Dad Tucker Ditch Day

Hey bud- good morning. I just carried you downstairs and put you with momma. You slept on her all night, while I was apparently snoring up a storm and keeping her awake.

Yesterday I got this weird feeling that you needed your dad. Yeah, I know, you’re 20 months old, and everyone would say I’m crazy. But this gut feeling hit me in the morning- and it didn’t go away all day. Just kept nagging me. Every few minutes I had this hunch that you were lonely, or missed dad, or something was wrong at school. So I banged out a days worth of work by 2 and asked my bosses if I could have the afternoon.

I got to you right after your nap. You woke up dreary eyed and looked confused. You checked the window- it’s still light. You checked the room, it’s nap time. I could see your wheels turning. Then I said, “Let’s goooo” and you crawled up and realized we were outta there!

First we went to get you a haircut, but you weren’t having it. Seems you really want to let your hair grow, so we took off.

Next we went to the park in Westchase. You went CRAZY for over an hour crawling towers and going down slides. It was awesome, and I was so grateful that I had the time with you.

After the park we went to AMC Veterans and saw your first ever movie! You were an angel! You curled all up in your little recliner, milk, a banana, and pretzels- and just loved every second. You kept yelling and pointing at the screen when cool stuff happened. It was great. Just can’t tell you how much I love ya kid.

Couple times during the movie you crawled over and laid on me- 5 or 10 minutes, then went back.

It was a really special day. I can’t really explain why. But I still feel like you needed me yesterday. And I was there. Always.

Love you so much Taco.

Dad

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Email from Grammie

Dear Tuckypoo,

Tomorrow you will officially be one-and-a-half years old!  You’re growing up so fast!  Just last night, on the phone, I said, “say grrr” AND YOU DID!  I was so excited because we’ve been working on this as often as we can – which is never enough – because our time together is too limited being that we’re in different states.  (Boo!).  Of course the reason for the “grr” work is to teach you to say “grr-am-ee” so you can call me by name.  (Something you’d already be doing if South Carolina and Georgia would relocate!).  Once you learn to say Grammie, we’ll move on to Gramps – even though he wants you to call him Papa like “pah-puh” or, something funny you make up yourself.  (Which you may also do for me if I should be so lucky.)

Last weekend we were there for a visit and you were so much fun!  We played with your big Lego blocks and then you and Grampy went outside to do some water sports!  You wore your tiny diaper (it was hot) and held a bucket while Grampy filled it with water from the hose.  As soon as your bucket got an inch of water, you’d dump it!  Nobody but you and I know that’s exactly what we were doing when I bathed you the night before!  You had a little cup in there, with all these other toys your mom and dad lavished on you, and a small jug.  Every time I filled the jug with water and began slowly pouring it out, you’d quickly stick your tiny cup under it to catch the water and pour it out.  Over and over and over!  It got to where I was racing to fill the jug!  You must know by now, you LOVE water!  You’re even taking swimming lessons already!  Daddy says you blew bubbles under water already!!!

You did something else I just can’t get over last week!  Daddy sent me and Gramps a video from your school.  A lady (with her back toward the camera) held up a wooden cow and asked you, “What does the cow say?”  You looked up, saw the cow and said, “k-ow-ow.”  Now the sounds you said were only fairly clear and the lady said something like, “Thats right.  It’s a cow.  What does the cow say?”  And, YOU SAID, “mmmm-oo!”  I’ve replayed that video so many times to hear you say “mmmm-oo with the second cutest little voice I’ve ever heard in the whole wide world!!!

Now, I need to talk to you about a few serious things about your growing up stuff.  One thing is that last night I saw you pull this trick you have going with your daddy.  I’m pretty sure you do it to your mommy too but, I just haven’t seen it as much.  So, we’re on the phone and you’re sitting on the sofa drinking milk from your bottle then all of the sudden, you put your bottle down, stand up, turn around, reach down for your bottle, pick it up, hold it over the back of the couch and open your tiny fingers to let it drop on the floor – on purpose!  (Daddy’s back there so you want him to see it clearly.)  Next, you start crying!!!  Again, on purpose!  From some points of view, this is sort of funny but, in a weird way.  It’s funny because you’re so young and small and concocting such plans with your new parents but, it’s not so funny when you get big enough to understand it from their point of view.  Here’s the serious part: you’re going to have to start getting it back yourself!  If you drop it, you need to pick it up!  You’re smart enough and big enough to do it now.  It’s just part of growing up!

The other thing is your pacifier.  It’s been great but, it’s time to say “bye-bye!”  Pacifiers are for babies!  You’re a tiny toddler who can run, blow bubbles underwater and say mmmm-oo now!  As you learn to live without your bah-bahs, remember we all had to do it and there will still be ice cream!

That’s it my beautiful growing grandson!  HAPPY ONE-AND-A-HALF-YEAR-OLD BIRTHDAY TOMORROW!!!!  Me and Grampie are very proud of you and will LOVE YOU FOREVER!

XOOOOOOOOOOOOX,

Grammie M

First annual Birthday Baseball Game

Well kiddo- you are one now. It was the fastest year of my life watching you sprout from a tiny little blob that couldn’t even smile. Now you call mom and I by name, laugh uncontrollably, and walk whenever you forget you don’t know how.

You’ve changed our lives so much son. No matter how bad a day gets, you are there at the end of it with a big hug and a sloppy Bubba kiss. Sitting in the backyard used to bore me; now I could spend 3 days straight watching you splash and play. Mom and I love you so much, and it’s awesome how much you love us too.

For 38 years I looked forward to a day where I could take my son to a baseball game. Little girls dream of their wedding day. I dreamed of being a dad. So yesterday was a big one for me.

I got to carry you on my shoulders. Let you get a little sunburn on your cheeks. Let you chew on my hotdog. Watch you play in the outfield grass seats. Watch you and mom frolick. Let you taste my hotdog.

You’re my favorite Tucker. Thanks for making the last year the most special for mom and I ever. Can’t wait to see the little man you become.

Love,

Dad