A Night to Remember

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The night is almost over, so I’m going to give it the benefit of the doubt and say that this has been one of the better evenings we’ve had as a family in some time.
Many of the normal events transpired: I arrived home from work, the three of us all sat down to dinner, and went out for a walk/wagon ride in the pleasant weather. Before coming in to bathe Bobby, we kicked a little soccer ball up and down the parking lot Bathtime was fun and was followed by bedtime for Bobby, who went right to sleep.
Normally at this point, Chanel and I do our separate things: one of us might watch a movie while the other does something with a computer; I might be online while Chanel scrapbooks. Tonight, however, was different because we talked. To each other. As adults.
We didn’t discuss money problems or stresses at work. Negativity didn’t enter the conversation at all I guess I’m just reeling from the experience of having an intimate (using the non-sexual definition of the word, as in "not superficial") adult conversation. It was that enjoyable. :-)

He Can Walk!

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Up until a few weeks ago, we might have been close to a point at which there would be a concern about our son not showing much of an interest in getting around on his own, but not really. You see, up until a few weeks ago, he didn’t crawl, barely scooted, hadn’t attempted cruising, but would walk everywhere he could so long as he had one of our fingers in each hand from which he could draw support.

Fast forward to this past week and the situation could not be more different! He started off by dropping one of our fingers so he could pick things up and carry them around everywhere. Then he realized that when he wanted to walk and we were somewhat less inclined to have our backs inclined in order to support him in his walking efforts, that he could just stand up on his own! First, he pulled up on furniture, but then was successful at doing it on his own with no external support!

When he pulled up on furniture, the potential for cruising was obvious and he was suddenly able to traverse nearly the entire living room. Oddly, as soon as he knew he could move around the room’s perimeter along the couches, he saw a more direct route across the middle and started crawling.

So he did it all pretty much completely in reverse to what you’d expect a kid to do, but he can now crawl, cruise, stand, walk a few steps, and even lifts his leg when in front of the stairway (oh boy). All this was accomplished within the span of a week–maybe a week and a half, and all within 2-3 weeks of his first birthday. He’s already cutting things close to the deadline, just like his ma and pa.

Reasons People Associate with Each Other

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I started reading "The Tipping Point" by Malcolm Gladwell recently. We decided one day that we really ought to try to use some of the gift cards we’ve managed to accumulate. My B&N card dated back to Christmas ’07. :-) about time I used it, eh?

As it turns out, this author also wrote "Blink," which I very much enjoyed, so I am looking forward to this one.

So far, one of the things that caught my attention was the results from a University of Utah study. The study finds that if you ask two people separately why thay are friends, they’re each likely to indicate that they share similar views and attitudes. However, upon further examination, they actually share similar activities.

Another study showed that when asked the name of your closest friend, you’re likely to answer with someone similar to you in age and race unless there is someone geographically closer to you.

Put the two together and we find that we befriend the people we do things with and live close by for convenience. Wemre not seeking out our friends, we surround ourselves with potential friends and immerse ourselves in environments to meet them.

So the question is, who do you want to be your friend? How do you spend your time and what kind of people are you attracting to yourself? Basically, look at a friend of yours that’s 5 years older and ask youself if that’s where you want to be in 5 years. Who do you want to be friends with?

A Tribute to Single Parents

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As a man who works full time as a production manager while starting an energy saving business essentially from scratch and working on a unique network marketing/online sales opportunity, I have a newfound appreciation for single parents.

You see, from the time I leave for work in the morning, I am essentially living the same lifestyle as an unwed father: my kid is being taken care of by someone else and I have all the stress associated with bringing in enough money to support myself and my family (compounded lately with the stress of uncertainty of the economy) Then, similarities continue when I get home in that the next two hours are really the only time I have with my little guy. To make matters worse, there are many a night that I have to spend at networking events, evening meetings, and of course the occasional doctor’s appointmentand or Saturday training session further limiting the time I have with my mini me.

Everything I do is with the intention of having more time with Bobby as he grows and to be there more often when the next kids come along. Still, in the back of my mind I am tearing up to Cats in the Cradle.

Which brings me to my new found appreciation for single parents, because although we share these similarities, I know the person (wife) watching my child has his best interests at heart. Even though we have difficulties where she feels like she’s spending all her time with the baby and I feel like I’m not spending any, I know it could be far worse. I know that so long as Bobby and I have Chanel that we’ll be ok. At the same time, I cannot imagine the difficulties of a single parent.

Work defines the days while the child is in day care; evenings are defined by the kid’s needs. There’s no time for yourself, no time to relax. For persevering against all the obstacles, for making the hard sacrifices for the kids when a two parent family would not have to, I salute you.

What’s With Your Blog’s Name?

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I was asked this recently and I suppose I should provide an answer. RoaLPh is an acronym for Ruminations of a Lawnchair Philosopher, as the blog’s subtitle shows. Of course, then comes the question, “what the heck is a lawnchair philosopher?”

Growing up, I have fond memories of time with my family. One such memory involves visits from my grandparents, we called them Nan and Pop. They would come over on weekends throughout the year for a visit and, at least according to memory, most visits would have Pop out on the front yard, smoking a cigar under the shade of our big silver maple tree. He’d be sitting in a lawnchair and reading his newspaper.

Eventually, the rest of the family would make our way out to the area with our own chairs and we’d converse on a variety of subjects, everything from the latest political news to whether aliens exist. We’d talk about abstract science like what the Universe might look like if you could look at it from the outside, to real world situations like what to do if X were to happen.

Looking back, Pop was the Aristotle of the Lawnchair Philosophers. He was the one that asked a lot of the questions, and the rest of us, pupils of a sort, attempted to answer them.

I suppose time will tell if I’m Plato. :-)

Edit: Despite the personal meaning the name has to me, in the interest of having an even somewhat memorable blog name, I have decided to drop the RofLPh title. My apologies to anyone who like it.