R and S are for Go Ask Your Father…

There’s a twofer going on tonight. However, it’s only one post.

is for research. I can answer the boys questions without Google. What I can’t do is answer them thoroughly. If you can’t explain it simply enough for a 6 year old to understand you don’t understand it well enough. So I turn to Google to refine and finish my explanations. I know that’s not official research, but it’s good enough for now. As long as I use trustworthy sites.

Since I love their questions, I pray they continue to ask questions their entire life. Learning is essential and questions are proof they are trying. S is for students. Students of education. Students of life. Students for life.

 

1. What is cholesterol?

I had to admit defeat on this one. All I could them them is that it’s stuff in our blood and there two kinds, a good kind and a bad kind. Now I know the bad kind is LDL – low density lipoprotein. It’s sticky and is the stuff that clings to artery walls, reducing blood flow to the heart, and causes heart attacks. The only thing that can stop a bad cholesterol with a gun is a good cholesterol with gun. HDL – high density lipoprotein strolls the blood stream looking for LDLs. Once it finds it, it latches on and delivers the baddie to the liver (the judge who sentences the baddie to jail). The liver then filters it as a waste product and removes it from your body all together.

2. What is it when shadows combine without touching?

That’s kind of a confusing question, isn’t it? How can two things combine without touching? That’s like putting your clothes in the washing machine and they never get wet. You can do this experiment and see it for yourself. Just hold your hands up to a wall to cast two shadows. Bring your hands together slowly and the two shadows will touch just before your hands do. The shadows will be connected yet your hands are not. Thanks to Vsauce on YouTube, we know this is called The Shadow Blister Effect. I highly recommend the video. It has to do with the anatomy of a shadow. The umbra is the part of the shadow where the light is fully blocked. The prenumbra is a partial blocking (like twilight, the sun has set, but it’s still a bit light). When the two prenumbras overlap it creates a significantly greater darkness which we perceive as the combination of shadows even though the two objects aren’t touching.

3. Why do we get blisters?

You got a blister because you wore your rainboots with no socks. Put socks on before it gets worse. There are several causes of blisters. Heat, friction, and chemicals are just three of the main culprits. A blister is our skin’s way of defending itself. A layer of liquid forms between the top layers of skin to protect the tissue below it. It is best to keep the blister as long as you can. But if you’re like me and love bubble wrap, it’ll be too tempting to pop your skin bubble. That bubble is allowing the tissue to heal without the risk of infection. So if you do pop your bubble, clean it and wrap it up.

4. Can I get Facebook?

Hold on… I’ll go ask Zuckerburg. Sorry. He said awe hell no. Sure, it’s a great tool to keep in touch with family and friends. It’s also a great tool to kill some time, whether it be a few minutes or a few days. It’s also a great place to get #FakeNews and other things unimportant to our daily lives. Though, if he did get the FB he would just have a few family members on so it would probably be safe until he went exploring for more. So, no. The 10 year old will not be on Facebook for a while, yet.

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Q is for…

QI would love to say Q is for quiet. It’s a rare occurrence around here.  A lit match lasts longer the quiet in our house. Unless it’s after bedtime. Those 2 hours after the kids are asleep is Mommy and Daddy time. We’re not playing referee. We’re not cooking or cleaning. The kids think we always stay up late and drink wine when in fact we stay up a bit, watch adult shows and eat snacks.

But Q won’t be for quiet today. Just like last year for Q, it falls on a Thursday. Anyone familiar with this space knows that Thursday for Questions. These questions are from April 20th of last year. Lets see how their answers differ…

1. What’s your favorite thing to do in the summer?

Crash: Go to the beach
Bang: Use the sprinkler with all my friends!

2. What do sharks eat?

Crash: Fish, people sometimes if they think you are a seal, and seals
Bang: Fish and krill and shark food

3. What animal would it be fun to be?

Crash: An eagle
Bang: A mouse

4. Why would it be fun to be that animal?

Crash: a) because eagles are cool and b) because you can you fly with your wings
Bang: because you get to dig in people’s walls and live in there

5. What would you like to learn more about?

Crash: How to draw
Bang: Tigers

6. What’s the best thing about you?

Crash: I make friends easily
Bang: That I know stuff past grade 1

7. What’s the best thing about Dad?

Crash: He’s bald and you do most of the chores around the house
Bang: Not much, just one thing. You let me play on your phone because I know your password to play Candy Crush

8. What’s the best thing about Mom?

Crash: She’s losing weight and volunteers for a lot of stuff
Bang: She snuggles me

9. What do you want to be famous for doing?

Crash: Writing books or taking photographs
Bang: Running because I’m really fast

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

Crash: Author or photographer or the good looking pop start that everyone loves
Bang: Dog washer!

 

L is for…

L

When you have two teachers for parents, L can only mean one thing.

Lots and lots and lots of Learning.

Fortunately, the boys are so full of questions there’s more learning happening around here than… than… well, lets just say there’s lots of learning.

1. Why are scabs itchy?

Boys are hard on their bodies. It’s the only one they get so they need to get as much use out of it as they can. Crash fell at school earlier this week. Apparently there was some invisible ice and he slipped and fell on it while playing tag with his friends. Now he has a nice little-ish scab healing on his knee and it’s itchy. Why? Because when the cells covering the wound meet in the middle they start pulling on each other to close the wound. This frat house like tug-o-war causes mechanical stress and activated the itch nerves. Your spinal cord, which in control of your nervous system, sends the signal to scratch that itch. But if we scratch that itch we rip the scab off and we’re right back to where we started when we got the banged up knee in the first place. So now a war rages between our spinal cord wanting scratch and our brain telling us our spinal cord is a liar.

2. Can you die from drinking too much alcohol?

The boys know DW and I enjoy a drink of wine now and then. Sometimes we’ll have friends over for boardgame night and have a few drinks. We always drink responsibly. But, yes, you can die from too much of it. It’s called Alcohol poisoning. Except the 6 year old insisted that that wasn’t the right term for it. He said it was an “itis” (eye-tiss) word. After a minute of thinking he informed us that the correct word was drunkitis. Alcohol poisoning can happen when any substance containing alcohol is consumed intentionally or not. It occurs most frequently in binge drinkers. This is the consumption of 5 serving of alcohol in two hours for men or four for women. Symptoms include…

  • Confusion
  • Vomiting
  • Seizures
  • Slow breathing (less than eight breaths a minute)
  • Irregular breathing (a gap of more than 10 seconds between breaths)
  • Blue-tinged skin or pale skin
  • Low body temperature (hypothermia)
  • Passing out

Please, please, drink responsibly. Another way drinking too much can kill you is if you get behind the wheel and drive. PSA – Don’t drink and drive.

3. Can I go play outside?

YES! YES! YES! GO! GO! GO! We still have snow on the ground. Actually, it snow a bit this morning. This winter is bullshit and needs to go. Put on your boots and get going. Of course, once he was out there he started digging a hole in the muddy yard. Dude, go up in the back field and dig a hole. Unless you were planning on filling it with ash and kicking your little brother in the ash hole. That wouldn’t be cool either. Today was a screen free video game free day so going outside was really the only other option. Best. App. Ever!

4. Can boys have babies?

No. And no, babies don’t come out of our penis… well, not infant babies like the ones that come of mommies. Bang asked this one this evening and we explained that only girls can have babies. DW took it one step further and told him that half comes from daddies and half comes from mommies. I sat back and listened, laughing my ass off because I knew what was coming next.

“So half comes from dad and half come from mom and what? You kiss and put the baby together?”

DW opened this can of worms so I had full intention of letting her get the lid back on it.

Yes. That’s exactly what happens. Then he asked about the babies coming out and asked about babies coming out of penises. No. That’s not what happens because girls don’t have penises. “Oh, yeah. They have innie penises.”

Then I told him about chromosomes and that if daddies give mommies an X then they’ll have a baby girl and if daddy gives mommy a Y, they’ll have a boy. This effectively ended the possibly too indepth sex ed conversation.

Have you had to explain babies to your little ones? How did you handle it? The whole truth or just enough to satisfy their curiosity?

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K is for… #AtoZChallenge

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Karma… the boys have already had the mom curse sworn upon them. One day they will have kids who behave just like them. Of course, this means I get grandkids who behave just like my kids are right now. Guess who’s not babysitting!

Kidding… I’ll teach them all kinds of fun Grampa stuff. Chocolate cake for breakfast. Flipping their parents the bird behind their back. Good practical jokes.

But this is Thursday and Thursdays are for questions. We haven’t answered any questions for a couple weeks. The boys were asking about them last night, too.

Today, K is for the knowledge we obtain by questioning our wee ones. Click here if you want to read their original answers. Some are strangely similar.

1. What might aliens from outer space look like?

Crash: Bald with big green eyes, anywhere from 2 to 7 feet tall
Bang: LORL they look like the Toy Story aliens
DW: I’m sure they look nothing like TV makes them out to be

2. If you could build anything in the backyard, what would you build?

Crash: Treehouse that has electricity so we can play video games and have lights because it’s a huge treehouse
Bang: A big box with speakers in it so you can play Temperature by Sean Paul
DW: A pool

3. If you had to leave the house in an emergency, what 3 things would you take?

Crash: Monkey, Alexa, and all my clothes
Bang: Penguin, obviously my bed, and food
DW: My pendant, the external hard drive, and nevermind the rest because I don’t like this question

4. What’s the best thing about growing up?

Crash: You get to live in your own house and you get unlimited screen time
Bang: You get paid for your job!
DW: Staying up late

5. What word makes you laugh?

Crash: supercalifragilisticexialidocious
Bang: *insert eye roll* Things make me laugh, not words
DW: You make me laugh

6. We just bought a droid. What should we name it?

Crash: RECT (it’s all of our initials)
Bang: Elticoe
DW: Jeeves

7. What would you do if you were Dad?

Crash: Play on my tablet all day and make mom do the chores
Bang: Eat all my kids candy
DW: I’d nap on the couch and play with myself

8. What would you do if you were mom?

Crash: Get an awesome job that would make us rich
Bang: Snuggle with my kids and have a belly fart (blow raspberries on bellies) contest to see who could make the loudest fart
DW: Same thing I do everyday! Can I be a rich mom, instead and go on vacation?

9. If you could change anything about school, what would you change?

Crash: I would make math class easier
Bang: No writing, no reading, no music and just gym gym gym and play play play
DW: I’d put the focus back where it belongs… on students and teaching

10. Did you have any dreams?

Crash: As a matter of fact, yeah I did. My teacher asked if we had a dream and my friend and I had the exact same dream. This guy who looked like a vampire with hair down to his chest and trees with creepy faces grabbed us. Piper, our parrot, was in it, too.
Bang: Yeah… it was about flying, pooping ponies that go flap flap flap thsthsths (sound effect)
DW: A couple nights ago I had a dream about an eagle…

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F is for Go Ask Your Father…

FThe “F” word. No, that “F” word. Though, it’s always a possibility.

Today, F is for Friday. Not only is it the second greatest day of the week ever invented, but it’s also day we answer some questions. We get bombarded by questions like statues get bombarded by pigeons.

1. How much longer will Piper be alive?

If you’ve never met Piper, she is our Quaker parrot. She talks a little bit, but only when she thinks no one is listening. Hey. Hi. Hello. Pretty birdie. Good bird. I love you. Give mum a kiss. She imitates the vacuum, water drops, and barks at the neighbors’ dogs. We acquired her in 2006 from a pet store that was giving her away. Someone was moving and couldn’t take her with them and ask the pet store to find her a home. She was free. When we got her we were told she was six which puts her birthday sometime in 2000. We just go by the date we got her. That makes her 18. Quakers can live to be 35 years old. For those of you who suck at math, that mean she has 17 years left (assuming she makes it to 35). The larger parrots, macaws and African greys, can live 80-100 years. Which is nothing compared to Adwaita, an Aldabra giant tortoise, who lived to be 255 years old. My grandmother was there for its birth.

2. What does fire look like in space?

Goodness, gracious, great balls of fire! Technically, fire needs oxygen and space is severely lacking in oxygen. And don’t try to use the sun as an argument for fire in space. The sun is powered by nuclear fusion, not an 864,575 mile wide bon fire.  However, if you happen to be on a space ship (or station) that has oxygen to burn, you will see that fire simply forms a ball around a match head. There is no up in space so the flame cannot form its picturesque tear drop shape because if there is no up, rising is impossible.

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Left -space match Right – Earth match

3. Why are some words “bad”?

The “B” word (bedtime). The “S” word (school time). The “C” word (church time). All bad words in their own right. But these aren’t the bad bad words. One of my favorite science channels on YouTube discussed this. You can watch it here if you have a spare 10 minutes. Essentially, these “bad” words stem from the Germanic languages of the lower class. They are bad because they are crude, inappropriate slang words describing something vulgar, unpleasant, gross, or feared. This is why some words are worse than others. The worse it’s depiction the worse it’s level of badness.

4. Can we stay up late?

Considering it is now 8 pm and you are just starting to get ready for bed, the answer is yes. It’s Friday, the sun was shining so you got to say out until 7:30. That’s a whole hour later than usual. Since your mother and I want to watch a movie this evening (Lion) we would like to get you to bed. There’s some wine that needs to be rescued, too. I recorded Gremlins so we can watch that tomorrow. Then you’ll know what you look like when you don’t get enough sleep. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to get these a**holes to b*d before they turn into gremlins.

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Go Ask Your Father: The Lightning Round

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I’m currently sitting here listening to a kitchen concert live on Facebook. A friend of ours is a wicked guitar player and singer and likes to put on “concerts” live from his kitchen. He takes requests and just plays for a while. Good times.

Tonight, I thought I’d change up the Go Ask Your Father a bit and make it a lightning round. This is the little questions they ask that requires little thought, no Google, and minimal explanation. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of them every day. You have to be careful answering these questions because it could lead to more questions. Then you might as well open the hornets’ nest.

1. Who pissed themselves?

*Back story: Driving home from school, I was telling DW that the teacher I was subbing for was there in the morning but left before 8:45 because she wasn’t feeling well. She had been sick the day before, too. DW said she “She came back too soon. She pushed herself too hard.” From the backseat we hear, “Who pissed themselves?”

No buddy, we said she PUSHED herself. We laughed and laughed the whole way home.

2. Where’s our radio stick?

It didn’t take us long to figure out that “radio stick” meant antenna. That would be the thing on top of our truck that has a beach ball stuck to it. It’s our way of keeping summer in our heart all through winter.

3. Can I go on my tablet?

Giv’er. Just make sure you set a tablet timer on Alexa (Amazon Echo) so you know when your half hour is up. Oh. You already had an hour? No tablet for you. Go find something else to do. You may throw a temper tantrum. It won’t get you more tablet time, though.

4. Can I earn more tablet time?

Of course. Your toys in the basement need to be put away. That’ll earn you 10 minutes. The stair up and the stairs down need to be vacuumed (up to the upstairs and down to the basement). That’ll get you 5 minutes each. Emptying the dishwasher will get you another 15 minutes. Correctly tell me how many minutes that is and the tablet is all yours.

5. Why do we have to be quiet in church for 2 days?

Because if you embarrass me being loud I will embarrass you ten times worse later. We were quiet yesterday and today entering and exiting because yesterday was Jesus’s last supper and today is the day Jesus died so it’s a somber time. Somber means sad, my favorite 10 year old.

6. What’s for supper?

Usually, I’ll tell them whale tongue (pork tenderloin) or boiled worms and slug sauce (spaghetti) or alligator legs (shake-n-bake chicken) or elephant heart (roast beef) Anything to gross them out, really. What’d I’d like to say is, “Use your eyes, my dear child. It’s on the stove.” 6 out of 7 days I enjoy cooking. That 7th day, though… I’m tired of keeping them alive. If they’re that hungry, they’ll find something. Usually we opt for eating out. Less mess, no cooking, happy dad. You know the saying, happy dad, happy… nevermind, there is no saying.

7. How many cookies can I have?

Like my mama told me, 2. You can have one for each hand because then your hands are full. In house full of cookie monsters they will fill their hands, empty their hands, then refill. I try to limit them so I can get my fill after they go to bed. I hide the Cadbury mini eggs in the veggie drawer. No one finds them there.

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Questions I Asked My Wife

I haven’t done a survey for a few weeks now. Since this evening was too busy to ask the kids questions, I’ll ask DW some questions. I’ll answer them, too. We’re all caught up on our shows now. We watch The Voice, The Good Doctor, Caught, This Is Us, Grey’s Anatomy, and the newest show, Station 19. Feel free write your own post and ask your own significant other these questions. I’d love to hear the answers!

1. Who’s your TV crush?

DW: Jackson Avery, Allan Hawco,
Me: Jo (Grey’s Anatomy), Beth (This Is Us)

 

 

2. If you weren’t a teacher, what would you be?

DW: “An ordinary old housewife like You is what I told my mother when I as a kid.
Me: Adventure tour guide or a ninja warrior gym trainer

3. What’s one thing you want to change about yourself?

DW: To be more patient
Me: To be permanently bald and not need to shave

4. What’s one thing you’d change about me?

DW: Only one thing?
Me: I’d straighten your toes

5. If you could get away with one crime, would you do it? What crime would you commit?

DW: Probably not. I could use the extra cash, but I’d feel too guilty.
Me: Yes. I’d rob a bank.

6. What song would you sing for your “The Voice” blind audition?

DW: As I Lay Me Down by Sophie B. Hawkins or The First Cut Is the Deepest by Sheryl Crow
Me: Macklemore’s Glorious 

7. What would be your idea of an ideal date with me?

DW: Dinner, drink, and dancing at a Three Finger Shot show or a moonlight trip to Assateague Island
Me: A trip to the beach (Assateague) in summer for dinner then stargazing and camping

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8. Who is your celebrity doppelganger?

DW: Katie Holmes
Me: Dwayne Johnson except with blue eyes

 

 

9. Is there a memory of me that makes you laugh?

DW: There are lots! That time you nearly took a header into the wall. I nearly pissed myself
Me: That time I made you spill water on yourself in the truck and you called me an arsehole which caused Bang to say “Yeah, don’t be an arsehole.” which caused the 9 year old to say “Great. Now you’ve got him saying arsehole.”

10. What’s your Patronus?

DW: Eagle
Me: Wolf (or perhaps a monkey)

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Go Ask Your Father: Diamonds, Baseballs, Girls, and Skin Colors

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1. How are diamonds formed?

Not by Superman super squeezing coal in his superman super fist. In fact, no coal is harmed in the making of diamonds. Coal is the compressed remains of dinosaur era plants. Diamonds are much, much older. They date back to when my parents met in college. Both are made of coal, just like that graphite in your pencil. It’s the way they formed that sets them apart. Diamonds form deep in the earth’s mantle about 90 miles down. Down there temperatures hover around a balmy 2,000F and the pressure is about 725,000 psi. The only other place to find these conditions are in my bed when I cocoon myself in the blankets. The reason diamonds are clear while graphite (both made of carbon) is black is the way their molecules bond. Diamond molecules bond tightly (called a sigma bond) in a three dimensional point (pyramid) – think toddler strapped in a 5 point harness car seat. This tight bonding doesn’t allow for the absorption of light, hence its clarity.  Meanwhile, graphite carbon molecules bond more loosely (called a pi bond) on flat planes – think toddler on a leash. This loose bonding allows light to be absorbed, hence, it’s black.

2. What are baseballs made of?

Summertime sunshine, peanuts, and the sounds of a crowd going wild when the Yankees and/or Red Sox lose. I, too, wondered as a kid what was inside those wonderful spheres. I found an old one and cut it open. What I found was a whole lotta string. It felt like I could have wrapped the whole stadium with the amount of string I unwound. In the middle of all that string was small rubber ball. What I didn’t discover at that time is that inside the rubber ball is cork. I knew players had tried to cork their bats. They’d hollow them out and fill it with cork then cap it to make it look solid again. This made the bat lighter and was highly illegal so I never thought there’d be cork in the ball. “How It’s Made” did a great episode on nearly exactly how they’re made. I may have watched it a dozen times, it’s that neat. A cork is surrounded by a rubber ball. Around the rubber ball is wound three different kinds of string (helps the ball keep its shape after being smashed by a bat). On the string are two figure eight shaped pieces of leather that get hand stitched with 108 red stitches. The factory had 350 workers making 8-10,000 balls a day! That’s a good thing because a single game uses an average of 65 baseballs. That’s 177,450 balls per season! And that’s just the MLB!

3. Can girls be on the Orioles?

I’ll just start with a quote from Jack Moore of Vice Sports

The question, then, isn’t when women will earn a spot on the diamond next to men. They have been earning those spots for over 100 years. The question is when the men barring the gates will finally stand aside and let them in.

Women have played in the majors before. If you’re familiar with A League of Their Own you’ll know they WERE the majors during WWII. Prior to that, women often made appearances on the diamond with men. Lefty, Jackie Mitchell, playing for the Chattanooga Lookouts took the mound against the Yankees in an exhibition game. She struck out the first two batters. Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Maybe you’ve heard of them? Toni Stone played in the Negro League against the likes of Willie Mays and Ernie Banks. In 1953 she was the 4th best hitter. Back in those days a woman’s place was still in the home. Women who attempted to do what men did were shamed by both homemakers and men. After WWII and the merging of of the Majors and the Negro League the men claimed full possession of the majors. In 1952 women were officially banned from Major League Baseball. In 1992 it was repealed. For almost 20 years there has been no rule against women playing in the MLB. However, just like in many other places, there are just men standing in the way.

4. Why do some people have dark skin?

It just depends on which crayon you choose to color them. We all know (or are about to find out) that our skin color is due to a pigment in our skin called melanin. There are two types of melanin, pheomelanin which appears as reds and yellows and eumelanin which is browns to blacks. While darker skinned people produce more eumelanin and lighter skinned people produce more pheomelanin this isn’t the main factor for your color. People’s melanin particles differ in size and number. More and larger melanin particles equals darker skin. There is an evolutionary advantage to skin color, though. Melanin protects our skin from harmful radiation. Those with darker skin reflect more UV/UVA light to better prevent sunburn and skin cancer. However, lighter skin tones absorb more UV/UVA, which aids in making vitamin D. None of us are exactly the same color, no matter what race we are and all the colors are so beautiful. However, we are so much more than the color of our skin.

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Questions I Asked My Kids: Ep 65

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Today’s your lucky day, folks. It’s a double post kind of day. I was going to write about our trip last night after the boys were in bed. I just didn’t have it in me, though. I got’er done today, though. And since today is Thursday, ’round here it’s also known as Questionday, there are some questions to ask. Let’s see what their creative minds come up with today.

Here we go again…

1.What was your favorite part of our trip?

Crash: Probably shopping and the Body Museum
Bang: The Body museum… No! Everything!

2. What was your favorite part of Body World RX?

Crash: The hearts and the smoking part
Bang: The guy split right down in half so we could see his brain

3. If you could give one gift to every child in the world, what would you give them?

Crash: A shelter and lots of money
Bang: Diggers

4. What do you want to be famous for?

Crash: Playing video games or collecting Pokemon
Bang: Painting (I’m already famous for that because I paint a lot)

5. What does your name mean?

Crash: Awesomeness
Bang: Truck

6. What three words best describe you?

Crash: Funny, Cool, Good looking
Bang: Smart, Awesome, Gangsta

7. Did anything make you laugh today?

Crash: Yeah, my friend at lunch kept making ridiculous faces
Bang: Yeah, when me and my brother were wrestling, he took me down and I giggled

8. Did you help anyone today?

Crash: I helped my friend because she accidentally knocked over her pencil case and everything exploded onto the floor.
Bang: No, because no one needed help.

9. If you could choose a new name for yourself, what name would you pick?

Crash: Pickachu
Bang: Logan

10. What food would make the grossest ice cream flavor?

Crash: Ham
Bang: Strawberry, orange, chocolate chips, lemon with vanilla ice cream

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