Sunday Share: Week 46

I’m here to remind you that Christmas is now quickly approaching. Relatively speaking, anyway. There are just 36 more sleeps. That’s five weeks and a day. Five more Sundays! One hand, I’ll miss some traditions we used to have. On the other hand, I’m more excited for this Christmas than in Christmases past. I can almost smell the cinnamon rolls baking in the oven and the coffee and tea brewing in the Keurig.

I just hope we make it past 6 am…

Till then, happy reading!

True North Nomad
Never give up hope, even when hope is all that’s left…

Stories of Four Boys
When your classroom seems to be all boys, yet they still break your heart..

Old House in the Shires
Advice from a teacher for when your child is stressed about going to school…

Mom of Two Little Girls
Sometime we laugh with our kids. Sometimes we laugh at our kids…

Humor Columnist Blog
She tells the history of Thanksgiving like she was actually there… sort of…

You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Let’s connect!

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Questions I Asked My Kids: ep55

1. If you opened a store what would you name it and what would you sell?

Crash: I would name it RC Cars and Trucks and and sell remote controlled vehicles – cars, trucks, hamsters, drones…
Bang: I would sell cans of soda, chips, some cakes and name it “The Junk Store”

2. If you could grow anything in the garden, what would you grow?

Crash: Jack’s giant beanstalk
Bang: More of me

3. If your stuffie could talk, what would it say?

Crash: He would say a lot of stuff like Lets play Minecraft and Can we snuggle?
Bang: I love you (and mom and dad, too)

4. If you were to draw me a picture right this instant, what would you draw?

Crash: I would draw that car on TV that goes 360 miles per hour
Bang: Scribbles

5. What sound do you like?

Crash: Chicken noises
Bang: Cats purring and sneezing dogs and cannons blowing off because they’re sounds I can make

6. If you could ask a wild animal anything what would you ask it?

Crash: I would ask a cheetah, “Can I adopt you?” so when I miss the bus we can zoom there
Bang: I’d ask a giraffe to lift me way way high

7. If animals could drive, which one would be the most fun to ride with?

Crash: An elephant
Bang: A giraffe

elephant+car

8. What are three things you want to do this winter?

Crash: Build an igloo, have a snowball fight, and snowboard
Bang: Snowball fight, jump in gigantic snow piles and biff Frizbees

9. What do you want to be when you grow up?

Crash: A racecar driver… actually no. A robot designer
Bang: A cat sitter

10. What’s the funniest word you know?

Crash: Quack
Bang: Poopy (then whispers “type a-r-s-e”)

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I’m Not Ready For This

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I’m not talking about the snow we got last night. That cold, white, fluffy stuff can fall all it wants. I’m comfortable driving in it (once we get our winter tires put on). I love playing in it. I love how it makes the world look clean again. We really didn’t even get that much. It was enough to make the roads wet and the grass white for a couple hours. It was also enough to excite a certain 6 year old.

I can’t believe it’s Christmas and it’s only November 14th!!

In truth, what I’m not ready for is the excited 6 year old’s brother to take an interest in girls. I always knew it was just a matter of time, but I didn’t think that time would ever come. It would eternally be “just a matter of time”. Girls are supposed to be gross. Cooties and all…

We’ve now come to a new bridge. One in which we’ve never crossed before. Preferably, I’d like to go ahead and burn it now and make him swim across when he’s 25. On the other hand, I don’t want him to drown or eaten by a manipulative crock when he starts swimming the strange waters that are relationships when he’s 25.

I’ve been trying to think of myself when I was 10. From what I can remember I was a fairly shy little dork back then. The only difference now is that I’m less shy. More importantly, I’m trying to remember how my parents handled me back then. Did I express such an interest in girls in fifth grade? Did my parents let me handle it how I wanted? How much more did they know than they let on to? Should I handle Crash’s love interests the same way?

My God. I’ve got a thousand more questions now than I did when I started writing this post.

I would love to be a hands off, watch from a distance kind of dad. At the same time, I don’t want to be watching from a distance if it’s going to be a trainwreck. But at the same time, it’s his trainwreck and he needs to learn how to handle it. But at the same time, maybe it won’t be trainwreck. I do have an extra tool that my parents didn’t have. Texting. He’s learned to text others from his tablet. This means, unbeknownst to him, we can read his conversations. On one hand it sounds like a breech in privacy and trust. In my head, we’re the parents, he’s 10, and we’re keeping him safe. Right? As of right now he doesn’t know that we DW figured out the password he put on his tablet.

The advantage is that it gives us an insight into what’s going on in his head. It’s easy to forget that he’s got more going on than just going to school and learning. He’s learning to make friends and be a friend. He’s learning about this girl interest. He’s got everything going on at home… being a son, being a brother, his own interests and desires. He is his own person even if he’s still growing into the man he’ll be one day. It’s our responsibility to help him grow into that man. Help him navigate those new waters, new experiences, and figure out how to grow up.

For now, I’ll just keep snooping, keep my trap shut on what I know, and try to show a little more patience.

Then I’ll cross my fingers and hope for more snow.

Sunday Share: Week 45

Can you believe there are only 6 more weeks until Christmas morning? If you follow me via the Insta you’ll already know we’re down to 43 sleeps.
51 until next Halloween. We’ve got loads of time on that one, my friends.

Dream Big, Dream Often
The best five tips ever in the history of the world of blogging…

The Dad
Cutting the cables on your doodads… love or hate?

My Upward Spiral
Being reminded of what perfect really means

Dorky Mom Doodles
We all forget sometimes… Some of us forget more often than others. Thank you Tooth Fairy.

Coach Daddy
Just a dad answering his kids questions as truthfully and honestly as possible…

You can also follow me on Facebook and Twitter

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Go Ask Your Father: Yogurts, Bats, Parrot Speech, and Light Years

I’m a sucker for those sappy, highly predictable Christmas movies. Lucky for us there’s a channel for that. DW and I started watching one before supper. Christmas In The Air. We didn’t have time to finish it before the boys’ bedtime, though. Thankfully, with today’s technology, we can record TV without a big, clunky VCR. With the heathens are asleep, tucked in their beds with visions of slugs, snails and puppy dog tails dancing in their heads, DW and I made ourselves comfy cozy on the couch. I with my blog and her with her crocheting, a couple glasses of wine and the sappy, highly predictable movie we started earlier. It did snow here, today. It was also freezing cold. Winter is coming and Christmas is just a couple corners away. 44 corners, to be exact.

What’s the difference between Greek yogurt and regular yogurt?

I really don’t care. They’re both gross to me. The boys, however, both enjoy their yogurt for a bedtime snack. Bang loves his plain vanilla stuff while his brother enjoys berries in his. Except, just recently, he discovered a seasonal flavor – pumpkin spice Greek yogurt. This kind of yogurt is strained more than the regular stuff. This takes out the whey – the watery part of yogurt. Taking the whey out also removes the sugar and carbs. Sugar and carbs are the bad guys these day. They’re the assholes of the food world. It used to be fat, but fat got pardoned. Sugar and carbs have become the Bonnie and Clyde. That’s another difference – Greek yogurt is higher in fat and lower in sugar and carbs than regular yogurt. It also has more protein which means it will keep you feeling full longer than that sugary regular stuff.

Why can’t bats stand upright?

It sounds like the opening line of a joke. Like a hockey joke that goes “Why don’t Canadians drink tea? Because the Americans have all the cups”. Bats, however, are no joke. They can’t stand up. Their legs are too short and undeveloped for standing. They’re perfect for hanging, though. This is good because it’s the only way the bats will achieve flight. With legs shorter than the Maple Leafs win streak they can’t achieve enough lift from the ground. They can climb, though. So they climb to gain height then fall into flight. Like me sledding off my neighbor’s garage roof.

If parrots don’t have vocal cords how do they talk?

While some parrots, like our Piper bird, learn just a few words, other can learn nearly 2,000. It is true that parrots do not have vocal cords. I know a few people who shouldn’t have them, either. I won’t name any presidential names. Since they have no vocal cords, they use a syrinx. Located at the base of their trachea, its walls vibrate as air passes through it. By adjusting the tension of the syrinx, they can change the sound. In this manner they mimic everything from the smoke detector, to other animals, and learn speech. Alex, an African Grey parrot, understood categorization like “same and different” and “bigger and smaller”. He could identify objects by their shape (“Three-corner”, “Four-corner”, up to “Six-corner”) and material: when shown a pom-pom or a wooden block, he could answer “Wool” or “Wood” correctly as often as a presidential tweet made no sense. Alex could identify the difference between yellow and green same-sized objects by saying “Color” or identify a larger one by naming its color. If asked what the difference was between two identical blue keys, Alex learned to reply, “none.”

What’s a light year?

It’s to infinity and beyond! It’s not a measurement of time, as the word year might suggest. Instead, it’s a measure of distance. It’s the distance light travels in one year. Since it can travel 186,000 miles in one second, you can just imagine how far it goes in a year. You have to multiply that one second by 60 seconds in a minute. Then multiply that by 60 minutes in an hour. Then multiply that by 24 hours in a day. Then multiply that by 365 days in a year. 186,000 x 60 x 60 x 24 x 365 = about 5 trillion 900 billion miles. For comparison, the sun is only 8 light minutes aways. Alpha Centauri, the nearest star to Earth, is 4.4 light years away. For comparison, if the distance between Earth and sun were shrunk to an inch, Alpha Centauri would be four and half miles away. Our universe is huge. In fact, it’s so huge that light hasn’t had enough time to travel from one side to the other of it. Yet, here we are, on this little, blue marble hurtling through all of it.

Questions I Asked My Kids: Ep 54

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It was that time again. My 17th time in Canada, to be exact. I gave 16 times in the US. I’m done until January now. I gave blood this evening and as usual, the boys joined me. Bang is so curious. The nurse who took my blood was seriously impressed. He watched her swab my arm to clean it. He watched her put the needle in and fill the bag for testing. He then wandered over to watch a teacher from his school have her arm pierced, too. Then he watched the nurse pull the needle from my arm. He wanted to see where the needle had gone it but I didn’t remove the gauze for fear of blood spurting out and me bleeding out. The nurse even let him feel the bag that contained my pint of blood. He was intrigued by how warm it was.

If all goes as planned, he still wants to be a neurosurgeon when he grows up.


1. Where does wind come from?

Crash: Warm air collides with cold air and they make wind some how
Bang: Trees sneezing because I know what humility is (for the full explanation, see Instagram)

2. Why do I give blood?

Crash: So that if people have surgery, like me for example, and they need blood then they can use yours
Bang: So it doesn’t rot and you die

3. Will you give blood when you are old enough?

Crash: Yeah, if they invent a needle that you can’t feel at all. And I mean at all.
Bang: No, because I don’t want to get a needle

4. If you could change anything about our family what would it be?

Crash: Nothing or that my brother is never annoying making supid faces or makes fun of me when I’m humming
Bang: Our last names… we’d be the Michaels

5. What is your biggest worry?

Crash: That the sun will eventually will grow big and cover up all the planets and make Pluto warm
Bang: When I came in the house and no one was here and there was creepy music on but dad was really just hiding upstairs (I did this for Halloween)

6. Where is somewhere you would never want to live?

Crash: Afganistan because there’s war there
Bang: In Africa because their dances are really hard (he had an African dance/drum demonstration in school today)

7. If Taylor Swift came to our house right now, what would you tell her?

Crash: First I’d call my friend because she’s a “Swifty” then I’d tell Taylor to sing I Came In Like A Wrecking Ball I mean All About That bass No! Not that one… Shake It Off
Bang: To sing Shake It Off

8. Why do you not like to go to bed?

Crash: It takes me forever to fall asleep and there’s a ton of better things I could do like livestream Minecraft on YouTube all night
Bang: Because I want to stay up late and watch Justin Time on TV

9. How much wine will mom and dad drink after you go to bed?

Crash: 3 cups then fall asleep under the table
Bang: 15 million gallons

10. Which book character do you wish you could meet?

Crash: Alex and Conner from Land of Stories (I, Crash, highly recommend that one!)
Bang: Martha the trucker because I want to sit in the driver seat and drive a transfer truck

 

Every question where you can follow me? I have an answer for that…. Twitter, Facebook and Instagram

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The Backup Plan

Backstory:

DW started a keto diet about a month ago. It’s great for her and she’s doing a killer job of sticking to it. Because it’s a high fat, moderate protein diet I often find myself cooking two dishes. One for her and one for the boys and I. This often leaves her more leftovers than the boys and I. That brings us to where I was this evening.

Here’s what the original plan was…

Because of my lack of wanting to cook this evening and DW having some of her leftover Tex-Mex chicken that I cooked last night, all I had to do was find something for myself and the boys to eat. We almost had PB&J. That’s how much I didn’t feel like cooking. We had some popcorn chicken in the freezer and we wanted some fries with that but I had to make a quick trip to the grocery store to get some. You know what the grocery has besides french fries?

That’s peppermint ice cream with chunks of fudge. That stuff is amazing. I knew damn well I couldn’t bring this home and still be called a loving husband by the DW on the diet. So I jumped into action and started baking. I love baking, but because of diets and not needing more junk food in the house, I haven’t baked much recently. DW’s sister-in-law (does that make her my sister-in-law, too?) sent a recipie back at Thanksgiving for a keto friendly cheesecake and DW loved it.

It satisfied her chocolate craving. Anyone with a partner suffering a chocolate craving and has no access to chocolate knows how ugly it can get. If you’re not sure, just imagine a zombie apocalypse- ready to eat the head off anybody.

It ended up being a team effort. I made the cheesecake, she made the whipped chocolate topping. Overall, she said it was slightly different than her SIL’s, but that it was good. It was slightly different because I used a different brand of sweetener. I won’t bore you with the details. I’ll just leave a link to the recipe below. As a tease, you’ll have to see my Instagram to see the picture of our final, delicious product..

Brownie Cheesecake

Instagram, Facebook, Twitter – If you need a backup plan, follow me. I don’t know where we’re going but we’re going to have fun getting there.

Sunday Share: Week 44

We just fell back an hour on this side of the equator. It’ll be dark by 5:30 this evening. Blah. At least at 6:30 yogurt time (the cue to start getting ready for bed) I won’t have to hear, “BUT IT’S STILL LIGHT OUT!” Maybe I’ll try the it’s-dark-out-time-to-get-ready-for-bed trick at 5:30. I can’t complain too much though. They did sleep until 7am (would have been 8 am yesterday). So you either have an extra hour to read this week’s picks or you have extra daylight to read this week’s picks.

Either way, happy reading!

Bearded Fury
1 year 9 month and 12 day old takes her parents on tour of a castle and someone gets a red hot poker up their posterior.

Twin Daddy (found through Victo Delore)
Looking in the mirror and not seeing you, but you’re there… And a beautiful piece on depression…

Wonderoak
Adulting might be difficult, but at least we have swearing. Jessica tells of a few other things she’s teaching her kids about, too…

Man vs Mommy
When bad behavior is wrongly translated to bad children, we must defend them…

Ballsed Up Parenting
On gender stereotyping children…

I’ll also share my Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages for you to follow…

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10 Questions I Asked My Kids

Day 7 of 7 day of black and white photographs of my life. No people. No explanations.

Thanks Sandra for nominating me for this challenge! I nominate DW.


Dumb 10 frames! I want to do algebra!

These two sentence were uttered during our trick-or-treating trek. We happened upon a house who’s owner works at the boys’ school. Six year old Bang decided to wow her with his knowledge of algebra.

I know algebra! 4 plus A equals 8. A equals 4. But I know harder ones too. 4 plus A equals 1. A equals minus 3.

I taught him this in just a few minutes one day and now he’s hooked. I taught him addition with carrying, too. It only took him three problems to figure that out. He loves it. My next step will be to teach him subtraction with borrowing. He catches on to math concepts so quickly. Crash and I are jealous! I know exactly where I’ll get some worksheets for him to do, too. Education.com is great for teachers, parents, teacher-parents, and students. There are themed worksheet generators, games, mazes and they cover content across the curriculum from primary (kindergarten) to 5th grade.

Make a splash and practice 3-digit subtraction with Education.com’s kayaking-themed worksheet. Kids can get more fun subtraction activities here.

Disclosure: The opinions expressed here are entirely my own. The affiliate expressed permission to appear on this blog at my discretion. Links were provided by the affiliate. I was not compensated for this promotion.

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1. Who is your favorite TV/book/story character and what do you like about him/her?

Crash: Raven from Teen Titans Go, because I like that show.
Bang: Justin Time because they do fun sorts of stuff like going to the moon

2. What’s one thing you would change about Dad?

Crash: You would say yes to everything I want you to say yes to and no to everything I want you to say no to.
Bang: You never have to clean

3. What’s one thing you would change about Mom?

Crash: Nothing
Bang: I would change Mom to love Splatoon 2

4. What’s one thing you would change about yourself?

Crash: Get rid of the flakey stuff in my hair
Bang: I would never have to sleep and I can have baths all day

5. Where do clouds come from?

Crash: They’re made from water vapor when sun heats up water and it goes up and makes clouds
Bang: The sun evaporates water and the sun makes the warm air into cold air which is the cloud

6. How much do humpback whales weigh?

Crash: 5 metric tons (converts to 33,000 pounds)
Bang: 15 million pounds

Actual weight: 50-80,000 pounds

7. If you had $20, what would you do with it?

Crash: Buy a Google Play card then buy a car from “Drive Ahead” and games and books
Bang: I would save it to get a hatchimal

8. If we got a boat, what could we name it?

Crash: S.S. Wood
Bang: The Navy Ship

9. Who is the most beautiful person in the world?

Crash: Me (I was neither surprised nor impressed with this answer)
Bang: Mom

10. How did you help someone today?

Crash: I was climbing with a friend at school and she slipped and I grabbed her hand so she wouldn’t fall
Bang: I helped my friends have fun by playing with them