kaden's first blog. our first kid. it's an entreprenurial adventure.

Sunday, March 26

Kaden did a total faceplant in the sand today at the park. I mean an arms splayed, feet up off the ground, mouthful of sand kind of faceplant. So after he falls, he pops back up immediately but is clearly upset. But not because of what you think. He's upset because his hands are dirty.

When did this kid, who used to not care if his hands were covered in his own projectile poop, become a neat-freak? He's a screaming, crying, holding his hands out until a clean them, then smiling and running on to play, kind of neat-freak.

Just when I thought I was getting to know this little friend of mine, he pulls the rug out and changes on me.

He used to hate getting into his chair at dinner, for instance. Now when I say, "ready to eat?" he runs giggling to his seat so fast it gives me a twinge of guilt that we've been starving him. Maybe he was laughing when I tickled him in the vain hope that eventually I would feed him. Maybe his baby fat is just fat and really he needs some assistance from Christian missionaries before he'll be a well nourished child. How am I to know? Not like I've actually done this before or something.

Of course, if he actually WAS starving, then we wouldn't be such a picky eater. Yup, the kid who used to down everything from Adana Kebab to Saag Paneer has suddenly become a picky eater. He'll still eat many things, but he's entered that control phase where he wants to feed himself. (Metrodad recently wrote a great post on the food topic)

This is cute when you watch him fill his face with mac'n cheese just so it's clear that there is no room for that pureed squash you have in your spoon. But it also means that dinner takes an hour as he eats one-single-pea-at-a-time.

I'm trying to adapt, knowing it always probably be like this. This week it's adapting to him going from wanting a really nice 15 mins of storytime before bed, to him demanding to be put straight into his crib so he can go to bed all on his own. Next week he'll want to dress himself, and soon enough it'll be him wanting me to drop him off a block from school so he meet up with his friends and show them how to light farts.

One thing has stayed constant though, he still loves to dance.


New Music

Air: **
Lemon Jelly: ***
A new mix of 40s swing (Duke Ellington, etc): ***
Franz Ferdinand: **** (especially when coming from my cell phone)

Saturday, March 4

Yesterday I got a little glimpse into what this blog is going to be like in a couple years. It was our monthly board meeting (venture backed startups have board meetings constantly) and my friend Marc got a phone call during it. Turns out his 2 1/2 five year old has just learned his mobile number and apparently called him during the meeting. Marc picks up and immediately she pipes in,

"Hi. What are you doing?"
"I'm in a board meeting."
"Is it called that because everyone is bored?"


While Marc's kid seems to be adapting to new technology quite impressively, Kaden seems somewhat anti-tech. Sure he wants my mobile and my Tivo remote, but that's not because of the technology as much as it looks like an excellent chew toy with buttons.

For instance when I try to show him the benefits of streaming digital music, his interest only lasts so long. He seems to love the little experimental music sessions I've been having with him, but only a few minutes go by before he longs for the cold spinning plastic that is Compact Discs.

Like most parents I actively dislike the generally unlistenable category called "kids music." I am trying to show him the benefits of music that is not reminiscent of something a SWAT team would use to flush out hostage takers. He likes the stuff I've been playing, but seems drawn back to the tangible spinning discs. While I frantically try to flip to a new song ("Kaden, wait, we've got over 10,000 of them on the hard drive!") he rambles back into his room and gives the "want" sign up at the CD player.

If you're not familiar with the hand signal for "want" that's because Kaden made it up. Here we are trying to teach him "please" and "milk" and he invents an easier to demand things.

Admittedly it's cute, he points his hand in the direction of what he wants you to manipulate/bring to him/carry him to/use and then turns his hand kind of like he's screwing in a light bulb.

At first I thought, "how wonderful - he can communicate better what he needs and that should lead to less frustration." And it does lead to less frustration... for him.

For Megan and I, he is using his "want" symbol kind of like an old adventure video game. Kaden sometimes just aimlessly points his hand and signals "want" at inanimate objects just to see if they'll do something. It's like he thinks he is in King's Quest and suddenly some wooden board will flip over and reveal an apple core which will somehow, ridiculously, allow him to unlock the secrets of the CD player later on.

Despite the somewhat tiring work it can be to manipulate/bring to him/carry him to/use practically everything in sight, it is wonderful to have him communicating more. He's talking gibberish all the time, with a few basic words (mom, dad, apple, cheese, and thanks to his birthday, balloon). What's even more amazing his how many words he actually understands.

It is common now to come home and excitedly find that he now understands "belly button" and tries to lift up Megan's shirt to show you when asked. I'm predicting that particular trick will go over well with strangers. Let's hope he kicks that habit before kindergarten.


Kaden's new music this week (rated from 1 to 5 stars, with 5 stars being when he is so excited he does something I've never seen him do before - like a triple lutz or something).
Brazilian Girls: ****
Stevie Wonder: ****
Jamiroquai: ***
Kool & the Gang: ***
Cake: **
Spoon: **

I'm thinking next week's music appreciation will include a little Manu Chao, Jackson Five, and Jack Johnson (he did do the Curious George soundtrack after all).

Thursday, March 2

What could possibly be poignant enough for his first birthday.

For those keeping track of Kaden via the age tracker, you'll notice that Kaden turned one years old last week. You wouldn't have known from the blog because I fell down on the job of even posting about it. This is not for lack of trying, I've just found it hard to find the right thing to say.

I started this blog with the idea of keeping it through his first year, cataloging the early "shock and awe" of having a first kid. Originally, this was supposed to be the farewell post for the blog. A nice reflective look back at the year + 9 months and a closing of a chapter.

But I've found this blog to be really helpful. It has helped me take the time to reflect a bit on what has happened that day/week/month, to stay in touch with some friends that normally would have become more disconnected, and even to get some helpful feedback and advice from others.

So, the grand farewell is not to be, we'll push on and I hope you'll continue to listen in now and then. Thanks everyone.

In the meantime, enjoy some photos from his birthday. Both sets of grandparents flew up, and we have some wonderful obligatory shots of birthday messiness.

Here for the album
Here for the slideshow

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