Oorlog Van Gezichtsuitdrukkingen

Today was a nice day.  I took some good photos to share with you lot.  You aren’t paying attention are you?  You’re trying to figure out just what exactly is going on with the title of the post.  Well, it is accurate.  And it is a real language, even though some would say it sounds made up.  Go go inspector gadget and utilize the power of the intertubes if you must know.
 
Now, I got some great photos of the Princess and Danielle enjoying some facial expressions time.  The following set of photos represent roughly two minutes of real time.  And, yes, there may have been some pooping involved.  But, you’ll have to guess by who and when.  This is most of them, though the entire sequence is in the photo gallery at the bottom of the page.
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Feature Presentation

You’ve heard about it.  You’ve talked about it.  The one you want: Coming Home
 
I thought about paying some clowns and hobos to populate a theater and inviting everyone out so it seemed like a grand affair, but the numbers didn’t allow for it.  I once participated in the writing of a scene about a clown, hobo, bartender and postal worker involved in an hilarious accidental death.  It turned into a PSA about the horrors of wantonly discarded banana peels.  I mention this for no particular reason, other than that first sentence charged a few neurons in my brain that brought back a nice memory.  I’ve got a soft spot for clowns and hobos.  I’ll not apologize for it.  Instead, you get this post.  It’s nice, but I’d pass and wait to see the other grand prize package.
 
Anyways, I did think about what ought to be said on such a momentous occassion.  Bringing Claire to the Royal Cottage for the first time was an enormous day in all our lives, shared with family on both sides.  But, honestly, our happiest memory was that night when Claire slept peacefully all night allowing all of us an opportunity to sleep.  There are, however, a couple moments worth sharing. 
 
I headed over to the hospital in the AM to meet my parents, Danielle and the baby to prepare for check out.  It was something like a hundred degrees with hundred percent humidity.  Everyone was more or less ready to leave when I arrived.  One of the things they don’t teach you in baby class is how to work a car seat.  There are inserts and buckles and straps and clips.  Neither of us really knew what we were doing.  The awkward moment came when we actually had to pass an inspection of the baby’s safe status in the car seat before the hospital would let us leave.  We failed, initially, and were properly instructed.  And so we thwarted catastrophe.  I wasn’t kidding when I said we were thrilled to make seven days accident free.
 
Once home (did I mention we live in a fourth floor walk up?) we had to get everyone upstairs.  No one was happy that it was a hundred degrees out.  Particularly Danielle.  On account of having just had a baby, the stairs were daunting.  Up safely, we had to introduce the baby to the dogs, and reintroduce my parents and Danielle.  The dogs, having been largely alone for a week, acted like tweakers with a ten spot seeing their dealer for the first time in a week.  It was interesting, as the Chinese like to say.  The dogs finally calmed down this last Thursday.
 
My parents helped us get settled in, played with the baby for a bit, manhandled the dogs and, most importantly, provided some home cooked food for the next couple days.  They left, and Danielle’s mother and sister arrived.  It was a very busy day.  Danielle’s mom set about making dinner for everyone while Michelle played with the baby.  There may have been some monopolizing of the baby’s time.  But, that’s what aunt’s are for: spoiling the baby.  Did I mention Danielle’s mom cooked some delicious dinner? 
 
We also had the first Skype customer.  Michelle and the baby spent most of an hour chatting on the Skype with Pam.  It went pretty well.  Our dogs also chatted with Pam’s dogs.  The internets have changed everything.  Pets corresponding across state lines through the speaking and looking tubes of the internets.  Whoulda thought?  
 
After dinner it was just Danielle, Claire and myself.  Our first moment as a family in our house.  Which was terrifying.  I mean, whose idea was it to put me in charge of another human’s life?  I remember the first night in the hospital after Claire was born.  I was wheeling her cart to the nursery and she started to spit up.  Lying on her back, she also started to choke.  My first instinct was something like, geewillickers, that baby needs help.  A quarter second later, it occurred to me that I was not just the nearest legal guardian of this child, I was Lord Protecter.  I never had doubts about being a father.  In fact, I was excited by the idea and continue to be a thrilled and proud parent of a baby who prefers watching shadows on the wall almost as much as she prefers looking at her dad. 
 
But, that moment in the hall was an entry into an entirely new universe.  A universe based solely upon the founding principle that I am now the lone member of the Princess’ Royal Guard and anyone and everything is suspect.  Lord Protecter, Constable-Sergeant or Captain of the Guard.  However you want to call it.  I haven’t quite figured out who is Richlieu yet.  Nor have I yet cast an Athos, Porthos or Aramis.  It’s a good job, if occassionally nervewracking.  But, it’s got a great benefits package.
 
That said, here’s some pictures.  Which are more interesting than my nonsense.  The whole set is down at the bottom of the page scrolling, at the moment.
 

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

Lazing About: Or The Art of Product Placement

At 4ish in the AM I was looking at some photos and considering what might be worthy of posting.  Whilst doing so, I noticed that the best picture of young Claire, aside from the rock on photo, should double as an advertisement for Samsung.  Buy Samsung: Life Never Felt So Real.  Or, Samsung: Your Window to Real Life.  I mean it’s a great picture.  Of course, I took the picture with a Sony Camera.  So, I guess that’s a non-starter.
 
Anyway, we have been lazing about a lot with the baby.  Aside from the important posts that I just can’t muster the focus to do correctly, we haven’t really had anything eventful happen.  You know, even today, while the plumber was fixing the faucet that exploded and we left young Claire with her first babysitter ever for about twenty minutes, it was really just a lot of lazing around.  Getting the members of the family used to each other and such.  Ranting at the news.  Playing with the dogs.  You know, business as usual.  Eating chicken.  That sort of thing.  In honor, some more photos of such life…
 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Been How Long?

Adoring subjects of the Princess, it’s nice to you know all of you are appreciating the blog.  The best way to express this satisfaction is of course to email multiple accounts and tattle to my wife about the startling low rate at which posts are appearing.  If possible, also include suggestions along the lines of how so-and-so-does-such-and-such-which-is-really-great-but-you-know-whatever-you-can-do.  I know, "but, King Regent of the Galaxy, this doesn’t sound like satisfaction at all!"  I’ll say it once, I like my coffee black and my complaints marauding as compliments.  Those of you already performing accordingly, and you know who you are, well done and thank you.  It warms the cockles it does.
 
And, I won’t lie.  I could say I’ve slept less this week than last and been burning the candle at both ends.  Which would be true.  But, mostly I’ve been lazing about with the Princess.
 

We have had a pretty eventful week though.  There have been doctor’s appointments, car rides, guests, bath times and diapers.  Oh the diapers.  Great times.

In terms of business at hand, I’ve a few posts planned to cover some of these events as well as the coming home pictures, which really should have been done sooner.  But, you know, kid business and such.  Honestly, I suppose I should be better about all this.  I consider it my primary fatherly duty at the moment.  Sure, I help with all the day to day stuff, but this is what I’ve decided my main role is at this point.  Chronicler of the Life of the Princess.  And I imagine it will continue to be so until my services as a ninja assassin are required.  Whether that be doing battle with the ornery denizens of the galaxy lurking on the dark side of the bed or murdering the wouldbe suitors of the Princess.  Otherwise, I’m playing it by ear. 

Unfortunately, in terms of my responsibilities here, it seems that my own personal timescale has suffered some fashion of catastrophic melt down that has left it spinning wildly out of control faster and faster.  At its current rate, I anticipate that by next Thursday at 4ish in the PM I’ll be 55 and welcoming my daughter’s daughter into the world.  On the plus side, no midlife crisis.  On the downside, nearly thirty years in less than a fortnight can’t be good for the digestion.  I wonder if one should stretch for such a thing.

Seriously, it’s been how long?

Legends of the Rocking Gods

After Claire was born, Danielle and the baby spent four days in a post-delivery pseudo-hotel room at the hospital.  In this particular wing, there are many rooms but only two rocking chairs.  This seems dumb to me.  But, you know, health care these days.  I bet they don’t have any in Slovenia.  Anyway. 
 
You have to fight, fight for your right to a rocking chair.  Unbeknownst to me at the time, my dad went out, tracked down a rocking chair and liberated it on behalf of room 167.  Due to this, we were in possession of a rocking chair for four out of four days.
 

Rock on.

Before the baby was born, Danielle’s dad hauled an unassembled rocking chair up four flights of stairs and spent the better part of an hour assembling it in front of a glass sliding door which had the sun beating down on it.  As a result, we were able to do our first feeding of the baby upon returning home in the comfort of a delightfully soft rocking chair.  At least, Danielle and the baby were.  I had to stand, fend off dogs that wanted to help and render assistance to Danielle.  Such is life.  We had to do some finger feedings for the first couple of days.

Rock on.

Claire agrees, in the classical sign language shared by all rockers alike:

 

Much Ado About Facial Hair

Alright, so there have been some questions about my facial hair.  I’m aware I’m hair deficient.  And that 14 year olds can go on three day camping trips and return looking like bushmen.  Nonetheless.  This is the birth story of my goatee.  Please, no questions.
 
In early December, I failed to shave for long enough to wind up looking homeless and maybe sickly.  I do not grow a magnificent beard.  My morning sickness stricken wife asked what was up and I jokingly told her I was growing a rally beard until she got over said morning sickness.  Like they did during the writers strike.  Or, like hockey fans do during the playoffs.  Though, I suspect they do it to store snacks in.  Anyway.  She thought this was a great idea.  Thus was born the rally goatee.  Because that’s apparently where my facial hair grows.  Think Joe Dirt. 
 

In June, I found myself having forgotten to trim my goatee with my last haircut.  My very pregnant and emotional wife asked if I was auditioning as a homeless person, which she indicated I could be if I wanted to look like one.  This was said with love.  Not having learned my lesson in December, I said I was growing it out in support of her for the home stretch.  The goatee made me uncomfortable and got in my nose when I slept.  She liked this idea. 

By July, people began to comment.  With my shaved head and glasses, I felt I looked like an effete Trotskiest considering membership in the Aryan Nations.  Less favorable, I think, some suggested I looked like a pedophile and thought I should avoid being within two hundred yards of a school.  Some couched their criticism in more polite terms: "You look stupid."  Thank you friends and family, for your support.

Here’s a picture of me gazing whistfully into the far ground in my OR garb minutes before Claire was born.  I don’t care what you say.  That’s hilarious.  Followed by one of my holding Claire.  Less hilarious. 

Shortly after the last picture, my beard was ritualistically laid to rest.  There’s video, but Danielle was zonked on Ambien at the time and I had only slept like 12 hours of the preceding 100 or so.  Suffice to say, upon review, it was weird.

So, that’s the birth story of my goatee.  More has now been said than is necessary.  No questions, please.