Thursday, March 31, 2005

Fun New Games

When I got home tonight, I found out that Ellie had learned a new game today. If you make a fake sneezing sound, "aaaah choo!", she makes a little cough and laughs, laughs, laughs. Aparently this is what passes for entertainment for a 1 year old. So, I "aaaah choo!"-ed all night long. High piched. Low piched. Short. Long. All of them got the same giggly response.

I love my family.

Monday, March 28, 2005

A Day in the Life

I thought it was about time I bored everyone with a chronicle of "A Day in the Life of Paul." ''This is a typical M/W/F when I take Ellie to school.''

Depending on when Ellie chooses to wake up, I usually rouse from slumber between 6:30 and 7:00. From time to time, I sleep in a bit and Mom gets up with Ellie.

As I pick Ellie up and give her a great big "good morning" hug, I take a little sniff and hope that there isn't a big gooey surprise for me when I open her diaper. Odds of having a disgusting parent story to share at work are pretty 50/50.

Ellie and I head out for some breakfast with a short, pale sausage of a pug following behind. So, we take Lizzi outside for a morning pit stop. Odds of Lizzi leaving something on the yard that I won't clean up later: 95%.

Food for the dog is easiest, so she gets fed first. Rather than scarfing down her food, though, Lizzi hunkers down under the high-chair hopeing for something better than top-shelf dry dog food.

Breakfast for Ellie usually comes from a short list of options including eggs, cream of wheat, cheesy grits (those would be Mom's idea!), or oatmeal. Nice health, hot breakfast which inevitably ends up partially smeared across Ellie's face.

After first breakfast and some face/hand washing, we head back to the bedroom to wake Mom up. Time for a nice antibody rich second breakfast of breast milk while Dad showers (in the newly created basement bathroom!)

After Dad's done showering and Mom has picked out some clothes for Ellie to wear -- Dad usually mismatches different outfits together -- everyone gets ready to go off to their respective days of work, school, play, or some combination thereof.

Ellie and Dad head off to school... which Ellie usually LOVES. Ellie says "buh bye" with a wave and sends Dad on his way to work.

I won't bore with the details of a typical work day. Meeting. Meeting. Bathroom break. Meeting. Lunch meeting. Side conversation about meetings. Cynical note on home many meetings we have. Meeting. Snack on $1/package M&M's that supposed help support needy or disabled children. Meeting. Do 5 minutes of work because the last meeting ended early! Impromptu meeting as I walk out the door.

Whew! Now for a nice liesurely drive home in rush hour... which may take 30 minutes or 90 minutes depending on traffic. Arg.

Home again. Home again. Jiggity jog!
"Daddy's Home!"

I love hearing Mom say those words to Ellie as I walk in the door. Even better is the huge grin from Ellie, first when she sees the car coming up the driveway, and even bigger when she sees me walk in the door. I run over to pick her up and...

Oop. Better wash my hands first. Been at work with dirty, sick people with outside germs.

I shed the garments of industry, step into something more comfy, and wash my hands thoroughly.

Now I can give Ellie a huge hug! She's been playing on the bed with Mom as I cleanup.

Mom's usually got dinner done or mostly done, so Ellie and I only play a few minutes in the front room before dinner is ready to eat. Even more so than breakfast, we let Ellie do most of her own feeding at dinner. Things often endup a big of a mess, but that's what baths are for!

Speaking of baths... when dinner's done, it's usually time for a nice warm bath. Ellie loves the bath! Especially all the shiney fixtures and the drain. She's learning that when Dad says "time to go" or "all done", then it's OK for her to pull the drain and let the water out.

"Time to go!" Followed by some typical Dad joke having to do with letting the baby out with the bath water... How embarassing that I've turned into my father.

Depending on how early bath time is done, Ellie and I might have an hour or two to play before bedtime. So we play. Sometimes watch a little TV. Often go for a walk. But Mom nurses Ellie again before bed, and fills her with can range from extra-strength-Nyquil-milk to double-esspresso-milk. You just never know if the nursing will put Ellie down or get her wound up.

Eventually Ellie makes it down. The off-to-bed-endeavors can be written another time.

By now, it's usually after 9:00. Sometimes after 11:00 or later depending on how easily Ellie goes to sleep. Usually between 9:00 and 9:30, though.

Which leaves only a few more hours of consciouness before I hit the sack. The todo list:
- Occassionaly laundry
- Always dishes and kitchen cleanup
- Usually a Daily Show or two on the TiVo
- Possibly 24, Alias, or West Wing
- Probably one of the 18 Law and Orders that were on that day
- Mail sorting
- Bill paying
- Other odds and ends around the house
- Blog from time to time

Then finally off to bed. Tonight, I'm going to bed early... aiming for that 8 hours of sleep.

Monday, March 21, 2005

Happy Smiley Ellie

It's so great to have happy smiley Ellie back!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Sleep Deprivation

Apparently, I'm sleep deprived. I should have, of course, known this for some time, but my theory was officially confirmed on Monday.

My father-in-law was in town for a conference on hypno-therapy and listened to another doctor discussing his new theories on sleep. Here's how to tell if you're getting enough: How long does it take you to fall asleep after you get in bed? If you fall asleep in about 20 minutes, then you're likely getting the right amount of sleep. If you fall asleep immediately, then you're likely sleep deprived. (I'm the latter. Nearly every night, I collapse into bed and fall asleep, sometimes even before I get my glasses off.)

According to this doctor's research, everyone needs just about the same amount of sleep, around 8:15 hr. I average in around 6:30 hr. Of course, Sarahlynn probably averages around 4:30 - 5:00 hr. And she seems to do alright.

What are the consequences of not getting enough sleep: irritableness, lack of patience, and low-grade depression. If you want to know where I sit on those side effects, talk to Sarahlynn.

Better, anecdotal evidence that I'm sleep deprived comes when Ellie decides to wake up in the middle of the night. She's been sick lately, so that tends to happen more frequently. When she's up in the middle of the night and I'm working on rocking her back to sleep and she's just laid back staring at me with wide-open blue eyes, here's what the voice is typically saying in my head... (remember that I'm a computer geek for both vocation and avocation)

  • Now is this happening in the development or production environment?
  • This has got to be in production, there's no development Ellie. That'd be silly.
  • Clearly the Ellie process isn't working correctly. She should be asleep, or at least not need to be monitored at night.
  • How do I find out what PID is keeping her awake?
  • If I knew what process was running, I could "kill" it and she could go back to sleep.
  • None of that makes sense.
  • We need a better development methodology, so we can clean up these production processes.
  • The production Ellie should be able to run through the night without any intervention or monitoring.
  • Someone needs to debug this.
  • ...

You think I'm joking. Apparently I'm mildly sleep deprived and think too much about work.

Then sometimes, the voice in my head breaks out into song, courtesy of Bare Naked Ladies...
  • Who needs sleep? Well you're never gonna get it!
  • Who needs sleep? Tell me what's that for!
  • Who needs sleep? Be happy with what you're getting!
  • There's a guy's been awake since the Second World War!

Miracle of miracles

Silly little post, but...

Several months ago, my Zaurus touch screen stopped working again. It had broken once and I was able to use my super-power electrical engineering skills to fix it. (No snickers about the Taboo buzzer incident or the time I sprayed my harddrive with WD-40!) But now it seemed to be dead for good.

I feared that someday I'd end up buying a Windows or Palm based PDA, and give up the freedom of Linux.

Miracle of miracles... today, it randomly started working again! (May have something to do with me dropping it on the parking log last week... who knows.)

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Germ Warefare

Sick kid. Sick Mommy. Sick Daddy. At least the dog is happy and playful.

Having everybody sick all at once is no fun, especially when you're the least sick of them all.

We're all doing better now, but Ellie did spent a night being rehydrated in the hospital. Not much fun there for her, trying to sleep with a pokey IV in your foot. So, she and I just sat and cuddled all night long, while Mom went home and had fun with the stomach flu.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

I don't think they mean it

I love ThinkGeek, but really! I definitely do not want to see the action shots for this product...

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Ellie's First Trip

Mom posted about this, too, but it was some really great Daddy/Ellie time, so I definitely needed to write something.

Day 1:
So, we went to New Orleans this past weekend! Mom had a business trip there and Ellie and I thought we'd tag along and have some fun.

Ellie did great on the flight down. We had to wake her up early to leave for the airport, so she was more than willing to sleep on most of the flight down. She woke up for the past 1/2 hour, and was great. No ear-popping problems. No fussing. Just cuteness.

After the taxi ride from the airport to the hotel, during which Ellie was secured tightly to my chest with the BabyBjorn and I was secured with my seatbelt, and a fiasco trying to check-in, Ellie and I had lunch together and then went back to take a nap in the hotel lobby (no room yet). -- The taxi situation with the bjorn seems a pretty safe option when a car seat isn't available. (We would have brought a carseat if we'd planned to use it more that to and from the airport, but the whole trip was us walking around.)

Day 2:
The classic breakfast of coffee and beignes at Cafe du Monde! Then off to the St. Charles street car and a ride to the Audubon Zoo while Mom spends the day at the conference. Ellie slept through some of the zoo, but she woke up in time for a lunch of cat fish and fries and jumbalaya. Ellie also seemed to take a special liking to the reptile house:

We made it back just in time to spend a couple hours in the hotel room trying (unsuccessfully) to nap before dinner at world famous Brennan's. Awfully fancy for a restaurant that is touted as family friendly. Turns out that family friendly in the French Quarter just means that they have highchairs -- but the server did a great job with Ellie, and Ellie did a great job at dinner. Tip for taking young kids out to eat: avoid a four-course meal, jump right to the entree.

Day 3:
Another big day for Dad and Ellie. We all had breakfast together, then Ellie and Dad headed out to the French Quarter for some sightseeing and souvenir shopping. Ellie got to see her first street performers. (Not a great picture, but the does make a cart-wheel leap over all 8 people!)

We did some shopping in the French Market. Had lunch at Crescent Brewery. Did some shopping here and there. Then headed back to the hotel to drop some things off before heading back out for our river boat cruise on the Natchez. Mom was supposed to come, too, but work got in the way. :(

Ellie and I met up with Mom afterwards at the Audubon Aquarium, though. Fun there, dinner at the hotel, and off to bed.

Day 4:
Just enough time to pack things up and head out the airport for a wonderful flight home - despite bad seats. Ellie played with our neighbors on the plane then slept the last hour of the flight home. The drive back to the house was pretty rough, though! Ellie decided she'd had enough of this travel stuff and hollered the whole way home. But when we finally made it home, she was extatic! For the next 2.5 hours, she played with every single toy we own. SOOO happy to see all of toys!

All in all, a wonderful first plane trip for Ellie!!