Daaaaahhh Fall.

Chachi Milk enjoyed pre-Halloween autumn and all it had to offer this weekend. First off, we carved a Mickey Mouse pumpkin for our front porch. Rose and Vincent did the brunt of the work and I have to admit, I was impressed. Usually these things, when not done by trained professionals, look less than spectacular. (Ed. Note: the shine on the pumpkin is from the cooking spray Rose read helps keep it preserved while outside for weeks at a time. Rose = Mrs. Wizard.)

To celebrate Halloween in more adult fashion, the two Chachi parents dressed as two other fantastic parents - Britney and K-Fed! Vincent saw us decked out for a minute or two before we left for "Uncle Kevin & Aunt Julie's Mommy & Daddy party" and was predictably nonplussed. I think he was just glad we weren't clowns. (Ed. Note 2 - I believe this was the first time in my life that I purchased and wore a wife-beater. Quite comfortable but revealing.) The cool thing was - both of us got to wear sweatpants as part of our costumes. Comfort and style!

And lastly, Peter spent his waking hours trying to summon all objects near and far to his mouth. I just tried to post a great video of this but for some reason it's not working. I'll leave you with 2 great Peter photos from this past weekend. In a few days: Chachiween! Can you guess what the boys' costumes will be?


Babies Everywhere

Just a couple of quick congratulatory wishes to some friends of Chachi Milk on additions to their families.

Our good friends Mike and Erin, along with their daughter Maeve, welcomed new baby boy Wyatt Michael (9 lbs., 9 oz.!) on 10/23!

Additionally, our pals Ben and Angela have welcomed not one, but two new babies into their lives - Emmet Paul and Joseph Stanley (about 15 total lbs. of kid!) a couple of weeks ago. To see their exploits, visit http://www.stuckourfootinit.blogspot.com/.

Congrats friends! We leave you with a photo of Vincent's celebratory baby dance.


Pirate Party!

What better way to celebrate a 3 year old's birthday than to glorify seafaring thieves! Well, that's just what we did. We went all out with the centerpiece, the inflatable swords, the tattoos, the invitation written in piratese, ("Vincent's 3aaaarrrd Birthday")...the whole bit. He even received an original piece of pirate art for his room thanks to Auntie Kate! Thanks to Mom-Mom and Grampa for hosting and for those who came from near or distant lands (Long Island! Ft. Lauderdale! Phoenixville!) delivering booty. Vincent is still trying to figure out what to play with next.


Vincent is 3!

We can't even believe it. I know it's a cliche but it's true. You can't believe how fast three years can pass. We got him his first real guitar. See his introspective indie pop pose above? He's a natural.

I thought I'd finish this post with a small batch of Vincent images from the past 3 years.


Teeth, Fever, and Sickups

Boy did we feel like we earned more parent merit badges this weekend.

On Friday night when I got home from work, I picked up my smiling, drooling younger son only to have him promptly projectile spit-up down the front of me. (WARNING: THIS NEXT PART IS GROSS.) This included a few drips directly into my kisser. I don't gross out that easily with stuff like this and this time was no different. It's just that everyone else I told reacted like this:


Vincent and Rosalie thought it was hilarious.

Vincent came down with a fever on Saturday afternoon (DAMN YOU PRESCHOOL!!!!). He slumped on the couch under 2 blankets and watched "Andy" (Annie -ed.). It stuck with him through Sunday and by bedtime was pretty high. He too joined the Upchuck Express which if you're keeping count, makes 2 kids, 2 throw-ups. He hadn't ever been that sick before so it was new for all of us. The fever broke overnight and after a few touch & go moments Monday morning, he's doing fine. Good thing we don't have a weight check this week. I don't think toast and watered-down grapefruit soda have a lot of calories.

Not to be outdone, Peter cut not one - but TWO teeth this weekend. Not surprisingly, he doesn't seem too phased by it either. "Teeth? Oh - these things busting through my super sensitive baby gums? No biggie."



It's all coming back again. Our little 5 month old is starting to teethe. He's even got the accompanying fever today. Other than that, he's been pretty upbeat about it..... Rosalie just chimed in with a "Hm. Easy for you to say." She also reminded me of his day of rage at Mom-Mom's yesterday.

He seemed upbeat to me.

Since the editors of Chachi Milk are so fond of lists, I figured I'd provide you with a list of things Peter has tried to put into his mouth over the past week.

1.) His feet

2.) My nose

3.) Numerous spoons (He kind of grabs hold of it while eating and locks on.)

4.) A beer bottle (Not mine. I swear. It was Vincent's.)

5.) At least eight different blankets (He LOVES chewing on blankets.)

6.) Fingers, knuckes and the like

7.) Other peoples fingers, knuckles and the like

8.) Straps and buckles (on toys, his car seat)

9.) An ice cream soda glass (Mommy got it a little too close.)

10.) His clothes (You get that onesie too close for a split second and CHOMP.)

11.) The chain I wear around my neck

12.) Mommy's hair

13.) Plush toys

14.) Vincent's nose

15.) Any and all cheeks (On people's faces, Kevin).

I could go on. I know, I know - we have teethers. They get equal teeth time. The list above comprises the objects he goes for if said teething ring is unavailable. The best part is that he dives at everything with both hands extended, mouth agape. There's no mixed intentions here. He wants to grab that object, pull it toward his mouth and bite down. You gotta love a kid that knows what he wants.

P.S. - Through his publicist, Peter would to add that, "Yes, we are keeping the Made in China stuff in mind. No lead paint has been consumed in the making of this blog."


CSI: Feline Unit

10:30PM: The call comes in. Mother-in-law. She's leaving work and hears "meowing" coming from her car. She just loaded the back with laundry from her business and knows it couldn't be in the car itself. That leaves one place - inside the guts of the car. Engine block, wheel well, carborator (can something actually be stuck in a carborator? Did I even spell it correctly?) She'll call back.

10:55PM: She arrives in front of our house. She's as frazzled as I've ever seen her. Sweating, nearly shaking.

Mother-in-law (MOL) "I...I'm just so freaked right now. I feel so bad for this thing. I don't know where it is."

Me: Do you still hear it?

MOL: Not in a while.

Me: Go ahead inside and I'll check it out.

11:00 PM: I've searched the outside of the car with a dimming flashlight and found nothing. I fished around the back hatch, looked under the seats, dashboard, elbow-rest storage compartment....nada. I hear nothing. I see nothing. I know what I've got to do.

Open the hood.

11:03 PM: I can't find the friggin' hood release. I mean, really. How hard could it be? They're usually in the same place on every car.

11:05 PM: I'm sitting in the car, under the dome light reading the manual for a 2006 Nissan Murano, trying to find "Page 3-9" to uncover The Secret of the Hood Release. I haven't drunk nearly enough for this.

11:07 PM: I find the hood release but just before I go to pull it...."Meow." Then again, "Meow." I hear a cat. This isn't a weird car sound or air conditioner making a noise that my mother-in-law interprets as catlike thus getting nervous. This is a cat. 100% positive.


11:09 PM: I'm actually shaking a little. Just a little. I'm thinking that once I pop this hood 1 of 2 things will happen:

1.) A cat will spring out.

2.) A dismembered cat will be struggling for its life. I totally can't handle this one.

Then I reason with myself. If this cat were hurt, I'd know it, right? It would be screaming or something. Do cats scream? I would smell hair if it was burnt, right?

11:11PM: I pop the hood. I fish underneath the hood for the 2nd release (for Christ's sake...) and catch it. I slowly open it up from the side and....

NOTHING. I shine my flashlight everywhere I can possibly shine it. I don't hear or see anything. Did it escape? Is it sleeping? Surely the sound of the hood opening and my general incompetence at motor vehicular operational techniques (not to mention my constant "What the...s and "Oh sh*ts") would've awakened the thing.

11:15 PM: I go inside with the news. Rose grabs another flashlight (Vincent's firetruck light) and heads out with me. Same results. She's on the ground deducing that it's probably in the plastic overhang that extends from the bottom of the bumper - a place no flashlight or human can go without the assistance of a mechanic's lift. At this point, we still don't hear the cat. My mother-in-law suggests starting the car.

11:18PM: I start the car. I immediately see my wife nodding her head outside and pointing at the bumper. We both hear it. She hypothesizes that it's warm and comfy and most likely resting in there until awakened by the engine - thus the meowing.

11:25 PM: After 7 minutes of the three of us trying to find an alternative...in the Yellow Pages - All-night automobile cat-removal? Fire department (I quashed this after 1.7 seconds)? SPCA? Father-in-law? My mother-in-law decides to leave the car at our house overnight because she can't drive it home. She'll take it to the dealer in the morning.

To make a long story anticlamactically short, the dealer's 1st service guy refused to put the car on the lift saying he "didn't want to get bitten by some damn cat." The 2nd service guy looked for "the usual fried kitten found in situations like these" but luckily didn't find anything. The little thing probably snuck out in the middle of the night to find a nice comfortable 2008 Escalade to creep into.

Epilogue: Vincent, Peter and I were outside playing this morning and we saw an unfamiliar cat pop into our neighbor's garage. I actually thought I saw the thing wink at me. Oddly enough, it actually whispered across the lawn, "Psst. How hard can it be to find a hood release?"


"Daddy wants to watch his special baseball game."

At the risk of turning this blog into a Phillies blog, let me continue with my exuberance over the fact that our hometown club is headed to the playoffs. The last time this happened, I was drinking Red Dog in Steve Berger's basement.

When they clinched this time, I was drinking water and nervously eating sunflower seeds while Vincent played with puzzles and Rose tried to help Peter through another bout with his unborn teeth. The moment Myers got the 3rd out and Harry Kalas almost erupted into tears, I yelled something unintelligible and kissed the other three very patient members of my family. Vincent followed suit and started yelling "YAAAY PHILLEEEEEZ" and I think Peter even starting screaming as well. His may have been teeth-related, but we'll just say it was his own little "M.V.P." chant for his idol, Jimmy Rollins. I know - he's only 5 months old and already has an idol. Weird. I told Rose that I should've popped open a beer and sprayed it all over the room but that probably would've been inappropriate.

Still - I feel a little bad that the boys had to endure me watching an entire game without the interruption of The Wizard of Oz, Mary Poppins, Barney Goes to the Zoo or Little Bear. I appreciate it, fellas. Take solace in the fact that the games in the Division Series are either at 3pm or 10pm. You can also feel good that your Daddy's complaining days are over.

Go Phils.