Lions, Tigers, and Bears!

The rain stayed away and we were able to go to the zoo! Thank goodness the weatherman is wrong 99.9% of the time!

Instead of boring you with my rambling on and on about the fun times we had, I’ll illustrate our fun time with a boat load of pictures…

Ace Riding In His Wagon On His Way Into The Columbus Zoo
Ace cruising in his wagon on the way into the Zoo.

Elephants At The Columbus Zoo
The elephants showing their best sides. 😀

Momma and Ace Riding On The Train
Momma and Ace enjoying a train ride!

A Cool Dragon Statue
Not real sure what this is, but it looked cool! 😆

Ace Giving Momma Some Lovin on the Carousel
Ace giving his Momma some lovin’

Ace Wondering Around The Playground
Ace at the playground…”What to play on next?”

Mexican Wolf at the Columbus Zoo
A Mexican Wolf

Ace Drinking His Bottle
The zoo sure does work up a big thirst!

A Crocodile at the Columbus Zoo
Crocodiles are just soooo cooool!

Dad and Ace At The Petting Zoo
Dad and Ace petting a mini goat, “Don’t pull on his ears!”

Ace With A Big Smile and a Bottle
What’s in that bottle?

Bison and some Horned Animal at the Columbus Zoo
A Bison and some kind of horned animals

Momma and Ace At The Petting Zoo
Momma chasing Ace through the petting zoo

A Bobcat Sleeping At The Columbus Zoo
This Bobcat is catching some rays.

Ace Showing Off His Tongue
That tongue again!

Flamingos at the Columbus Zoo
Pink flamingos!

Ace Posing For The Camera
Cheesin’ it up for the camera!

A Monkey at the Columbus Zoo
The zoo must not be as fun for the monkeys…

Ace Sleeping on Dad’s Shoulder
All tuckered out.. 😀

Ace Sleeping In His Wagon
The ride back to the car… Zzzzzzz

 

There will be more pictures coming soon! Sunday we are going to COSI and the camera is going to get another workout! Don’t miss it!

Do Crocodiles Actually Cry Big Crocodile Tears?

Vacation! It’s coming soon!

Do you know the last time we went on a real vacation? A real getaway? Me neither.

In a few weeks we are going to pack 900 pounds of stuff into the back of Momma’s truck, and guess what…it is all Ace’s!

Seriously, how can such a little guy require so much stuff? The list of stuff to pack is 3 or 4 pages long!

Anyways, if we manage to successfully drive the overloaded vehicle (at what point are you required to stop at the weigh stations with the semis?) halfway across the country, we are going to be in for some good fun in the sun!

So you are probably imagining a beach somewhere,  South Carolina? Florida? Nope, and nope…Iowa!  Yes, I said it…Iowa!

Seriously! We are driving to Iowa to visit some old friends, and we are staying at one of those hotels that have the indoor water park! I’m excited! (I’m really a 12 year old in a…man I hate to say it…almost 30 year old’s body)

Not only do they have an indoor water park, the hotel is located on a lake for some outdoor water fun as well!

I’m so excited!

Even though all of this puts a big smile on my face there is one thing about the trip that I’m sure will make me cry big crocodile tears…

The gas prices make me cry big crocodile tears!
I think I cried 23.743 gallons after filling up my truck. 🙁

I plan on taking a record number of pictures on our road trip, as long as I remember the camera (and we don’t have to pawn it off to pay for gas to make it all the way home) 😆 .  I should have some good shots to show all of ya’s .

Oh yeah!  If the weather cooperates, Ace will be visiting the zoo for the first time this weekend!  Please don’t rain! 🙂

This summer is going to be sooo much fun! 😀

Momma’s Going To Kill Me

So, I’m pretty sure Momma is going to kill me! Why? Because, I have a weakness for FREE stuff. Especially free stuff with wheels and an engine. 😀

In the past year I have acquired an 87 Chevy Blazer, a 77 Honda motorcycle, and 4 old push mowers that I didn’t pay a penny for. The free “junk” is piling up behind our shed at amazing rates! (If I don’t stop bringing home so called “junk”..I may just be found mangled in the “junk pile” behind our shed. 😆 )

Guess what…none of the free “junk” ran when I got them. (and most of them still don’t…but they will).

My most recent score was a 1970’s something model John Deere 56 riding lawn mower…yes…for FREE! I found it on Craigslist and was all excited! I am tired of push mowing our yard. I knew it didn’t run, but I know that almost anything can be fixed. I was really looking forward to kicking back, with no shirt, catching some rays, with a beer in one hand, and the steering wheel in the other as grass clipping flew all over the place. 😀

So I picked it up and brought it home, but guess what…not only did it not run, but it had no mowing deck. That means no blades. That means it is not mowing crap 🙁

Momma asked, “What the hell are you going to do with it if you can’t mow with it?”

Well, a few weekends ago I managed to get it started and actually move under it’s own power. Amazing huh? While most people would have taken this old worthless pile of junk to the dump for a proper burial, I found a good use.

Dad and Ace Riding On The Mower

Quit snickering at my oh so cool camo hat and good jeans!

Now I just look forward to kicking back, with no shirt, catching some rays, with Ace in one hand, and the steering wheel in the other as we zoom around the backyard dodging the land mines and annoying the neighbors with the rumble of a 6 horsepower engine running beneath our seat!

Screw mowing…let’s just ride!

By the way…I just realized that if I do things right, you can click on the picture and actually comment on the picture alone. Expect all pictures on DadThing to be like this for now on. 😀

Early Memories

We all have what I call our “early memories”. The ones from our early childhood that we will never forget.  What are some of mine?

  • Climbing a fence because a snake chased me up there.  I yelled for my Mom until she came out of the house and chopped the snake up with a shovel!  She saved my life!  She was my hero!
  • My parents owned a junk-yard when I was very little.  I remember watching my Dad working on cars all day every day.  I wanted to do my part, so I would go around to some of the cars and take off the valve stem caps (ya know the little black caps where you put air in your tires).  Then I would have to put them all back on different cars. (A 2-3 yr old’s form of customization) 😀
  • Sitting on my Dad’s lap while he operated the crane at the junk yard.  I faintly remember watching the wrecking ball come crashing down and crushing the cars.  I have always liked demolition… 😀
  • Riding in a race car.  My Dad used to build and drive race cars.  I remember riding around the track during warm up laps with his friend. (Of course he didn’t fly around the track at full speed, but to a 2 or 3 year old it was an unforgettable experience!)
  • Riding in my Dad’s “Stinky Truck”.  My Dad was a big hunter/trapper.  And along with the hunting and trapping came all sorts of stinky things.  Dead animals, blood, guts, urine, feces, and bait.  His “stinky truck”  was rank!  I will never forget the smell of that thing.
  • Seeing my brother fall into the 8 ft end of the pool underneath the solar cover.  Neither of us could swim yet, so I was scared to jump in after him.  I could just see him sitting there at the bottom of the pool not knowing what to do.  My grandma came running up and she couldn’t swim either.  We both just sat there helplessly as my brother slowly floated back to the top and my grandma could pull him out.  Luckily he was OK…just a little cold. 😀

Thinking about things like this make me wonder what Ace’s “early memories” will be?  Will having me catch him inches from the floor be one?   How about the scary car wash?  Maybe his first birthday party?

Who knows if he will remember any of that stuff, but I know I will!  I’ll just keep on doing my best to provide him with fun experiences that hopefully someday will be included in his list of “early memories”. 😀

What were your “early memories”?

Happy Birthday Ace!

In celebrating Ace’s first birthday I wanted to write about the most exciting day of my life.  The day that Ace was born.  I started DadThing.com when Ace was about 6 months old, so his birth story has never been told here.

Happy 1st Birthday Little Man!

The Birth Story!

It all started on March 12, 2007.  I was at work on the phone with a customer.  My cell phone rang, and it was Momma.  I put the customer on hold and answered my cell.  She said she was having contractions.  I told her I would call her right back after I got off the phone with the customer (I will never live that one down :D)  Thirty seconds later I called Momma back and we decided it was best for me to come home because the contractions were getting closer together.

When I arrive home Momma is in the shower.  She looks a lot more relaxed than I thought she would be.  I grab my stop watch and start timing the contractions while writing down when each contaction started and stopped.  After a few hours the contractions were down to about 5 minutes.  I call the doctor and was told it was time to go to the hospital.

I grab all of the bags that I had packed and ready for the occasion.  We get in the car, take the dog to Momma’s parent’s house, and then make our way to the hospital.  After arriving at the hospital we make our way to Maternity.  I get handed a packet full of paper to fill out (which I totally screwed up because I was so nervous).

After a few minutes we were walked back to the “observation room” where Momma was hooked up to all kinds of monitors that recorded the strength of her contractions and her and the babies vital signs.  Not long after she was hooked up to the monitors a nurse opened our curtain and walked in.  She informed us that Momma’s blood pressure was elevated and she needed to relax…easier said than done.  We spent what seemed like eternity in this small curtained in room that was barely big enough for the bed, the monitoring equipment, and me.

All Momma wanted to do was stand up.  This is what made her comfortable at home and she knew this would make her more comfortable here.  I asked the nurse if Momma could stand, but the nursesaid “No!”.  They were afraid that with Momma’s elevated blood pressure she would pass out or something.  So Momma had to just stick out the pain the best she could. (I gotta give a hand to Momma here.  She was tough and stayed strong!)

Finally, we were moved to a delivery room which was a bit more comfortable, but they still wouldn’t let Momma stand.  I made a call to Momma’s Dad and let him know that we had been admitted.  His job was to call everyone on the list that wanted to be at the hospital when Ace was born and let them know that the time has come.

In the delivery room Momma had to lay on her side.  Her blood pressure kept going up.  The nurses were freaking at this point and decided to give Momma some magnesium sulfate.  The magnesium was to keep Momma from having seizures!  That’s right seizures!!!  Very high blood pressure causes seizures!  I started to worry at this point!

Momma was all about not having an epidural, but due to her high blood pressure the nurses and doctors decided it was best to do the epidural so that Momma could relax and hopefully her blood pressure would drop.

After the epidural was administered the nurses turned out the lights and told us to go to sleep…we both passed out in record time.

I was woken by the lights turning on (after what seemed like a 30 second nap) and a nurse entering the room letting us know that it was time!  Holy shit!  It was time!  Although I had to do none of the pushing, none of the breathing, none of the tearing, none of the bleeding…I was nervous!  I stood there like a zombie.  I forgot most of what we had learned in the parenting classes.  I did my best to comfort Momma.

Momma’s water hadn’t broke yet, so the nurse broke it for her.  I saw it all.  I huge splash of brown liquid.  Brown because Ace had pooped in there.  The little booger couldn’t wait.  😀  They ran a small hose up in there and flushed the baby factory with water to get all of the marconium (a.k.a.  poop) out.

I just stood by Momma’s side as she pushed…and pushed…and pushed…

My cell phone rang.  I looked at the caller ID and it was my Dad.  Do I answer it?  I knew he was driving in from out of town and wouldn’t call unless it was important.  So I answered it.  He was lost.  I was giving him directions, but I don’t know my way around the city very well.  Momma asked who the hell I was talking to.  I told her my Dad was lost.  Momma was yelling out directions in between pushes.  (Another thing I will never live down.)  Once I got him headed in the right direction the cell phone was turned off so that I could fcous on the task at hand.  😀

Momma didn’t have to push much longer (she is a good pusher) and I could see the top of Ace’s head.  A few more pushes and his whole head was out.  I couldn’t see his face though.  The doctors suctioned out his mouth and nose.  A few more pushes and his shoulder came out.  One more push and he flew right out of there into the doctors hands.  The doctor placed Ace on Momma’s belly.  I just stood there staring at him in amazement.  Momma was doing the same.  I didn’t cry.  I didn’t smile.  I didn’t say a word.  I just stood there in total amazement.

The doctor asked me if I would like to cut the cord.  I snapped out of zombie mode as I was handed a pair of scissors.  He pointed at the area for me to cut.  I clearly saw where to cut, but had to ask him…”Right here?”…just to make sure. 😀  A few snips with the scissors and I realized that I just set the little guy free.

He was now on his own.  No longer would Momma’s body supply him with what he needed to survive.  He had to breath.  He had to eat.  He had to poop and pee on his own.  He was a real, live person!

They took Ace over and cleaned him up, weighed him, measured him, and checked all of his vitals.  I was still just standing there…amazed!  Momma had to tell me to get the camera and go take some pictures.

 

ace-baby-first-day-home-from-the-hospital

He weighed 6 lbs. 8 oz.

I remember saying “Hi” to him.  It was weird hearing myself say, “Hi Ace!”.  He didn’t exist in this world a few seconds ago.  Ace was someone that had only existed in my imagination up to this point.  I remember putting my finger in his little hand and having him grab a hold.  Still chokes me up to this day…

I remember the nurse then wrapping him up, putting that tiny little hat on him, and letting Momma hold him for the first time.

ace-looking-into-his-moms-eyes

Momma was a natural.  She knew what to say, how to hold him, how to act…she truly was a natural!  And I was so proud of her!

A few minutes later Momma handed Ace to me.  I had never held a small baby and was nervous about it, but ya know what?  It felt very natural…even though I probably looked extremely awkward and nervous.  😀

proud-dad

And that’s how it all started.  A year ago today.  Me…proud…a Dad.