Tuesday, June 30, 2009

No Time For Homework, Gotta Go Fishing!

Gilbert got a little gift from his grandparents. My dad, spent last week on a fishing trip and in preparation sent Gilbert the shirt he wearing in the picture.

Everyone Is A Critic

I just had my annual performance review. I actually enjoy this process as it helps me truly identify what I do well along with focusing on what really needs improvement.

What I always find interesting is the wide range of the comments received from my internal clients - the partners - and which represents the essence of what is the challenge in what I do...setting and meeting expectations on an individual basis despite the overall similarities in every project.

I have some that feel I'm "first rate" and "upbeat". My favorite comment is... "If we could clone him, I think the firm would benefit greatly." My wife might disagree!

At the same time, there are some that are less enthusiastic noting my "carelessness", my poor "work ethic", and my absolute favorite comment "...displays exasperating mediocrity". Nice.

So, my goals for the new year are to investigate cloning technology and find a way to be less irritatingly mediocre! Wish me luck!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Down Dog

Gilbert decided to work on his yoga poses this weekend during bathtime.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Adam's Park

Saturday morning was an awesome day so we were out early and at a 'hidden gem' park, as Kristen calls it.

Decked out in his new Golden Eagles shirt, Little man ran around until he was nearly falling asleep in the swing.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Running Loose

Last week the carpets in the hallway were cleaned. While drying, paper walkways were provided. Still present a few days later, Gilbert particularly enjoyed running up and down them. This particular video was taken early in the morning, so I'm sure the neighbors appreciated hearing Gilbert's feet scampering across the paper.

Thursday, June 25, 2009


Playing in the park on Father's Day, Gilbert took to the stairs. He holds on to the rail when walking, but he took his first step (as far as I'm aware) without support. Check it out. A bit wobbly he recovered nicely!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Home Sick

Little Man was home today from school. He's not slept well the past two nights and with a bad cough, Kristen took him in to the doctor's. She had some appointments so I came home for the afternoon. He slept long and hard for his nap and upon waking seemed like his usual self.

In just the past few days, he's found a new use for his buddy Porter.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Father's Day, The Follow Up

Sunday afternoon we met up with family at Aunt Katie's apartment. The cool part was both Kristen's dad and grandpa were there as well. So Gilbert got to hang with his grandfather and great grandpa. Cool, huh!

Little Man enjoyed running around the apartment and playing with the family dog, Reggie. Oh yeah, Gilbert has discovered pockets. He was walking around with hands buried with that observing look. Hard to explain, but you know what I mean. He'd walk in a room, stop, look around, give a little accepting sound, and then move on to the next room. I did capture a picture of him in the kitchen so here you go.

Fun Pictures At The Park

After Gilbert's haircut Saturday morning, we spent some time at the park. It was beautiful out and we captured some fun photos. Enjoy.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

Here's a shout out to all the father's out there! Happy Father's Day! I had a wonderful weekend spending time with my family and also doing something for myself, playing golf!
I thought it would be fun to compare pictures of Gilbert from this father's day and last years. Look at the differences!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Big Boy Haircut

We gave up paying money to get Gilbert a haircut a long time ago. The experience was miserable for all involved and besides, kids' hair is always messed up anyway!

Kristen has been snipping here and there to make Little Man look presentable, but the time had come to venture back out for the trusted shears of a professional. Instead of going to a kid-friendly establishment, we went old school. Gilbert received a cut from my barber.

In my neighborhood is a family barber shop run by two sisters in their mid-twenties that learned from their father. He was truly old school! Anyway, I've been going to them for awhile and they continually give me grief for not having brought Gilbert in for a visit. Well, beware what you ask for!

I made an appointment for Saturday so Gilbert could get a big boy haircut!

Knowing Gilbert takes awhile to warm up to a new surrounding we arrive a few minutes early so he could soak in the place. Shy at first, he did eventually get comfortable and that was the green light for the trimming of Little Man's hair.

What a fantastic experience! Lexi, the one who cuts my hair, was great with Gilbert and Little Man did not shed a tear. He wasn't exactly all smiles, but he sat in my lap and let her give him a good make over! He'd turn his head when she asked and by the time it was all done, he was offering high fives!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Father's Day At Gilbert's School

Thursday was "Dad's Day" at Montessori. That meant all the dads could come hang out with their kids. I had been looking forward to this day all week. I've felt as if I've been on the periphery of Gilbert and school. This was finally my opportunity to get to know his teachers, see his room, and watch him interact.

Interact. Funny. All Little Man did was stuff his face with food. Each family was asked to bring in some food to share. We brought pineapple. Excuse me, "Pappple". Well, he ate his share of that along with pizza, crackers, waffle cookies, and more. He'd take his plate over to the food, load it up, walk it back (I find it amusing to watch how carefully he walks to keep his plate level and balanced!), pull out his chair, sit down and fill up.

I figured after the second trip he would be done and then Gilbert would be interested in showing me his 'work'. Uh, no. A third, fourth, and fifth trip to the food ensued. We will definitely be taking him to the all you can eat buffets! I had to take the plate away just to get him to stop! Plate not needed, he started to pick off food one at a time. This was getting out of hand!

Finally I distracted him enough to show me the room and his cubby station. After such a large meal, he took me to the 'reading chair' where he plopped down with a good book and read for a few minutes.

I'd show you pictures, but all you would see is Gilbert jamming pizza squares in his mouth!

I finally did get to talk with Gilbert's teachers and they said he is ready for potty training. I guess when the kids are taking into the bathroom, he trots on in, points to his man stuff and wants to sit on the toilet. He even showed me how he flushes the toilet, and then walks over to the little peoples sink, turns on the water, gets his soap, washes his hands, dries off, and then disposes of the towel in the garbage. So cool!

Well, he might be ready, but his parents are not!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Hangover

Yep, saw the movie. Kristen and I caught a matinee yesterday. It was indeed a funny movie! I must admit, it wasn't the sidesplitting affair I was expecting. What made the movie funny was the premise and the situation, not the one liners. In fact, that was what was different. There weren't any. It is not an instantly quotable movie. And maybe that is what made it good and funny.

And the storyline was actually good. And plausible. It was definitely worth seeing. Mike Tyson did a good job and Heather Graham added to the movie (and still managed to show some boob). And yes, guys would enjoy the movie more than women!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Dinnertime Cleanup

Gilbert is an excellent helper. He's great with picking up his toys, putting his dirty clothes in the hamper, placing his shoes in the closest and even likes to take out the garbage. Oh yeah, our dry cleaner is on the first floor of our condo, and when I say "Let's go see Mr. Dry Cleaning Man," I better mean it, because Little Man is in full gear putting his shoes on and ready to go out the door. He gets mad if I don't let him drag my dry cleaning bag down the hall, to the elevator, across the lobby and on the sidewalk to the dry cleaner. I need to get that on film!

Still my favorite is how he insists on putting his dirty plate in the dishwasher!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Fun Time At Dinner

I'm using a few vacation days this week to detox from work. The best part is I get to spend extra time with Gilbert - drop off and pick up from school as well. He continues to talk more and his words as well as recognition of questions, commands, etc. continues to expand.

When Gilbert wants something now and in response to a question, we get a quick, "YEAH!" I just think it is funny.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


I decided not to go to Omaha. It was a tough decision and I waited until the bitter end, but as I write this I'm glad I didn't go. USM might go on and with the whole thing, but I would have only seen the first game (maybe the second) and having witnessed the game live, I would have been ticked.

USM was a heavy underdog going into the CWS. We knocked off two #1 seeds, including #8 nationally ranked Florida, to get to Omaha. The lowest seed, USM played Texas (#1 in the nation) for its opener. The team showed no fear and played well. Both teams fought hard and after 5 innings the score was tied 2-2. The game went back and forth the remaining innings with USM taking a 5-4 lead late. And that is where the pain started. 1 out bases loaded, and up 5-4 they failed to get another run across that inning. Immediately following they allowed Texas back in the game with walks and then walked in the tie run and perhaps the lead run (my rage over the game has clouded my judgement!). Down 1 run, they can back to tie it, again! Only to give it up in the bottom of the ninth. Again, by loading the bases with two walks and a hit batsman. The USM reliever threw 8 straight balls to end the game and walk in the winning run.

If I had been at the game, I would have been incredibly pissed. Yeah, sure, great to be there, but to lose on a bases loaded walk-in. That would have been the breaking point. With the game over, the cameras panned the crowd and to see the USM fans writhing in pain, angst, and disappointment was all to evident. I can only imagine the drive back having been witness to that game. Instead, I swore loud for a few minutes, turned the television off in disgust and moved on.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

A Night Out With Adults

Sorry for what will be late posts. Decided to unplug from technology for a few days!

On Saturday, Kristen and I did our annual pilgrimage to Ravinia. An outdoor concert venue, we go each year with friends to hear the BoDeans. Not sure who the BoDeans are? Think Party of Five and the theme song and there you go. Of course, that is my least favorite song. No one knows for sure when it all started, but we've gone the last seven years! Brian and Kristina (couple on the right) started the trek and we joined soon after.

For us, Ravinia is awesome! We hop the train north and get dropped off in front of the gates. No worries about parking, the fees, or worrying about driving after having too much to drink! Ravinia has a pavilion and then loads of grass seating with excellent sound. In fact, we've never actually seen the band, we just hear them as we chat, drink, and eat.
Between the three couples you can count 6 kids so it was fun to be kid-free for an evening and just relax. Already looking forward to next year!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


My alma mater is going to the College World Series. First time ever! And I can't get anybody to go with me. Pathetic! I'm offering a free trip and still no takers.

I'm getting excuses like, "work", "kids", and my favorite, "I have surgery on Monday". Likely excuse.

I'm this close (picture me with my thumb and forefinger ever so slightly separated) from getting in the car and driving out there myself!

Stay tuned...

A Night Out

And on a weekday! Yep, we went to a Sox game with our friend Eric and his new ladyfriend, Jen.

What did we do with Gilbert? He's a big boy, right? Well, just a precaution Aunt Katie graciously agreed to condo-sit for us. Thanks, Katie!

Now, this time we did take the camera, but failed to snap a photo. So, just imagine us drinking a beer and eating a brat as we watched the Sox lose to Detroit (Eric is a Tiger's fan so he was a happy guy!).

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Polar Bear at the Zoo

Waiting for his breakfast, Gilbert decided to amuse himself by doing a few laps in the condo.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Rough Crossing

On one of the walls in Gilbert's room is a quilt my mom made for Kristen. With Gilbert's love of crane's and construction, Gram made a construction site quilt. Recently, Gilbert wants to stand on the changing table and point to all the different vehicles on the quilt. Time to bring it down we decided.

This decision left a blank wall. And that is not acceptable in Kristen's home! Over the Memorial Day weekend we were in MI visiting and Kristen brought back a road sign she STOLE back in her high school days. Yes, I'm married to a petty larcenist!

It is a cool sign though. I thought it would be more appropriate over our bed, but that idea was vetoed (for many reasons). Gilbert is in the stage where he wants to do or mimic everything I do. At one point during the sign hanging, he was up on the stool with me supervising. He is getting so big, so fast! And as for new stages, he's entered the cheesey grin for the camera phase as well!
When I was taking pics of the sign, the flash was on the first time, and considering the sign is reflective, I got this cool picture!

Sunday, June 7, 2009


That was Kristen's time this morning from the Run for Lincoln Park 5K. I'd show you pictures, but, well, I forgot the camera!

Back in our single dating days we would run this race every year. It has been a few years since, but Kristen wanted/needed some motivation so she signed up. I think her expectations were higher, but being sidelined with a sinus infection the past week put a damper on running. Still, her goal was 33 minutes and she beat it.

Way to go Kristen!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Birthday Fun

On Sunday we were in the 'burbs celebrating a birthday party for some friends 1 year old. Great weather abound, we were outside the entire time. One family brought over a miniature bouncy ball pit.

I wasn't sure how Gilbert would take to it. He can be fickle when it comes to his space being violated or being knocked around by other kids. How wrong was I! He loved it. Couldn't get him out. Seriously, Little Man spent most of the day rolling around!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Garbage Truck

Garbage pickup. Occupied Gilbert for at least five minutes watching the workers do their thing. He waved to the them, banged on the window, was yelling all to no avail! So Little Man opted just to sit and watch.

Monday, June 1, 2009


Kristen bought some new lampshades for the bedroom. Enthralling, I know! Now Gilbert has a new toy!