in our room again.  This time the whisper was a full blown wail and Rosaline was now awake as a result.  2 more times this took place until I finally snatched her up (screaming "Mommy!") and put her in her bed with a warning that she better not get up again.  She cried hysterically for what felt an eternity.  When Mama didn't answer (cause she was now nursing Rosaline to get her back to sleep) it reluctantly turned into a "Daddy!"  Well, I'm already slighted so I'm not falling for that trick.  At some point she must have quieted because I woke up later to crash in our room.  I knew she was in there. ... I just wasn't sure where.  I jumped out of bed and went to the couch. ... nope.  The bathroom.  Nothing.  I walked back in to the room puzzled when I wondered "why the hell is there a giant pile of clothes on the nursing chair. ... and why does it have feet. ... two pairs of them!"  Under a blanket both girls tried their best to hide from me.  And I did my best to excude patience. ... which resulted in me telling Gina she had better deal with this cause I was not in the most pleasant mood.  Suffice to say 5:30 came very early this morning and even Starbucks can't seem to get me in gear.  Oh how I miss the bygone days of binkies. ... when you popped one of those in and the lights went back out.  Who's idea was it to throw all of those away?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pic of the Week

"First Date:
I won't be their last,
but I'll make damn sure I'm their first"

Chic-fil-a's "Daddy / Daughter Date Night"

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Daddy, That Sound?

You remember being a kid, right?  At bedtime you would do everything you could to avoid actually going to sleep (god how things have changed in adulthood. ... what I wouldn't do to go to bed).  You'd squeeze out every drop of moisture on the toilet.  You'd ask for some water; because after squeezing out every drop, naturally you were dying of dehydration now.  You'd need your closet checked for monsters and you'd need medical attention for that tummy ache and the cough you attempted to dislodge a lung with.  And then there was the scary sound syndrome.  Every noise (and even the deafening silence) needed to be investigated.  This is Arianna's favorite.  "Daddy, Daddy, Daddy!" "Yes?" "That sound?"  We've been playing this game a lot lately, and she's caught on that I'm kind of a softy for this.  I don't buy the "I'm thirsty" or "I have to potty" shtick.  I watched you down a gallon of milk at dinner and I've watched you pee 5 times in the two hours since - including a stint 5 minutes ago.  I know you're in the clear right now.  But the scary noises and the monsters under the bed. ... I feel bad because that can (not that it is, but it could be) a genuine fear.  And that's what dad's are there for, to chase away the scary things.  Last night got to be a little ridiculous though.  Things started off great (well a little bumpy in that Rosaline has become a nipple snob and wouldn't take the bottle, so I just put her down); the baby passed out instantly at 7:15.  Go Diego Go rescued lemur or something like that and the baby bird found his Momma during story time.  Everyone tucked in cozy (and medicated up, because once we clear a cold in this house we find a new one 2 days later) and lights were out with almost no tears.  I sat down on the couch and pulled out my iPad to go over some notes. ... and it started.  "Daddy." .... "Daddy!" .... "Daddy, Daddy, DAAAAADDDYYYYY!!!!" "What is it, honey?" "That sound?"  "I don't know honey, it was just the wind blowing outside."  Close the door and back to the couch.  "Daddy!" .... "DAAAADDDDYYYYY!" "What Arianna?" "That sound?" "That was just Karma shaking and her collar jingling, close your eyes and go ni-nite."  At this point Genevieve is pretending to be frustrated "Sissy keep waking me up," with a "harrumph" for emphasis.  Needless to say this went on and on another 6 or 7 times.  I finally just told her every noise she heard was her Nouna (Aunt) Alkisti. ... which wasn't fair to Alkisti but she was the only other person home.  "That's Nouna going up stairs." "That's Nouna taking a shower."  "That's Nouna making a sandwich".  My favorite was when she responded "No Nouna make sandwich, Nouna go ni-nite."  Like she should talk!  This continued until Gina came home from class. ... at which point she went in once and the issue was resolved immediately.  That's one thing you gotta give mom's credit for: they don't buy in to the BS excuses.  That sound?  That's the sound of a softy.  AKA Dad.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Turns Out We Don't Know Everything

Second time parents seem to think they've got all the answers.  Especially those of us with multiples the first time around.  We're awesome.  We've done it all.  There's nothing this second time around that we didn't learn from our mistakes on the first the time.  Right?  Well, turns out that may not be accurate.  This past weekend we stumbled upon something. ... sort of second hand.  We kind of had a wild weekend (as wild a weekend as parents of three under three can have).  Friday night the older girls had a sleep over with their cousins at my moms house and Rosaline stayed with my sister in law so Gina and I could go out to sushi for  a friends birthday.  Then Saturday (after a morning soccer game and an afternoon at the beach) the girls went down and we snuck out afterwards (the other sister in law in charge this time) to go karaoke with my mother and father in law (and one of my mother in law's gay friends who brought down the house with the most amazing performance of "Fancy" I've ever encountered. ... OK the only performance of "Fancy" I've ever encountered, but I really can't imagine anyone - including Reba - doing it better more entertaining).  Then Sunday, after a princess birthday party, we ran up to Hollywood to see Spam-a-lot at the Pantages (all the in-laws home and in charge for that night).  So what did we learn acting like childless heathens straight out of college?  Rosaline likes an early bed time.  Go figure!  With the girls they were going down around 8 at this age and it worked perfectly.  They were tired enough to sleep, not too tired where they couldn't and not too awake either.  It was their happy bed time.  We figured the same would be the case for Rosaline and that's what she's been doing.  By no means was it rough going down.  She would just struggle for an hour, maybe a little more, until she finally fell asleep.  If anything we thought maybe we should keep her up a little more.  But this weekend she was being put down much earlier, only a little after seven.  And, go figure, she's out like a light every time.  Here we are, thinking we're pro's at this, and turns out the kid likes to go to bed earlier.  Maybe I should rethink my stance on lima beans.  Perhaps the girls are right and they really DON'T taste good.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Someone To Look Up To

I've posted a lot about the effect that Rosaline has had on the girls, how they've responded to their roles as big sisters and how it's changed their little world.  But with Rosaline still in the blob stage of infancy there wasn't much I could write about the effect the girls have had on her.  Now that we're coming up on 3 months she's been getting so much more active.  She's constantly smiling (one of the happiest babies I've ever seen) and she gets real excited about things - like when I come home and hover over her on her play mat. ... legs start kicking and she coo's like a Central Park pigeon through the toothless grin.  But my favorite thing, what melts my heart like butter, is when she watches her big sisters.  She adores them.  They fascinate her beyond comprehension.  Whether they're looking down at her and interacting intentionally or just playing in the nearby vicinity, her eyes are wide and fixated on them.  She gets really excited when they come with in range of her and if they dane to talk to her she "talks" back with ferocity.  The other day Genevieve asked what she was doing and Gina told her she was talking to her.  "What's she saying Mama?" was the response. "Nothing yet, she's still learning.  The more you talk to her the more she'll learn how to talk back to you."  Challenge gladly accepted.  I know we're still in the honeymoon stage.  I know when they're 7 and she's 5, the second graders won't want that baby kindergartner following them around school.  I know when she's 16 and they have share the car with her it's going to be the end of their world.  And I know when she's not allowed in their make-up or to go in their room that life as we know it will come crashing down.  But under it all I'll remember these moments.  These moments where the truth was not cleverly disguised by the need to be cool.  These moments where they looked down on her with love and she looked back up with admiration.  And that relationship will always be there.  Forever.  Even if it's incognito.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Pic of the Week

"Partied Her Under the Table"

little explenation: this was from our cabin trip last weekend.  We woke up around 2:30 and went to check on the girls.  Arianna was not in her bed and we couldn't find her anywhere.  Finally, Gina noticed something under the kitchen table.  Arianna was passed out. ... with "Roar" of course.  Not sure how she got there. ... not even sure she know's how she got there.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Lesson's Unknowingly Taught

I came home yesterday to an interesting scene.  Gina was nursing the baby on the couch, while Genevieve sat in the rocking chair holding a stuffed penguin across her chest.  I said "hi" and leaned in for a kiss to which she told me to "be quite, feeding baby gala from bobo (milk from boob)".  She then sat and "nursed" her baby for 20 minutes or so - pausing only briefly to burp her and try and put her down - which elicited stern demands of "be quite, close eyes, go sleep, no talking!"  Here's the best part: it wasn't until about 10 minutes in that I realized she had even gone as far to steal a breast pad and stick it under her shirt.  Kids are like sponges.  Just because you don't think you're teaching them something doesn't mean they're not learning it.  Simply by watching Gina feed Rosaline for the past two months, the girls have equated the concept of breast feeding with being a mother.  On a side note, I should mention that this weekend (we were at the cabin) I took Arianna to the public restroom in Arrowhead to go potty, where she also observed me using a urinal before we left.  Now she pretends to pee on everything standing up (so far it's just a pretend situation).  "Look Momma!  Me pee on ball!"  Stay classy Arianna.  So if things stay on course we appear to have raised a wonderful little mommy and a frat boy.