Wrestling Zombies.

I know I've shown this a few times already, but thought I might post it again today for those who haven't seen it.  Enjoy.

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Wrapped.

This is Daddy Talking:

Eat your dinner.

Take your medicine.

Get dressed.

Brush your hair.

Hold on a minute.

No TV right now.

Stop throwing things.

Each of those requests are met with silence, running away or a negative and/or a bargaining response.

But the other day, I come into the kitchen to see that Ladybug has made me "soup".   And attached to it was a note that said "I LOVE DADDY".  

Awwww right?!?  

Sure it was nice, but she wanted me to actually eat it.  I looked at KC who had received a bowl of "soup" as well.  It was a glance of did you have to eat yours?  She responded that she told her she did.

Hmm mmmm!

This is Ladybug Talking:

Eat your soup.

Here's the soup.


Cherrio's and Water with a nice little note.
How the heck could you turn that down with a note attached to it?  So I took a spoonful and proceded to enjoy my daughter's "soup".    It was cold.  It was mushy.  It tasted like cold unflavored oatmeal.

So now, I have this to lean on if she doesn't do what I ask.  If she doesn't brush her hair..... I'll just tape an "I LOVE LADYBUG" letter to the brush..

Maybe I could make it work for MaddSkillz when he won't mow the yard...

It should work.

Or maybe not because I'm pretty wrapped.

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Disco's Story.

With it being midway through Birthday Season, Disco's birthday falls during All-Star Week.  Today, Disco turns three years old.  Yes I will say it again, and I will say it with each kid even though it's cliche but, I CAN NOT BELIEVE HE'S ALREADY THREE.

I posted this last year and I read it to see if I could top it for this year, I decided that I couldn't.  So if you've read this before then read it again.  It's a good story.

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After my oldest daughter was born, my wife and I were content. We had my [step]son and now our baby girl. Within a few months we had to deal with our daughter being sick all the time. And I mean all the time. My wife was constantly taking off from work. She filed for FMLA and was out about 3 months. It was about to run out and they gave her the option to come back to work or to resign. We talked about it and she resigned.

It turns out my daughter has IgA deficiency. It's an immune disorder that makes her prone to illnesses and infections easier than others. She had GERD, numerous ear infections, coughs, colds, and even got a staph infection in her first nine months. She has had multiple invasive procedures to try and figure out what was wrong.

During this time my wife, who has previously stated she wants more children, said that she didn't want anymore kids. MaddSkillz was a breeze, outside the typical ear infections or colds. But trips to the Hematologists, ENT, and Gastros wore her out. I was bummed, because I wanted to have two more. But whatever Momma wanted, that's where I went.

Slowly she started to sway on the matter. She was considering it again. Maybe it was because Ladybug was getting better, but a short time later she was pregnant. We were excited. We were also concerned about what if this happens with this kid as well.

KC researched about the benefits of Cord Blood Storage. We found out that the saved cord blood could help with disorders such as what Ladybug has. We were going to do everything we could to save enough money to pay for the storage.

One day we get a phone call from the Cord Blood Registry. They told us that we approved to get the collection and storage for free.

Yes.

For Life!!

YES!!

If anything were to happen with Ladybug, we would be covered.

Like with Ladybug, KC ended up being on bed rest for my son as well. Her water broke while we were at a Halloween Party. I'm glad it did, because I had fallen asleep on the couch with the kids. We left Ladybug with grandpa and we trotted off the the hospital.

The labor went pretty quick. They didn't even have time to administer any anesthetic. Seth was born early in the three o' clock hour. My son was here. The first born son of a first born son of a first born son was here. I was concerned that I had given all this love to Ladybug that I wouldn't know how to treat this kid the same way. But when I held him, I love just flowed openly from my heart.

He was a month early and labeled pre-mature. He had to stay an extra day in the hospital which killed us. KC was discharged but they told us we could stay until 11PM. We milked every last second of that hospital room with him and was back first thing in the morning.

"Seth" means "at the appointed time." We weren't planning on having him when we did. Why would he come at 36 weeks instead of 37? Why would he come at a time when we were concerned about the health of his sister? The free gift of the cord blood? It was all at the "appointed time."

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When I carry him to his room at night and his chest is against mine as he holds on to my neck, I can feel my heart tugging to spend every last second with him.  I want to give him everything and regret not being able too.  Then I remember he's only three.  I have the rest of my life to give it all to him.

I love you Disco.  You make Daddy so very proud. 
 Happy Third Birthday.


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Everyday.

Pretty much everyday I am presented with a drawing or token from my daughter like the one you see here.


It doesn't matter how mad I might get with her the day before.  It doesn't matter how loud I end up yelling. I still get one of these everyday. 


I am a truly blessed man.

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Why My Daughter Cries...

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Perfection vs. Reality: Getting Ready for School

In my head, weekday mornings should go something like this....

5:20 - 5:30: Eric gets up with the intent on getting a jump start on the day whether it's reading, showering, anything to get him going.

6:00: Go in to the kids' room quietly to wake up Ladybug to begin getting ready for school.

6:07 - 6:15: Because Eric already has her clothes picked out, ironed and she listens to everything he says, she gets dressed without incident.  After she's dressed, her hair is brushed.

6:15: Since she has the option to eat breakfast at school, she chooses to eat breakfast there, brushes her teeth, takes any medicines and vitamins she requires,  flips on SpongeBob and just chills until it's time to go to the bus stop.

6:20: Eric goes to his bedroom to awaken Kristie.  He tells her Ladybug is ready to go and since he's done early he's going to go ahead and log into work to get an hour of overtime.  KC smiles but suggests since he's done early that they make out for ten minutes.

6:20 - 6:30: Cool.

6:30: Eric smiles as he logs into work.

6:45: MaddSkillz wakes up.

6:57: Ladybug puts on her backpack with all her homework and paperwork we've signed and heads out to the bus stop with MaddSkillz.

Sounds pretty reasonable right?


Well in actuality, it goes more like this.....

5:20: Alarm goes off... SNOOZE

5:27: Alarm goes off... SNOOZE

5:34 - 5:55: Alarm goes off... SNOOZE (x4)

6:02: Alarm goes off and Eric jumps out of bed.  He realizes that Ladybug is already in his bed, wakes her up and tip-toes out of his room not to wake up Emsters.

6:03:  Celi wakes up screaming. Eric rushes into the room before she wakes up Disco.

6:04: Emsters wakes up because Eric didn't turn off the baby monitor in his room and Celi screaming woke her up.

6:06: In the midst of changing diapers, Disco walks out of the room letting his dad know he's hungry.  Turns out he's also soaking wet because the cheap Target diapers we bought are far from absorbent.

6:06: Celi realizes she is hungry too.

6:06: Emsters been crying for three minutes because she's hungry too.

6:07:  Finding the least winkled clothes from clean laundry pile, Eric gives Ladybug her only option.

6:08 - 6:20: Doesn't like the clothes her dad picked out.  The pant legs are too long.  The socks are too big.  The socks are too small.  The 3/4 length sleeve doesn't cover her entire arm.

6:20:  Knowing that she probably didn't get a good sleep last night since Ladybug used her mad stealth skills to enter our bed, Eric has to call in for backup.

6:22 - 6:27:  Finally able to get to Disco and his pee soaked clothes, Eric has to give him an emergency bath while KC convinces Ladybug at least ninety-seven times to let her brush her hair.

6:25:  The dogs managed to escape from the backyard.

6:30:  Ladybug says she will eat at school, KC searches for a clean fork and plate but can't find one because MaddSkillz didn't wash dishes last night, makes breakfast for Disco and Celi, puts Emsters in her high chair and gives her a bottle.

6:30 - 6:40:  Eric is in the backyard trying to block the gate with various objects to keep the dogs in.

6:42:  Ladybug changes her mind and says she will eat breakfast at home.

6:42 - 6:47:  More searching for clean dishes and making Ladybug's breakfast.

6:48 - 6:54:  Ladybug scarfs down her breakfast.

6:55:  Where's MaddSkillz?  We open his door to the blaring sound of his alarm going off next to his head with him completely unaware.

6:56:  Realize we forgot to sign Ladybug's folders and put them back in her backpack.

6:58 - 7:01:  Eric takes Ladybug to the bus stop.  Ladybug remembers she did not take her vitamin, medicine or brush her teeth.

7:01:  The dogs are out again, but are present to tell Ladybug goodbye.

7:05 - 7:15:  Attempts to block the hole in the gate with something else.  If it doesn't work he'll just shoot them.

7:17:  MaddSkillz comes out of his room asking if we took Ladybug to the bus stop.

7:20:  With everything seemingly taken care of and 10 minutes before he really has to log into work, he asks KC if she wants to make out for ten minutes.  She refuses citing she's tired and frustrated and also including that even if she wasn't, Eric hasn't shaved in over a week and he still has that cold sore.

7:20 - 7:30: Not cool.

7:30:  Eric logs into work with a frown.

So what about your mornings??  Are they perfect?  Closer to reality with multiple children or somewhere in the middle??

Have a great week my friends.

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Congrats...

I used to enjoy baseball quite often.. But not so much anymore.. I just don't have the time to commit to an entire game.  But since it's been a long time coming.. I'd like to congratulate Chuck Norris Texas Ranger on his win over the Yankees...

Lets hope he leg-sweeps the World Series and then finishes it off with a few round house kicks...

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28 HOURS LATER.

A breakout occurred a few days ago.  My three youngest kids were infected with pink eye.  I'm not sure where they got it from, Scott Baio, but it knocked them out pretty nasty.

After confirming Emsters had it on Wednesday morning, KC came home only to discover Disco and Celi were coming down with the infection as well.  So it was back to the doctor on Ladybug's birthday.

So knowing he was sick, I decided to play with Disco anyways during a break from work.  I was laying on the couch and I was holding him up above me like most parents have with their kids.  When all of a sudden drool came down and landed right in my eye.

I quickly remembered that scene in 28 Days Later where the bird is chewing on some human remains and some infected blood drops into a survivors eye.

Approximately twenty-eight hours later, I started developing the chills and fever.  No sign of of pink eye yet, but I guess this is the time of year I get sick.  I don't think it'll be a great weekend.

Just a warning to all.. Stay out of Boltonshire...

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THE Exact Moment

I reluctantly went to work Friday morning.  Not for any commitment I have to the company, but rather for the commitment I have for my family.  I've been here a while and every application I fill out online comes back as "we are going with someone else".   I hate being on phones all day, but I have to do what I need to do for my family and just suck it up.

KC was in the hospital last week.  Overtime I've gotten used to the trips to the Methodist Hospital.  I wasn't prepared for it when we were married, but when there's a history and concern it's best to go.  

A lot of things we're going  in my head this morning.  Changes that we're coming.  How everyday seems different and stressful, yet the same and calming.  Kind of like a hurricane. So there I am at work, lost in thought and spinning the usual wheels I need to spin while I'm there.  

MaddSkillz stayed home from school that day.  The thing I realized about MaddSkillz pretty quickly was when he said he felt bad he probably did.  So he'd stay home from school and was all better by 10AM.  I figure it was okay if he stayed home that day.  Once 10AM passed, he'd be feeling better and would be able to help out his mom with anything she needed.  

I get a call on my cell.  It was KC.  I'm currently on the phone with a customer whom I put on hold while I take the call.

"It's happening again.  Rita told me to come on in..."

"Are you able to drive?"

"I guess I have too."

"I'll be outside.  See you when you get here.  Be careful."

About 20 minutes later she picked me up and we went to the doctor's office.

"Well, we can either send you home and have you come back later or we can just admit you now."

My wife and I look at each other.

"Admit now!" 

A short time later, a nurse is escorting us to Labor and Delivery.  

We did the normal procedures we went through every time we rushed to L&D when signs of pre-term labor happened.  MaddSkillz would look at the monitor and predict when the next would happen, while I called the family, friends and co-workers to let them know what's going on.  We had an excellent nurse, whose name I forgot, but really helped KC through it all.  

As the hours passed and we were getting closer to the big moment, my dad, her mom and step-dad showed up.  MaddSkillz predictions were happening every two minutes or so when the doctor and what seemed like eighty other hospital staff stood around and watched my wife scream and squeeze my fingers with a crippling effect.

We secluded the dad's in the "waiting alcove", which in this particular room was about sixteen square feet.  My dad and father in law did not know each other that well on Friday.  But sitting in that tiny alcove with a closed paper thin barrier all they could do is sit their and only look at each other in silence as their daughter/in-law screams.

We decide to let MaddSkillz stay in the room with us.  In the final moments, I am on the bedside to KC's right, MaddSkillz is to my left at the top of the bed, Nana is to my right, and Nice Nurse is on KC's left.  After a couple of pushes, the doctor says, "I see the head." When all of a sudden we hear a patented MaddSkillz cry.  I'm not trying to be to be mean, but it sounds almost like an asthmatic goose. Well MaddSkillz is all of a sudden balling and the whole room stops, including his mother, and I ask what's the matter.  His reply?

"I'm just so happy!"

Now all of us we're crying like asthmatic geese.  Some words of encouragement,  a few pushes coupled with crippled fingers and a few seconds later I saw my Ladybug for the first time.  We had done it.   We made it through all the problems we had with the pregnancy.  The world stopped at that moment.  Nothing else mattered.  The unloved job, financial problems, the sickness and hospital trips and now crippled fingers, none of it was in issue.  It had all been worth it seeing them clean my perfect baby.

I had no idea what I was going to do next and I didn't care.  I just stayed in that moment at 5:43PM on that  Friday afternoon as long as I could.  Because that is the exact moment I was indwelled with a new form of love and  I became a Daddy.

Happy 5th Birthday Ladybug.  Thank you for choosing me to be your father.

Hard to believe this was only FIVE years ago.

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When My Wife Wakes Up

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Columbus Day Rewind

I didn't really have anything for today..  I remembered making these last year during Columbus Day.  It's probably best if you view these in a reader.  If not, click on the pictures and it should take you to the original posts.  Enjoy....

Or not..



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Birthday Season


Some people get excited because October is the climax of the baseball season.  Some people are also stoked because basketball season starts this month.  And those of you who live above the Mason Dixon line are the only ones who care about hockey season, that too begins in October.  And let's not forget the foosball season is concurrently going on as well.  October brings a different kind of season for us here in Boltonshire.  


October brings BIRTHDAY SEASON!!

Ladybug's fifth birthday is October 14th.  Disco's third birthday is two weeks later on October 28th and Celi closes out the kids's parties on November 12th.

Usually everyone is worn out from those three they usually forget Daddy's upcoming 26th birthday is November 17th.  

I guess if my kids had Facebook, they would get the reminder a day before at least.

So with the start of Birthday Season, we have to decide how we are going to get through it.  Sure the best thing to do is to just not acknowledge it is their birthday, but we would have grandmas all mad at us.    Like I've mentioned before, we don't get invited to a lot of places because we got five kids. So getting people to come over three times in a six week period would probably piss people off.  Some might just say, "Hey, he's Disco's present for his birthday, tell'em I said whatever."

The best thing to do is to consolidate the parties into one.  It's easiest logistically for KC and myself and for guests.  As much as I would love to have it at home and be a gracious host, my house is not ready for a party such as this.  That is why we must seek out a pizza place.

Plus I can make THEM clean it up.

My wife met someone that is going to make the cakes for the party.  The girls are going to get princess cakes and we'll give Disco the generic boy firetruck cake.  Ladybug will probably want the firetruck and there will be a HUGE argument, but these are my kids.  I can't get rid of them and I'll get in trouble if I duct tape them to the wall.

Now while the birthday party is fun, it's not actually on any of the kids' birthdays.  For this reason we usually special dinner, cake, ice cream and a present or two on their actual birthday.

I'm  excited because I told KC I wanted to make the cakes  for the home parties.  I believe I came up with a winner last night.  I'll hold off sharing it until I accomplish it and show off pictures of my hopefully creative endeavor. 

All this starts next week.  Have a great weekend my friend.

While you're at it.. Go check out Dad-Blogs Fatherhood Friday event-extravaganza!!!!!!!!!



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Cleaning Up

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The School Dance

On the way home Monday, MaddSkillz brought up next week is the Home Coming dance. Home Coming had never been brought up before, and when he mentioned the event I was shocked he even acknowledged it.

I guess since MaddSkillz is allowed to date now he considers functions such as this.  But he tells me he's only going to go if he's nominated for Duke. Apparently since he is big time actor and celebrity now, he will only make public appearances if there's some sort of compensation.

Since his girlfriend goes to a different school now, there would be an extra step he would need to accomplish if he wanted to go.

The school (probably the district) is requiring students fill out an "application" for their dates if they do not go to his school.  He of course thinks it's stupid because it's extra work.  I personally think it's a pretty smart and safe idea.

He asked why.

It's to prevent guys from bringing hookers and chicks from bringing their 40 year old creepy boyfriends.

Being a parent, I totally support this rule.  I can only assume the "application" has some sort of parental permission attached to it.  So if you're cool with your teenage daughter dating 40 year old creepy boyfriend, then you should have nothing to worry about.

What do my three readers think of this rule?  Again I know most of you don't have teenagers just yet, but if you did would you support it or not?

Have a great day my friends.

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The Backyard

I mowed the front and back yards this weekend.  I say yard because I don't consider what I have as lawns mainly because I don't have what some would call grass.  Lawns are supposed to be luscious beautiful embellishments to a home, but what I have is not.

We've lived here five years now and I've never had grass.  The grass was dead when we moved in from being vacant about six months, and I have never been able to restore it.  Sure I could till it and throw some fertilizer down and then water it, but I have never had the chance to.

It's been five years, Eric! What do you mean you've never been able to?

If you've read my blog for more than thirty-seconds, you've realized how hectic and busy my life has increased over the past five years.  Stuff on the inside of the house (not material things) needed more tending to than the outside of the house.  This includes, a sick wife, new babies, sick babies, and an exorbitant amount of overtime, just to keep things above water.

What would be my lawns have suffered.

In place of grass are clover looking weedish type things.  In the summer, the ground is dirty and hot and not very inviting to play outside.  It's been years since I've mentioned about hosting a BBQ because I'm just too dang embarrassed.

A few weeks ago, MaddSkillz and I took down the trampoline that assaulted Disco and broke his arm.  With it gone, it freed up a good portion of the yard that has previously been under utilized.  I moved the play set which I previously had on the patio to the spot where the trampoline previously inhabited. I cleaned up the patio and with the nice breezy morning, I let the kids play outside again.

They ran, they jumped, they played, they laughed.  They had a great time out there.

I just sat on the patio for a couple hours and watched them enjoy themselves silently thinking this will wear them out for bedtime.  I sat there thinking of ways to make the backyard better.  Thinking of when I will have to make time to do it.  But then it hit me....

The backyard is perfect as far as the kids are concerned.  They don't watch home improvement shows and see what above average families have in regards to landscaping or play equipment and silently covet what they have.  Right now, they're not embarrassed to ask friends over to play.  To them the backyard is just that. a backyard.

It's a place where they can run, jump, play and laugh.  They don't give a crap about there's sometimes more dirt than green back there.  They're kids, they'll make due.

It still doesn't mean I want to be having any backyard BBQ's anytime soon...

Ladybug "Huly Hooping"

Disco From Downtown!!

Celi Going Down The Slide

Emsters Playing Baby Hockey

Is there anything about your home you're not satisfied with?  No matter how many kids you have, how do you make the times to do the upgrades you would like to do?

Have a great week my friends...

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