Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Movie Character Meme

This meme was sent to me from none other than the famous Clark Kent from Clark Kent's Lunchbox! He bestowed upon me the task to introduce my picks for the 10 best movie characters... here is what I chose..

Reed Richards of The Fantastic Four

Harry Potter of the Harry Potter series

Andrew Largeman of Garden State

Peter Parker in Spider-man movies

Harry Tasker from True Lies

Clark Kent/Superman

John Smith of Mr. & Mrs. Smith

Ferris Buller of Ferris Buller's Day off

Han Solo of Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back

Mikey Walsh from The Goonies

My picks to carry on the legacy are...


wise young mommy

at home dad

fit dad

raging dad

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Just a lil' funny video for your day...

The curious case of the receding hairline...

Okay, so Mauldin has started losing his hair…

We laughed about his cousin, Grant, whenever this happened to him. The “skullet” is almost in full force.

Mauldin actually came out with a full head of hair and now we are lucky for him to have a decent comb over… Laura washed his head, a couple of days ago, and the little brush ended up with almost ½ of what was on his head! I know, I know, it will grow back… and yes, cradle cap, blah blah blah, we have heard it all..

But, can’t I just complain about it? I mean we are gonna have to go buy head-n-shoulders for our lil' man! He has dandruff worse than... well it's bad.

Honestly, he has a really cute face so it doesn’t really matter…

Looking forward, I know he will have a full head of hair again, some day, I just wish that day was sooner than later. One second thought, we should have had his spring pictures taken sooner…

Oh well, we still have his baby announcement photo to be taken… guess we will have to make do.

Do they have baby Rogaine? Just kiddin!

Thursday, April 16, 2009


It occurred to me, the other day, on Easter, that I was hitting a major milestone along with my son… I was having my 29th Easter and my son was having his first!

A few days prior, to Easter, I had my 29th birthday. Now, please understand, I know 29 is just a number, but coming to grips with the idea that I was actually that much closer to 30 kinda freaked me out.

Has my hair really receded that much? Has my waistline grown more? Is my back going out more than normal? I can say yes to two of the three and I won’t specify which ones. Hint: I will say that I noticed my age the other day when I went to the gym… I haven’t worked out pretty much since Mauldin arrived. I certainly haven’t had the time, but Laura is losing weight faster than the speed of light. However, it seems I am gaining what she is losing. I walked into the gym and proceeded to hop on the nearest treadmill… I wanted to do the elliptical machine, but all were taken at that moment. Of course, the machine I want to use is… well, in use. I run on the treadmill for approx. 10 minutes, give or take a second to tie my shoe… and head over to the bike machine because the Elliptical was still being used. It would be my luck as soon as I start the bike someone finishes up on the Elliptical machine and someone else hops on right away… I had no idea they were so damn popular! Anyway, I ride the bike for another 15 minutes and head home… My muscles were already burning from that small amount of cardio – what is wrong with me? I used to run a six minute mile, although, the key word was “used” to. The next day, while I am at work… I take a deep breath and “Ohh,” my back… some muscle, I hadn’t used in a while decided he was pissed off and needed a moment to flare up and screw up my day…. Sorry, week.

Now, it also occurred to me, while on said treadmill, Mauldin and I are 28 years and some days apart… now I guess that makes me qualified to say “trust me, I’ve been there” and “because I said so…” when he gets old enough to ask me questions, but honestly, when you think about it, I’m a full-blown adult! At least, I am considered one by law, although, I don’t feel it. My mother-in-law, Carol, gave me a gift card to Abercrombie and, although, it is a very nice gift, should I still be wearing Abercrombie? I walk into the store and gag at the amount of cologne they spray in the air and are, more often than none, given shifty and dodgy looks by the other patrons and employees of the store. I mean I know I am not going to switch over to denim from Sears or JC Penny, but I don’t want to be one of those parents who walks around still wearing stupid clothes that I wore when I was 22! I have some choice t-shirts that I think are pretty funny, but I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing out in public, anymore.

For example:

Horn if you’re Honky

Original Foreplay

I’m naked under this shirt

Nebraska: It’s a great shukin’ state

I mean, my wife and I actually made an agreement, at 26, to cease and desist shopping at certain retailers after 28, because it just makes us feel old when we go in there… But, am I really there? Will someone nominate me to the show “What Not To Wear?”

I am seriously not sure if I would feel comfortable having such restriction just because of my age… however, when we are out and about we see parents who have piercings in odd places and baggy jeans past their butt with huge chains, etc… while strolling through Target with their children in tow. I do not wanna be “those parents.”

So, I am currently working on sifting through my closet to retire many of my favorite and most comfortable T’s…

I cannot believe I am (and I quote) “pushing 30.” Lord give me strength.

P.S. – my back is much better, so gym, here I come! (and for the record, I workout with my shirt on... stupid Bo-flex commercials...)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Growin' like a weed

Mauldin sure is growing... how do we know for sure?

He can actually wear "Newborn" clothes now; versus only wearing premie stuff! Our lil' man is still in premie diapers, however. Saturday, April 18th he will be officially four weeks old!

Here are some recent pictures of him. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

I deserve a gold star!

“Honey, can you take him?” whispered my wife, Laura, to me, as I lay in the bed, motionless, and donked-out! I was completely oblivious to any sound… all of a sudden I hear, vaguely, someone calling my name… I was away in dreamland… not sure what I was dreaming… but then I began to fall back into a state somewhere between asleep and awake..

“Eric? Eric…” continues Laura.

“aheummm???” I reply, half muffled, my face buried in the sheets and a warm, soft pillow. The bed was so warm.. I reach my arm out and the air in our room was bitterly cold compared to the temperature under the covers.

It is 3:00 A.M. and Laura has just finished nursing Mauldin and is ready to take on the slumber beast. I finally figure out what is going on and I immediately sit up.

“Can you take him?” she said. “Every time I try to swaddle him he breaks out in a fit and cries.”

At this point, in the wee hours of the morn, I really cannot function. As much as I would like to force a response to form; I can’t. I, in turn, nod yes with my eyes closed and arms outreached.

“Thank you, sweetheart.” Laura says in a loving whisper… and a kiss on my scruffy right cheek.

I start rocking as I take Mauldin, in my arms, and immediately put him over my right shouldler… I know if I do this if he has any burping to do then this is when he may do it. Sure enough, the little booger busts out a tiny, but for him, quite meaningful release. I continue to pound lightly on his lower back and alternate the love pats with an upward rubbing motion. I have no idea if this really does anything, but from all the other mom’s and dad’s I’ve watched in the past this tends to soothe the child in some shape or form. I take that he is slipping off into dreamland as I hear little squeaks emerge from out of nowhere!


It sounds sort of like a little puppy… adorable, I know. One day his squeak will disappear and only leave the crying and annoying wimpering… until that day I gladly accept that my son has a squeaker.

I leave him balanced on my shoulder while I take one of his cotton receiving blankets and lay it out on my side of the bed… I have learned from watching Laura, the best swaddler, ever, (sorry Charles) and take a corner and fold it down ever so gently. The amount of receiving blankets we own is staggering and it seems as if I am using a different one every day. Tonight this blanket is white with blue, red, and yellow polka dots… not my favorite one, but it was 3 AM and I was not going to the nursery and risk him waking up so I could have an aesthetically pleasing swaddle blanket that I know he will end up peeing on.

Mauldin, still on my shoulder, begins to snore, lightly, but still snoring, nonetheless. I know this because his face is turned towards my ear… I calmly bounce up and down as to keep him in motion… Mauldin, for some reason, loves to keep moving. “He likes to move it, move it!” LOL! I reach my right hand back and place it below his neck and with my left hand I place it firmly over his hips… I do this because this is where the positioned holds him when we place him in the cradle. The cradle we use is one that was passed down from my wife’s two sister’s… it originally belonged to out nephew, Drew, but he, of course, grew out of it, so next on the list was our niece, Annagrace, and now it’s Mauldin’s turn. I, certainly, do look forward to the day we can return the wooden wonder; however, it will be bitter sweet because it will mean our son is growing up… I am not sure we are ready for him to graduate to his crib just yet… I have become quite accustomed to our son’s late-night shenanigans.

I did finally get Mauldin swaddled good and comfy, and now comes the hard part… the part when I have to move him from my arms to the motionless cradle that sits on the otherside of the room. Our room doesn’t seem that large, but when you have a newborn who has just fallen asleep and not yet in the REM state walking across a room can be quite difficult. I am not sure why, but even a small creak from the wooden floor can cause his little eyes to pop wide open and I am back to square one.

I make it over to the cradle and sure enough the little beast awoke. I was not sure at first because the light in our room is so dimmed at this point and my eyes are so tired I was not sure what I was seeing. I look down at Mauldin, real close up, and notice his eyes are in a dead-lock with mine. It was as if he just wanted to say..

“Hey daddy!”

I kiss him on the forehead and follow up with a light “Shhhhh.”

I rock back and forth, front to back in a rocking horse motion and then switch it up to sway right to left… It is beyond me how he doesn’t get motion sickness from all my movement, but it seems to put him right at ease. The room has a chill in the air, a curious chill as if a ghost was standing next to me while I rocked our babe back to bed. I am curious as to how my body was retaining its heat! The my skin could feel the obvious cold, but why was I not shaking? Why wasn’t I… well, cold? Was I so tired I couldn’t distinguish the difference between hot and cold? Was my body so exhausted it had turned numb? Mauldin certainly wasn't cold... he was so wrapped up there was no way... besides he sweats when he sleeps. I know my feet were hot because my feet would stick to the floor if I was in one place too long while rocking. The sound of me pulling my foot up would make a deafening sound that I was sure would wake Mauldin. I decided to back up and stand on the rug that is placed under out bed…

I look over at the clock and it is now 3:28 AM. In my mind I talk to myself and decide…. “self, you are going to rock him for five more minutes and then put him down.” Then I rethink my stupidity… I look down at my son and his eyes are closed. How long had I been talking to myself in my mind? How long had I been going back and forth on what I would do? While I was striking a compromise with myself Mauldin had, again, fallen into the land of nod. Can I place him in the cradle and not awaken the savage beast? One, two… three… I place him down, tightly swaddled and not a peep… not a squeak… and eyes are still tightly shut. I take this as my confident cue to crawl away, slowly but fervently. I make it to my side of our bed and creep under the covers, which are now frightenly chilly. Now I feel cold? What is up with that?

Laura reaches over and her arm brushes across my chest and she rests her hand on my right shoulder… she says… “why are you so cold?”

“I am not sure…” I whisper “I was hot two seconds ago.”

Laura, pulls herself closer to my side… I can feel her playing footsy and then she runs her hand down my leg and rubs back and forth, on my thigh, trying to cause some skin on skin body heat to emerge.

“Thank you,” I say.

I am taken back to another time in our lives… but while my mind began to wander…

The beast emerged from his sleep… Laura grabs the monitor, from her bedside table, and clicks the top of it to see the real-time screen to check on what he was up to.

“He has busted out of his swaddle.” Laura said.

“Fine.” I reply while throwing back the covers and walk over to our restless babe. I reach over and put his little squirming arms back inside his blanket and rest my hand over his chest. “Shhhhhh….”

He quiets down almost immediately. I look over at the clock and it is almost 5 AM. Where has the time gone? I wondered.

I rush over back to my side of the bed and slide over to Laura hoping to return right back to where we left off…

“I re-swaddled the beast!” I quietly whispered in my wife’s ear.

“Laura…” I say again… she was asleep. I take a deep breath and roll over and reposition the pillow under my head… I look up at the clock… In it’s yellowish green light emanating from our armoire: 5:15 AM. I feel like I can’t win.. the clock just keeps on ticking… So, there I am… lying wide awake while my wife and son are sound asleep. Well, my only consolation was that I got Mauldin to sleep… I did not need help from anyone… I did it myself. I think that is pretty cool – and certainly worth a gold star… or a cookie!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

This is How I Roll

Mauldin at 2 weeks old rolled over on his own!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Let me just say...

When I first heard of this stuff I was like... "What's Grape water?"

Now that I am educated on the helpfulness of this beautifully made liquid gold... Let me just say...

Thank God for this stuff!

Thank you, God.

Oh, and the makers of Gripe Water...

If you don't know... this stuff stops stomach aches, hiccups, colic, crying... well... crying from the aforementioned baby issues... It's a miracle.. especially at 1AM!

It truly keeps me from griping so much!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

My son, the night owl!

We are never really certain what nights we will be able to catch our ZZZzzzz’s lately. Our newborn son, Mauldin, loves to keep his new mommy and daddy on their toes. Although, only being a week old I am more than sure he doesn’t understand what “sleep” time is; considering he sleeps 90% of the day. How can he actually determine when he should be sleeping and when it is optional? So, I guess I can cut the lil’ guy some slack. Talk to me again about this in six months.

“I think Megan will be voted off tonight,” I said while sitting on the couch next to Laura. “She is really cute, but I just can’t get past the tattoos!”

It is Wednesday night, and nothing we really watch is on TV, so we watch whatever is available. This season we have caught maybe two episodes of the Fox reality talent show, American Idol. I pretty much loathe the show, but we still catch the occasional episode to stay up on the pop culture phenom that has spread across the nation.

Carol, my mother-in-law, is sitting, comfortably, rocking Mauldin, in the wooden rocking chair that was my grandmothers while my wife, Laura, and I sit, side by side, on our laptops, lounging between the pillows, on the couch behind her. We sometimes enjoy our laptop time right before bedtime, in the bed, or just sitting around in the kitchen, but most of the time it is on the couch in front of the television. I had just finished my late-night cup of decaf coffee and bowl of cheeszits. This used to be a normal night for Laura and I, minus the mother-in-law, but we have not had time lately; mainly because Mauldin really likes to monopolize our time! How dare he, I know.

“There,” said Laura. “I just got finished uploading pictures to facebook for the first time since we got home from the hospital.”

Ever since we have gotten home, a week ago, we have taken probably 150 pictures… so if you really think about it is about 21 pictures a day… give or take. I am not counting the ones we’ve deleted! I mean can you blame us? Obviously, we are a little fanatical about our first born.

We usually head up to bed around 10PM. I hop off the couch and make my way over to Laura’s mom to scoop up the little man. This sometimes comes with some form of protest because Mauldin is such an addiction that anyone who holds him becomes entranced in his aura. It is like his baby pheromones, he gives off, trap anyone who has embraced him.

“Alrighty, Mauldin, it’s time to go upstairs,” I say with a fervent voice… I always plan for a whining and “awwwhhh” to follow after I spout the words from my lips. He looks so comfortable and cozy. The little man is in his little onesie that dawns a baby blue elephant, on the front, with the words, “lil’ peanut” embroidered under it. Mauldin squeaks a little as I slide my right hand under his warm head and my left under his itty bitty booty.

“All-right little man, it’s time for your late-night din-din!” I exclaim.

I always try to wake him up before he eats… otherwise he will just lie in Laura’s arms, his face against her bosom, totally zonked out. Now please understand… our child sleeps probably 18-20 hours out of the 24 hour day our Earth is known for! I asked our pediatrician how long this will go on for and she winced at the very utterance of my query.

“Usually babies continue on this type of sleep pattern for about..” she said while pursing her lips and pausing to look through his manila office folder. “About three-four months,” she finished.

“Please wake him up…” says Laura. “It is so hard to feed a sleeping babe.”

“I’ll do my best!” I replied.

One certain way that I know can wake up our child is to take him and place him on the changing table… Our child, for some reason, hates to have his diaper changed. I have a theory, as to why he does not enjoy the changing of the diaper. My hypothesis is that he is brought back to a time when he was strapped down and a cold clamp chopped off a bit of his… well, you know what I mean. That certainly would make me rethink some things! So, lately he has been a little more docile when we have gone to clean up the mess that was left on the underside of his buttocks. Maybe he has placed the memory of the circumcision waaay back in the black hole of his baby psyche.

“Mauldin, comon’ lil man, lets wake up so we catch have some of mommy’s yummy lactation!” I said.

“Eric… that would not make me wanna wake up…” said Laura while positioning herself on the bed with a brown boppy by her side.

“Well, what else should I do?” I reply with a raised eyebrow.

“I don’t know! Be creative!” replied Laura.

Thankfully, he awoke from his slumber, still a little groggy, but a form of consciousness! This time is the perfect window to introduce the “milk” to him. However, after about 10 minutes of feeding Mauldin tends to start slipping into his milk coma. Although, this night was not one of those nights. The more Mauldin eats, from his “breast” friend, he more he is roused to an awakened state.

“No, this is a little bad…” I said… “Why is he so awake? It is almost 11:30 PM! He needs to start winding down again… for his bed time!”

“I don’t know…” said Laura. “Maybe he slept too much today! Maybe he has to poop, maybe he has gas… maybe he…”

“He what? He wants to stare at the fan more?” I said in a confused and perplexed voice.

That is just what the little guy did… he laid in my arms and kicked and squirmed and would not stay still… then I heard the beautiful sound that I had been waiting for… *burrrp!* He burped! He usually does this about 3-5 times before he winds down for sleepy time and the sandman isn’t far behind. But, this night the sandman must of taken a vacation. Mauldin laid on the bed wide-eyed and awake. It is now 12AM and my wife is lying by my side asleep. I know this little guy is not going to give in anytime soon and I have to get up at 6:30 AM to get ready for work! I did the thing I really didn’t want to do… I gave in… I got up from the warm bed and made my way into the guest room where my mother-in-law was sleeping soundly. Or, for all I know, was lying awake just waiting for a little knock-knock on the door. Mauldin’s crying was so sporadic it was hard to tell if he was upset or just irritated that we were trying to make him go to bed.

Maybe he is just a night owl and wondering when he will be able to stay up and watch that colorful screen that his parents watch on a daily basis. What if he is just testing us to see how much power he has… “Maybe I can change the entire time-clock in this house! Mwhahahahaha!” –thinks Mauldin.

All-in-all I felt really bad giving up my son, to someone else, to Carol, my mother-in-law, to soothe to sleep… I am his father! Why can’t I do it? I am thankful to have had my mother and my mother-in-law the past two weeks, but, I, honestly, almost cried about it because after Friday Laura and I are on our own. What if this happens every night? I was hoping I would be a better father… A father who could soothe the savage beast inside my son. How could it be that our son would be put in the statistics book of the amount of children who grasp hold of their parent’s night and choke them to death until they are reduced to a walking Inferi, a zombie-like corpse that is dead to the world yet still sits behind a desk during the day…

It would be that as soon as I ditched my pride, for my sleep, he quieted down almost immediately. Well, I guess this parenting thing is about compromise and right now my sleep is being highly compromised. Well, let’s hope and pray by… counting in my head the months… June… he will be a little more adapt to our sleep schedule. I anticipate we will successful and can blend our son into the normal society sleep program. If not… I may need therapy, or a long nap!