Sunday, April 30, 2006

You Need a Tutu!

Saturday Morning
If you click on the images you can see Merry, David, Maxwell and Jackson. I am the guy in the tan pants. My father is in the shade over by the fence.

Sunday Morning, admiring Saturdays work.

At work on Sunday. I painted to the bottom of the window before I called it quits.

Please, Please, Please buy some tutus! I hate to beg, but this painting thing is tough. I need to move a lot of tutus so I can pay a pro. I got started painting early Saturday morning and put in a solid 9 hours. My Dad came over and helped for a couple of hours and I finished the entire front.

Here is the thing, I am using an oil based stain and painting with this stuff is like painting with Elmers glue. It is thick and does not go on easily. Heidi's Dad came over Friday night, checked the stain out and declared "You have to thin this stuff out."

I bought cheap paint brushes on the way home from work on Friday night and they failed the test. By the end of work Saturday night they were both junk. The weight and consistency of the stain turned them into mini , hand held mops. Kind of hard to paint in the corners with mini mops.

Saturday night we hosted a cocktail party that kicked ass. The party was in honor of our friends who are packing up and heading west, to the Seattle area. For the blogs sake, lets call them Sarah and Bill, they have a son, almost exactly Merry's age, we met them at birthing class. Sarah and Heidi became great friends and Sarah got Heidi involved in her play group. Anyway, Bill works for Groove, a company founded by the guy who invented Lotus Notes. I think Groove got bought by Microsoft and Bill is going to work there. We had six or seven couples here and I partied like a rock star. I hope the guests had as much fun as I did.

Sunday morning was payback for the sins of Saturday night. I haven't felt that lousy in a while. I got up and took the boys with me to go get Grampy's convertible out of storage. David, Thomas and I then hung out at Grampy's for a few hours. We opened the pool, drove the plastic kid Jeep and played with the garden train. It was a beautiful day and being outside helped to clear the cobwebs.

After lunch, Merry, David and I went to the neighborhood super, duper open twenty-four hours and Sunday hardware store. We needed some high quality, expensive paint brushes for the afternoons endeavor. Back on the ladder for three more hours. Did I mention that painting is tough. We need to sell some tutus so I can hire a painter.

Tonight we will eat some Thai take out and its back to the daily grind tomorrow. Will probably get to paint an hour or so every night if the weather is good. Should be done painting the house by August.

Friday, April 28, 2006


Thank Goodness it's Friday, I am really looking forward to the weekend. What is on tap you may ask? Whether you ask or not I am going to tell you.

D.R. Ross and Son, Painting and Decorating spent the better half of this week stripping the paint off of The Old Blue House. She is naked, the clapboards are bare. It is my job to cover them up. I have never painted a house and am kind of excited about the challenge. I am going to try to get Heidi to post some before, during and after shots.

Saturday night we are hosting a cocktail party for Heidi and Merry's playdate group. We have been with this group of folks for four years now and we always have a good time when we get together. What is best is that children are not coming, it will be a gathering of adults, fancy that!

Sunday will be spent painting I am sure. I am also sure that the excitement of painting will be gone. The weather is supposed to be nice, lets hope I can make good progress.

Have a nice weekend!

Thursday, April 27, 2006

A Shift

David no longer cries for Dadda when things go wrong. This bum's me out, I really got a kick out of him coming to me when he needed a hug. It has shifted back to Mommy, Heidi loves that he wants her, but with two other children vying for her undivided attention I think she was OK with David turning to me.

The week David and I spent together while Mom, Merry and Thomas were in Atlanta created a bond. That bond is still present, yet with my return to work it is loosing strength. After two weeks together David looked too me to help solve his problems, now he is turning back to Mom. Can't say I blame him, she is there and I am in an office.

Seeing this shift makes me feel sad. What I want is to be there for my children, if they have a problem, I want to be there to help them solve it. This is an interesting dilemma that makes me feel a little whiny. I want to stay home, I want to go to work, why me ohh why me?

The thing is, if I really wanted to stay home and take care of the kids, Heidi could get a job and I could. I don't want that really, I love my job. I like getting up and going to work and don't want to give it up, even if it means when David scrapes his knee he calls his Mom instead of me.

I have learned, and will hopefully implement, that spending time with the children independently from the other children is very important. I think I need to plan a weekend away with Merry. Soon, Thomas will be big enough for Heidi to escape with either David or Merry. An adventure with a parent, what could be better?

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The Cinderella Ball

Do you know what makes a four year old girl so excited that the mere mention of it sets her off into a stuttering explanation of what she believes will be the BEST day of her entire life?

The Cinderella Ball, is the creation of Merry's dancing school and is being held to raise funds for some charity, I do not know which. The deal is the little girls get all dressed up and go to the dance with their fathers. If not Dad, then another appropriate escort.

Meredith has a day of beauty scheduled, there will be hair, feet and fingers attended too. Daddy needs to get a Tuxedo and has secured Grampy's convertible as our coach. Merry is so kind, sweet and beautiful that she could not be mistaken as an evil step sister. The attention being lavished on her reminds me of an evil step sister.

Merry and I have been practicing our dancing and plan on being the most graceful there. We will probably get a routine put together that will rival any seen on Dancing with the Stars. My only concern is that at the end of the evening a glass slipper is going to be fitted to each of the little Cinderella's feet to determine which is genuine. This does not sound like a good idea, all of the princesses there are the real Cinderella and God Forbid if the slipper does not fit.

The Ball is to be held next weekend, May 6, to be exact. I will provide you all with a complete recap after the extravaganza.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Thomas is cruising, he sees what he wants and he has the ability to go and get it. It has to be liberating to finally be able to go and get what you want. He also has the uncanny ability to find any piece of lint, construction paper, price tag, or little piece of plastic that held the price tag. Upon discovery he attempts to eat it, what ever it is.

Thomas has not yet choked but the finger swipe to his mouth gets employed five or six times a day. His attractive nuisance is the Chinese apothecary, this piece of furniture has about 50 drawers, none of them containing anything of great significance. It beats David's stack of firewood by a long shot. No splinters or heavy logs to topple on top of him, just small, light drawers that leave hardly a mark.

There is a six inch step that leads into our kitchen and Thomas has taken it on. This is a right of passage for our kids, learning to navigate this step means mommy cannot get away. It is dangerous for a ten month old however and his resolve will be tried. Last night was his first attempt and like Merry and David before him, he landed on his face. No marks or anything just a dull thud. A quick pat and a kiss and he was on his way. Going up is much easier and was accomplished quickly. Navigating this step will be a large part of Thomas' life over the next couple of days. His victories will be celebrated and when he falls he will be consoled, his confidence will soar and soon he will have to learn about the stairs.

Monday, April 24, 2006

The Stroller

Heidi found the most awesomest stroller on the planet. She had to look all the way to Australia to find it, and it was worth it. It is a jogger stroller for two that when in a pinch can carry three. It is only one stroller wide so you can bring it indoors and it will fit through doors. This thing cost $500.00 and was worth every penny. We brought it to the park the other day and here are the pictures. The brand is Phil and Ted, didn't they go on an excellent adventure? If they did they should have brought this stroller. You can push it with one hand and the front wheel locks in case you want to run with it.

This is Heidi:
It is actually a single jogger stroller that you can buy an attachment for to make it a double. So, I would have to reccommend it to every first time mother who thinks they may have another child at some point. It is a little more expensive than a lot of the other single joggers, but none of the others can convert to a double. Therefore, you will find yourself having to have to buy another jogger made for two if you do not buy this one. In the long run this stroller will end up saving you money if you have a second child! Being a parent of 3, buying this stroller is the best advice I can give to a first time mother.

We have made it work to fit all three of our children. The second picture is with our oldest sitting on the wheel. She can pull this off for very short trips, after that her but starts to hurt and then insists that the baby must go in the basket, in between our sons legs so she can get the front seat.

The only thing I would change is the hood. I wish it was bigger and covered more of the body for sun protection, and if I was an engineer I would find a way to make this a legal 3 seater.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

What Time of Day am I?

You Are Sunrise

You enjoy living a slow, fulfilling life. You enjoy living every moment, no matter how ordinary.
You are a person of reflection and meditation. You start and end every day by looking inward.
Caring and giving, you enjoy making people happy. You're often cooking for friends or buying them gifts.
All in all, you know how to love life for what it is - not for how it should be.

Another one Down

I have broken another child's spirit. Thomas has been defeated, we all knew it would happen the only question was when. Last night Thomas stirred, I went in laid him down, patted his back and left. Thomas went back to sleep.

I remember going through the process with Merry, it was intimidating, there were all sorts of feelings invovled. Was I damaging her by denying her? At the time, less than one year into the most unbelievable journey I could ever imagine, I didn't know. All I knew was that I loved her and needed/wanted to be there for her. To let her cry for forty minutes without hugging and rocking her seemed barbaric.

I was not as calloused then as I am now. I didn't realize that the sooner the child figures it out, the better it is for everyone, some lessons are harder to learn than others. Two or three nights of denial for the future possibility of a good nights sleep is a no brainer. I say possibility because with three kids the prospect of a good nights sleep is never more than a possibility.

Friday, April 21, 2006

A Little Something

Not really feeling it today, so I figured I would just do an update on my "Two Step With Thomas". We danced last night for fifteen minutes, he only made it through 2 cycles which was nice. The problem was he woke up again about a half hour later and lasted about five minutes. David, Thomas' roommate did not sleep that well and overall I spent about an hour, 3-4 am, tending to little ones.

Heidi downloaded over 270 pictures to her shutterfly account yesterday. This is a common occurrence for Heidi, she took those pictures Easter Sunday, 270 pictures in one day, it boggles my mind. I am going to try to get her to post her favorites, either here or there.

That is it for now, maybe more later.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Too Soon to Tell

Too soon to tell whether or not Thomas and I have come to an understanding regarding his midnight feedings, he however did not make a peep last night which was appreciated greatly by his parents.

Heidi is recovering from twenty-four hours of violent weight loss. She dropped about ten pounds in that time and her energy is slowly returning. Myself, between "training" Thomas, answering the alarm clock every morning at 5:30am and playing single dad during moms incapacitation, a full nights sleep was great.

Here is how Thomas and I are working out the new rules. I am sure I stole this from somewhere, I am not sure to whom the credit belongs, so here it goes anyway. Thomas cries out for Mommy, it usually starts slowly and builds, I try to get in early. I do not speak, I lie him back down and pat his back for thirty seconds or so. Then I stop and sit, I don't look at him or acknowledge him. After five minutes, I lie him back down, pat his back for thirty seconds, then sit. Repeat until he gives up.

The first night we were interrupted because Mom felt bad, he had been sick and she wanted to comfort him. He got fed and it still took over an hour for him to settle down.

The second night Mom was too sick to care what was happening and it took approximately forty minutes for him to give up.

Last night, NOTHING, not a peep, I went to sleep at ten and woke for the first time at 5:30, it was wonderful, I feel like a new man, a body refreshed. I realize, having gone through this before, that last night may have been a fluke and Thomas and I will probably have to go a few more rounds, but he can not beat me, I will not be vanquished.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Get Well Soon! Please!

Mom is sick, and when I say sick I mean sick. David's debillitating illness from last week has claimed another victim. The leader of the pack is down and we are scrambling. Nothing can shake a dad up like the unexpected absence of mom.

There are three little kids completely dependant on her and she is down for the count. It is spring time in the bug business and I have to be at the office. What is a family to do? How does your family handle this kind of tragedy/dilema?

Here is how I am handling it, MOMMY!, I have reached out to my mom and she has come to the rescue. What would I do without such supportive parents and family? I think about all the parents out there doing it alone and shake my head.

We went to Poppa and Nanny's house for supper last night and I dropped the three of them off there this morning. The kids love it, they think it is some kind of vacation, there are not so many rules in their Grandparents house and the kids really appreciate that.

Hopefully, Heidi will get well soon, not only because she feels like crap cooled down, but because we really need her.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Once Upon a Time

Once upon a time there was a kingdom ruled by a benevolent and beautiful Queen. This Queen provided for and looked after her subjects, she was loved and respected, her subjects wrote songs and composed odes to her generosity.

The Queen had one very dependent, loving subject to whom she would sacrifice her entire kingdom. The Queens advisors made it clear to her that although she loved this person very much she needed to separate herself from him and allow herself to sleep through the night. You see, this subject had the awful habit of waking the Queen every night and demanding to be fed.

The unenviable task of breaking this news to the needy subject was given to me and I have accepted. To accomplish this I am going to need the support of the entire kingdom, the young man in question is not easily deterred and can raise an ear shattering protest when he does not get his way.

Last night was the first confrontation, fifteen minutes into our joust, the Queen, feeling sad for her beloved subject, began speaking loud enough for him to hear her. This only confirmed his resolve and the wailing and crying continued. The Queen loving her subject so, got down from her thrown and opened the gates. She fed the unhappy soul and sent him on his way, he was not happy that he had met so much resistance and been summarily dismissed. He continued to beg and plead for her attention until finally an hour after it had begun he fell back to sleep.

Needless to say as the "Gate Keeper" I felt as though my authority had been usurped. I appreciate the love and care the Queen shows her subjects, I simply, respectfully request that in the future, if she asks me to serve her, she allows me to carry out her wishes.

We have turned them back before and we will again, the little buzzards can not beat us when we stand united.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Hello World!

I have to say Thanks to The Mighty Daring Young Mom, my Statcounter is whistling with the traffic coming over from your mention. I would also like to thank freezio for sucking me into the meme, I am still not sure what meme means, but I like it.

Now I am feeling the pressure, I want you to like me or at least think of me when you need a Tutu. Heidi and I started down the path of internet commerce with our third pregnancy, another little bundle of joy to clothe, feed, diaper, and educate. We were also in the midst of some renovation to our Old Blue House.

Heidi and I have three children, the oldest is Merry, she is four and is the inspiration for The Tutu Boutique, right on her heels is David, at two and a half he is my oldest son. Next is the baby, Thomas is growing like a weed and at 9 months he could easily pass as 11 months. The cast of characters around here is capped off with the two dogs, Maxwell and Jackson. Jackson is close to nine years old and blind as a bat. Maxwell is seven and fit as a fiddle. These are two wonderful golden retrievers who enjoyed a much higher status around our house before Merry's arrival.

I write about our family and what is happening in our lives. Being the father of three children I have learned a few tricks, and I pass them on when they come up. I also make note of how my perspective has changed from one child to three. Being a Dad is an awesome responsibility that is only trumped by being a Mom. I hope some of the DYM's traffic sticks and you come back and check in on me and my family again and again.

Friday, April 14, 2006

A First

I have been tagged by freezio over at Turn Into Stone for a 'meme' this has never happened to me before and to tell you the truth it as given me a little anxiety. The subject is not a problem, list six strange things / facts / habits about yourself. Not the most fun but do-able. My problem is whether or not anybody I tag with this will go through with it.

Here we go:
1) I am not afraid and often do, wear the same pair of underpants for consecutive days

2) I have a touch of O.C.D. things that set me off are: a) Not placing the cap back on the tooth paste when you are done brushing your teeth. b) Leaving the toilet seat cover up when your are done. c) Not putting away the vacuum cleaner within a very short time of finishing with it. d) Leaving any drawers or cupboards open when you are not looking for something in them. There are a whole bunch more that if you asked my wife she could readily recite. I didn't think this was strange but upon further review I guess it might be.

3) Reality television shows make me cry, especially Extreme Home Makeover. I try not to watch it.

4) I sell Tutus on the Internet

5) I snap my toes, like snapping your fingers before I fall asleep at night.

6) When I get excited about a conversation or a point I want to make in that conversation I forget to breath and will talk until I am gasping for breath.

Here are the folks that I am going to tag, some of them are big wigs and may not go for it, but here it is anyway.

Dad Gone Mad
Daring Young Mom
The Big Dubya
Where Boys Fear to Tread
It's Not All Mary Poppins
Cheeky's Hideaway

Thursday, April 13, 2006

My Boys

Heidi is home today with two very uncomfortable boys. Thomas with a case of the loose and runny's and David with a mild fever. I spoke to her a bit ago and in the background was a cacophony of wails and moans. She put David on the phone and in between sobs and cries he managed to get out the words "Dadda come home", why doesn't the kid just reach through the phone and grab me by the balls?

Today I can't run home so he is going to have to suffer, along with his mother and brother. Heidi has reported that the boys sleep more when they are sick which has provided her with some time to get a few things done around the house. When they are awake it is an entirely different story, these boys need hugs and cuddles to get them through the pain.

I kind of like the hugs and cuddles, when David is feeling bad he becomes an entirely different child. Sitting still, lavishing affection, these are not behaviors David generally exhibits, unless the poor boy is ill. When he is sick all he wants is to sit with someone who loves him and cuddle, it is very nice to be the recipient of this affection, even at the expense of the sick little soul.

When the children are sick, their dependence on their parents shines through. They never really give you a chance to forget that they need you, but when they are sick they really need you! In a strange way it kind of makes me feel good, what is the matter with me?

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


My poor boy David has been stricken with a mighty case of the pukes. Heidi called me around 4:30 yesterday afternoon to let me know the front door was locked and that she was in the shower because David had puked all over her. Thomas also had a little case of something similar but different. Thomas had more snots and less vomits.

Back to David, I got home and sat down with him, the poor child was pale as a ghost and retching every 15 minutes or so. There was nothing left in his stomach, by 8:00 the little trooper was so spent he could not keep his head up, he finally drifted off to sleep.

Thomas, not feeling well was down by 7:30 and not heard from again, my plan is working perfectly. Merry, feeling a little left out, did her best to drive her mother crazy, she did not succeed, but did add a nice little twist into a rather difficult evening.

Heidi and Merry had a busy morning planned, hoping David would wake up feeling better I went to work. At 7:45am my phone rings, it is Heidi, there is no way that David is going to be able to tag along for their appointed rounds. Heidi and I may have slept through the night but David had been busy, he and his crib were soaked. He was still pale and retching. The pedialyte was not staying down and I needed to come home.

Working in the family business I am lucky that I can go home. There were no pending emergencies and my brother Fred was in the office, so home I went. When I arrived the entire family was upstairs, Heidi sitting in our bed with a very pale, tired looking little boy. He smiled when he saw me and I took Heidi's place on the bed. David cuddled up and watched TV, two minutes after Heidi left out of nowhere a big gush of pedialyte exits from his stomach. I was ready and caught most of it.

Over the next couple of hours David managed to keep down a bottle of "juice" and drift off to sleep. When Merry and Heidi returned he woke up with a little color in his cheeks, like maybe he was coming through it. I returned to work.

I hope he feels better soon, because I love him and I don't like to see him so uncomfortable.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The Little Guy

Thomas, my youngest son, has learned to crawl, seems as though it has been a big week for crawling in the blogosphere. Along with crawling he is also experiencing quite a tooth explosion, his new nickname is Snagle Tooth, since they all seem to be coming in crooked.

When I think of crawling the first thing that comes to my mind is the word
No! The beginning of the end for the little fella's sense of exploration. The easiest part of parenting is over, the time between when they can sit up on their own and when they become ambulatory. As a parent sitting is also over, the countless reminders not to mess with this, that or the other thing has begun.

With David, when he started to move, there was a deep fascination with the stack of wood waiting for the fireplace. If I had a nickel for the number of times I got up off the couch to remind David to not play with the firewood I would not be selling tutus, ballet slippers, leotards and dress up clothes on the Internet. David understands the word "no" his understanding started when he learned to crawl. He doesn't always stop what he is doing but he does understand.

We have yet to discover what object in the house Thomas will be drawn to, I can only hope that it is safer than a stack of firewood.

With the teeth coming through the drool is flowing, gobs and gobs of baby drool. Baby drool is far less offensive than spit up, it is however a nuisance. Every time he is picked up he leaves a large wet spot on your shoulder. It dries clear and has no odor, which is good because his shirt is soaked to his belly button minutes after it is put on.

Luckily his sleep has not yet been radically affected by his new teeth. The little guy is good for one wake up a night, usually around 4 am, Heidi gives him a little snack and he goes back to sleep. There has been a development, Thomas had a routine check up yesterday and he is growing up big and strong, he is right on track.

The problem is, the "Doctor" informed Heidi that she should no longer feed him in the middle of the night. This is not a problem for Heidi, it will not affect David or Merry, it will prove to be a bit of a pain for me. I have a plan and expect to have the child sleeping through the night within three days. We shall see. Wish me luck.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Thank You Atlanta!

Heidi and Merry returned from Atlanta with a terrific method of getting the toys picked up. Turns out there is a "Toy Fairy", in all of my thirty-six years I had never heard of the "Toy Fairy" until our reunion in Ft. Meyers.

The Toy Fairy wanders the planet looking for toys that are left out overnight, when the Toy Fairy finds these toys he/she redistributes them to little boys and girls who are not lucky enough to have such wonderful toys and who, when they do get their hands on such a prize, make sure to take good care of them and put them away when they are done playing.

I don't know how long children will believe in the Toy Fairy, but I suspect that it should have some legs. They need to believe in the Tooth Fairy until their teeth fall out. I know they buy into the Bunny with the eggs for quite some time. I still believe in the biggest Fairy of all, Old Saint Nick. Those folks down in Atlanta have given me a gift and I am thankful for it.

Long Live The Toy Fairy!


A Little Game

I invented a new game. This game is awesome, every parent with small children should learn how to play. The name of my new game:

Yes, Daddy!

When the parent asks the child to perform a task, the child answers "Yes, Daddy!" and receives 5 points. If the child actually performs the required task said child receives 5 more points.

If the child replies "But Daddy, first I have to sit here and color Mom's white chair" Minus 5 points, the correct answer is "Yes, Daddy!"

When the four year old catches on the two year old, as always, follows close behind. This game is infectious. Because they are little you don't really need to keep score and can add and subtract points at your own discretion.

This new game has held up for three or four days now, I am sure they will catch on soon, until then, "Yes, Daddy!" is where it is at.

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I was caught off guard by the emotion I felt when I first saw Merry, Thomas and Heidi at the Fort Meyers airport. Thomas looked so big, how could a kid grow so much in seven days? It looked as though he had put on 15 lbs. Merry's hair had grown, she looked older and Heidi was more beautiful than ever.

David was so excited to see his sister and Momma, big hugs and kisses were had all around. Merry, when she saw me, came running and jumped into my arms, I almost cried. Nanna was there to pick us up with a mini van that was perfect. The vacation was on, the weather was beautiful and we had nothing but time to enjoy it. We started that afternoon, swimming in Nanna's lagoon of a swimming pool. We beached it every morning and swam in the pool every afternoon, with three adults watching three children the parental obligations were manageable. Heidi and I got to go out to dinner a few times. It was a terrific vacation for a family with three children, aged 4 and under.

Thank you Nanna for such a wonderful time, your hospitality and help with the kids was great. Everyday I count my lucky stars for the tremendous family Heidi and I have been blessed with. Your patience and help with the kids over the last week made for a very relaxing, worry free week of Florida living for a family from the cold North East. I can't wait until next year!

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