Thursday, December 31, 2009

News Years Eve 2009

For the last few New Years’ I write a supposedly private note to my son, Elijah. Aside from the weak gag of yelling at my readers for reading the message, it serves the purpose of an official record all my sissy feelings for the last twelve months.

We’re leaving for a fancy party in a few hours, so I wanted to get all my sissy feelings out before I meet my old nemesis, Veuve Clicquot. And I have an additional letter to write this year.

For the record, I don’t write a letter to Diana because she gets her own private letter from me on Christmas morning. And I don’t write a letter to Grover because he finds my writing hackneyed and generally a waste of his time. So here goes.

Dear Elijah,

I’ve cried only one time in 2009. It was when I dropped you off at school a few months ago. I was in the parking lot and it just dawned on me that I loved you so much it physically hurt. And to see you grow up is the greatest adventure I could imagine. I wouldn’t pass up a single moment of this crazy, silly, scream-filled year for a billion dollars.

Next year will be great, son. I promise to go on lots of Dad and Eli only adventures. Especially ones where we go to the puppy store.

You just walked into the office and unrolled my yoga mat and said, “I have to do my exercises, daddy.” I can’t find a better example of why I love you.

Dear Luca,

Well, well ,well. The Silent Man. My dad told me my kids would be different, but I assumed we’d be getting a carbon copy of son #1. I’m so happy you proved him right.

We hardly know each other, but we already have a heap of memories. My favorite so far? When we watched at Jean Claude Van Damme movie late at night because you couldn’t sleep. You just stared at me with those dark eyes of yours and I thought, “I had no idea I could love another kid as much as Eli. But…there it is.”

I know you’re trying to figure it all out, behind those dark eyes. But let me help you with one answer: Your mommy and I love you more than anything in the world.



p.s. This was the sissiest of them all.

Monday, December 28, 2009

A Quick Reason Why I Love Diana

6pm tonight. Luca was so desperate for food that the actual taste of milk in his mouth made him furious because it wasn’t in his belly. I had an extremely howly, squirmy, red-faced baby in my arms in the Luca Room.

Meanwhile in the kitchen, Elijah decided at that very moment that he hated this favorite food, Mexican rice. So he was screaming at the top of his lungs and banging his feet against his highchair, making a noise that would impress a jackhammer.

Grover sat at the end of the Luca bed, starting at me with a look that said, “No, in fact, I do not forgive you.”

Suddenly, Diana entered the room with a freshly opened beer. Probably the most desired beer in the history of hops and barley.

Unfortunately, both of my arms were busy with trying to feed Baby Banshee. Diana tipped the beer into my mouth. So it was Mommy feeding Daddy, Daddy feeding baby. Yeah, we’re not going to win any Parent Of The Year Awards with that maneuver. But I love her.

p.s. Despite being the most beautiful woman in the world, she doesn’t want her photo on the blog right now. So please enjoy this photo of my in my Rex Grossman jersey Christmas present. And my underpants. That’s about five jokes right there.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

We Should’ve Named Him “Marty.”

Christmas was great. And by “great,” I mean there were no blog-worthy disasters. Elijah went sufficiently bonkers. Di’s family came by and sufficiently praised my boeuf bourguignon. And we learned that Luca is sufficiently farty.

For those of you who are about to give birth (Patrick, Tom), around the 4th-6thth week, babies are at their most gassy. Whereas Eli’s version of gassy was to projectile vomit on my dress shirts, Luca’s form of gas is way more hilarious.

It’s like living with a one man Dixieland Jazz band 24 hours a day. Immediately after eating, he begins with the “Saints Go Marching In” in his diaper. Now, you can imagine how this delights me. Diana, not so much.

Although sometimes it really looks like it hurts. He gets red faced and scrunches up and then, wait for it…wait for it, “TOOT!” It seems as though he needs to mentally get his spleen out of the way before he can really let loose.

This all culminates in his 9-10:15 “witching hour.” If only all of us could decide that we were going to be jerks at the exact same time every day. But it seems as though he gets his baby daily calendar out and says, “Ok. Eat. Sleep. Toot. And then howl from exactly 9-10:15pm.”

So after Diana and I have had our wine and have watched enough HGTV to make me want to drive nails into my skull, I’ll scoop up Luca at 9pm on the dot and sit in his darkened room on the rocking chair and let him go nuts. And it’s not like he rattles the windows. He just squirms, grunts, cries out and toots in no particular order.

And then at 10:15, on the dot, he will get into a ball, let out one hellacious howl, followed by a day’s worth of toot and then it’s like a switch turns off. He immediately falls into the deepest sleep and doesn’t wake up for 4 hours.

So yeah. I’ll take my grouch baby in one and a half hours per day increments, thank you very much.

p.s. This is Diana’s sister, Peggy playing the one man Dixieland Jazz Band.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Jelly Beans and Dinosaur Screams

Merry Christmas everyone! I’ll report on anything interesting tomorrow. But for now, here is our Christmas Eve story.

Elijah and I went to the expensive grocery store to get stuff for boeuf bourguignon and to get out of the house while Diana dealt with a surprisingly fussy Luca.

As we were walking through the bulk food aisle, a very nice elderly French woman stopped us. I resisted the urge to announce, “We’re making boef bourguignon! Like you people!” She was filling up a plastic bag with jellybeans and offered Eli a couple.

Eli realized that very moment he lurved jellybeans. He repeatedly asked the Frenchy, “More? Jellybeans?” She was nice about it, but finally said, “I auf to saf some for my granddaughter.” We bid her farewell and cruised on. However, in every aisle we walked down, there was the elderly French woman. “More? Jellybeans?” I’d attempt to go what I thought was her opposite direction and there she was, attempting not to make eye contact with Eli. “More? Jellybeans?”

I had an epiphany. We were set to attend Christmas Eve Mass with the Steve Hamanns. He and I looked at it like a suicide mission. We knew the outcome. Kids under 5 in church? Disaster. But tradition is tradition. You have to sit in church before you get presents. That’s the way we did it when I was a kid, and by gum, that’s how we’re doing it. I figured I could bribe Elijah into sitting quietly during church – with jellybeans. Yeah, I know. Wrong holiday. But I was still playing in the Catholic treats, so I think it was ok.

Diana shrewdly announced that Luca was too fussy to go to church, so she would volunteer to make appetizers for afterwards. I wished I had though of that.

I laid down the rules as we entered St. Nicks. “Ok. If you’re quiet and sit still, you get…” Then I held out the box of jellybeans. Eli’s eyes lit up. We managed to get to the Hamann pew when it started. “More? Jellybeans?” As the organ started, I began feeding him jellybeans one by one. He sat there like an angel as the kids dressed as angels slumped by. I thought, “You’ve done it again, Hamann.”

Right about the time we realized this was a Spanish language mass, Eli hit the threshold of jellybean sugar in his blood. He began vibrating and buzzing and took on the irritating qualities of that one guy who snorts coke at your party. He began running headlong into the heaters, making a loud “bang!” He also announced his desire to speak with the priest. “I want to talk to the man!” He also decided at that moment to become potty trained. “I want to go pee pee in the pottyyyyyyy!”

Luckliy, Finn and Rory were engaged in battle with Steve and Pam, so Steve gave me the finger across the throat gesture and we high tailed it out of there.

Once at home, Pam, Diana and I began chugging Champaign and we let the kids loose on the presents. Star wars stuff. Art stuff. Books. I made a game decision to let Eli open one of his official Christmas day presents. The Dinosaur. The Dinosaur is actually a Matchbox car thing that really doesn’t do anything except look like a dinosaur with a couple ramps. Diana wanted me to return it because it was so lame.

But what she didn’t know is dinusaur+car=awesome. Finn and Eli began a feverous battle for it. Pushing. Crying. Yanking. Finn announced loudly that if he did not receive one from Santa the next morning there would be severe consequences.

Which was their cue to leave. Eli immediately forgot about The Dinosaur and went immediately to sleep.

Diana and I sat on our bed and listened to Luca scream and I thought, “This was the greatest Christmas Eve ever.” And I meant it.

p.s. Power To The Babies!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Look Me In The Eye

The other day, I was rocking Luca in his room during the fifteen minutes a day he’s in a bad mood. He was concentrating out into space and I wondered, “How far can this kid see?”

I was going to ask Diana, but she was engaged in imitating an obscure Pixar movie character to the delight of Elijah. I forgot about my eyesight question and fell madly in love with her all over again.

Today, I was “working from home,” which means keeping my phone vaguely within 100 yards in case there was an advertising emergency. The Chicagoland weather was crappy crappy crappy, so Diana asked me to take Luca to his one month check up.

After checking height, weight, noggin size, etc (he’s 50th percentile across the board, unlike Eli, otherwise known as Andre the Giant), the doctor asked me if I had any questions. Resisting the urge to ask about his ear hair or what percentile he is, penis-wise, I asked about his eyesight.

“Oh, he can see perfectly from short distances. So right now he can see your face.” I looked at him on the white crinkly paper and said, “Pretty handsome, aren’t I?”

She washed her hands and said, “The nurse will be in shortly for his one month shot.”

Come again? Shot? No, no no. I’m not the shot guy. I’m the jokey guy.

But the nurse came in and told me to hold Luca. As the shot was administered, he looked me right in the eye and could see me perfectly. Here’s a rundown of his expressions:

1. Hey, I know that guy. He’s the one with the beard.
2. That feels cold.
3. That feels like a giant needle being thrust into my leg.
4. You, sir, are a son of a bitch.

And then he proceeded to cry hysterically. Heaving, hiccupping, elephant tears. The works. All they while, looking at me with perfect eyesight.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Baby Straight Jacket and The Two Stooges

Luca has been putting in some serious sleep at night. 4 hours is a ton for a 3 ½ week old. We’re not ready to proclaim him Best Baby In The World just yet, but he’s in the running.

But even though he’s taking it easy on us, Diana still doesn’t get a full night’s sleep during the week. So we’ve decided that I’ll take the overnight shift on Saturday nights. While I am far less neurotic than I was with Elijah, I still like to take certain precautions.

Namely, the Baby Straight Jacket. Some people refer to it as “Swaddling” or the “Baby Burrito.” I’m not a big fan of calling it Baby Burrito. Yeah, inside is warm and farty, but it seems like an insult to my son to dress him in something that college students eat to prevent hangovers. I prefer the even less flattering reference to my son being a lunatic, The Baby Straight Jacket.

For you non-parents, The Baby Straight Jacket is basically wrapping a baby tightly in a blanket, pinning their arms against their body. This is to prevent them from involuntarily punching themselves in the face while they sleep. Oddly, it’s comforting to the babies not to punch themselves in the face.

We’ve found that Luca actually prefers to keep one arm out of the Straight Jacket. He holds his arm over his head, fist clenched, giving him a look of the cross between Superman and a member of The Black Panthers.

We also prefer to Baby Straight Jacket him in stolen hospital blankets. There is just something about hospital blankets. They’re the right size and right material for perfect Straight Jackets. No kid can escape. I don’t care if you are baby Houdini. So yes, I’ll admit it. So yes, a few blankets accidentally fell into my backpack. And by “a few,” I mean “20.” I’m not proud of it. But we’ve tried every other material known to man and none compare to hospital-grade Straight Jackets. Our pediatrician busted us with the ill-begotten blankets at our first check up. She just laughed, so I’m going to take that as permission.

Other than that, I just give him the “Moe” a few times a night. I do have a thing about airway blockage. SIDS is no joke and I wake up panicked every once and a while, wondering if Luca’s mouth and nose have been covered up in his sleep. Even if he had control of his arms, he’s in a Baby Straight Jacket. So at least once a night, I’ll creep over to his co-sleeper and feel around to make sure his nostrils are free. Since I do this in the pitch darkness, I usually end up accidentally yanking up on his nose holes with my two fingers. Remember that move Moe from The Three Stooges did? Usually to lead Larry or Curly around? I end up doing that.

I think Luca prefers when his mom does the overnight shift.

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Good old Elijah. I’ll give it to him, he’s smart. Very smart. Too smart?

As you recall, he’s experimenting with ways to pull attention away from Luca. From the “I love you, man” to the tantrum. Well, he’s stumbled onto something pretty genius: Peril.

When Diana sits down to breast-feed Luca, she has to be fairly stationary. There is a fair amount of gear, like her Breast Friend thing and her towels and her water and, oh yes, a three-week-old baby. So once the event starts, she has to sit until Luca is satiated. So if is definitely hard to jump up and fetch milk or apples or Curious George cartoons.

So when Diana hunkers down, Elijah will instantly attempt to get himself into some kind of life threatening situation. He’ll climb up onto, and get stuck in, Luca’s crib, or he’ll climb onto an unstable stool in the kitchen. Or he’ll play with a litter of rabid coyotes or the bear traps we keep in the den.

And then he’ll shout, “Mommy! I need heeeeelp!”

At which point, in order to keep from having to rush to the hospital, Diana will have to extract herself from the Breast Feeding Station and find the fire extinguisher or our anti-zombie spray. Which involves removing Luca from her, um, milky areas. Which results in the rare, but loud, screaming from boy #2.

Each night when I but Eli to bed, I have my nightly talk.

“Hey buddy. Mommy needs your help with Luca. He’s just a little baby and needs a lot of attention. So can you try to be good tomorrow and not get into trouble when Mommy is feeding Luca? Like not playing with the nuclear weapons we have under the sink?”


For better or for worse, Elijah hasn’t really figured out the concept of lying yet. He delightfully admits to all his wrongdoing.

“Elijah, did you hit Grover?”

“Yes! And I kicked him. And I kicked Mommy!”

We’ll see if this honesty lasts. I somehow doubt it.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Yesterday morning was the official end of my paternity leave. And when I left Diana, she had that glassy eyed look of a mommy who just pulled an all nighter with a three week old. Add to that a two year old who was still deciding whether he wanted to be Elijah or Hajile, and we had the potential for a disastrous first day back.

Luckily, December is slow for sports cars, so I scrambled out of the office and swooped home to the rescue.

On the El, I had images of our house half collapsed, half on fire. I imagined Diana hiding in the basement, shivering, while Luca rode Grover through the house like Sea Biscuit. I saw Eli, dressed in leafs and holding a conk shell, standing atop our TV demanding his 12th consecutive hour of Curious George cartoons.

I burst through the front door and shouted, “Attention! Daddy’s here! Everything is going to be ok!”

I ran into the kitchen and found the following scene:

Luca was fast asleep in his bouncy chair. Elijah was happily finished with his hunger strike and shoving fistfuls of pears into his mouth. Diana was bright-eyed, fully clothed and chatting on the phone. She was also juggling knives with her feet and playing the banjo one-handed. Okay, that last part is an exaggeration, but they were all doing fantastic.

Eli shouted, “Hey Mommy! I love you.”

Okay, I’ll admit it. I felt a little disappointed.

I asked Di if I could do anything.

“I don’t think so. We’re cool. Oh, Grover could use a walk.”

I led Grover out the back door. “At least you’d be a disaster without me,” I said. He urinated in reply.

p.s. Today’s photo is the only Luca shot I have on my phone. Which was shot at an angle that makes him look like an alien. When I show co-workers my beautiful son, they say, “Oh…he’s…cute-ish.”

I need a new shot.

Monday, December 14, 2009

It’s Alive!

Guess who finally woke up? Yep. Luca decided sleeping 22 hours a day wasn’t for him. Fortunately, he didn’t wake up very angry. He doesn’t really cry that much. Unless you put him down.

Luca wants to be held by his mommy. All the time. If you set him down while he’s asleep and he wakes up not in her arms, watch out. It sounds like stepping on a cat’s tail. With cement shoes.

I can understand. Look at his alternatives.

A chair that swings so hard he is constantly in danger of being pitched across the living room and into our faux fireplace.

A bouncy seat with a demented, dangling plastic lion and his equally evil plastic elephant. I imagine he believes they speak to him. “Sure. Go ahead. Fall asleep, Luca. I hope you don’t mind us biting your toes while you rest…”

And then there’s the floor. I can’t imagine why he doesn’t want to lay on the floor. A surface covered with Grover leavings and 2 ½ years of Elijah goo. Maybe he wouldn’t fuss so much if we gave him a HAZMAT suit.

So, yes. Along with trying to get Eli to eat (his latest attempt at attention getting is a hunger strike), Diana has to cart around Luca. She has taken to wearing her “Breast Friend” tutu all the time. It has a little ledge she can plop Luca. He just lays there observing all he rules like a miniature Cleopatra.

My paternity leave ended and I’m back at work. Last night, Luca sensed this and decided he would institute a no sleep rule for Sunday nights. Again, he didn’t really howl. He just scratched around and “Meh-ed” all night. Diana, bless her, attempted to let me sleep and deal with the night owl.

This morning while I was getting Eli his soon to be uneaten breakfast, I noticed Diana is starting to get that 1,000 yard stare Vietnam vets got when they had to go back into country.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Eli Vs. Sweet Potatoes

irst, a Luca update. He’s awesome. He’s so mellow and sleepy, the other night at 4am I actually Googled “Can a baby sleep too much?” The answer is no. So we’re going to let him sleep until he decides to hate us. Eighteen years seems about right.

One of the greatest things about having a baby is the food. I don’t know who created the tradition of bringing food over to new parents, but our friends and family won’t be satisfied until Diana and I are 300 pounds.

Wednesday night, out of the blue, our super nice neighbor across the street who we have said fourteen words to in our 3 years at the house, showed up with a full meal. She offered to watch Luca while we ate, but we refused. Not out of politeness. We were afraid of what she brought. Was it Hamster Thermidor? Was it Toe Nails Three Ways? So after some Luca holding (he didn’t make a peep), she scooted out the door and we nervously peered under the aluminum foil.

Chicken and stuffing and mashed sweet potatoes. And to top it off, chocolate chip cupcakes. Awesome. We wolfed it down like savages. After we stopped panting, we noticed Elijah hadn’t touched his meal. Since he hadn’t also taken a nap, we knew we were in for trouble.

“I want a cupcake.”

Hmm. Interesting. Eli hates sweets. And we told him so. “You hate sweets.”

“I want a cupcake.”

The light bulb went off. It was time to introduce him to the concept of food compromise. Parents and kids have been trading bites for sweets since the introduction of Hamster Thermidor.

“Eat a bite of sweet potato and you can have a cupcake.”

Thus began a ridiculous fight that lasted waaaay longer than necessary. Eli shouted “No! I want a cupcake” about a thousand times. We chased him around with a plastic spoon filled with coagulated sweet potato repeating, “Just one bite…just one bite..then cupcake.”

Remember, Eli hates sweets. So if we had “won,” and he had indeed eaten the spoonful of sweet potato, he would’ve barfed from the cupcake.

So Eli ended up in hysterics and going to bed without a real dinner, and the last thing he said was, “I want to eat sweet potato.”

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Pee Poo Pee

Last evening, I attempted to give Diana one half of an hour of peace without any men. This was no small feat. So I created the following game.

I positioned Elijah on our bed. Next, I put Luca in a bouncy seat about two and a half feet away from the bed. Finally, I put Grover in Eli’s room across the hall. And here is a typical round.

Step one. Smash Eli in the face with a pillow. Hard enough that he falls on the bed.

Step two. Run across the room, stopping at Luca’s bouncy seat and gently kick it to get it rocking.

Step three. Grab a rotten dog toy and toss it down the stairs. Grover crashes down after it.

Step four. Run back to the bed, where Eli has recovered and start round 2.

This created a perpetual motion machine of laughing, falling and bouncing that remarkably kept all three, well all four, Hamann men occupied long enough for Diana to get caught up on her phone calls and emails.

About halfway through, I said to Eli, “This is fun!”

He responded, “Yeah!”

I said, “What should we call this game?”

“Pee poo pee!”

Of course. I am in the process of lining up a professional Pee Poo Pee league. But it’s hard to round up enough men, babies, two year olds and dogs. So far, all I have is Barry Bonds and Rin Tin Tin.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Stare Hard

The blog serves many purposes. For instance, evidence for later in life “Uh, no you cannot borrow the car. You peed on me in 2009.”

But it also gives us a very inaccurate calendar of when we can expect things to happen with Luca. For instance, according to Elijah, we’re at the stage where he finally woke up. And woke up angry. Very angry. So it is with more than a little trepidation that we expect Luca to realize he hates being outside the womb any minute.

But here’s the thing. He’s awake a lot right now. His eyes are open and he’s alert. But he doesn’t cry. He just calmly stares. And stares. And stares.

It’s more than a little disconcerting. Mostly because he has really dark eyeballs. He looks a little like those kids from the movie “Village of the Damned.” The one with the glowing eyed mind control children. Have you ever seen that movie? Me neither.

Sometimes, when he’s half awake, he stares at you with one eye open and the other eye tightly closed. Which makes him more of a mind control Popeye. “Givesk me some spinach!”

The only bummer is Luca has his days and nights mixed up. So he spends his nights wide awake. And staring. He doesn’t really cry. He just “meh’s.” He’ll spend hours and hours just going, “Meh….meh…meh…”

Aaand I just took a 45 minute break from writing. Luca was crying and wouldn’t allow me to put him down. So the blog also serves as on official jinxer.

p.s. Luca had his 1st bath. Hated it!

p.s.s. Luca already peed on me.

Monday, December 7, 2009

I Love You Man

Before I left for Paternity leave, work lunch conversation turned to sibling rivalry. It seems as though every person at my table had been almost murdered by their older brother or sister when they were born. There were attempted smotherings. There were attempted drownings. I think one kid pushed his brother out of an airplane.

So I was a wee bit concerned about Elijah’s mental state when Luca came home. Let’s face it. Eli received 110% of our attention for 2 ½ years. We don’t do board games. We don’t watch “Mad Men.” We don’t paint. Our hobby was adoring our first born. I had visions of Eli constructing a crude guillotine in our basement.

I’ve said it before, Eli is doing great at being knocked down to #2 on Billboard’s Top 100. But he still craves attention. Over the last week he’s been experimenting with different modes of acquiring our eyeballs.

Crying. Everything from faux injuries to not having his towel properly draped over his shoulders is an excuse for the water works. At minimum, he gets a hug and a kiss. But he’s a terrible actor, so when he’s really chewing the scenery we’ll let him complete his performance on his own.

Screaming Tantrum. He rarely uses this technique. Eli only breaks out the “Li’l Bastard” kit when he’s used all his other options. The only real bummer is he tends to use this technique when we’re at Target and I haven’t had my coffee. So then I break out my “World’s Worst Dad” kit and start yelling. I think this year’s Christmas Card is a photo of my and Eli playing tug of war with a plastic bunny rabbit.

I Love You Man. Now this, this is the best. It goes as follows. I’ll be cooking or trying to climb on top of the massive pile of garbage inhabiting our living room when Eli will say, “Hey Daddy. Hey Daddy. Hey Daddy.”

I’ll respond as all dads in the world do, “Yo! Talk to me, Goose.”

“I love you.”

At which point the heavens open, the choir starts in and they drag that big harp into our house. I immediately hit “Toys R Us” on speed dial and say, “Send me over one of everything.”

And the funny thing is, I fall for it every time. You’d think after the 100th “Hey Daddy. Hey Daddy” I’d know what was coming next. But I’m always knocked out when he says it.

p.s. Those things on his ears are from Diana’s breast pump. Don’t tell him.

p.s.s. A quick Luca thing. He poops like clockwork when you feed him. You know you are just about done with the bottle when you hear the telltale “pop.” He poops with such ferocity that he surprises himself and his arms flail. Pop!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Belly Button 2

This morning, we realized Luca’s little belly button thing fell off.

Whereas with boy #1, we would’ve taken pictures of the brown chunk and bronzed the brown chunk and written a folk song about the brown chunk. Instead, we just chucked brown chunk #2 into the trash.

Baby 2 Syndrome.

I’m going to fight baby 2 Syndrome and attempt to obsess over the tiny details as much as possible like I did with a certain future neurotic. But it’s hard. I’m sure Columbus had a hard time getting excited about the new world on trip #2.

“Ohh, spices and indigenous people I can exploit. Whoopee.”

But Luca is his own man. That ear hair thing, for example. And, I am noticing he is starting to lose that black hair of his. So instead of looking like George Bush, like Elijah, he’s starting to look a lot like character actor, Stanley Tucci.

He also is much better on the whole breast feeding front. Eli never really got the hang of it. To which my dad said, “He must be a leg man.” But Luca can’t go fifteen minutes without requesting his favorite place on earth, the circular breast feeding pillow with the greatest product name in the world, “The Breast Friend.” Elijah refers to it as the tutu and wears it for he four minutes per day Diana doesn’t have it on.

We’ve had to enact a Rick friend ban on the house because it constantly looks like a 14-year old’s dream come true in our living room with all the exposed Diana parts.

Also, Luca’s either a lot more mellow or we are. It’s partly because we don’t treat him like he was made out of snowflakes like we did with Eli.

But he hasn’t officially woken up yet, so I’m still holding out hope for a bottle tossed across the kitchen episode again.

But I did manage to shout at Elijah in Target this morning, “Eli! Stop screaming! Daddy has to talk on the phone to uncle Steve about Star Wars!”

Thursday, December 3, 2009


The one on one parenting (I’m not using “Man To Man” anymore because it’s probably copyrighted and I can’t afford to get sued) is working out great. For me. For one, I get to spend all day every day with the greatest two and a half year old in the world. For two, the greatest two and a half year old in the word sleeps twelve hours every night.

So when I get emails saying, “Oh man. I feel for you. It must be hard.” I think, “Yeah. I think I’m getting bed sores.”

That leaves Diana and Luca to duke it out every night downstairs in the Luca Suite. I’m not sure I’ve mentioned it, but for the first month or two we’re sleeping in separate rooms. Diana, downstairs with easier access to the bathroom and baby gear and me upstairs with easier access to our comfortable bed.

Fortunately, Luca’s still in his sleepy stage, so he mostly chirps when he’s hungry instead of screams. But he’s only 8 days old. So he needs to eat every 2 hours.

Diana has been doing great, but the lack of sleep is starting to wear on her. So last night, she suggested we swap duties. She’d take Elijah (sleep) and I’d take Luca.

I scrambled. “Well…well you have to feed him breast milk. I don’t have breast milk.”

“I pumped. You have enough for the night.”

“Well…well Eli specifically asked for me.”

(To Eli) “Do you want mommy or daddy to wake up with you tomorrow?”


Traitor. I actually wasn’t too bummed out about it. I don’t think I’ve been having the true infant experience as of yet. The prospect of a sleepless night somehow felt authentic.

At 11pm, I set out the bottles and pacifiers and wipes and TV remote (I was planning on catching up on the in-trouble Obama administration as reported by “The Daily Show.” Then I laid down in the Luca Suite.

I immediately started to write today’s blog in my head. “Sharing a room with Luca is like trying to sleep with a hamster…”

But then I heard crying from upstairs. Really hard crying. I ran upstairs and saw Diana comforting Eli. And then the smell hit me. Puke.

Apparently, when last night’s recipe called for “medium rare steak,” I misread it as “medium rancid steak.” While Diana and my wine-lined stomachs could handle it, Eli got a case of the barfs.

So every two hours when I woke up to feed a contented, barely meowing Luca, I could hear Eli upstairs working out the devil. And poor Diana comforting him. She got less sleep than I did.

We’re going to try it again tonight in the vain hope Diana will get an actual night sleep. Although I assume Eli will come down with 24 hour Chicken Pox.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


Diana is lovely. Ask anyone who still harbors a crush on her from her Phish tour days. She just has good genetics. So image her disappointment at birthing boy #1 who, while beautiful beyond belief, has a full head of blonde hair and bright blue eyes. People on the street still think she’s Elijah’s nanny.

I think she secretly hoped this time Luca would at least have a passing resemblance. But if you look at almost every child born to a Hamann in the last 100 years, her odds are stacked blondly and blue eyedly against her.

The heavens smiled on her because boy #2 is a raven haired beauty like his mommy. And while he has the newborn blue eyes, they do look mighty dark.

But, unfortunately for Luca, he inherited something terrible from me.

Ear hair.

His ears are covered in thick, black fur. In fact, his ears look more like Grover’s than anyone else in the family. But I highly doubt Grover had anything to do with Luca. Let’s face it. Given Grover’s obsession with me, I’m thinking he bats for the other team.

And if you look closely, you’ll see he doesn’t exactly have eyebrows. It’s as if the good Lord got a little mixed up on where the eyebrows go and accidentally attached them to Luca’s Dumbos.

Our doctor says that the ears will lose their fur soon. But in case it doesn’t, I’ve been researching baby ear waxing. I couldn’t find anything on Google. But they did recommend a couple great places to get his ears pierced.

Well, it’s been seven days and I’ve written the first blog that will make Luca hate my guts when he reads it later in life. I’m a little behind schedule.