Dear Holly: I Think of You as a Pink Kitty

16 weeks.

Dear Holly: I Think of You as a Pink Kitty

Dear Holly,

You were born to parents who have an olive complexion, yet you undeniably are the color pink, in comparison to us. I like that. It makes sense to me that a baby girl as feminine as you are would be colored accordingly.

And also from the beginning, you’ve had mannerisms that remind me of a kitten.

For example, you’re not much of a crier. When you do cry though, it just sounds more like a little kitten meowing for someone to hold it.

Whenever you play, you are just like a little kitten toying with a ball of yarn, when you see anything you can reach in front of you.

In a complete coincidence, the backpack Mommy pick out for you for daycare features right there on the front of it… you guessed it- a pink kitty!

I should also point out that during these past couple of weeks, you have been transitioning into using your “stand up play center”. Really, you’re still a little too young to be in it.

However, Mommy and I have noticed that despite you not quite having the cognitive skills mastered just yet, your muscles are strong enough to support you.

You are so eager to prove yourself to us. And the talking you do…

There is so much on your mind! Whatever you are trying to tell Mommy and me through all your “goo-goo” language, it sure sounds exciting as well as urgent.

You are simply happy to be alive, that’s for sure.

So despite the chaotic schedule our family has in the midst of Mommy and me both having full-time jobs (and me having a 2nd job of blogging and vlogging) and you and your brother being away all day at school, it is such a blessing to come home and see our precious pink little baby girl and her alien-loving big brother.

Love,

Daddy

Dear Holly: I Think of You as a Pink KittyDear Holly: I Think of You as a Pink Kitty

Dear Jack: Your Possible New Part-Time Pet Named Whiskers (or Oliver?)

5 years.

Dear Jack,

Dear Jack: Your Possible New Part-Time Pet Named Whiskers (or Oliver?)

Last weekend while we were in Alabama visiting my side of the family for Thanksgiving weekend, Mommy and I went on our usual 2 mile morning walk that we always do when we go there.

As we were half way through our route, a little black kitty started following us; desperately meowing as if to say, “Won’t somebody take care of me? I’m so hungry. I don’t have anyone.”

I kneeled down and petted the cat, then we continued on our walk. It followed us briefly, but then couldn’t keep up.

Fifteen minutes later, as Mommy and I rounded back down that road, the little black kitty was waiting for us.

We didn’t slow down, as we assumed there was a good chance it actually lived on that road. But this time, the cat kept its speed; even though we were ignoring it the whole way back.

Once we arrived back at Nonna and Papa’s house, we soon realized the difficulty of even trying to feed the kitten; as your grandparents don’t have any meat; much less, cat food, in their house.

So Mommy suggested we beat an egg, and serve it in a bowl to the kitten. It worked.

It was obvious the cat was in great need of nutrition. Throughout the day, I cut some slices of cheese I found in the refrigerator and feed it to the kitty.

To everyone’s surprise, we woke up and the little black kitten was still there; asleep on the back porch where we had fed it the eggs and cheese.

After all, he apparently had nowhere else to be or to go.

For the record, we did attempt to feed the kitten some of our food, which is vegan and vegetarian, but the cat was uninterested; after all, felines are carnivores, not omnivores.

So Nonna had me run in to the local grocery store and buy some official cat food.

His name, according to you, is Whiskers.

However, Nana likes the name Oliver; and she, along with Papa, will be the ones actually taking care of him.

And yes, it is a him; as seen in my new web series, Uncle Nick’s Enchanted Forest. Last night as we were watching the 3rd webisode, you announced, “Hey Daddy, look… I can see his nugget pouch!”

(Previously you had asked me how I knew he was a boy cat, so I explained that his “nugget pouch” under his tail was how I could tell.)

“Kitty,” as he is known on my show, apparently will be a by-default regular supporting cast member (like Gunther on Friends).

In addition to being part of the main plotline of the “Freddie the Fox” webisode, he also is undeniably present in the opening montage of my new show.

I never intended for him to be part of the show, but he just kept showing up during filming, so I wrote him into the script.

You and your cousin Calla definitely enjoyed having him around this past weekend. If he sticks around Nonna and Papa’s place, he just might end up being your part-time pet each time we visit there.

Love,

Daddy

Being Your Own Life Coach

Some people hire life coaches; the rest of us keep that kind of stuff in the closet, serving as our own life coaches, with a little help from the model citizen.

What is a model?  My definition: the best case scenario.  Something we’re least likely to exactly duplicate, yet it’s a poster we hang up in the back of our mind to inspire us, whether it’s of a person or simply an abstract idea.

And in the process of possibly never reaching that near-impossible goal, the irony is that we likely become the model for someone else.  And I must strip away any emotion or sentimentality that may try to attach itself to this idea.  I must erase any memory of some lame e-mail forward I received in 2001 that said, “To the world, you may not be anyone.  But to one person, you may be the world,” complete with a picture of a glossy, sparkly kitten with angel wings.

Simply put, I have “life models” that I keep track of.  I always have.

The guy friends I wanted to be like in college, the ones that appeared confident, yet not cocky, the ones that were gentlemen, not agenda-minded tools, those people life models to me several years ago.  While holding true to myself, I took special notice of their demeanor, behavior, and actions and made then my own.

And it worked.  Without directly knowing it, they helped shape me into the guy I needed to become, the guy that would later be able to captivate the attention and affection of the girl that previously I wouldn’t have been able to; that being my wife, of course.

By keeping watch of several life models (as I still continue to do, especially now specifically of other young fathers) I in turn become a better person.  Because I surely don’t mature and advance in life simply by my own direction.

Who are these life models I collect in my mind?  To anyone else, they appear as average-looking people with no attention-grabbing talents or obvious life accomplishments.  But when I think of them, as they serve as motivation to get me through any major or mundane task, I think to myself, “If they can do it, so can I”.