Sunday, July 31, 2011

1000 Words

So I know it's been quite some time since I've posted a week in pictures.  But I apologize for nothing.  I have twins and a full time (sometimes more than full time) job.  I'm a busy dad.  I mean my daughters are both crawling now which is a full time job in and of itself.  So instead of trying to give you excuses, I'm going to post pictures of my adorable daughters and make you forget all about not seeing them in weeks.

As per usual, I'm linking back up with Kim's Grab A Beer post.


My brother got married last weekend, and we definitely had a blast.  I love weddings so much.  I love them even more when I get to dance and have fun with my wife and celebrate my family getting bigger.  And look how beautiful my wife is.  She is so lovely.

As has been written my girls are crawling and getting into all sorts of mischief.  This is them crawling all over me.  It is a blast because at least their in one place, and I don't have to chase after them.

Here is Ana the technophile discovering that she can stand and reach the electronic devices.  This is a new wrinkle in trying to keep her out of trouble.  I'm all for playing Wii because at least it will keep them active.  Of course at this point they will just eat the controllers.  No perfect games in Wii bowling coming from them.

And here is Ana in her glass case of emotion a.k.a. the sliding glass door.

Erin had the day off this week and brought the girls down to visit me while I was working.  There is no better lunch date than your wife and your daughters.  Of course everyone at my office loves my girls and think they're the cutest.

We went over to my sister and brother-in-law's house this weekend.  It was a great barbeque and a relaxing day with my family.  The girls played in the grass and tried crawling after my brother and sister's dogs.  We also learned a game that my brother-in-law played back in Ohio.  It was called French Darts or Frisbeer depending on who you talk to.  Basically the point of the game is to throw a frisbee and knock a bottle off a pvc tube.  There is a point system that I'd rather not go into at this point, but it was pretty damn fun.

Grace is my sunshine.  And her shirt says it all: I do adore her.

Grace loves watching the Giants game with me.

Seriously.  This is what I see whenever I go into their room in the morning.  Grace wakes up with a smile on her face.  How did we get so lucky?

We're in a real pile.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Guest Post on Becoming Supermommy

I know that I wrote earlier this week that I'd be discussing the joys of two crawling babies.  Well I did.  You just won't be reading it here.  I actually wrote said article as a guest post for Becoming Supermommy.

She has a great blog and was kind enough to ask me to contribute to it.  So head on over and read what I had to write.  I hope you like it.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

It's the one thing I always come back to every week no matter what.  Twitter Machine!  You know you've been missing it over the last seven days.  And why wouldn't you?  You get to be as lazy as me.  There's no story.  No character development.  Nothing challenging whatsoever.  And you better believe that it isn't challenging for me either.  Basically my Twitter Machine posts are the reality tv of the internets. Only with more cartoon birds.


-I just want to start going to random weddings to tear up the dance floor. Can I get paid for that?
-It will be like Wedding Crashers except instead of trying to get ass, I'd be going simply to cut the proverbial rug.
-Hanging out with friends and drinking rum and cokes after day drinking at a wedding is a recipe for disaster. And good times.
-Luckily I listened to @erinsgirls and stopped drinking after my third rum and coke otherwise I would have certainly been sick.
-@erinsgirls had Chick-Fil-A for the first time on Saturday night. So delicious.
-Why is it that the time you want Chick-Fil-A the most is on Sundays…when they're closed? #hangoverfood
-Being a parent of twins got a lot more interesting now that they're both crawling. More to come on that topic in a full post.
-Already burnt out on the NFL and the lockout and it has only been over for a day.
-Is anyone actually surprised about Amy Winehouse dying? I was more surprised to learn she was only 27. #cocaineisahelluvadrug
-@erinsgirls mentioned Winehouse on Saturday and not knowing what happened I actually said "She's probably dead in a hotel room somewhere".
-She made her fame looking cracked out and singing "Rehab". These are what we call "warning signs"
-I don't care about your politics going to the White House and meeting the President would be so cool.
-You know what I hate? Racism.
-We saw the girls interact with other babies on Sunday. Little glimpses into the future.
-Is Chris Evans becoming a big star with Captain America? I loved him in Not Another Teen Movie and always thought he had star potential.
-Weeds has made my wife suspect everyone of dealing drugs. I'm sure that wasn't the show's intent.
-I need a vacation.  I haven't had an extended period off since the girls were born. I get one in August. Finally. -People being so angry with Netflix makes me laugh. It's $6. Bitching about it will change nothing.
-And now Ana has taken steps while holding onto the couch. #uhoh
-I've often wondered what the "real" Abe Froman, The Sausage King of Chicago, looked like. #saveferris
-If I've never said Happy Birthday to you in person, I'm probably not going to do it on Facebook. Unless you're really cool.
-Went to get Grace the other morning. She was in her crib, holding her stuffed bear and "talking" to it. Adorable.
-Was flipping through the channels the other day and @erinsgirls literally LOL'd at Jimmy Nuetron. #kidschangeyou
-I want to write a pop song with a random iPhone incoming text or voicemail tone. Just to screw with people.
-Are there any blogs that I should subscribe to on Google Reader? I love the blogs I follow. Just expanding the horizons.

That's all for this week's edition of Real Househusbands of Random County.  See you next week.

Monday, July 25, 2011

It's Wedding Season

This past weekend my brother got married.  So for those of you keeping track at home, I've watched my sister and brother both get married within the last two months (or 45 days if I'm being accurate).  I love the people that they've both married.  They both seem to understand our family, and they didn't even run away screaming.  Instead they've jumped right into the fray and bring sharp wit.  My brother-in-law treats my sister with so much respect and adoration.  He loves to have a good time and brings out the fun in her.  My new sister-in-law keeps my brother focused and gives him purpose.  They are both just what my sister and brother need.  They both accentuate and foster positive attributes that they already possess, and they fill in the gaps on the things where they need work.  Basically both these newlywed couples bring out the absolute best in one another.

To me that means they get "it".  They already understand that husband is his wife's biggest advocate.  A wife supports her husband and pushes him to be the best man he can be.  They don't love each other in spite of their differences, they love each other because of those differences.  A family needs the foundation of a loving relationship, and that starts with the parents.  Children need to see relationships that work, and their parents will always be the best example for them (or at least the most prevalent).  In that regard my brother and sister knocked it out of the park.

They're going to be great examples for their children because they so obviously love the people that they've married.  But it goes beyond that.  Their children are also going to see that we should seek out someone that makes us better.  They'll know that a spouse (or significant other for those that don't believe in the whole marriage thing) should not only love you but also challenge you.  He or she should make you laugh every day because what is life without laughter?  You should constantly be reminded of how wonderful life is because you found that someone.  They'll know that you should never be afraid or ashamed of your love.  These are examples you give to your children, and I can tell that this will never be an issue for my sister and brother.

I'm glad to welcome the newest members of our family.  I welcome cousins for my little ones to play with and grow up together (no pressure).  I love that our family continues to grow.  I grew up with one brother and two sisters.  I now have three brothers and four sisters.

I've got to tell you, I love weddings.  I can be my normal sappy self.  Good food.  Seeing family and friends.  Usually drinking a little too much and staying up way too late.  And dancing.  Lots and lots of dancing.  So much dancing that the drinking is more about replenishing fluids and less about getting drunk.  There is no doubt in my mind that the people at The Men's Warehouse hate when I'm renting a tux.  Not because it will be returned on late.  More because I'm going to sweat from all the dancing.  It's really a shame at the end of the night when it's time for the goodbye hugs because I wouldn't want to come near me.  But I just can't help myself.  I love to dance and have a good time that much

Thursday, July 21, 2011

You Down With OCD?

I always give my wife a hard time for all the things that make her crazy.  I don't think I'm being too harsh.  She has even written about it in the past, so it's not as if this is some undiscovered country or secret shame.

While I don't hesitate to point out how nuts she is from time to time,  I know that her craziness isn't an affliction that affects her and her alone.

As a side note, here is a pro-tip from a husband that knows better: Never drop a "You're crazy" or "You're nuts" on your wife or significant other during an argument.  You'll never win once you go that route.  It is up there with "Calm down" on the list of things to never say to your significant.  You may think it all day long (and trust me you will…often), but never utter the words.  Because then whatever you're arguing about takes a back seat to you belittling her.  It is classic misdirection.  I sometimes think women are emotional and crazy during arguments just so we'll say those words and open ourselves up to having to defend what we said instead of what we were arguing about in the first place.  Not only that, but you better be ready for her to continue to bring it up constantly.  I don't know what the statute of limitations is for women letting go of stupid stuff you say, but it is somewhere between 20 years and an eternity.

The point of this is to not kick knowledge to the newlyweds and men of the world.  It is more about examining my own OCD tendencies and accepting that everyone is a little bit crazy.

So on to my ticks:
  • I bite my nails while watching TV or reading something interesting.  But I hate when my nail is little bit jagged, so I bite away until it is as smooth as I can get it with my teeth alone.  Why not just use clippers and file them?  Pretty inconvenient to do while holding a book, laptop or Kindle.  Stupid question.
  • I've noticed that I almost always start this process with the pinkie finger on my right hand.  I can stop without taking care of the nails on all my fingers, but I have to make sure the corresponding finger on my other hand has been taken care of before stopping.
  • I always (and I'm saying ALWAYS) put my socks and shoes on the same way.  Left sock to right sock to left shoe to right shoe.  That is the order, and I may not deviate from it.
  • There is system to how I load the dishwasher.  It bothers me when it is not done my way.  To the point that I will complain when someone else does it for me incorrectly and will undo their work and reload it myself.  Yes, you read that correctly.  I complain when someone else has done a job for me, and I'll go back and redo it to get it right.  This system is a way to help future me do the unloading my way.
  • Every time I drive into San Francisco, I hold my breath through the tunnel on Treasure Island.  It helps the Giants win, right?
  • I always set my alarm clock for even numbers like 5:20am.
  • I also hate the volume on my car stereo or tv to be anything other than an even number.  For example a Spinal Tap concert wouldn't work for me since it goes to 11.

These are just a few of my OCD tendencies.  What things do you do either consciously or subconsciously that others might consider crazy?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

Apparently this Twitter Machine fad isn't going away.  Or maybe Google will just figure out a way to create their own version and call it Googer+.  They could make it invite only to give a false sense of exclusivity, so people think they're a part of some secret society.  You know like a secret society that everyone knows about?  Anyway I'm not quite sure what I'm even complaining about anymore.  Apparently I hate the Twitter Machine and Google+, so theres that.  I will break off this tangent and get into my fake Tweets.

-I'm all for the US of A, but I'm just not entertained by women's sports
-I will say that penalty kicks deciding something so big irks me. May as well flip coins to decide it.
-So sick of people who talk in buzz words. So disingenuous but it is everywhere in business.
-We need to start thinking outside the box about paradigm shifts.
-I wish the first season of The Walking Dead lived up to the potential of the pilot. Season 2 may still get it right.
-My brother is having a baby girl. I love that we'll have cousins that are so close in age.
-I'm always reminded of why I love the weekends so much.
-Grace drooling on my face while Ana crawled up onto my stomach was the moment on Sunday.
-Watching Weeds on Instant Queue. I don't know what to think about Mary-Louise Parker's character.
-I hate when someone constantly makes the same mistakes without learning from them or suffering any consequences. Which is her character.
-I also like snarky, sarcastic people. Which is also her character.  Hence the confusion.
-In a related story, the song "Little Boxes" will never be out of my head.
-The Franchise on Showtime is very good. A little rushed but an excellent inside look at the Giants.
-When you get married, it's always we. Like We need to spend less even when you're not the guilty party.
-My wife has mom's night out with the twin group. Is there a dad's night out?
-Cool nights will always make hot days worth it.
-If I give you something, you should at the very least say Thank You. That is common courtesy. Well not-so-common anymore.
-So long since we've gone to fro yo. I need a fix. Can't wait until the girls can walk there with us.
-@erinsgirls told me yesterday that we're seeing The Help in the theater. Seems like a sitting on the couch movie.
-We're planning another "reunion" weekend for Erin and her family friends. The planning alone is fun, so the weekend should be epic.
-I would always tell Ana how strong she was while in the NICU. Erin told her that the other day. Made me tear up.
-The Franchise has however made me less hateful towards Barry Zito. I don't know if I should be happy or sad about this.
-Grace has now joined her sister in the ranks of crawlers. Heaven help me.

That's all for this week.  I'll be putting the Twitter Machine on snooze until next Tuesday.  Check back then for my fake tweets.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Failure to prepare...

Erin and I have been making a conscious effort to go to church more since Grace and Ana were born.  I have to say that it is not easy.  And you may be thinking "Oh they must be such a handful while you're there."  That surprisingly isn't the case.  The girls have actually always been pretty well-behaved when it comes to mass (knock on wood).  It is more about the preparation and the ability to wake up in time.

Life with twins isn't nearly as hard as I'd imagined.  It is just different than I thought it would be.

I thought they would wake each other up at night, and that would keep us up at all hours.  I feared they'd both want attention at the same time, and I'd have to choose one over the other.  I worried they'd be all over the place and hard to keep track of.  Those things have happened a few times, but it hasn't been nearly as constant as I'd thought.  Maybe it's just because we've been blessed with good babies, or maybe they are just saving up all their acting out for later on.  Either way these aren't the difficulties with which we have dealt.

The real problem is getting them and ourselves ready.

We are rarely on time any more.  No matter how much prep time we give ourselves, we always seem to be a few minutes behind.  We always seem to be rushing out the door immediately after getting them dressed or feeding them.  There just never seems to be enough minutes in the day when we have to get somewhere by a certain time.  There is always one more thing to pack, one more bottle to make, one more diaper to change, one more spit-up to wipe away.    That is the secret shame of a parent of twins: constant tardiness.  As a person who believes that 5 minutes early is on time and on time is late, this KILLS me.  There are many times where not leaving the house is the easiest thing to do.  Like screw this, we don't need to get you ready for church.  Play on the floor some more.  So there were many Sundays over the last few months when going to church became an afterthought.  It just seemed like too much work.  Too much prep.

But that of course is the easy way to deal with things, and we don't want to teach our girls to always take the path of least resistance.  Sometimes you have to do things that you may not want to do or that seem like a lot of effort.  I'd definitely prefer a path of least resistance.  Could I get one of those?  Something where I don't have to work and get rewarded?  Unfortunately we weren't born with silver spoons in any orifice, so that ain't happening.  But it is a good lesson for Grace and Ana.  Doing what is hard now may lead to an even easier path down the road.  Plus the sense of fulfillment always outweighs the desire to be lazy (at least that's what we'll teach them because being lazy is pretty fantastic).

So I love that we're trying to be more active in our church if only because it gives us a reason to go each week.  Erin has signed up to be a reader.  We've joined the baptism team (basically we teach the class and help during the actual baptisms).  Most importantly we get to do these things as a couple/family.  Of course it gets hard putting Ana in her dress as she rolls and tries to crawl away.  And I definitely feel the eyes on me as Grace screeches during a quiet time in mass.  I worry how we'll be able to attend to them when we're coordinating a baptism.  I have no idea how we'll handle it when they're walking.  It doesn't take away from how good it feels to be there.  I feel like a part of something bigger as people from this community tell us how beautiful our girls are or comment on how much they've grown in the past few months.  I love how both of them squeal during songs as if they want to join the choir.  It's adorable how they recognize their mom's voice while she is doing her reading.

These things make all the preparation and work leading up to mass (or any outing for that matter) worth it.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Kids (Don't) Eat Free

I saw this story the other day about a restaurant in Monroeville, PA that has done something pretty drastic: They will no longer allow children under the age of six into their restaurant.

Since I can't help myself from going off on a tangent, Monroeville might sound familiar.  It was the setting of the original Dawn of the Dead.  For those that don't know (and shame on you if you don't), Dawn of the Dead is one of the great zombie movies of all time.  Scary, political, heavy social commentary, very dark humor.  Basically it is a classic, and any movie fan or horror aficionado should rent it or throw it on the Netflix Queue.  The remake from Zack Snyder was also pretty solid, but it didn't have the same themes as the original.  All I could think of while reading this article was "How far is this restaurant from the mall?" and "Are the doors and windows secure or will the zombies come in through the kitchen?"

But I digress.

I told my wife about the article, and we had very differing opinions about it.  This really surprised me.
You may think that I'd be calling this restaurant out now that I'm a father of two beautiful little girls.  It may seem like I'd hate it for discriminating against me and my family simply because my kids haven't reached a certain point on the calendar.  I think I've discussed before how Erin and I would take the girls in their car seats to the Mexican restaurant near our house as a way to get out of the house every once and awhile.  This no doubt would lead you to believe that I hate what this restaurant owner has done.  You'd be wrong.  I actually love it.

Firstly it isn't my place to tell him how to run his restaurant.  If he doesn't want to serve kids because he feels that they're too loud and he doesn't want to deal with them, more power to him.  It is his right to run his restaurant however he pleases.  That is the joy of being American.  We have the right to run a business pretty much however we want (except when it comes to discriminatory hiring).  You don't have to agree with it, but it isn't going to change his business model.

My wife doesn't like it.  She thinks the guy is discriminating against parents.  That he is making a choice to anger every person with kids and cutting himself off from a lot of potential business.  That we should have a choice to go to any restaurant that we please whether we want to bring our kids or not.  That is true.  We SHOULD have the choice.

The problem with her argument is that we wouldn't take our girls to a nice restaurant at this point for many reasons.  I think she'd agree that taking them to a nice steakhouse would make little to no sense.  That isn't the type of environment that caters to small children, and we recognize that.  But oftentimes I feel like there are many more parents that don't.  They lack that awareness.

The term ugly American came from this.  We oftentimes don't think of or care about how we affect the people around us.  There are repercussions to our actions, but we don't feel like we have to deal with them.  I didn't like how I had to change the way I acted while Erin and I were abroad, but I didn't have much of a choice.  I didn't want to carry on that moniker of being the ugly American.  Well really Erin cared much more than I did, but I knew I had to make that sacrifice for her.  I had to do what I could to fit into the culture of these other countries.  But not everyone is cognizant of this.

People for the most part have grown more and more entitled in this country.  We have become a "You can't tell me what to do" culture.  So people think that they can do whatever they want.  In a certain sense it is true.  We as Americans have the freedom to say and do whatever we please.  I don't know at what age it becomes a part of our vernacular, but I hate when people say "It's a free country" as if that can end any argument and gives you a pass for anything.  Freedom is a great thing to have, but these freedoms have led many to become obnoxious and entitled pricks.

And this relates back to parents.  If you're a douche before you have kids, you're probably a giant douche after.  It isn't as if there is a magical switch that takes your douchey tendencies and turns them off when a kid pops out.  In fact it oftentimes gets worse.  There are many people out there that approach life as if they are the only person in the world.  They can do whatever they want and continue to do so even with kids.  They are the types that don't discipline their kids because "hey it's a free country and I don't want to stifle Jermajesty" (or whatever other stupid name they pulled out of a hat).  They're also the type that aren't willing to make a sacrifice like not going out to dinner.  This restaurant owner doesn't want to deal with these people, so he's cutting it off for his sake and the sake of the other diner's.

Now you may be thinking: "What's the difference between the owner's freedom that you love and the people's freedom that you hate?"  Nothing really.  And I accept that I may be contradicting myself.  That is the duality of me.  But the thing is the people with kids still have the choice not to go to his restaurant even when they have a babysitter.  They can deny him their business simply because of how he runs his eatery.  That's how things work here.

Either way I applaud the guy for making a tough choice and telling bad parents that they suck.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Twitter Machine Tuesday

Twitter Machine Tuesday is back with a vengance.  I have a lot of thoughts rumbling around in my head, and I'm here to share them with the world.  The world of course being my tens of readers.

-A What to Expect when You're Expecting movie? Seriously?
-My wife became sort of hippieish when we had the girls. Making her own baby food is something I'd never expect from her.
-I love people that kill conversations. Sitting off to the side and adding 2 cents when you already had exact change.
-I agree. Ed Hardy screams "I'm a gigantic douche. Everyone look how douchey I am!"-Add that to the list of guys who my daughters will be too good for: Ed Hardy guys.
-Rest of the list: alcoholics, druggies, clowns (pro or amateur),  porn stars, Dodger fans and Charlie Sheen.
-I just don't understand why everyone is so crazy about the Harry Potter movie.
-Ditto for Twilight
-I'm not a big fan of the Eagles. The band not the football team. Just think all their songs sound the same.
-My wife makes the most amazing garlic bread. Basically just bread with butter and garlic broiled in the oven until toasted.
-Ana really has become a bit of a bully.  She is constantly stealing things and scratching her sister. Also she is a baby and doesn't really get consequences yet.
-You should go check out this contest that Kim is running on her blog. It decreases my chances of winning if you enter, but you should anyway.
-Memories by Michelle has some phenomenal photos, and it's a prize anyone should want to win.
-The Home Run Derby is a spectacle that is pretty entertaining. Unfortunately it goes hand in hand with Chris Berman. Ugh.
-The MLB All Star Game is the best of all star game of all the professional sports. Period.
-Bud Selig however is a gigantic douche and the worst commissioner in sports. Who cares if the game "matters"? We just want to see good games.
-End baseball-related tweets on my fake Twitter Machine
-You know what I don't understand? Chinese
-We're teaching a baptism class for the first time tonight. @erinsgirls asked if I wanted to do it 50-50. Yeah right. She can drive.
-I never know how to finish these things...

Monday, July 11, 2011

Bye Bye Baby!!!


We finally took Grace and Ana to their first Giants game.

And they survived.  Not only that but they actually had a little bit of fun.  Or at least that's what I've convinced myself while they sat on my lap and watched the game with me.  Actually Ana was watching the television over our heads, but we were still together at the game.

You have to understand how big of a step this was.  I love baseball.  I especially love the Giants, and I've repeatedly reminded Erin that they were my first love.  I obviously love Erin and my daughters more than the Giants or baseball, but it is an inescapable part of my life.  And the greatest thing for me is finding a way to bring all my loves together.  I've taught Erin about the game and team that I love which only made my love of the game more strong.  Now she loves it almost as much as I do.  I want to bring my girls into this environment.

We actually had an opportunity earlier in the season to take them, but Erin chickened out and we didn't go through with it.  I think that part of the problem was that we had too long to think about it.  We kept worrying about the logistics of it all.  "Did we have enough people to help out?"  "Can we handle being out at a game all day?"  "When will we go?"  "Will we leave early if we need to?"  It is a pretty big deal to go to a sporting event.  You have three plus hours outside of your element trying to care for the little people that need your help to do everything.  There is no other way to describe it other than intimidating and scary.

This trip being thrown together so last second was actually a blessing in disguise.  We couldn't think about it because there wasn't enough time to get in our own heads about it.  We were already going to spend the weekend in the Bay Area, so we asked and lucked into some tickets for the sold out game on the 4th of July.  We didn't know where we'd be sitting.  We hoped for a place in the shade, but we feared we'd have to be out in the sun all day.

We totally lucked out though and ended up in a suite.  It was the best possible scenario.  We were in a shaded, temperature-controlled environment that was close to bathrooms for changing and food.  We didn't have to get up and get our food and beverages every inning.  We had a place to keep the diaper bag and stuff for them.  It totally worked out, and the first of many Giants games for me and my girls.

They're going to be fans, and I don't know that they really have a choice at this point.  I named one of them after a player on the Giants for God's sake.  Erin got one of the championship bricks with their names on it for Father's Day, so I don't see how they're going to get out of it.  They will root for the same team as their daddy.  Maybe they will only root for the Giants because I do.  Maybe they just want to be like their dad, and I'd have no problem with that.  If that's the case, it means watching games with my girls for years to come.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

1000 Words

Haven't done a post like this in a long time.  I bet you've all forgotten what I look like.  Or you've at least wondered how my girls look over the last couple of weeks.  So I'll get right down to it and give you what you came here for.

I wrote about it before, but I had worked on a pretty large fireworks show for the 4th of July.  This is just to hammer home the point that it was a big show.  This is a 10-inch shell.  It is essentially filled with explosives, and it only has one purpose: to explode into pretty colors and patterns.  It is also quite intimidating when you have to load these particular big boys.  You can feel them in your chest when they go off, but damn are they impressive as hell.

This is me and brother in law right before the show.  Just looking like macho men and ready to do some clean-up after the show.  It ended up being a very long day.

Ana has learned new skills.  She is actually crawling now.  I can't turn my back on her at all because she is all over the place.  This is one of her many skills.  She is constantly climbing on things.  Here she is trying to entertain her sister.  She rocks Grace and tries to drool all over Grace's feet.  Grace seems to get a kick out of it too.

We went to San Francisco over the holiday weekend.  We took the girls to Market Square and all around the city.  Ana got pretty tuckered out and slept on my back.  Pretty adorable if I may say so myself.

My gift idea for Erin was pretty clever, but I couldn't do it since apparently we can't afford big gifts anymore.  I thought I was pretty clever to do the KitchenAid with multiple flours thing.  The whole theme for year four anniversary gifts is flowers and fruit.  Erin made me chocolate-covered strawberries.  I thought I had the flower thing covered.

We went to a nice restaurant for our anniversary.  We got a babysitter and everything.  I enjoyed some fantastic wine and Erin got to drink cosmos which is her favorite adult beverage.  The food was great and the time spent with my wife was fantastic.  You'll notice the book in the background of our drinks.  That is a book that I bought for us to keep track of our life story together.  We write in it for each of our anniversaries and any big events in our life.

I have some more pictures, but they're going to be apart of their own post later this week.  Thanks for reading.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Four Years

Today my wife and I celebrate our four year anniversary.  But that is only the time since we've been married.  We just were discussing the other day that it is so strange celebrating wedding anniversaries when you've been a couple for so long.

I've actually known Erin for over 11 years, and she has been my best friend almost all 11 of those.  We met in a high school musical, and I knew from the moment I saw her that I wanted to know everything there was to know about her.  I knew that we would spend the rest of our lives together.  I just had the inconvenience of a girlfriend at the time.  It didn't keep me from wanting to date this fun, adorable girl that sat on my desk after performances and sat in her car listening to music during rehearsals.

When we did start dating a few months later, I never wanted to spend a day without her.  Although the logistics of that particular wish didn't really work out what with our long-distance relationship, we still spent as much time together as possible.  I remember what she ate on our first official date (enchiladas).  I remember our first kiss on a midnight street (much like the David Gray song).  We got to know each other and our families.  That still didn't scare either of us away.

We moved away from one another (Erin to Spain, me to Colorado).  It didn't deter us.  We both knew that we were meant to be together.  We didn't let the distance keep us apart (HA!).

When I moved back, I wasted no time getting a ring.  I knew that I wanted Erin to be my wife.  She may have wanted it even more than me.  I asked her to marry me overlooking Donner Lake in Truckee.  When I say "overlooking" I mean that we were above the lake, but we couldn't see anything with the copius amounts of fog.  It is her happy place, and I'll never be able to walk that trail again without thinking of that foggy morning when she stood on a rock and turned around to see me holding out the ring.  I didn't even have to ask.  She was jumping off the rock hugging me in 1.2 seconds.

Our wedding day is known in some circles as The Party of the Century.  It really was a great time and everyone had a blast.  I remember it more for how breathtakingly beautiful Erin was in her wedding dress.  As much as I was head over heels in love with her for the years leading up to that moment, I was absolutely hers from that moment on.  I couldn't believe how lucky I was, and all I could do was cry tears of joy during the vows.  After a night of dancing and fun, Erin wanted a hamburger and french fries.  Let me tell you what devotion is: Trying to find a fast food joint that was open after 1am to get your new wife french fries because that is all she wants on her wedding night.

Since then my life has been beautiful.  There were some growing pains at first, but I can't complain about a thing because it was all a part of our journey.  The good times have always outweighed the bad because those times were spent together.

The day we got married has become one day in a series of greatest days of my life.  It wasn't the start like so many people look at wedding days.  It was a continuation of the greatest love story I'll ever know.  It is just one of many fantastic days in my life with Erin.  My own personal Mount Rushmore: The day we met, the day we got engaged, our wedding day, the day I found out she was pregnant, when we found out we were having twins and the day Grace and Ana were born.

So I do find it strange that we hit that reset button as if nothing came before the wedding day.  I celebrate it because it's fun to do so, and it signifies one more day of our story.  I love my wife.  I love that she loves me right back.  I love what we have done together over the last 11 years.  We have created something so much greater than either of us.

Erin, being with you has made my life so much better and richer than it would have been being alone.  You make me laugh every day.  You are kind and supportive and oftentimes have more faith in me than I do in myself.  You have given me the gift of undying love every day that we've known each other, and that gift has led to a better day than every day before it.  You gave me two beautiful girls, and you are just as good at being a mom as you are at everything else.

I love you now, then and for the rest of our lives.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


I've come to the conclusion that infants don't make for a very interesting blog.

Don't get me wrong.  I love being a dad.  I love the new experiences that every day brings.  Ana is now army crawling everywhere, so you can never turn your back for more than a second.  Grace is saying "DA DA DA" and "BA BA BA".  Now all she has to do is learn how to say "GA GA Ooh LA LA" to become a terrible pop singer.  It amazes me that they are able to learn this stuff.  It isn't like either Erin or I ever actually taught them this stuff, yet they seem to learn something new daily.  Like it is in their DNA.

I've also learned more and more about myself and my wife during this experience.  I now know that changing diapers on babies that would rather be rolling around is a frustrating challenge.  It is also quite rewarding when they finally stop long enough to snap the diaper cover back up.  I've learned that my baby nails and teeth are sharp.  Sharp like I feel the need to get a tetanus shot afterwards.  But heaven forbid complaining about it.  My wife will always have the one-up of biting during breastfeeding.

But is this all that interesting?  Do you really want to read about how much I love my life with my twins and wife?  Nobody watches a movie or reads book where nothing actually happens (I guess that's pretty much every Richard Linklater film, so maybe people do).

We just haven't had a lot of issues with our girls.  They've been pretty *GASP* easy.  I know that I'm supposed to complain about how hard it has been with twin babies, but I don't ever want to take them for granted or try to make people feel sorry for me.  I also don't want to lie.  I oftentimes find that life is only as easy or hard as you make it for yourself.  A person who thrives on drama will complain about how crappy his or her life is, so you'll pay attention and make him or her feel like a hero.  That isn't me.

Maybe it's just because I need to be a better writer, but I'd rather they just do all the work for me.  I can't wait until they start saying ridiculous things.  That would make things easier.  How about walking and getting into compromising positions?  That would be awesome.  Maybe eat a Lego or something.  Let's add some spice to this blog because I'm certainly not bringing it.

Time to pull your weight.  All 32 pounds of it...combined.

Twitter Machine Tuesday

I know that I haven't posted anything in a week, but I don't apologize for it.  It was a long holiday weekend with numerous activities.  I'm sure you were all wondering aloud "What the hell am I going to read while I enjoy my fifth beer while exploding stuff and eating too much food that is terrible for me?"  Or you got over it and continued on with your life.  I don't blame you.  But I didn't want to be completely out of your consciousness, so I'm back with my lazy post that I don't have to plan too much in advance.

Once again these are the thoughts I'd share if I ever signed up for a Twitter Machine.

-Hot dogs are not good for you, but damn do they hit the spot on a hot day. Or any day.
-Never underestimate the kindness inside people. We always give when we can.
-People who prefer hot weather are ridiculous. Explain to me how 100 on a thermostat is fun. Stupid.
-Coming to the bay area to escape the heat didn't really work out. It was hot everywhere.
-Al Gore was right.  This was rather inconvenient.
-I found out that I really enjoy wiring fireworks shows.
-Also seeing them go off from less than 100 yards away and explode over your head is awesome.
-The Girls finally went to their first Giants game on the Fourth of July. They were very good and as always were a big hit.
-It remains to be seen if they'll bring luck to the team, but so far off to a bad start girls.
-I love America, beer and fireworks, but I hate hot weather.  Maybe enough to offset the Ameribeersplosions.
-Children are the greatest gift I've ever received, so it makes it that much harder to understand what we all know Casey Anthony did.
-Ana cried after the Padres scored. She just wanted her team to win.
-I had an awesome idea for an anniversary present that fits with the traditional 4th anniversary theme of flowers and fruit. But not happening.
-A KitchenAid with four different kinds of flours. Awesome, right?
-I can't believe I just saw a commercial for 911 being for emergencies only. Are there that many stupid people?
-My wife is now dropping Liz Lemon-isms without even realizing it.
-I've never caught a foul ball or home run ball during a game.  I have however caught a ball during batting practice.
-There have been a lot of baseball related Fake Tweets in this post. Get over it.
-Any suggestions on where my wife and I should go for our anniversary dinner? We are going to get a babysitter and everything.
-Are there video arcades anymore? I used to love blowing quarters on Street Fighter and the like.
-I've had dreams that have made me irrationally hate people. Don't say I'm a bad father in my dream, damnit.

Checking out for this week.  But I'll be fake tweeting next week for you enjoyment or indifference.