The chronicles and ramblings of a stay-at-home father raising his three beautiful girls, Anya Rose, Caitlin Rose and Reegan Rose.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Why?!?!?

After writing my last blog, we're on a 4 day streak of children waking up in the middle of the night.  The usual culprit is Caitlin.  She generally wakes up screaming for daddy, whining that she lost her blankie or her pillow.  It only takes a minute or two to calm her down and put her back to bed.  Anya, on the other hand, is a little trickier.  She doesn't often wake up in the middle of the night, but when she does it's usually because she's sick.  So when she came down last night around 2:00am, I planned for the worst.  I asked her if she was feeling okay, and aside from an aching chin she said she was fine.  An aching chin?  Who the hell has an aching chin?  I'm not even sure a chin can ache.  But that was her story and she was sticking to it.  Apparently the only cure for an aching chin is to lay in bed with ones father.  I decided it would be best to go up to Anya's room so Alicia could get a restful nights sleep (husband bonus points).

After spending two sleepless hours in Anya's bed, I decided I should start saying some prayers.  The first person I prayed for is Anya's future spouse.  That guy is going to get more than he bargined for.  Sleeping with her is like sleeping next to a dancing James Brown, without the"Hit Me!'s and sexually transmitted diseases.  She's got a wicked Jimmy Leg paired with a unique body twitch that seemed to occur just as I was about to fall asleep.  When you add the fact that she snores like a trucker, you've got one tough sleeping partner.

By 4:00am I was able to sneak back downstairs and snuggle back into my own bed.  But by that time, Alicia had laid claim to 3/4th of the bed.  'When I'm gone, she sleeps diaganol in my bed, when I'm there she sleeps lengthwise..." (random Phish quote).  The good news to last night is that we recently purchased a coffee maker and a few cups of Joe can fix even the most unsettling nights of sleep.


Tip of the Day:  Be careful what you allow your siblings to teach your children.  Kari taught Anya this really cool trick ; twirling her hair.  Anya now attempts to make 'knots' in her hair to be like her aunt.  Before I know it she'll be losing cell phones and using the 'f' word.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Another Schmidty Day

Autumn has arrived at the Schmidt house and I must confess, I'm loving it!  Trips to the park are short and sweet and Brother Sun is calling it a day just after 6:30pm.  7:30 bedtime, here we come!  All three girls get about 12 hours of sleep a night and Reegan gets a two hour nap mid-day.  I know what you're thinking, why does God give such an asshole such wonderful sleepers?  Apparently good things do happen to bad people (write a chapter about that Kushner!).  Our nighttime routine is simple and consistant:

6:45 - Get into bath tub.
6:47 - Apply soap to arms, legs, bellies, and butt butts.
6:49 - Convince Anya not to bogard all bathtub toys.
6:51 - Shampoo hair into unicorns.
6:53 - Rinse the soap out of Anya and Reegan's hair.  Dry them off and place them in the hair combing and dressing station (aka the living room).
6:54 - 7:00- Attemp to rinse Caitlin's hair.  If unsuccessful, dry her soapy hair with a towel and change out of your bathtub soaked clothes.
7:00 - 7:05 - Give Reegan a sippy cup of milk and place in her crib.
7:05 - 7:15 - Convince Anya that we will be going to bed in 5 and 5 (an adaptation of Chuck Wolery's 2 and 2)
7:15 - 7:30 - Carry the two big girls up to bed.  Say prayers and go to sleep.

That gives Alicia and I a good 2 hours of peace and quiet, most of which is spent cleaning the house and doing  the laundry (neither of which is slang for 'how's your father' or the old 'jiggery-pokery').  Not the most exciting night life, but I wouldn't have it any other way.   

Tip of the Day:  Can't train your one year old to use the bathroom?  Train your four year old to change diapers.  I've never been such a proud parent...


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Secrets of life continued...

Secret number three - Don't have sex before marriage.

I don't want to come off as some sort of prude, but seriously, what good comes from premarital sex?  I personally don't buy into the whole "why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free" argument.  Have you ever talked to a dairy farmer?  You think you get the milk for free?  You don't think cows need to eat, or have bedding, or require hours of labor to get the milk out of that cow?  I 'bought the cow' 7 years ago and still have to buy the milk!  I have to clean the house, bathe the girls, and wash the car, just for a chance to get a few sips! 

No, I think sex should wait because I've seen too many people's lives severly affected by poor decisions made in the bedroom.  As a youth minister I heard dozens of kids brag about their sexual escapades, but when we talked one-on-one, none of them felt good about their decisions.  Life is hard enough as it is, who needs all that extra stress to worry about!  Unwanted pregnancies, hurt feelings, STD's; no thanks, I'll live with the virgin jokes, thank you very much.  I mean HIV and AIDS?

"That ain't like the good ol' days when venereal disease was simple.
In the good old days, you got gonorhea, your dick would hurt, go get a shot, cleared right up...
And now they got AIDS, that just kills motherfuckers...

What's next?  You stick your dick in and just explode?"
-Eddie Murphy, Delirious

I may be hard for you to believe, but the only person I've ever had sex with is my wife.  I know what your thinking, and yes, I did have to fight the women off with a stick.  How could an Adonis like myself keep from getting laid?  I'm not sure how I did it, but I've always known that I wanted to wait.  And I have no regrets.

Secret number four - Marry your best friend.

Most people spend less then 1% of their lifetime having sex.  Why be involved with someone just to get some action?  Sure it sounds nice to have a relationship with Jenna Jamison, but what do you talk about the other 99% of the time you're together?  "So...you shot Saving Ryan's Privates today, huh... That sounds...rewarding..."

I'm so glad I married my best friend (and lucky for me my best friend is smokin' hot).  I love spending time with my wife.  While it is fun getting it on, I equally enjoy working out with her at the gym, going for bike rides with the kids, and cuddling together while watching TV.  Hopefully someday when my Roses are in their teens, they'll look back at their dad's posts and take to heart some of my advice. 

Tip of the day - Take the amount of time you plan to devote to your first child and divide it in half.  That way when the other 2 children come along, the oldest doesn't expect your undivided attention.  

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Secrets of life

The other day I got a call from one of my former students.  We chatted for a while and he made a comment that really struck me.  He said "Man you've got it all!  Someday I hope to grow up to be just like you."  While I challenged him to set slightly more demanding life goals (that's like aspiring to be ditch digger), I did think about his comment and thought I would share a few thoughts on what it takes to have a happy and successful life.

Secret Number One - Give people the benefit of the doubt.

While many people may think I'm a sucker, and admitedly, more often than not I am, throughout my life I have always tried to pause before judging the actions of others.  Growing up with a blind father has taught me a lot. 

My dad is legally blind, but still has 10% vision in his right eye.  While that doesn't seem like much, it's just enough for my dad to pretend like he has 20/20 vision.  Never in my life have I seen him walk with a cane (despite the fact that he has been repeatedly encouraged to do so).  It's always interesting to see the types of responses he gets while walking in areas of heavy foot traffic.  Since he has no vision in his left eye, he is constantly sholder-butting people and giving people flat-tires (you know when somebody steps on your shoe and it almost comes off...Annoying huh?).  Immediately people turn to him with looks of discust and anger.  What kind of asshole walks around pushing women and trying to kick peoples shoes off?  The truth is my dad is one of the nicest guys in the world and people just don't understand the whole story.  In general, I try to stop myself before passing judgement and recognize that I may not have all the information to come to a conclusion. 

Secret Number Two - Ask for help when you can't do it yourself.

That's what she said.

But seriously, it's true.  Most people seem to have a hard time asking for help. Why?  Nobody has all all the answers.  Why not ask?  What's the worst that can happen?  The person says 'no'?  Big whoop! 

A few months ago I started going to AA.  I know what you're thinking, 'AA, really?  I didn't think you were that much of a drunk!'  Even my wife thinks I'm crazy for going.  But at this point in my life, with three little girls at home, I really don't care what other people think.  The only requirement for attending AA is the desire to stop drinking.  Enough said.  Before starting AA, I had a hard time saying no.  Everybody I know drinks; my family, my in-laws, my friends, my coworkers, EVERYONE!  When I would go out, I even if I didn't want to, I always seemed to end up putting down a couple of cold ones.  Finally I realized that I was going to need some help if I wanted to stay off the sauce.  One of my friends has always ranted and raved about how awesome AA has been for him, so one day I asked him if I could come along with him to a meeting.  What an amazing experience it was.  A group of 30 guys from all walks of life gathered each week to help each other become better human beings.  Who wouldn't want to be a part of that?  Within the group we have business executives, mechanics, IT professionals, engineers, cops, you name it!  This group of stangers has taken a personal interest in my life and they sincerely care about my well being.  They have helped encourage me to stick to my beliefs and keep off the booze, even when everyone else thinks it's no big deal.

Nobody's perfect and the sooner we accept that, the sooner we'll have the opportunity to better our own life.  Never be afraid to reach out.

That's enough for now, but there will be more to come...

Tip of the Day:  If your daughter gets a scratch under her nose, don't suggest her to put a band-aide on it.  Especially if you live in a prodominantly Jewish neighborhood.


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

I didn't forget...

I know I haven't been writing as much as I usually do, but I've had a busy couple weeks.  With volleyball season in full swing, I've been reffing a couple nights a week and haven't been able to spend as much time with the family as I'm used to.  Alicia has been putting the girls to bed by herself at least three nights a week and until earlier last week, I was going to bed early since I wasn't feeling well.  I'm feeling much better now, thanks for asking.  It turns out the doctors think I had a small kidney stone that has since passed.  I don't recall passing it, but perhaps the fact that I am well endowed has something to do with that ;)

Anyway, life has been good at the Schmidt house.  No not good, great.  My whole family was in town this past week and we had an absolute blast!  Kelley and Nick (my sister and brother-in-law) flew in from Alaska with their three boys, James Brown, John John Bear, and Zack Attack (I love giving people nicknames, I feel it makes a relationship seem more personal and meaningful.  Zit Face Charlie never agreed with me though.)  My younger sisters Katie, with her two kids, Jack and Gracie, and Kari also came in from Madison and Denver.  Having the whole crew together is a really special time.  It doesn't matter how long we've been away, whenever we're together we pick right up where we left off. 

And the Roses LOVE their cousins.  Anya loves bossing around the boys (though she does allow them to be 'Dad' when they play house).   Caitlin and John John Bear both have very independant personalities and tend to wander around independantly together (if that makes sense).  Reegan, Zack and Gracie don't really play, but I imagine they would if they understood what the hell was going on. 

Last weekend we celebrated Anya's 4th birthday at my parent's house.  Alicia's parents joined the party as well as Anya's cousin Kayidance.  We had a wonderful time picking apples and going for a hay ride.  For having 9 kids between 10 months and 5 years old, it wasn't even too chaotic.  Seriously.  My CPA wife even said so.

On Sunday Kelley, Nick and I ran the Twin Cities Marathon.  It was an absolutely gorgeous day to be running and I managed to finish with my fastest time of 4:57.  Everyone in the family was their to cheer me on and that made the day extra special to me. Never take for granted the people that you love.  If they can make something as painful and difficult as a marathon seem fun and exciting, you've got some special people around you!

Tip of the day:  If you're going to be a spectator in a marathon, here are a few ideas for signs you can hold to encourage the runners:

...Because 26.3 miles would be crazy.
Chuck Norris didn't run a marathon.
Run like you stole something.
Nipple chaffing turns me on (must be an attactive female to pull this one off)

And my personal favorite (which was held by someone outside a church)
Jesus hates pussies.