Awkward Moments with the New Neighbor: Brought to You by Briggs

A handful of folks have DMed me on Twitter and Facebook over the past three weeks or so asking me for Briggs updates. And I’ve responded with phrases like Oh, he’s great and It’s so nice to have him back. But the truth is this—he wasn’t back, y’all. Not even close.

Nine full weeks after his surgery, Briggs was still struggling each and every time he got up from his bed—still walking with a discernible limp. And worst of all, he’d lost that youthful, mischievous nature we’d grown to accept love about him.

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Netting Shrimp To Use As Bait To Catch Redfish At The Beach

This post is about netting shrimp to use as bait to catch redfish at the beach. Shocker, right? Anyway, it’s a very cool process that my friend introduced us to. Yes. Same guy. My partner in dipshittery crime in the Great Balcony Lockout Debacle of 2012. Goodtimes.

Anyway when not lending a helping hand in shattering kitchen windows of beach-side condos, my buddy isn’t afraid to go to the tip of the island — right near the place his family stays — and catch redfish.

And this year, Alli, the triplets and I tagged along. It was awesome, y’all. Here’s how it went down from the throw of the net to the catching of the fish:

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2 Dudes on 1 Balcony With No Clue

Okay. I’m feeling surly today, which means this post may have a bit of profanity, so don’t say I didn’t warn you fuckers.

Why so surly, you might ask? Well, for starters, it’s only my second day back from the longest family vacation I’ve ever taken (10 days), so I’m totally behind and still a bit tired to boot. Plus, I’m about to relay an embarrassing story that happened on said vacation which will reveal me to be the incompetent fool that I really am. And this has me most upset.

Still, let’s get started, shall we?

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One Year Ago

I hate it when I catch myself saying “I can’t believe it’s been that long.” Because, truly, what’s so hard to believe about the passing of time? Nothing. That’s what. It’s passing right now. It never stops passing. And it never will.

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The Real Reason We Had Another Child

Before I start, most of y’all know that I’m not afraid to make a video with my trusty HD Sony Handycam. And if you comment on the post I wrote today over at Babble, you’ll have a chance to win your own HD Sony Handycam (complete with built-in projector which not only totally works, but was also the subject of my post). To read and leave a comment, click HERE.

Okay, so Caroline, the kids and I just got back from a wonderful, week-long vaca at the beach. Great time. See that picture above? It was taken at the Beach Club in Sea Pines on Hilton Head Island. Given that there are seven different entities that must perform when the man behind the camera says cheese, I’m pretty sure that’s about as good as we can do.

Quick shout out to Luke who looks like he was trying to make C experience a wardrobe malfunction. Better luck next time, son.

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The Conservative Risk Taker: A Cautionary Tale of Parenting and Hypocrisy

I’m a risk taker. And I knew it shortly after I’d graduated from college when I loaded up my Toyota Tercel and headed to Seattle despite the fact I’d only visited the city once in my entire life for a grand total of 16 hours just two weeks prior. And despite the fact that I had no money whatsoever. (Don’t worry. I stopped in Vegas.) And no job waiting for me. No friends, either, except, I suppose, my college girlfriend, though that relationship was destined to fail shortly thereafter.

True to form, I had a sound bite (sound byte?) prepared for all those folks who questioned what I was doing (and, believe me, there were many).

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What a Difference a Babe Makes

That’s right. What a difference a babe makes. Or four. You see, Luke, pictured below, is our fifth little bundle of joy and, as such, my wife and I have noticed a huge difference in how we’re raising him versus how his siblings were raised.

Before I even go on, I want to make one thing clear: I’m not being critical of first-time parents. Raising a baby is a big deal, y’all, which is exactly why first-time parents (typically, at least) are a bit more uptight than parents who have been around the block a time or two. (It’s also why, I believe, that there’s something to the whole birth-order personality traits, but that’s another post, entirely.)

So while my wife would throw a parade whenever our oldest sprouted a new tooth, I’m not sure she could even tell you how many teeth Luke has. I know I couldn’t.

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The Unplanned Baby That Was Always Part of the Plan

Caroline and I were having dinner with my sister and mother last weekend when my sister, who totally loves Luke, said something quite interesting. It was along the lines of “You know, when I first heard Caroline was expecting again, I was like ‘No, no. I like it the way it is.’ ” She went on, of course, to talk about how now, she’s so smitten with Luke and with the current iteration of our family that she couldn’t believe she ever had such thoughts.

And anyone who’s ever had a surprise baby (as Luke was) can probably relate to such a sentiment. At least, I could. Anyway, the wonderful conversation which ensued inspired this post that I wrote for Disney, and, for the first time ever, I feel as if I finally put into words just why it is that we’re all so lucky to have Luke onboard — most notably, perhaps, the triplets.

Anyway, it felt great to write it for some reason, and if you’re in that same surprise-pregnancy boat (or know someone who is), this might be something worth reading. OH, and thanks to S.A. who corrected me: I meant “throes” as opposed to “throws.” (Embarrassing, but oh well!)

Our baby Luke was a surprise, y’all. And when Caroline and I learned she was pregnant with him, we fainted were smack dab in the middle of the throes of toddlerhood. Times three. You see, I went from carefree bachelor to father of four in just 13 months thanks to marrying a single mom, then quickly conceiving triplets.

And the triplets had proven to be quite a handful, especially when they were three-years-old, which was exactly when we learned of Luke (or Grand Finale as I’d taken to calling him at that point). And the end result was two 41-year-old parents who loved their family exactly as it was. Four kids were plenty, thank you very much. Especially in light of the difficulty which came part and parcel with the triplets.

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The Problem with Competing Against Caroline

Okay. Here’s the deal. I’m a pretty competitive person. And it turns out that my wife’s a bit competitive, too. And from time to time those competitive spirits collide, if you will.

I’ve written about said collisions a time or two, you know. Most notably a tennis-related collision. I won’t bore you with the details, but the long story short is this: I used to regularly wax my wife at tennis. I’m talking 0-and-0-type stuff here.

But then she started playing tennis regularly and formally via a competitive league and went all Evonne Goolegong on me outta nowhere. So I challenged her to a match. And she…

kicked my ass.

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The Best Thing About Triplets

You know what the best thing about having triplets is? Watching three kids who share the same parents, the same house, the same school, the same siblings and so many of the same experiences turn out so differently. And I’m telling you one thing, y’all — this will probably go down as one of my favorite summers of all times because their differences, which have always been prominent, are becoming more apparent than ever before.

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