On Father’s Day

  I used to give lip service on Fathers Day. Cards were sent and thanks was given and the love was spread around as abundantly and efficiently as I could spread it. But I’m not sure I really meant it. And then I became a Dad and realized that my life was no longer about… Read More »

The Storks are Nesting

I just turned 39 and I may have begun nesting. I suppose this typically happens before the child is born but maybe since having him I’ve become aware of what world I want him to be raised in. That world is one that is away from the humans. It has goats and green things and… Read More »

Though We May Not Share Blood

Since his birth in 2010, I’ve wondered when we would start seeing our traits in him. Without the blood bond biological children share with their parents I’ve been anxious to see us in him in ways that must be distinctly learned.  Along those lines, I’ve also been anxious to uncover the surprises we will find… Read More »

Watching the Wheels in Motion

“In our personal lives, also, we journey from ignorance to knowledge. Our individual growth reflects the advancement of the species.” Carl Sagan Watching Judah’s brain develop is fascinating. All those cliches about learning something new every day and growing before your eyes are tired and true but are overused for a reason. They are correct.… Read More »

We Tried to Sell Our College

It’s been twenty years since I was a college student and I returned this past weekend as an alumni to preach the airline life. These guys on campus now are kids! Many born after I started college. Not only could I be their father… I could be the father to their older siblings. But, while… Read More »

Eight Years Ago We Wed – Since Then, I Became an Adult

For years now (more than a decade of them) a friend and I have been playing the “who’s the first to become an adult game”. It started in college and was simply a game that would define the moment when you became a man. You entered adulthood when you bought frames for your posters or purchased a box spring for your mattress were common life changing events of the time.

It’s My Potty, You Can Cry If You Want To

“The rules are pretty simple… Tell me when you have to go potty and we will go potty. Got it?”
I say this at 8am feeling confident I’m gonna crank out potty training today. Boot camp style. Let’s do this.

I ask him again if he understands the rules.
“Yeah.” He says.
He says “yeah” to pretty much everything these days.

To Goa With Love

With the luxury of non revenue travel also comes the joy of spontaneous adventure. Our trip to India would begin with either a flight from Newark into Delhi or Mumbai. We had tentatively prepared an itinerary around Delhi being our entry point but when that flight was full and we were able to score the… Read More »

My Feet Were Fish Food

I sat with my bare feet dangling into a tank training a few hundred recently imported Chinese flesh eating fish to not only welcome my feet but to think the crust buildup from walking the streets of Mumbai is down right delicious. The “Dr. Fish Foot Treatment” at The Bambooo House (three o’s) is temporarily… Read More »

Everyday… it’s something new

All those stories about them learning something new everyday… are true. A few days ago we taught Judah to throw and chase a soccer ball. Now he is kicking it around like a pro. And looks much more natural at it than I ever did after five scoreless years playing soccer. In the 80’s, and… Read More »

Six Pound Challenge – Failed!

In high school… I could eat! I was a growing boy. I was always hungry and never gained weight. I was invincible. Or so I thought. There was (maybe still is) a restaurant in Tampa that offered a six pound challenge. Ninetysix ounces of beef for the willing. Eat it all and the table eats for free. I rolled in there with my family like owned the place. I was so confident I even took a date! The whole family gathered around to watch… they ordered what they wanted because surely we’d all be eating for free.

Breakfast Flashcards

Breakfast today… oatmeal with wheat toast and a cup of milk mixed with some Sesame Street Beginner Words flashcards. For the record, I stacked the deck with the half he knows already… and yes, if you look quickly you will notice that I call Ernie, Bert. I’m still getting used to this.

Get Your Sticky Fingers Off My Tablet!

Spending money on myself has a whole new meaning now that there is a child in tow. When I buy myself a toy, I like to think that it will also have an educational use for him. Not always the case… as in Call of Duty, Modern Warfare 3. When I bought the Kindle Fire… Read More »

He is Chasing Planes Around Already

Judah has the aviation bug… already he has begun chasing planes around. I’ve been doing it for as long as I can remember. Specifically, it may have started when I was single digits sitting in my fathers office watching people fly RC airplanes in a field across the street. The obsession culminated during many summers at Space Camp not learning about poison ivy like most kids.
It’s a common question in the cockpit during a round of self loathing. “Are you going to encourage your kids to work for the airlines?”

Tributes to my Grandfather Tom – updated

“Breakfast Bonus” “Tom McEwen, former Tribune sports editor and columnist, dies at 88″ TBO.com VIDEOS “Remembering Tom McEwen” “Eulogies at Tom McEwen Funeral” ARCTICLES June 11th, 2011 “Farewell, our friend” TBO.com “Sports luminaries, Tampa community turn out for Tom McEwen’s funeral” Tampabay.com “McEwen remembered for loyalty, friendship and laughter” TBO.com June 10th, 2011 “Tom McEwen… Read More »

Learning to use a straw

And drink without using his hands! We made the progression from bottle to sippy cup and now on to straws and then to lidless vessles of staining beverages. Judah seems to like using his teeth as fingers as he realizes he has a third hand.

Pacita Jugo Ladd… “Nana”

My Nana was many things to me over the years. She was a grandmother and a babysitter. She was a mentor and an advisor. She was a resource for travel tips and great grandmother to our son. Through it all, and especially as I grew mature enough to realize it, she was a friend. Our conversations, though split by a fifty year spread, were always casual but meaningful. She would offer me suggestions on how to live my life and how to raise Judah and do so as a peer… never with an air of authority. She kept that spicy Filipino side suppressed until necessary to quickly end a conversation. And believe me, should could pull out the big guns if need be!