Erin and Ty meet the cycle of life at its most basic courtesy of their 5 day-old.

There seem to me to be three distinct parts an infant’s world: Sleeping, feeding, and changing. I’m sure there are additional elements (bathing comes to mind), but at its core, the kid can live life pretty happily for a long-time if we get these steps right. We’re working on it.

Right now I’m busy trying some trickery to insure that the sleeping happens as readily as possible. Babies dig white noise, and Jonah is no exception. I can get him from full-throated cry to docile wonderment in under 30 seconds by carrying him into the bathroom and flipping on the bath fan. That won’t solve the problem if it’s a diaper issue or if he’s hungry, but if Erin or I just need a moment to think without a kid wailing in our ear, it’s a nifty trick.

I also assembled the Kick-and-Play earlier today, and we’re hopeful that its rhythmic swaying will help lull the little fellow into a deeper stage of slumber He took an afternoon nap there reasonably well, so we know it’s possible. Whether that’s the start of a fortunate trend or a fluke happening, we’ll see. Either way, Jonah’s sleeping in roughly two hour chunks, which is enough for his parents to get some things done, but not enough to get any really good sleep ourselves. A great many things are very, very funny when sleep deprivation hits. Because it seems to have hit and stayed for the duration, we’re having a good time.

Since we’re breast feeding exclusively—and by “we” I mean Erin and Jonah—I don’t have the right answer when Jonah asks the frequent question, “Got Milk?” Erin, however, seems to be getting straight A’s on this, as Jonah is latching on and gulping down. It is a starkly beautiful sight to behold, though I confess that I’m also looking forward to the time some weeks hence when we start to integrate some bottle fed breast milk into the routine, and I can play a bigger role in this area of Jonah’s life.

One area I can do something about is changing the diapers. Lucky, lucky me. So far Erin and I have been tag teaming the kid, like we’re station workers doing an oil change on an ’86 Ford Festiva. I’ll get him locked down on the changing pad while she unsnaps the onesie. I’ll grab the legs, and undo one side of the diaper while she gets the other. One of us will slide the poopy diaper out of the way while the other covers the kid’s penis with a cloth so he doesn’t squirt at us in mid-change, something little boys are known to do (and which Jonah has done already). Erin will wipe him down while I hold his squirmy little legs, then one or the other of us will put the new diaper on and snap everything back together. We’re not pros at it yet, but given a few weeks I’m sure we’ll be working this like an Indy pit crew.

That’ll be good, because thus far I’ve not soloed in the diaper-changing arena. To my way of thinking, you can pass all the written and oral tests you want, but until you actually do the deed by yourself, you can’t get the merit badge. I’m gradually working my way up to that, thinking it’s a doable proposition. Given that diaper changes are needed so often, I’ll have plenty of chance to practice with Erin’s assistance before I take the plunge. If I get it right and do it well, I figure when I’m 90 Jonah might return the favor.