Wednesday, April 07, 2010


Paige hates to clean up.

Last night, I tried to make her pick up all of the markers and paper that she'd left all over the kitchen table so we could eat dinner. I told her that if she didn't, she'd have to go into time out. Not only did she refuse, but she ran off to her bedroom. A few seconds later, she returned with yet another marker and piece of paper and started drawing.

"Paige, I told you it's time to clean up!" I said, as I grabbed the marker out of her hand.

"But, da-add. I was drawing a circle with an X on it that says 'No time out!'"

You can't blame her for trying.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Like Looking in a Mirror

Thanks to an old VHS tape at my mom's house, Paige is now enamored with the Fisher Price Little People. (I couldn't find any clips of the show in English, but here it is, dubbed in Italian. I'm bummed. It still has the lame opening song, but not the super creepy, Aaron Neville version.)

It's not surprising that Paige's favorite character is Maggie, the girl with the curly hair. (Especially since she looks like a miniature version of the five-year-old Traci.) Every time Maggie comes on the screen Paige says, "There's Maggie. She looks a bit like me. She's got currrrrly hair."

She's said this so many times that I barely even notice it anymore. But it did throw me off when she told me who I look like.

"I think you look a bit like Michael."

Michael? Really? Huh.


Tuesday, February 09, 2010

7th Inning Stretch

This weekend, our family room turned into a baseball diamond (in addition to a mess). Paige found the baseball bat that I bought her last summer and decided it was time to play. After about 5,000 pitches, she was getting pretty good at hitting it--or rather, I was getting really good at throwing the ball the directly at the bat. Not surprisingly, she exclaimed with delight, "I'm really good at baseball!"

"You sure are," I responded.

"Do you know what's my favorite sport?"




Friday, January 15, 2010

Paige's Video Pics

Here are some of Paige's recent YouTube favs:

The Raveonettes - Last Dance

Weezer - If You're Wondering

Yo Gabba Gabba - Party in My Tummy

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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

You can tell Paige has boy cousins...

"Dad, Great Grandma gave me a treat!"

"What was it?"

"A light saber."

That seemed like a strange present for an 85 year old lady to give a little girl. Then I saw the candy on the counter.

"Do you mean a lifesaver?"

"Yeah, a light saber."


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Daddy-Daughter Rock 'n Roll

Best. Musical. Experience. Ever.

To get a little natural reverb on the vocals, I moved my recording stuff into our bathroom for an afternoon. I'd been in there about two seconds before my curious little fans were knocking on the door to see what I was up to.

I could see that Paige was very concerned. She doesn't like things to be out of place and she's currently not a fan of microphones. She immediately said, "No, dad. That's very much too loud."

I explained that it would actually be really quiet, because we'd just hear the microphone through the headphones. Slowly, she eased back into the room and eventually she put on her pair of headphones. She watched as I started recording some vocals.

I could see in the mirror that she was starting to bop her head along to the beat. Next thing I knew, she was singing along (making up her own words and melody). When I played back the recording, I noticed a little angelic voice singing backup. I couldn't have been more pleased. I'll guess she'll be getting publishing rights now.

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Friday, October 30, 2009

Who Wore it Better?

Today it was Curtis's turn to wear Paige's old monkey costume. Who looked better? You make the call.

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Paige's Rock 'n Roll Heart

Lately Paige has been noticing her heartbeat, or heartbeep, as she calls it. Yesterday, after running around the living room she said, "Dad, listen to my heartbeep!"

I went over to her and put my ear up to her chest. "Wow, that's loud. It sounds like a kick drum!"

"No, dad. It's not a kick drum. It's a guitar."

Paige. My own little Joan Jett.


Friday, October 23, 2009

Sleepy Kids

Random thoughts from the New York trip.

It was tough four us to leave the kids for four days, but it was party time for them--two days at each grandma's. But I do believe that it threw their internal clocks off a bit.

On Sunday evening, Traci called her mom to check up on everyone. It was around 6 o'clock, Utah time. Traci's mom said, "Does Paige ever take naps in the afternoon?"

"Not really."

"Oh, well she just fell asleep on the kitchen table while we were eating dinner. Do you think she's down for the night?"

"Uh, no."


Curtis was also a bit worn out. The day after we got back, Traci sent me this picture. In the middle of playing, he just ran out of juice.

Having fun all the time is a lot of work.

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Welcome to Public School

On just her second day of preschool at our neighborhood elementary school, Paige came home with a flyer that said "Lice has been identified in our classroom." Sweet.

So far no creepy crawlers in Paige's hair. Say a li'l prayer for us.

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Monday, September 14, 2009

Fall Showers

Today is a rainy day September day in Salt Lake City. But before fall, it was summer, and before that it was spring. I just found this self-portrait of 3/4ths of the fam from May, back when we were gearing up for all the excitement the sunny days would bring...

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Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Competitve World of Pre-K Athletics

Paige and McKenzie listening intently to the half-time speech.

Paige had her first soccer game this morning. I don't think it was that big of deal for her, but for Traci and I, it was yet another anxiety-ridden momentous occasion.

For all of her incessant chatter around our house, Paige is incredibly shy around others. Luckily, she has really taken to the idea of "teacher" lately, which has made for good experiences in both preschool and primary. But she is still really timid around other kids. So something like soccer can go either way--a ton of fun for or an endless amount of tears. And that means a lot of stress for mom and dad.

Fortunately, I was able to get most of the worries out of my system on Wednesday when I took her to her first practice. To my delight, we got to the field and she ran right over to her team. She started stretching out with the others (that's the sign of a great coach, he has a bunch of 3-year-olds stretching out before practice) and didn't even look back at me.

She did really well through much of practice, save the few times where she and her buddy Mackenzie had to stop and throw grass or hold hands and skip. So I was expecting her to be a regular Christian Ronaldo at the game today.

Um, not so much. She seemed to be having fun, but every time the ball (or the swarm of kids around the ball) came her way, she headed the other direction. She was, however, very happy when her team scored a goal and just as happy when the other team scored.

Paige on a breakaway? No, she's running away from the other kids.

Her favorite parts of the game were when she got to sub out because she got to come sit next to me and pet the coach's wife's dog.

The coach is really good to include all of the kids and gave Paige a chance to kick off after a goal. She walked up the ball in super-slow motion, tapped it about one inch and then ran away.

But she had a great time, which is all that matters. (She wasn't nearly as good as the girl on the other team who was about a foot taller than everyone else and kept scoring all the goals. Clearly a ringer.)

Curtis trying to sneak onto the team.

Curtis loved it as well. When he wasn't running out on the field, he was stealing the corner-kick cones and using them as bullhorns.

Yay, sports.

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Saturday, August 08, 2009

Moon Phases

This is now the fourth year of St. George trips for Paige. It's been her best yet. She can't get enough of the pool, and when she's not in the water, she's planted firmly in front of the DVD player. What could be better?

Curtis, however, is in the I-want-to-touch-and-then-destroy-everything-in-my-path phase and is driving us a bit crazy. We got to hang out a 1 a.m., 6 a.m. and then 6:30 a.m. this morning. He liked our time together much more than I did.

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Sunday, August 02, 2009

Sweet Dreams

We survived our first overnight trip to Grandpa's ranch since the advent of Curtis. We generally just make a day trip out of it, as to avoid all the extra packing and worry that comes with sleeping in a foreign locale. But we figured it was time to give it a go.

Paige had a great time looking at the stars and running around with glow sticks and her cousins. So hooray for nighttime.

The kids slept fine, which was a blessing. Traci and I, not so much, thanks to Curtis's incessant rustling in his Pack 'n Play. I knew sleep was entirely out of the question at about 4 a.m., when I could hear a rodent scratching at the baseboards beneath my bed. Knowing that I'm an open-mouth sleeper, the visions of a mouse crawling into my mouth repelled all visions of sleep.

Fortunately, come sunrise, my mouth was still mouse-free. Phew.

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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Why Do We Pay for Pre-School?

Paper pirate hats, obviously.

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

New World View

A few of Paige's truths were shaken during our weekend trip to the ranch.

1. To protect his sensitive paws from the rough terrain, Jenny's dog was wearing "doggy shoes." Paige's response: Dogs don't wear shoes!!!

2. A sheep herder was driving his fourwheeler around with his sheep dog standing on the back rack. Again Paige exclaimed: Dogs don't ride motorcycles!!!

3. She also learned that while keyboards are generally awesome, it's not cool when your little brother smacks you in the eye with one. In my mind I heard her say: Keyboards don't double as attack weapons!!!

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Saturday, June 13, 2009

Summer School

Prayers are answered. Paige loves preschool. (It's tough to say how much of that can be attributed to the chance to wear her Dora backpack.)


Product of Her Parents

It's my fault that Paige walks around singing "Around the world, around the wor-uld, around the world, around the..."

I'm guessing Traci is the reason Paige rides her trike down the street, and--before she turns back around--pulls her books out of the little basket on the handlebars and reads for a while.


Friday, June 12, 2009

No More Gwen Stefani

I'm now in the business of making mixtapes for Paige. One of them features an edited version of "Hollaback Girl." I've noticed Paige was getting better and repeating lyrics when I heard her singing "The shhh is bananas, B-A-N-A-N-A-S." No more "Hollaback" for three-year-olds.

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Day Two

Today is the real test. Any kid can survive her first day of preschool. But will she go back for a second? We'll find out shortly...


Tuesday, June 09, 2009


Paige completed day one! Right now she's at Arctic Circle celebrating the big accomplishment. After she gets done climbing up and down the french fry-encrusted playground I expect to hear a first-hand report.


This Kid

Is going to her first day of preschool this morning. Please cross your fingers that it goes well.

(Picture courtesy of Tim's fancy new camera)

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Sunday, May 10, 2009

(Potty) Train Wreck

I was reading a mommy blog the other day and the mommy author made reference to potty training being "not that big of deal." She then said that she thinks a lot of moms make a big deal out of a lot of stuff that isn't really that big of deal. Well, this mommy (or dad, whatevs.) has something to say about that!

Paige has been "potty trained" (those are sarcasm quotes) for months now. Yet nearly ever trip to the old water closet is a gigantic task. It has not been easy. Though it has certainly had some comical moment, overall, it is an incredibly frustrating endeavor.

Funny: Paige screams from the bathroom at the top of the stairs, "Mom, I did the poops! It looks like the letter C. No, it looks like a U."

Challenging: Paige, Curtis, Spencer at the Taylorsville library. Paige decides she needs to go RIGHT NOW. We hustle to the men's bathroom which contains two urinals and a stall. The stall is filled with a man, lots of grunting, an unimaginable smell, and no sign of ending soon. Spencer, seeing no other option, holds Paige over the urinal and hopes for the best.

Infuriating: Tonight Paige is tired and filled with rage. I try to get her to go the bathroom before she goes to bed, which she does. However, she refuses to put the toilet paper in the toilet after she is done. When I finally do so for her, she gets upset and grabs it back out of the toilet. Arrghhh!

Endearing: A few weeks back. I ask her if she can "do it by herself." No, she wants me to help her. Fine. What I didn't expect was her scooting over on the seat and saying, "Come on, dad."

What a lovable little monster. I will die a premature death.


Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Third Day

I would have to guess that Jesus is pretty happy that his resurrection day is celebrated, in part, by dressing your kids up in new church clothes and taking pictures in the front yard.

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Monday, April 06, 2009

The Stuff That Makes a Father Proud

The last few days, Paige has been banging away at her little acoustic guitar. It all started when she was watching an episode of the Doodlebops called "The Mystery Riff." When she saw Busdriver Bob play that solo, she turned to me and said, very seriously, "Dad, where's my guitar?"

Since then she's been smacking the strings as hard as she can and singing little songs about stuff she's been doing or things she's been looking at. "We' Grandma Sutherlanddddd's" or "There's the the bought me." 

While that's certainly endearing enough, what really gets me is that before she starts any song she says, in pure punk rock fashion, "1, 2, 1-2-3-4." I love it.


Monday, March 30, 2009

Words of Wisdom

As far as dads go, I'm you know, alright. I'd say I spend a lot of time with my kids, but there are certain times or routines that I don't experience every day. I was in charge of getting Paige in the tub yesterday. That's where I learned that there are several things that Traci must tell her repeatedly.
Admidst her tub playing, I noticed some suspicious bubbles and Paige's huge grin. I looked at her and before I could even say anything she rehearsed the following:

We never, never, never do poops in the tub.
Only poops in the potty.
No poops in the tub.

Great advice.

I also learned the Traci's rules for Paige's tumbling class:
We always stay by my teacher.
We never, never, never, run away.
We never steal the ball.

Yeah, Paige is that kid in tumbling class that gets up and runs around while the class is supposed to be sitting and listening. She's also the one who, while doing the little running games, stops and looks at the wall and says to the teacher, "W-A-R-R-I-O-R. What's that spell?" She's probably more mathlete than athlete. She gets that from her mom. I'm a regular Tiger Woods.


Sunday, March 15, 2009

So Brave

Life has been pretty busy lately. I've been doing a ton of freelance work, which is a good thing, but after writing at work and then writing at home, Manifesto-ing has taken a backseat. This isn't much of a big deal, other than I regret not writing down some of the funny things our kids have been doing lately.

Overnight, Paige has gone from being our cute little monster to a cute little "big girl." I blame it on the new year. After 19 months of her absolutely hating nursery, we suddenly found ourselves walking her to primary--our little girl, now a Sunbeam.

I haven't made too big a deal out of baby landmarks. It's great when they start crawling, it's awesome when they walk and talk. I've never thought of these as things to feel sad about it or to mourn the "growing up" of it all. But taking my little girl to nursery, that was a tough one.

We were extremely nervous, especially given Paige's stranger shyness and hatred of all things church. Surprisingly, she went in without incident. Phew.

Picking her up, however, was not so easy. Our big girl seemed very little when we saw her again, her eyes swollen and red from two straight hours of crying. My first thought was, 'That's it, we're homeschooling her. We can't send her away.'

But things have gotten better. Through bribery, trickery, and the fact that she really likes singing time, our the little big girl has now become a primary champion. Though she cries and tells us she doesn't want to go every week, once she gets there she has a good time. And then, for the duration of sacrament meeting--and several hours thereafter--she says, "I was so brrrave (nicely rolling the "r") at Primary today!"

But last Sunday was the payoff. News to us, it was one of those days where the Primary kids go up and sing a song during sacrament meeting. "Oh, Paige, go up there," Traci said, both of momentarily forgetting she was one of those kids. Up she went.

Because she's just miniature, they put her right in front, with her chin resting on the front railing of the stage. Of course, she didn't sing any of the words, she just stood there, grinning from ear to ear. And of course, there we were, waving like idiots from the back row. So very proud.

When she came back, we told her she was brave. And then she told us.

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Tuesday, March 03, 2009

I Remember When I Was a Kid...

I've already complained about my mom not letting me go to my first concert until I was 14. (It ended up being Nine Inch Nails of all things. Great parenting, mom.) Now that I'm running the show, sooner or later I'll have decide when I'll allow my kids to do that stuff.

Paige's second favorite band The Ting Tings is coming to town in a few weeks. Should I let her go? She's only three--but she's a pretty mature three. Since Traci won't go with me, I think it only makes sense to take the toddler who knows all the words to "Shut Up and Let Me Go."

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Monday, February 09, 2009

The Minature Manipulator

The other night, Traci's mom invited Paige over to make Valentine's cookies. Around dinner time, Paige asked Grandma where Grandpa was. She told her he was just down the hall in his office.

Paige asked again. "Where's Grandpa?" and then added a subtle subquestion, "Buying me nuggets and fries?"

Grandpa went and got Paige some nuggets and fries. Grandparents are pushovers.


Thursday, January 22, 2009

This...Does...Not...Compute (In a Robot Voice)

Maybe Paige and I have been listening to too much electronic music lately. Yesterday Traci put clips in Paige's hair and said, "Paige, you look so cute. Just like Snow Princess Dora." Paige replied, "Not like a princess, like a 'puter." Meaning a computer. My daughter thinks she looks like a computer.

The computer is all she thinks about these days, thanks to her introduction to the games on the Playhouse Disney site. She says "I wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, wanna, play gamesssssss!" about 100 times a day. I'm getting really good at Ooh & Ahh's Coco Nutty Bowling.

I feel fine about Paige being a computer. It's handy, I guess. Paige established long ago that Curtis, however, is not a computer. She's decided he's a potato.

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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pet Sounds

For some reason, it made me sad to see that after my last post about potty training Paige, the auto-generated ads on my site were for "housebreaking your pet in a week." That said, the, er, housebreaking has been improving.


Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Yet Another Thing They Don't Tell You About Parenthood

I never realized how hard potty training a kid would be. Not to go into too many details, but I've sure spent a lot time hanging out in the bathroom waiting for "it" to happen.

After all sorts of attempts and approaches, we finally pulled out the little DVD player and let Paige sit on the toilet with the thing on her lap. Incredibly sanitary, I know. So she spent an hour an a half watching a movie, and I sat on the tub with the computer on my lap. What a way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Slowly, we're making progress. Fortunately, we've ditched the DVD player for books. However, she loves to read her Dora's Halloween book, which, even when she's not reading it, causes her to lose concentration on the task at hand and stand up and shout "Happy Halloween!" Arrgh.


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Paigey's Top Vids of '08 (part II)

I Are Cute Kitten - Sure, kittens are cute. But do we have to pretend that if they were to speak in English, they'd use bad grammar?

The Ting Tings - Shut Up and Let Me Go - Sooner or later, Paige is going to learn to use the phrase "shut up." Traci and I are both wondering how we are going to teach her not to say it, when this is one of her favorite songs and she shouts lyrics at the top of her lungs.

Baby Laughing
- This is a newcomer to Paige's list of favs. There's not a lot going on here that isn't explained in the title.

Hot Chip - One Pure Thought - Thank you, Hot Chip, for teaching my daughter to use her leg as a guitar. The chubby band member has also taught Paige some sweet dance moves.

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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Paigey's Top Vids of '08 (part I)

Because I'm a good parent, Paige and I spend a lot of time watching YouTube together. Here's some of her favs. 

1. Matt & Kim - Yea Yeah This video's great if you like identifying food items. PAIGE: Oh, there's a banana! Oh, there's a pizza! CRASH!!! Now they're cleaning up! Matt and Kim are great role models, teaching kids you always clean up after having a food fight with friends in food costumes.

2. Matt & Kim - Lightspeed Paige calls this "Clap Clap," for obvious reasons. This is my favorite Matt & Kim song, and somehow after watching the video 18 million times (literally) I still like it. Paige sings along with every word. 

3. Nathaniel Rave Take the dancing kid from Yo Gabba Gabba (via The Soup), mix it with a cat head and BLAMO!!! YouTube gold! 

4. Patches the Horse If there's one thing I know, it's that a talking horse really appeals to a three-year-old. A horse that can fetch a beer from the fridge really appeals to its redneck owners. 

5. Dancing with Little Einsteins Paige doesn't like watching videos of the actual Little Einsteins show. She only wants to watch this crappy home video of a restaurant appearance by the mascot version of the characters. She affectionately refers to them as "The 'Steins." 

More to come...

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Friday, December 05, 2008

Celebrity Sighting: The Jonas Brothers' Hair

Outside of the Winnie the Pooh ride

Disneyland must have been a success because about every other day Paige will say, "Was that fun to go to Disneyland?" (She only speaks in question form.) Then she'll rattle off every ride that we went on and every Disney character we met.

These reminders made me realize that I neglected to write about the most exciting part of our trip--seeing the Jonas Brothers' hair. Yep, those big-haired, teen faux rockers were recording their Disney Christmas special while we were there. The crowd of 12-year-old girls was so big and shriek-y that I could only get close enough to see her hair. But that's all I needed.

It looked a bit like this:

And, as an added bonus, we later got trapped in a foot-traffic jam thanks to a Corbin Bleu performance. I saw his hair as well.

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

The Happiest Place on Earth Sure Made Me Tired

Minnie is so photogenic. Paige is pretty cute, too. Surprisingly, I don't have too much to say about our Disneyland adventure. It was a 50/50 tossup of whether it would be the best trip ever or the worst four days of my life.

Luckily, it skewed much more toward the former. It took Paige a little bit to get used to the idea of going on rides but once she caught on, she couldn't have been happier. Meeting Minnie was a definite highlight for her.

When we got ready to leave for the airport I said, "Come on, Paige, let's go get on the airplane."

"No, how 'bout go to Disneyland?"

"No, we need to go home and see Curtis."

"How 'bout see Mickey?"


"How 'bout yes?"

So I guess she had a good time.

By the time we made it to the airport, her fun meter had run out. Trying to persuade her to keep walking to the security check, I said, "Come on, Paige, we need to go to the line?"

"See a lion? Okay."

"No. We need to go to that liiine."

"Where's the lion?"


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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Toilet Troubles

Potty training is not going well at all. But it's not without it's humor. We bought a Dora the Explorer seat that fits over the regular toilet seat, hoping it would help the process. It didn't, despite the fact that Paige loves it. The other day she picked up the Dora seat, put her face in the hole, looked at me and said, smiling, "I seeee you."

On a similar note, when Paige was in the tub today she discovered that there's a very funny way to make bubbles in the water.


Sunday, November 09, 2008

To Disneyland and Beyond!

I would say that this sums up the vast majority of Paige's inaugural visit to Disneyland--only being able to see one inch over the side of the car. But that's what you get when you're only 30 inches tall. (Notice my sweet my sweet high score. 26,700! Paige's meager 3,300 was still better than Traci.)

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Friday, October 31, 2008

Our Little Sandwi(t)ch

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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Better with Faces

Paige is not always awesome with names. She just barely stopped calling my friend Bert's daughter McKenzie (Kenzie) "Candies." She calls her cousin, Nathan Vogelsberg, Nathan Cheeseburgers. And she thinks my mom's remodeling guy's name is Christmas. Uh, it's Chris. Is there a pattern--candy, cheeseburgers, Christmas? Favorite things, perhaps?


In the Daylight Everywhere Feels Like Home

Luckily Paige and I have the same taste in music. We were both very excited when the new Matt & Kim video debuted. However, she is very concerned about some of the unsanitary situations in the video.

"Oh, no! They're in the garbage can! Oh, no! They're in the fridge! "

We love it.

Matt & Kim - Daylight

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Brought To You By...

During sacrament meeting on Sunday, Paige was lying under the pews saying something over and over. I didn't mind. It was the quietest she had been all day and she wasn't shouting"A-MEN!" or declaring, "That's yummy bread!" But after I heard repeat the same phrase for the tenth time, I leaned down to get a closer listen.

"Sesame Street is brought to you by the letter E and the number 6. Sesame Street is brought to you by the letter E and the number 6. Sesame Street is brought to you..."

She doesn't even watch Sesame Street regularly. What a weirdo.

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Monday, October 20, 2008

Sunday Best

Whose kids are these, anyway?

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Sunday, October 05, 2008

The Streets are Not Safe

Paige and her cousin Ryan were a scary sight, driving around at grandpa's ranch in the Gravedigger.

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The Evil Hairdresser

Curtis got a real haircut from Grandma Martha today. Fortunately, Paige had prepped him for it.

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Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Who's the Boss?

A few months ago, I was being proactive and I taught Paige the following:

Me: Paige, who's the boss? Daddy's the boss.
Me: Who's the boss?
Paige: Dad's the boss.

She quickly unlearned this truth. On Sunday I said, "Paige, let's watch football."

"After Dora." (Dora the Explorer is her new favorite thing, leaving the Wiggles and the Doodlebops in the dust."

"No, now."

"No. After Dora."

And that was that. We watched Dora.


Thursday, September 11, 2008

So Fresh and So Clean

Traci and Curtis are at the doctor for his four month checkup and Paige and I are hanging out at home. I've enjoyed watching her do her morning routine. She just walked over to our dresser, grabbed Traci's deodorant, pulled up her shirt and rubbed it on her stomach. She then exclaimed, "That's so pretty!"

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Sunday, August 24, 2008

All The Things Curtis is Not

Curtis shows the happiness that comes from Grandma giving you 'business hair'

Paige spends every waking moment talking. She comfortably executes both sides of the conversation, but still has to be acknowledged in everything she says.


PAIGE: Where's Danny? (the drummer in my band)
ME: [I am forced to repeat this question in order for her to answer. If I don't she just keeps asking, FOREVER.] Where's Danny?
PAIGE: He's at playing the drums.

We have this same conversation about airplanes, helicopters, grandma, kids in her nursery class, and the moon...every day.

The other night, Traci was at work and I was hanging out with both of the kids. Paige and I had to have the following conversation:

PAIGE: Is Curtis a refrigerator?
ME: Is Curtis a refrigeratior?
PAIGE: No!!!
PAIGE: Is Curtis a window?
ME: Is Curtis a window?
PAIGE: Nooooo!!!

This went on for about half an hour. We were able to determine that Curtis was not in fact a kitchen, a ball, a dog, or a computer (thank goodness!); nor was he in the swing, in the tub, or outside. Fortunately, we did get to the bottom of the mystery. Paige was able to verify that he was "a cute little guy," "a little brother," and "on the floor." Phew. I had really been worried that Curtis was either a lamp, a couch, or a tuba.

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Friday, August 15, 2008

Second Kid Blues

Curtis is right to be frightened of his scary big sister

I can already tell that Curtis is getting different treatment than Paige did. Case in point, we made Paige wait until the mature age of two years old before going to her first concert. Curtis got to see Nada Surf at just three months. Lucky dude.

The show was at the Gallivan Center and I thought we'd be able to find a place where we could sit down and see the band. No. Having to settle for one or the other, we chose sitting down. Traci and Curtis spent the evening on the grass. Paige and I alternated between sitting with them and watching the show. I gauged her enjoyment level by the intensity with which she pounded my head while she sat on my shoulders.

I was very happy to get to see the band and the rest of the family seemed to have a good time as well. The last song, however, reminded me that I might want to keep the kids home for a few more years. Singer Matthew Caws encouraged the crowd to join in the refrain of "The Blankest Year," by screaming "*&$# it! I'm gonna have a party" repeatedly. After the second or third time, I was sure that Paige would have learned a new phrase. Fortunately, she wasn't paying attention.

I know she catches on to lyrics. She has to sing and dance along every time we see the Ting Tings iPod commercial. When it hits the chorus she loves to yell "Shut up and let me go. Hey!"

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Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Do It Again!

I put Curtis in the tub for my first time the other day. I get intimidated by the fragility of newborns, so I let Traci handle tubby time. I usually wrestle with Paige instead.

But Traci was at work and I was feeling brave so I decided to give it a shot, with Paige's help of course.

Things were going well. Paige and I were both hunched over his little tub scrubbing him down when a high-arching spray shot right for us. Luckily we were both able to dodge it. I was caught off guard and thrown off of my game plan. Paige, however, was blissfully amused.

"Curtis squirt!" she squealed. "Do it again!"

I was happy, Paige was sad, when he didn't do it again.

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Our little spelling bee

Paige loves to spell. She has moved on from asking us to spell words and then just repeating. Now she has to spell them herself. She's pretty good at spelling "mom," and usually "dad." But when she tries those words back to back, sometimes she gets a bit mixed up.

Spencer: Paige, Can you spell dad?
Paige: M...
Spencer: No, it's starts with an D.
Paige: Oh, D-A-M.



Wednesday, July 09, 2008

floyd the barber

I'm now so cheap that I cut my own hair. Sometimes I use a mirror for the back, sometimes not. Last week I asked Traci if she'd start cutting it for me. She said, "I can't cut hair."

Two days later, Paige came downstairs after Traci gave her a bath. I noticed something about her hair.

"Traci, what happened to Paige's hair?"

"I cut it. What's wrong?"

"It's like three inches shorter on one side than the other."

[Traci inspects her work.] "Well, she was sitting on the floor, looking up at the TV while I cut it."

Paige won't even let us touch her hair, let alone cut it. We've had to be very sneaky when cutting it lately. Usually my mom does it while Paige is playing in her backyard. ("Hey Paige, what's that over there?" Snip, snip.) This time, Traci took the task upon herself.

Traci was able to solve the length discrepancy and Paige is now cuter than ever.

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Wednesday, July 02, 2008

A Sheep, A Goat and A Motorbicycle

Summer time means weekends at Grandpa's sheep ranch. It's crazy that it's already Paige's third season up there. She was excited to go because we promised she would see five of her favorite things - a sheep, a cow, a horse, a goat and a tractor.

Time at the ranch basically equals eating lots of food and riding around on the four wheelers. At six months she would sit on the four wheeler with me in indifference. At a year-and-a-half she was scared to death of the thing. This year she started out scared, but once she took her first ride, she never wanted to get back off.

She calls it the "motor bicycle" and throughout each ride she'd periodically say to me, "It's fun play motor bicycle." Before we'd get on she'd always make sure to put on her riding hat and glasses (which are strangely familiar to her "it's fun play swimming pool" hat and glasses).

Traci took this photo of us. Paige saw it about one minute later, while she was still in sight of the actual ATV. "Motor bicycle!" she screamed in delight, as though she had seen an old friend.

Paige inherited her father's keen sense of fashion.

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Hup Holland Hup

Since the Jazz's early departure, I've lost all interest in the NBA playoffs (I am still passively rooting for Kobe to lose). I'm now focusing all of my energy on soccer. It's Euro 2008 time and the Dutch have come out of nowhere to dominant the first round.

Dutch voetbal always brings out the nostalgia in me. It's been eight years since I walked down Dutch streets painted entirely orange in support of their team--Holland hosted the tournament in 2000. I've never experienced such sports excitement and watching the watching the games with my friends the Bloms, Butler, and Wix was one of the highlights of my mission.

It's been four years since I was sneaking out from my job at the Community College to drive to Provo to watch Euro 2004 on TV with my friend RB. That was a life-changing tournament. Not because of the soccer, but because RB decided to have a kid. (Fortunately, his wife was able to give birth without making us miss any of the games.)

RB was the first of our friends to (purposely) venture into parenthood. When we found out they were going to have a kid, it became time for us to start seriously considering the proposition.
Here we are, four years later, with two little kids. It's 4:00 a.m. and Traci is sitting next to me, giving Curtis a bottle.

Paige loves playing soccer. She dribbles the ball from one side of the backyard to the other, kicks it against the fence and yells "Goooooooooooooal!!!!" So we watch Euro 2008 together and we both cheer when Holland scores. (She just likes cheering.)

For the next round, I'll probably bust out my orange, inflatable Dutch crown, Oranje jersey and wooden shoes. RB has promised to find his Snickers Lucky Pants, the orange promotional whitey-tighteys from 2000. Hup, Holland, Hup!

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Monday, June 09, 2008

How Indigenous Alaskans Reach the Second Floor

Traci took Paige to the Southtown Mall on Friday. Paige discovered her new favorite thing.

When I walked in the door after work she shouted "Dad, go on eskimo-later!"

"You went on an escalator?" I asked.

"Eskimo-later." She found my question to be more of an offer and headed for the door.


Sunday, June 01, 2008

That Spells...

Paige loves to spell. We spend a bunch of every car ride spelling whale, and fish, and octapus, and every other animal she can think up. Traci bought Paige a personalized sippy cup and said to her, "What are those letters? P-A-I-G-E. What does that spell?" Paige looked at her and replied, "It spells juice."


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Six Weeks of Curtis

So, little Curtis has been with us for almost six weeks now. We like him pretty good and intend to keep him. (I have a friend who adopted a kid a few months ago. I was a little surprised to hear that you basically have a one year guarantee when you adopt. If it doesn't work, you can just give 'em back.)

In some ways, newborn #2 seems easier than the first one. But it's likely just a change in perspective. We had a tough go with Paige from the beginning. She had acid reflux and would cry and cry. We spent many hours bouncing her and trying to hold her just right so she'd be happy. Curtis is pretty good for the most part, though he still isn't a very good night sleeper. And he barfs a lot.

Curtis probably seems a lot easier to deal with because we are so busy trying to handle Paige. It's nice to have a kid who just lies there and never cries, "No! Bye, bye change diaper" or "Bye, bye, wear Paigey's shoes."

But adding a second kid makes everything harder. Traci and I are back in the stage where going to the grocery store, getting in the shower, or cleaning the house seems like an insurmountable task. Much planning is required for anything.

Paige is doing pretty good with Curtis, or Cur-TIS, as she calls him. She has to climb all the way over him in order to regularly "kiss his head, kiss his head." She likes to hold him. But when she's done, she just pushes him over.

Traci is getting very little sleep. But she likes the kid, too.

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Tuesday, May 20, 2008

word association

Though she never wants to listen to us, it's obvious Paige at least hears the things we say. Now when we change her diaper she immediately says, "Whoa, big poops!" regardless of the contents.

Diapers have become very intriguing to her and she's very interested in what's going on with Curtis' diaper. Yesterday I was just about done changing him when he squirted all over me. Paige watched the whole thing in quiet amazement. After I had gotten him all cleaned up and in a new diaper, Paige declared, "All gone, water poops!" Apparently, we have never taught about urine. But she knows about water and she knows about poops. Water poops. Makes sense to me.

On a linguistic note, I also like that Paige calls motorcycles "motor bicycles" and refers to her belly button as her "tummy button." I loved when I said goodbye to her this morning she replied, "Fax me."

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Curtis at Three Weeks

Curtis seems slightly less amused.

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Stuck in the Tree

Paige refuses to speak in sentences. But why would she, when she can express everything she wants/needs with two word phrases?

"Watch Bunny." (I want to watch the stupid Baby Einsteins movie for the 1,000th time.)
"Some fishycrackers." (I refuse to eat anything but cottage cheese, pizza, tamales or goldfish crackers. So give me some fishycrackers.)
"Bubbye church." (I've had enough religion for the day.)

Tonight we were playing with her ball in the backyard. She's getting to be quite the little soccer player and we spent a long time dribbling the ball from one side of the yard to the other before kicking it into the fence and yelling, "Gooooooooooooooooooooalllll!"

After she tired of that, she wanted me to throw the ball into the tree so it would get stuck. She would then yell excitedly, "Stuck in tree!" After I'd get it out, she would immediately yell for me to do it again, "You stuck in tree!" Which was then shortened to "You stuck! You stuck!" When she got really excited, the pronunciation lagged and it sounded like she was yelling repeatedly, "You suck! You suck!" She's so loud that I'm sure all of my neighbors could hear her taunting her poor father. Now I'll never get any respect in this town.

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Friday, May 09, 2008

Text Me

Now when I leave for work in the morning Paige says the following to me:

"Bye Dad."
"See ya, dad."
"Doei, dad." (Dutch for see ya)
"Call us."
And now the latest addition,
"Text me."


Sunday, May 04, 2008


Two-and-a-half years into parenting and the gross stuff keeps coming. This morning I got Paige undressed and put her in the tub. I set her pajamas and wet diaper off to the side as we had tubby time.

By the time Paige is done, it is not uncommon for me to be pretty wet, what with all of toys be hurled out of the tub and all. Today I was sitting by the tub when I could feel something wet on the back of my pants. I looked down and I sitting on Paige's very full diaper. All of the contents had seeped out, through my two layers of clothes and to my skin. It's time for this kid to get potty trained.


Sunday, April 27, 2008

Paigey vs. Curtis

My week of being home/at the hospital with my family is quickly coming to a close. The hospital stay went well enough (despite the generally poor service at Intermountain Medical Center) and we were happy that it was much shorter than our first go round. When the time came to leave, though, we were just as nervous as first-time parents. We worked to get Curtis into Paige's old car seat. We had to keep tightening and tightening those straps until it was small enough to fit the little guy. When we got him in the car we both immediately had the feeling of 'what are we going to do with this kid now?'

The first big challenge was facilitating his permanent introduction to his big sister. We took Curtis over to Traci's mom's to pick up Paige. We sat Curtis' car seat down in the living room and didn't say much about it to Paige. She saw him and kind of half-acknowledged him. We were okay with that. When we put them both in the car to go back home, we took away all books/toys that could have possibly been used as a projectile weapon.

Once at home, things went okay. Paige's only real reaction came when Curtis began to cry a bit. "Waaa!" Paige exclaimed. "Paigey's sad."

"Sure you are, sweetheart."

The next morning came the real breakthrough. Paige got out of bed and headed into our room to start her morning routine of watching The Wiggles with Traci. Traci was on the bed, with Curtis lying next to her. Paige walked up to the side of the bed and happily exclaimed, "Baby Brother!" She got up on the bed and had to hug and kiss him. "Oh, it's Curtis!" She then had to hold him, which she affectionately did with her arms wrapped tightly under his chin, not unlike a sleeper hold.

Since then, she's been pretty good about having him around. She only gets upset when I'm holding him instead of playing with her. We'll see how she does tomorrow when Traci's on her own and Paige can't have someone's full attention.

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Sunday, April 20, 2008

Welcome to the Family

Just 8 1/2 short hours ago, we welcomed little Curtis into our family. He was 7 lbs, 4 oz and 19 inches long with a ton of brown hair.

At about 8:30 this morning Traci said that she didn't think we should go to church because she was having contractions; by 9:30 we had all of our stuff together. We dropped Paige off at my sisters and were on our way to the hospital. By 10:00 Traci was dilated to a 7 and by noon she was ready to start pushing. At 1:24, the little boy formerly known as Max Power made his appearance.

We are very happy that everything went so smoothly (and were incredibly surprised by how quickly) and that Traci didn't have to have another C-Section. Traci is feeling much better than she did after having Paige and Curtis is doing just fine.

This afternoon, Jenny brought Paige to meet her little brother. When she walked in the door, she saw me lift Curtis out of his crib and sit down on the chair. She immediately came over to me and said, "Put him back in the bed, put him back in the bed." It's going to be a rough transition.

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Sunday, April 06, 2008

no play for mr. gray

Spencer: What color's Mommy's hair?
Paige: It's brown.
Spencer: It's red.
Paige: It's brown.
Spencer: What color's Paigey's hair?
Paige: [looks up] It's brown.
Spencer: What color's Daddy's hair?
Paige: It's gray.

I'm going bald, but my hair's not gray.


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Atherton vs. The Flying Dutchman

I took Paige to her first concert tonight. (My parents wouldn't let me go to concerts until I was 14.) We went to Kilby Court to see my friend Brian's band Atherton play. She absolutely loved it. She sat on my shoulders the whole show, just bobbing up and down and tapping the rhythm on my head.

When we got back in the car she immediately said, "Andre?" Though Paige likes the rock and roll, her heart really belongs to Andre Rieu.

Paige can't not dance to this song. Last night she was dancing to it and ran right into the wall.

Atherton at the City Weekly Slammy's

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Sunday, March 02, 2008

Weekend of Mini Me's

I don't spend a whole lot of time blogging about my tender little feelings. However, over the weekend I did wax emotional a bit.

Traci and I spent Friday and Saturday with our friends Bert and Karin and their two daughters at Bert's family cabin. Bert has been my friend since we were two years old, thus occupying the role of my oldest still-friend by about 15 years.

Every six months or so my mom makes a random comment like "Do you and Bert feel old enough to be having kids?" Or "Now, when you were 10 did you picture this would be how you and Bert's life would be?" I think that's just her way of dealing with the idea that her baby is old enough to have his own baby.

But as I was outside playing with Bert and our two, two-year-old girls I thought about how this was the same age when Bert and I would have first started playing together. It was also interesting to look at our little girls, both of whom look just like us.

Bert's Mini Me, Mackenzie

I tried to get a picture of the two of them together but Paige, who was being a little monster all weekend long kept crying and saying "See ya later, picture" (translation: no pictures). They did manage to have some fun together, though. They both loved getting licked by Bert's new dog and getting pulled around in the sleds.

Paige and Izzy

Paige couldn't quite pronounce Mackenzie, or even Kenzie, so she called her "Candies." I thought that was quite a compliment, as "candy" is by far Paige's favorite thing in the world.

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