15 Months

  • I’ve been doing a lot of solo Jasper care since Stina’s been working evenings and weekends, along with the household plague thats been haunting us for the past few weeks. I’m rather intimidated by the idea of entertaining the little nutball for 3-4 hours in a row. You have to constantly distracting him from whatever terrible idea he concocts.  He’s unaware of the dangers of pretty much everything, likes to get most things in his mouth, and has no concept at all what a bathroom is. In my old life, that time would be filling with dicking around, watching movies, computery goodness, and more sweet dickery. The time NEVER flies by. When I reflect upon these days, there’s often a moment or two that was really amusing or special. It probably makes it all worth it. I’m aware that I won’t regret it in the long run. We’re particularly bonded right now. Now might not be the perfect time to leave him for two weeks, but really, when is?

  • I often find feeding JBalls to be very stressful. I’ve been observing Stina during meals, and have picked up that what I’m really lacking is patience. Just cause he initially rejects everything doesn’t mean all is lost. Sometimes he’ll get around to eating those dreaded vegetables. Or not.  Theres always the potential for cheese in the future. Possibly words to live by.

  • Rocking your half awake baby back to sleep at 5am is totally awesome when you only have to do it once a month. Whoohoo for not having an infant anymore.
  • Its fun to see the little guy keep hitting plateaus. There’ll be a stretch of days or weeks with little change, and then BAM, new behavior. New words appear out of nowhere.  Where it took us 6+ months to teach JBalls to sign “more”, he learned “please” in a week. The learning train seems to be accelerating.

  • Tantrums also seem to be on the rise. This kid is so strong, I’m worried that he’s going hurt himself with his arching and flailing. You never know which Jasper you’ll get when he wakes up. We roll the dice three times a day. Sometimes life gives you whammies.
  • I’ve never known such joy from bubbles or a blanket. As of now, I rather enjoy being a human jungle gym. That, I’m sure, will be fleeting.
  • I went though another spurt where I was obsessed with coding for my website and working on music. There were also several bouts of insomnia. One night, I ended up getting out of bed at 3am and coded for a couple hours. Stina asked whether I wanted to work on my website or I needed to. I was unable to answer that question, and after pondering it for a couple days, I’m still not sure.
  • We got a bike attachment for Jasper, and now we have access to the enormous playground of the Berkeley campus.
  • My mom came out for a visit, which was excellent. Up next is the Rudden invasion for a 3 weeks. Of course, Stiners and I will be absent for 16 days of that as we valiantly attempt to make nice with the Swiss.
  • The continued existence of the ball pit establishes Stina’s boundless love for Jasper. Picking up 50 balls from all over the living room multiple times a day is apparently a small price for Jaspers happiness. I’m pretty stoked that it just went into hibernation.
  • I had my final recording sessions for my next album. It’s really coming together, and the drive to finish it is making an unwelcome appearance. I’m doing my best to quell the beast, but it’s sitting shotgun in my frontal lobe, and its got a riding crop.
  • Once again, I’m really trying not to take my health, family, and friends for granted. I’m so freaking lucky. Not everybody gets to drink from the fire hose.


There can be only ONE!

Little JBalls is no longer 0 years old. This has been, by far, the longest 365+ days of my life. His too, by definition. The transformation from oppressive larvae to little boy has been astonishing. I now belong to the not-so-exclusive club of people who have experienced the magic of watching a child become aware of the world around them. The dues are pretty steep, but membership has its privileges.

I’ve learned I could operate on much less sleep then I imagined I could. I now see both danger and wonder in every new environment. Silly noises consistently punctuate most of my actions. I’ve never done so much dancing in my living room before. My life is basically not recognizable to my pre-child self. It’s not like I can’t remember what my life was like with out him, but I can’t imagine my life without him. The thought of leaving him for two weeks (which I will do this summer) makes me feel sad and empty, so I plan on filling that void with delicious alcohol.

Little JBalls now points incessantly. He’s able to comprehend a little bit of what I’m saying. His first word is “dog”, and we hunt them with ease on our street. He will select a favorite book from his box, I will sit down cross legged, he’ll crawl into my lap, and we’ll read it 4 times in a row. He’s very generous with hugs, especially if he hasn’t seen me in 30 minutes. He loves to spin. When he wants to go out side, he fetches his shoes, and sometimes ours as well.

I reached an unrealized parenting milestone when I was talking on the phone and a squealing naked baby came zooming past me.

He also had his first ear infection. This was the first time I heard his serious pain cry. My concern for him was overwhelming. It broke my heart, and I wanted to do everything in my power to make him feel better. After several poor nights of sleep, he woke us at 5:30am, and my very first thought was “thank goodness he let us sleep in an extra half hour”. Thats a thought my old self couldn’t comprehend.

His first birthday party was held at a local park. In typical Krudden fashion, it lasted for 6.5 hours. On his actual birthday, we spent the day trying to make him as happy as possible, and I believe we succeeded. It was a wonderful weekend.

In the last 30 days, we’ve had visitors for 21 of them. Stina’s parents came for almost two weeks, and celebrated Jasper’s birthday with us. It was a great visit, Stina and I caught up on some sleep, and the house now has a built in spice rack. We got out to see Trey Anastasio at the fox with Rachel. We even had a funtastic night out sans JBalls in Sausilto. I took the ferry out from San Fran after work for gorgeous view of the fog rolling over the GG bridge, met up with Stiners, and begin raging when my feet were on solid ground. We were asleep in our hotel by 9pm.
Tom came in for quick visit from Seattle. Gail and Dan flew in from Maui for a education conference, and they stayed for a few days at our place. I got an opportunity to talk with Gail about Graham’s passing, and that re-opened some pretty intense feelings of loss. There was a 45 minute window when Gail and Dan left and my sis-in-law appeared from Boston. Then Dr. Doug  joined us the next day. I do love me some visitors. JBalls takes a while to warm up to all these strange people.

And Haber learned to point too!

I’ve put in some hours in my studio on some general fuzz tunes as well. I had my first recording session with a professional classically trained vocalist, Phoebe Alexander. That was a pretty fascinating experience. She notated the music I send her to listen to, and proceeded to hit some wicked high notes. Color me impressed.


Intense Beginnings

  • Shortly into the new year we learned that a friend from college, Graham, died. It came out of nowhere, and I was completely unable to process it. This a friend we’ve known for 14 years. He lives on the east coast. We see him once or twice a year. He was literally one of the two smartest people I’ve ever known – like genius level. He was also warm, laid back, and quick to smile.  He really made an effort in our friendship. I can’t believe he’s gone. Since we don’t see him on a day to day basis, it has been especially hard to process. We had just seen him four months ago, and were talking about the next stages of his life.  I’m all too aware that I have a difficult time processing and expressing emotions, but this was so far off the charts that I couldn’t even compute what was going on. The universe is far worse off without Graham in it. Eventually, I shifted from obsessing about Grahams life, to the abruptness of death, which brought on a host of new issues to struggle with. I was unable to sleep for more then 5 hours a night for more then two weeks.
  • A few weeks into January we made a whirlwind trip down to LA to visit Dave and Keri before they pop out a little dudette. Jasper + their cats = endless entertainment. I dictated that we make an Oinkster and Dave’s Chillin and Grillin stop. When went to Dave’s C+G, in a moment of adventureness/instanity, I ordered the daily special instead of getting my beloved turkey sandwich. Stina, in an act of love that transends all boundaries, offered to trade sandwiches after she saw the overwhelming sadness / envy on my face. I’m still reeling from this. So much so that it’s dominated my bullet point about the LA trip.

  • My parents came out for an extended visit. By extended, I mean, they couldn’t go home since the eastern part of the country was buried underneath seven hundred feet of snow. It started out well, but slowly devolved into a full on stressy nutbag, bit by bit. Our plans and life did not align properly, and I think everyone was relieved when they got back home.
  • A last minute bonus idea was  to take my mom to a show at Yoshis Oakland – Mediski on keyboard, the guitar player from Living Color, the bass player from Cream, and Sanata’s wife on drums. The first tune was 10 minute free jazz improv, and 5 minutes in I was regretting taking my Mom to such an atontal avante garde show. Fortunately the rest of the show was more structured.  Santana joined in for the encore. Top notch show. I think my Mom enjoyed it. Real good times were also had at Yoshi’s SF with George Clinton + P Funk. There were at least 25 people on stage at once – 5 guitar players. I was so close I got to fist bump Mr. Clinton. Haven’t washed my hand since. Got to have that funk! Unh!
  • After the aforementioned not sleeping and stressful parental visit, I got really sick. I rarely get sick like this, and my body demanded that I sleep like 10 hours a day for a while. I’m still in the recovering stages.

  • I had two excellent recording sessions. Its always a privilege to have Audio Angel in the studio. There were several spine tingling moments during that session. I later discovered that my primary goal of that session did did not turn out the way I had hoped – and have been shocked by my total acceptance of it. I figured out my mistakes and began plotting a new course of action to remedy the situation. Overall, music has been flowing particularly well in the past few weeks which is helping prop up the rest of my life.

  • I attended an awesome workshop with Rena Jones and Asher Fulero (two musicians I’m a huge fan of), where I was reminded that I’m a total amateur at music production. This isn’t terribly upsetting. I’m simply aware theres a lot to learn, and know why my productions don’t sparkle likes theirs do. Good thing I have confidence in my music and, more importantly, a day job.

  • Jasper is a walking machine. He now climbs down our front stairs, walks four houses down, then climbs up our neighbors stairs in search of their cat. Needless to say, we’re meeting more of our neighbors, and freaking out the animals in our path. He says “da” every time we see a dog. He’s constantly bringing us books to read to him. And, if you weren’t in the know, sticks are where its at. Along with yelling.  Nothing beats a stick and yelling sandwich. J-balls has fully transformed from baby to very little boy with insane amounts of energy. It doesn’t look like thats gonna taper any time soon, so, whoohoo.

  • It’s been an intense beginning to 2011, to say the least. Our lives are radically transforming, and we’re trying to grasp how to roll with the changes. We are overwhelmed by whats going on with our families, jobs, friends, social lives, and son. Every once in a while, we stop trying to wrap our heads around it all, and remind each other how lucky we are. That’s usually when I start pining for sex.



  • Since our Chrisnukah plans were thrown in a tizzy by the non-arrival of Stiner’s parents, we made up for it with a hunt for all the east bay baby friendly holiday events. We hit the Tilden merry go round, Fairyland with x-mas lights, and the 4th street lights. While we were really impressed by our inaugural trip to fairyland, J-Balls was enamored with a bell, which he rang for a solid 10 minutes, mouth agape, drooling in ecstasy. We hosted orphan x-mas, which to Kerry Jo’s chagrin did not involve actual orphans. Instead, the local Jewish folk with nothing better to do on Christmas joined us for fancy late lunch.
  • Though Jasper seemed to making efforts to walk by early December, in true Krudden tradition, he messed with us by ceasing most walking activity for over a week.  He then made a very last minute decision to become a walker in 2010. At this point, crawling is almost absent in his motion repertoire. He also deposited some mimicking, lots of clapping, and awesome self pillow smothering in the activity bank. He fucking LOVES doors. OMG. Doors are where it’s at. They open. . . .AND CLOSE!
  • Its been cold (for Cali) and raining, so we’ve also been scoping out the indoor baby places. Its turns out by throwing money at the problem, we can take him to these amazing sheltered play spaces that he totally won’t remember going to.
  • I got out to see the final Black Crowes run at the Fillmore. I also caught the pre New Year Furthur hippie festival at the Bill Graham with the old shakedown crew (which they appropriately opened with while our old landlord was chillin with us).  The Krudden clan celebrated NYE by streaming the MSG Phish show, which fit our lifestyle very nicely. Stina charged me 8 bucks for a beer, and I stood outside my bathroom for 10 minutes to make the experience more real. We raged until 1:30 in morning (east coast time). I heart east coast time. And streaming Phish. Enough that we did again the next night.
  • We’re gradually dusting the cob webs off our social life. We had some neighbors over for dinner, and are beginning to transform casual acquaintances into full fledged monkeys. I like monkeys.
  • Jasper really enjoys sucking on long thin things. We practically live in Berkeley, so it’ll work out.
  • Both Stiners and I found that over a recent two week period, we’ve transitioned from being in love with DroolyMcgee to being crazy in love with him. We were surprised to discover that it happened to us both during the same time frame. But there it is. We are no longer entertaining ideas of selling him. Renting may still be an option though.


Music Production Musings 3

Unlike the last two “lessons” post, there is no unifying theme to these ideas. These are just random thoughts that I jotted down over the last year while I was working on tunes. Hopefully you can find something useful in one of these savory thought nuggets.

1. Instant inspiration

When I need to work on something fresh, I’ll take a song that has already been somewhat fleshed out and start a new unrelated song section using the same set of plugins. I might keep a drum part or bass line from the original song to use as an anchor, and I’ll try and build something new in one or two sittings. Since I’m “restricted” to the plugins already in the track, I’ll spend no time patch/plugin hunting. The entire time I’ll just be writing music. It’s most often a cathartic exercise, and occasionally I’ll write something worth keeping. I could either fold this new part back into the original song, or use it independently.

2. Focused song writing

When I’m trying to write a new melody line for a tune, I’ll create a loop in a song section and start jamming. As soon as I play something interesting I’ll stop recording and drop whatever I just played in the section. I’ll tidy up the bad notes and off rhythm, and then play around with the notes in the midi editor. I’m not ashamed to say that I’m an abuser of quantize. I used to just jam on the loop for like 20 minutes and then scrub through the entire recording until I found the interesting ideas. This new approach is way more efficient way to make progress on a song (though maybe not as fun as the endless jam approach). I may do several passes in a section to see if I can create a few different melodies, but I often stick with my first idea and move on.

3. Fermenting

As of late, I’m letting finished songs sit idle for long periods of time – like 6 months to a year – before revisiting them. Then I’ll have fresh ears, and am much more willing to modify (and hopefully improve) the song. Similarly, it’s fun to go through unfinished songs that I haven’t looked at in a while and re-evaluate then. Often I find a single section in one of these songs that I think is strong, and throw the rest of it away. I might try to meld this section with other cannibalized song sections. I love the challenge of trying to connect two unrelated song sections together – transposing sections to related keys and trying to find a way to make interesting transitions from one section to another.

4. The hustle

The vast majority of opportunities for your art are not handed to you on a silver platter. When there’s a musician I want to rope into playing on a track, a producer that I really want to meet, or whatever – I find a way to make the connection happen. It’s showing up to gigs early or staying late after a show to make an introduction. It’s knowing when a person of interest is going to be at a place and finding them. It requires good timing, confidence, humility, and friendliness. Like anything important, there’s the risk of failure. In the long run, you rarely regret trying, where you will almost always regret not trying.

5. The whole story behind the music

I recently had a recording session with a violin player that I thought went really well. Upon reviewing the material, I found that I wasn’t happy with the way things were recorded – the phrasing and dynamics of the recorded parts didn’t sit well with me. I initially got depressed since I thought I had wasted my time. Later, I remembered that the recording session was necessary to clarify what I wanted the violin parts to sound like. I’m confident that during subsequent sessions, I’ll record the parts the way I want them. I’ve been through this experience many times. It just takes a lot of time and patience. Listeners to my music have no idea how many failures and changes I made to these songs before they hear them. Moreover, they don’t care (and I don’t blame them), much like you don’t care about the many edits I made to this post. Looking back, I don’t remember the painstaking hours I spent obsessively tweaking my tracks.

6. Letting tunes ferment

When I released my last album (Soulful Filling), it was the first time I had no lingering doubts about a release. Almost two years later, I still feel the same way, which is sort of astonishing. I know I’m not going to be able to do it with every release going forward, but I now know it’s a goal worth pursuing. Currently I have a dozen or so tracks taking shape with a similar enough vibe, so I started mentally assembling the track order of a new album. When I looked at what would comprise the next album, I knew that I wasn’t going to feel as good about it as I had about Soulful Filling. So I removed any tracks that I had doubts about from the track list. I can always release them as bonus tracks. Of course this advice could easily be taken too far. There’s no need to be paralyzed by quest for perfection. The goal of an artist is to constantly grow and improve – so I’m not hoping that this next album is the best album I’ll ever release. My goal is to release something that I believe I will have few regrets about a couple years later. Set your bar high, but not out of reach.

7. Making progress

Previously, I mentioned that I always iterate through tracks to reduce frustration. Another thing to add to that is that when I open a track, I always try to either add or modify something before closing it. This helps me feel like I’m moving it forward, even if I abandon it later. Unless I’m really in the zone working on a song, a music session will last about 20-60 minutes (my free time is pretty limited these days anyways). I’m pecking away at these tunes, but I don’t care. I used to get so lost in my obsession to produce music that I forget I make music because its fun and emotionally fulfilling. Its important to not to lose sight of this.

8. Self mastering

I’ve self mastered all 5 of my albums. I am by no means a mastering jedi – infact, I’m quite an amateur, with almost zero training in the subject. I sent out my second album to get mastered and was totally unsatisfied with the result, so I figured it would be better if I just did it myself. Its a terribly painful and tedious process, and I’m not very good at it either. The best thing about mastering your own tunes is that I inevitably always find mistakes in the mix along the way. This is invaluable. So even if I send out my next album to get mastered by someone who knows what they’re doing, I will always do a first pass so that I can hopefully identify all the mistakes in the mix.

9. Ableton Live

Little magical musical accidents sometimes occur in Ableton Live. As soon as I have a set of clips that are working well together, I lay them out in the arrangement view. I’ll create a loop for this section in the arrangement view, and then add new parts back in the session view. By default, the last clip recorded in live will playback when I hit play in the arrangement view. When I move to a different section of a song, the last thing I recorded will automatically (and non-intentionally) play in the new section. Occasionally it will sound inspiring (though never spot on). So I’ll investigate, reorganize the melody and rhythm of the clip so it works in the new section, and BAM, new unintentional part to the song that may even help connect two sections together.

Please let me know if you found any of these useful, or if this post reminded you of other lessons you’ve learned along the way. . .



First Steps

  • Jasper hasn’t changed at all in the last month. Except for the standing on his own, and first steps. Or his rudimentary vocal and physical mimicking. And he leveled up his self feeding skills, which now is at 2. Also, he can drop the shit out of a mouse pad.

  • Instead of embarking on our annual pilgrimage to Yosemite to consort with our hippie brethren, we stayed super local and explored the raging infant Berkeley Halloween scene. Things get crazy before dark. And by crazy, I mean crying.

  • I took a second paternity leave for four weeks, which was full on monkey awesome. Since we have a nanny three days a week (and very well can’t ask the nanny to not show up for a month), I had some serious time to embark on some computer-y and music-y projects. I had a few collaborators over (most notably Josh Clark from Tea Leaf Green), and made some headway on album numero 6. I created an ambitious facebook app, which totally rekindled my love affair with computer programming.
  • We’ve been real tired for the past 7 or so months. Sometime in the past month we hit a breaking point, and decided to give sleep training a go. It took exactly one night to get J-balls to sleep through the night. We’ve been sporadically kicking ourselves in the groin for not doing this sooner.

  • Lets not forget Thanksgiving! That totally just happened.
  • I saw one epic concert with involved Carlos Santana and the East Bay Orchestra. I also took Stiners on a surprise date to see Mummenchanz one afternoon. Its good to get out, occasionally.
  • Looking back, I don’t think there has been a ton of surprises about what life with a baby is like. I feel like the most surprising thing about this “having a child” business has been discovering who Jasper is. He looks and acts nothing like what I imagined (a talking toucan with an afro).
  • The funny thing about weekends is that instead of laying around in bed till noon and puttering around all day, we are up early and are very attentive to this needy little being. It makes every day feel incredibly full. We’ll always fit it at least one outing, and often two, so that we get a little social time in and the all important change of scenery for Jasper. At the end of every single weekend for the past 6 months, Stiners and I look at each other and declare, “wow, what an epic weekend!” Then the spankings commence.



Shedding some Armor

When I was growing up back east, I had a very hard time accepting feedback from other people, especially my parents. I was particularly defensive when it came to my ideas, which was probably to compensate for how emotionally fragile I was. Over the years, I have dialed back this defense mechanism since it turns out that other peoples ideas can be valuable. By which I mean, worth money. For example, Garbage Pail Kids was not an idea I came up with, and that guy was laughing his way to the bank when I was 8 (and deeply defensive).

I’m currently nearing the end of my second paternity leave. This was very different then round 1, since Jasper has developed into a little dude and we have a nanny 3 days a week. Knowing full well that I was going to have some time to work on projects during this leave, I tried to come up with a challenging computer project that would force me to learn some new mad nerd skillz.

The initial idea came to me when I was last in Newton, and I attempted to explain it to my dad. He had some feedback, which I initially rejected. I later mulled over his words and happened upon some shiny useful nuggets which somewhat reshaped my initial idea. This is a hard learned technique I picked up from surviving a long term relationship. More over, I realized I could get more nuggety goodness by sharing my project idea with lots of other people and seeing what they had to say. So for the first time in my life, I actively solicited lots feedback from tech savvy people. The rewards for this approach have been bountiful (in terms of  insightful ideas, not cash). The trick was to be open to all feedback, and take my time evaluating what people had to say. I believe this to be the most valuable thing I’ve learned during developing this web application, which has nothing to do with all the intentional computer learning that I set myself up for.

Now that I’m finished the first pass at this app, I’m really interested in the feedback that my beta testers have to give. Instead of being bruised by negative feedback, I’d like to see if I could use any of this  information to improve the app.

The basic idea behind the app is a general fuzz song unlocker, where people earn the right to unlock bonus songs by promoting my music. It’s  a little ironic to spend so much time and energy building something that I know my fans will actively dislike. Almost all my previous music was free to download before – how could I have the nerve to make people jump through hoops to get new stuff? This is the advantage of being slightly more established then I was a decade ago – there are at least ten people across the globe who are willing to do a little more then nothing to hear unreleased tracks.

I had a relevant conversation with Stina at dinner. She was talking about how amazing our friends wedding website was. When I asked, she admitted that she hasn’t taken the 5 seconds to write them an email telling them how much she liked it. We consume, and rarely provide feedback to those who produce. I’ve already fully come to terms with this behavior. Therefore, I’m trying to incentivize people to take that easy extra step.   It’s an interesting idea which may not work at all. If nothing else, I had a really fun time building the app (I had almost forgotten that I actually enjoy programming), it’s a very solid piece of code that I can add to my resume, and I’ve internalized a valuable life lesson.  That is, money is good.



Who Fathered This Child?

  • Crawling is so last month for Jasper. If he wants to get somewhere, its a non issue. Well, for him anyways. It’s often an issue for us. He spends most of his time standing now. He’s gotten to the point where he can stand on his own for a second or two. He started taking steps while fully erect. Just like daddy.
  • Sometimes I think he’s a freaking genius. He’ll do something like follow me around, imitate me, or find something I hid, and I’m completely stunned. The rest of the time he’s a utter moron, which is good for parental self esteem. He’s unable to get food from his hand to his mouth (unless you count sand as a food, which according to his poop, he sure does), will consistently choke on tiny soft pieces of fruit, and thinks shoes are delicious. He’ll put everything he can in his mouth, except for food. He’s damn stubborn too. Thanks Mom!

  • We’ve finished construction of baby land 1.0. We’re real proud of our baby jail, and spend copious amounts of time sitting in the corner throwing things at his face (much to his delight).
  • We hit a nasty nightime crying jag a few weeks back. It would easily be an hour of crying, multiple times a night. It lasted for about a week, and felt like three and an half months. That sucked monkey balls. Extra hairy monkey balls.
  • Jasper and I started attending “music together” classes, which is not nearly as painful as I imagined. Right after enrolling him in these classes, I read “Parenting, Inc.” which postulated that we are spending way too much money on useless things like music classes for infants. Since I borrowed the book for free from the library, I attempted to rationalize that  it all balances out. J-Balls is seriously engaged during these music sessions. He is completely transfixed by the music duder, quietly drooling all over my leg. Stiners gets a quality nap at home, and I die a little bit for 45 minutes.
  • I’ve been a little less concert deprived then I imagined. I randomly was gifted some very last minute Arcade Fire tickets (which is funny since I’ve seen them many times for free since I used to know the sound board dudette), and cajoled T-Bag to join me. The Kruddens have given the Fox a lot of love as of late too –  the Flaming Lips, Widespread Panic, and Jonsi (of Sigor Ros).
  • We had some bonus quality DaveSG and Erin Crowley time when they returned west for a wedding. Their life is about get real insane, which is par for their course. In fact, a number of our friends announced their state of pregnancy in the past few months, which means they are all having much more sex then I am.
  • Stiners totally tricked me into going to a farm for a harvest festival. I thought we were going to a pumpkin patch. On arrival, we totally bypassed the pumpkin patch and joined a long line of people with small children so that we could pick corn and ogle sheep at the adjoining festival. Fortunately, a number of friends with children joined us on the farm, so we could bond over any feelings we may have had or not had for said sheep.



Best Thank You Card Ever

I’ve always considered my ass to be top notch.




Half Dozen

  • Jasper is 6 months old. The last 6 months felt like 2 years to us. He’s a pre-crawling machine. Thankfully, he’s still a really happy little dude. Just somewhat insane. Wonder where he got that from?
  • Last week, when I got home from work, I walked right past Stiners and Jasper on the way to the livingroom. When I walked out of the room, Jasper started crying. I came back to play with him, and he lit right up. This is how he tricks me into loving him. Manipulative bastard.
  • There was a marked difference travelling across the country with a 2 month old and very active 6 month old. J-balls wasn’t unhappy about being on the airplane, but he’s just a very loud, squirmy little guy. You really don’t want to sit anywhere near us. I was totally wiped after a very long day, and after walking home from Stiners house, I unpacked my dop kit in the dark, and proceeded to brush my teeth with Cortizone 10. After 15 seconds of brushing, I knew something was terribly wrong. I rinsed several times with Listerine, and water, and attempted to erradiacte the horrible taste in my mouth with toothpaste. I then asked the internet how bad this was, and could not find anything useful, so I broke my poison control hotline cherry. Fortunately, they didn’t make me feel any more of a dumb ass then I already felt. They said they get this call all the time, and that I did the right thing with the rinsing, and I’d be fine. So, hopefully, if anyone else in the world googles “brush teeth cortizone”, they’ll end up here. You’re welcome.
  • Every baby has a least one thing that really challenges their parents. I’ve only now recognized that Jasper’s insanely high activeness and strength is what I’m really struggling with. Stiners and I are not strong, nor super long on endurance. Jasper’s continues to get more active and stronger every day, while I feel like I’m heading in the other direction. It’s already a challenge to keep up with him, and its about to get a lot harder since he’s now mobile.
  • Its important to aim J-Ball’s mighty man tool downwards after putting a diaper on. Otherwise, it’s wet onsies all around. So we have converstaions like this:
    “Penis down?”
    “Penis down.”
  • Jiboo’s godparents came out for a short visit. It was crazy fun, with the emphasis on crazy.
  • For Stiner’s birthday, I decided to throw her a “surprise” birthday in Newton. So I came over on her birthday with a Cabot’s birthday cake in hand, and told her we were having a party. The doorbell rang like 3 minutes later, and the party began. This way she didn’t have to do any mental or physical prep, but didn’t have the actual “SURPRISE” moment, which I believe would have introduced severe trust issues in our relationship. ‘Twas a good party.
  • During late pregnancy, I thought it would be nice if I could fast forward to having a six month old. In my mind, it would be better to have a baby that was somewhat interactive, and less of a very needy lump of goo. Now in retrospect, these past six months have been some of the richest of my life. So if I had a time machine, I would go back like 5 years and buy lots of google stock.
  • To celebrate the 6 month of Japser’s life outside the womb, I will introduce a radical new concept in Jasper voyeurism: video.  Here’s a glimpse at early drunk style crawling: