Monday, June 21, 2010

Love to Daddy

Happy Father's Day! Today was M's first Father's Day as a daddy, or as a knowing one, anyway. I was pregnant already last Father's Day, but we still wouldn't know about it for another two months. So this was a very special day. We gave Robert a bath to start the morning, because he was funky and it does not do to be funky at church, at least not in that way. He was in a great mood this morning, smiling and laughing and squealing at the top of his tiny, piercing lungs during the service. Ah well, make a joyful noise, right? There was a baptism for a pair of nine month old twins today, which was very nice except that Robert has decided to be the baby at every baptism and disrupted things a little with his yelling and squirming. M took him out for a little while, then brought him back to finish out the service and for cookie time. The nursery does not operate in the summer, so at least he was not the only loud little one in church today.

After church, we went over to the conservatory for the butterfly show. I bought tickets 2-for-1 on Groupon ages ago, but we'd never used them and today was the last day. It was very neat! It was very hot too, so we couldn't stay too long, but there were so many butterflies, and they were so pretty. The place was crowded, so we eschewed the stroller in favor of the Moby Wrap, and I tried Robert out in the Lotus (front-facing) hold for the first time. He likes it! He likes to be able to look out and reach out, rather than be stuck facing Mom all the time. I coaxed a few butterflies onto my fingers for him to look at, and he seemed very interested. It was a neat way to spend part of our Father's Day afternoon.

I let M pick where he wanted to go for lunch, because this was his big day. He wanted to go to Greek to Me, our favorite local Greek place, but it is closed on Sundays. This stumped him a little, and he almost decided we should go to Taco Bell before I reminded him that he might like to go to Dixie Chili. Dixie Chili has Cincinnati Chili, obviously, but it also has awesome Greek waffle fries, so it eased the pain of the actual Greek restaurant being closed. Robert, worn out from all his good cheer, slept right through the meal and didn't wake till we were leaving. A prince among babies.

As part of M's gift, I gave him what he gave me on Mother's Day, a few hours free of baby duties. Robert and I cleared out and went shopping for awhile, hurrah! We went to CVS and scored a good deal on a big box of Huggies Diapers, where we paid 8 dollars for a box and got 10 reward bucks back. Hard to beat that. The problem is, the diapers they had were size 4, and Robert is not going to be there for awhile. But he will be, and sooner than I think! Diapers don't spoil. No wipes at CVS, either. Boo. We were going to check out the new baby store in town, but it is closed on Sunday too, so instead we went out to the mall to walk around.

I put Robert in the sling again, and made the mistake of putting him in the Hug (tummy-to-tummy) hold because he was sleeping when I got him out of the carseat. Of course, by the time we were in the mall, he was awake and wanting to look around. I took him to Bath and Body works, where he managed to start grabbing at bottles on the shelves, something he can't do from cart or carseat. Very exciting! When I would give him something to look at, he would immediately try to shove it down my blouse like he was the Littlest Shoplifter or something. I managed to avoid committing any accidental larceny and got a couple of things from the 75% off bin, and then we went off to the bathroom to fix the baby. The mall has awesome family bathrooms with nice changing areas and tiny toilets, it was cool. I put Robert in a front carry again, much better, and we headed to Penney's to collect Robert's baptism portraits. I was good and didn't get any of the expensive upsells they wanted me to buy. The pictures themselves turned out great, and I was really happy. After that, we went back to the bathroom, because I had forgotten the B&BW stuff there. It was still there, whew! With that done, we tromped around for awhile and stopped in at a few more stores. At The Childrens' Place, I actually found swim trunks Robert's size, and 25% off as well, so I bought them. Maybe he doesn't truly need trunks, but they're so much cuter than just a swim diaper, and an extra protective layer as well. After that, we went to the Food Court, where I had an Orange Julius and Robert had a massive poop. Back to the bathroom, again. Yeesh.

When we'd finished up at the mall, I stopped by Wal-Mart (no wipes!) and got my papers for the week. I am still mourning the loss of two weeks worth of excellent coupon inserts to a tragic misunderstanding, but time heals all couponing wounds. On the way home, I passed Red Robin, and realized I would have to give M a mulligan on choosing where he wanted his Father's Day meal. Red Robin is M's favorite restaurant, and this one just opened (we haven't been to one in years, thanks to location), and we keep meaning to go. So I went home and told him I was taking him to his favorite restaurant at Robert's bedtime. It took him almost that long to guess what I was talking about, but he was really happy when he did. We had a very good meal, and he said he had a good Father's Day, which was the point all along. From now on, we're on a summer tight-belt footing, but for a last hurrah, this couldn't be beat.

I think it's very important to have a day like this to celebrate fathers. My own father is a wonderful man who taught me a lot of very important things, and who is still a rock of stability and safety in my life. I don't always appreciate him the way I should, but I don't know what I'd do without him. And watching M become a father this year has been amazing. We were both tossed headfirst into the deep end of the parenting pool, but him even more so than me, because he never even had younger siblings. I wasn't sure how long it would take him to get the hang of things, or how he would feel about this new person in our lives. To say he has stepped up to the plate would be a vast understatement. He has taken the curveball that fate threw us and knocked it out of the park. He and Robert adore each other, and he has not once shirked parenting duties or avoided doing something to make my life easier through these first months. Parenting right now is mostly a matter of "baby-wrangling," but I can already see the bond forming between him and Robert that will become a father-son relationship throughout their lives. M and I talk often about how lucky we are to have a healthy, adorable, laid-back baby like Robert, but I know I'm even luckier to have a partner like him. Happy Father's Day.

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