when I started this blog five years ago, I was a pet sitter and the name animal-crackers made sense. now I'm a stay-at-home-dad and freelance writer, but rather than confuse everyone by getting a different blog, it's just easier to keep posting things here.

Sunday, January 29, 2006


After 358 days in Iraq, my brother returned to the states yesterday. His wife had also spent a year there and returned last month. Both are safe and sound.

Most of the people who read this blog don't know Tim and Lynn. Both have been to Bosnia and South Korea. Tim had served in Kuwait, about eight years ago. But this is the closest they've been to real danger.

We're all just happy they made it back without a shrapnel souvenir.

Check out their Web site: Tim & Lynn's Desert Expedition
posted by todd at 11:35 AM 2 comments

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Heavy D

Dylan is getting huge. On Jan 18, he weighed 10 pounds. Five days later, he weighed 10 pounds 7 ounces.

Using cutting-edge technology, we have projected Dylan's weight gain and created a computer enhanced image of what he may look like.

Here is D now.

Here is D in two weeks.

And this is D in one month.

posted by todd at 11:14 AM 0 comments

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Google this

Maybe the Justice Department should google "1984".

Our dear friends in the Ministry of It's-Not-Torture-Unless-It-Leaves-A-Mark want to see what you've been googling. Trying to salvage an un-Constitutional anti-porn law, DOJ has subpoenaed information from Google, Yahoo and MSN about who is searching for what.

Specifically, DOJ wants a list of general search terms from one day. WTF?

Yahoo and MSN have complied, but really who cares. When's the last time anyone has used these sites?

This information isn't to bolster a specific case. DOJ is casting a net for a billion fish and hoping one fish involves kiddy porn. Of course, the Republican counter argument is: If you've done nothing wrong you have nothing to fear.

Yes, I have nothing to fear from a tyrannical despot who illegally taps phones, tortures people, instigates internationally condemned wars, promotes homophobic hysteria, opposes sound science and has a staff of criminals and imbeciles. (Did I miss anything?)

So this is what I propose: When the government wins, and it will win because it's the government, everyone needs to get bat-shit crazy with the google.

Here is a list of recommended search terms:

1) How to make an atomic bomb
2) Tom DeLay likes kiddy porn
3) George Bush Bin Laden XXX
4) Dick Cheney smokes crack
6) Karl Rove bestiality
7) Donald Rumsfeld satan
posted by todd at 9:05 AM 4 comments

Wednesday, January 18, 2006


It's been a busy two weeks since my last blog. Dylan has had all sorts of appointments, and he has another this afternoon. On Friday he weighed 9 pounds 14 ounces, so he has to be at least a 10 pounder by now.

Here's the chubs taking a bath.

Yesterday Josh was in school, so we took Dylan back to the NICU for a visit. Then we made another stop to see the guy who delivered Dylan and saved Andrea's life.

posted by todd at 10:49 AM 0 comments

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Little Longhorn

Dylan & Co. watched a very exciting Rose Bowl last night. Here he is in his "I'm a Little Longhorn" T-shirt. He was equally excited to see Penn State kick some butt on Tuesday.

A little known Da Vinci portrait, "Madonna on the Green Chair".

posted by todd at 10:14 AM 2 comments

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The message

This blog was never intended to be a family picture gallery. But that's mostly what it's been for about four months now. Starting today, you will see a wider variety of reading material -- usually involving outrage.

For example:

Someone I know received the following message from her mother:

"Hi. We got your Christmas gifts and we're sending them back. We're not sending you any Christmas gifts because you never come to visit."

More or less. I didn't hear the exact words.

Of course my friend doesn't visit her mother. Her mother kicked her out of the house when she was 15 because the step-father could no longer tolerate her teenage behavior.

What's worse, even though my friend suspects her step-father is insidiously behind her mother's more recent rejection, she still blames herself. She thinks she did something wrong to incur such wrath.

No. Her mother's just evil, selfish and devoid of compassion.
posted by todd at 8:58 AM 2 comments

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Little chubbers

Dylan had his second visit to the pediatrician today. He's 9 pounds 4 ounces. A week ago he was 8 pounds 10 ounces, and 11 days ago when he was discharged he weighed 8 pounds 5 ounces.

His chubby little cheeks belie his screaminghabenero reflux, shaky lungs and high blood pressure. Every evening about this time, his stomach bubbles over. A long bouncy walk is the only thing that seems to calm it.

Yesterday while Andrea was out, I tried keeping Dylan in the swing with his pacifier. But he wouldn't have it. In Josh's words:

"Dad, Dylan won't keep his stupid freakin binky in his mouth."

Guess I need to shut my stupid freakin mouth.

In other news, we received the bill for Dylan's hospital stay.


That's not counting the $156,000-plus that the doctors have billed.

I've never before seen -- and probably never will see -- a single bill totaling $615,693.13. Our portion: $0.00. Damn, that feels good.

And in other, other news, guess who dropped his first turd into the toilet today? I only mention it so years from now Josh will be horribly embarrassed.
posted by todd at 6:34 PM 2 comments