Thursday, April 30, 2009

Where He Gets It

The other day, Diana and Elijah were playing in the back yard. The weather was nice, but chilly. 47 degrees. Eli was engaged in some high-level dirt pushing, so Di decided to run in and check email. From our office window, she has a complete view of the yard, so there wasn’t too much mischief he could get into. Yessiree. No trouble for that boy. None at all.

Of course once Eli thought the coast was clear, he immediately ripped off all his clothes. By the time Diana ran outside, he was stark naked and shivering. Knowing he was in trouble, he waved his hand frantically while yelling, “Hi!” and “Funny!”

Then I got this email from Diana:

“It summoned my own toddler days, when my Mom received the "’Your baby is naked in my front lawn romping on a pile of leaves.’"

So all this time it was just a mutant nude gene he got from his mother. Anyone who knew Diana during her hippie dippie Grateful Dead days came to this same conclusion months ago, I’m sure. But now I can gleefully say, “He gets it from you,” when we have to re-clothe him 5 times a night.

On a related note, my brother had to watch Eli while I was out of town last night and engaged in a heated nude battle of his own. Every time Steve left the room to grab a beer, Eli would frantically strip in the hopes he could be naked before Steve got back. Steve would catch him in the act and shout, “Hey! I don’t want to see that!” And Eli would reluctantly get dressed.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


A few months ago I described Elijah’s desire to get nude when he sleeps. Resulting in us having to stoop to duct taping his diaper closed.

Well, I’m happy to report that this duct taping solution is another absolute failure. No amount of duct tape, handcuffs, or super glue will keep this child dressed. Almost every night I peek into his crib and will find that he has pulled so vigorously on his diaper that all that remains is a tiny belt of diaper material attached by, you guessed it, duct tape.

But this desire to show the world his bits and pieces has expanded dramatically in scope. If we don’t keep a close eye on him every hour of every day, he’ll be out of his pants and diaper faster than you can say “circumcision.”

Today, we decided to let him just be nude. There is a theory of potty training that suggests letting your toddler be free and easy. Apparently he or she will be so embarrassed by making an accident on your leather couch you value more than your car, they will beg for advanced potty training.

Did it work? Hmm. It depends on what you mean by “work.” If you mean “gleefully urinating from his high chair and showering Grover with his liquid leavings while shouting 'Pee! Pee!'” then yes, it worked like a charm.

He did not receive an M&M for that.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


There has been a real lack of potty training stories here at HamannEggs. Know why? Because we quit. It was a failure. An utter failure. What was once a boy who couldn’t wait to try pee pee-ing on the potty turned into a boy whose only interaction with the potty was using it as a hat. And his recent adoption of the word “no” means we no longer even have to ask him if he wants to go.

I was fine with the prospect of him wearing a diaper the rest of his life. It would almost guarantee he married someone who really loved him. And think about the time he’d save at taverns.

CUT to this morning. I answered my phone at the office and heard my lovely wife on the line.

“Elijah, tell your dada what you just did!”


I’ll spare you the back and forth, but Eli miraculously peed on the potty. Baffled, I asked how she did it. She did it the Chicago way: Bribing.

I guess she sat Eli down and explained a new game. Every time he sits on the potty, he gets one M&M. Every time he makes something foul in the potty, he gets 2 M&Ms. I had a few questions:

1) Since Eli doesn’t know anything about refined sugar, how did he know the value of M&Ms?
2) Why doesn’t he just sit on the potty twice as much without peeing to get the 2 M&M reward?
3) Where does Diana hide the M&Ms so I can steal them late night?
4) Does he get a peanut M&M for going doo doo?

Apparently the bribes worked because the child has been asking for M&Ms all day while yanking down his trousers.

Now this is a prospect I can see him adopting for the rest of his life. In my mind’s eye, I see him standing at the urinals next to the CEO of his future company and exclaiming, “I get two M&Ms!”

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


I got back from a meeting today and heard this message from Diana and Elijah on speakerphone:

“Hey, we’re going to the aquarium today! Elijah, tell your dad what we’re going to see at the aquarium today!”


“Tell you dada what we’re doing to see today.”


“We’re going to see sharks. Tell your dada we’re going to see sharks!”


A few hours later I asked Diana for my blog download. You know, those little tidbits that translate into things I can make fun of but really use as an excuse to talk about myself.

“Just say he was the cutest boy at the aquarium.” Yeah, the Hamanneggs readership is dying for the scoop that our son is cute.

After demanding (whining) for more details I got some gems.

Apparently his archenemy was a giant ray that kept scaring him by swimming by when he engrossed in tiny fish.

Eli butted his way to the front of a pack of East Indian girls to get a better view of a fish tank. Rather than beat him to a pulp, they descended on him, petting him and stroking his hair. Technically, this counts as “just say he was the cutest boy at the aquarium,” but it has added creepiness to make it blog-worthy.

And to top if off in a Sitcom “Aww” moment, when Diana and Eli finally got to the celebrated shark tank, Eli crawled into Di’s arms and promptly fell asleep.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


On a whim, Steve and I took our sons outside for some sports action. I was starting to worry that when asked in grade school, Elijah and Finn would answer planet Earth consisted of a 10X10 square of dirt in my backyard.

So we grabbed a deflated soccer ball and a miniature football and hit the grass. The boys loved it. It resembled a bad Clorox commercial, compete with the oversized baseball hats turned sidewise. Except I don’t think the good folks at Clorox would cast two hung-over dads with protruding bellies and tattoos.

My secret hope that Elijah would be a natural at sports was dashed after the 20th time he tripped over the soccer ball. Yes, it is a lot to ask of a kid who hasn’t been walking for more than 6 months. But he’s the 99% percentile in height. If this continues and he doesn't end up good at sports he’ll just be a weird giant.

I know it will fall on my narrow shoulders to teach him sports. One look at my DVD collection and you’ll know he came to the wrong place. I don’t think “The Lord Of The Rings” Trilogy was written with jocks in mind. I do watch a fair amount of baseball, but mostly as an excuse for beer drinking.

Steve and my sphere of football throwing accuracy was 3.5 feet. And even then Steve managed to jam his finger.

Thankfully, Finn and Eli became very excited over the prospect of collecting dandelions. And we still had 16 years until Eli’s eligible for the NBA draft. And there was baseball on.

Friday, April 17, 2009

99% Baby

Diana asked me if I wanted to attend Elijah’s 2 year old doctor ‘s visit. I scrunched up my nose and said, “Isn’t that a mommy job?” Fighting the urge to stab me with something, Diana asked what exactly the daddy jobs were. Knowing 9 out of the 10 things I could say would deduct points towards Friday Night Beer Drinking Night, I said, “Um…going to Eli’s 2 year old doctor visit?”

I meekly asked if he would be getting inoculations. Diana said most likely. I made a beeping noise and picked up my iphone.

“What? An advertising emergency? I’ll be right there!” But no dice. I was in for any and all needles poked into my son.

Of course, all morning Eli was in great spirits. As he gleefully leapt into my arms, I looked at him sadly.

“Man, you don’t even know how bad you’re going to get it today. Probably in your butt.”

But Eli just kept singing the Sesame Street theme song in his hilarious robot monotone.

Time came to head to the doctors. I started to sweat. I did not want to be party to this. As we drove there was happy as ever. “Mo Goldfish? Outside play?”

When we arrived, Eli b-lined to the germ-covered trucks in the corner of the room. In the distance, we heard a baby shrieking.

Eli cocked his head and said, “Baby sad?”

I said, “He’s probably getting shots. Look. I’ll cause a distraction and you make a break for it. I’ll meet you at The Exploratorium in one hour.”

But the nurse called his name and we were led back into the little room. Our doctor was cool and nice and answered all our weird questions and measured him. 99% yet again. He is the Yao Ming of two year olds.

And then…she said, “That’s it. See you in a year.” I sprang up from the crinkly paper table.

“That’s it? No shots?”

“Nope. No inoculations today.”

I could see on Diana’s face she was debating asking for unnecessary shots just to make it worth my while. But we ended up leaving to rescue Grover from the groomers, the dog equivalent of inoculation.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Recently, I was laying down in Elijah’s room. Diana was tidying up and Eli was executing a series of body slams on my stomach. I looked around and asked, “What was in this room before Eli was born?”

Diana thought for a moment. “I dunno. Your guitars?”

I think that scene sums up precisely how much our lives have changed in the last two years.

I can’t honestly remember the days before Elmo and milk in the mircrowave for exactly 40 seconds and my baby size Star Wars t-shirts and waking up to baby steam rollers and irritating the heck out of Grover and Elephants and duct taping diapers and counting to ten and the alphabet and tremendously hilarious tantrums and Diana’s desperate attempts at cleaning and Goldfish crackers and Everybody Move and the Eli Grover dance and failing potty training and Diana’s lovely songs and Pixar movies and poking me in the eye and crawling and walking and running and “Luv you.”

Oh…those words. Those words kill me every time. “Luv you.” Eli, you’ve made me truly understand those words in the last two years. You’ve made me understand what it is to love your mother. To love that mentally unstable dog. And to love my life.

Happy birthday. You’re the greatest kid in the world. I’m proud to be your dad.

Lamest. Blog post. Ever.

Monday, April 13, 2009


Elijah turned two yesterday! Well, technically tomorrow. But in his mind it was yesterday. Allow me to set the Wayback machine to two weeks ago to explain.

Diana and I wrestled with the party vs. non-party for weeks and weeks.

On the non-party side, making your friends and family come over and shell out their hard earned yen for stuff Eli will more than likely chuck out the window is a tough sell. On top of that, Diana and I cannot possibly have a party without the proper party favors (booze), which means we would be spending way more than necessary in these, our troubled economic times.

On the party side, we were due for a party. And making your friends and family buy your kid toys dramatically increases the chances that he’ll get some cool Star Wars thing that I can co-opt for myself.

So we decided, yes, let’s have a party. We sent out cute electronic invitations and waited for the RSVPs to roll in. And roll in they did. In the negative. It seems in our excitement about having a party, we neglected to notice we scheduled the festivities on Easter Sunday. Who knew our families and friends would choose to celebrate the second most important day of the Christian calendar over eating a Finding Nemo cake and drinking tepid Sierra Nevada?

Luckily, Eli had no idea we were planning a party (dear Eli of the future, we’re sorry), so we scaled back to Diana’s parents, her brother and his future wife, and a surprise visit from Eli’s girlfriend Ryan (Rhona).

Yesterday morning, the day of the party, Diana informed me that we were officially telling Elijah that his birthday was Sunday, rather than his official April 14th, so as not to confuse him. Um, ok. He’s 2. I think we could tell him his birthday is every Thursday and is real father is Elmo and he wouldn’t be confused. The only potential problem is if he read about us lying to him in some kind of…um weblog.

Aside from the awesome APTBWSS Di’s dad and I put together, he got some cool books from Rhona, and a kick butt toy piano and outside water thingy from Di’s parents.

But in true so cliché it should be stitched into a pillow fashion, his favorite present was two helium balloons purchased on a whim at Dominicks. He refused to release them from his sticky hands for the last 48 hours and inquires about them constantly when not in the same room. “Ah ba-oons? Ah ba-oons?”

This is usually the point where I break down and write a super mushy paragraph about how much I love Eli. This entry is a bit long and his real birthday isn’t until tomorrow. So expect a lamer than usual post tomorrow.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Office Season 2

Every year, my office throws an Easter egg hunt on Good Friday. They cover the floors with chocolate and candy and then let employees’ kids grind them into the carpeting. Shortly after, our cleaning staff quits in mass.

This year, after much cajoling, Diana and Elijah joined me. They were both shocked when they arrived at the 24th floor.

Diana was surprised the walls were, in fact, not covered with blood, there were no boiling cauldrons and my cube neighbor was not Beelebub.

Elijah was equally surprised. He had no idea that my office was filled with candy, magicians and hundreds of kids. No wonder I spend so much time there.

Despite not having any refined sugar since his 1st birthday, he jumped on the floor and began collecting treasure. But, hilariously, he had no interest in actually eating booty. Or candy.

Suddenly, Diana and Elijah got a peek into my office life. People began begging me to attend meetings and approve stuff and write things. I would say, “Um…my family is here,” and attempt to introduce them. The offending employees would say, “Do you think your son could write a couple Porsche headlines?”

After being dragged into two consecutive impromptu meetings, I eventually tracked down my family. Diana was spinning Elijah round and round in my office chair. I thought, “That is the most fun that has ever happened in my cube.”

Eli then grabbed two month’s worth of work and threw it on the floor. I thought, “No, that is the most fun that has ever happened in my cube.”

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Eat This!

Sorry I’ve been a bit lax this week with the blog. I’ve been preparing for, and attending a big fat meeting in sports car land. But now I’m back. Unfortunately, my lack of involvement with my son is even more heartbreaking because I don’t have any good blog worthy stories.

But I have a small, but funny one.

While trying to convince myself out of doing a tour of the Atlanta International Airport bars, I got a call on my cell. Seeing it was “Home,” I picked it up immediately. This is what I heard:

“Tee hee! Tee hee!”

“Eli! What are you doing?”

“Tee hee! Tee hee!”

“Eli! (Weird muffled sound).”

I said what any normal person would. “What the heck is going on?”

Diana said, “Huh? Who is this?”

After a few moments of piecing things together a la Sherlock Holmes, here’s what happened. Diana and Elijah were playing on the bed. Tickling and general roughhouse. At some point in their hilarious melee, Eli grabbed the phone and tried to get Diana to eat it. By shoving it into her mouth.

Either her tongue knows my cell phone number by heart or she accidentally bit the “Last number dialed” button. Anyone why has made out with Diana knows which it was. Rwor!

I don’t have any recent Diana pictures at work, so here is a shot of her laughing at Steve and a belly dancer from years ago.

Monday, April 6, 2009


Last Saturday night, Diana was chasing Elijah around nakedly upstairs while I prepared a mildly delicious dinner. Normally, I sacrifice a lemon to the knife gods before I begin, but I was distracted by Grover’s sad eyed sulking at not being able to bite Eli. So wouldn’t you know, I sliced the bajeezus out of my finger. I heard the distinct “tink” of Asian steel hitting bone.

Diana and Eli arrived shortly after for nigh nigh kisses. She found me standing at the sink with my life literally pouring down the drain. Knowing Diana has a weak stomach for blood, I thrust my gnarled finger at her face. She recoiled with the appropriate amount of horror for me.

As she ran, I called her back. In my hazy blood loss mind, I thought this was an opportunity. This could be Eli’s first experience with gushing fluids. Besides pee pee. I fuzzily thought that if he saw my goey blood, maybe he’d become a doctor in the future. Or maybe an ambulance chasing lawyer.

So I knelt down and displayed my horrible, horrible finger to my baby boy. He took one look and said, “TV?” No, no TV. Sheesh.

But I left an impression. The next morning and throughout the day, Eli would toddle over and inquire about my bandaged finger. I’d display it for his inspection. He’d say, “Ouch?” and then grab my finger tightly before I could escape.

Sometime later I’d awake, vaguely aware that some terrible thing had happened and wondering why I was covered in stale Cheerios. I’d see Eli toddle over and say, “Ouch?”

And I’d display my finger for his inspection.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Horsey Tricks

A few months ago, I introduced you to Elijah and my concept of horsey. Which involves him sitting on my stomach and me thrusting my hips in the air in an attempt to buck him off. Weird? Yes. Fun? Also yes. But as he has gotten bigger, my ability to thrust him without giving myself lower back distress has lowered.

So today I introduced him to the real, non weird concept of horsey. After much convincing, I got him to climb on my back and I walked around on my hands and knees. All while yelling, “I’m a horsey!”

He loved it, but it didn’t have the element of danger that his old stomach thrusting horse had. So he slid around on my back, sidesaddle a la Annie Oakley. He fell off a few times and laughed hysterically. Until he smashed his head on our bed frame.

I instructed him to hold on to the horsey. Much to my dismay, the best place to hold on was my adam’s apple. So he would squeal with glee and I would squeal with lack of air.

Enter Grover. Apparently, the sight of a grown man on all fours carrying a toddler on his back is the dog equivalent of Christie Brinkley. That dog could not help himself from mounting me (us).

I’d shout, “Grover get off!” And Elijah would shout, “Go go! Geh oh.” And he’d squeeze my adam’s apple. Then I’d wheeze, “Guh…guh…life…passing…before…eyes.”

Thursday, April 2, 2009


First of all, let me say this: I love Sesame Street. Not only does it make me feel a level of comfort only a stuffed Grover hidden in my bedside table can give, but it has amazingly taught my still under two year old son his ABCs, his numbers, and his animals. Although he does think Snuffleupagus is part of the animal kingdom.

But Sesame Street has taught Elijah a terrible, terrible concept: “Mine.”

There is a pretty funny episode where all the Sesame Street characters contract
“Mineitis.” Where they grab things that don’t belong to them and shout, “Mine!” A few intrepid survivors including Elmo (of course) and NBC’s Brian Williams (huh?) search for a cure.

The lesson, of course, is that being selfish isn’t cool and if you want to be like Elmo and Brian Williams you should share.

Unfortunately, the lesson Eli learned is that if you shout, “Mine!” and grab stuff, you get stuff.

Now, this isn’t really a big deal for me because I’m much stronger than Eli and if he grabs my iphone I can wrench it out of his hands and say, “No, MINE!” And then watch as he descends into an adorable hissy fit.

But it is significantly worse when he gets Mineitis around his little cherub playmates. According to Diana, Eli spent the whole playgroup time yesterday yanking stuff out of his buddy’s hands.

While the other moms looked at Diana with that special look that says, “Bad mommy. Bad bad mommy,” she wrung her hands and said, “He’s sick. He has Mineitis. We’re seeing a specialist. Brian Williams.”

But it’s just a phase, right? Right?