Abstract Photo

My son loves playing with our camera and takes lots of pictures. Most of the pictures are blurry and we delete them. However, sometimes he takes a picture that looks pretty good. He was playing in my office a few months ago and took a picture of the mouse pad (a funky HP one; it was the largest one I could find with a smooth surface).

Click on the picture on the left to see a larger version.

Where has time gone?

Aiden.pngLast Saturday, we celebrated our son’s first birthday. It seems like just yesterday that we brought Aiden home from the hospital. We have learned so much over the last year, have had many sleep deprived nights, but most of all, we love being parents and seeing Aiden smile and be happy (most of the time).

Poorly designed book

I read to our son every night and recently, my wife pulled out a book called Five Shiny Stars. One day she told me it played music (there was a tag on the front of the book indicating it did), but I never heard it. So lately I’ve thought it was broken, so I banged the book against my head and magically it started playing “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”. Last night as I was putting Aiden to bed and reading the book, the son started playing when I turned to the last page (like it is supposed to do) without me banging my head against it. What was different about last night? It was still light outside when we put him to sleep and the sun was sneaking past the curtains. I looked closer at the book and show that there was a photo cell which triggers the song to start. This has to be the stupidest way to trigger music on a book that talks about going to sleep! Normally people read books about going to sleep when it is dark. I would have expected there to be a pressure type trigger to turn on the song.

The art of baby proofing

Having a baby means a lot of things. To me, the latest thing is “baby-proofing”. There are lots of pieces to making a house ready for a baby/toddler to crawl around. The first step was putting up a gate to keep Aiden in the living room. That sort of worked, but the area was too big and still too many objects he could access, so we put in a portable play yard. OK, one room ready. Next was the kitchen. The previous owners had done some baby proofing, but didn’t finish or took it out, I can’t really tell. They had a combination of Tot Lok and other plastic clips. I liked the Tot Lok system as I didn’t have to reach my fingers in the cabinet to open it. So, I replaced some of the locks and installed locks on the rest of the doors and drawers. None of the drawers had the locks and the reason is simple. They’re a royal pain in the you know what to install. Furthermore, due to the panels on the front of our drawers, technically they aren’t even supposed to work. Well, I managed to get all the locks installed and yesterday finished our 2 bathrooms upstairs (the rest of the areas we can simply close the doors).

That’s a start, but not all of it. Since our house was built in 1973, the railing on the stairs wasn’t up to current safety code. When we moved in, there was cheap plexiglass zip tied to the railing to prevent little ones from getting their heads stuck between the rails. First thing I did when we moved in was rip that done; it was cheesy. Now came the time for us to need it. There were a few options, but the one that appealed to me most (and happened to be the most expensive) was to completely replace the railing. Now would be a good opportunity for me to get rid of the cheap looking steel railing and get a nice wood one. My wife said, “whatever, just get it done”. So I recruited my father to find someone to do the railing. Turns out there are only a few people that do replacement railings in San Diego. I got quotes and the railing should be completely installed on Wednesday (I still have to apply the finish which I’ve decided will be a clear urethane). It is looking good and will be another piece that makes our house look more modern.

I still have to anchor some free standing cabinets to the wall, but I’m well on my way to making our house a bit safer for our little one.

Planning for Aiden’s first birthday

Our son, Aiden, is rapidly approaching his first birthday. We’re trying to figure out what to do. Should we have a clown? How about a pony? How about one of those jumpy things? Wow, this is going to be huge. We’re going to spend a lot of time and money planning a party that our son will never remember! Just kidding, we’re not going overboard with his first birthday, maybe another birthday down the line, but why one that he won’t appreciate? My wife has told me that some of the mothers she has run into are planning elaborate parties for their child’s first birthday. What a waste.

New family addition

It’s been awhile since I blogged last and there is good reason for that! On May 3, we welcomed our newest addition to our family, Aiden Pierce Gruby. He has been keeping us busy and I’m sure he’ll do so for the next 18 years!