Friday, December 29, 2017

Have I mentioned how cute my kids are?

Not to mention my whole family.

Thanks to Nikki Womac, OLG mom, photographer and all around awesome person.  She donated a photo session to the school auction which Kim and I purchased.  She's one of those great photogs that take candid photos while you live your life.  Unfortunately, Kim and I are terrible and awkward models.  At least our kids are adorbs.  Take a look.





Sunday, December 24, 2017

Merry Christmas from the Pankows

Greetings!

The end of the year is approaching.  But, before we close, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!  I hope you get to relax and I hope you find some peace during this time.

I will (hopefully) get my annual end of year post up next week.  But, in the meantime, please enjoy this Pankow Christmas Jammies picture and this video of Opie giving baby kisses.



Friday, November 17, 2017

Look how cute my kids are.

No, really.  Look. 

First school photo for this dude.  Nailed it!

This one gave us a legit smile this year!  Lady killer, I tell you!

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Farewell my Quincy Pants

My dad once told me, our pets give us thousands of the happiest days of our lives...and one of the worst.  Today was one of the worst for me. Today, I said goodbye to Quincy Pants. 

Quincy was 13 years old.  If you knew him, or even follow my blog, you knew that he drew the short straw in life.  Rarely could that poor dog catch a break. 

He was allergic to human dander, so he was ALWAYS itchy.  Even after a routine of allergy shots and a lifetime of prednisone to ease his symptoms.  Then, he developed cataracts and after a few years was completely blind.  Then went his hearing.   

But, he was always still happy, smiley Quincy Pants.  He was the first to greet me at the door, bouncing all over the place and shaking that stump despite his old age and arthritis.  He was always there to snuggle with me during the most trying times of my life and just when I needed a pooch to pet.  He was always there.

Now he's not.  And, it hurts. 

You may wonder what happened?  Well, it all started after his surgery.  I look back and I wonder if I should have made this decision then.  The surgery was pretty traumatic for him.  He lost a step or two after that.  We could still enjoy snuggle time.  But, the giddiness was lost.  The "morning make outs" ended.  Those morning when I would just pet the heck out of him and he would love up every moment of it.  He didn't like that, anymore. 

He stopped going up to Desmond's room where his favorite bed in the world (the Ultimate Sack) was.  The half body shake I would get when I got home lessened to just the stump. 

Then, one day, he had what we thought might have been a seizure.  I wasn't there for it.  My in-laws saw it and described it.  He went to the vet and, hundreds of dollars of tests later, they had nothing.  Today, I kinda wonder if that was actually a stroke.

It was the move that really sent him into a rapid downward spiral.  Everything he knew was different.  He was losing his way around the old place, too.  But, now...everything was wrong for him.  We tried helping him explore.  We even set him up in his own corner of the house with his bed and the old couch for him to lay on.  Close to the action where he could do his thing (which is usually simply sleeping) while we did ours (cook dinner, feed the baby, whatever).  Then we would bring him to the living room and let him rest on the couch. 

But, these last days, he couldn't rest.  He couldn't sit still.  He would walk in circles, over and over and over.  He would walk in circles so much and so fast that he would get dizzy and fall over...then he would get up and continue to walk in circles.  We tried to put him in his favorite spots.  He would get up and, if we weren't right next to him, fall off the couch or the bed and then keep walking in circles.  He stopped eating and drinking.  Just circles. 

Today, I took him to the vet clinic...the one where my cousin Kelley works.  Kelley was there for us.  She did the procedure herself.  I was with him when he passed on, off to torment his sisters who went before him.

I miss him, terribly.  It's still the first day, but I keep thinking I hear him.  I know it will pass.  In the meantime, I will remember what a great little puppy pants he was for 13 years.  Thanks for thousands of happy days, Mr. Pants.


 

 




Thursday, October 19, 2017

This baby has a clear favorite person

Owen has picked a favorite person in the whole wide world.

It's not his mom.

It's not his dad.

Not Quincy or Grandma or Grandpa or any of his teachers.

It's his big bro.

Here's an example of how happy Desmond makes his little bro.


Baby giggles from Jason Pankow on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Farewell to our Junction Home

So...we've recently made a pretty big (HUGE) move in our lives.  We have purchased a new house! 

I will post pics of the new place soon (hopefully).  We are fully moved in.  With the exception of some remaining unpacked boxes, we are officially living at the new place.

And, with that, we are in the process of saying goodbye to our old home.  Our little Junction home in West Seattle.  It's very bittersweet.  While we weren't there long, it was our first home as a family.  Kim became a Pankow while we lived in this house.  Opie was born.  We made a ton of memories here. 

We moved into the house in September of 2014.  Kim and I were dating and had gotten engaged earlier that year.  Desmond was in Kindergarten.  Opie was a twinkle in our eyes.  It started out as a rental.  The lease on the place I was renting was coming up and I needed a new place.  Kim owned her own home, but moving in there wasn't really an option as it was far away from Desmond's school.  So, we started looking. 

Rentals in Seattle are not cheap.  Finding a nice place with room for 2 adults and one kid (not to mention a guest room for Grandmas), in a decent location, at a price we wanted was not easy.  We came really really close to renting one place with an AMAZING yard and a SPECTACULAR view of the Puget Sound.  We were one pen stroke away from signing a lease when the fact that it was only 2 bedroom (1 if you didn't count the room that didn't have a closet) and really really dinky made us wise up. 

Our home kinda fell into our lap.  Kim was talking to a friend of hers who had another friend who had a brother.  This brother owned a house.  He and his family lived in the house until his job required him to move to California.  Since then, they had been renting out their house.  The previous tenants had jumped ship and they were looking for new ones.

The rent was affordable and the location was amazing.  Central West Seattle near the Junction (essentially, West Seattle's "main street).  

We rented this home for a year.  During that time, we got married and started talking about purchasing a home.  Home prices were on the rise, but not so much that they were not affordable to us (yet).  Around this time, our landlords called us to ask if we wanted to renew our lease.  We mentioned that we had started thinking about buying.  What a coincidence...they had started thinking about selling! 

It worked out very nicely!  They offered us a great price (one where they made money but we weren't priced out) and we did everything without much hassle.  We were homeowners for the first time as a family!  Yay, us!!!

Well, Desmond got bigger, Owen decided to be born, and the Junction started to grow rapidly in population.  2 years after buying our house (3 years after moving in) we were wondering if we should branch out.  Find something a bit bigger in a neighborhood that's not so crazy. 

Here's the hard part...the Seattle market is currently the fastest growing housing market in the US.  This was both good and bad for us. 

Bad because, in order to find a good house for us, we needed to look outside of Seattle.  I don't mind leaving the city.  Taxes are high and I think Seattle politicians (and most voters) are dumb.  The problem with this is...we love Desmond's school (in Seattle), we don't want to be too far from Desmond's mom (who lives in Seattle) and our commutes are already long (to Seattle...and Bellevue for Kim).  As I said, I'll talk about the new place in the future, but we are no longer Seattleites.  We now live in Burien. 

Now, let's talk about the good part. 

In 2 years, we installed 2nd bathroom and re-fenced the entire backyard.  We also replaced some appliances, but I don't think that impacted much.  With those additions and the huge growth in Seattle, our house was appraising at $200k more than what we bought it for!  Holy CRAP! 

Now, we did things a little backwards.  Our agent was so confident that we would sell our house, that we used this equity to take out a home equity loan to use as our down payment on the new house.  Therefore, you can imagine our stress as we waited for a buyer.  We were looking at potentially having to pay 2 mortgages and a home equity loan payment at the same time.  This right after Kim spent 4 months on unpaid maternity leave.  Not ideal. 

We put the house on the market for a week and were set to review offers on a Wednesday.  Come Tuesday night...nothing.  There were some people that had expressed interest.  But, so far...no offers.  I didn't sleep much that night.

But, our agent was right.  Come Wednesday morning, we had 2 offers!  Apparently a third person was interested, but did the math and decided that she couldn't afford the payments.  But it turns out that 2 offers was enough.  They competed with each other enough to bump the price up $45k over our list price.  So, if you're doing the math...in 2 years, we made $230k.  Minus the cost of the bathroom and the fence.  But, still...a significant profit!  It is a GREAT time to be a homeowner in Seattle. 

(I apologize if this is braggy...but, I figure it's all pretty public.  All you have to do is pull up Zillow in a few weeks.)

Now, before you get too excited, we have to pay back that home equity loan, plus agent fees and money to other folks it's owed to (stagers, repairman, credit cards that we had to use while we were broke during this process, etc).  So, the money we are actually pocketing is not as great as it originally appears.  But...it's still pretty great. 

Anyway, it's a very happy time for us, but we will miss our old house.  It gave us a home for 3 great years.  Now, it will be home to another family.  I hope they enjoy the plums, Horatio the Squirrel, the new bathroom, Happy Hour at Shadowland, songs emanating from Jeffrey's living room, the kids up the street passing by on their bikes, Ercolini Park, Fairy Land (if they can find it), and the general warmth that comes from the home.  A place that has seen so many families come and go and has kept them all sheltered and warm. 

Thank you 4456! 






Wednesday, September 27, 2017

My Facebook boycott will be harder than I expected...

I seem to have forgotten exactly how much I have tied to my Facebook account.  So, an all out disabling won't work.  Tried it yesterday and was locked out of 2 of my phone games and my Zillow account.  I'm still boycotting.  I just have to find a different way to do it.  I feel if I just stop looking at it, that won't be nearly dramatic enough.  But, that's where I am, now.

Peace

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

I'm taking a break from Facebook

I think it's pretty safe to say that I am a Facebook addict.  Have been for a long time.  Most of it is probably narcissism.  But, I also use it to keep tabs on the people I care most about.  You see, I have never been good at staying in touch.  Ever.  I don't text.  I rarely call.  I use Facebook.

But, I can't take it anymore.  Facebook is no longer a good tool for watching my friends' kids be all cute and stuff.  Now, it's a place full of hatred and ignorance.

And, I can hear my bubble now!  "I'm not ignorant!  I closely follow the news and I know what's going on!"

Maybe.  But, you are still ignorant to the thoughts of others.  I know that it's at a particularly low point when I find myself feeling the urge to defend Trump.  I effing despise Trump.  But, there have been multiple times when I have come very close to saying, "That's not what he actually said," or "you took that out of context" or "Let's dispense with the hyperbole, here." 

I still don't like Trump.  He's still an ass.  He's still a horrible person. 

But, the amount of vitriol that comes from my friends on the Left Coast has gotten to be too much for me. 

Nobody actually debates, anymore.  All anyone does is attack and insult.

Remember all the "I Stand With Planned Parenthood" profile pics?  I am avidly anti-abortion.  Imagine if I put up a profile pic that said, "I DON'T Stand With Planned Parenthood."  Who would be the first person to call me sexist? 

I saw someone call John McCain a coward because he voted to move forward with a vote on Health Care.  Forget that he voted (twice now) to uphold beloved Obamacare.  He's apparently a coward for insisting that Congress do it's job and actually vote on something.  He, a man who suffered years of torture for his country, is a coward for daring to do something the Left disagreed with.  Because if we disagree, it shouldn't even be brought to the floor.

I've seen people called sexist for refusing to vote for Hillary.  Or racist because they didn't support Obamacare.  Yet, only a handful call for the (allegedly) child raping mayor of Seattle to be removed from office.  Total silence from the left.  I ask why and the response is "Well, look at this Republican that did something similar." 

And now there is this NFL thing. 

I understand why the players are sitting/kneeling/hiding for the national anthem.  I sympathize with their goals.  I acknowledge that there is a significant problem.  I also understand how it could be considered disrespectful. I won't boycott the NFL.  I enjoy football too much.  Someone else's expression won't drive me from that enjoyment.  But, it doesn't mean that it's irrational for a person to dislike the protest.   The players know they are causing as stir and, I suspect, it's their goal to do just that.  Create a conversation around the topic. 

The problem is...we're not having a conversation.  We're yelling at each other and calling each other names.  And then justifying our name calling because FUCK NAZIS! 

When did we become such assholes?  When did we stop caring about dissenting opinions?  When did we get to the point that only our opinion matters? 

Russia is winning this war.  What a brilliant piece of espionage that we've all fallen for.  Facebook has become a tool to close our minds.  And, I hate to tell this to all my, supposedly enlightened, liberal friends...but, you are just as much a part of this problem.  Russia got you, too!  You've stopped discussing and debating.  You've simply started spewing.  And, I'm fed up.

I'm taking myself out of this pool of incestuous opinion.  I will continue to follow the news and make up my own mind.  Perhaps I'll even find some friends to have a beer and a philosophical discussion with.  If you're interested, send me a note!  Perhaps some of you will even change my mind or maybe I'll change your mind on something.  Perhaps not.  But, at least we'll talk. 

Debate is healthy.  It's American!  This Facebook crap that's going on...not so much.  I'm out.  Peace!


Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Reasons I will Quit Google: Kombucha

I overheard this one from someone else.  So, I guess it should actually be titled, "Reason someone else will quit Google."

"I hate when they don't have the kombucha flavor that I like."

It's obvious Google doesn't care about employees.  I mean, I bet she could get the kombucha she likes at Amazon.  She would have to pay for it, but she could get it.  Forcing her to settle for free kombucha that she doesn't like is completely unacceptable. 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Conversation Pieces...Desmond's favorite camp of all time

Dropping Big Little dude off at Blue Angels camp, today.  Really rad camp at the Boeing Museum of Flight during SeaFair.  The Blue Angels perform every year at SeaFair.  They practice on Thursday and Friday, flying out of Boeing Field.  I am a bit jealous of my kid, this week.

Anyway, as I was dropping him off this morning, he was a chatterbox, telling about all the cool stuff they are doing.

Des: "We got to go under the Blackbird.  We got to go in the old control tower where they still have a working computer that tracks all the planes.  We got to go in the cockpit of REAL planes and learn how the planes fly.  *etc, etc, etc...on and on and on*"

Me: "Wow!  That all sounds really awesome!  I'm glad you've had so much fun!  Would you say this has been your favorite camp?"

Des: *thinking about it*  "I would definitely say it's been ONE of my favorite camps." 

Me: "Oh, really...what would you say has been your favorite camp of all time?"

Des:  "Grandma camp"

And there you have it folks.  No need to spend $400 on fancy camps that have rad fighter jets and Top Gun pilots.  Just need a $99 Alaska Airlines ticket to Arizona. 



Friday, July 28, 2017

Jason gets political...I'm voting No on Prop 1

I thought I would do a political post today.  No, I won't complain about Trump (except this one time...Trump sucks!), I won't make fun of Democrats for sitting in their little bubble and not taking a look in the mirror (except this one time...Democrats...you're dumb!  Your elitism and "my way or you're a racist homophobe" attitude is a major reason why Trump won!), and I won't talk about wasteful spending routinely voted for by the Seattle and King County public.

Oh, wait...that last one I actually am going to talk about.

So...Prop. 1.  It seeks to raise sales tax by %.01.  Supposedly, this is approximately $30/year for the average household.  The goal of Prop 1 is to "provide increased funding for the arts, science and heritage education and access for students and families throughout King County."  Basically, as I understand it from Bill Nye and the multiple adds I see when I visit the symphony or the theatre, it provides funding to enable public school kids to attend shows or concerts or science activities, etc, for free. 

Here's the website: https://www.accessforallwa.org/

Perhaps you are surprised that I do not support this.  I am a patron of the arts.  I am a season ticket holder with the Seattle Theatre Group and the Paramount Theatre.  I purchase an annual package from the Seattle Symphony, usually 5 or 6 concerts.  I also donate to both organizations.  I teared up when I saw my oldest perform in Annie this past year.  He had 3 lines and they were the BEST LINES IN THE WHOLE SHOW!!!

And, while I don't make the same investment in science or heritage initiatives, I see the value in both.  We frequently visit the Seattle Science Center and Children's Museum.  I want my boys to be exposed to all of these things!  I want all children to be exposed to all of these things. 

So...why am I voting no?

Believe it or not, my complaints have nothing to do with the fact that my kids aren't in public school.  So, this will not benefit them at all.  But, that point certainly isn't lost on me.

I am voting no because I think there are more important places to spend our money.

The sales tax in King County is already at 10%.  And, the city council just got done telling us how regressive this tax is when they decided to pass a city wide income tax.  10% of the cost of anything I buy.  And, where does it go?

I mean...there are homeless people living on corners and under bridges all over the city. 

The police department is understaffed and needs to spend more and more money on training so they stop shooting minorities. 

The schools are meh.

I could go on. 

We are already over taxed and taxed in stupid ways...mostly sales and property.  We've been hearing all year about why our tax system is regressive.  Except, in this case, that's apparently ok? 

I acknowledge that many people can't afford to expose their children to the arts and sciences outside of what their schools give to them.  But, this is where private donations should step up.

When STG (Seattle Theatre Group) called me to donate, they told me all about their program for helping underprivileged families attend the theatre.  I thought this was awesome, so I wrote a check. 

The 5th Avenue, every year, has a program where high school students produce, direct and star in one of their season shows.  I thought this was a rad idea, so I wrote a check.

There are many people just as excited about things like this and many of them have much bigger wallets.  Call them.  Why take more money away from someone who is already spending a ton of money on school supplies and clothes for the upcoming school year? 

Arts are important.  They are VERY important.  But, so is solving our homeless problem.  So is solving the opioid problem.  So is solving the affordable housing problem.  So is transportation. 

I'm done giving the city and county more money.  They don't know what to do with the money they currently have.  I have zero desire to give them money for something non-urgent when they can't seem to figure out the immediate problems we're facing. 

Access For All




Friday, July 21, 2017

Reasons I will Quit Google - Butter

Every day, there are fresh baguettes and home made butter in the micro kitchens.  Recently, they decided to replace the honey sriracha butter (which I thought was delicious) with a gross chocolate almond butter.  I had to choose to eat yucky chocolate butter, eat a dry baguette or skip it all entirely.  What a horrible choice to force me to make. 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

My kid hates taking showers...except that one time

Lately, getting Desmond to take a shower has been similar to getting Trump supporters to admit their candidate is an idiot.

In other words...hella difficult.

In fact, just this weekend, we were preparing to go to the symphony.  We were getting off a long week of outdoor summer camp AND an overnighter with his buddy Connor.  So, lots of running around and getting sweaty and gross.  So, I made him take a shower before the concert. 

(The performance was Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in Concert...the Seattle Symphony played the soundtrack to the movie while it was projected on a screen above the stage.  This is the 3rd such performance I have been to.  Psycho and Looney Toons being the other two.  So much fun!)

He goes in to the bathroom and comes out wet.  He gets dressed and walks to me while I am changing Opie.  Desmond puts his arms on the dresser/changing table and I instantly get a whiff of what smells suspiciously like BO. 

Immediately I stick my nose in my shirt and inhale.  Is it me?  No...I showered earlier.  I'm fine.  Is it Opie?  He often smells like pee, but he's not BO-ey, yet.  Not him.

I stick my nose in Desmond's armpit. 

DUDE! 

Honestly, I'm not even sure he got in the shower.  His pits were disgusting.  I smelled his hair, too.  Also gross. 

"You didn't do anything!  Get back in there and take another shower!"

"I already took one!  I hate showers!  I don't stink!"  Whatever.  Lots of complaining.  And, he complains all the time.  Every time he has to take a shower. 

I don't remember doing this when I was a kid.  Maybe I did, but I don't remember it.  I do remember playing in the bathtub until I was, like, 16 or so.  I had these little guys that would always battle each other in the bubbles.  It was awesome.  Wish it wasn't weird to play in the tub as an adult.

Anyway, getting Desmond to clean himself up has been a big pain in the butt.

Except this one time....

Yes, there was one time, recently, that Desmond didn't fight to take a shower.  In fact, it was his idea.  It wasn't a regular shower night.  It was a Saturday.  We hadn't done anything exceptionally active that would make him stink anymore than an 8 year old boy usually stinks.  We weren't going anywhere fancy the next day that he needed to be clean for. 

Yet, Desmond, of his own accord, comes into the bedroom and says to Kim and me, "I think I am going to take a shower.  It helps me rest."  He then proceeded to take about a half hour long shower.

This happened shortly after we got back from seeing Wonder Woman.

I'm sure it's unrelated. 


Thursday, July 13, 2017

Babies are hard

You know those new parents that post all these lovely things on Facebook talking about how amazing their perfect little newborn is and how amazing it is to be a parent and how beautiful and amazing life is?

Those people are dirty liars.

Babies are effing hard.  Like, really really hard.

One of my biggest fears in going back into this whole parenting thing was the infant stage.  In the grand scheme of babies, Desmond was pretty easy.  I know this.  But...that never meant that I LOVED being a new parent.  I loved Desmond, for sure!  And, I love Opie.  But, dayam if I didn't often wonder why I gave up my cushy life for one that involves a baby.

Well, here we are again.  Mr. Owen Francis.

Thank the Lord God above for programming our bodies with an unconditional love for our offspring.  Because, if we didn't have that, I would be trying to trade this kid in for one of BeyoncĂ©'s babies, or something.  He is not an easy baby.

This kid NEVER sleeps.  Like, ever.  He takes, maybe, 2 or 3 ten minute naps throughout the day.  I know that kids fight sleep.  But, this kid is a black belt.  And, in order to keep him from melting down from tiredness, you have to hold him while standing up and bouncing him.  Don't ever put him in a sitting position.  He won't like that and he'll cry.  Don't walk around without bouncing him.  He won't like that and he'll cry.  Don't, under any circumstances, put him down.  He won't like that and he'll cry.

I'm feeling for Kim a lot.  I work during the day.  Kim is an amazing woman.  If I say I want her to sleep downstairs some night so she can rest, she refuses.  She says, "You have to go to work all day."
I recently acknowledged to her that my job is easier.  I have a routine.  I know what I am doing.  Any curveball I am thrown I have typically experienced before and can adjust.  None if this is true with a newborn.  Not to mention a newborn who is almost never happy.

I have to remind myself that we're only 2 months in.  He's still itty bitty.  But, then I instead end up reminding myself that we are a LONG way from 18 years old.

I am currently writing this at 10:30.  I am beat ass tired.  Kim is already in bed (hopefully) getting some sleep.  I could easily crash right here and now.  But...I am on the first shift tonight.  I HATE falling asleep and having the baby wake me up 15 minutes later.  I would rather just stay up, take care of him when he wakes and then crash for 4 or 5 hours after that.  Kim takes the next shift.

But, when I do this, when I stay up, the dude doesn't wake up until midnight.  Last night, I stayed up until midnight before finally going to bed.  He woke up at 12:30.

Oh...how funny.  Just as I typed that, he has started to peep.  Maybe I'll get to bed early.  Night, all!

Good thing he's cute.






Tuesday, July 11, 2017

No more babies for me!!!

You heard that correctly.  I am done having babies!  Forever.  No more little Pankows running around after this one.

I manned up and went to visit the one and only Dr. Snip!

No, that's not his real name.  But, it is the name of the clinic.  And, what a brilliant name it is.

Why did I decide to do this, you may ask?

Well...simple.  I don't want any more babies.  Thankfully, neither does Kim.  Now, there are multiple ways to make sure you don't have more babies.  There's birth control until the end of time.  Or until my wife's body enacts it's natural form of birth control.  Then there's the tubal something or other where the doc goes in and ties all Kim's plumbing up.  Then there's the snippy snip

Birth control means continues pill popping or other method which just isn't that fun.  Tube typing is another invasive procedure...although, she's already got the scar from her C-section.  Maybe they could just go in that way.  Oh well...too late now.

The obvious choice was a vasectomy.

I have a few friends who have done this.  I also have friends who absolutely refuse!

Well...now I am in the club.  It's been about a week and a half.  Here's how it went down.

ALERT...TMI POST COMMENCING.  IF YOU DON'T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT, TURN BACK NOW!!!!

I scheduled the procedure on the Friday before Independence Day.  Google gave us both Monday the 3rd and Tuesday the 4th off.  I figured, get snipped on Friday and have 4 days to recover.  Brilliant!  Oh, plus...Desmond was visiting Grandma and Grandpa in Arizona and Kim was taking Owen to the other Grandma and Grandpa in Richland.  This means I have the whole house to myself!  I can squat on the couch and play video games while icing my nuts all weekend!

One small catch...I'm not allowed to drive myself home.

Uber it is!!!

You probably know this about me given some of my posts.  I am not shy about talking about stuff like this.  I mean, it's life, right?  It's only embarrassing if you let yourself be embarrassed.  Well...I am the same way in real life.  So, when the Uber driver asked me if I had any plans for the weekend, I said, "Why, yes...I do."

When he learned what I was doing, he asked me about 1000 questions.  Dude was a young guy.  Unmarried but with a girlfriend.  But, he was sure curious!

Anyway, arrive at the office and the get me right in.  A woman comes in and gives me a lot more info (with pictures) than I actually wanted.  Like, I didn't realize that they actually bring the "vaz" out of your nutsack.  I would have been fine without knowing that part.

Lady leaves, Dr. comes in.  Super nice dude.  Completely non awkward.  But, I guess you figure out perfect bed side manner in situations like this when all you do all day, every day is look at man junk.
No gown required.  I crawl up and basically drop my drawers a bit.  And he goes to work.

Now, Dr. Snip advertises a "No Needle, No Scalpel" procedure.  The anesthetic is applied through a weird pen thing.  He zapped me twice.  It didn't hurt at all.  He described it as feeling like your being snapped by a rubber band.  I have felt worse rubber bands.  The only problem is...2 zaps didn't cut it.

I mean, that didn't surprise me given the amount of space that needed to be numbed, if you know what I'm saying.

He started tugging around and I was like, "Agh, DUDE!"  You ever try to remove an avocado pit with a spoon?  That's what it felt like.  On my avocado pit.

So, he zapped me again.  After that...no problems.

He was pretty chatty during the whole thing.  My body reacted a bit (sweating, high heart rate) but it passed.  At one point the Dr. says to me, "Do you want to see your vaz?"

I answered, "Nope."

"Ok," he says.  He slaps a gauze on me (no tape, no stickiness...just loose gauze) and sends me on my way.

The Uber driver on the way home thought this was the funnies thing he had ever heard.  He seriously laughed at me the whole drive.

Anyway, I got home, grabbed an ice pack and proceeded to lay low.  Kim and Owen decided to come home early, so my weekend of gaming was foiled a bit.  But, that's ok.  I found myself missing them a lot.  Mostly because I didn't have anyone to complain to about how much by balls hurt.

The pain was mild.  It felt like I had been punched in the stomach by Hulk Hogan.  I am not a doctor, but I haven't been able to figure out why my stomach hurt.  I'm sure I could look it up, but I am too lazy.

So, that's my story!  No more babies for me!  Kim can still have babies, but I can't.  Guess I can really let loose and go crazy, now.

Oh...I forgot.  Before I left the office, the Dr. says to me, "You know how when little kids are good at the doctor the get a lollypop?  Well, here you go."  And he hands me this.


Sad that I can never be a repeat customer.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

The worst smell I ever smelled

I still remember the worst smell I ever smelled.

It was from boot camp.  Long long ago. 

All the new sailors arrived in Chicago at different times.  We basically had to wait around the airport until everyone else arrived.  That took pretty much the rest of the day.  Once everyone arrived, we headed to Naval Station Great Lakes.  We did a bunch of administrative stuff, got our uniforms, heard some rules and regulations and went to bed around midnight.

They woke us up at 4 am and we immediately got to work: marching, exercising, marching, running, exercising, marching, marching running...basically, lots and lots of physical activity.  All day long. 

Finally, before dinner, we headed back to the barracks and we were told to shower.  All of us.  We all go into the bathroom and get undressed to clean up.  There were probably 20 of us.  20 dudes who have been working out all day, traveling the day before and haven't showered in at least 48 hours.  Butt naked (emphasis on BUTTS).  In one bathroom (much like a high school locker room without the lockers).  No ventilation. 

It smelled.SO.BAD!  Like, some of us were literally gagging.  We were laughing about it.  It was pretty damn funny.  But, man...it smelled horrible!  Think of all the places that get smelly on one's body, multiply that times the hours of physical activity, multiplied by 20 naked dudes. 

Got that smell in your mind? 



Ok, now I have something worse.  For the first time, my brain can barely remember that boot camp smell because it has something new. 

Imagine a small outdoor garbage can. You know the one.  Where you throw all your house garbage.  Ours isn't too big because we're such awesome recyclers and composters.  On average, we probably put one bag of garbage per week in there.  Until Owen came along.  Now, it's one bag of garbage and about 3 or 4 bags of dirty diapers.

Now...imagine going out to that garbage can just before garbage day to throw some last minute items in before putting the can on the curb.  Imagine that at least one bag of dirty diapers has been in there for 6 days.  Then, imagine other bags of dirty diapers being put in there as the week progresses.

Now...imagine opening that can. 

This is the new Worst Smell I Have Ever Smelled!!!

Image result for horrible smell


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Reasons I will quit Google

You may remember, I recently took a job at Google. 

It's been pretty damn amazing.  I am really darn happy with this move.  They treat us really well here.  So well, in fact, that there is a term called #GoogleProblems.  Kinda like First World Problems.  Problems that you wouldn't have if you didn't work at Google. 

Googlers often have to remind ourselves that we have it really really damn good here.  But, it's still fun to mock ourselves when we catch someone, oneself included, complaining about something. 

I will give you an example by kicking off my new category: Reasons I will quit Google.

Today's reason I will quit Google:

Today, after I arrived, I stopped in the cafeteria to pick up some free breakfast.  I selected a salted bagel with cream cheese and some capers and smoked salmon (lox).  Unfortunately, the capers are SUPER potent!  Now...I have bad breath.  And I am out of gum.  Ridiculous.

I don't know if this will work out. 

Friday, June 16, 2017

Farewell 2nd Grade...on to 3rd

Desmond wrapped up the school year earlier this week.  My oldest little dude is rapidly becoming not so little. 

This was a good year, I think.  Desmond's teacher, Ms. Hoch, was just what he needed.  Kind and loving with just the right amount of kick you in the pants when you're out of line. 

The beginning of the year started a bit rough for Des.  Multiple card changes (the equivalent of getting your name on the board followed by a check or two when we were kids) and we got a few not fun notes home from Ms. Hoch. 

But, he turned things around!  We've been getting fell greens the vast majority of the time since January.  He still slips up here and there, but it's usually more about not paying attention than keeping his hands to himself, now.

Top this off with good grades and exceptional MAPS test scores (outscoring the district and national averages by considerable margins...brag alert!), and the kid makes us proud.

But, that's not all!  Second grade is a big year for little Catholics, too.  This was the year Desmond made both his first Reconciliation and his First Communion! 



I don't recall if I posted about this, but there are a couple pics for you.  He was a bit scared going in, but he confessed those sins like a champ! 

Then there was First Communion.  He looked so sharp!  Shaundar, Kim and I all walked up with him as he received his First Communion from Fr. Jack.  It was a very proud moment for me as a Catholic dad. 

This was taken just before mass.  I mean...COME ON!
With Fr. Jack

With his homie Garret

The Communion class, looking adorable.

And that's about it.  On to 3rd grade.  The 3rd grade teacher is young.  I'm hoping he large class of boys doesn't forget everything the Ms. Hoch taught them.  I'm sure they'll do fine!  Onward!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

This guy is One Month old today.

You know...I used to think those one or two or three month signs or ties or shirts were really lame.

Then, my wife put one on my kid. 




Now they're super adorable! 

Monday, June 5, 2017

So..how you doin'?

Well, kid's been here three weeks and I haven't posted since he was born.  Label me a crappy blogger. 

So...how's it going?  Let me tell you!!!

Opie had to hang out in the hospital for an extra day.  His Billy Reuben count was high.  I don't know who Billy Reuben is...but I hate him.  However, one night under the bright blue lights and we were sent home.  Not too bad.

California Tan

So, we went home!

Shout outs here to Shaundar and to the Romines.  While Desmond was very excited to be at our place to hang out with his little bro, we were exhausted.  Kim and Owen were trying to figure out this breast feeding thing.  And nobody was sleeping.  Shaundar kept Des through our regular time with him.  It was a huge help.  And, Kim's parents agreed to stay through that first week and into the next.  This was a lifesaver, especially since I still had to leave town for a couple days to get Googled.

Took Owen to his first pediatrician apt the day after we got out of the hospital.  We were assigned a pediatrician who I am guessing is pretty new.  This assumption is based on the fact that she looks pretty young and that she always feels like she's reading from a script.  Check these boxes, move along to the next thing.  Not sure we'll stay with her or not.  Stay tuned.

After his first apt, Billy Reuben was still hanging around.  Jerk.  Dr. recommended that we supplement with formula since he wasn't getting enough from the boob to push out those Billys. 

What else? 

Desmond is an awesome big brother!  I have to occasionally remind him that babies are fragile.  He wants to hug him SO hard and he's sometimes been just a little too bouncy and/or non-self aware.  But, he really really wants to help wherever he can.  I feel bad saying no sometimes.  But, he is always wanting to hold or carry Owen.  I suspect we'll let him do more when Owen starts getting more control over his body.  But, I know how nervous I get when I am holding him and he does one of those warningless body jerks. 

Bros

Speaking of Desmond...Desmond totally made his first communion recently!  With all this baby stuff, I didn't post about that!  Stay tuned...I'll get that up ASAP.

Anywhoo...what else? 

Ummm...sleeping sucks.  And, I am getting a lot more of it than Kim is.  Kid wakes up every 2 hours.  Kim usually let's me sleep through the late night feedings but will tap at me at the early morning ones.  This is usually good timing for me to feed Opie, wake up Desmond and get us all ready for work and school. 

I don't really think there is much else to share.  Nothing exciting, anyway.  Kim is a great mom!  I mean, she was already a great bonus mom.  But, it's one thing to inherit an older kid that is already cared for and really just needs to know that you love him and will take care of him.  It's another to have a completely useless ball off poop that keeps you awake and destroys your life as you know it.  It's hard to remember as all this is happening that we are paying it forward a bit in anticipation of all the greatness to come.  Kim is a natural.  She's been pee'd on, pooped on and barfed on.  She's getting 4 hours of sleep on average.  She has to deal with a house filled with boys who smell and mess up her order.  But, she still manages to take care of all of us. 

I mean...I guess I could take on some of the work.  But, that would just be setting the wrong expectations. 

So, there's a quick update for you.  I'll try to post more as we continue along on this ship called Life.  in the meantime...here's some pictures.

Mom and baby post tanning session

I don't remember what night this was.  I just remember that I was beat and he wouldn't sleep.  Guess I love him anyway.

Des helped out with the Dr. visit. He's pretty proud to be a big bro.

Opie's Godfather Aaron came to visit.  I think they bore each other.

This doesn't have anything to do with Owen or our family. But, it was in my saved photos and it makes me laugh. So, here you go!

Life goes on outside of new babies! Des performed in his school's spring concert!

Have I mentioned I love baby graphic tees/onesies?

First trip out of the house!  Kim and I walked to get some beer while Opie slept.

My grandpa loves baby feet.  So, here's a pic of baby feet. 

Bags under the eyes must be genetic. Or he exhausts himself.

Sup, yo?

A highlight of my evenings is when Desmond reads to his little bro.

Helping(ish) with feeding while zoning in front of the TV.

Pankow boys!  Destined for good looks.



Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Opie? What's Opie?

Owen Pankow

O.P.

Opie

Started saying it shortly after we picked out a name. It stuck. :-)

Also, we figure he'll look like Opie from Sons of Anarchy

Opie Winston from FX's "Sons of Anarchy," played by Ryan Hurst.:

And, heeeeere's Opie!

Owen Francis Pankow!  Born May 14, 2017.  6 lbs, 15 ounces.  Somewhere between 6 and 60 inches.  Lots of hair.  Uhhh...what else do people ask for when it comes to babies? 

Welcome to the world, Owen!

So, let me tell you how this all went down.  Pics at the bottom of the post. 

It's Monday night.  I am NOT currently in Mountain View.  I am at Swedish Hospital in Seattle with my beautiful wife and my 2 (count them...one, two) sons! 

Saturday night, Kim and I were chilling at home.  I had already checked into my flight to San Jose scheduled for the next day and I was procrastinating putting my bag together.  Kim had just come over and kissed me goodnight.  I was going to watch an episode of American Gods.  Kim goes into the bathroom.

2 minutes later, "Ummm...Honey???  I think my water just broke."

No it didn't.  It's too early for that.  I have to be on a plane in 14 hours. 

Alas...her water did indeed break. 

FULL STOP!  SHIFT GEARS!!!

Emails sent to my new boss and my recruiter.  Ticket and hotel cancelled (to be rescheduled), forget about a luggage for San Jose, we already have hospital bags ready.  I checked all the boxes to kick off the labor process and spend a few hours at home while Kim labors there.

Nope.

Contractions progress very rapidly.  Like, really really rapidly.  They weren't lasting a full minute.  But, there were coming within 5 minutes of each other.  So, we opt to go to the hospital.  Worse case, they send us home.

They didn't send us home.  This baby is on the way!!!

I've mentioned before that I think women are amazing.  If I had to give birth, I would have filed for lifetime celibacy.

We got to the hospital around 10:30 or so.  Right to triage and taken to a birthing suite within 30 minutes.  Kim had an epidural put in around 11:30 or so and things started to calm down.  At that point, the nurse suggested we try to get some rest while we wait for the baby to move down a bit.  So we did.

Around 7ish, the pushing began. 

Push, push, PUUUUUUSH!  Ok, didn't work.  Go again.  Push, push, PUUUUUUUUSH!!!  No luck.

4 hours later, Dr. comes in with forceps.  Apparently, she's an expert with these.

(Side note...Kim's OB, Dr. Oman is pretty rad.  She's young, but she's also no nonsense.  She was totally rad and she's been with us from start to finish, from our original insemination to...well, what's coming up.)

Dr. Oman has the forceps.  But, after feeling around, she's not 100% sure she wants to use them.  It sounds like the problem is that Owen was not turning properly.  The Dr. wasn't able to get a good read on his shoulders.  Was he not turning because he's shoulders are too big?  It is his head?  What's going on?  Regardless, he's not coming out correctly.  We need to take alternative measures.  In her words, we should pick one. Nobody needs to be a hero.  So, rather than attempt forceps, which might not work, her recommendation was a C-section. 

So, C-section it is.

Now, I know many people who have had C-sections.  They've been successful.  Happy, healthy babies.  But, it was still scary going into an OR with a bunch of strange people (although, Dr. Oman was the surgeon, which was rad) getting ready to watch your wife get cut open. 

But, it went super smoothly!  Dr. O walked us through what was going to happen.  They put the big blue sheet up so we couldn't see what was happening, and they got to work. 

A few minutes in, Kim says to me, "I just felt them put an organ on my stomach."  ew.

A few minutes after that, I hear Dr. Oman say, "Dad, do you want to watch your son be born."

"Nope," I reply.

"Yes you do," she says.  "Stand up."

So, I stand up.  And there is my son, Owen Francis Pankow, being held by the doctor, umbilical chord attached to him at one end and going into my wife's bloody stomach at the other.  It was amazing.  Then he made his first noise.  Kim and I looked at each other and we were both crying.  I sat back down before I passed out.

I went over and hung out with Opie while Kim got stitched up.   Other than one "battle wound" from the surgery and a bit of a cone head from being stuck somewhere in Kim's pelvis, he was perfect! 

Due to the C-section, we get an extra day at the hospital.  Desmond is very excited to have his bro at home.  Shaundar brought him by last night to meet Owen for the first time.  It was one of the highlights of my whole life.  He's came again tonight for a bit to hang out.  He's going to be a great big bro. 

That's all I got for you.  Here's some pics! 

Right out of the oven.

What. The heck, people.  I did not ask to come out.

Mama gets to hold her baby for the first time. 

Kim's team.

Just don't look over the curtain.

Mommy should be pretty proud of her work.

Meeting his big bro for the first time! 

I've got some coming, soon.  This post was started the day we were supposed to leave.  Alas, we had to stay an extra day so Owen could use the tanning bed.  I'll write about that in the next post.  Stay tuned.

In the meantime...here is my new favorite video OF.ALL.TIME!


100% unprompted.  Love my boys!