Sunday, October 28, 2012


It took 6 straight hours of midnight puking for me to finally blog again. ... I hope you thoroughly enjoy this.  Let me start with how we envisioned the night would go.  For the past few weeks I've been at work from 5:30 am to 5:30 pm, and Saturdays from about 6 to noon, trying to get a grasp on this new position and vault myself ahead of the chaos rather then constantly feel like I'm playing catch up.  Another back story: we finally bought Rosaline a crib.  She had gone from the bassinet to a pack and play where she stayed the last several months partially because we didn't think the crib would fit in our room and partially because we kind of thought we'd find a house to move into "any day now".  Any day has not come but the day she was too big for the pack and play did.  We pulled the old crib out of storage and - walla - there were no screws or hardware whatsoever. ... just a bonfire worth of non toxic, white painted wood.  So, we bought a new crib which came in last week.  This is the first non hand-me-down Rosaline has gotten, so she kind of earned it.  Anyway, I came home from work yesterday at noon and promptly set up the new crib.  We had visions of her wonderful night sleep in an actual bed and not a collapsible travel device intended for a few days on vaca while visiting the in-laws in Tucson.  In addition to that fantasy I was also, personally, looking forward to sleeping in for the first time in ages.  Maybe rising after the sun for once.  So much so that we even went to bed early to make sure I could get as much rest as humanly possible.  Let me stress that it turns out a human and a dad have very little in common.  Aside from flesh, blood, bone and a 5 o'clock shadow, there is nothing human about fatherhood.  At midnight Arianna climbed on top of me in bed crying.  Crying AND covered in vomit.  Gina took her to the bathroom and I was sent to clean up the bed.  Flashback, two nights prior Rosaline had the same incident and I took the sheets outside to shake them out before putting them in the wash.  You know how you shake out a beach towel and the sand inevitably flies back in your face as the bottom of the towel pops with a snap?  Yeah. ... a little more disgusting when it's vomit and not sand.  The taste of that incident still in heavy in my mouth I balled up these sheets and left them outside for the raccoons to fight over; if they were still there in the morning I would hose them down.  The sheets, not the raccoons.  I came back to our room to find Arianna in the middle of our bed with a vomit bucket - long time readers may remember this bucket; it started out as a mixing bowl last December and hasn't been the same since.  For the next two and a half hours we played catch the puke while trying to squeeze in what minuscule shut eye we could in between rounds.  Finally, my wonderful wife - she really is wonderful - offered to take Arianna  (who had run out of undigested food by now) back to her room where she would sit with her while she dry heaved so that I could get some kind of sleep.  Bless her.  Arianna must have nodded off and Gina came back to bed because a half hour later, right around 3am I woke up to see Genevieve standing in the middle of our room looking at us.  "Honey, are you ok?" I asked.  She made it clear she was not by responding with a heavy vomit on the floor in front of her.  Everything that happened in the last few paragraphs played out again with twin #2 this time.  I swear I went to the kitchen to wash out the puke bowl at least 19 times between midnight and 6 am.  Somewhere around 5 Arianna joined back in the mix and it was a surround sound IMAX kind of experience.  Once again my wonderful wife took them both back to bed around 5:30 and sat with them catching vomit and explaining things like why the cat would smell the foul bowl from hell.  Genvieve, thank god, thought it was gross.  So now, running on few minutes of sleep I blog for you once again.  I have no idea if there is any coherency to this post; but as Gina pointed out we didn't finally exit bed for good until 8:30 this morning so, technically. ... I got to sleep in finally.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Pic of the Week

"I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride my bike."

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Five Hundred and Fifty Four. ... It doesn't exactly roll off the tongue.  At least not in the way that 500 or 1,000 does.  But that's how many posts I've entered over the past three years.  Crazy.  On Saturday my first borns turn three.  Three years of their lives have swept over us.  Three years of self improvement has made the man of my past an unrecognizable shadow.  Three years of logging has given me countless hours of joy and reflection and history that would have otherwise been lost to the fogginess of recollection.  Three years of sharing my life. ... our life with you has exposed my soul and filled it in return with confidence and strenght and love.  I've enjoyed the ride.  My regular readers, and I still find it amazing to believe that you exist but sure enough I see your click counts pile up day after day; to you I apologize.  It's not needed, I know.  We never had some sort of agreement that this journey would continue with the depth and dedication it first started.  But I've grown as accustom to writing for you as you have to reading me; and you've noticed, no doubt, that I've been absent a lot lately.  I wanted to take a moment, an official moment, here at 554 to assure you that my absence is not a bad omen.  In fact, it's a wonderful boon for our little family whom you've gotten to know these past half thousand posts.  Out of the blue I've seen my job turn into a career.  I've had a huge question mark filled and with it nearly all of my free time.  As you know my priority when I'm home is my children so you can appreciate that I'm not about to sacrifice my time with them to tell you about my time with them. ... no offense.  And these past few weeks as soon as they've gone off to bed; well, so have I.  The peril of 12 hour work days I suppose.  But tonight Gina is off at a concert and the kids are all quiet and I'm not really sleepy so I thought I'd catch up with you.  So here we are, half way through October.  Rosaline turned 10 months old today.  She's walking, like really walking.   I've counted up to ten steps at a time.  The way she does that pause half way through her journey to regain stability; then she look sat you with that big drooly grin before running the rest of the way into your outstretched arms. ... It's breath taking.  Arianna has become a little jealous of all the attention the baby sister is receiving and at moments we've got her pushing or pulling or trying to block the baby from stealing the spotlight.  It's tough to lose that role of the baby.  But she herself has blossomed beautifully the past few months as well.  I came home today to her riding a tricycle around the living room.  The last time I saw her attempt that her feet were still 2 inches away from the peddles.  But there she was, doing laps.  Last Friday we went to a pumpkin patch and she rode the big swings with the purest grin you've ever seen plastered to her face.  I know they call them toddlers at this age; but when I look at her I see this beautiful woman just growing up before my eyes.  It's terrifying; I'm proud but I'm not ready to meet her yet.  I still want my little tote haired, wide eyed Gerber baby to play princess with me.  And then there's Genevieve.  No doubt you saw the pic of the week, she's 2 inches above the required height line for Knott's Berry Farm's upside down roller coasters.  That's frightening.  But she's not just tall, she's so mature.  Always thinking things through, usually out loud.  Always telling the others how the world works; especially when something is "not nice".  I see Gina in her.  So strong until that last little thing shatters the glass and she crumples into a disastrous heap.  then so easily repaired by something simple like ice cream or a well placed tickle.  They turn three on Saturday.  Have I mentioned that?  It's bizarre for me to think about and you've only had 554 posts to see the changes.  What will the next 554 hold for us?  How far will we get?  How much will we grow?  Because it's not just these little ones that change, it's us too.  I've taken on this career change, this limiting daytime activity which has nothing to do with the the things I really want to do (like blog) because my family needs me to.  Because they depend on me.  554 posts from aimless wandered to driven provider.  12 hour work days are worth 12 minutes of smiles.  Did you know that?  How quickly the pressure and frustration can wear off.  How rewarding life can be if you really live it.  It hasn't taken me 554 posts to come to that realization, in fact it only took about 20 minutes in an operating room nearly three years ago for that to happen.  But 554 posts now stand firm to attest that which I new was true.  This parenting thing. .... there is nothing that the worlds greatest dreamers could imagine that might compare.  If this ends up as my last post ever; that's the point I wish to make.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Pic of the Week

"Does this disturb anyone else? This is an upside down coaster by the way. And she's not even 3 yet!"

Friday, October 5, 2012

Monday, October 1, 2012

Gina's Worst Nightmare

So you'll recall I mentioned a few posts back about our car accident?  Well the other driver's insurance (State Farm) has been very helpful taking car of us, and the 4Runner is now in the shop getting patched up.  But what do you do with three little ones and a busy schedule?  Where are you going to put them all while your ride is out of commission?  Gina's worst nightmare since we first started talking about children was the thought of the dreaded minivan.  Personally, I could care less.  My mom rocked the Chevy Astro my whole life, so a minivan is nothing.  Gina, on the other hand, grew up in a Land Cruiser and a Suburban, so a minivan is so. ... minivany.  As the rental car guy is sorting things out for her he shows that he has a Dodge Caravan (minivan) and a Ford Felx (SUV?).  Come on Ford Flex, come ooooooon Ford Flex!  Oh. ... well, it looks like the Flex isn't available any more; here's your new minivan!  D'oh!  Gina called me shortly after cruising away like a fly soccer mom.  "You know the worst part of this?" she asks me, "I kind of like it!"  This whole weekend we've had large, easy sliding doors that allow us to actually get kids in without fully engaging our lats to suspend one child above the other till they reach their seat on the other side of the vehicle.  We've got more cup holders then we've ever had cups.  No one is touching each other with out great effort.  And, here's the best part (sadly): we can't reach the girls.  I know that sounds terrible, but when they've dropped the same toy for the 798th time it's nice to be able to, honestly, say "Sorry, I can't reach it for you till we get to where we're going".  And that's that.  No argument; they know it's true.  So, while we're not quite there yet, we've gotten a taste for the minivan. ... and I don't think we're as allergic as we thought we were.  By "we" of course I'm referring solely to Gina.