Posts Tagged ‘ Christmas ’

I’ve Heard Of Sleepwalking, But… Sleep-Eating And Sleep-Playing?

Saturday, January 4th, 2014

3 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

On the way back from spending Christmas at Nonna and Papa’s house, a very peculiar thing occurred in the car, which happened to be the Lexus LS 460 that I was reviewing last week.

You had fallen asleep with a snack bar in your hand.

An hour later, your hand moved, causing you to subconsciously grasp the snack bar again and bring it to your mouth.

About that time, Mommy whispered my name and told me to give her the camera.

Between the two of us passing the camera back and forth to each other, we were able to capture a 6 frame historical timeline of you going from A) being a asleep, B) rediscovering your snack, C) eating your snack in your sleep, and D) waking up because you ate the snack bar.

I don’t want it to seem like this was a matter of a few seconds, because actually, it was a span of over several minutes!

Maybe I should start leaving a snack up by your bed at night, so if you get hungry in the middle of the night, but don’t want to bother actually waking up, you could just reach over and enjoy a snack.

Mommy and I have also caught you sleep-playing with your toys.

It’s kind of freaky, actually, to know that we put you to bed hours prior, yet there you are laughing and narrating what Mater and Donatello are doing.

The couple of times it’s happened, when we step into your room to check on you during the middle of it, you seem just as confused as we are.

I’ve heard of sleepwalking before, but never sleep-eating or sleep-playing.

As for me, if I could sleep-work, I would be happy. It’s so hard forcing enough time into my schedule to get everything done.

Then again, if I could sleep-sleep, that would be even better.

Okay, I’m going to bed now.

 

Love,

Daddy

 

Disclaimer: The vehicle mentioned in this story was provided at the expense of Lexus, for the purpose of reviewing.

P.S. Here’s a collection of my Toyota family reviews so far; just click on title to read the full story:

2014 Lexus LS 460: 2014 Lexus LS 460 Review, From The Dad’s PerspectiveJourney To Howard’s Chapel (The Church Built Into A Rock)Ironically Driving A Lexus To See A Dinosaur Named Junkasaurus WrecksWhat Parents Do When The Kids Are Asleep With The GrandparentsGrandma Regifts As-Seen-On-TV “Perfect Polly” To Great-Grandson; I’ve Heard Of Sleepwalking, But… Sleep-Eating And Sleep-Playing?

2013 Avalon Hybrid: 2013 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Review, From The Dad’s PerspectiveA Family That Recycles Together Doesn’t Decompose

2013 Toyota Rav4: 2013 Toyota Rav4 Review, From The Dad’s Perspective

2014 Toyota Tundra: Dad Gives 3 Year-Old Son A Monster Truck For Birthday… Sort OfNashville Dad Introduces 3 Year-Old Son To Country Music3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Build-A-Bear3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Little River Falls, AL3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Mountain Driving3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Canyon Land Park3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Canyon Mouth Park

2013 Toyota Sienna: We’re Ready For A Family Road Trip… Minivan Style!It’s Officially Cool To Drive A Minivan Now

 

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Grandma Regifts As-Seen-On-TV “Perfect Polly” To Great-Grandson

Thursday, January 2nd, 2014

3 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

On Christmas Eve, we took you to go visit one of my grandmas; Nonna’s Mama.

Though you’ve visited her throughout your life, I feel this time was when the light really came on for you, as you curiously confirmed what I explained on the way there:

“Your Grandma is Nonna’s Mama?” you asked.

I see how you are starting to process the concept that a family is more than just a Daddy and a Mommy and a kid.

Also as of recent, you are understanding a family can be less than that, too, as you explained to me one of the characters of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, via Netflix:

“That owl doesn’t have a Mommy. He just has a Daddy.”

We took my Grandma a special Christmas gift, Perfect Polly; which is a “lifelike parakeet” that “never needs feeding.”

(Every time we go to see my Grandma, she always talks about how much she enjoys looking out her window and watching the birds eat seeds from the feeder.)

However, my Grandma instantly offered Perfect Polly to you…. and you gladly accepted. For some reason, you renamed the plastic bird “Sherry.”

Seriously, how random is that? Who would you even know with that name? That’s like naming a bird “Linda” or “Tammy” or Brenda.”

Just like how I started recently making you photo collages to accompany these letters I write you, I noticed that my Grandma keeps a photo collage of family next to her on her bulletin board; many of the pictures being of our family over the years.

Granted, you’re 3 years old, and your attention span is only so long. So after a little while, you and your cousin Calla decided to comb the halls with Papa, in a community wheelchair you found.

Of course, to you it’s not a wheelchair; it’s probably a monster truck, somehow.

I’m glad we got to see my Grandma. I want you to remember her.

Even if you spent half the time playing in the hallway, at least you did get to speak with her and she was able to see how big you’re getting.

After we left, we took you and “Sherry” to go see some Christmas lights in the Lexus LS 460 we were driving for the week; for my car review I was working on.

This Christmas we didn’t really venture too far into the Santa Claus aspect of things.

It was almost like you weren’t quite ready for that.

I feel that we kept things a bit simpler. Our Christmas holiday was more about spending quality time with family.

Speaking of, you were quite fascinated by our fancy ride in the Lexus as we drove through one of the biggest Christmas light displays I’ve seen in a while.

As Nonna put it, “This is like being in our own limo!”

You even got to see Mickey Mouse! (The blurry red figure in the upper left side of the collage.)

I like keeping things simple and nostalgic and eccentric.

Ultimately, aren’t those things what family is anyway?

 

Love,

Daddy

 

Disclaimer: The vehicle mentioned in this story was provided at the expense of Lexus, for the purpose of reviewing.

P.S. Here’s a collection of my Toyota family reviews so far; just click on title to read the full story:

2014 Lexus LS 460: 2014 Lexus LS 460 Review, From The Dad’s PerspectiveJourney To Howard’s Chapel (The Church Built Into A Rock)Ironically Driving A Lexus To See A Dinosaur Named Junkasaurus WrecksWhat Parents Do When The Kids Are Asleep With The GrandparentsGrandma Regifts As-Seen-On-TV “Perfect Polly” To Great-GrandsonI’ve Heard Of Sleepwalking, But… Sleep-Eating And Sleep-Playing?

2013 Avalon Hybrid: 2013 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Review, From The Dad’s PerspectiveA Family That Recycles Together Doesn’t Decompose

2013 Toyota Rav4: 2013 Toyota Rav4 Review, From The Dad’s Perspective

2014 Toyota Tundra: Dad Gives 3 Year-Old Son A Monster Truck For Birthday… Sort OfNashville Dad Introduces 3 Year-Old Son To Country Music3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Build-A-Bear3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Little River Falls, AL3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Mountain Driving3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Canyon Land Park3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Canyon Mouth Park

2013 Toyota Sienna: We’re Ready For A Family Road Trip… Minivan Style!It’s Officially Cool To Drive A Minivan Now

 

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2014 Lexus LS 460 Review, From The Dad’s Perspective

Wednesday, January 1st, 2014

3 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

After reviewing four different Toyotas over the past couple months, you and I got a really special treat for the week of Christmas.

On Christmas Eve, “the nice man” drove to Nonna and Papa’s house where we were staying in Alabama to pick up the 2013 Avalon Hybrid we loved so much and replaced it with… a 2014 Lexus  LS 460!

It would be an understatement to say this is the nicest car I’ve ever driven or ridden in.

As Mommy put it, “This is like being in a private jet!”

Christmas morning, “the guys” (that’s you, me, Papa, and your uncle Andrew) took the Lexus out for a spin; just to see what it was capable of.

When you have access to a luxury car with 4.6 liter, 386 horsepower, four cam, 32 valve V8 engine, you need to find somewhere to go; in style and speed.

At 8:23 on Christmas morning in the small mountain town of Fort Payne, AL, there just aren’t a lot of people out.

We owned the road.

Not simply because we were basically the only car on it, but because we were driving the equivalent of a fancy flying car.

The Lexus LS 460 has a special setting called Sport +, which basically enables to run fully loaded.

Yeah, we liked that setting.

I loved looking around the car seeing everyone get sort of thrown back against the seats as the Lexus quickly transitioned into higher gears.

(Seatbelts on and speed limits obeyed, of course. Well, at least I’m positive about the seatbelts part.)

The Lexus LS 460 has so much power, that going 70 mph feels like 50 mph.

It feels fast just sitting at the stop sign.

Needless to say, “the guys” loved testing out the Lexus.

And to imagine, I haven’t mentioned where we actually drove it!

I have plenty more to say about the car, as well as, our random and quirky adventures we took in it, so stay posted.

To be continued…

 

Love,

Daddy

 

Disclaimer: The vehicle mentioned in this story was provided at the expense of Lexus, for the purpose of reviewing.

P.S. Here’s a collection of my Toyota family reviews so far; just click on title to read the full story:

2014 Lexus LS 460: 2014 Lexus LS 460 Review, From The Dad’s PerspectiveJourney To Howard’s Chapel (The Church Built Into A Rock)Ironically Driving A Lexus To See A Dinosaur Named Junkasaurus WrecksWhat Parents Do When The Kids Are Asleep With The GrandparentsGrandma Regifts As-Seen-On-TV “Perfect Polly” To Great-GrandsonI’ve Heard Of Sleepwalking, But… Sleep-Eating And Sleep-Playing?

2013 Avalon Hybrid: 2013 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Review, From The Dad’s PerspectiveA Family That Recycles Together Doesn’t Decompose

2013 Toyota Rav4: 2013 Toyota Rav4 Review, From The Dad’s Perspective

2014 Toyota Tundra: Dad Gives 3 Year-Old Son A Monster Truck For Birthday… Sort OfNashville Dad Introduces 3 Year-Old Son To Country Music3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Build-A-Bear3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Little River Falls, AL3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Mountain Driving3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Canyon Land Park3rd Birthday Monster Truck Road Trip: Canyon Mouth Park

2013 Toyota Sienna: We’re Ready For A Family Road Trip… Minivan Style!It’s Officially Cool To Drive A Minivan Now

 

We’re Ready For A Family Road Trip… Minivan Style!

It’s Officially Cool To Drive A Minivan Now

 

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This Christmas Felt More Like Thanksgiving (And Back To The Future)

Wednesday, January 1st, 2014

3 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

Today is New Year’s Day, but it feels to me like we’re a week into 2014 already.

I think it’s because your 3rd birthday was about 2 weeks before Thanksgiving, and Thanksgiving was a week closer to Christmas than it normally is.

Maybe I’m sort of stuck in a time warp continuum. I don’t know if this more like being back to the future or back in the past.

Somehow, Christmas felt more like Thanksgiving to me.

But not just because of that time warp continuum thing. It’s because this Christmas, I actually did what I guess people are supposed to do at Christmas:

I turned off all the lights in my head except for one and realized: Hey, I’m grateful and thankful for all the blessings in my life.

While I’m disconnected from 99.9% people living on this planet, because I’ve never heard of them and they’ve never heard of me… plus 100% of those who already came and went before I ever ended up on planet Earth, I am connected to enough right now to make me feel alive; to remind me that life isn’t simply a grand scheme taking place inside of a computer chip in somebody’s brain; at least, I think that’s what the plot of The Matrix was about.

There’s something about the actual origin of Christmas that at least peripherally points to the meaning of life.

To me, I would simply say that the meaning of life is to give life meaning, which requires being involved in other peoples’ lives.

And that’s something I was very aware of this Christmas.

As a family, we are by default those people who influence each other, and bring meaning more than anyone else we know.

So to think that I’m really nobody that special or famous or great in relation to entire world, it is both rewarding and humbling to know that I am a VIP in your eyes.

I remember back a couple of months ago during my lunch break from work, scurrying back and forth between Target and Toys R Us, trying to figure out who had the better selection of Disney’s Planes toys.

Mommy had given me the task of picking one out for you. My instincts told me to pick El Chupacabra, based on my predictions of you liking how he looked and as a quirky way to celebrate our shared portion of Mexican blood.

After all, I’ve bought you enough toys now to have a decent idea of what impresses you.

Without any prompt, the day after Christmas, you discreetly sort of pulled me aside in a way that a 3 year-old boy does, and told me, “Daddy, I like that plane you got me.”

I don’t think you could have known that was one of the few gifts that I had complete creative decision in picking out; Mommy chose most everything else herself, from the gifts we got for you.

It may seem like a simple story or even just a fortunate coincidence, but the fact you made an effort to tell me how you felt about that $4 plane I got you… well, it made my day.

And my Christmas.

 

Love,

Daddy

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Potty Pride: “They Don’t Make Azteks Anymore”

Thursday, December 26th, 2013

3 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

As I was lying down on the floor in the aftermath of watching you open Christmas gifts, you announced to to the whole family that you needed to go potty.

You recruited your Uncle Andrew to accompany you to the half bathroom, which is basically connected to the living room, where everyone was.

Not only did you want him there for moral support, but you wanted the bathroom door open so the rest of us could be aware of all the excitement.

There you sat down on your training potty, with your face between your knees as you looked for… results.

Uncle Andrew sat across from you on the actual potty, seat down of course, as he acted as your coach.

Once you realized you were through doing the deed, you immediately looked up at him and proclaimed, “They don’t make Azteks anymore.”

You then added, “They don’t make Pontiacs anymore either.”

I’ve got two different theories on why you decided to announce what I’ve taught you about the demise of both Azteks and Pontiacs as we’ve sat in Nashville traffic everyday going to and from school.

One is that you were so deep in thought as were going potty, your brain focused on car facts to get you through it; to serve as a motivational distraction. Then, by the time you were done, you decided to share that news with Uncle Andrew.

The other theory, held by Uncle Andrew himself, is that in the likeness of a situation where two dudes try to change the subject after a seemingly akward shared experience, one says to the other, “How ’bout them 49ers (or other relevant sports team)? Heck of a game, heck of game.”

Either theory could be valid.

However, based on the look of your face as the training potty was being emptied into the big potty to be flushed, I think you were anything but ashamed.

That’s a look of potty pride, if I ever did see it.

 

Love,

Daddy

 

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