Antiques and Other Thoughts

Old Treasures = Old Memories

Lately, I’ve noticed some things on Facebook marketplace that take me back to my childhood. This is much like when I have stopped by Goodwill or the Salvation Army. One time I was walking through Goodwill and I saw a brass teapot that my grandmother had on a table in her front room.

One day Facebook marketplace had an old oil lamp I recognized. I don’t remember who had this in their house, but I remember it being something that fascinated me. I would just sit and watch it.

This week, someone posted a piece of patio furniture that used to sit on my grandma’s back porch. I will always remember this glider. It was metal, so it got hot in the summer time. I also remember that when you got up, you had all these squares imprinted on the back of your legs! My brother found a picture of me in a rocking chair that obviously went with the glider. He seems to think the glider ended up at our house, and he may be right. I don’t remember. All I know is that someone was asking like $500 for it on Marketplace!

I remember there was a lamp that hung at my grandma’s (and I think my mom had one, too) that was an eagle. I want to say it was ceramic. I now it hung on a chain. It was heavy and I always seemed to bump my head on it!

I really wish there were more pictures of things like this in our old photo albums…

I’m A Moron

I had to make a call to my credit card company today to ask a question about something. When I called, it asked for the last four numbers of the card. I read them and the automated voice said that they didn’t match their records. I read it again and they said the same thing. Recently there was a fraudulent charge made and the cancelled the card and sent a new one. I shredded the old one (I thought) and put the new on in my wallet.

Man’s hand holding credit card to stop over spending on it

Yeah, nope. I actually shredded the new card and put the old one back in my wallet. I guess I am glad that I called with a question, or I would have never known I had the wrong card in there. What a dope!!

Little Moments I Treaure

Being back to work, I feel like I don’t get to see Ella. The last couple days when I get home, she looks bigger to me. I mean vastly different. I know this is only perception, but that’s how I feel. I know I am not crazy, cause Sam will say the same thing when she comes home.

This morning, I sat with her on the couch and she was drinking her bottle. When she finished, she snuggled up to me and took my finger in her hand. Man, that is one amazing feeling. I love when she does that. It was the perfect way to end my day!

A Quote to Post on Your Fridge

The following quote showed up in my Facebook Memories and I wanted to share. It comes from the great Sid Caesar:

“Do you know how important ‘NOW’ is? Enjoy it as much as you can, because no matter how much you want to hold on to ‘NOW’, it’s going to be ‘WAS’ !”

Enjoy the NOW!

Thanks for reading!

*Yawn* – I need sleep – or coffee

It’s been an extremely long day for me. I was up early with Ella, had an appointment in the afternoon, and still have to go into work tonight. I’m sure that I’ll be drinking plenty of coffee tonight!

Another Milestone

We’ve been trying to get Ella to sit up. Sam has been doing it with her off and on, and this morning, I sat her up while I was on the floor next to her. She can sit up for a minute or two at a time now! While it is amazing to watch her grow and achieve these amazing milestones, with each one, I am reminded of just how time flies.

Soon, she will be crawling, then walking, then driving! Where’s the pause button?!

Thank You

Thanks for your prayers and your positive vibes! I appreciate them very much. As I mentioned in my last blog, I am working on a few things and am not really to the point where I want to go into detail. I will just say that things are progressing and hopefully things will fall into place. One never knows what to expect when you take a chance on the unknown, but I certainly pray that this is an opportunity to do big things. I’d appreciate if you’d keep sending those prayers!

Am I The Only One Who Thinks This?

So I had a meeting this afternoon. During this meeting everyone is wearing masks. There are no handshakes. There is social distancing. As I looked at everyone else in their masks, I began to think, “We’re all Wilson from Home Improvement!” All we could see were each other’s eyes! “Hi Dee Ho, Neighbor!”

I Thought This Was Cool

I may have mentioned this before, but it is weird to watch baseball without fans in the stands. I recently saw this on Facebook and had to give kudos. Imagine you’ve bought season tickets to see your favorite team play, and then Covid hits and you cannot see the games. The Pittsburgh Pirates sent this to one of their season ticket holders:

How cool is that?! I always hope to catch a foul ball at a ball game. I’m sure this fan had to be excited to get this. Kudos to the Pirates for doing this!

Your Feel Good Internet Moment …

During “Quarantine 2020” many folks stayed at home and binge watched TV shows. Jennifer Garner recently binged watched all the episodes of The Office. The series finale brought her to tears. She actually recorded her reaction, but accidentally recorded it in slow motion. This led many of the stars of the show to respond to her post. It’s worth the watch – see it at the link below:

https://www.msn.com/en-us/tv/news/the-office-stars-weigh-in-on-jennifer-garners-emotional-finale-reaction-video/ar-BB18mbxe?li=BBnb7Kz

I Need To Nap!

With that, I will sign off! Need to snooze before work – gonna be a long night!

Thanks for reading! *Yawn*

Weekend Wrap Up

I am not working my normal schedule at work, so my days are a bit messed up. The weekend for me, basically consisted of half a Saturday and today. I work Friday overnight and get home Saturday morning about 8am. I slept till about 2pm and Sam woke me up so we could enjoy some family time together.

We’re not to keen on actually going out to dinner, but we ordered out and got food from one of our favorite restaurants. I’m not going to lie – it was nice to sit back and enjoy a great steak at home and be with Sam and the baby for the day (even if it was short).

Sunny Sunday Morning

Sam works tonight, so it was Ella and me today. She was up at 7:30, and after she ate, we went out for a walk in the neighborhood. There were a surprising amount of people up that early. We saw people walking their dogs, people taking out the trash, people riding their bikes, and people just enjoying the sunshine out on their porch reading the paper.

It got pretty hot today, but it was cool when we walked. I figured we should probably get the walk in before it got too hot. Ella just loves to be outside, so when we got home, we sat out on the front porch step and watched cars go by. She gets so excited when that happens. There is a church at the end of our street, so there were plenty of cars for her to watch this morning.

When we came inside to eat, we must have woke Sam up. Sam fed her (and let her play in the apple/strawberry/banana baby food that she didn’t eat). Naturally, she needed a bath afterward! She was obviously tired, and Sam was going back to bed to try to sleep, so she took Ella in the bedroom to nap with her.

I watched a pastor friend of mine from Grand Rapids on Facebook Live teaching on a passage in the book of Colossians until Ella woke up. I usually work Sunday night, too, and sleep most of the day in preparation for being up all night. Thank God for the Internet, as I can tune into pastor friends in my hometown, across the state, out of state, and even out of the country if I want.

“I know what we’re gonna do today…”

In all the time we have had cable TV, I guess I didn’t know we had Disney Channel. That was the channel that was on when I turned the TV on today. Usually, I turn on the TV for background noise, and it is usually on PBS. Sometimes, it is on Nick Jr. because Ella loves Bubble Guppies. Anyway, it was on Disney Channel and I was happy to see that there was a marathon of Phineas and Ferb on this weekend.

I used to watch this with the boys all the time. It was so much fun. If you are not familiar with the show, the entire show happens during the 104 days of Summer Vacation. Each day brings the boys on a new adventure. They are always building something out of this world, their sister tries to get them in trouble with their mom, and their pet platypus is a secret agent who stops an evil scientist from destroying the “tri-state area.” There’s always a musical number in each episode, too. It is a blast to watch.

I’m not sure if they were running them in order, but I know the last episode they showed was the actual series finale. Ella was sleeping in my arms while the last episode (which I had never seen before) played. Call me what you will, but I was totally wrapped up in it. Kudos to Dan Provenmire and Jeff Marsh for creating such an amazing show. Sadly, the entire series is not available on DVD. If it was, I would surely buy it … for Ella to watch …. with daddy….

I never had the chance to when I was doing radio full time, but I had always hoped to get to interview Dan Provenmire (who does the voice of Dr. Doofenshmirtz). I thought it would be cool if he could do my voice mail message – hell, I still wish I could have him do it! I’d love to sit and talk with him about the show. I messaged him on Facebook once and complimented him on the music numbers and he gave me a little insight into what went into that for every episode. Those are thing things I miss about not being in radio anymore – interviewing neat people.

Almost Monday

Ella is sleeping now and the sounds of her sound machine are coming out of the baby monitor next to me. I watched a message from a pastor in Warren about the importance of the Bible and how it will be used in the last days, which was very interesting. One thing the pastor mentioned was how he tries to read through the entire Bible once a year. I really need to find a way to do that.

As I ate my dinner, I watched our cat run back and forth chasing a fly that got in the house. She finally caught it … and ate it. I’m glad I was already done eating. I’m going to take a little trip down to see my dad tomorrow. He’s recovering from knee surgery and I want to make sure he doesn’t need anything done.

One request before I close – I have something brewing that I am hoping might pan out for me. I will be looking into it further this week. If you would be so kind as to pray for me, or send positive vibes, I’d appreciate it very much.

Thanks for reading!

Shake It Up!

I didn’t feel it, as I was driving in to work, but Michigan had an earthquake today. I guess it happened close to 7pm and was a magnitude 3.2 earthquake. Some friends of mine downriver posted about this on Facebook.

I remember being at my grandma’s house one summer and feeling the ground shake a little. We were on the couch watching TV. Later that day, it was all over the news that there was an earthquake.

In 2015 we had a small earthquake here. Not many people felt it. It was almost a joke. People were posting this picture with the caption “We will rebuild” on it!

I realize that earthquakes can be serious and deadly, and I am lucky that I’ve never actually been through a bad one. I can’t even begin to imagine what it would be like. Every time I hear about an earthquake, I am always reminded of the scene below from Sanford and Son. Fred’s response after it is all over always cracks me up.

The earthquake begins about 48 seconds into the clip. Fred’s reaction at 1:39

Wildfires, Covid-19, Murder Hornets, Earthquakes …. one can only imagine what 2020 has in store for the remainder of the year….

Catching up…

It’s hard to believe that is has been over a month since I have written a blog, but then again, it isn’t. I feel like I have been busier than ever, and I have been.

I’m hoping this blog looks ok, as I see WordPress has changed a few things ….

6 Months already??!!

On August 10th, Ella turned 6 months old! She is growing up so fast! There are times I look at her and wonder, “When did she get so big?”

She is rolling all over the place now. She rolls from back to front and front to back. She will be crawling before we know it. She is primarily moving backwards. What I mean is, when she is in her walker, she tends to push it backwards. When she is on the floor playing, she will often slide backwards on the floor. She is semi-scooting if a toy in just out of reach in front of her, so I know she will be crawling soon.

One of the biggest changes, has been the switch to real food. She has had carrots (which she wasn’t too keen on), bananas, apples, squash, peas, and sweet potatoes. She’s having sweet potatoes the past couple days, and we’ll keep introducing new foods for three days at a time to be sure there are no allergies. When she eats all her food, she gets to chow on puffs.

She loves these things! She’s getting into the habit of grabbing them from her tray and putting them in her mouth. I remember when my boys ate these. They are actually good and I would steal one or two from them to make them laugh.

Sam and I are each saying “Momma” and “Dada” to her (she says “momma” and I say “dada”) to see which one she will say first! Personally, I think her first word will be “kitty” because the cat is always right by her. They have daily staring contests with each other.

One of the highlights of my time with her has been morning walks around the neighborhood. She loves getting in the stroller and walking with me. She loves to see the dogs, cats, rabbits, and squirrels along the way.

One day we were walking and I was stopped by an older woman. She told me her grandchildren had outgrown a wagon she had and she wanted to give it to us, if we wanted it. It was a nice plastic wagon, like the one I had for both of my boys. I asked her how much she wanted for it, and she told me she didn’t want anything for it. She just wanted to give it to someone who would use it. It had been out in her backyard, and she told me she wanted to wash it before I took it. I came back the next day and it was washed and ready to go. I sent the couple a thank you note in the mail and told them the world needed more people like them. I can’t wait until we can start walking the neighborhood in the wagon.

Ella is at the age where “peek-a-boo” makes her laugh. I can’t even tell you how much I love this! I usually take her burp rag and cover her face and say “peek-a-boo” pulling the burp rag off her face when I say “boo!” She cracks up. Sometimes I lay with my arms in front of my face on the floor and say “Peek-a-boo” and lift my head up at “boo,” which makes her laugh too. Today, she pulled the burp rag over her face and pulled it down on her own and laughed every time her face was not covered. I swear, she was playing “peek-a-boo” with me!

I used to wear hats all the time (probably why I am bald!), and recently grabbed a ball cap to go on our walk. She was fascinated by it. When we came home and we were playing on the floor, she kept grabbing for it. I eventually put it on her and caught the cutest picture!

She is still teething (doc says there should be 4 teeth coming in VERY soon).

The Boys

My oldest son is working like crazy. He found a job delivering pizzas, and he loves it! It makes sense, he was always my road map! He always knew which way to turn and such. He loves driving and he’s making decent money in tips. He calls me often when he is on his way home from work. He is working like 6 days a week, so I don’t get to see him too much.

My youngest son will be doing school all online till further notice. Not sure how that will work for him (or others for that matter). I can see some subjects not being too bad, but I don’t think that math works well online. I need someone explaining things to me (not a computer). I had a very hard time when my pre-algebra class in college was all on computer. Thank goodness I had a teacher who would walk me through problems. I don’t know how much he will have.

When he comes over, we usually play catch, cribbage, or chess. Last time he was over, he creamed me in chess! Wow, I made some silly moves! I enjoy that time with him though. We had good talks the last couple times he was over. It was nice that he asked me some bible questions. I enjoy talking to him about it.

One day, I got to go to lunch with both of them. There is a little outdoor hot dog stand by their house. We sat and ate coneys and drank home made root beer. It was nice to be outside and enjoy the day and just talking.

My Days on Furlough

Thankfully, I was called back to work and did not have to be on furlough more than a couple weeks. My list of things to do while I was off really didn’t get done. I was able to finally get family pictures (from when Ella was born) hung on the walls! I did get a chance to read a book or two, but that “to read” stack is still huge (including a new book by John Byner).

On nights that Sam worked, and I was home, I would put the baby to bed and review my bible classes. I was able to get one of the three semesters I had already finished reviewed. I am glad I chose to go back and review, because there were things I had forgotten. These classes have really helped me a lot and I am excited to get through them. When I get to the classes I haven’t already taken, things will slow down a bit as I will be taking detailed notes.

I rediscovered Calvin and Hobbes while I was off. I forgot how much I loved to read about the boy and his tiger that came to life when they were together. (Toys that came alive before Toy Story!) I posted this on my Facebook, because I just loved it.

I always love sitting outside and star gazing. My co-worker told me about an app called SkyView which you can point at the sky and it will show you planets and constellations. It’s very cool.

Speaking of the sky, I found myself doing something I hadn’t done in forever while I was off. Ella loves to be outside. So we’ve been putting a blanket down on the grass where the shade is. We bring out a few toys, and she will just lay there and play. I laid down next to her on my back on day and noticed the clear blue sky loaded with white clouds. As I watched them move across the sky, I remembered sitting out in my front or back yard and looking at the clouds with my friends. We’d look at the clouds to see what they looked like. Was it a castle? A wolf? Snoopy? We’d spend hours watching the clouds. What a peaceful way to spend time on a summer day! Did you ever do that?

So much more has happened in the last month, but I will close for now. Life is moving fast and sometimes we forget to enjoy things that are right in front of us. Remember the old saying “Take time to smell the roses?” Since I have started to really notice things, I find myself more grateful and more at peace than I have been for a long time.

On my first day back to work, I was feeling so much anxiety when getting ready to go in. While driving in, I was simply amazed at the beautiful sunrise. What an amazing sight! All anxiety faded away and I found myself smiling at God’s artwork.

Until next time – look around and enjoy those things that normally wouldn’t catch your attention.

Thanks for dropping by! I hope all is well you you and yours!

Getting Organized

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In the Harry Potter films, each student puts on the “Sorting Hat” and it “sorts” out which house the student will reside in.  I don’t have a hat, but I do need to do some sorting/organizing of my blog.

I want to take a minute and thank my friend Max.  He’s been following my blog almost from the beginning.  We have many things in common (TV, Movies, Music, Etc..).  We began conversing through the comment section here and eventually through e-mail. I had told him that I liked the fact that his blog had an index.  He told me that he would help me set one up for this page.

Recently we connected on the phone and he walked through the very easy process of adding a chronological list on the front page.  Hopefully you have noticed this.  Next he helped me create the basic frame work for the pages that will have all of my blogs organized by topic.  This will be where the work comes in.

I currently have 280 blogs.  Some cover one topic specifically, while others are a hodgepodge of various thoughts and topics.  My job over the next few weeks/months will be to sort through these posts and try to place them on the appropriate page.  This will be difficult, as some blogs may fit into one or more categories.

Right now, I am trying to figure out just what categories I should create.  Some are easy – music, for example.  I have many blogs devoted to just songs.  Some blogs are from blogathons.  Some are just about my daughter.  Just how many categories do I want?  How many is too many?  Does it even matter?  I don’t know, but I hope to go through all of them and sort them.  Once that is done, I will be able to assign each new blog to a category as I go.

It is a daunting task, but it will help pass time when this lay off happens.

Thanks again, Max!

Stay tuned for the final result…

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Well, well, well. Look who’s back…

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This is my first blog since May 18th. I guess this is the longest I have gone between blogs and many have sent private messages wondering if I am doing okay. My good buddy, Max, sent an email asking about me and it took me a while to write him back. Knowing I work in the medical field, and knowing how often I blog, he feared the worst. Needless to say, he was relieved to hear back from me. I figured if folks were worried if I was still around, I’d take some time to write.

It is not that I haven’t had stuff to write about, because I certainly have. I guess I was just having a hard time motivating myself to do so. It has been a very emotional month. So where do I even begin?

When I last wrote, I had just celebrated my 50th birthday. It seems that every time I hit a mile stone birthday, something happens to remind me I am getting older. This birthday, I found myself trying to read and really having difficulty seeing the words. I had Lasik surgery done years ago and I have had no real issues with my vision. I was told that the only thing that they couldn’t correct was if I needed reading glasses. I need to make an appointment to have my eyes checked, but until then, I am reading with these ridiculous readers on!

Speaking of birthdays, I feel bad because two very important ones came and went since I last blogged and they certainly both deserved a full blog. My wife celebrated at the beginning of the month and my youngest son officially became a teenager just a few days ago. Birthdays in quarantine suck. I didn’t get to really do anything for either of them! It will be a week or two before I see my son, so I am planning on doing something for him when he is back here with me.

I got Amazon gift cards from my mother and father-in-law, and from my dad. I decided I’d get some vinyl to play. One for laughs and one for music.

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You can’t go wrong with Frank Sinatra. They remixed his Nice and Easy album and I picked that up.

Next, I found an album I had years ago that is loaded with laughs from the great Soupy Sales.

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Graduation on the Internet

My oldest son graduated this year. You may have seen something about his school, as it made national news. They rented the Drive-in theater in town and showed all of the commencement speeches, staff speeches, and called out every graduate’s name (while showing their pictures) on the three big screens. Sadly, only one car per student was allowed, so Sam and I watched the live stream from home. It was certainly not the way I thought I would see my son graduate.

I emailed the principal and voiced how disappointed I was that only one car was allowed per student. Certainly there were more divorced parents than just me! I had hoped that he would return my email, but that didn’t happen. So, I cheered and cried when they read his name from my living room. He wore his cap and gown to the ceremony, but I haven’t gotten any pictures of him in them. I am hoping that he will come by with them so I can at least get one.

Back to Work

I returned to work two weeks ago. I really wasn’t sure I was ready to return, but the doc thought I’d be okay. The lab where I work is open, but only a few of the staff is back there. The rest are still working in a labor pool at jobs that they are assigned to. When I returned to work, that was where I went. The only bad thing is, the labor pool is going away and that means I will have to take a temporary lay off.

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The thing that scares me is wondering if they will ever call me back. I know of many people in radio who were told they were being laid off temporarily, only to have the companies eliminate those positions and terminate them. This is happening all over as many companies are doing whatever is necessary to keep their business alive. In the weekly trade magazine that comes our for just country radio stations, there is almost three pages of people LOOKING for jobs, while there is just a half page of stations looking to hire people.

Father’s Day

Father’s Day I was up early to meet my sons for breakfast. It was the first time we’d eaten in a restaurant since things opened back up. It was nice to see both of them together. Lately, I have only been seeing Dimitri, as Dante’ is now working and usually hanging with his friends. We had a nice breakfast and I enjoyed my time with them.

When I came home, Sam had Ella all dressed for Father’s Day.

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I received my Father’s Day/Birthday gift from Sam between my birthday and Father’s Day. She ordered me something that was made special for me. She had hoped it would be here by my birthday, but it took a few weeks to make. I was floored by this when it arrived. It was a book –

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She got to design how I looked, and how Ella looked. She said it was hard because her hair was still looking red some days and blonde on others. There were various stories to put in the book. She had Ella point and those were the ones that ended up in the book. She asked me to read it and I could barely make it through. It made me so emotional. It was the perfect gift and I will treasure it forever!!

My Baby Girl

The one thing that has been a plus though all of this is the time that I have gotten to spend with Ella. She brings me so much happiness. On nice days, we always try to take a walk around the neighborhood. She loves it! We look at the squirrels, listen to the birds, say hello to neighbors, and just enjoy the nice weather.

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We like to play with her toys on the floor, she likes to bounce in her jumpy seat, we nap together, and occasionally, we’ll watch Bubble Guppies together (she likes the music on that show).

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Sometimes, I will put on my Dean Martin or Frank Sinatra albums and we’ll sway and dance in the living room. Having this precious time with her has been a blessing. With the layoff, I will have more time with her and that will be the positive in a negative situation.

Classes

My DVD’s arrived for my Bible classes. I am currently re-watching the first year (the stuff that I had already done) and will continue with the new classes when I am finished. Just revisiting these classes has been very beneficial for me. I am glad that I decided to return.

I certainly feel like my spiritual life is moving in the right direction. I have a lot of peace right now, despite the uncertainty that lies ahead. I have faith that no matter what is ahead of me …. Every thing will be okay.

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With that being said, I guess that brings you up to date. I hope to not be so long between blogs. Thanks for reading!

Halfway to 100 …

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I received my invitation to join the AARP early last week. A week earlier the letter from the Secretary of State telling me my plates were about to expire came in the mail. Both served as a reminder that I was about to get older. Three days ago, I completed my 50th trip around the sun.  I celebrated the 11th anniversary of my 39th birthday, as I like to say. My milestone birthday was celebrated in quarantine.

All over Facebook there are “quarantine items” you can have made.  You can have things like: “Our first anniversary – in quarantine,”  “Class of 2020 – the one spent in quarantine,”  or “I turned 50 in quarantine and all I got was social distancing,” put on T-shirts, coffee mugs, or just about anything. I’m thankful that I didn’t get any of that stuff for my birthday.  As a matter of fact, I am glad it happened while in quarantine!

Why would I be glad about that?  Well, I know my wife.  She would have found a way to throw me some sort of party.  Don’t get my wrong, I would love to see all my friends and family.  I just wouldn’t want all the hoopla surrounding my age.  I can see all the black “Over the Hill” balloons, “Look who’s 50!” banners, and I’d receive gifts like a cane with a bicycle bell and rear view mirror on it!  No, I don’t need that.  Besides, most of my close friends are all turning 50 this year, too.  I’m sure there will be some sort of birthday party down the road for one of them.  I can go to that and celebrate with them!  Hell, maybe a joint party is needed?

We had some errands to run early in the day, so I was out when my oldest son called me.  I felt bad, because he drove to my house to surprise me with a card.  He left it in the door for me and he had me video chat him when I got home.  He told me he couldn’t find a Tim Horton’s card, so he opted for Burger King, because he knows I drink their coffee, too!

Another friend texted me and said “Yo!  What is your favorite beer?”  This made me chuckle.  I told her that was the weird text of the day and told her two of my favorites.  On the drive home, I received another text from her that simply read: “Yo!  Check your porch!”  When I got home there was a six pack of each of my favorite beers and a wonderful heartfelt note.

One of the errands we had to run was for my wife.  She had me stop at this local bakery and sent me in to pick up her order.  She had asked me earlier in the week what my favorite ice cream was.  I told her it was probably Mint Chocolate Chip.  This little bakery made me a Mint Chocolate Chip birthday cake.  It was simply delicious!  It tasted just like the ice cream!

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She and Ella made me a very special birthday gift.  I cannot even begin to tell you how special it is.  She took Ella’s footprints and made a heart.  I cried when she gave it to me.  I always hope that she will see me as her first love and her hero!  I can’t wait to hang it up.

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Ella’s feet were busy this week.  10 days earlier, for Mother’s Day, I had also used her feet for an art project.  Funny how my wife and I think alike … I heard Sam singing “You are My Sunshine” to Ella one day and then found this idea, and made it for her.

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Throughout the day, there were countless Facebook messages, calls from my son, brother and father, and text messages from friends and family.  Getting to spend my birthday at home with my wife and daughter meant the world to me.  As a matter of fact, it was the perfect way to spend the day.

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Her smile just melts my heart!

So what will 50 bring?  I don’t know.  What do I wish for?  Good health.  Weight loss.  A growing family.  Less stress.  Job security.  More family time.  To be a better husband and father.  Less debt.  Better time management.  A deeper and stronger faith.  To be more forgiving.  To be less angry.  The ability to let go of the things that hold me back.  To be more positive.  To make amends for wrongs I have done.  To look at each day as a gift.  To listen more.  To smile more.  To love and cherish those who are important to me.

Cheers to another year!

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It’s a Gas – Baby Burps

Ella is 3 months old now.  She is cooing and smiling more and more.  She is becoming more and more curious about the world around her.  Quarantine has limited exploring outside the house to walks around the neighborhood, drives to the doctor, and the rare occasional visit where she sees people through the window.

As she gets bigger, there have been many changes.  Her facial features are changing daily, her clothes are getting tighter, and we’re about ready to move up a size in diapers.  One change I was not ready for, or expecting, was how much harder it is to get her to burp!

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There use to be a time where she’d eat an ounce of formula, I’d sit her up and the burp would happen before I even started patting her back.  There were times where she would burp after just one or two pats on the back.  Today, however, it has become a chore to get a good burp out of her.

It has become so difficult that Sam and I are joking about it.  When we have our Fit Bits on, we joke that we are getting our “steps” for the day because with each pat on her back, it registers a “step!”  We are exceeding our 10,000 steps every day!  It’s crazy!

I remember with my son, I could get him to burp while he was on my shoulder.  This doesn’t work for Ella.  I usually have to sit her up on my lap, and she will burp.  I am told that the “football” hold works good, too, but all that has done for Ella is allow her to puke on floor.

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When we do get a burp, it can range from a loud “Barney from the Simpsons” burp to one that is barely noticeable.  With those, I find myself asking Sam, “Was that a burp?” and pat her back a few more times just in case.  You gotta be careful, though.  If it was a burp, too much extra patting will just lead to puking.

There will be more burping to come in the months ahead.  Burping is important!  Anyone who has ever had a baby knows that a baby with gas is NOT happy!  The will cry and scream because they are in terrible pain – all because they have gas!  I learned real fast about “gas drops.”

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This is a miracle drug.  I’m not lying.  Man, I wish adult medications worked as fast as this stuff!  I swear, it is almost instantaneous!  I have used these drops with every one of my kids and it has never failed (as long as the reason they were crying was indeed gas). If I ever meet the man or woman who invented them, I will hug them and thank them endlessly!

At any rate, I welcome your suggestions for best ways to burp a baby.  I need to wrap it up, now.  I have to “get my steps in” for the day …..

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Nicknames

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My grandparents had nicknames for everybody! In all honestly, I think my whole family had nicknames for everybody. For example, my dad and grandfather worked with a guy they called “Buckets”. My dad said something about how he had to fill buckets with parts or something at work, which led to that nickname. There was a family friend who we met while my parents where big into the CB radio craze. My grandma called him “Three Days”. He had gone over to visit once and then it had been a while between visits. My grandma asked where he had been and reminded him that “they bury the dead in three days” and the nickname stuck. We had a cousin they called “Flookie”. I don’t know the story behind that name. There was an aunt called “Harpo” because of a picture we saw of her with this Harpo Marx perm. There was an uncle called “Pif”. The list of nicknames goes on and on.

They also had nicknames for my friends. My best friend, Jeff, used to help when my grandpa drove us around delivering newspapers. We’d always be making noises and laughing. It probably annoyed my grandpa more than he let us know. Whenever he asked about Jeff, he’d call him “the crazy one.” When they talked about my Polish friend, Joe, they called him “the Polack.” My friend Steve had a variety of nicknames. Because he always seemed to have the Ace of clubs when we played pinochle, they’d call him “the Ace of Clubs.” He always ate a ton of Long John coffee cake when he was at their house, so “Long John” was another. One time he went into their fridge without asking and it pissed my grandpa off, so he became “the rude one.”

My Uncle Tom, my Godfather, had a few nicknames. The one I always used was “Rozmo.”. I am not even sure I know how he got that one. One of the Vietnam Vet guys used to call him “Rufus.” He will always be Rozmo to me.

My friends and I used nicknames, too. Many I can’t remember, but a few I do. I called my friend Margaret “M&M” because her last name started with M. This was LONG before Marshall Mathers (who went to our high school) decided to call himself Eminem. My friend Warren I called “JJ” and he called me “Victor” (characters from Cannonball Run). Steve went by a few nicknames – Srgt. PIN, Smokey the Bear, and a few others. Joe and I called each other cavemen names (maybe because of a cartoon or cereal or something) – Gronk and Ugma. Our friend Ron was called “Boom Boom” because it rhymed with his last name. I am sure my friends can remind me of others.

I don’t remember many of the ones I was called. In elementary school I ran for student council. I did my campaign speech in a blue denim cowboy hat and wore a blue suit. Although his suit was white and mine was blue, many called me “Boss Hogg.” In high school, when we were TPing houses, Steve called me “Hucklebuck” which eventually turned into “Hucklebuck DeValier!”

Baby Nicknames

It got me thinking about all the names parents call their babies. I used to call Dante’ “bubba” and Dimitri “buddy” among other silly ones. Ella is a nickname, as you know. Her real name is Pamela and we call her Ella. Both Sam and I have many names we call her:

  • Scooter Butt
  • Scooter
  • Ella Bella
  • Ellie Bellie
  • Pammie Poo
  • Poo Poo Pants
  • Stinker
  • Stinker Butt
  • Cootie
  • Scoots
  • Boo Boo
  • Toots
  • Tooter
  • Baby Goo
  • Smiley
  • Smiley Miley
  • El
  • Ginger Snap

She has so many names, she probably doesn’t even know her real name! At any rate, I was picking her up yesterday and I was talking to her. My Google Assistant on my phone went off and picked up me talking to her. It then beeped back at me and I had to laugh when I looked at my phone.

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“Sorry, I don’t understand.” Hilarious! I am sure that when I am out in public with her (when all these restrictions are lifted), I am going to be talking baby talk to her and people will be staring at me like I am crazy.

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Did you have a nickname? Did it stick with you? Tell me about it!

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