Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

So you're probably wondering where I've been.  Or probably not.  I've been sick as a dog for the past week on a steady diet of Nyquil, Dayquil and all the other Quils.  But I promise I'll actually be writing this week.  You may even enjoy it.  But the one thing that laziness allows is my fake Twitter Machine.

-I miss the days of the cheesy 80s tv theme song. There just isn't anything like the Perfect Strangers theme.
-Our house was quite somber after the Buster Posey injury. Thinking of sending a picture of Grace to cheer him up.
-Can't find one of the discs from Netflix. Now we're a 2 disc family. Great.
-Had Thai food for the first time since Erin got pregnant. It was glorious.
-Now that it lets me spend time with the girls, I appreciate 3-day weekends even more.
-Watching your babies sleep=Cute. Watching someone else's babies sleep=A little creepy.
-The tracker on blogger that tells you where your audience lives is so interesting. Malaysia is reading my blog?
-Read The Hunger Games after my wife raved about it. I feel like there was so much untapped potential in the series.
-Seriously where is the Ender's Game movie?
-Ana has teeth coming in on the top. It's adorable, but she kinda looks like a hillbilly.
-What is the cutoff for acceptable number of people in group at a restaurant without renting a room?
-Sam Adams Summer Ale season is upon us. That's a good thing.
-Erin and I are watching 30 Rock from the beginning.  I'd seen episodes before but not every one of them until now.
-The whole "I" versus "Me" thing really bothers me.  If I'm in a picture with someone, it is someone and me not someone and I.

That's it for this week of the Twitter Machine.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

I've been sick as a dog.  It sucks balls.  I have no motivation to write or be creative or post anything really.  Luckily I've been tracking my Twitter Machine thoughts throughout the week.  I can look creative and productive with minimal effort.  That is what I'm talking about.  So read on...

-If it takes more than 5 seconds to decipher your personalized plates, what's the point?
-All the open houses make me excited for when the girls start school.
-Dealing with other bad kids and bad parents doesn't make me excited for school.
-Human nature: People expecting rewards from no work.
-I don't understand a sequel to The Hangover. I mean I understand the cash grab but not logistically.
-Lance Armstrong is a douche. Cancer or not, he is a cheat and a rat.
-Do I look taller on this soapbox?
-I will miss you Macho Man. One of the top 5 biggest stars of my childhood.
-All this Oprah love for the end of her show is a little much. She started a network, so she'll probably still have a show.
-Being sick is the worst. Can't play with the girls or sleep well. Hate it.
-Might just be me, but I love the feeling of getting into a hot car when I'm sick and achey.
-There's no alcohol in Nyquil anymore. Stupid prohibitionists.
-You have to be a huge POS to go on The Biggest Loser and not lose any weight.
-My wife loves terrible television, so of course she has locked our tv on to The Bachelorette. Just a horrible show.

I'm off to drown my sorrows in more cold medication.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


I know it's a little played out at this point to write about the rapture.  Which in and of itself is ridiculous.  We're really talking about the rapture as if it is serious business, and everyone is talking about it.  It's getting coverage on news broadcast.  Radio shows have been going on and on about it.  People are writing serious articles about it.

It would suck if it was actually true, but it could be worse.  I've at least led a pretty good life up to this point.

I've gotten to experience the following:
  • I'm not a virgin.  Not saying that being a virgin is a bad thing, but virginity probably tops the list of things you don't want to be in possesion of when you get to the pearly gates.
  • Finished high school and college.
  • I married my best friend, and she loves me a lot.
  • We traveled all around the world together (Spain, Italy, Ireland, etc.).
  • I went to a World Series game in which my team was playing.
  • I saw the Giants win the World Series.  Seriously there were times when I thought I wouldn't see that before I died.
  • I ran a marathon and multiple half-marathons.
  • We bought a house in a wonderful neighborhood.
  • I found out I was going to be a dad.
  • I watched the birth of my daughters.
  • They've since smiled and laughed which has filled my heart with more joy than anything.
  • They actually seem to recognize me and are happy when I come home.
I can't complain about anything I've done with my life.  There are however still things I'd like to experience.
  • I want to hear my daughters' first words.
  • I want to see them take their first steps.
  • Their first day of school.
  • There are so many places I'd still like to see like Germany, Australia and Japan.
  • Sky-diving seems like it would be pretty fun.
  • My kids getting married and starting their own families.
  • The Kings winning the NBA championship.
Mostly I just want my kids to have as full and as rich a life as I've had.  They shouldn't get robbed of all these experiences because some stupid rapture.

As ridiculous as this whole rapture thing is, it does help put into perspective that I have a lot of life left to live and my daughters have even more.  If the rapture does happen, I've already come to the conclusion that my wife will head on, and I'll be left behind a la that Kirk Cameron movie.  She is obviously a much better person than me and will take the girls with her.  I'll have to look after any pets and hang out with all the others that didn't make the cut.  At least no more Jehovah's Witnesses and Mormons will be bothering me while I'm watching tv.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

All Singing, All Dancing

I love singing to Grace and Ana.  Love it.

I get the feeling that they love it too.  They get huge smiles on their faces when I do which puts a huge smile on my face which causes them to smile even bigger.  It's a vicious cycle.

We have a routine in place where Erin gets the bath ready, and I change them and get them ready for the bath.  While we're doing our routine I sing and dance and do whatever I can to get my giggle fix.  The songs I sing are the only thing that isn't part of the routine.  I'll sing whatever comes in my mind.  Whether it be Walking on Sunshine by Katrina and the Waves or Magic by Ben Kweller or Lost in the Supermarket by The Clash.  My repertoire knows no bounds, and the girls appreciate my range and knowledge of various musical genres.  Or they like the silly faces I make while singing.  Either way.

I also sing to them if they're a little excited and not going down so easily when it is sleep time.  That's when I'll whip out the various lullaby songs that I love.  Ben Folds or Elizabeth Mitchell or Amos Lee are all go to songs that calm the girls down.

They like singing so much that Erin joined in on the fun the other night.  We sang That's Amore while dancing around the kitchen.  Then we moved into a medley of Beatles songs.  Babies love The Beatles.  They're quite fond of the early work of John, Paul, George and Ringo.  I Want to Hold Your Hand and She Loves You may be their favorites.  We danced and sang with them all the way from the kitchen to the nursery and back down again.  We smiled and laughed, and it was a total family affair.

I also bring this up because I'm not able to do my song routine on nights when Erin has Mom's Night Out for her twins group.  At that point it is all about getting through bath time and bottle time.  Game face time.  It not only throws me off, but it also seems to take them out of their comfort zone.  Maybe I give a little too much credit to my dulcet tones, but it's something they enjoy and not doing it takes that enjoyment away.  Or maybe it just puts me in an infectious good mood that they catch.

Either way a day or night without singing to my daughters just isn't the same, and I'll keep singing away until it embarrasses them (and probably even after that).

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

Back again for another Twitter Machine Tuesday.  I'm never going to have my own Twitter Machine, and my wife only hammered that point home with her post about the Twitter Machine.  It just doesn't appeal to me, and I'd prefer to post those thoughts here.  So without further ado...

-I may be the greatest Sudoku player ever. At least top ten in Northern California.
-Ana gets so upset that she can't move on her own. She rolls over, kicks her legs frantically and cries.
-Words I learned in high school that I love: ramshackle, ebullient, fraught, quagmire, loquacious.
-I'm eating garlic fries this weekend for the first time all baseball season. Oh and going to a ball game. So exciting.
-I'm rooting so hard against LeBron. He just makes it so easy to hate him.
-Strained sweet potatoes < sweet potato fries. Luckily the girls can't tell they're getting an inferior product.
-Ke$ha was put on the earth to make Lady Gaga seem more tolerable.
-Crazy weather makes me happy. Reminds me of my time in Colorado.
-Can't wait for my girls to play on a sandy beach and a snowy mountain. One of those California joys.
-Whatever happened to dressing up? We used to wear suits and dresses. I blame the 60s and all those hippies.
-Netflix was definitely not invented with new parents in mind. Basically we've become a 3 disc storage and pay a monthly fee.
-Grace cut her first tooth! Ana got hers so early that I started to wonder. Now Ana has top teeth coming in.
-Can't tell you how much I love baby giggles. Makes every day better.
-Negative people suck. What has bitching and moaning ever solved? Also it makes people not like you.
-Parks & Rec is the funniest show on tv, and it's not even close.
-I don't know why Matthew Sweet wasn't more popular in his heyday. I love his music.
-Two hours of Biggest Loser every week is such overkill. Just show them falling off of treadmills and quit the product placements.
-When your kids smile at you the moment you walk in the door, no better feeling in the world.

Have a great week everyone.  Check out my "tweets" next week.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

1000 Words

Did you miss me last week?  Don't lie.  I know you didn't, but I'm not offended.  The truth is that I oftentimes forget to take pictures throughout the week and end up cramming everything from the previous day into a picture post.  Not the case this week.  I was semi-proactive even.

So sit back (or lean forward or whatever) and enjoy my pictures from the week that was.

grab a beer button

In honor of the person that started this whole week in pictures shindig, I've grabbed my IPA (accept no substitute) for the party.

It has literally been months since I've gotten a haircut.  I think I've had a pretty good excuse what with the little ones and having a full-time job and all.  This was the week where the hair had to go.  It becomes downright unmanagable when it gets to a certain length.  Something I'm not looking forward to as far as our girls.  This is the before picture.

And the after picture.  I'm defintiely more aerodynamic now.

This is a part of my "Hate to go to work everyday" collection.  Basically Erin sends me pictures whenever she is at home with the girls.  I love getting them, but I hate that I can't experience them in person.  If there is anyone out there that wants to pay me boatloads of money to stay at home, I'll sign whatever contracts you want.

Grace has "discovered" her toes.  She is much like Columbus in that she was looking for a passage to India and instead found something much more interesting.

Food Coma

I always love poking my head into the nursery before I leave for work in the morning.  This is what I found on Thursday morning.  Grace has started to take after her mom and is pulling blankets over her head.  Ana has now been rolling over in the middle of the night to sleep on her stomach.

What'd I do?

Obligatory Saturday morning in bed picture.

Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Work It Out

I've never been the type to share a lot of my personal life with co-workers.  If I can be 100% honest, it probably stems from the fact that I've never been interested to hear about co-workers' kids.  This probably has caused me to project my own feelings on others.  If I don't want to hear about how your kid passed his spelling test, you must not want to hear about my kid rolling over for the first time.

Yet ever since I returned to work after the girls were born, I have fielded non-stop questions about them and how they are doing.

Maybe it stems more from the whole freak show, car accident aspect of twins.  "I have to check in with him because twins are so weird, and he must have some horror stories."  They must want to know how I'm not getting any sleep and how difficult it's been.  They just want to laugh at my assumed misfortune.  My pain is their pleasure.  Like child schadenfreude.  It makes them feel better if I'm feeling worse.

But the thing is I don't ever complain about my girls (not yet at least), so that can't be their motivation to keep asking me about them.

So what is it that makes them care so much?

I've realized it's a combination of things.  People love babies.  They just love them.  They especially love two babies.  Like twice as much even.  Many of them had their own babies at one time or another, so they are also reliving the glory days of child rearing.  Because let's be honest, babies are awesome.  Everything is so adorable and new with babies, and people love hearing about that stuff.  The other reason may be a little self-centered, but I have also come to the realization that the people I work with actually care about me.  Why not, right?  I'm not a awful person (at least I don't think I am).  I just never really thought about how we spend so much time with the people we work with and we develop strong relationships with them.  I've actually spent more time with my coworkers than my children which makes me sad, but I get it.

Everyone in the office was excited to meet Grace and Ana when they finally visited for the first time.  People crowd around me when I pull out any pictures of them.  They've even started asking when the girls would be by to visit again.  It has moved me and made me start asking others about their kids and families.  They care so much that it actually has made me care.  And I like that.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

Once again I'm coming at you with thoughts from my fake Twitter Machine.  I'm never going to create a Twitter Machine account, so I post my randomness here.  Enjoy.

-I buy Vincent D'Onofrio as Thor more than this new guy #adventuresinbabysitting
-We're weighing a Vegas trip. I love it there, but I don't want to leave Grace & Ana even for 24 hours.
-Can't say I've not watched a second of American Idol anymore. Thanks to @erinsgirls & Carole King night.
-We have Giants tix for later this month. Trying to convince the wife to take the girls to their first game.
-Corona is such a second rate Mexican beer. Dos Equis Amber, Negro Modelo, Pacifico, et all
-If I had a time machine, I wouldn't go to the dinosaurs or the American Revolution. I'd go watch Willie Mays play baseball.
-Baptisms are so cool. BBQing 20lbs of chicken is not.
-How long before stupid people find the use of the word "stupid" to be offensive?
-@erinsgirls is getting sick. Gonna have to step my dad/husband game up.
-Ana has to be days from crawling. Grace is moving at her own pace.
-Elvis Costello was playing in our area yesterday. Of course me going was never happening. #parentscanthavefun
-How come when you decide not to spend money is the exact time when something expensive stops working? I hate that crap.
-Girl scout cookies are so overrated. Keebler can do anything that the Girl Scouts can do better and cheaper. That's the American way.
-Baby smiles are like crack. So addictive, and you'd do anything to get more.

Comment below. And try to limit it to as many friggin characters as you'd like.

Monday, May 9, 2011

On Faith

I don't think I put it out there that often that faith is a big part of my life.  I don't like to get too preachy about it because no one wants to have that sort of thing hammered over their head.  In fact I may actually come across as the exact opposite.  I say a lot of inappropriate things.  I cuss quite a bit (especially if I'm frustrated with the Giants).  I don't especially like my fellow man, and I can be quite anti-social.  Not the normal attributes of your standard Joe Church.

Faith or being religious isn't about being perfect like so many people think.  It is about admitting your imperfections and working on them.  It is about understanding that you need help no matter who you are.  It is about being a part of something bigger than you. A community of faith if you will.

There was a time when I was actually seriously considering the priesthood when I was in high school.  I went to a Catholic high school.  It was a wonderful community.  We cared about each other.  We would defend and support each other through thick and thin.  We had retreats to strengthen our faith and grow as men.  I got to know people I called friends on these retreats, and I developed deeper relationships with acquaintances.  I had the honor and priviledge to lead one of these retreats late in my Senior year.  The other leaders and I stayed up late telling stories and jokes.  More inappropriate stuff, believe me.  And we got even closer.  I opened up to people with things I had never told anyone.  I came out of the experience thinking that the priesthood and helping others may be my ultimate calling.

It's funny how that can all change when you see your future wife.

Obviously I'm not a Catholic priest what with the wife and kids.  Over the past few years I hadn't been as in touch with my faith.  Career and outside distractions seemed to move me further away from what I always deemed so much more important.  Ironically the person that may have changed my mind regarding the priesthood was the same person that has brought so much faith back to my life.  Erin is like a never-ending fountain of faith and belief.  She even taught religion in high school for heaven's sake.  Her school was another community of faith that once again welcomed me with open arms.

My faith has once again been reawakened with the birth of my daughters.  I truly look at them as a gift from God because I certainly don't think I've worked for such a great reward.  They amaze me every day and make me believe even more that there is something greater than me.  I want them to know all the same gifts that I do.  To know that there is a community that will support them and guide them that is beyond me and their mother.

This was one of the biggest reasons why we baptized the girls this past Sunday.  It was their introduction into that community of faith, and there were scores of people there to welcome them.  It was yet another inspiring moment in the life of a dad.  Here were all these people that just wanted to be a part of the lives of Grace and Ana.  It was a beautiful experience that only solidified my belief, and it made me feel lucky to be involved in something bigger.

I may continue to cuss and say things that embarass the hell out of my wife.  I may still lack patience with others.  I'm not going to be a priest like I thought back in high school.  But I love the path I'm on, and I love the community of faith that has always seemed to surround me.  It's a gift that I hope Grace and Ana inherit.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Evolution of a Mom

The mother of my children wasn't always the mother of my children.  Before that she was my wife, and before that she was my girlfriend.  Looking back even further, she was just a girl that I had a thing for in high school.

It's funny how love can go from something as innocent as meeting in a high school play and chatting on AIM, but that is exactly how Erin and I met and got to know each other.  We had a chemistry when we first met that is very hard to explain.  But it was untapped potential at first because I was dating someone else, and she thought I was gay (seriously that isn't a joke and I've never been able to get her reasoning behind it).  Nevertheless we definitely spent a lot of time together during that musical and carried on that relationship online through Instant Messenger (remember that form of communication kids?).

When I was dumped by girlfriend (it was for the best, obviously), I wasted no time pursuing a relationship with Erin.  We chatted constantly.  When she came home to visit from USD, I made it a point to spend time with her.  It was fairly obvious that I liked her, and I definitely wanted her to realize that this was the case.  It wasn't long before we were dating and I was meeting her family.  It wasn't long before we shared our first kiss.  We were on the phone together until late at night.  I'd visit her as often as I could, and we'd spend every free moment we could together.

We became the success story when it comes to long-distance relationships.  She lived in San Diego and then Spain, and I lived in Sacramento then Colorado.  Yet we were able to overcome those times apart because our times together made everything worth it.  We made each other laugh.  We got along with each others families.  I went through the ultimate vetting process with her family friends and developed lasting relationships with them too.  We truly enjoyed any time we had together, and we made it a point to spend as much time as we could with each other as possible.

I knew that Erin would be my wife from the day we started dating and seven years later that became true.  I loved being married to my best friend that challenged me, loved me and actually laughed and got it when I made inappropriate comments or jokes.  There were struggles early on as we adapted to living together for the first time and not being in a long distance relationship for once in our time together.  We argued about money and our roles in the house.  We adjusted to this new life together, and we realized that our happiness together was 100 times greater than it would ever be on our own.

Now Erin has taken on yet another role in our relationship.  She is now the mother of my children.  Really it was something that I knew would be the case from very early on, but you never know what it means until it actually happens.  She took on the role as mother like an expert (or at least she was comfortable enough to fake it without me noticing).  I wouldn't want another woman raising Grace and Ana.  They are the luckiest girls in the world to have the mother that they do.  She is so caring and full of love, and that was always there even looking back at the different stages of our life together.  I should have know that she'd be such a great mom because she was great at everything else.

I'd like to think that Grace and Ana have the mom that they do because of the crush/girlfriend/wife that I knew before they came around.  I love the mom that Erin has become just like I loved the wife she became and the girlfriend and crush before that.  I appreciate who she is now, but I'll never forget who she was before.  Erin has made me realize that mothers are more than just their kids.  They are every relationship that has led up to that point and every relationship since.  They are a reflection of their parents and family.  They are also their friends and community.  We often lose track of the many layers that make up a mother, and I'm glad that Erin has finally opened my eyes to all of them.

Happy Mother's Day to Grace and Ana's mom and my loving and beautiful wife.  Thank you for being who you are and who you have been at every point in our life together.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Scary World

As you've no doubt heard/read/seen by now, Osama Bin Laden was killed by the US military.  There were a lot of reactions and a lot to process on Sunday night.  But basically it seemed like a lot of people found closure.  After everything had settled Erin and I talked about what this meant to us and our world.  We knew that a terrible man was gone and couldn't harm anyone else, but we couldn't decide if it made us or the world any safer.

I don't care how big picture you look at the world; having kids expands it significantly.  I knew there were bad people in the world that wanted to hurt me, but I figured that I'd be okay.  I thought that maybe one day we'd get the bad guys, and we wouldn't have to worry about it anymore.  Now I worry about the people that want to do harm to others (namely the US) because there are two little ones in my life that need my protection.   I'm not just responsible for myself anymore.  I have to be selfless, and I would do anything to protect them from harm.  There are unfortunately things that I can't protect them from.  Namely fear.  I actually fear them constantly being scared.

My girls and the children of the next generation shouldn't have to live in a world where fear and hatred dominate the news cycle.  There shouldn't be multiple threat levels to worry them.  They shouldn't have to fear someone wanting to hurt them simply because of where they were born.  They should welcome others no matter what god they pray to, and the others should do the same.  They shouldn't have to continue to pay for our mistakes and the mistakes of the generations before us.  It may be an overly simplistic view of things, but I can't think of a better gift to give my girls.  They don't deserve a broken world.  They don't deserve to have their innocence ripped away from them.

I do think the world is a better place with Bin Laden not in it.  It is one less terrible person that didn't respect human life.  But I don't think the death of Bin Laden has gotten us any closer to the world I envision for my girls.  Someone will try to fill his footsteps, and there will be plenty more waiting in line behind whomever does.  It is a sad truth, but I hope that someday we run out of those hateful people.  I hope there are people all over the world that just want the same thing for their children.  I hope that we're not the only parents teaching our children to love their fellow man (and woman).  That will be the day when the world that I've dreamt of for my girls will become a reality.

I just want them to live in a happier world

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

Coming at you a little late this week on Twitter Machine Tuesday. My wife came to the realization today that the Twitter Machine is simply a way to be in touch with people you don't actually know. You follow celebrities and sports teams and other bloggers. Basically it is impersonal facebook.

-We've started experimenting with the girls eating bananas. Grace seems to like them; Ana is suspect.
-Grace also seems to like avocado.
-Tyler Perry is the black Ernest. Just a richer version.
-You have the right to say any inane, stupid thing you'd like. Just like I have the right to ignore it.
-I once told a guy who had his leg amputated that I'd do what I could to get him back on his feet. Add it to my "Going to hell" list.
-What percentage of textsfromlastnight and autocorrects are completely made up? 90%? 95%?
-I wonder how many people have intentionally gained weight to try to win Biggest Loser.
-Chocolate-covered bacon is so atrociously bad. I guess you can't just throw a couple awesome things together and expect greatness.
-The girls love when you surprise them. It's pretty much a surefire giggle.
-Royal wedding=waste of time. Prince William is just Paris Hilton with a better jaw line. #famousbecausetheirparents
-I feel like I could do a whole post on under-appreciated musicians.
-Navy SEALs got Bin Laden. Charlie Sheen was in the movie Navy Seals. Winning?
-Michael Scott has to be a top ten television character, right? His last episode was a little bit disappointing though.
-Another food I've missed since my wife gave up dairy: lasagna.
-My girls just celebrated their 6 month birthday. By celebrated I mean they drooled, smiled, spit up and pooped. Sounds like a good day.
-My wife wrote an excellent post about our girls at 6 months. You should definitely read it.

That's all for this week. Leave your 140-character thoughts in the comment section.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

1000 Words

Big night in our nation's history.  Very heavy stuff going on in the world right now.  But I'm going to keep it light with me week in pictures.  As always I link back to Kim and ask you all check out her and everyone else's week.

grab a beer button

We started using strollers other than our normal Chico stroller.  The one you see is our standard twin stroller.  The other is a side-by-side jogger.  I haven't used either yet, but it amazes me how much Grace and Ana have grown.  To think that they were both so small in the car seats, and they are now big enough to sit in a stroller.

I came home from work earlier this week, and found Grace napping in this position.  I love that she is sleeping with her legs crossed.

Erin threw a Bridal Shower for my sister on Saturday night.  She really knows how to put a table of appetizers or any sort of food together.  That catering background pays off.  In fact the table was almost too pretty.

The girls and I were basically sequestered upstairs to avoid all that estrogen.  Her is Ana as we played on the floor.

Grace was enjoying her one on one time with daddy and her sister.

The morning after

Grace was pooped after such an exciting night.

The girls enjoyed their week, and I hope you enjoyed it too.