Toddler Eating: from dream to disaster

Alright, one of the biggest challenges with being a parent is feeding your little one. Apparently they need to eat every day…ha, but seriously I tell you, its a lot of work and never quite goes the same each time. It started out great with Noah. Once we started introducing solids, he would eat pretty much anything we tried, yes even vegetables. This kid would eat stuff that even I wouldn’t. Like I’m sorry but a combo mush of pumpkin, peas, and pears does not make any sense and will never touch my lips. Plus, I never trust a meal where every ingredient starts with the same letter. It went so good that I don’t think we ever stressed about “what should we feed him today?”…then…it changed.

I can’t quite pinpoint when everything went to crap. First vegetables got the boot. Then things like chicken and some pasta were evicted. One staple that remained was fruit. Bananas and strawberries were king. Or as Noah calls them “nannas” and “straw”…yeah he’s a little bit lazy with finishing words. Guess he will be a pro when he starts texting…ugh…I really gotta get him to never text like that…anyway, it even got worse than that. At one point, the little man refused a banana. Umm, what? Are you serious? I didn’t even know who he was anymore. It’s like he was a different kid.

He also likes to play this little game where he won’t eat but wants whatever we are eating. He will say “bite, bite.” Of course when we give him some, he just spits it out, contemplates what happened, and then proceeds to ask for more. I can’t decide if he has an early bout of Alzheimer’s or if he just likes messing with me. It has certainly been a task and a half trying to figure out this puzzle. At one point I tried to smuggle in some peas and carrots through mac n cheese. I was promptly busted and given a suspended sentence. I’ve been negotiating a full pardon since but so far no such luck.

So for now, we are just waiting it out. Things have improved at times and then gone back. It’s a process I suppose and we try to come up with new ways to get him interested in more foods. Lucky for us he still loves most fruit so that’s one good thing. No matter what though, we will continue to battle through and do our best to fight the good “food” fight!

-My5am

Family Gatherings Part 1: The Christening

Well it took almost the whole summer to get a bunch of family and friends together but we finally pulled it off while celebrating Annalia’s Christening. I’ll admit first hand that I’m not a hugely religious person but my girlfriend and much of our families are, so I try to respect that as much as possible. The compromise was having the ceremony outside and at her parent’s house, instead of at a church. Not a bad deal. It was a beautiful day and the minister was only an hour late…oops. Apparently he thought it was the next day and had to scramble to get there. It wasn’t a big deal as like usual, we all went with the flow and still made it happen. We had to change the order of things around just a bit but it still worked. We picked two great folks as the godparents. My younger brother and one of my girlfriend’s best friends had that honor. It was a smaller more intimate gathering and it was nice to spend some quality time with some people I hadn’t seen for a bit.

For Noah’s, we picked my sister and girlfriend’s brother as the godparents. We are both now out of siblings to choose from so if any more kids are on the way, we may have to turn to craigslist to find some godparents. I wonder what category that would be under? Is there a coupon maybe?

When comparing both Christenings, the biggest factor was the weather. The most recent one was beautiful as can be. Noah’s…not so much. It was quite possibly the windiest day of the year. Among the day’s casualties:

1. The tent that was set up, flew up into the air and over the fence, breaking in the neighbor’s yard.

2. A plastic dinner plate decided to attempt flight. Its poor planning led to it flying into my brother’s face and breaking apart. He was unscathed but a little hesitant about coming this year, haha.

3. A bird nest flew out of a tree and smacked my friend right in the noggin. It was quite possibly the funniest and most wonderful thing I’ve ever seen. To watch the nest take a majestic flight through the air and deliver a “smack” with such accuracy and purpose was the highlight of my night. My friend has since recovered, although he didn’t make it out to this one…hmmm?

Overall, very happy that we were able to celebrate together as my family and friends unfortunately don’t get together nearly enough. I think we all aim for that to change but it’s hard with everyone off doing their lives and taking care of their responsibilities. I guess though, that it makes the times we do see each other that much more special. I’ll take what I can get.

-My5am

Three months old, three months new

So here we are, 3 months in, and I couldn’t be more in love with this little girl of mine. It doesn’t even seem possible that 3 months has gone by yet. Its funny because she was born with so much hair that I used to joke that “she was born 3 months old”, and now here we are at that time. Like any infant, there has been ups and downs, challenges and milestones. I’m sure any parent can vouch and say that it is damn hard to get through these first few months of parenting a new arrival. It is a non-stop action movie of crying, feeding, messy diapers, no rest, tip toeing when they sleep, bottle making, laundry, bragging, smiling, worrying, sleep checking, and loving.

Overall though, this girl has been pretty amazing and somewhat easier than the boy before her. She has pretty much done most of her sleeping at night which has been a miracle for us. She is gassy though and I’m thoroughly convinced she gets this from mom (hope she doesn’t read this post, hehe). She is also an infatuation to her brother. That kid loves this little girl. In the beginning he would just stare at her like she was the most amazing thing in the world. It has since changed a bit…there is still some staring but often times it is followed by snatching her pacifier or blanket and running away laughing. I’ve tried to explain to her that this is what having an older brother is like. When I tell her this, she usually just stares at me. At that point I clutch my own pacifier and blanket a little tighter, just in case she gets any ideas 😉

She is growing fast as is her brother. I try hard to appreciate every single day and I know that time will continue to move fast, despite my wishes for the opposite. I am a lucky man to be able to say that I’m a dad. I am proud of that title and I hope that someday my little ones will be able to say they are proud of that as well!

-My5am

Doing time with your partner in crime!

It took awhile but we were finally able to get in a date night. They seem to be so far between and few these days. I mean yes, we are a little busier now than before and 2 kids under 2 definitely eats up about 27 hours a day. I will tell you what though. It is important to try and find a way to spend some time with that co-parent. When you become parents you develop an additional type of bond between the two of you. Its a bond that is strong as hell but its not immune to breaking apart if you don’t pay attention to it. You need that alone time not only as a break from the kids but as a way to strengthen all the bonds you have with each other. It might be hard to find a moment to yourselves but make it a priority. Do whatever you have to do to make it happen. On a side note, what if you are a single parent? You still need to make time for yourself. You can still strengthen other bonds in your life, whether it be with a friend, your own parent, or another family member. Heck you can even just go out and talk to a complete stranger for an hour. Give yourself at least that. We can dedicate our lives to our kids but the key word there is “our” lives. At some point you have to pay attention to that fact.

So back to our date night. It was well deserved and well appreciated. We didn’t even have to go out to make it happen. It was as simple as putting the kids to bed a little bit early and having the logistics planned out. Ours consisted of ordering takeout, some good beer, and a couple episodes of Game of Thrones. None of those were even key pieces, the important thing is that we got to spend some time together. We got to kick back, put our feet up, get a little buzzed (oops), and get lost watching “our stories”, haha. It was great and I wish we could do it more. I think we are really trying hard to get a date night at least once a month. Definitely don’t want to let much more time than that get by. In fact our next one is about 2 weeks away. This one will be an out of house activity and it should be fun.

Anyway, like I said, no matter what, find some time for your co-parent and/or yourself. If you are a parent, you’ve especially earned it. Reward yourself once in awhile and you and your children will be better off for it.

-My5am