Fatherhood My Experiences as a Father...
February 5 to March 4, 2000 (10th month)

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Monday, February 28, 2000
Tonight Maeve climbed up all of the stairs.  Mom had gone up stairs, and Maeve chased her.  Jill didn't believe that Maeve had done it all by herself, so I had Maeve do it again just to show her.  When she got to the top Jill was congratulating her and celebrating, and then she told Maeve that we would have to go out and get a gate this weekend.

Thursday, February 24, 2000
Maeve climbed up her first stair today.  I'm ready to have her walking, even though it will be a lot more work to keep up with her.

Tuesday, February 22, 2000
Maeve and I watched Emergency!  We discussed how EMS has changed in the last 25 years.  In this particular show, a prison inmate had tried to escape off the prison roof and was stuck on a ledge above a window.  The idea was that Johnny would go down a rope, put a harness on the prisoner, and they would both go in the window just below.  On the roof there was a structural steel assembly that the air conditioning unit was mounted on.  There was also a big pipe.  The clever firemen put the backup line around the structural steel, but the main rope was around the pipe.  I pointed out to Maeve that a pipe is a poor choice when there is structural steel around.

Since it's TV, when Johnny was trying to get the harness on the prisoner, the prisoner leapt onto Johnny.  That sudden extra load broke the pipe, which let them take up the slack in the back up rope.  Johnny's helmet also fell off.   I explained that losing your helmet isn't a good thing, but at least Johnny and Roy usually use the chin strap.  Too many firefighters I know either remove the strap altogether or fasten the strap around the back of the helmet, so it stays out of their way.  I always liked the idea of keeping the helmet on my head, so I used those straps.

Sunday, February 20, 2000
When we lived in Pasadena we lived with a German Shepherd/Black Labrador mixed dog.  He used to like to try to chew on my shoes.  I would wiggle them around and he would jump around trying to get them in his mouth.  Today Maeve was trying to get Jill's foot.  I'm not sure if I think it's good or bad that Maeve would do that, but it did make me think about that dog.

Saturday, February 19, 2000
We got about 9 inches of snow over about 24 hours of snowfall since yesterday at noon.  Three hours after the snow stopped the streets had nothing on them but water.  I love how Massachusetts has so many snowplows.  Jill said it still wasn't enough snow, but it was nice that we finally got an extended snowfall.

Wednesday, February 16, 2000
Apparently Maeve now knows to point to her nose when you ask her where her nose is.  Jill was trying to show me, and Maeve was not participating.  Instead she was scratching at her diaper.  I did the only thing a good father could do - I asked Maeve to show me her diaper.  I don't think Jill was impressed, but she should have been.

Sunday, February 13, 2000
Today in Sunday School we were talking about how advertising sometimes misleads people.  The conversation turned to Pokemon and other similar fads that appeal to youths.  Several people in the class, especially Matt and Kristi, told Maeve to not get involved with Pokemon.

Saturday, February 12, 2000
I learned in high school biology that "nature tends towards dissociation".  Trees can stand straight up for a while, but eventually they fall.  Once they fall, they don't just lay around.  They rot (dissociate).  The Sphinxes in Egypt have eroded (dissociated), just like the Grand Canyon.

Maeve also loves dissociation.  She must take every toy out of her basket and spread them around on the floor.  She doesn't want to play with the toys.  Once she spreads them around (dissociates them), she looks for something else to play with.  She does the same with the clothes in her dirty clothes basket.  She likes to take books off the shelf and array them on the floor.  She does the same with newspapers and magazines waiting for recycling.

Fortunately I have an easy way to distract her from these activities.  One of Maeve's toys is a pole with five colored plastic rings.  If she sees me stacking the rings up on the pole, she feels compelled to immediately crawl over and take the rings off.  She doesn't want to play with them; she just wants to dissociate them.

Monday, February 7, 2000
I saw a survey from "Marriage Partnership Magazine" listing the most common terms of endearment in order.  Their results were: Baby 44%, Sweetheart 41%, Dear 39%, Lover 32%, Darling 31%, Honey 28%, Sugar 24%, Angel 20%, Pumpkin 13%, and Beautiful 6%.  I don't think I use any of those for Jill.  If I'm in a good mood, I'll use Chickie Cutie.  If I'm a little more subdued, I'll just use Woman.  I can see not getting much response for Chickie Cutie (or even Chick), but I would have expected Woman to be somewhere on the list.

Sunday, February 6, 2000
Today Maeve went out to lunch with Jill, April (the DCE intern) and some of the Senior High kids from church.  The total bill came to $42.  Jill declared that $5 was a little more than 15%, which is Jill's minimum.  April said she thought it should be more like $8.  Somehow Jill convinced April to go with the $5 amount.  Jill has always had problems with tips.

Once Jill and I had an $18 meal.  Jill calculated the tip as $1.50 was 10%, 5 cents was another 5%, so 15% was $1.55.  (I later asked her to explain the math step by step to me, but she couldn't.)  Jill asked me to round up to $2.  I wasn't pleased with the service, so I was willing to be "generous" with a $2 tip.

I usually just divide by 6, know that will give me 16.6%, so I could round down slightly if it would give me an even number.  Jill prefers to divide by 10, and then also add that amount divided by 2.  Since she has been using that method, Jill has done pretty well.  Apparently today she stopped after dividing by 10.  I am disappointed in Maeve for not catching it, but April definitely should have caught it.  April has had more education and can voice her concerns.  It's likely Maeve tried to tell Jill that she was off, but that no one understood her mumbled speech.

Saturday, February 5, 2000
I haven't mentioned diaper consumption for a while.  This weekend, though, Maeve and I got out the dictionary to find out what we could learn from the roots of the word "diaper".  This was prompted by my thinking that "dia" is Spanish for "day", so perhaps dia-per means one per day.  In that case, we either need to use a lot fewer diapers or call them something else.  The dictionary offered no useful information on the word diaper, with the only applicable definition being, "a baby's breechcloth".  I did find, however, that the di- prefix of Greek origin means two.  Per means "for each".  This led Maeve and I to a dilemma.  Do we use the similarities with the Spanish word and use one each day, or do we go with the Greek meaning and always double up the diapers?  I like the idea of one each day, because it will reduce costs, trash, etc.  However, if I am supposed to be changing the diaper as often as we do now, but using two each time, it is only fair to Maeve that we do that.

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