Friday, February 20, 2009

Fatherhood Follies, pt 1

Last weekend, I was happy to have spent a pretty good amount of time with my kids. Sometimes though, I don't think through far enough to the consequences of my actions/decisions around them.

One example happened when Lucas was pretending to be a policeman and was taking me to jail downstairs. Somehow I ended up laying down on my belly at the top of the stairs, then pulling myself down the top step until my body weight carried me forward, like over a roller coaster peak. Then I body surfed down the stairs by putting my hands out like Superman and making my body stiff like a board. It was pretty fun and the kids really got a kick out of it, asking me to "do it again" numerous times.

I didn't really think much of it, until I told Amanda about it at the dinner table, after which she heartily chastised me. Her fear is that next thing you know the kids will be hurtling themselves down the stairs to their demise. She has a valid point, too. Thankfully though, they have yet to try it themselves.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Almost (but not quite) Smooth Operator

In a previous post, I mentioned getting a cyst that was on the back of my head removed. Well, almost 2 months later there is still about a quarter sized bald spot there!

I have had several of these cysts removed before (they're just randomly occurring lumps), but I have never had a scar like this after getting them removed. This (and other factors about the procedure) leads me to believe that the doctor may have botched the job.

Anyway, I was in need of a hair cut again, but annoyed by what looks like a hole in my hair. So on Sunday evening I decided to just make the whole thing even. As you can see in the picture below, I set the clipper to its lowest possible setting and then went to town on my dome.

Needless to say that it has definitely been getting noticed. In fact, I don't think I've gotten this much attention since like, never! It's kind of fun. And seeing the kids get freaked out the next morning was pretty comical too.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Getting Girly for God

I help out with the middle school group, called Apex, at our church. Last Tuesday evening we were going to talk about relationships. So the woman who runs the children's ministry, Liz, had the idea that we could dress as the opposite gender and talk to the kids jokingly about what we're looking for in a boyfriend/girlfriend, but from a decidedly non-Christian (although still clean) perspective.

I actually had forgotten all about the idea until the Monday night before. Thankfully, Amanda helped put together my attire. Although she's only 5'4" (at best) and I'm 6', she had a maternity dress that was actually long enough for me to use! Sure, it was a little tight in the shoulders, but it worked. Add a few accessories, and viola! As you can see by the pictures below, I make a very ugly woman. However, I am thinking that this is a good thing.

Liz was L-dog. And I was Sophia (another woman who helps out with the kids picked the name, so I went with it).

Seeing the middle school kids' reaction was pretty funny. But seeing my kids' reaction was even better. They were eating dinner when I came downstairs in my female attire. I immediately assured them that it was a joke and only temporary. And after I left to go to church, they were laughing and told Amanda that "Daddy's funny".

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Multimedia Musing

I recently finished two new books. You can read the reviews for them here.


Music I'm currently inspired by and listening to, sometimes loudly and repeatedly:

Given Up by Linkin Park = I first heard this song on the trailer for the movie Crank 2. It's one of those songs that you just can't turn up loud enough. I love it! (Warning : a few f-bombs are dropped)

Gravity by Sara Barellis = This song reminds me a bit of Kissing You by Des'ree (from the Romeo and Juliet soundtrack). It's one of those songs that you want complete silence around you so you can really soak it up, and during her high note about 3/4 of the way though it will probably give you chills.

Her Morning Elegance by Oren Lavie = This is a peppy, fun song. The video is pretty darned cool too, made using stop motion animation. I'm dissapointed not to find the mp3 on yet though.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Valentines Day Introspection

Last night Amanda and I watched last week's episode of The Office (it aired after the Superbowl, but we just watched it online).

In it, Jim described his feelings about Pam to her dad, followed by her relaying them back (if you haven't seen it then hopefully that makes sense).

"He said that you told him how much you love me.
About how you feel when I walk into a room. That you've never doubted for a second that I'm the one that you want to spend the rest of your life with."

After I rolled my eyes at Jim's perfect ladies' man persona, it really made me think honestly about my feelings for Amanda. Do I feel that way? To be sure, the fact that I even have to ask myself that question really sucks.

Then I realized - wait a second, Jim and Pam are dating. I thought back to when Amanda and I were dating. For most of it, we were at different colleges that were four hours apart. So it was a semi-long distance relationship.

What I remember is that I couldn't wait to be with Amanda - it didn't matter what we were going to do, as long as we were together. We wrote tons of letters and sent each other little things in the mail to demonstrate our love for each other. I thought about her all of the time and looked forward with great longing to the times when we could be together. We talked for hours and hours on the phone and when we were together in person we still talked endlessly then too. Almost every minute together was joyous, and every goodbye was painful.

But what about now? Has it changed and if so then what would cause it? The answer is - life! We are so darned busy and have so many responsibilities. We're taking care of our jobs, our house, our cars, and more importantly (and more time consuming) - our kids. I still love her like crazy, but I just don't get the opportunity or the luxury to focus on her or even myself that much anymore. It's sad and it sucks, but that's just the way life is right now.

Thankfully though, there are still moments of conscious appreciation here and there. Going on the occasional date together reminds me of how much fun we have and how natural and carefree we feel around each other. Seeing her walking toward us from a store when I'm waiting for her in the car with the kids. Watching her talking to someone else from a distance at a party or a social gathering. Observing what a great mom she is, especially when she's acting silly/crazy/goofy with our children.

So it's not that I don't feel like Jim's character describes his romantic inclinations. It's just that I don't get to think about those feelings much anymore. I'm just not able to fully focus on her (or anyone else for that matter) these days, in this stage of life.

Now that I am taking the time to think about it though, I realize that Amanda is still my favorite person in the world to spend time with, she still captures my heart, and she's still the only valentine I've ever had. And I'm greatly looking forward to spending next Saturday (v-day 2009) with her on a date, without the kids and hopefully without life's distractions too, at least for a little while.

Oh yeah, and Jim can bite me, I'll bet I was way smoother than him when we were dating anyway - just ask Amanda. On second thought, maybe don't.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Weekend Update - 1/30/09

Weekends are so fleeting, as are most pleasant memories for that matter. So if it's an especially good couple of days then I'm going to blog about it, mainly as an assistance for remembrance.

Highlights from the weekend of 1/30/09 are:
  • Lucas' pre-school periodically has a family movie night in their gymnasium. They showed "Finding Nemo" on Friday. Michael O'Brien and his daughter Omara joined us too.

  • Saturday night was UFC94 - featuring Georges St. Pierre vs. BJ Penn.

    When we got to our usual sports bar though, there was only 1 tiny table left, and the view from it sucked (it was right under a high-mounted TV). Sure there were still plenty of seats, but the tables were all reserved by a few people at each one.

    Michael's friend called and told him that another small bar, Diamond Plate, was showing the fights too, so we went to check it out. The $5 cover sucked, and there were no more tables for 4 there either. But the door man noticed two tiny tables in crummy locations (in the corner and by the door), so he offered to move them and put them together in front of one of the TVs.

    So we ended up right in front of a high-def TV, all sitting on the same side of two tables. It felt like VIP seating, especially since everyone else who was watching that particular screen was behind us. The food wasn't quite as good as Mandango's, but it was still quite satisfactory.

    Oh yeah, and the fights were great too. GSP was dominant and Lyoto Machida had a great KO. The rest were all decisions, but good fights too.

  • Sunday was Superbowl 43. Our good friends, the Hughes family came over to hang out, eat dinner, and maybe watch the game a little too. It was really nice to see them and spend time with them again, the first time since they moved back here to Sacramento.

    For dinner, I grilled Salmon while Amanda made yellow rice, asparagus, and cake for both dessert and as a celebration for our roommate's birthday. And that was some really good salmon, let me tell you. Everyone, including the kids, enjoyed the meal tremendously.
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