Fluffhead

Arlo’s first Thanksgiving happened a few days ago. We spent the afternoon at a friend’s house with lots of joyous people mixing, mingling, and drinking endless amounts of wine and keg beer. Arlo got passed around from person to person like a mid-value bottle of whiskey. At one point I looked over and he was being held by one our friends- a lovely millennial named Kale who was wearing a cowboy hat with a beautiful floral dress and a magnificent gold sequined jacket- his skin adorned with tattoos of a badminton racket, a shuttlecock, and a folded pocket knife. I can only hope that this will be the most traditional thanksgiving that Arlo ever has.

Sequins + Shuttlecocks

He did great with all the strangers and hoopla. He had a couple sad face breakdowns due to missed naps and wet diapers but all in all we were mostly just asked, “Is this kid always this chill?” He even disappeared into the kitchen where I heard he was dancing and wooing all the ladies. I, on the other hand, turned into the same shade of the couch and tried to camouflage myself into its pattern so no one would see me and try to make conversation. Call me anti-social but… well… that’s it, just call me anti-social.

Arlo, however, is becoming very social. He just talks and squawks all day long. Him and I go back and forth like we are having a conversation about the state of the nation. (it sounds pretty much the same as the ones they have on the television)

 

And he has started eating real food! I don’t know why I’m exclaiming this because it really just means two things:

  1. It takes forever to feed him now. Not only am I still feeding him bottles, but then in-between we are trying to eat purees. He has had bananas, peas, sweet potatoes, lentils, carrots and this list goes on. Spoon feeding him is quite time consuming and messy. His face usually ends up looking like he slipped face-first into a pile of vomit.
  2. And number two? It means his number twos stink- like human shit. Gone are the good ol’ days of wonderful cute breast milk poo poos that didn’t smell or make you want to open a window. Yup, that little thing has turned rotten and now makes his room smell like a dirty train station bathroom in Jerez, Spain. (Very specific and random comparison I know, but you’ve probably never seen the bathroom in the train station in Jerez)

So our days are filled with eating and stinking, going for walks and having lots of talks. He likes to stand and hold onto the windowsill and look out for what seems like hours (it’s really only minutes). We also practice sitting. He can sit on his own but he topples over sporadically and often so I stay close to catch his gigantic head. Speaking of gigantic I don’t even know how to describe the fat rolls this kid has now. I mean really, I thought they were big before but his rolls now seem to be redefining the the rules of human physiology. If you saw his arms you might think I put tight rubber bands up and down them.

Arlo will be seven months old on Tuesday. That means I’ve been a 3-day-a-week stay at home dad now for four months- holy crap! And let me tell you… it’s hard work. You know the movie Mr. Mom? You know how at the end of the day Michael Keaton finally gets the kids to bed and has a break and you feel absolutely exhausted for him? mr.momThat’s me at the end of the day. And I only do it with one kid! Only three days a week! And so far he’s a pretty easy kid! I cannot- CANNOT imagine what this is like with two, three, four kids. I guess you just get used to it and figure it out?

I mean he’s only one kid, and he doesn’t even move on his own yet, he just sits around absorbing every little new thing. If we are looking out the window and a few leaves flutter, it’s absolutely amazing to him. He can stare at the dog and smile forever. The whisk and spatula that we play with everyday, are amazing and new everyday. mushyIt’s like I’m taking care of someone who dropped a massive amount of psilocybin mushrooms- I don’t care to stare at the wood grain on the windowsill, but I know how mind-blowing it must look to him- so I don’t pull him away because I don’t want him to have a bad trip.

It’s like this kid lives at a Phish concert. He just sits around and stares while his mouth makes unintelligible sounds and drools onto his food stained shirt. The music that we listen to is as repetitive as a Phish song- it just keeps going on and on. These songs are supposed to be good for his developing brain, but they turn mine to mush- and they get stuck deep in my head. If you come visit me at the bar and watch me make some cocktails chances are I have this song stuck in my head and I’m shaking to it…

I like to aete, aete, aete, aepples & baenanenaes,

I like to eat, eat, eat, epples & benenees

I like to oat, oat, oat, opples & bononos

oatmeal

As hard and mind-numbing bringing this kid up is, it is very rewarding- and I love it. I love seeing him in his crib when he wakes up in the morning- all wide eyed and ready for the day. I love to watch his arms flap with excitement over something as simple as a spatula. I love that right now I am sitting on the floor in the hallway watching him be by himself in a room laying on a yoga mat- and he’s just squealing and squawking away for no other reason other than he likes the way it sounds. I am profoundly grateful that I have a work schedule that allows me to stay at home and facilitate his introduction to the world. I get to show him what my version of the world is and what his can be- and as you can probably tell by this blog- it’s pretty damn weird. Oh crap, he just saw me- gotta go…

MarshmArlo

Arlo is three months old now. His fresh newborn scent is slowly giving way to a faint Dorito aroma if we don’t keep his fat rolls clean. My new favorite roll is the one on his neck- the back of his neck that is, he has a roll on the back of his neck. On top of that fluffernutter neck sits his enormous ever-expanding head- but the hair on top  has not increased with his growth so it seems to be thinning a bit. His posture is terrible and can only be described as “hunched.” He pretty much looks like a miniature version of famed muralist Diego Rivera…

Diego Rivera Standing in Front of Painting

But his smile is so damn cute! It just makes me want to pinch his cheeks and sweep under his neck roll for crumbs and spoiled milk! That’s right, Arlo smiles now- like for real- and coos like a baby. Sure, most of his time is still spent looking pretentious and judgmental, but at least now we know he possesses properly developed muscles that can smile.

Oh- and for all you out there who couldn’t wait for me to eat my words with a shovel- he cries now too. Yes He Cries! He’s a real baby- with fully developed crying lungs- I mean he doesn’t cry a ton, but he doesn’t hesitate to let us know if something is wrong. And man can he be a real fussy bus when he’s tired.

Other than that, he’s just a baby. I’m not sure if there have been any real milestones to speak of. Well, he did pee on his own face. Yeah, my brother was real eager to change his diaper and lifted his butt up maybe a little too high- I mean, it was a real disgusting shit storm down there and we got distracted looking at all of it. Then Kylie walked in and yelled at us because he was peeing on his face. That is the true story of Arlo’s first golden shower.

My brother also gave Arlo a new nickname. Do you remember the movie Ghostbusters? Do you remember the giant Stay Puft Marshmallow Man? He terrorized New York? Arlo has taken on his features with his puffy body shape and rolls. Ladies and gentleman, introducing for the first time… MarshmArlo…

staypuftmarshmarlo copy

Sorry buddy, your papa’s a dick.

In other news, Kylie had to go back to work- which means this dickhole papa is in charge of this MarshmArlo, all by myself, three days a week. My dream of being Mr. Mom has finally happened. I have been waiting for this to happen for years and years and now it’s here.

I remember having  fantasies of having so much time for myself as a stay at home dad, because how much time can a kid who can’t even roll over take up? Turns out they take up almost every second of your time! Even when he is napping I keep my fingers crossed that he will continue sleeping so I can clean up the trail of destruction that I left behind while he was awake- washing dirty bottles, picking up burp cloths everywhere, making new bottles, finding dirty diapers I left out, washing my own dishes, picking up my own clothes, DON’T WAKE UP YET- washing diapers, washing his clothes, refilling his ass wipes, making sure the dog did not find the dirty diaper I missed- basically I try to make the house look like I know what I’m doing so when Mama comes home she can see she doesn’t have to worry.

As hard as our first week home with just each other has been, it’s also been fun too. We’ve gone out on adventures together like walks in the woods and to the park. One day he came to work with me, then we went to the art museum, then we went to get a kombucha, then we went to Rock n’ Rudy’s, then we went to the grocery store. And sometimes we slip in somewhere for an afternoon beer- only because the smell of brewing beer calms Arlo down- I do it for him.

Now that he’s beginning to be a little more baby-y with his smiles and coos I expect to have more things to write about so there may not be so much lag time between posts. This three month old may look like Diego Rivera, and he may be puffy like a marshmallow man, but that’s how I like him, because he’s my new best friend…

Arlocito