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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Summer is Finally Here

May has been a busy month, and it still isn't winding down! My parents were here last weekend, then headed up to the mountains for the week, and will be back for Memorial Day weekend. Their visit went well and they really seemed to enjoy the boys and all the silly things they do. Two weekends ago was our neighborhood block party, which was mostly work for me. Nick was out of town for work, so watching the boys alone at the party was a little nerve-wracking! They had a petting zoo, jumpy castle, train rides, a DJ, and lots of food. Many things for little boys to get into. Then last weekend we had a one year birthday party for a neighbor, and like all one-year-old parties around here, it quite the soiree. This Sunday is yet another party in the park that neighbors are hosting, a three year old birthday party, and keeping my parents occupied. Our neighborhood swimming pool opens up too, so it could be a busy weekend. Maybe June will be a little less crazy.

Nick has someone coming tomorrow to start the boys on piano lessons. I took lessons for a couple years, but the saxophone was my specialty, and I played all the way up to college in different bands. But I'm curious to see what can be taught to two-year-olds. So far, they have pounding on the keyboard down quite well! We also have a neighborhood soccer class that takes kids from 18 months, so we may try that too. Dylan definitely seems more interested in kicking a soccer ball and playing catch, but we may let them both try it to see if they like it.

No more Modern Family, Brothers and Sisters, or Desperate Housewives for a while. I guess we're supposed to be outside at the playground in the evening this time of year and not watching television. True Blood starts up again next month and Nick got me hooked on that one. I think we'll have to DVR True Blood and watch it after the boys go to sleep. They're getting to that age where we're going to have to figure out how to use the parental controls and block channels. We get every channel satellite TV offers, so I'm sure something will need to be blocked eventually.

Also on my agenda is potty training, at least for Reid. I really have no clue what to do here, and from what I've heard, no one else does either. You just try different things and see what works. But Reid has started grabbing his diaper and saying "yuk", and then took off his diaper twice in the past week to pee on the floor. Although it just seems wrong to me, at the advice of neighbors, we've shown them "how to pee in the potty" a few times. I suppose this makes sense. How else would they know how to go? We got a potty that hooks onto the regular toilet with a step for them to get up. Reid peed in the toilet after lunch today and got lots of praise and a sticker. Dylan seemed baffled by what was going on and kept going back to look in the toilet. I've heard that with twins, one will become potty trained and then the other one usually follows, not wanting to be left out. I've tried Dylan on the toilet and he just cries, as if something horrible were happening to him. I've dreaded potty training since they were born, but I suppose my motivation is that I'm spending at least $75 a month on diapers. This should be interesting.

Friday, May 14, 2010

This is my favorite picture from the photo shoot I did with the boys three weeks ago. Since Nick turned 40 a few days after the boys' birthday, I hired a photographer and did a photo shoot as a present for him. I bought a nice frame that's actually many connected frames and put all my favorites in it to create a nice piece of artwork that's now in the entry hall. Nick seemed to really like it and appreciate all the work that went into it. The boys' birthday was exhausting, but they had fun. Plus, after they blew out their candles, I surprised Nick with his 40th cake. I don't think he was expecting that, but I figured there was no sense in inviting 60 people back a few days later.

I had a great interview with four people for a job, but in the end, no job. The recruiter told me that two of the interviewers wanted to hire me, but the other two thought my "energy level wasn't quite where they wanted it to be". Personally, I think that was a BS excuse. I was interviewed by two men and two women, and felt like I connected with the women and one of the men. The other man had the energy level of a doorknob, and the recruiter said the other man was one of the two who wanted to hire me. I have a feeling I was vetoed by the women for some other reason. Maybe they didn't want a man in the position? One of the women stressed that the company was very "family oriented". For a gay father, that can mean more than one thing. On the surface, it sounds great for someone like me who is family oriented. But then that can also be code for "anti-gay", so maybe it was best that I didn't get the job. I doubt they thought I was gay since I brought up having children. One of the men asked what I'd been doing during unemployment, so I mentioned staying at home with the boys and my volunteer work. He seemed impressed that I was home with the boys, but asked if my "wife was working". I just responded "yes". So what should I have said? Times are tough, and putting a gay stamp on my forehead probably wouldn't have helped any. Coming out in the workplace is always a difficult process since your livelihood depends on you job. I was semi-outed in my last job after the boys were born, and had no issues with anyone. I'd prefer to work somewhere gay friendly, but somehow I always seem to end up working with mostly conservative old people! It's just difficult to keep your personal life personal when you have kids.

Hopefully I'll get an unemployment extension the end of this month as I keep looking. I'm on my first extension right now, but they don't explain how the extensions work or how long you really have. It's been almost a year since I was laid off, so I'm a bit worried at this point. One year, 140 applications, two in-person interviews, and two phone interviews. Very discouraging!