### Mar and Me (and Monkeyblanket)

Today was supposed to be the day that we all went to Disneyland. However, Marcus and I are recovering from a cold, so we revised the plan: Erin and Owen would go to Disneyland, Marcus and I would recover at home.

Mar and I had a great time today, despite feeling a little under the weather. I was a bit apprehensive at the beginning of the day because I haven't spent a day alone with Marcus since he's been mobile. Man, I just realized how sad that is right as I typed it, but it's been a busy busy year for me at work.

Well, I shouldn't have worried because Mar is a great kid. It dawned on me that as a parent you of course love your child. But there's nothing to say that your kid actually has to be a cool person. Let me tell you, Marcus is a really cool little guy! Ever since he started walking earlier this month, his personality has really bloomed. He just goes about his business with a smile on his face all day long, looking for ways to make people around him laugh.

One thing I really had hammered home today is that Mar loves his Monkeyblanket. Aunties Liz and Lindsay give him the blanket a while ago and he has really built a relationship with that thing. Picture a miniature bear-skin rug with extremely soft fur and a monkey head. Wherever Marmar goes, Monkeyblanket comes along.

After his nap, I forgot to take it out of the crib, and after getting his diaper changed, he ran around the house for a while without his blanket. After about 10 minutes, he walked into the kitchen where I was fixing lunch. With a concerned look on his face and he said, "Uh?!" He then ran back into his room where I found him trying to pull the blanked through the crib bars, but the monkey's head was stuck on the other side. He looked at me like, "Now do you see my problem? Care to give me a hand?" So I pulled Monkey out and handed it to him. Mar threw it on the floor, flopped down belly first on top of it, hugged it, and, if I'm not mistaken, started murmuring sweet nothings in Monkeyblanket's ear. (He's gonna hate stories like this when he's 15.)

The rest of the day we kicked a soccer ball around the back yard, ate Trader Joe's chicken-fried rice, played hide-n-seek in the sliding-door closets, and played with Owen's train set (a rare treat for Marcus since big brother would have been none too pleased to see him mess up the order of the cars in his train).

All in all, it was a great day!

blissful_e said…
So sweet.
Amy Pousson said…
"bearskin rug with a monkey head instead of a bear's head" is exactly how I've been describing that thing to my friends. Oh, and I am working on perfecting my imitation of Erin's imitation of Marcus walking. :)

Tell Erin to give us a Disneyland report!!
mama mia said…
I miss my morning kisses from mar-mar and the monkey blanket....can't wait till december!

### On the Height of J.J. Barea

Dallas Mavericks point guard J.J. Barea standing between two very tall people (from: Picassa user photoasisphoto).

Congrats to the Dallas Mavericks, who beat the Miami Heat tonight in game six to win the NBA championship.

Okay, with that out of the way, just how tall is the busy-footed Maverick point guard J.J. Barea? He's listed as 6-foot on NBA.com, but no one, not even the sports casters, believes that he can possibly be that tall. He looks like a super-fast Hobbit out there. But could that just be relative scaling, with him standing next to a bunch of extremely tall people? People on Yahoo! Answers think so---I know because I've been Google searching "J.J. Barea Height" for the past 15 minutes.

So I decided to find a photo and settle the issue once and for all.

I then used the basketball as my metric. Wikipedia states that an NBA basketball is 29.5 inches in circumfe…

### Finding Blissful Clarity by Tuning Out

It's been a minute since I've posted here. My last post was back in April, so it has actually been something like 193,000 minutes, but I like how the kids say "it's been a minute," so I'll stick with that.
As I've said before, I use this space to work out the truths in my life. Writing is a valuable way of taking the non-linear jumble of thoughts in my head and linearizing them by putting them down on the page. In short, writing helps me figure things out. However, logical thinking is not the only way of knowing the world. Another way is to recognize, listen to, and trust one's emotions. Yes, emotions are important for figuring things out.
Back in April, when I last posted here, my emotions were largely characterized by fear, sadness, anger, frustration, confusion and despair. I say largely, because this is what I was feeling on large scales; the world outside of my immediate influence. On smaller scales, where my wife, children and friends reside, I…

### The Force is strong with this one...

Last night we were reviewing multiplication tables with Owen. The family fired off doublets of numbers and Owen confidently multiplied away. In the middle of the review Owen stopped and said, "I noticed something. 2 times 2 is 4. If you subtract 1 it's 3. That's equal to taking 2 and adding 1, and then taking 2 and subtracting 1, and multiplying. So 1 times 3 is 2 times 2 minus 1."

I have to admit, that I didn't quite get it at first. I asked him to repeat with another number and he did with six: "6 times 6 is 36. 36 minus 1 is 35. That's the same as 6-1 times 6+1, which is 35."

Ummmmm....wait. Huh? Lemme see...oh. OH! WOW! Owen figured out

x^2 - 1 = (x - 1) (x +1)

So $6 \times 8 = 7 \times 7 - 1 = (7-1) (7+1) = 48$. That's actually pretty handy!

You can see it in the image above. Look at the elements perpendicular to the diagonal. There's 48 bracketing 49, 35 bracketing 36, etc... After a bit more thought we…