May 30, 2010

Miloh's 1st quarter of his first year in numbers.

I've always had a thing for numbers, which is why I do these infographics, but I haven't taken a math class since the second day of senior year of high school. At the time I was given a small math problem and here it is: Kenny can get college credit for a math class or he can drop the class and go home early because it's his last class of the day.

I chose wisely. And all my teachers said I would need math in my later life. It can be argued that I used it all the time in fact in college I wrote a paper on how photography is math in order to get out of my math credits (I had a ton of science credits, including astrophysics so it wasn't like I was a slacker.) But really the teachers were wrong...I don't need to use math because I have a sister who is  Statistics and Math Professor at Ohio State University. If I have a math question she's only 10 digits away (she would probably want me to point out that it's actually 11 digits because of the 1)

So when I wanted to come up with some stats for Miloh's Q1 of Year One she helped me in a way this is a bit of a guest post from her. I should note that I added some stats of my own, based on equations she gave me, but if any percentage is wrong here it's me that got it wrong not her.

click to enlarge

May 27, 2010

Gear Thursday: Real Nappies Diaper Review

A bit ago we made the switch to cloth diapers...I forget when exactly but if you really care you can probably check out my infographics because I mention it on one of those.

Any way when we made the switch I learned a few things about cloth diapers:
  • They are easier to use than you'd think.
  • You wind up touching a lot of pee (because you have to get the liner out of the cover.)
  • The first few times you experience poo in a cloth diaper you will want to throw it away.
  • You won't throw it away because they are expensive - upfront cost, but are cheaper in the long run.
  • You will do a shitload of laundry...not sure if that's a pun but if it is then the pun is intended.
  • The one size fits all cloth diapers are bullshit (see above re: pun)
  • There are a shitload of different kinds of cloth diapers (see above re: pun.)
  • If you don't have a good diaper pail bag the room will smell craptastic very soon (see above re: pun)
  • It's obnoxious to basically make the same pun over and over again.
With all that being said we're glad we made the switch. Like I said in my crappy list they are easy to use. The learning curve is small.

When we were looking at starting the cloth diapers we found that a lot of so called "one size fits all" diapers didn't fit all sizes. They'll have snaps, straps, velcro or some shit to fit snugly but you will inevitably get a leak.

A long, long time ago I was contacted by Real Nappies to do a review of their diapers so since we were ready I took them up on the offer. I was sent an Infant Size Intro Pack which includes a diaper, diaper cover and a liner.

When I first opened the pack I was a little worried...they looked a little old school because they are the pre-fold style. Basically that means they have one of those flat diapers that you fold and put in a cover.

We set out to try them on Miloh. Following the instructions for a boy we folded the diaper. There are different folds for boy or girl for obvious reasons. There are videos on how to fold correctly...I didn't feel the need to watch them because it seemed easy enough, and I think it was. (boy video. girl video)

After folding you tuck the diaper in the cover, put the cover on and wait for your kid to pee. You can do things while waiting. Things like: tummy time, feed a bottle, read a book (to your baby or in another room by yourself), put your baby to sleep, make brownies and send them to me, or many other things.

Once that kid of yours is ready to be changed you get ready to touch pee...this happens with all cloth. With the Real Nappies you take the diaper out of the cover and slap a new one in and start the whole process over until you get your kid going in the toilet.

I think they say you can use covers 4 times before washing. That's actually really nice. It cuts down on washing and cuts cost because the diapers are relatively inexpensive.

All in all we were happy with how the diaper worked. It was way easier than we thought it would be, fit well and didn't leak.

The only negative was that Miloh got really crabby when he peed because these aren't as wicking as disposables and some cloths we've tried. But I should mention it was the first cloth he tried so he was getting used to non-disposables. Also they say that as you wash the diaper part they get more wicky and such. And most importantly one of the benefits of cloth diapers is the kid knows it peed...this awareness helps toilet training.

All in all I think that Real Nappies are a good thing to check out...they seem quite affordable to the competition because of the multi-use cover and they aren't to hard to figure out.

Learn more on the Real Nappies site or check them out on Amazon.

In case you're a cloth diaper freak I'll have another review in a few weeks...

May 23, 2010

New look and my blog was reviewed

As you can see my blog has a new look to it. I had to change it up because somehow my code broke (maybe I tweaked something, maybe blogger did) and comments weren't showing up correctly...and since I can't write/fix code and can only tweak it I had to start from scratch.

If you've been here a lot in the last 18 hours you would have seen many background color changes. It started darker like my other site and flip-flopped about 20 times as I struggle with my personality vs, what people were used to vs 50% of the adults in my house not really liking the I give you a white washed wood panel look... UPDATE: I already changed back to the darker look...

Anyway you're probably stuck with this look unless I tweak the background 1000 times more...but it will basically stay like this for a bit because I like the way the posts look in this template.

Not sure why I feel I have to justify the change, not sure how much people will care but that's who I am.

Also my site was reviewed by Chris over at Stay at Home Dad in Lansing...if you come here a lot you probably know what's up here but you can check out what he says here.

May 19, 2010

You were wrong Mr. Smith...boys do cry

yeah I'm re-using a pic but it works so well
Here's a little story that has laughter, a hell of a lot of tears and a happy ending. It's basically like Shrek and should therefore be picked up by Pixar. If you are from there please contact me so we can work together.

The story is about how we got putting Miloh to sleep.

It starts with with an earlier post called Sweet Child O Mine. A post that talks about how I started going insane while trying to put him to sleep when he was a month old.

Once we got over that hump it was smooth sailing. With the help of a twitter mom (thanks Mae) we came up with a great routine of bath, bottle then sleep, while we switched who put him to sleep every other night.

Then something would happen...we'd bath him, give him the bottle, comfort him until a bit sleepy and then put him in his bed. The second the he hit the mattress he would start wasn't fun...not at all.

Staci and I had theories...mine was teething while Staci thought some sickness because his temp was a bit high.

He took a trip to the doctor...Staci brought him because he isn't able to drive yet. The doctor said he was in good health and that while he was about to start cutting a tooth it probably wasn't something he was feeling yet.

She did say that if we wanted to try Cry it Out we could...she had done it with both her kids and it worked quite well. I should mention that Staci had read a lot on sleep training. When Miloh got all fussy we started to try extinction (which just doesn't sound too good.)

The doc said that if we wanted to do Cry it Out it was good we brought him in because we knew he was healthy so we would know he wasn't crying because of a fever etc.

Staci called me and said she wanted to try it...then I told a co-worker who said when she did it she was actually out of town while her husband did she didn't have to worry.

So when I got home I told Staci and she actually said the doc suggested she leave the house...basically what I get out of those suggestions is that basically people think men are callus assholes who don't care if their kids wail for an hour or more. I bet some of these a-hole dads would even make up songs about their kid crying.

Well that night came. I went through our routine and while getting him ready for his bath I sang to him to comfort him. I sang 'Who's gonna cry it out, tonight' in the tune of The Cars' Drive. He seemed to enjoy it quite a bit. After bath and bottle Staci left for Walgreens to pick up some things.

Then I sang him another song to the tune of 'If I only had a Brain.' I had to make up all but the chorus because I forget the words. Once he was sleepy I put him down and left the room...the wailing did the texting.

Staci texted me to ask what was going answer was Miloh was crying. I also asked her to pick me up some Lemonheads and if they were doing the 3 for $3 sale some Mike and Ike's and Jujyfruits also...they were not having the sale.

Then I hopped on Twitter where I got a lot of support from's also where I may have mentioned that he looked straight into the video monitor and made the slit my throat motion with his hand...that was a lie and I apologize to those I mislead.

More texts came from Staci...the answer was still he was crying...I might have also said he was knitting...that was a lie and I apologize to Staci for misleading her.

After 50 minutes he was asleep...I told Staci and she came home.

It was a tough 50 minutes...but I really felt it was going to be good for him so I turned up the TV and rode it out.

The next night we did a similar routine...this time he was asleep in 13 minutes.

On the third night I was out so Staci put him to sleep...he slept in 10 minutes.

And on the fourth night he went right to sleep.

A lot of people might think it is cruel to do Cry it Out...but for every reason they think it's screwing up Miloh I can probably find a reason their method of sleep is screwing up their kid. I think most sleep methods are valid and have an equal opportunity to screw up a baby as it does to make it's whole parenting and figuring what works for you and your child that matters

I've already had folks ask, in a nice way, if I thought that Miloh felt we abandoned him. I don't believe he does, because we haven't. When he wakes in the middle of the night for a bottle we are up and he gets what he needs. In fact I stubbed my toes almost every night for a week running to get him a bottle (there was a swing in the way and I was too sleepy to move it.) I think he knows the difference because he's not in the same frame of mind when he's sleep as when he needs a bottle, changed diaper or to just play. And he's one happy kid.

It pretty much worked well for us...there was a little set back when we took him out of his sleep sack and put him in footy pajamas. We did this because he was pulling the bottom of the sack over his head in an effort to get his foot in his mouth. Now he sleeps better knowing he can get it in his mouth...but he was a little off his game getting used to his new freedom.

Moral of the story is do what you think works best for you as far as sleep. And if you try Cry it Out go to your doctor first to make sure your baby is healthy before doing it...and after the days of crying it out you can Enjoy the Silence.

P.S. two allusions to 80s songs...not too bad.

May 14, 2010

Response to a comment about breastfeeding

Since I'm a dude and unable to produce milk from I never thought I woul have to defend the reason we formula feed instead of breast feed. But I received a comment on a recent post so I thought I would talk about it here.

I'll get to the why we don't later but I'll start off on a tangent.

First off I don't want to alienate the person who asked the comment because they say they are a reader and I'm cool with anyone stopping by. But I can't call the person out anyway because the comment was anonymous...and here is where I go into a little bit of a rant, and if you follow me on twitter you know I'm a fan of the rant.

I'm assuming the comment was anonymous on purpose. Perhaps the person is a friend or someone I follow on twitter. Maybe they didn't want to ruin that relationship by coming out and saying it. I'm  a big boy and can handle criticism.

Anonymous comments are never things like "Where did you get that cool toy?" they are usually a bit trolly. And the reason I bring up trolly, and again while I'm probably offending I'm not trying to, is because the comment was on a photo of Miloh and I. It would have been better placed on my review of a bottle or my week in numbers because I mention formula on those.

Now to the comment and my reply. The comment:
I have really enjoyed reading your blog! Miloh is adorable. It is great that you and your wife are really trying to be environmentally friendly and purchase as many "natural" products as you can. I am just curious to know why he isn't being breastfed? Did he try it and it wasn't working out? As you know breastmilk is the most natural food you could ever give your baby. It just seems a little contradictory to buy organic, natural items for the baby, yet feed him one of the most chemically processed horrible foods out there. Wearing an organic onesie isn't going to make any difference in his life (or yours), but feeding him breastmilk would. Just curious to know your stance on this!
My response:
First off is it really anyone's business? I think not, especially because this is a dad blog, but I think if it was a mom blog I'd feel the same, however maybe I would have addressed it earlier. But anyone who reads mom blogs knows that it's a hugely emotional issue for some moms and I think it's rude when people on either side tell the other that they are doing something wrong.

I won't even get into anything about Staci because that stuff is personal and there are emotions for any woman who is struggling with breastfeeding for any reason.

But on to Miloh...he wouldn't take the boob. Now one might ask why we didn't keep trying to get him to latch. One reason is because he was pretty freaking jaundice at birth. So we had to decide have him basically not eat which would lead to worse jaundice, and that can lead to brain damage or other complications, or have him take the bottle.

With brain damage vs. bottle we pick the, hopefully, obvious choice of bottle.

Then we had to decide what we would go with moving forward...and again I don't feel it appropriate for me to go into the goings on there...but we stuck with bottle. It was working for him and his jaundice went away. He was in great health and he and we were happy.

Part of the comment was about it being best for him developmentally. We read all that, heard all that...if anyone is in the Montessori community you know that folks there are a wealth of info about breastfeeding (not sure why it kind of goes hand in hand.)

I wasn't breastfed...I'm not sure all the details as I was very young at the time but I wouldn't take and/or I couldn't handle the milk. And i'm not sure if there is a correlation but I'm allergic to milk and was from day one 9or two.) Maybe for whatever reason it wasn't for me as a newborn it wasn't for Miloh.

As for any adverse affects of me not being breast fed I'd say there are none (I'm looking at benefits on babycenter.) I'm in good health, have never had respiratory or ear probs. Aside from milk and egg albunem I have no allergies, I'm not obese but could stand to lose 8 pounds. And, although I don't like saying it, I'm a bit above average intelligence. So I'm not worried for Miloh.

About it being contradictory to buy non-processed foods and organic food and clothes but feeding him super processed formula that is hard to answer. Mostly because I have been a vegetarian for over 20 years and I prefer organic food or clothes...but if you knew me you'd also know that I love pure crap food. If I could eat nothing but french fries and falafel I would. I love me some Twix bars, although I would much prefer them if they were dark chocolate. I always buy 3 large boxes of Mike & Ikes, Lemonheads etc when Walgreens has the 3 for $3 sale.

If everything being equal I'd choose an organic shirt over a regular shirt...but if that organic shirt is ugly I'd sure as hell pick the regular one. I do buy organic foods but stick to the list of the most pesticide laden ones.

You see when it comes to the organic/healthy thing I'm a riddle wrapped in an enigma. I gets even more complicated when it comes to my uber-close to vegan-ness. I don't eat cheese EVER, and don't drink milk or eat eggs...but make me a brownie with eggs and milk and I will eat that thing up...put mayo in there and I'll spit it out on you.

Is his organic onesie going to change his life? It absolutely will...that's because I will chose options of organic stuff at times and he will be around it. Then when he's shopping for clothes he may buy more organic. Just because of the way we feed him he may eat less processed and be more vegan.

But if he want's to open a butcher shop or work in the Hostess fruit pie plant I'd be okay with that. And I'm sure if he did he'd be around people that when they have children decide to breastfeed them...which could be seen as contradictory too...but we all kind of do what is best for us, right?

So whoever wrote the comment I hope that answers your question...feel free to reply (anonymously or not.) But I want everyone to know that I don't want the comments on this post to become a back and forth of the breastfeeding camps and I will shut down/delete comments if that happens.

P.S. I'm really bummed that Hostess fruit pies are made with animal shortening...those things ROCKED.

An I took some photos Friday

I set these shots up to take some pics of Miloh for his grandmothers, as a Mother's Day present. He had just drooled all over himself, but I was only planning on getting a close up of his face, then I widened the crop for some.

May 13, 2010

A little spill

I don't know why but I did't think he'd be able to tip over the water.

Gear Thursday: Coddlelife Bottles with Peristaltic Anti-colic Nipple

This will probably be my only post in which I use the word nipple...

Coddlelife sent me a couple bottles and a silicone wrap to review. Once I received it I realized it's really hard to review know because I don't use one. But I can talk about what I think Miloh's thoughts would be.

I think they would be good...he took to the nipple right away. I was wondering because the design is really breastfeeding friendly and he isn't a fan of the boob...but he seemed to dig it. He had no problems drinking and didn't seem gassier than usual. I wasn't expecting he would be since it's an anti-colic design.
I tried two different bottles out; the 8 oz. borosilicate glass bottle and the 8 oz. Polypropylene Bottle (BPA free.) I liked both and especially liked the glass one because I did glass over plastic and it was super light. They have a silicone wrap to go over the glass one so it doesn't slip. The plastic one was nice too...I like the squat size...and it's BPA free.

As for the nipple it is pretty has a tube going down it that acts as a venting system which can help prevent colic. The actual nipple part is peristalticso it fits and stretches to the baby mouth and it has little dots on it to stimulate the baby's senses.

They also have a new feature on some of the nipples which is a cross cut opening...they say it's good for breast to bottle changes as it's closer to the way a boob works...not applicable to little dude, but still he was drinking.

All in all these are pretty nice and might be a good option especially if breastfeeding too. Get all the info at

Nipple count: 7 including this use and immature is it that I'm counting?

May 12, 2010

May 11, 2010

Adventures in floor bedding

A lot of folks have asked Staci and I questions about the floor bed. What it is exactly, when to do it, how to do it. I tried to answer them in a post I did a bit ago.

But the most asked question is what do you do if he rolls off. Our first answer was always that we didn't need to worry about it because he wouldn't roll for a while.

But in reality the answer is that the mattress is 4-5 inches tall and there is a rug under it so if he rolls off he'll be okay since it's not long like the carpet. Also if he was able to roll off he'd have the ability to be mobile and get to his back.

That's all in theory...on Mother's Day we were finally able to answer the question in practice.
We had just put him on his bed for a nap...then we talked about how we were happy that we figured out a nice routine from him and that we were working as a great team. We walked downstairs and heard a little giggle on the radio monitor. So we turned on the video monitor...there was his was empty.

We ran upstairs to find him about 3.5 feet from his bed and happy as he could be. We had only left him for 2 minutes...and we have no idea how he got like this. When he rolls over he rolls towards the wall...I had never seen him roll to his right (until later that day.)

I wish we somehow got the incident on video because I'm sure it would have been great.

Anyway the answer to "what happens if he rolls off?" is we run upstairs to find a happy baby.

May 7, 2010

Holy shit I've been interviewed

I'm trying to rank high on Google for a search of holy shit...anyway I was interviewed for the blog written by the fine folks at Modern can check it out here.

But while you're over there check out Modern Bird Studios, the studio behind the blog. This dude Gregg creates custom hand painted works of art from your photos. The paintings are on a thick oak composite so you can see the real wood grain, but you can customize it with any color combination you want.

UPDATE: they have a giveway right you should enter.

It's really awesome stuff and they offer a great way to get some custom one-of-a-kind art in your house.

May 4, 2010

My alien abduction theory...

I'll start by saying I believe in aliens. From what I've read about the new Stephen Hawking show I probably have a similar view. I wish I had seen the show but I have this little kid who's been stealing my time.

I don't think they are coming here and abducting us...because I agree that if they did it probably wouldn't be good.

But I do have a theory about abduction and it came to me the other day while changing Miloh.

You always here that they are abducted by human like figures at night. The abductee is placed on a table. They are often under lights and then they are prodded.

Well that's exactly the experience Miloh had the other night. His room was dark, a human like figure picked him up, placed him on a table, turned a bright light on, stuck a metal probe in his butt and then placed him back in his bed.

The human like figure was of course me. He had been fussy and puked earlier in the day so before I did his night feeding I tool his temperature. I turned the room light on because I wanted to make sure the thermometer was going where it needed to.

Maybe the alien abductions are just some kind of early memory...a memory that is skewed a bit because it was so early.

I'm not sure of my earliest memory. I have 3 that are early but I don't know the timing. One was a cake that was for my father's had cool little plastic boats on it. Another was my sister's mom made individual frosted cakes for all of my sisters friends...they got to decorate the cakes themselves. I remember my was crazy sloppy and had everything on it...that's probably because I am 5 years younger. My last early memory is my mom rented a film of Mighty Mouse comics for my friends to watch...let me repeat that, she rented a film like actual film we projected...I'm old.

You'll notice one thing that all my memories have in common...they are birthdays, but more importantly there was cake involved...I like cake. You'll also notice I don't remember my mom's b-days...that's probably because she was the one planning things wile my father did nothing for hers (I'm guessing.)

Back to the alien's just a theory but these are the things I think of.

May 3, 2010

Another guest post

I did a little guest post a bit ago for, the post is below the original pre-amble.

If you head to you can see a little guest post I wrote. It's about being a daddy blogger in the midst of a bunch of mommy bloggers.

The post is kicking off Tiffany's new site. It used to be called Feels Like Home but then some other blogger felt that she owned the name because she was thinking about to registering the name...even though really the name comes from a song. And I think it's pretty ridiculous that the other woman threatened a law suit because of this.

And that BS and some other twitter high school antics lead me to one of my greatest literary feats...a little rant on twitter.

The image is below, if you click on it you can read the whole goes from the bottom up. A little warning if you read it...there may be an f-bomb or 20...and now it's in the Library of Congress...awesome.

Here's the post from
When Tiffany asked me to do a guest post for her relaunch I thought cool..this will be awesome. Then I thought, wow this is gonna suck because I’m having total creative block.

So I used the wonderful world of the interwebs and asked twitter folks what I should write about. One of the responses I got back was from Tiffany herself asking “how about why a nice guy like you ever decided to get caught up with all the crazy ladies?” And as she’s the host and I like the question I figured I’d pick that.

Let’s start with the first part of the question. There is a huge assumption that I’m a nice guy. Maybe I’m a total creep…it’s the internet after all so how do you know if anyone is who they say they are? Maybe my daddy blog is pure fiction. I could be borrowing pics of a friend’s kid and making everything up as I go. In a way that would be pretty brilliant and pretty fun. I could write a book and get on Oprah…because we know she likes fake memoirs. As I write that out I kind of love the idea…but the thought of it being fiction is in itself pure fiction.

The real story about how I got caught up with a bunch of mommy can be answered two ways. One would be really boring, simple and analytic talking about the actual way I found myself in this place. The other could be more abstract about.

Here’s the boring version first, it was supposed to be short but I’m loquacious so it’s long…

I started my blog because when my awesome wife got pregnant I started putting my foot in my mouth immediately. First the day after she took the test I told her that it was weird that she was looking bloated already (she was only 4 days late.) I mention this kind of often, but I mention it because she was in fact bloated…it went away 2 days later. A couple days after that comment I told her that I thought her nausea was psychosomatic…I mean seriously how can you feel that bad right after she found out? Well I guess you can…and since I was the master of the gaff a friend told me it would be funny if I started a blog…so I did.

Then someone told me to list it on a baby blog site, and I found Top Baby Blogs. And the thing is that’s more of a mom blog site vs. a dad blog site. So now I had strangers coming to my blog and most were women.

As all that was going on I realized that my friends on twitter don’t probably didn’t want to hear about my, pre-kid (it’s what I called Miloh before he showed himself). So I set up a twitter account for the blog. Then little by little my tweets on my personal @stumblingmonk account got fewer while the @smonkyou ones got more frequent…and that’s basically the boring how found my self a dad among all these crazy moms.

If you want to blame someone you can probably blame fellow guest blogger Morgan from because she was one of the first non-real-life friends to comment on my blog and one of the first moms I connected with on twitter. You can also blame another guest blogger Mandy from for helping me gain mommy blog followers from a guest post I did on her blog.

Now for the non-boring version.

First I should say that I’m a bit of a reluctant blogger. Had my friend not mentioned it a few times I would have never started writing. Before I started writing I never really checked out blogs that were already out there. No mommy blogs and no daddy blogs. So I didn’t realize there were dad blog communities. And like I said Top Baby Blogs is predominately a mom blog deal that’s sort of where I fell.

In being reluctant I really didn’t put a lot of energy out there to promote my site…and I still don’t…so I kind of stay in the bubble I started in. It’s expanded a quite a bit and now even includes some guys. Although I’d guess that of my 500 twitter followers only about 20 are guys.

But then there is the question of why I feel comfortable with all the ladies? I guess my twitter/blog life pretty much mirrors my real life. I hate to say it but at first impression I’m not a huge fan of most guys. My dad is a total ass so that’s probably where a lot of it stems from. I’m getting over this a little bit as I’ve met some cool dads online recently.

I’ve always been friendlier with more girls than guys. Most of my roommates have been women and all of my girlfriends were women (well I guess that’s obvious.) Plus I got the awesome nickname of Kenny the Male Lesbian from all my lesbian friends in Chicago.

So really it’s a combination of my online personae matching the real me (which is a good thing), me being a little lazy in not promoting myself and really just being content and comfortable being a dude among women.

Maybe I can wear the title of Kenny the Male Mommy Blogger

Took awhile... Here's an infographic of MF's first year

I finished this about a year ago just for my personal use but thought I'd share it. It's a visualization of MF's first year in n...