Happy 8th Birthday, NHL!

IMGP1843 Today, NHL turns 8 years old.  In some ways, it seems like only yesterday that B leapt off the couch, ran to the bathroom and announced to me (when I ran after her to see what the problem was) that her water broke.  In other ways, it feels like NHL has been with us forever.  How is it that he can both be growing up so quickly before my eyes and yet my life before he was born seems so far away it might as well have been an alternate-dimension TechyDad?

In any event, today we celebrate NHL turning 8.  When he was a baby, he loved making everyone smile.  I particularly noticed that he liked getting the attention of women in stores.  He would look at them cutely, then look away and repeat his actions until he got their attention.  My son wasn’t even a year old and he was already a flirt!  (Is this a sign that I should be worried a few years down the road?)

When he was a toddler, he initially had trouble walking (due to low muscle tone and other issues), but made quick strides with therapy.  He was a social kid and very inquisitive.  He loved reading and computers.  In fact, I noticed that he had quite the knack for technology.  He would pick up how to work things, like the DVR remote, very quickly.  We finally had to move the DVR remote to a place he couldn’t reach because the DVR filled up with shows he decided to record.

As NHL got older and began attending school, his thirst for knowledge grew.  He would pick up on facts where ever he could find them.  I began seeing more and more of  myself in him for better and for worse.  At times, it would seem like he couldn’t stop talking, but I could sympathize.  I did the same thing when I was younger.  He likely has a million thoughts piling in his brain and no place for them to go.  We’ll need to get him a better outlet for this than random babbling.

Unfortunately, NHL had a rough 2nd grade.  He complained of not having friends and his teacher didn’t quite seem to know how best to work with him.  Sadly, a bullying incident forced us to pull NHL from school.

It wound up being a blessing in disguise, however, because NHL thrived in his new school.  He made friends and began wanting to learn again.  When school ended, he actually burst into tears thinking that Summer vacation meant he had to stop learning.  Now those are tears that every parent loves to see!  (So long as the child stops crying, like NHL did, when reassured that they can keep learning, of course.)

IMGP1853He had a blast during summer vacation going to the water park, crafting events, library time, and even just plain playing in the park.  He also mimicked young-me by becoming hooked on video games.  (Of course, my addiction was the Atari 2600, not the Nintendo DS.)

The upcoming year will be an interesting one.  How will NHL react to the third grade?  For me, third grade was a wonderful time.  My teacher realized that I should be in an advanced reading class.  This led to honors classes which led to AP and college level courses.  Will NHL’s third grade be as good for him?  I don’t know, but I can’t wait to see what comes next.

Server Moves, Birthday Parties, Exhaustion, and Hava Nagilla

On Saturday night, after the kids were in bed, I began moving TechyDad.com and TheAngelForever.com from our old host to our new host.  This meant first backing up all of the files from the old host’s servers.  (I usually keep backups locally, but they had gotten out of date.)  This alone took some time.  Then, I backed up the databases.  Finally, I restored the whole thing onto the new hosts’ server.  A connection string change (to point to the new database) and name server update later, and our websites were up and running.

If I make it sound like a quick job, however, it wasn’t.  I began work at around 9pm and went to bed at 1:30 am.  At this point, I had about 4 hours worth of file transfers to go.  Luckily, these weren’t essential files.  Had you been able to see TechyDad.com at this point, you might have noticed photos missing in blog posts or images missing from the sidebars.  Still, the blog posts would have been readable and WordPress would have functioned just fine.

Since I didn’t need to be present for this file transfer to run, I left my computer on and went to bed, falling asleep at about 2am.  At about 5am, I was woken up by B.  She wasn’t feeling good (horrible headache) and needed my help.  I got her some medicine and she went back to sleep.  Despite my exhaustion, however, I just couldn’t fall asleep.

I finally fell back to sleep around 6am only to be woken back up at 7am.  I laid in bed for as long as I could, but sleeping in was not an option.  We needed to get ready for NHL’s birthday party.

There were several moments during the party where I found myself unable to focus and/or dizzy.  Many times when I’d have liked to have snuck away for a “short” nap.  (Short meaning telling yourself only 5 minutes and then waking up 3 hours later.)  After the party was over, I felt the crash come hard.  Still, I pushed off exhaustion.

As I sit typing this, B is sitting with the boys, trying to get them to go to sleep.  I’m thinking that I really should process some of the photos from the party for a blog post.  I just can’t think straight enough, though.  Instead, here’s B’s post about the party.  (Mine will come later.)

I won’t leave you empty handed, though.  Thanks to a recent gift from Mimi to JSL, I think the Hava Nagilla will be sung quite a bit in our household:


Hopefully, by the time you read this, I’ll be well rested and coherent.  If I am, then hava nagilla (let us rejoice)!

Aloha Friday: Celebrations

Today is my hundredth Aloha Friday post.  This is a cause for a celebration.  An even better cause for celebration, though, is that on Sunday we’ll have NHL’s 8th birthday party.  Also, on Wednesday, NHL will actually turn 8.  Furthermore, later this month, B and I will do something we haven’t done in our 8 years of being parents: Have a vacation with just the two of us.

My 100th Aloha Friday question is: What types of celebrations have you had recently or will you be having soon?

Thanks to Kailani at An Island Life for starting this fun for Friday. Please be sure to head over to her blog to say hello and sign the linky there if you are participating.

Aloha Friday by Kailani at An Island Life

Aloha #100

Birthday Treats and Green Tongues

Yesterday, as is our birthday tradition, we went out to dinner.  The boys wanted to have dinner with B’s parents, so B and I went to Mr. Fuji.  B has already featured the meal on her blog, but I had to feature some of the items in depth.

First up was vegetable sushi and a cucumber roll.  When I ordered this, I was expecting a few rolls with a mix of chopped veggies inside.  This is what I got instead.


You really need to click the photo and look at the large version to truly appreciate this.  It was quite a pleasant surprise over my admittedly bland mental picture.  The colors of all of the vegetables popped nicely.  There were yellow peppers, orange carrots, green asparagus and more.  The textures were nicely varied as well.  From the crunch of the carrots and peppers to the creaminess of the avocado and the chewiness of the mushrooms.  This was an amazing dish all around.

I had a birthday cookie cake awaiting me at home so normally I wouldn’t have ordered dessert.  However, I had a birthday coupon for a free tempura ice cream so I decided to get it.  I’m so glad I did.


I wish we got a good photo of the inside of this, but we were too busy eating it.  At its core, this dessert is a large, hard scoop of vanilla ice cream.  Right outside of that was a huge surprise: Cake!  In retrospect, it makes sense.  You need something to protect the ice cream from the hot frying oil.  Of course, outside of the hard, cold ice cream and the soft cake was the warm, crunchy tempura batter.  It was all topped sundae style with chocolate sauce, whipped cream and a cherry.  Considering that this all would normally cost $4 (and that they also have a Tempura Cheesecake), I think I’ll be bringing the boys here for dessert one day!

After a brief walk around to digest our food, we went back to B’s parents’ house.  There, we had a cookie cake.


I’ve got to admit to a fondness for cookie cakes.  Regular cake is ok and cheesecake is great, but I really love a good chocolate chip cookie.  Make it a giant chocolate chip cookie with frosting and YUM!

The only downside?  Green fingers and tongues.

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Of course, photographer-me had to try a macro shot of my boys’ tongues.

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And, with that, this post has gone from drool-inducing deliciousness to disgusting!

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