Baby Food For Thought

Baby Food For Thought

My favorite part of the day has always been early morning. I like to get up before my wife, before noisy traffic, often before the sun has risen. The world is still a peaceful place and I can ease into life, like gently lowering myself into a warm bath infused with some sort of ridiculous overpriced chick-nonsense scented bath ball.

And then a baby fart rudely awakens me from my beautiful daydream.

Theses days I’m getting up even earlier than before. But it’s not to enjoy a few moments of quiet introspection, or a leisurely stretching session, or to watch mankind destroying itself, aka the news. It’s because I have an 8 month old baby boy who owns my mornings, along with any other previously labeled “me time”.

Ironically, I love these morning more than any mornings that came before them. Before Frankie Four was born the morning would (he said “morning wood”) be dedicated to avoiding all other human contact. Now the start of my day is dedicated solely to interacting with my son.

I usually wake up before Lisa and Four, so I hustle to shower and complete a few chores like take out the trash, wash the dishes, or poop. In the midst of these tasks, usually the pooping, I inevitably hear a call of, “Daaaaddy”, which is Lisa’s cute way of saying, “This kid chomped on my boobs half the night while you slept like you’re on vacation, so batter up motherfucker.” I drop whatever I’m doing and rush in to find my boy smiling up at me. He’s a happy kid in general, almost always smiling or laughing. But he’s got this big sleepy grin when he first wakes up that reminds me of what a great life I have.

I scoop him up and he presses his face against mine, his little warm cheek soft against my cheek, his arm around my neck, and nothing else in the world exists. It’s just me and my son and a love so strong that I don’t think my heart can contain it. There are mornings when holding him almost brings me to tears because I’d never imagined that being a dad would feel this good.

Now that I’m done weeping on my Macbook Pro like a little bitch, let’s get to the fun part—breakfast! This truly is the best part of my day. Every morning I put Four in his high chair and I make us breakfast. My oatmeal, his rice cereal mixed with carrots. My coffee, his steamed sweet potato. My scrambled egg whites, his scrambled egg whites. Actually, they’re the same egg whites. I don’t make them in separate batches. That would be stupid and inefficient.

Bad Ass DadI prepare eggs delicately, hence the extended pinky.

Bad Ass Dad CookingPlating and presentation of an ample bicep is key to being a good chef.

Bad Ass Dad feeding babyFour glares at me waits patiently between bites.

Bad Ass Dad feeding babyMy cereal looks good dad, but mommy taught me to try to eat your food instead of my own.

Bad Ass Dad feeding babyI’m not kidding old man. Gimme the goddamn oatmeal.

Bad Ass Dad feeding babyI’m done now. Be gone.

Before I say anything else, let me just point out how much I love my son. I allowed Lisa to take these photos prior to applying any hair product to my always perfect coif. In essence, I’ve bared my soul for you, for him, and for all mankind. You’re welcome. (Also, side note, I don’t have a soul because that’s not a real thing.)

This is a pretty typical morning for us. We also spend some time playing, maybe read a book, and practicing our conversation. I’m in an office Monday through Friday, have a few personal projects I work on, and go to the gym 4-5 days per week. Other than that, my family gets 100% of my time and attention. In a perfect world I’d spend all of my time with them, but then we’d be living in a dumpster behind an Arby’s and worse, be eating Arby’s. So, I maximize my time to the best of my ability in order to take an active role in raising my son. Lisa busts her ass on a daily basis taking care of Four (and me), and she deserves some time for herself. But more than that, I want to be a good dad more than I’ve ever wanted to be anything in my life. Each and every day I wake up grateful for the opportunity to be a father, and I want my son to know how much that means to me. If I can communicate that with morning snuggles, a diaper change, and some scrambled eggs, I think I’ve done my job.

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If you enjoy the blog then follow me on Instagram (@frankprather) for pics of our daily adventures.

First Fourth Of July Baby

First Fourth Of July Baby

The 4th of July is one of my favorite holidays. First off, it’s during summer, the only season that should legally be allowed to exist. Spring sucks because it’s rainy, making it impossible to keep my car looking pristine. Yes, I live in California where there’s allegedly a water shortage and people claim we “need” rain. However, I live 1.35 miles from the Pacific Ocean which I can assure you is made almost entirely of water, and lots of it. Fall is just depressing. And winter is well, fuck winter. It occasionally drops below 60 degrees here during winter which means I have to wear a jacket over my extra-medium shirts, covering up my huge arms and ample pecs.

Anyway, this 4th was particularly special because it was filled with firsts. It was our first as a family, my first as a married man, and my first as a dad. More importantly, there were a few big firsts for my son, Frankie Four.

American BabyHe gave his first speech in preparation for when he’s President of The United States Of America.

Baby in treeHe climbed his first tree
BECAUSE THAT IS A PERFECTLY SAFE
THING TO DO WITH A GODDAMN BABY.

baby on sideHe’s been capable of sleeping on his side for a while and also able to roll from his tummy to his back. This weekend he figured out how to roll from his back to his tummy with ease so he flips himself back and forth constantly.

baby eats feet

baby at the beachAlthough the big eating news is in the video below, I should also mention
that he’s eaten a significant amount of sand which is clearly his
favorite beach activity aside of showing off his physique.

Family at beach

baby watching fireworks

We took him to watch fireworks on the beach which fascinated him. At 10pm he was still wide-eyed and fixated on the explosion of lights in the sky. And, unlike some babies that act like little wussy babies, he loved the loud explosions because my 18 week old son is a real man.

Manhattan Beach concert in parkHe also went to his first concert in the park
with some of his favorite people.

Even with all that excitement, there were still two truly big firsts that occurred in the same day.

Four, on the 4th of July, declared his (extremely limited) independence from the boob as he devoured his first solid food.

And the second big first, my personal favorite, is Frankie Four showing off his massive leg strength and standing up with no more than a little help balancing.

My son will probably never know the significance of his first Independence Day but, for me, it might as well have been my first 4th of July celebration. Because every one of his new experiences, and every new step in his growth, and every new little thing he does, causes my heart to explode like the grand finale in the worlds biggest fireworks display.

18 Weeks Pregnant – Welcome To The Showing

18 Weeks Pregnant – Welcome To The Showing

The answer is, “Your face doesn’t even look pregnant yet, but it’s going to get fat.” 

What is “Things to say when you want your fiancé to stab you”, Alex?

That is correct.

Bad Ass Dad Wife Knife

So, Lisa really started showing this week which one of us is excited about and, spoiler alert, it’s not the one who’s showing. Don’t get me wrong, she’s excited to be 18 weeks pregnant. However, in a perfect world the baby would grow outside of her body, perhaps wrapped in a warm tortilla or on a low simmer in a Crock Pot. After years of working out, Spinning, running Spartan Races, and eating healthy, her stomach was flat as a board. A smooth, supple, 26 year old board that is way too young for me but I can so I do, don’t judge me.

Bad Ass Dad Spartan Chick

Bad Ass Dad Pregnant Belly

When she noticed the first millimeter of baby fat a few weeks ago you’d have thought she woke up looking like the Pillsbury Doughboy. I, on the other hand, being someone who usually notices a change in her body composition at the molecular level, didn’t even flinch. Whereas she was concerned about starting to show and becoming less attractive, I couldn’t wait for her to look like she’d swallowed a Volkswagen whole. I’ve been encouraging her to eat which, for those who know me, goes against the core of my being. It’s no secret. Being in a relationship with me is an eating disorder. Yet these days I find myself asking her, “Do you want ice cream?” and not meaning it as a test to determine if I need a weight clause in our pre-nup.

Bad Ass Dad Wife Cupcake

Look, Lisa is beautiful.

Lisa fit is even more beautiful.

Lisa pregnant is easily the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. 

Bad Ass Dad Wife Eats

The problem is that I’ve been so encouraging about her healthy eating and fitness, which she might describe as emotionally abusive fat shaming, that Lisa feels even the slightest weight gain on her part makes me want to gouge my eyes out with a kebab skewer. What she doesn’t realize is that, much to my own shock and amazement, pregnancy is a game changer. This past week, as her belly expanded like a tin Jiffy Pop pan in fast forward, rather than forwarding her a Craigslist “Roommate Wanted” ad, I fell more deeply in love than I ever have been. Now I’m like a kid with a Chia pet, trying to grow her as quickly as possible. I’ve finally realized what they mean by “pregnancy brain” because I fucking have it. Rather than serving her half an ice cube for dinner I say things like, “You should be eating more,” or “That’s not enough food for you.”

Who am I?

There’s really no denying that an impending baby changes your perspective. It’s not that things that mattered before are less important, just that some other things are now more important. I’m a very particular person and I don’t apologize for liking what I like, or what I consider aesthetically pleasing. I have never been shy about expressing that I find a fit, firm body pleasing to the eye. Health, vitality, and athleticism are attractive to me. But nothing, and I mean nothing, is more attractive, more gorgeous, and more inconceivably stunning to me than the site of my fiancé and her rapidly expanding but-not-expanding-fast-enough-for-me pregnant belly. When we get married in two weeks, and she’s quietly lamenting the way her stomach is testing the structural integrity of her wedding dress, I’ll  be grinning from ear to ear. Because she’ll be looking exactly the way I want her to look, like the mother of our child.

Bad Ass Dad Pregnant Wife