Little Dude Turns Two!

Aaapy Bertday!

Aaapy Bertday!

El Duderino pequeno es dos!

Aaapy bertday!

A few notes:

  • Boring to 99% of the population? Possibly. But he’s my Boy! I can’t think of a better way to spend 1:30 of my day.
  • You’ll have to suffer through some not-so-great singing, but the reaction of a two year old figuring out the birthday traditions is pretty classic.
  • I’m biased, but his “Aaapy bertday!” is pretty darn adorable.
  • I never expected him to be so excited about his birthday at two, but he dug it big time.
  • You won’t see the balance bike that we got him because his feet can’t touch the ground. It’s the thought that counts. Save it for next year! 🙂
  • Last but not least, four years of Spanish and all I can muster is misspelled Spanglish. Although, I still believe that Spanglish saved our lives on the honeymoon in Costa Rica. On the other hand, Mrs. Dude thinks I just told a woman her baby looked like a fish. We may both be right.


Here’s to Our Version of Danny & Annie

June is a busy month around the Dude casa. School’s out, so that’s adds to the crazy. There are also a few special days for us to celebrate. A bunch of family birthdays…Lady in the Shoe has like 25 kids. Close to home, we have the Princess and Little Dude celebrating their big day only five days apart…great for duel bday parties!

But beyond the cake and candles, me and the Mrs. share our anniversary early in the month. We celebrated with a great dinner at a local restaurant, but I let time slip by without a post to commemorate the day.

I had a video saved to share, but I filed it away where I couldn’t find, so here we are three weeks late after I stumbled upon it. I considered saving it for next year, but clearly my filing system needs some improvement. So I figured I’d share now. Better late than never.

Happy belated anniversary Mrs. Dude. Here’s to our version of Danny & Annie…

Week 52: Walking, Throwing, Kicking, Oh My!

6.19.11 - Birthday Boy

6.19.11 - Birthday Boy

How many weeks are in a year? Ding, ding, ding…52. Little Dude is officially a one year old.

He picked a great day to burst on the scene. Every few years we’ll get to celebrate Father’s Day and his birthday. And this was one of the lucky years. A nice bonus.

Every stage makes me wish I could freeze time so he’d stop growing. Then I experience the next stage and realize it’s just as good.

The first year flew by, and we’re looking forward to what year numero dos has in store.

One year is a big milestone, and Little Dude celebrated in style by becoming a full-time walker on the big day. He has been practicing little by little over the past couple weeks, but Sunday was the day he committed to it.

And not just walking. The Boy is throwing like a champ…and kicking! For real. Kicking. A ball!

Brought a tear to the Dude’s eye to see some soccer coming out of him. I’m hoping we can sign his first contract by his second bday.

Here’s a highlight reel of the birthday weekend. What better way to celebrated than highlights of a one year old walking and a classic Footloose song?

Although, I’ll warn you that it may drag on a bit for anyone that is not his Mom and Dad…but it’s fun for us to see ALL of the first steps. However, if you find that your bored, skip ahead to the 2:50 mark. Soccer skills on a one year old are pretty entertaining.

Happy birthday Little Dude. We love you.

I Totally Redeemed Myself

Little Dude - Brooke Mayo

Little Dude - Brooke Mayo

An interesting Dude Family fact:  The Dude’s Mom, Dad, and Grandma (Mom’s Mom) all share the same birthday.  Today.


Happy Birthday Mom, Dad, & Gram!

As a birthday gift (kind of), here’s a picture of your grand-baby taken by a rad photographer, Brooke Mayo.

My dad graduated with a master’s degree in math.  Old school math degree too.  They only had a calculator in the library that they all shared to break down ridiculous master’s degree math problems.  Nuts.  Clearly the man must know some math.

So I asked today what are the odds of all the same b-days.  Seems like he should be able to rattle this fact off.  He’s known Mama Dukes and Gram from like forty years.  Wouldn’t you think that crazy math mind would have to know the answer to this?

All I got in return was:   “If there are 20 people in a room the odds that 2 have the same birthday is over 50%.”


Did he just give me his math homework?  My head hurt trying to figure it out, so I left it alone.

Anyway, of course I got the cards in the mail on time, and I gave each a birthday message today, but I totally redeemed myself on a Skype message with my Dad.

Dude: Happy b-day old man.  🙂 [10:40:11 AM]

Dude’s Padre: Thank you.  Mom and I will step out for a nice dinner at Bonefish Grille tonight.

Do you think you know how old mom and I are? [10:40:35 AM]

Dude: How old?  Hmmm.  I’ve been blessed with a memory like your’s (Dude’s Padre can’t recall where he was an hour ago.), so I’m not sure, but I’ll take a stab.

Mom = 61

Dad = 64

Bingo? [10:48:17 AM]

Dude’s Padre: right on Bucko. [10:48:33 AM]

It’s kind of funny that my Dad and I Skype like we’re stuck in the 1950’s. “Old man?”  “Step out?”  “Bingo?”  “Bucko?”  Sounds like a Leave it to Beaver episode.

Anyway, did you see how I totally redeemed myself there?  There’s no way he thought I knew their age.  And neither did I.

But bingo, I pulled it out.  Nice work Dude.

Not sure how I knew that.

Sort of reminds me of…

The Joy of Swinging

The Princess has turned five, and at the same time reached an important life milestone; self-propelled swinging.

Five is huge.  Five is a major shift from little kid to medium sized kid, and along with the shift come some added responsibilities.  Five brings with it kindergarten.  School bus, cafeteria lunch, a big school, and a big playground.

Big playgrounds have big swings, and kindergarteners know how to swing (or at least that’s what I tell the Princess).  The Princess loves to swing.  She could spend days gliding back and forth, but she still needs to be pushed.

To avoid any further discussions of a hideous swing set being added to the Dude’s righteous landscaping, the Dude crafted a masterful plan to help the Princess and ring in the five year old birthday; a swing hooked to the underside of the deck/house.  The swing is the most popular part of the swing set anyway…it’s called a SWING set for good reason.

So, to ring in the festivities, the Dude surprised the Princess with a groovy new green swing with bright yellow rubber protecting the chain link running from swing to house.  A beautiful swinging specimen.

Joy of Swinging

Joy of Swinging

And the Princess rejoiced at the sight, but I’m not sure any of us were prepared for the true joy such a simple gift could bring.

Of course the Dude didn’t buy all of the right parts, but of course the Dude made due with the provided parts and some magic parts from the garage, and the swing was eventually hung with care…about an hour after a fifteen minute project began.  Typical Dude.  But, the end result is just right, and the Princess agrees wholeheartedly.

Within seconds of being hung, the swing was swinging and the joy was growing like the Grinch’s heart at Christmas.  After one or two introductory pushes, something clicked and self-propelled swinging began.  The Princess had learned how to pump her legs to swing.  A major hurdle overcome, and new life long skill was cemented into place.

The Princess was immediately in love with her new skill.  As the Dude tended the garden, the Princess excitedly talked as only a five year old girl can, quickly leaping from one random thought to another.  At one point I heard “Yippee!” yelled repeatedly at least 30 times; I say at least because that’s where I lost count.  The Yippee was followed by the My Little Pony theme song sung at top volume, which of course led to the proclamation, “I’m swinging…with my eyes closed…and singing!”

The singing eventually led to some Dude and Princess discussions (always interesting), and the Dude realized the swing was a great gift for both of them.  The Dude sidestepped the swing set in the backyard debates, helped the Princess with one of life’s simple pleasures, and created a great forum for Dude and Princess discussions.  The Dude gardening and the Princess swinging, delving into many of life’s mysteries…usually profoundly explained to the Dude by the Princess.

It was a struggle to pull her off the swing as the stars began to peek through the dusk sky, and the first words uttered the following morning were “can I go outside to swing.”

So begins the big summer of the Princess and the development of life skills all kindergarteners know (at least that’s what I tell her).  Next on the list:  swimming, tying shoes, and riding with no training wheels.  Watch out kindergarten.