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Ellie, Year Four: The Birthday

IMG_1083In a way I’ve been waiting for this day, for Ellie to be four. My own earliest memories as a kid are from when I was four. And when I first found out I was going to be a father and I started picturing my life with a child, I always pictured Ellie as a four year old toddler. I pictured playing in the leaves in the fall, building snowmen in the winter, her helping me in the garden, and sitting on the couch watching rock concerts and listening to music. Her becoming four always seemed so far away, and yet after what at times feels like a flash, that moment is here.

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IMG_0915_editWell, here we are. The beginning of a new year and hopefully a fresh start. I have to say, I’m not sad to see 2013 leave. While nothing bad happened last year, it has been one long struggle. It’s hard to acknowledge the things I’ve accomplished because they haven’t come easily. From house projects, parenting, managing the household, nursing myself and my family back from a million colds, to trying to maintain inner peace, this year has left me thoroughly drained.

I really am looking forward to 2014. To have a new outlook and to set some realistic tangible goals. But before I set myself up for failure, I have to reflect back and ask why I struggled so much last year. What was this never ending obstacle I felt I was always trying to overcome?

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Posted in Inner Monologue | 4 Comments


DS_2013_12_04Our big, family Thanksgiving meal is always the Saturday after Thanksgiving at my parent’s house. This leaves our actual Thanksgiving day open to do different things. We’ve had dinner with friends before, watched the parade in downtown Detroit, and even spent it at Denny’s. But this year, we were going to host friends at our house for the first time. I was going to make the whole deal. Turkey (I decided on a chicken because it was just us four adults), stuffing, Brussels sprouts, cranberry relish, mashed potatoes, etc. I even tested dessert recipes so everything would be fantastic. It was going to be my crowning achievement and induction into the ‘club.’ But little did I know, the cards were stacked against me.

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Posted in Cooking, Fall, Family, Holidays, Sick, Thanksgiving | Leave a comment


IMG_0510_editOver the past year, we’ve been searching for the right motivation to get Ellie to actually sit on the toilet instead of being a creepo and watching people on the toilet. So when Aya’s parents sent this book with an accompanying music CD, we were hopeful that this was it!

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Posted in Japanese, Poop, Toddler | 1 Comment


IMG_0457_editThis time of year, especially Halloween makes me ache for my childhood. I can remember so vividly how excited I was going to school on Halloween for the costume parade and the classroom Halloween party. But I also couldn’t get home quick enough to prepare for the evening. Halloween was a big deal at our house and all I wanted to do was get home from school and help my dad to be a part of it. So it’s no surprise that my expectations for providing a fun-filled Halloween were high as Ellie was getting older. And with these high expectations, I sometimes forget that Ellie is only three and Chloe’s only one.

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Posted in Family, Halloween, Holidays, Toddler | 2 Comments


IMG_0089_editWow, Chloe is a year old! Where has the year gone? I can’t believe it’s been a whole year already. When Ellie’s first birthday came around, I was ready. I ready for her to be one. I was ready for the next step. Her first year did not go by fast and her birthday was as much of a celebration for us surviving it as it was for her becoming one. But for Chloe, just as this post is late, I’ve felt behind this whole year.

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Posted in Birthdays, Fall, Family, Food | Leave a comment

I Believe I CAN

IMG_9854_editOne great thing about the end of summer is the garden harvest. We have tons and tons of tomatoes, zucchinis, eggplants, and green peppers. And every year we plan on making salsas, stews, and sauces and preserving them. And every year, we never do. So we scramble to eat everything or give them away before they go bad. But this year, we canned 22 pint size jars of diced homegrown tomatoes!

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Posted in At Home, Cooking, Fall, Food | 1 Comment


KK_2013_09_16aWatch out! Someone has been crawling, faster and faster!

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Posted in Kokomi's Korner | 2 Comments


IMG_9772-editAfter a long night with Chloe, to say that I am less than eager to start the day in the morning is an understatement. You know, one of those nights where you pray for morning to arrive just so the night will be over. Those nights are the worst, and the mornings following those nights are equally as terrible. When you finally get your baby to fall asleep at 5:30am and your toddler bursts into your room at 6:30am brighter than sunshine saying, “daddy daddy! It’s morning!!!” the morning is the that last thing I want to see.

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Posted in At Home, Toddler | Leave a comment


DS_2013_08_15_editDearly Beloved,

We are gathered here to celebrate the wonderful, yet short-lived duration of our dearly departed friend, Naptime.

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Posted in Sleep, The Domestic Specialist, Toddler | 9 Comments