I Have My Glasses On

I had it a minute ago. I don’t know where it is now.

You may have noticed (but probably didn’t, but a million points to you if you did) that I changed my gravatar. That’s my photo that shows up everywhere I leave a comment. I changed it because I got my new glasses today. They’re orange.

That doesn’t mean I’ll be able to find stuff without asking DW. I swear, when I look for stuff it’s not where I look. As soon as she looks in the exact same location I did *POOF* whatever I was looking for is there in the exact spot was I looking.

It wasn’t there when I looked!

I’m convinced that she moves it so she can claim it was there the whole time. Or she’s a Jedi and enjoys playing those mind tricks on me. I’m more susceptible than a storm trooper to Jedi mind tricks. I can’t blame her, though. It would be fun to play mind tricks on me so I’m going with that option.

She’s a Jedi.

So now I have these new glasses and I still won’t be able to find stuff. It’s a genetic trait, unfortunately. My dad had it. I have it. Now, both Crash and Bang have it. I think they have it worse than I do. Must be the “mom curse” (thanks mom). Now I’m frustrated that I have to go show them whatever it was they were looking for is exactly where I’m telling them look for it. When they look, it’s not there. Hell, I’ve pointed directly at the item in question and the best they can do is spin in circles with their eyes closed.

“I don’t see it anywhere!”

I’ve had glasses for about 6 years. I discovered I needed them when I went for my physical for immigration to Canada. The doctor told me to read the chart with my left eye and I had no problem. Then he told me to read it with my right and the chart disappeared. I couldn’t find it even though I saw it a minute ago. Fast forward a couple years and I sort of kind of lost my first pair of glasses. It wasn’t my fault, though. DW and I were out kayaking with my aunt. It was a calm, quiet little river with lots of turtles and birds and a beaver someone mistakenly thought was a bear. There were also bugs. When one had the nerve to land on my ear I swatted it off.

I also swatted off my glasses. They disappeared faster than the Orioles hopes at a division championship. Somewhere on the Tuckahoe River there is a beaver with improved eyesight.

Sometime ago I flat out stopped wearing my glasses because the nose pads were pinchy. It felt like I was wearing a clothespin. This pair has plastic frames and are nice and comfy. They’re also orange. Like my hopeless Orioles. In the words of my brother-in-law, DW says I’m “peacocking”. Strutting my stuff and showing off my plumage. I’m sure I have feathers here somewhere, I just can’t find them at the moment.

“These aren’t the feathers you’re looking for.”

DW got new glasses, too. When I first met her (around the time the Cubs first won the World Series) she had these awesome burgundy, plastic frame glasses. I loved them and they made me fall in love with her too. I might have been the the Jedi mind trick, but I’m pretty sure it was her glasses. Anyway, she got a new pair, too. They’re purple. And they’re bi-focals progressives. I think this officially makes her older than me.

Advertisements

Parenting with Clickers On My Socks…

At it’s roots, this is a parenting blog. More often than not I write about the joys and frustrations caused by the two creatures my wife gave birth to. I love those heathens, even when I’d rather they take a long walk off a short pier. In the words of Homer:

I want it all: the terrifying lows, the dizzying highs, the creamy middles…

I chose to make this blog mostly about parenting mostly because it’s what I know, mostly. I am certainly no expert on the topic. I’m not even an expert on parenting my own kids let alone yours and everyone elses. Kids provide an endless supply of stories, laughs, tricks, techniques, and thank-God-they’re-finally-in-bed. So I have plenty of material to share with you. Whether it’s about stupid, straight brimmed hats, places we visited, or answers to many, many questions, you’re bound to find something useful. Since I handle most of life with humor, I make sure to add as much of that spice as I can.

I have almost no idea what I’m doing.

I know I’m not the only daddy blogger and that’s okay. I’m glad I’m not alone. It means I get to look at what other dads are doing like a cheat sheet in Home ec class. I’ll show you my answers if you show me yours. Come to think of it, it’s okay to work in groups. It’s encouraged, really. We all want what is best for our kids, so why not cheat a little and look at what others are doing?

My kid is being an arsehole. Is it just a phase and how do I make it stop?

My kid won’t stop dabbing. Should I put him in a straight jacket?

How much wine will I need after today?

There are as many ways to parent as there are kinds of parents. Helicopter. Snow plow. Crunchy. Free range. The whole continuem between drill sargent strict and hands-off lienient. Breast fed, bottle fed, spoon fed. You know which one is best? Which on should we all be?

We all should be the best we can be. We should be the kind of parent that raises compassionate, educated, healthy human beings. Whether you live in a shack in the woods with no electricity or the penthouse suite on the 25th floor, just be the best parent you can be. Know your child and make decisions and saccrifices in their best interest. You’re not their friend. You’re their mum, their dad, their legal guardian.

Parenting is not a democracy, it’s a dictatorship. Set rules, set boundaries. Lord knows there are plenty of both out in the big, wide world. Follow through with consequences. Lord knows the big, wide world will do that, too.

But don’t forget to laugh and laugh loudly. Act silly and dance in the kitchen or the living room or the bedroom. Or dance in the bath tub until the smoke detectors start blaring (Yes, in our house, that is possible. It’s been done). Sing loud and sing proud.

So don’t come reading this blog looking for parenting advice. It only looks like I know what I’m doing because you never see all the edits, corrections, the behind the scenes action. I call myself a guru in the parenting world on the basis that others seem to think we’re doing a great job. We’re gurus. I’m also clueless. I mostly have no idea what I’m doing, why I’m doing it, or if it’ll make things better or worse. In the words of my wife’s Uncle Bud,

If clues were shoes he’d wear clickers on his socks.

P.S. While I’m out looking for clues you can find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Questions I Asked My Kids: Ep 45

The First Questions I Asked My Kids happened February 11, 2016. Since then, I’ve had 44 episodes. That would be 440 questions. Unfairly, that’s how many they have asked me just this evening.

I thought today would be a good day for a throw back Thursday. Here are the 10 questions I asked them 581 days ago. Lets see how they’re answers differ almost 2 years later.

  1. What do you want to be when you grow up?
    Crash: A video game designer or a racecar driver but probably a video game designer
    Bang: Builder and a maid (that hasn’t changed for a long time)
  2. If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
    Crash: I’d have the power to do magic like Harry Potter but not exactly like Harry Potter because when I snap my fingers I could make myself rich
    Bang: Spring arms and Flying
  3. What are the three best things about being you?
    Crash: That I’m different from everybody else, that I have lots of stuffies I like to snuggle and I have a family to love
    Bang: That I get to watch TV, get to have trucks and play, and I love school
  4. Can you name one thing that scares you?
    Crash: Dying and my brother when he jumps out of nowheres
    Bang: Snakes, coyotes, and wolves
  5. What is the most disgusting thing you can think of?
    Crash: My brother when comes downstairs naked
    Bang: When people at school don’t flush the toilet after they poop
  6. What’s something that makes you angry?
    Crash: My brother and when I get crushed in Splatoon (video game)
    Bang: Sometimes you when you send me to my room
  7. What are you good at?
    Crash: Mario Kart, writing stories, reading, science, and snuggling
    Bang: Biking, scootering, squishing crab apples, and hockey and reffing basketball
  8. What animal would you like to be?
    Crash: Fox
    Bang: A giraffe (I’m still waiting for that 22 inch tongue)

  9. What’s the best thing about being a kid?
    Crash: We fit in the treehouse better than dad
    Bang: Get to go to school and get easy things to do like easy math and grown ups have to do the hardest thing in the world
  10. Name two things we should do as a family on the weekend.
    Crash: Watch Harry Potter or gets lots of Pokemon and have a Pokemon tournament
    Bang: Sleep together in your gigantic bed and I’ll sleep next to you and spend time in the living room eating pancakes

57963-quotes-about-stupid-questions

Month in Review: August

What a slow month August was for my poor little blog. I didn’t lose any sleep over it, though. I hope you didn’t either.

August was full of baseball, camping trips, and reflecting back on how the past year went for us. Mostly through video.

Now we’re 11 days into September and the kids are back in school. They return home ravenous so they must be learning. Or they have tapeworm.

12 – The number of times I posted in August. See? Not much happening here. Nothing to see. Move along…

He Told Me Not To – Of the 12 posts, this one was the most viewed with 147. It was a fun story to write about striking out to win. Our three night Camping Trip was second with 47 views. Sunday Share came up third with 41 views.

883 – The number of times my blog was viewed. Coincidentally, this is how many goldfish my kids try to fit in their face at one time. However, while the amount they consume is on a sharp increase, my views are down from 1,063 in July.

564 – The number of visitors my blog recorded. This is equivalent to the number of questions the boys ask before they leave for school. Ironically, this up 15 whole visitors (as opposed to 1/2 visitors).

270 – The number of likes received. This is a superfluous stat, though. With 12 posts this comes to 22.5 likes per post. What’s that mean? It means I wrote 12 posts and got 270 likes. Ain’t no thang…

201 – The number of comments. Now this is where I look when I’m judging my blog. This is 27 comments fewer than July. But it’s all equal in my eyes. This is all you. You and you and you and all 201 of you who left a comment. As I say in every review, it’s your discussions and comments that drive this space. It’s what brings me back. Thank you for all you have said.

48 – The number of countries that visted my blog. That is 45 more countries than I have been to. US. Canada. Costa Rica. I don’t get out much. Do you?

1,056 – The number of followers my blog has collected. Slow and steady wins the race! Thanks to Karen AlmedoraSue Kays, and Changing of Tides for being my newest three followers. Don’t be strangers now. Come ’round whenever you like.

Lastly, is my shout out to the six who left the most comments. There was a tie for first!

Dewy and Dorky Mom Doodles left me 65 comments each. Thanks you two. You rock!
Grubbs-n-Critters was a very close second with 62 comments.
Batting clean-up was A Momma’s View in fourth with 50 comments.
Close behind was Welcome to the Nursery with 45 comments.
Mikealixonline finishing it off with 32 comments.

Think you’ll be on this list next month? Leave me a comment and let the race begin… Thank you to everyone for your stories and quips and quotes. I still find it amazing that you people not only read this gibberish but feel compelled to let me know you read it.

As always, you can also find me on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Now I need to go yell at the TV. My O’s are down by one in the 6th.

images

Sunday Share: Week 36

monkey back

They’re so much cuter when they get along…

There are 365 days in a year.

52 weeks.

We’re on number 36. That leaves 16 weeks until the end of 2017.

15 until Christmas morning. I feel torn posting how many day until Christmas like I usually do. The way Harvey, Irma, and now possibly Jose wreck havoc. There are wildfire burning. There’s flooding around the world. People aren’t looking to Christmas. They’re looking to tomorrow. Recovering what remains. Trying to save what’s most important. Waiting for the storm to arrive, waiting for the storm to blow through, waiting to pick up the pieces.

Yet, I still see news anchors arguing with scientists by asking, “Do you have definitive proof that climate change is the cause of all this?” Nah, three consecutive record strength hurricanes is just coincidence. That’s a rant for a whole post of it’s own…

Stay safe Florida and Caribbean!
The rest of us can do some reading.

Accidental Hipster Mum
Shh… Be quiet and listen to everything 

Europe 2 Australia
Whether there’s a lot to say or nothing at all, together time is the best time…

Dream Big, Dream Often
Have a laugh with some Friday Funnies on a Sunday…

Hopeless Mom Antics
On fear, dragonflies, and running faster…

Fatty McCupcakes
When your asshole jeans tell you the brutal truth…

All In A Dad’s Work
Never know what the kids will say when you ask them a few questions…

Storm on over to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter and you can follow me there, too.

b76cc8aab924d29cc077c66abd49cc3e-kids-funny-so-funny

 

Questions I Asked My Kids

What a crazy, mixed up world we live in. Hurricane Harvey hit Texas. I think Texas brought it on themselves, though, with their whole “Everything’s bigger in Texas”. That was true until the largest recorded hurricane, Hurricane Irma, came crashing through the Carribean and Florida. Then there’s Hurrican Jose lining up and waiting it’s turn after Irma. There are wildfires burning in Montana. And North Korea is setting off Nukes. You know, because there’s not enough in this world that can kill us.

So, in light of all that happening, we send our kids off to school. Education just might be our best defence. As yesterday was the first day of school for many, I asked the boys questions about their day. They were both excited to go. Even better, they were both excited to tell us about their day when they got home. Of course, if you thought their favorite part of their first day of school had anything to do with school you’re gravely mistaken…

1. What was the best part of your first day of school?

Crash: Going outside and playing a game at the end of the day with my class

Bang: Meeting all my new friends

2. What didn’t you like about the first day of school?

Crash: Nothing really…

Bang: Nothing. I liked everything

3. What do you want to learn about in school?

Crash: Science, like experiements and stuff

Bang: Doing science… like make special potions that heal you if you’re getting attacked or murdered

4. What do you already know that you don’t need to learn in school?

Crash: Adding 100 + 40 + 6 because I already know it’s 146.

Bang: Math… like ten frames and stuff

5. What do you like best about your teacher?

Crash: That she’s nice

Bang: That she gives us lots of play time

6. What time should school start?

Crash: 11:00 am

Bang: 8:30 am

7. What time should school end?

Crash: 3:35 pm

Bang: 9:30 am

8. What would be the most awesomest way to go to school?

Crash: Riding a big dragon

Bang: Dirt bike and ride in the woods

9. What book would recommend to others as a must read?

Crash: The Land of Stories The Wishing Spell

Bang: Ain’t Gonna Paint No More

10. What do you want to do this weekend?

Crash: Have a sleepover at Nanny’s

Bang: Have a sleepover in my brother’s bed

Who we’d go back in time to hug, in 6 words

Where else would you find your younger self along side Jesus, Hitler, King Arthur, Audrey Hepburn, and your grandfather but in one of Eli’s 6 word stories. This is an impressive list of hugs. Who would you go back in time to hug?

Coach Daddy

stormtrooper darth vader hug photo credit: Kalexanderson The imperial reunion (square version) via photopin(license)

Behold, the hug.

6 words graphicIs anything in the universe as potentially awkward and comforting as the hug? Humans (or many mammals) have the innate ability to express love or like, congratulations or condolences by simply opening their arms and pressing together their bodies.

I compile a monthly post called 6 Words. Ernest Hemingway inspired it when he said any story can be told in six words. I ask bloggers, friends, strangers, and a few strange blogger friends to respond to a prompt.

Here’s the prompt for August:

View original post 818 more words

Monday Share: Week 35

In exactly 16 weeks it will be Christmas night. The gifts will all be exchanged. Santa will have made his magical appearance and elves will have hitched a ride off their shelf. Maybe there will be snow, this year. Maybe it’ll be 20C (70F) again. Bellies will be stuffed with stuffed turkey. For just one day, all will be right with the world…

But for now, it’s September. The kids backpacks are stuffed like Christmas turkeys with all their back-to-school supplies. They’re all fresh and clean and smelling like their bath bombs from Lush. The youngest is a bit sparkly from his and he loves it. His mother sniffed him and he was furious. He fussed at her, Don’t lick my sparkles off! 

Whether your part of the world is beginning to settle and chill into winter’s sleep or it’s just waking from it’s slumber, sit back and read a post that I forgot to share yesterday because I forgot what day it was…

I think I like the Monday Share better, anyway.

ps. I hope you had an amazing Labor Day weekend!
pps. Let me know down the comments which link you checked out. Thanks a bazillion!

Wonderoak
A runner, a whiner, and $100 bucks unclearly spent, but at least back-to-school shopping got done. Mostly.

Three’s A Herd
When you want to live in the now, but you also need to know what tomorrow brings…

Harsh Reality
When you put in the time, the time gives back…

Damn, Girl! Get Your Shit Together (Thanks to Riddle from the Middle for this little gem)
4 things Millennials might not know…

Tania 2 a Tee
When you’re kids are more excited to return to school than you are…

All In A Dad’s Work
A little rant about the end of summer, back to school, and teacher support…

ppps… feel free to follow me on twitter, instagram, and facebook

1f87ab2c5c2dff5316f051f3e277d18f-social-media-funny-social-media-quotes

The Entitled Millennial

I’m just going to appologize to Millennials right now.

I’m sorry.

I’m about to generalize your generation. Stereotype. I know it’s not all of you, but it certainly is some of you. Hell, even a few of my Generation Xers have the same mentality. We all win. We all deserve everything we want simply because we want it. We will all be successful millionaires. I know it’s not all of you, but I know one of you lives in my house.

Lets start with hats. The basic ball hat with a brim and a logo of your choosing. Functional. Decorative. It can speak for the kind of person you are. I’m a sporty kind of person and show my support for the O’s (damn you Blue Jays for beating us last night). Some show their support for hockey or football, Adidas or Puma, Pokemon or fidget spinners. You can roll the brim a little or you can roll it a lot. Or you can keep as it flat as Tom Brady’s football. I, personally, think it looks a bit ridiculous and I have to restrain myself from bending brims to their proper shape. I show the same self restraint when I see pants that hang too low. I refrain from pulling them up and putting a belt on them. You can imagine my shock when my 10 year old showed me his new Pokemon hat that his grandmother bought him and the brim was straighter than an uncooked spaghetti noodle. I rolled it. He had a conniption and stormed off and straightened it again. His mother came home from work and had the same reaction. He wears it rolled now. Just like it’s supposed to be. Want a Millennial? Let him wear it straight.

Okay… so straight brimmed hats really aren’t that big of a deal. Sure they look foolish to us Gen Xers, but it certainly won’t change the world. You know what will? Millennials who expect to get exactly what they want simply because they want it. A job, millions of dollars, more money for doing less work, a participation award. Or as we call it in this house, “The Gimmies”. He wants wants wants but won’t do do do. We’ve never put up with that attitude here, yet it runs rampant in the first born. This attitude can change the world more than a flat brimmed hat could ever dream of changing. The world is still a good place despite all that is being reported in the media. However, if the trend of gimmie gimmie gimmie instead of give give give continues, the world will change as fast as the climate. You can’t deny that.

We’ve been trying to demonstrate this giving attitude. I give blood and I take the boys with me to see it. I explain to them that every donation could help up to three people. We take them out to the community clean up to beautify our town. I mow the neighbor’s yard because she can’t. DW volunteers on the park committee and during election time. We both will shovel the neighbor’s driveway. Yet the attitude of entitlement continues.

I certainly don’t confuse this Millennial attitude with not caring. Sure, he may not care that his garbage can’t find the garbage can in the house. He may not care that the clean clothes I just washed and folded are now thrown across his bedroom floor. He may not care that he did a poor job on the chore I asked him to do. Half assing it would be an improvement. He may not care that his brim is too straight.

However, he cares deeply for others. I’ve witnessed him helping autistic children keep their belongings together on field trips. I’ve heard from parents and teachers that he helps the children with special needs exit the building during fire drills and the alarms are overwhelming. I’ve seen him be a bus buddy, making sure his assigned 5 year old first timer makes it to the right classroom when they get to school. He makes sure they get off at the right stop when they come home. He’s even fessed up to breaking a toy that another child was blamed for breaking.

It’s clearly not his compassion that needs exercise, it’s his entitlement. Entitlement far outweighs responsibility. If we can make the latter more important than the former, we can make the world an even better place. It’s a hard lesson to teach and an even harder lesson to learn.

Roll that brim, pull up your pants, and follow me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Untitled

See You In September

It’s gone.

It just walked right out.

August is no more. Summer is packing it’s bags and Atumn is moving in. I’m okay with that, though. Fall is my favorite. Warm days. Cool nights. The window open. Me cocooned in blankets. DW freezing because I’ve got all the warmth in my cocoon. Fall is fantastic.

Fall brings baseball post-season, football, and all things pumpkin spice. My Orioles are contesting for a wild card spot. While I’m not all that into pumpkin spice, I could eat my weight in pumpkin pie. Dump a tub of whipped cream on top and I’m in my glory.

September isn’t just for ball games and pumpkins, though. September is also for the return of school days. While challenging, the rewards are phenomenal. Getting the kids to bed when they’re used to to summer schedule bedtimes is like hostage negotiations. If you offer too little they’ll refuse slumber. Offer too much and you won’t be able to keep your end of the bargin. They will remember everything you offer too so don’t even think about sweetening the deal in hopes they’ll forget. It’ll be the first thing they ask for in the morning. If you can’t deliver they’ll never go to bed again. Ever.

Besides bedtime, there is also the joy of back-to-school shopping. I get more than a little giddy when I see aisles and aisles of back-to-school supplies. Brand new pencils with no teeth marks. Markers with all their caps on tight. Paper so crisp and clean waiting for a math problem or an essay or notes on history, science, or passed to friend asking them if they can sit together at lunch. Folders and binders in more colors than a rainbow can offer. There are fresh, clean glue sticks not yet dried out, full of glitter and dirt and half eaten.

I know the back-to-school supply list can seem a bit archaic. It can also get a bit pricey. I’ve seen various parents rant about how expensive it can be. They question the supplies that are asked for. While I can’t speak for all teachers, I can speak for myself and the ones I know. We don’t ask for things we don’t need. But as one mother put it in her rant, “You want a microwave for your classroom, I’ll get you a microwave! Here, I’ll get you a pillow, too!” She was thankful teachers took her kids for the day. Parents seem to be thankful for school to start again because it means their kids aren’t at home driving them to Crazyville, Insanity for what they think is a good time. What they forget is the flip side of the coin. The teacher doesn’t have just their kid. They have 20-30 other kids, too.

If you’re the kind of parent who understands the plight of teachers, slip in a gift card for pumpkin spice latte or a medium large bucket o’coffee with those back-to-school supplies because you’re over the Walmart excited for school be to back. And because it’s not just the kids who are going back to school.

You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram