Niklas used to love these.

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  • 2007-06-04: I had planned to post a big update yesterday, but things came up. Given that one handed typing is not my forte, I'm afraid that brevity will be the watchword for a while. Anyway, Niklas had a good weekend. His ever increasing mobility necessitated the addition of those outlet cover deals and his interest in the plants and the stereo (he loves the rock) means that further baby-proofing will come with the quickness. He also had his third haircut.

    Due to recent slacking, I haven't mentioned that Niklas spent Memorial Day at Jai Patel's third birthday party. He had a fabulous time watching (relatively) big kids play, getting bounced about on one of those inflatable bouncy things, biting Andrya and just hanging out looking cute.

    Here are some new, non-hockey injury related pictures.
    2007-06-05: Niklas had a good time today. He played on the floor a lot, went for a walk with Tammy and enjoyed eating some food. We've recently upped his bottles to eight ounces from five, so he's been in especially good spirits come meal time. He hasn't been any less voracious with the eating, though. The combination of his aggressive eating style, his booster seat that has a lap belt but no shoulder straps and my broken left arm resulted in a dinnertime mess the likes of which have not been seen since this. On the plus side, I learned that Niklas is ok with having green beans up his nose.

    Here's a picture of me and Niklas that Greg from the Phantoms took a couple of weeks ago. I like it better than Greg's more recent work.
    2007-06-11: What's Niklas been up to? I'm glad you asked. He's been getting much better at sitting up by himself. Andrya got him a cool little chair that sits about six inches off of the ground and has his name on it an everything... a picture would probably help, but the camera is way over there. Anyway, he sat and played yesterday (on the floor, not the as yet unphotographed chair) for almost ten minutes. With the ability to sit, though, comes the ability to get seriously aggravated when the sitting breaks down. He demonstrated this today by falling over backwards (to great comedic effect, what with his feet over his head and whatnot) and screaming until I built him a block tower to knock over. Speaking of knocking things down (pretty sweet segue, huh? No? I blame the medication), we were down in Bloomington over the weekend and Niklas's Grandma and Grandpa Meeker brought some classic '70s and '80s toys out for him to play with. Easily the most popular was a set of concentric cups with animals on them that could be stacked into an eleven animal high tower of awesomeness. Niklas took great delight in knocking the cups down, often before I had a chance to get more than three or four stacked up. We played that game for so long that it seemed like the baby equivalent of cricket (note that cricket takes a long time to play). In addition to the tower smashing, Niklas had a good time hanging out with his grandparents. They went for a walk, Niklas met the neighbors and there was even a classic pee debacle.

    Coming tomorrow, tales of Niklas hating on birds, sleep and chicken (I know chickens are birds, but the context is completely different).

    2007-06-12: So yesterday I said I'd be writing today about Niklas's weekend of battling royale against birds, a normal sleep cycle and chicken. Instead, I'm going to go with this Simpson's quote: "I've got a headline for you, 'Local Man Is Liar'." I'll get to that stuff in the near future, but for now I'm just going to mention that Niklas grabbed three handfuls of poop during a diaper change today and post 9000 words worth of pictures.

    2007-06-13: So when we're down at Andrya's parents' house, Niklas sleeps in the same room as Andrya and me. This gives us the opportunity to experience his nighttime ruckus in all its glory. Saturday night (Sunday morning, whatever), he started wailing at about 4:30. This is nothing unusual, as 4:30 is the traditional diaper changing hour. Typically, once his butt is dry again, he goes right back to sleep. This time, though, after Andrya had changed his diaper, he kept wailing at Who-like decibels. I suspected that he had some sort of ghost detecting ability and he was detecting ghosts and that he was not a fan of the ghosts. Andrya, using her superior non-ghost suspecting intellect, determined that he was instead outraged by the birds singing outside the window. She closed the window and Niklas went right to sleep. Niklas is a city boy and has no time for nature.

    We were down in The Twin Cities That Aren't C-U because Andrya had a meeting on Sunday afternoon. The meeting went a bit long, so I had to put Niklas down to sleep before Andrya got home. He had been sleeping for about half an hour or so when she got back. We packed the car up, put Niklas in his car seat and were off. Unfortunately, the move from the Pack-n-Play to the car woke him up. This was not completely unexpected. What was completely unexpected was the fact that Niklas then proceeded to refuse to go back to sleep until we were almost to Chicago. He wasn't fussing or anything, just not sleeping. He laughed and giggled until I gave him his pacifier. Then he laughed and giggled while playing with his pacifier. I tried putting the sunshade up on his car seat so it would feel more like he was by himself and that it was time for sleep. He enjoyed playing with that, too. On the plus side, he wasn't awful or anything the next day.

    Niklas had his nine month checkup today. The trip to the doctor's started off real well with random passers-by complementing Niklas on his good looks. Once at Dr Sharma's office, Niklas behaved in spectacularly good fashion. He was more intrigued than irritated when the pricked his finger for a hemoglobin test. He cried for about five seconds or so after getting a couple of shots, but that was the alpha and omega of his unhappiness. The tale o' the tape: Niklas weighs 21 pounds, eleven ounces (75th percentile), he's 27 3/4 inches tall (50th percentile) and he has a normal sized head.

    Niklas has started to almost crawl. He gets into the crawl position, propels himself forward a couple of inches, falls down and giggles. I suspect I'll be spending a great deal of time running him down here in the near future.

    There are a few new pictures up. They feature Chicago's newest nine month old, Niklas.

    2007-06-14: Niklas has spent the past couple of weeks protesting, loudly, that his 6:00-ish bedtime is too early for a man of his advanced age. In lieu of listening to him scream for twenty or so minutes each night, we're going to push his bed time back by half an hour. This is the biggest victory for the protest movement since Vietnam. I'm sure he'll think this later bedtime is great until he finds out that I'm going to spend that extra half hour each day tickling him. I know your weak spots, Niklas!

    2007-06-19: Niklas's doctor thinks his top teeth are about to come in. I would refer anyone looking for a second opinion to his wailing and escalated propensity for chomping on anything remotely near his mouth. Sounds like teething to me. As an added bonus, Dr Sharma thinks it's not his front two teeth that'll come in next. Rather, he'll be sporting this look. Outstanding.

    Despite all of the teething, Niklas had a lot of fun over the weekend. Andrya went to brunch at Niklas's Godmother's house on Saturday, so Grandma Meeker came up to help me look after Cap'n Yell. This enabled me to delay the debut of my one armed diaper changing method. Niklas had a lot of fun playing with his Grandma, knocking block towers over and rolling about. On Sunday, Niklas presented me with some fabulous Father's Day presents. That afternoon, we went to a cookout at Jared and Dana's were Niklas got to play with Aaron and Laila (Dave and Malia's daughter), both of whom are about seven months old now. A good time was had by all with the possible exception of the downstairs neighbors who were treated to a 30 minute Niklas "Bonzo" Smith floor drum solo.

    2007-06-20: We've been leaving Niklas in charge of his bottle quite a bit lately. This backfired a bit yesterday when (brace yourself, this is a shocker) he grew weary of eating and set his bottle down in his highchair seat in lieu of the conveniently located and quite appropriate tray. Upside down. Needless to say (but say it I shall; take that, need!) messiness ensued. It was only after we had cleaned the formula off of the floor a couple of times that we realized that he had created a resevoir under the seat pad that, had Andrya not cleaned it up, would have provided a steady stream of nourishment to hungry floor imps were our floor indeed overrun with imps, which to the best of my knowledge, it is not. Well, there's this one.

    Blah, blah, pictures, blah.

    2007-06-22: Who loves eating cereal? Not Niklas. We've tried giving him Cheerios twice in the last few days. He enjoys picking them up and looking at them, but so far, he has no interest in putting them in his mouth. This, by the way, is the same guy who tries to eat this with some regularity. I can see where he's coming from, though. Everyone knows that Honey Nut Cheerios are much better. Still, you've got to crawl before you walk. Speaking of which, Niklas will now drag himself across the floor for distances of up to a foot before resorting to rolling about. Progress!

    2007-06-24: We took Niklas to the park today. It was his first ever ride on the CTA. The train was on-time and not at all crowded, so I'm sure Niklas now has unrealistic expectations. Anyway, a good time was had by all. Niklas had a great time shaking his head about looking at trees, a girl's soccer game and a guy with a leaf blower. The only downside was that Andrya was feeding him some green beans at the time. The result? Hilarious messiness. After that, we played on the swings for a bit. That was quite popular:

    Here are some new pictures. Like action shots of poop? You're in luck!

    2007-06-26: Guess who was up at 5:15 this morning? Yes, I suppose that painfully unfunny "wacky" morning djs were up, but given how this site is not called, Niklas would be a better (and for our purposes, more accurate) guess. He entertained himself (and, to a lesser extent, me) with his musical babbling stylings until about 5:45 at which point he was quite insistent that he be allowed out of his crib. Since Andrya had left for a meeting in scenic Milwaukee but moments before, the task of liberating Niklas from what he considered to be woefully inadequate accommodations fell to me. While my left arm no longer looks like something out a George Romero movie, it's still not up to the standards required for Niklas maintenance. Fortunately, Niklas flops about his crib so much that it only took a few seconds for him to wander close enough towards the railing for me to scoop him up football style. When I set him down on the floor, I noticed that his diaper needed changing. I was extremely fortunate in that he was only wet. The one handed diaper change is tricky enough without poop being involved. Way too many minutes and under the breath swears later, Niklas had a clean diaper and was playing up a storm. Normally, my favorite thing to do when playing with Niklas is to build block towers for him to knock down. At 6:00 in the morning, though, I just open the door to his closet and let him wreak havoc upon any and all of the toys we keep in there. I set him down five feet or so from the closet door and left him to it. The rolly polly is starting to lose out to the inch worm as his favorite means of conveyance. This meant that I got to enjoy five feet worth of crazy-fast leg driving action that only slowly propels him across the floor do to the fact that his arms apparently don't feel the need to work toward the same goal as the rest of his body. Eventually, he made it to the closet and spent a good hour or so devising spectacular animal train crashes. Don't worry, though, the railroad has good insurance. After that, Tammy came by to give him his breakfast (the one armed diaper change is one thing, wrestling him into the highchair with its altitude and whatnot is another). He ate with the quickness and then went down for an early nap.

    2007-06-28: I'm mailing it in today. Here is a list of things that, to my dismay, Niklas is fascinated with:
    • my turntable - both the platter and the arm are, apparently, great fun to paw at
    • the receiver - so many knobs and buttons!
    • plants - he loves leaves, especially how they can be ripped off of the plant and shoved into his mouth
    • the fireplace - he particularly likes the rocks that are in there for whatever reason
    • door hinges - I have no idea what that's all about
    • magazines - taking copies of Sports Illustrated and The Hockey News off of the coffee table is a great source of amusement for Niklas
    It might be time to get some sort of baby fence. Do they even make baby fences? Maybe we'll just get a border collie.