Friday, April 27, 2012

Gramma came for a visit!

After having his son, my cousin Jeremiah told me how he finally understood what was so great about kids.  Until getting to watch his son then his daughter grow up from babies to toddlers to little kids, he never understood, "what all the hype was about".  It sounds absurd, but I couldn't agree more.  I knew I would one day like being a Dad and it would be great watching my kids grow, but the sheer joy and happiness they have brought into our lives is remarkable.  In mathematical terms, I'd say witbout hesitation, that the increase in smiles, giggles and sighs of joy have increased exponentially every day since their birth.  Even among the crying you can't seem to cure and the poops you never think you'll be able to clean that happen while dressed in a suit and tie.  

After so much worry, concern and heart-ache leading up to their birth, each day has easily been twice as good the one before.  The excitement of watching Ethan palm a ball for the first time was without comparison!  To see Ruthie's personality emerging as she tries to stand, balance herself, and fight to walk with fierce determination has been absolutely amazing to witness.  In our few hours of free time each night, like addicts waiting for their next fix, we scroll through pics and videos of the kids.  I think the sole reason facebook is offering their IPO is to fund the amount of memory upgrades they regularly need to hold all of Elissa's nightly picture and video uploads.

If the first ten months have been this great, I can't wait 'till they really start exploring their world around them with mud pies, skinned knees & tree climbing!  Bring it on, it only seems to keep getting better.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Complaint to HR

Dear Director of Human Resources:

I want to start by thanking you for the amazing opportunity that has been afforded to me to care for my twin babies and watch them grow these last months. It has been an incredible experience and every single day has been a wonderful adventure. Having said that, there are a few items I would like to bring to your attention that I think do not represent the professional work-environment I have been accustomed to in previous positions.

To start, I have serious reservations about the communication style of my new co-workers. It can be very difficult understanding their needs when working with them to accomplish mutual objectives. I find that when they need something, be it an afternoon bottle or have made a poo, they always seem to fall back on screaming at the top of their lungs. I consider myself a reasonable person and have worked well with many different types of personalities, but I seem to be having trouble understanding why the decibel level in the work space must always be so high.

I’m going to look past the hygiene issues which include but are not limited to: drooling, near constant farting, touching me constantly with slimy hands and seeming to want to put everything and anything in their mouths. That with-standing, an issue I cannot fail to mention is the working hours that are expected of me. It seems that these two are some sort of “work-a-holics” and willing to stay up all hours of the day and night to have their needs met. In the past nine months and three weeks neither my wife nor I have gotten even two consecutive nights of decent rest.

I would appreciate your immediate attention to these matters and look forward to your speedy response.


Paul Kaplan

Thursday, April 12, 2012

I guess we're not quite finished baby-proofing the house.

I’ve grown a beard. It’s an overgrown, bushy & bright red beard.

In the beginning it was mostly out of laziness and a general disinterest in shaving. It turns out, that once I sold The Mud Shack there was no longer any reason to shave. As long as I fill bottles on time and ensure proper access to blocks, walkers and Elmo toys; my two remaining co- workers have no complaints about it at all. They even seem to like it, I can tell by how they like to pull on it and smile. In fact, the beard has also been quite popular with all of my orthodox friends. I get the feeling I’m one step closer to their inner-circle. Friends have told me I look a lot more like my Dad and he even said to me that it does look quite familiar.

But as much as I would love for that to be the reason I’ve kept it, that’s not quite it. If I’m being fully honest with you, I like feeling a little more like a man. You see, the world of stay-at-home child caregivers is flooded with estrogen. It’s everywhere: the grocery store, the pharmacy, the pedatrician’s offices, parks, walks around my block, seriously - everywhere.

But more than just feeling manly, I feel like I’ve got something that all that estrogen can’t get you, well aside, from that (get your mind out of the gutter). The sight of a 6’ 3” male pushing a bright green double stroller catches people’s attention; it is like when the guys from the Delta house go in to the Blues Bar in the movie Animal House. I hear the proverbial music stop and see everyone’s head turn to check us out and glance back again to make sure they saw what they thought they saw. This doesn’t bother me, but what can be bothersome is that I feel like I’ve got to be twice the parent as all of them. When their kid is screaming like a wild animal, it’s just a lady with a kid, but when my kid is flailing his or her arms around, throwing his or her bottle and can’t be consoled, I’m that guy over there who can’t control his kid and is clearly in the wrong line-of-work. This is probably 90% my own self-conscious delusion. But for that 10%, I know that at least I’ve got a cool beard and that’s something they’ll never have.