Only One of Us Feels Better Now

This picture was taken last night. It’s taken me 24 hours to come to terms with being violated in such a disgusting manner. Garrett ERUPTED after a feeding and blasted me on the chest, neck, ear, chin, and leg.

The first blast was gross. Justin happened to be in the room and he burst out laughing. The second blast was more forceful and reminded me of the “Dancing Waters” fountains in front of the Bellagio Hotel. The third (and final) blast concerned me to the point where I imagined Max Von Sydow in the corner of the room flinging holy water at Garrett while screaming, “I CAST YOU OUT, DEMON!!”

I need another shower!


The Vanishing Spit-Up

GWE discovered that if you let Garrett have 30-40 sucks on the bottle and then immediately burp him, he has a much better chance of not spitting up all over himself, us, the furniture, the plants, the aquarium, etc. We’ve been diligent about getting a burp out of him before we continue to feed him. Last night was no different – It was just past 1am and I had just finished feeding Garrett his bottle. I burped him well and then he lazily “lounged” in my arms in his milk-drunk stupor.

After his feeding, I decided that I was hungry as well. So, I went into the kitchen and made a small bowl of cereal – Frosted Mini-Wheats to be precise. With Garrett cradled in one arm and a cold bowl of cereal in the other, I made my way back to the sofa to watch a little television. As I sat, I balanced Garrett on my left leg and placed the cereal bowl between my legs. I had a bite or two of cereal when all of a sudden Garrett’s eyes popped open. He “flung” his little body forward and proceeded to make a burp/spit-up/heaving sound that reminded me of a large cat coughing up a wet fur ball.

Immediately, I assumed that he spit-up everywhere. I was waiting for the hot (and then instantly cold) splash of vomit to cover my shirt and pants…..but nothing. I looked at my clothes, no spit up. I checked out his Onesie, no spit-up. I looked on the sofa, no spit-up. I looked at the carpet, still – no spit-up. At that point, I thought that I was in the clear – no spit-up! It was just an awful burp.

And then I looked at my lap and saw the bowl of cereal… WHITE, MILKY cereal. His head has been directly over it when he burped. I honestly couldn’t tell if there was spit-up in my cereal or not. It looked ok….but all of his spit-ups look WHITE and MILKY!!! I used the spoon to poke at each exposed mini-wheat. Nothing……

At 1:15am I seriously thought – “do I continue eating the cereal or not?” I looked into Garrett’s eyes for answers. He stared back at me, smiled, and then farted.

I decided to throw the cereal out.

An Open Letter to “Future Me”

Each of us has a “Me” and a “Future Me.” “Future Me” is the you in the future who is stuck dealing with the consequences of the actions from the “Me” from right now. Allow me to explain – suppose you went drinking with your friends and you had a few too many. (This is the action of “Me”) You did it because you were feeling good; you were hanging out with friends; or maybe you were trying to impress some girls. Life at that moment is good! “Future Me” is the you a few hours later who is in pain and blowing chunks because the past version of you drank too much. You see – “Me” acted recklessly knowing that there were no immediate repercussions. “Future Me” is the schmuck laying on the floor of the bathroom “praying to the porcelain god” even though he wasn’t the one drinking – that other version of you was! (It’s complicated, but I know you get it.)

So I would like to address this blog posting from the “Current Me” to the “Future Me” –

“Dear Future Me,

You are tired. You are so beyond tired that you are bound to make mistakes. I’d like to help you avoid one now. In the kitchen (and the picture above), you will notice that the Similac POWDERED Baby Formula is entirely too close to the Sugar Free Hazelnut POWDERED Coffee Creamer. One of these goes into your coffee and one of these goes into your child. So far, you have survived a full month of 2:00am and 4:00am (one-eye shut) formula mixings and feedings without making a mistake. However, I would suggest moving the creamer – otherwise, your baby will be getting a Hazelnut surprise during his next feeding and you will get more nutrition in your next cup of coffee than you expect.

Thank you….and I apologize for the Mexican Fiesta dinner you will be dealing with later on!

All the best,


Just a Little off the Top

The clock was ticking. Garrett only had seven days left with his penis intact. I begged him to “use it or lose it,” but he ignored my advice and wisdom. Instead, he continued to drool on himself and poop into a diaper. On the eighth day, (like a gunslinger in the Old West) the Mohel arrived on our doorstep looking for my baby’s schmeckel. He was carrying a satchel of tools, a few extra Tallit (religious robes), and a gleam in his eye. Someone was about to lose their foreskin!

For those of you who don’t know, Jewish law states that a circumcision is a ‘mitzva aseh” (“positive commandment” to perform an act) and is obligatory for Jewish-born males. It is performed at a “party” where family members and close friends gather to hear the child’s Hebrew name, watch a foreskin cutting, and then nosh on mini deli sandwiches. At this party, it is better to be a guest than the Guest of Honor!

Justin’s circumcision was the first one I had attended. It was done by Dr. Fred Kogen. He performed a wonderful, heartfelt ceremony and then he proceeded to remove by son’s foreskin with three or four quick moves. I remember thinking, if he’s this good at circumcision – I bet he’s got fantastic turkey-carving skills at Thanksgiving!

For Garrett’s circumcision, we asked Dr. Kogen to return to do the honors. Once again, he performed a touching ceremony! However, without going into too much detail about the actual procedure, I can tell you that Garrett’s reaction was far different than Justin’s. When Justin was clipped, he cried (even though he was completely numb.) When the time came for Garrett to get cut, we laid him on the table in front of the Mohel. Grandpa Bob held his upper body in place as I held down his right leg and my father held down his left leg. And then, there was silence…..

In the few seconds before the Mohel went to work, Garrett stared at all four of us defiantly. The look in his eyes said, “I know what you’re about to do. Go ahead and take it! I’ve got eight more inches to work with!!”

After it was all said and done (and in accordance with Jewish ritual), I took Garrett’s foreskin (and the umbilical cord that had just fallen off) and went outside to bury it. To this day, Justin and Garrett’s foreskins are buried next to each other under my lemon tree.

If my lemon tree ever decides to produce fruit and I’m able to make juice out of the lemons, I will bottle it like a fine wine and label it, ”Dos Prepucio Vineyards” aka (“Two Foreskin Vineyards”)

My Life with a 9 lb. Terrorist

It is 3:54am and I am awake. I am not tired….I passed “tired” four days ago. However, being awake at this time of night does have its advantages. I usually have my moments of greatest clarity in the middle of the night when I am alone and the world is quiet. Tonight is no different.

I love this kid and he is truly amazing. BUT….I’ve been thinking about Garrett and what this new child has “inflicted” on us since his birth and I have come to one simple realization – my baby is a terrorist!! Even though he is two weeks old, he has managed to effectively use both psychological and chemical warfare on us. He has performed torture techniques on GWE and I that would make a Guantanamo Bay guard blush!

The psychological attacks came first and in two forms. The first was the sleep deprivation. Neither GWE nor I have slept more than a few hours consecutively since Garrett’s birth. I realize that I have less to complain about than GWE (since she was the one actually delivering our massive child while I sat nearby taking pictures), but damn it – I’m tired too! We started off with an hour of sleep here and there. Now we’re up to three consecutive hours of sleep – sometimes. Any normal person can handle that for a few days….but, after a few weeks it starts to take its toll. I knew I was tired, but didn’t realize it fell into the category of “deprivation” until I looked it up and realized that I had a number of the symptoms: muscles tremors, memory confusion (someone asked me for my cell number and I honestly could not remember it!), bloodshot eyes, irrational irritability (hey – fuck you, you fucking fuck!!), and malaise. There have been a couple of times over the past two weeks when I’ve had trouble retaining a coherent thought. I now know what Dr. John was singing about when he wrote, “Brain Salad Surgery!”

The second was “the crying.” With our first son, we decided to try using the “Dunstan Language” to decipher what he wanted. “Neh” meant “Hungry”; “Eh” meant “Chest Gassy”; “Err” meant “Butt Gassy.” It worked well and we were able to communicate with Justin from birth. Garrett has proven more of a challenge. All we’re able to hear from him is “WWWHHHHAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!” Yes, there are only three things that he could need at this point in his short life, but “WWWHHHHAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!” does not narrow it down. And, it gets louder and more intense in a short span of time. Within 5-6 minutes, it sounds like he is being stabbed! I don’t care how patient and understanding you think you are – the sound of this kid crying cuts through your defenses and it’s hard not to get affected by it.

The chemical attacks came next. (In fact, I am writing this after having just been blasted by “The Holy Trinity” – poop, pee pee, and spit-up.) I can handle the pee pee – no problem. I still have a five year old with aiming issues. I’m pretty sure everything in my bathroom has been pissed on at one point or another. Plus, Justin likes to have a conversation with me while peeing and he’s been known to forget what’s going on and turns his body to talk to me while still peeing. You get the picture. So far, Garrett has peed on me, the blinds, the rocker, and the lamp – all while lying on his back on the changing table.

Baby poop is disgusting, but predictable. Garrett makes a grunting sound when he’s going and you pretty much know when he’s done because he looks exhausted. Right now, it looks like dark mustard with seeds. (There is usually a “bomb” of some sort in his diaper. Another act of terrorism!) However, Garrett has sneak-attacked me with poop twice. He has waited until I’ve removed his diaper for changing AND I’m in the process of applying Butt Paste when he has decided to “unleash the hounds” and spray me with poop.

The worst is the spit-up. It usually happens when his head is resting on my chest and he is looking up. With no warning, I hear “BLEECH” and I immediately get a burst of hot, white, projectile, half-digested “milk” in my face, neck, chest, ear, etc. Gross does not begin to describe it. And, what makes it worse is his smile right afterward. I know he feels better, but that smile is just his way of rubbing it in my face – literally!

All in all, we are being tortured by the one we love. If I knew any state secrets, I would have gladly given them up by now. All that’s left is a good water boarding. I love this kid and would not miss these experiences for anything. However, they would be much more enjoyable after a hot shower, a clean change of clothes, and an Ambien!

The Sparkling Rabbi

It was the middle of the night and GWE and I were staring at each other silently during yet another early AM feeding of Garrett. It had been a very long week since the arrival of our new son and neither of us had slept much. As we drowsily looked at each other (and Garrett), it became obvious to me that this week had taken it’s toll in many ways. But, we were both doing everything we could think of to get through.

As the dutiful husband, I lifted by weary head and asked my wife if she wanted anything from the kitchen. She simply asked for more ice water. Since this was the least taxing thing asked of me in the past 100 hours, I was happy to oblige. As I stood in the kitchen, it dawned on me that I too was thirsty. But, how do you quench the thirst of a new (again) Jewish father who knows he will be up most of the night with a screaming/hungry child while watching QVC and rocking this very cute “poop machine” to sleep? I now have the answer!!

I surveyed the kitchen which was packed with new items that were specifically brought in for the Bris 48 hours earlier. I noticed a bunch of sodas and wines that were off to the side. I quickly channeled my inner frat guy and mixed a few things together. Proudly, I marched back into the baby’s room with my purple designer cocktail. I raised my glass and proclaimed that I had created – “The Sparkling Rabbi!”

GWE looked at me skeptically and asked what I had done. I told her that I mixed three parts Sprite Zero (gotta watch the calories) with two parts Manischewitz Kosher Wine. She laughed and then asked to take a sip. After the first swallow, she looked at me in all seriousness and said, “Oh god, that shit is good!!!”

So now you know – when it’s 4am, the kids are crying, and you want something to take the edge off, plus the added bonus of feeling like it’s Passover – make yourself “The Sparkling Rabbi!”