08 October 2012

Who Is Dumb Enough to Go Camping With Babies? Us.

What's that Gammies? You are bored of just sitting around the house watching Max play with toys? You want to get your gigantic cheeks out into nature? Caitlin had this idea that we, along with three other couples with kids age 3 or less, should go camping for two days in Lake Geneva. When she said that, my response was "that is basically the worst idea you have ever had. I can't imagine something I'd rather do less than what you just described."

But, because I am a loving supportive husband, I manned up and decided to give it a shot.

Max enjoyed the ride up, mostly because we stopped at Culvers and he got to have chocolate ice cream. Most of it on him, but some got in there. Seriously, is there a happier kid out there?

And we basically jumped right into the camping mindset. Sammy got all dressed up in his warm gear and kicked it under the open skies in a pack and play on and off throughout the day.

Max got busy playin with his homies and his homies' toys. We went up with Jon and Jess and their two kids Emmy and Jackson, with Dave and Ashley and their boys Eddy and George, and Lindy and Trevor with Jane and Kate. George was the oldest kid at age 3. Yeah, sounds insane, right? Well, it turned out to be awesome. We had a great time with our friends and their kids, Max got to have some great new experiences with tents, fires, and nature, and we got to be out camping...which is great.

We didn't completely rough it...we did bring Diet Coke.

My little camping dudes...love them to death.

Emmy having some fun, mostly flirting with Max.

Jon and Jess and crew, just some new friends we be making...no big deal.

Here is what Gammy looked like around 7am. This kid did amazing camping. Only woke up once or twice just to eat...totally amazing.

Here is the kid I was most worried about...Max. But he loved it in the tent and his own bag. This was the moment we decided to move him into his own big boy bed, which I think has gone great. I could never have predicted having such a great two nights with these kids. Maybe Caitlin isn't as crazy as she sounds.

And the greatest picture ever. Max getting some lovin with treats in hand. Kid is a chick magnet...this happened without us instigating it.

Thanks Caitlin for making me not be a weenie and providing an awesome adventure yet again!!!

28 September 2012

I Want Brains...In My Mouf

Dudes trips. It has certainly been a while since I took a good old fashion dudes trip somewhere. So when my friend Geoff asked if I wanted to go with him to Toronto to run in a Zombie Apocalypse 5K, I immediately said "let me ask Caitlin.". Listen, u gots to get the okay from the woman. That is just a fact of life. But she said YES! Love that woman.

The day finally came. I was amazed that we were able to round up 6 dudes to drive 9 hours to Toronto as part of a 36 hour trip to run a crazy whack 5K. But these aren't your typical dudes either...homies: Matt, Geoff, Jake, Brayden and Jason all packed into Matt's Suburban and we began our ascent into hell (interpret as zombie apocalypse or Canada, however you deem appropriate).

Matt and Jake commanded the rear for the first leg. We all drove and we all took turns in the caboose. It's how gentlemen behave, really.

You know how dudes trips go. It just takes a little time to break the ice, stop concerning ourselves with being responsible dads/husbands and to start getting crazy. Geoff planned a masterful schedule that included insane food to get the ball rolling. We pulled into Grand Rapids, MI around 11:30. This is our master planner Geoff and the man responsible for this trip.

Our stop was Yesterdog...a celebrated hot dog joint of the Midwest. No Chicago dogs here, they made that clear very quickly when they realized we were from the other side of the pond. We didn't care...we wanted to take in the culture of GR, MI...which apparently is juicy, slimy, fatty and delicious.

See what I mean. A slab of dogs, one of two huge slabs that would soon be in our belly.

Lunch. This is where stuff really started kickin off nicely. Not only were we fat and happy, but we started to let the controversial and semi inappropriate conversation flow. No offense was taken on this trip...but we certainly danced on the lines of offense. It's crucial on a dudes trip.

My second dog, half consumed.

The other half, about to meet its maker! Go to your home weenie! My belly!

Several hours and Night of the Living Dead later, we ended up in Canada. Toronto was a pretty dope looking city in general. Very new, very glassy. We pulled up right around sunset, so the view was postcard money.

The second we got out of the car, Jake did what any reasonable God-fearing American would do...he urinated all over Canada's face. Jake lost some his morals on the drive when we forced him to watch the Human Centipede trailer. I believe in that moment his faith in the goodness of humanity had a heart attack.

Our dinner stop was this - The Burger Priest. Geoff had done his research and we were all pretty amped to get some of this in our mouf.

While there was nowhere to sit inside, we didn't care. Word on the street was that the meat was fresh daily and had been connected to a cow that morning. Wow. I needed it now. We ordered The Priest and fries without hesitation (well, first we had to dig up enough cash, which we barely had).

Cuteness. They had pictures of "Saints" on the walls, which were just other amazing burger places in the US. I had been to all but one.

Much anticipation. I referred to the moment as belly immersion.

The crew, getting their burger on.

Here is The Priest. It made The Burger Joint, Shake Shack and In and Out feel like they were made from fecal matter when compared to the meet in this burger. I am not joking. I give this meet the highest endorsement I can possibly give.

Geoffs tongue was moving faster then his brain could get his mouth to the burger, that's how good it was.

After that we hadn't had enough food, so we went to The Pie Shack in the Beaches neighborhood of Toronto.

Each piece was 1/4th a pie. Awesome.

We tried to reenact The Human Centipede for Jake, just to reinforce his disgust.

The pie was great, the ambience cosy, and the Congo didn't die for a minute.

A quick picture of me to prove I was still on this trip. I had trip hair, obviously. It was at this time that we googled our hotel and realized we had an hour or more to drive, so we picked up our gigantic middles and waddled over to the car.

Not without leaving our mark...Beaches, we claim you as ours!

More territory marking. We got to our hotel and slept well, despite nervous anticipation of the race looming. We got up early, breakfasted, and then headed over. Now I don't have a lot of photos of the event as not to destroy my camera, but let me say the race was epic and hard. It consisted of you running with three flags attached to your waist. As you run, hundreds of zombies try to get your flags. So basically, you end up running 3 miles like this:

This is Jake juking a zombie who is after his flag. Many zombies would chase you full speed for a hundred yards while you simultaneously avoid other zombies. The key was to stay in groups to confuse and draw the zombies to the side to create pockets of space to sprint full speed.

There were also obstacles, including a gigantic slide into blood died freezing water. This is Jason, Matt, and randomly a girl named Cheyenne. Just like in zombie movies, we all made random friends along the way to help get through the race alive. Cheyenne apparently sacrificed her lives for these men. Amazing the bonds you create when facing death.

Out team (Zombie Bait) and three zombies. In this take only 21% of people survived and of that 21% we were in the top 10% for speed. Not an easy race - physically but also mentally.

I got chased full on by a zombie for 50 yards, only to eat it hard in some mud as I struggled to fly around a corner. Bloody knee, chest and arm. Fantastic. It was totally worth the drive and all the fun. After the race we headed home to back in time for Sunday.

We had to stop in Kalamazoo for some Indian food in a strip mall. It was surprisingly delicious. The perfect end to a killer weekend. We all dipped into some serious emotional immersion and came back stronger and a bit damaged. That's what dudes trips are really all about.

26 September 2012

Honestly, this blog post is a test. Do I eve know how to blog any more? What do I say? Will people even read this? All the insecurities are back and I only took a few months break.

Well, I needed that blogging break. I have been doing it for about 7 years consistently. With the birth of Sam, I just felt like there was too much to do that was more important than blogging. Additionally, i discovered Instagram and got an iPhone, and that seemed like more fun and involved instant gratification and no writing. But I am ready to give it a go again. If anything, it's a fantastic journal for the future.

Speaking of tests, Sammy tested out rice cereal the other day and even though it was made with water and tasted like stale air, he basically started swan diving his chubby little face into it like it was his last meal. Turns out he might be an eater (unlike Max). I guess something has to sustain all that chub, right?

Alright, you can expect more posting.

Location:This is a test of the blogcast system

28 June 2012

Random Photos

Just some random pics for you before we head out on vacation in Idaho for a few weeks.

Sam. You precious boy. You get cuter and cuter every day. You are still very much a newborn...needy, cranky at times, dependent in every single way. But you are starting to show signs of growing up. You smile sometimes, sit chill interacting with a toy, etc.

You got cute big eyes, unlike your dad's slits.

Yes Sam, do you have a question? What's that? Max isn't paying attention to you? It's not nice to be a whiner Sam. Max, pay attention to your brother.

Recently our neighbor posted this beauty of a sign. This is in response to Max steeling their little lawn flag that marks a sprinkler (for a reason unknown). Max loves a good flag and loves to run and wave the flag everywhere. It's hard to stop him, particularly cause he is so cute doing it. Well, this neighbor doesn't think it's so cute. In fact, it fills her with massive anger. This sign has been up for days! Everyone who walks by just shakes their head in shame for this cranky, sad woman. It's been comical. She actually purchased a security camera and has it pointing on the flag 24 hours a day. Classic.

Anyway, just a random post.

27 June 2012

Happy Fathers Day to Me!

For Fathers Day this year, I decided to try something new. Caitlin always asks me what I want, what I want to eat, etc. I usually respond "whatever you want to get me or make me.". This year I decided to just say what I want.

So for food I told Caitlin I wanted to go to the Botanical Gardens for a picnic and to eat classy salads that have lots of mayo...like the kinds you find at Mormon parties. We dug it.

Food was awesome, but really Max couldn't wait to get into that garden.

We were able to slow him down and control him using these: twizzler cherry bites. Don't judge us.

In the gardens Max really only wanted to do one thing...which is throw rocks in the water fountain. My ideal fathers day involves me just playing with Max, so that's what we did,

Sam was a sleepy time guy.

Max and I laughed and played and did all sorts of crazy things.

What a sweet boy to his dada on his special day.

I also told Caitlin exactly what I wanted for presents...but strangely, she decided to do what I always tell her to do. She got me whatever she wanted! It was all themed on things I can do with Max. Like the kite that I already blogged about.

Water guns for the beach!

A book about Max and his dad! All things that I love and love to use with Max! After a delicious dinner of lasagna (my favorite food), I felt like I had had the best Fathers Day ever...until next year.