Sunday, March 25, 2007

"Show me that smile again ..."

It's terribly unfortunate that every time the phrase "growing pains" pops into my head, so does Alan Thicke and that horrible television theme song.

"As long as we've got each other..."


So, unfortunately, I'm here thinking about growing pains yet again. Minus the Kirk Cameron.

Our wee Cap'n Quinn enjoys kicking when we try putting him to sleep, as if he had been tied inside a potato sack and thrown into the East Rivuh for double crossin' Mistah Capone.

We have no logical answer to this, other than to chalk it up to growing pains, whatever they may be. It makes perfect sense, I suppose, that he would continue growing at a rapid pace -- off the charts, remember -- and that doing so would bring with it some element of pain.

Yet it still baffles us that he sees fit to try out for the swim team at the precise moments when peace and tranquility are on the menu. This, much like anything else, is at its most annoying at, say, 2 a.m., when Daddy's too tired to put up much of a fight. This leads to Quinn camping out on Daddy's chest until the thunderkicks return.

Hopefully he'll work his way through this phase in short order.

Otherwise, we might have to put in a call to Mike Seaver.

"We've got each other ... sharing the laughter in love."

Today's picture is called, "I hate Growing Pains, too.":

Sunday, March 18, 2007

The great entertainer

Grandma and Grandpa Siemers still enjoy telling the tale of Daddy the entertainer, holding court in the family living room as he portrayed "Stone Erik," a man frozen, for no apparent reason, in the pose of an Egyptian.

Yes, Daddy enjoyed putting on a show. It looks like the good Cap'n Quinn isn't far behind his old man.

This morning we sat at a restaurant with Uncle Marty. Our little hero mostly slept. But when he awoke, he let his presence be known with a chorus of glass-crackling squeaks. If the sound had come from anywhere other than a baby, the series of grandmas and grandpas that sat around us probably wouldn't have found it so adorable. But they did, cooing their own approval -- a reaction just short of our little man's first standing ovation.

Today, Quinn got his first high chair. This, of course, comes because Quinn is already eating cereal off a spoon. It's as if -- as The Who once said -- he was born with a plastic spoon in his mouth. It's the Good Doctor that gave Mommy and Daddy the go-ahead to proceed with foods that aren't -- at least entirely -- liquefied.

It was also the Good Doctor who informed us that Quinn is, and I'll quote, "off the charts" for his height at this age.

That's right. "Off the charts." They don't just make those charts for no reason. That means most kids are on the charts, which is admirable, I'm sure. We're not on the charts. We're "off the charts," as in above it, better than the rest, growing like a weed, getting ready to sign that NBA contract.

Ok, so my reaction might also be considered "off the charts." Clearly, though, we're not the only ones rooting for the good Cap'n.

There was a whole restaurant of grandmas who might buy his record.

And that, most definitely, is "off the charts."

Today's pictures I call, "My doggy loves me" and "Full steam ahead." :

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Super powers

Spiderman's Uncle Ben once said, "With great power comes great responsibility."

It's so true. Especially when your power is extreme cuteness.

Today, for example, Daddy and Cap'n Quinn stopped into a local hot dog shop to get lunch for Mommy. His Cuteness' arrival at the counter was enough to force all the nice Spanish-speaking ladies to cease grilling hot dogs in order to come and coo.

In otherwords, his power of cuteness temporarily stopped operations at a hot dog stand.

Powerful stuff.

Meanwhile, back at our not-so-secret lair (also referred to as either the New Mexico Branch of the Siemers Family, or the West Side Annex of the Albuquerque Smith Clan -- whichever), Daddy's college buddy Marty came by to visit. Uncle Marty's not one to gush, but we have a feeling the good captain's cuteness powers left an impact.

Marty, one of Daddy's collection of airline pilot friends -- you know the airline pilot friends, right? -- was able to tame the not-so-wild Dexie the Wonderdog by getting her to walk calmly by his side as we took Quinn for a stroll this morning.

Quinn and I are thinking Uncle Marty's got some powers of his own.

That's fine. So long as he and the good cap'n remembers to be responsible. Otherwise that hot dog shop might just go out of business.

Today's pictures I call, "Cuteness Volume 1":

Sunday, March 04, 2007

A good weekend

After a rough couple of weeks, the good Cap'n Quinn had a grand slam of a weekend. (It's baseball season, so bear with me.)

Two days with long naps, scream-less car trips, full nights of sleep, and a very low-stress Daddy.

We even took Dexie the Wonderdog for a walk today. That's something Daddy thought would never happen, but mostly because Dexie's a spaz who is likely to get herself tangled.

To commemorate the fine weekend, here are a few photos and a video. They'll be easy to enjoy.

Like a Twins double-header.

"Daddy, thanks for the edible Jumperoo. Mine tastes like orange!"

"This using your hands business is easy. Next week I'll be doing my own taxes."

Saturday, March 03, 2007

You shooda seen da udder guy

Now, let's begin by saying Daddy is normally a mild-mannered fellow. Gentle, if a little clumsy. But mild-mannered would be an appropriate description.

So when Mommy and Daddy went to pick-up the wee Cap'n Quinn from daycare last week only to find that our little hero had gotten his first shiner, a whole new range of emotions began to emerge.

It took a little while -- say an hour or so -- but a source of nearly irrational anger began to well up in Daddy.

But first, the back story.

Apparently for a few hours in the morning, the daycare mixes toddlers and infants until their full staff arrives. During this period, one of the walking toddlers dropped a square-shaped plastic toy on Quinn's head.

A few points of observation: I fully realize that when you put a bunch of toddlers in a room, accidents are prone to happen. But Quinn's immobile and, therefore, should have been moved out of harm's way. Instead, he was on a bouncer that sat on the floor. This is no different from me leaving Quinn on a playmat on the floor as Dexie the Wonderdog mercilessly chased her magical rubber ball across the house. The same dangers exist. Mommy and Daddy, however, are smart enough to realize that Quinn should be placed at some distance away from those dangers.

All of this, naturally, was repeated with a moderate level of repressed anger back to the daycare's manager the following Monday. Hearing this, she nodded her head, agreed with everything I said, and might have even handed me the keys to the shop, her house and her car had I asked for it. Which I didn't, but maybe I should have.

Once we got over that, part two of a difficult week came Wednesday night, when Quinn woke up every 20 minutes. Daddy stayed home from work Thursday to help Mommy, who hadn't gotten a wink of sleep that night. The Good Doctor told us the next day that nothing is wrong, Quinn's healthy, and weighs somewhere in the realm of 13 pounds, though it's hard to say for exactly since he was wearing about 15 layers of clothes that day.

The problem, the Good Doctor surmised, is Quinn -- who Mommy and Daddy rock to sleep -- is now of an age to recognize that we're not there when he wakes up.

The solution to this is painful -- let him cry, the Good Doctor said.

So we did it that night. For an hour that was more agonizing for Mommy since Daddy slept through most of it. (Not for lack of caring, I assure you. I was just tired. Mommy would have left me to cry myself to sleep, too.)

So far, it's helped. The next time Quinn woke up that night, he cried for only about 15 minutes. Tonight -- yes, it's late -- he's gotten up once, been fed, and went right back to sleep.

As for Daddy, well, he's back to his mild-mannered self again. He'll get his sleep some other day.

Like when Quinn's in his 20s. Or separated from the toddlers. Whichever comes first.