Time

Arlo turned fifteen months old yesterday- that’s right, fifteen- One Five. Which isn’t really all that old-  but if you ask me it feels like he’s been around a lot longer. In fact, I honestly don’t remember what my life was like before he was around. I do remember I used to drink a cup of coffee for the first two hours of my morning while looking out the window as the neighbor mowed his lawn (Routine). But what else did I do with my time? Really! What did I do with my time? I used to have a lot of it- like an abundance of it- truckloads of it- like if time was money, then I used to make it rain all day and all night.

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I honestly wish I could go back in time and arrest myself for time mismanagement- or at least punch myself in the throat and tell myself not to be such an idiot with my time. And what’s up with the gold chains I used to wear- what ever happen to those?

Time feels different now- it goes by so fast… but so slow just the same. The day to day seems somewhat monotonous with not much happening but then I look back a week or two and all of a sudden I have a kid that is walking- full on walking and running away from me- Often I look up to see a poop-smeared-bare-ass running away from me in the middle of a diaper change. When did that happen? He used to just lay there and enjoy a change- now he flips and hees and haws and I have to perform a diaper change like I’m a championship midget wrestler- I mean I have to be- the kid is semi-professional now- which makes me a super proud Papa.

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Don’t worry, the tattoo is not real- he just uses it for the show. (No real tattoos until he’s 12 years old- I’m strict on that)

So… um… yeah… thanks for letting me pull you into my gutter fantasy for a moment… but, yeah, he’s walking now- full tilt. I think last time I wrote he was dragging himself around like a sloth- he went from that to some fancy knee crawling for a moment- but then we took him out of town and away from his wheelie bug walkers for a weekend and he just started walking- that was Father’s Day weekend. Now he’s unstoppable- no holds bar.

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Last week I unknowingly gave him his last bottle ever- which I am super sad about. Apparently you are supposed to ween kids off the bottle sometime around now for the sake of their growing teeth. Anyway, we went out of town for a long weekend and disrupted our usual bottle routine so he didn’t have one for a few days- which meant it was a good time to just continue the absence of the bottle. Unfortunately, for me, it was my favorite time of the day (except for nap time). It was the one time that him and I could curl up together on the couch- He’d calm down and we’d quietly cuddle while he drank his warm bottle before nap time. Sometimes if I was lucky he would fall asleep on me. Gone now are those days and I didn’t even get to say goodbye. (Insert tear here)

He’s just growing up so fast! (insert another tear here)

He’s even actively communicating now. We’ve been teaching him American Sign Language since he was around nine months old and in the past couple months he has started signing back. He started out saying “more” (which for him just means ‘I want’). His signing vocabulary has expanded to water, airplane, milk, strawberry, cheese, bird, nap time, food/eat, and he signed “dog” today. He signs fishy to me when he wants sardines- his all time favorite food. If prompted, he can also point to his belly, his noggin and Mazzy- and if he’s hanging out with his pants off he can point to his peener- I don’t know who taught him that.

Don’t worry though, he’s not any kind of super child though. He still shits his pants on a regular basis- often twice a day. He also has a terribly annoying scream when he is not getting what he wants. He is horrible at car rides and he turns into a bowed wooden plank when I am trying to put him in his carseat. When he has a tooth coming in he can be a real whiney pain in the ass. And to top it off, sometimes he wakes up with boogers stuck to his forehead. So he still has some work to do.

IMG_5541-ANIMATION.gifI don’t know what else to say. His favorite thing to do right now is to walk through the garden and pick ripe strawberries and raspberries- in fact, we were just visiting his grandparents in Idaho and he had a wonderful time picking huckleberries with them. He also loves to terrorize Mazzy. He likes to hang out and look at books- His favorite right now is Cuddly Dudley. He likes to dance to music and clap his hands. He’s becoming something real now, not just a baby that does baby things, but a toddler that does toddler things. He’s becoming a real boy… and it’s happening so fast.

 

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Case

I lost two small pocket knives in the span of a week. One was confiscated at the airport because they thought I would use it to make tiny stabs in people on the airplane. The other knife fell out of my pocket somewhere in between home and work. Neither had any sentimental value to me, they were just small tools I liked to carry around to assist me with little jobs that require a little knife. Mind you, I’m not the guy that likes to carry around a big knife to show off how much of a man I am- quite the opposite actually- those kinds of guys like to make fun of me and my little knife.

So I needed a new knife. Sure, a custom made one by a local craftsman would have been nice, but considering my track record with the last two I decided I should opt for a cheaper mass produced knife. So off to Cabela’s I went. Whenever I go to Cabela’s I always expect there to be a camouflaged man at the door to stop me and say, “Hey, you aren’t a hunter, maybe you should go to REI instead”. But, he wasn’t there, and I walked right in.

Cabela’s had a great selection of knives! (I swear they are not sponsoring me). They had everything from Rambo knives to machetes to small pocket sizes that fit my personality. As I was looking in the knife cases Gary approached me and told me about a real deal, three knives for $10. I let him lead me that way but I didn’t have great expectations on quality- they ended up being a random camouflaged set of three that had the Cabela’s logo on them. I imagined the blade getting dented as soon as I tried to cut a piece of tape. I thanked Gary and told him I would keep looking.

As I looked over the knives on the wall I realized I wasn’t buying a knife just for me, but a knife that one day I could give to Scout. I remember my dad gave me a knife when I was a kid, just a simple no frills folding pocket knife with a yellowish handle. It was small and had a timeless look to it, unlike all the fancy springy and edgy designed ones out there today. I think I carried it around for a year or two before I lost it. You didn’t think I still had it did you?

My eyes finally rested on a small orange and silver folding knife with a small oval logo on it that read Case. This was the one, I thought, this is the one I’m going to give Scout one day. It had the classic look that reminded me of the one my dad gave me. Gary told me it was forty dollars and when I told him I wanted it he shot me a look that said, I just showed you three knives for ten dollars but you’re gonna get this little one for forty dollars instead? I immediately shot him back a more pronounced look that said, Keep your thoughts to yourself Gary and just sell me the damn knife.

Admittedly, I wasn’t planning on spending forty dollars for a pocket knife. It was a bit more than I had planned- but for a family heirloom? That’s pretty cheap if you ask me. (I used this same justification when I bought my truck- I told Kylie, “Just imagine, one day our first born will drive this”- that was way before Scout was in the picture.) As Gary boxed up the family heirloom he told me I could save twenty dollars just by signing up for a Cabela’s credit card. I told him I didn’t need another credit card. Gary insisted that I did, and it would only take a couple of minutes. A couple of minutes? I’ve got that kind of time…

Twenty-five minutes later I was finally walking out the door with our new knife, some paperwork, a credit card, and a ball cap that read Cabela’s Club. During that twenty-five minutes of frustration, I had a lot of time to think. My mind wandered to the movie Pulp Fiction. Specifically the scene where Christopher Walken’s character is describing to the kid how he hid the watch up his ass for years, just so he could give it to him when he got home…

captainkoonsThe way your dad looked at it, this watch was your birthright. He’d be damned if any slopes gonna put their greasy yellow hands on his boy’s birthright, so he hid it, in the one place he knew he could hide something: his ass. Five long years, he wore this watch up his ass. Then when he died of dysentery, he gave me the watch. I hid this uncomfortable piece of metal up my ass for two years. Then, after seven years, I was sent home to my family. And now, little man, I give the watch to you. 

Suddenly this pocket knife didn’t feel too significant as an heirloom. The only story I had to tell Scout was about my twenty-five minute wait to save twenty dollars. I guess I can dramatize it and tell Scout, “But it was a long twenty-five minutes”. I can also tell Scout how pushy over-the-hill Gary was. Not too exciting though.

I suppose I could hide the knife up my ass just for a good ol’ family heirloom story, but I don’t know who I’d be hiding it from. It would probably be a good idea to do so though, because most likely I will lose the knife before Scout is even born- that’s what Kylie thinks- and she’s usually right about that type of stuff.

As a matter of fact, yesterday we were tearing apart some boxes in the garage. I was working on a particularly difficult one and Kylie asked me if I needed a knife. I looked up and in her outstretched hand rested my new orange pocket knife. “Where did you get that?” I asked. She smiled with a twinkle in her eye, “I found it on the floor”.