Paternity Leave: Day 23

August 26, 2014 @ 22:37

Sammy let me sleep in a while today, which I always appreciate. Thanks, kid!

Once we got up and going, we took a simple trip to Chipotle and the car wash, then home. I spent the rest of the day doing various things about the house.

First thing was a bit of vacuuming. I was originally gonna get the vacuum out just to get the dog fur off my car’s back seat, but I also did a bit of cleaning around the house with it just cuz I love my Dyson so much; it’s just so good!

Let’s see, what else did I do? Oh yeah, I fixed the illuminated light switch in the bathroom. It wasn’t illuminating anymore, so I took it apart, tightened up some metal bits, put it back together again, and we’re good to go! The hardest part was figuring out which circuit breaker was for the bathroom, because all the labels in the breaker box were wrong. Handy!

I also made some soon-to-be iced tea. That is, I brewed up two K-Cups of English Breakfast (10 oz) twice each, for a total of 40 oz of tea that I can cut with ice and water to make iced tea at my leisure. I keep it in a sealed bottle in the fridge. SCIENCE!

Other stuff included doing the dishes, entertaining the baby, and calling an old friend to tell her about Samantha! Friends not on Facebook must be tracked down the hard way.

Here’s a picture of me and Samantha at Chipotle:

Me and Sammy

My cell phone can apparently take photos using both cameras at once

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Paternity Leave: Day 22

August 25, 2014 @ 20:47

Today was boring. Well, no, that’s not’s fair. Today was uneventful. We went to Philly’s Best for my Monday cheese steak sandwich, then we went to Target for some random household stuff. Came home, hung out, watched the Emmy’s. Monday!

Last night I stayed up too late playing The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds in hero mode, which is really hard by the way! The monsters are slightly faster and “smarter”, but the real kicker is they do FOUR TIMES the damage! This means I die in one to three hits, typically. I haven’t killed Link this many times since I was 5 years old!

Dad’s coming to visit later this week for a few days, which is nice. Matt and Kim (brother and sister, for those not in the know) are out at Burning Man. Or at least, they might be. I hear it rained there the other day. Hard. So hard in fact, they had to close the gate on opening day! It’s gotta be absolute chaos out there. My best to my Burner friends—good luck and Godspeed.

In conclusion, here’s a couple pics of Sam and me:

Sam is in no mood!

Sam is in no mood!

I am happy.  Sam is not.

I am happy. Sam is not.

Now we're both happy!

Now we’re both happy!

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Paternity Leave: Day 21

August 24, 2014 @ 22:26

Last night I didn’t get to sleep until after 4 a.m., so Megan was kind enough to let me sleep in this morning. It wasn’t Sam that kept me up, just general insomnia. Still, Sammy slept great—until about 10:30 or so! Regardless, 80% of the family went on an adventure today!

While leaving Isis to guard the fort, Megs, Sammy, Maverick, and I all headed out to Vasquez Rocks to get some pictures. It was time to present Samantha to the world:

Lion King photo

♪♪ Nants ingonyamaaaaa!!! ♪♪

Other pictures are here:

Vasquez Rocks

A grand adventure! I even wore pants and shoes with laces, since I knew I’d be climbing on rocks and stuff.

In the evening we had dinner and watched the season 8 premiere of Doctor Who with a new Doctor in Peter Capaldi. All-in-all I like him as the Doctor, but Tennant is still my guy. We’ll see how this season unfolds.

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Paternity Leave: Day 20

August 24, 2014 @ 00:18

Today started off very nicely. Megs went to boxing class, while Sam and I slept in. After Megs got home and Sam and I got up, the three of us went out to brunch at Barney’s Beanery in Pasadena.

Sam getting ready

Sam getting ready

At Barney’s, there was an episode of Bones on there, and we discussed it at length because Megs used to watch the show and I didn’t. She was trying to answer my questions regarding this season 5 episode about which character was or was not “the British one”, who was going to end up aiding a serial killer, and who was gonna get killed later. Also Stephen Fry was in it (not the British one I was thinking of).

Here’s Sam out for brunch in her fine sun hat:

A grand brunch out!

A grand brunch out!

We went home after brunch, and I did some chores around the house like laundry, tinkering with the clock in Megs’ car, and moving the front porch thermometer to a wall we can actually see from the front door. I also installed XBMC on the TV Raspberry Pi and re-configured the video game emulator. The upshot of these things is we can now stream pretty much any video file from the network storage drive on the TV, as well as play any old NES/SNES games we want. Living the dream!

Megs eventually dragged me away from my tinkering to play a few rounds of Magic with a new green/white token creature deck she had put together. I kicked her butt three times with my cheap red creature deck, so further adjustments may be required.

In baby news—this is a paternity leave update, after all—Sam’s getting really good at grabbing stuff. See attached image for proof:

Above: Proof

Above: Proof

Other than that, we had a light dinner and started Orphan Black season 2. We are enjoying it so far, even though the show is kinda weird.

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Paternity Leave: Day 19

August 23, 2014 @ 01:06

Today was more government offices. We started with the California Employment Development Department, to try to track down my Paid Family Leave stuff, since there is no Paid Family Leave office this side of Fresno, and I wasn’t about to drive there! They said that this wasn’t the right office, but the lady there was kind enough to look up my information on the system and said that the documents I submitted yesterday should take care of things, so here’s hoping!

After hanging out in downtown LA, Sam and I went back up to Pasadena to take care of Maverick’s license renewal at the Pasadena Humane Society. Nice facility they got there! Their kennels are nice and outdoors and there’s trees and stuff around. Anyways, after taking care of that we went home.

The plan for this evening was to play Magic cards with Matt and Skye, so shortly after I got home Matt showed up, followed an hour or so later by Megan. Skye would be joining us after she got off work a while later, so we started prepping dinner, which was to be grilled stuff on the BBQ. After searching our freezer, I found some chicken thighs, half a salmon fillet, and two small boneless pork chops. Matt brought some potatoes, so we were in business! Or so I thought…

Turns out our grill wouldn’t start. I thought we must be out of propane, so I went to Vons to get some more. I also picked up some garlic bread and asparagus while I was there. However, a lack of propane was not the problem! I deduced it was a bad regulator hose, so off I went again to the hardware store for a new one. Got back home, hooked it up, and FIRE! Yes! Dinner was ON!

We started cooking shortly before Skye arrived, which was a pity, because we were hoping to have everything cooked by then, but oh well. Eventually dinner was great, and afterwards we played a few games of Magic:

Magic: The Gathering gathering

Magic: The Gathering gathering

For the record, my cheap mono red creature deck crushed Matt’s experimental blue/black deck of pain three times in a row. His white heroic deck, however, trounced me thoroughly after that. A lovely night!

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Paternity Leave: Day 18

August 21, 2014 @ 21:13

Today marks roughly the half-way point in my leave. We spent it out in Van Nuys waiting in line for her birth certificate. After acquiring the document and getting us both some lunch, I dropped by the office to use the scanner to scan it in. I need to attach it to a leave claim for my paternity leave so’s that I can gets paid by the gov’munt! Here’s Sammy patiently waiting in the queue at the records office:

She's part English, she knows how to queue!

She’s part English, she knows how to queue!

I am not going to be posting the scanned in version of her birth certificate here, because I am not an idiot.

The rest of the day was fairly normal, and I’m posting this relatively early in the evening because she’s actually snoozing right now. However, now that I mention it, I hear her stirring, so this might be the end of this post. Good night, my babies!

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Paternity Leave: Day 17

August 20, 2014 @ 23:24

Today was spent almost entirely at home. I was awaiting a FedEx package for Kim, since dad originally thought she’s wouldn’t be at her place to receive it, however it turns out that she’s leaving for Burning Man a day later than planned, so she was home today, but by then the package was already en route. What was this important package, you may ask? A GoPro Hero3+ Black Edition! A very slick and Burning-Man-damage-resistant video camera. I took some test stills with it today:

It's me!

It’s me!

Baby

Baby

Megs and the baby

Megs and the baby

Megs and the baby

Megs and the baby

As you can see, it’s got a crazy-wide angle lens! It also came with a waterproof case you can operate it from within, so it’s crazy rugged. For those who don’t know, GoPros are often strapped to helmets of extreme sports folks or put on the end of surfboards–they’re super tiny. I know Kim will get some fun footage with this thing!

On a less pleasant note, I got a lovely letter in the mail today telling me that California will not be covering my leave of absence because they have no proof that I have a child. I faxed them a copy of the birth certificate that the hospital gave us, but I guess that’s not good enough. Guess I’ll be off to some government offices tomorrow to get the official state birth certificate. Then I gotta get it to the department that handles child care leave and hope they get me monies soon.

Anyways since today was spent mostly around the house, I don’t have much to report in the way of adventures. The only time I left the house was when Sam and I took a walk down to the local Starbucks and back, which is 1.4 miles each way. I learned a valuable lesson on walking longer distances with Birkenstocks (don’t). Sam fell asleep in her stroller on the return trip, which was nice of her.

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Paternity Leave: Day 16

August 19, 2014 @ 23:22

A very uneasy quiet has descended on the dining room. Megs went to bed about 10 minutes ago, leaving me with Samantha who quickly started ramping up the fussiness. As a desperate measure, I put her back in her cradle and started bicycling her feet, saying “Feet-feet-feet-feet-feet-feet!”. This made her quiet down, and now she’s just staring at me.

Whoever blinks first gains ultimate suffering

Whoever blinks first gains ultimate suffering

I’m going to try to type this out fast, because I have no idea what’s going on at the moment.

Today was a fairly average day. Got up, fed the baby, and hit the road. I got some lunch at Baja Fresh, then we went to the Glendale Galleria to walk around. Didn’t buy anything, except an iced tea, a pack of gum, and some half-and-half for my coffee at home. A nice day out.

Mall selfie

Mall selfie

Our evening was fairly normal, too. But now…

She’s starting to fuss. I must go.

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Paternity Leave: Day 15

August 19, 2014 @ 00:38

Tonight is a bad baby night. I just spent the last hour holding a crying/screaming Samantha who would not be calmed by anything. I did all the big four: changed her diaper, burped her, fed her, and held her. Nothing. Just screaming. Sometimes all you can do is put in earplugs and deal. Luckily, she hasn’t had a night like this in a while, so let’s hope it’s a fluke. Megs is in nursing her now, so I can write/sleep for a bit.

Rewinding the day, the rest was pretty good! Jacques and Hanh spent the night last night, so they were making pancakes in the kitchen when I got up this morning. They hung out until the afternoon when they had to leave, Jacques for SF and Hanh to visit other family in Riverside. Before that, I ran some errands which included: lunch at Philly’s Best (yum!), returned something to Sport Chalet ($$$), got some cat foot at PetCo (=^..^=), and groceries from Vons (also, yum!). Got home before Jacques and Hanh left, so we all hung out with Sammy for a while.

Hanh and Sammy

Hanh and Sammy

After they left, I managed to get Sam to take a nap.
Wherever she falls, there shall she nap

Wherever she falls, there shall she nap

Which was good, cuz I have some business with hospital bills and day care to take care of. Still trying to lock down day care for Samantha for when both Megs and I are working, but I’ve got a good lead on a trusted nanny, so here’s hoping that works out!

Lastly, here’s some pictures of Maverick getting used to being second banana to Samantha:

Guarding Sam's play area

Guarding Sam’s play area

Ho, hum.

Ho, hum.

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Paternity Leave: Day 14

August 18, 2014 @ 01:15

We stayed home today, aside from a quick jaunt out for lunch at Coral’s in Burbank. After visiting with folks yesterday, we let folks come visit us today. Here’s Megs at lunch, marveling at Sammy being asleep:

Megs is pleasantly surprised that Sammy is sleeping

Megs is pleasantly surprised that Sammy is sleeping

After we got back from lunch, Megs’ father dropped by again today to see Sammy once more before returning to Portland. He brought us a bunch of diapers and some super cute clothes for Sammy. Very nice!
Grandpa Swain, Sammy, and Megan

Grandpa Swain, Sammy, and Megan

After he took off, it was just Megs, Sammy, and me for a few hours, so we hung out, did chores, and finished watching Entourage. Apparently they’re making a movie for the show that comes out next year. We’ll see.

Oh! While I’m thinking about it, I promised photos from yesterday, so here’s mom and Sammy sitting in the (formerly) gold chair:

Mom and Sammy in the "gold" chair.

Mom and Sammy in the “gold” chair.

And by pictures, apparently I mean picture, since I only took one. Ask Megs or someone else for more, I guess.

Guess who’s briefly back in town? This guy!

Me and Jacques

Me and Jacques

Yes, Jacques and Hanh finally got to meet Samantha! Yay! And then Matt and Skye came by! Yay! Friends aplenty, and everybody got lots of baby Sammy time. 😀

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