Go Ask Your Father: Tetanus, Climate, Probiotics, and Poop

My Orioles are just 49.5 games back from first place. I’ve seen better games from little leaguers. I got a new ball glove for my birthday and I’m tempted to try out. I think they need my help. in 1911 they lost 111 games that season. With just 37 more losses, they can tie that record. There are 43 games left so don’t count them out yet.

Now, if you’ll excuse us, it’s hot and we have a friend with a pool before we leave for Crash’s ball game that is over an hour away. Happy Tuesday (or here, aka Garbage Day) everyone!

1. What is a tetanus shot for?

It’s for the wound you’re about receive from swinging around that piece of wood that has two nails rustier than the Oriole’s bats (they’re currently 49 games back). This where the can of worms was opened. Does it hurt? How much does it hurt? What’s tetanus? My goal is to always answer their questions has honestly, simply as possible, and sufficiently enough to not raise more questions. I failed miserably here. Tetanus is caused by bacteria found in dirt and animal poop. This bacteria forms spores that are highly immune to heat and drugs. They are the Jason Borne of the bacteria world. Tetanus causes painful muscles contractions, often in the jaw and neck. Imagine labor contractions in your face. No thanks. I’ll pass. And there’s no cure for it. You may need to be put on life support until the disease runs its course. Lesson? Keep your tetanus vaccine up to date.

2. What is climate?

It’s that thing a certain president and his following of “deniers” don’t believe in. Though, to be fair they don’t believe that it’s changing. Canada is known for it’s cold weather. However, for the past six weeks we’ve had little rain and temperatures in the 90’s. For two weeks the temps were near or over 100F! Soon there will be palm trees and coconuts in Nova Scotia. Anyway, climate is different from weather in that weather is the day to day forecast while climate is over a longer period of time. Neil DeGrass Tyson has a great two minute explanation here. As the climate changes, so does the weather. There’s so much that can be effected and none of it is particularly good. Colder temperatures in winter mean less snow which means less ground water. Warmer temperatures mean more sickness. It could mean longer droughts. Worse floods. Stronger hurricanes. Melting ice caps and warmer oceans. Anyone who has had to flush a pet fish knows how sensitive fish can be to water temperature change.

3. What are probiotics?

They are biotics that get paid for what they do. They are pros. Like the NFL, NHL, MLB, MLS, NBA, and teachers. In the world of good guys and bad guys, probiotics are the superheroes. Captain America: Civil War was really about the microorganisms in our guts duking it out with the E. coli. These healthy, live bacteria keep our immune system strong and our digestive tract clean. In our time of antibiotics and antibacterial soaps and lotions, we also need to remember that we’re killing the good guys too. Imagine the Avengers fighting Thanos then Superman and Batman swoop in and just kill everyone.

4. Why’s my poop green.

Yellow, let it mellow. Brown flush it down. But what if it’s green? When you are summoned to the bathroom by a seven year old (or younger) it could be for any number of reason. This time it was see the color of poop. I didn’t take a picture, but believe me when I tell you it was the color of Crayola’s meadow green. This happened to us once before when we ate cookies made by Crayola. They came out the same color they went in. Anyway, Bang’s poop wasn’t green from eating too many leafy greens, I can promise you that. It was also wasn’t caused by anal fissures. So it must have just been a hiccup in his digestive tract somewhere. The most likely culprit is that his intestines moved the food along too quickly resulting in the bile pigment not being broken down in the stool to its normal brown color. Either way, it was nothing to lose our shit over so we just laughed and flushed it down.

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Questions I Asked My Kids: The Rorschach Edition

Here’s something a little different. The Rorschach test. Administered to my two kids. Before you scroll down to their answers, take a look at them yourself first. See what you can see then compare it to what they saw. Then after you read their perspectives, see if you can see what they saw.

And when you’re done looking at these inkblots, check out my pictures on Instagram. (Follow me for completely-made-up-imaginary bonus points)

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Crash: I see a castle with windows. I also see a three eyed monster eating an apple.

Bang: It looks like a tank with dots all over it. It also looks like a big scorpion monster.

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Crash: I see what looks like two dog heads with a butterfly or some sort of bug in the middle

Bang: It looks like a monster with four eyes.

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Crash: It looks like a pirate ship. Or a face with a Ninja Turtle mask. I also see a super tall Batman that has a mask that’s way to big for his face.

Bang: It looks like a pirate ship. Or a space ship shooting missiles.

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Crash: I see five faces. And what looks like an animal of some sort. Like a horse.

Bang: It looks like two goldfish swimming away from a monster that shot cannonballs.

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Crash: I looks like a giant with a boomerang in each hand and he’s sitting on a stool.

Bang: Looks like a transformer that transforms into an 18 wheeler that has rockets to make it fly and fire coming out of it.

Questions I Asked My Kids

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See more photos on my Twitter

This may be the longest day in the northern hemisphere, but this is the shortest list of questions to date.

We’ve been busy. Today DW and I chaperoned a field trip of 45 5th graders to The highland Village. It’s a living museum representing about 150 years of Scottish history, covering the time just before they moved to Cape Breton Island to the Mid 1900’s. It was great to talk to people in character, ask questions and see just how much life changed for them over that time. From cooking over an open fire in the middle of their dirt floor stone hut to a cast iron wood stove that closely resembles today’s stoves. The kids were interested and were asking all kinds of questions.

My favorite question was asked of a character in the stone hut who represented a time around 1800 in the Highlands of Scotland. “Do you know what Fortnite is?” Without missing a beat the character, a lady, responded with, “It’s a measure of time, 2 weeks.” It was great to see them stay in character.

1. What are three things you want to do this summer?
Crash: Make YouTube videos, visit cousins, and have my birthday
Bang: Go to the beach, play with the sprinkler on the trampoline, and sleep

2. What’s something to do this summer that we’ve never done before?
Crash: Play the FortNite laser tag
Bang: Fly on a plane

3. What would be the funniest gift to give Crash for his birthday?
Crash: Toilet paper and pile of poo
Bang: Poop in a bag and put it in a present box!

4. We are going to start a new country, what should we name it?
Crash: Rhymania
Bang: Afflick

5. What would be the first law we make in our new country?
Crash: Technology must be used at all times
Bang: You’re only allowed to speak with a British accent.

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Go Ask Your Father: Circles, Diamonds, Electricity, and Boobs

Today we host a birthday party. I love parties. Mostly because I love playing with all the kids. However, there’s one aspect of the party I don’t quite understand. The treat bag at the end. Who invented this nonsense? At no other party do we give our guests a loot bag afterwards. I understand it’s kind of a thank you for coming to my birthday party and bringing a present. However, we just provided entertainment, food, drinks, and cake. We provide a treat bag at the end, but, in your opinion, is it necessary?

What’s the difference between a circle and an ellipse?

First, do you know how farmers make circular fields so perfect? They use a protractor! To truly understand the difference between these two flat, round shapes it helps to understand how they’re made. To make a circle, you need one center point and a line around it that is the same distance away from that point all the way around. To make an ellipse, you need two points, neither of which is in the center. They’re called foci. Every point along the line of a circle is the same distance from the center as every other point. However, in an ellipse, every point on the line is the same distance as the sum of the distances to the foci. And if you say foci enough it sounds like you forgot how to swear properly.

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What’s the difference between a rhombus and diamond?

What girl wants a 2 carat rhombus engagement ring? Bang had been studying shapes in class. Hence the reason for the shape questions today.  It’s how you tell a vet from a noob. In elementary school, to keep things simple, kids call everything that’s not a square or rectangle a diamond. If it has straight sides, whether they’re all the same length or not, and no right angles (all left angles, haha) it must be a diamond. A rhombus is a special kind of parallelogram (shape with opposite sides that are parallel). A rhombus has all sides the same length like a square, but none of its angles are 90 degrees. Its opposite angles are equal though. Also, if you draw lines connecting its opposite angles, they will form a right angle in the center. Here is a really neat website where you can play with a rhombus. Diamond, however, is more of a vague term. The sides of a diamond don’t have to be parallel or equal, similar to a kite. It just needs to not have right angles or form right angles when a line is drawn between opposite corners. Both a rhombus and a diamond know that it’s hip to be square.

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How does a magnet go through a wire to make electricity?

I’m sorry. I can’t look at that GIF without giggling like 7th grader. If you know anything about electrons you’ll know they typically move randomly, much like the AD/HD kid with no meds. I know this, because I have one. However, in magnets, they don’t move randomly, they all move the same direction. Sort of, anyway. The north end electrons spin one direction and the south end spins the other. This is why opposite poles attract. Anyway, when a magnet moves through a coil of wire it drags the electrons in the wire with it. We all know when electrons flow we get electricity. If you use an ammeter (like in that funny GIF) you can see which direction the electricity is flowing. Also, you can see why it’s called an alternating current.

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 Do your boobs stay off forever?

If you’re caught up on the previous episodes of Go Ask Your Father, you’ll know that DW went for a mammogram. It has since come back clear. However, at the time of the appointment a certain 6 year old (turning 7 tomorrow) was full of questions. First it was  “What’s a mammogram?” Last week featured “What if they find cancer?”. The answer to that was double mastectomy, which then had to be explained that essentially means she’ll have her boobs cut off. Which leads us to this week’s question. Yes, they will stay off forever. There’s no boob transplant. There’s no removing the cancer and putting them back on. Ain’t no way she’s going to be breast feeding with them any more. However, we have come across some fun alternatives ranging from implants to tattoos. We’d miss them, of course, but we’d rather have a boobless mom than the alternative.

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Questions I Asked My Kids: The #MyDadChallenge

I invite you to take the #MyDadChallenge. Ask your kids these simple 10 questions and then post them and tag me so I can share them, too. Thanks Dorky Mom for the idea!

Father’s Day is just around the corner. This year, I get to celebrate it with Bang. Not because he’s a dad, too, but because it’s his birthday. That will get a post of it’s own. Today is an early shout out to all the Fathers out there. More importantly, it’s a shout out to the Dad’s. Any man can be father. The special ones get called dad. Happy Early Dad’s Day to my dad, my step-dad-in-law, and my dad-in-law smiling/laughing down at us.

1. My dad is _____ years old and weighs _____ pounds.

Crash: 40; 190
Bang: Practically 42 years old; 62 pounds

2. My dad is good at cooking _____ and is not so good at cooking _____.

Crash: Pancakes and waffles; Doughboys
Bang: Lasagna; Nothing

3. If my dad were a superhero, his name would be ______ and his superpower would be _____.

Crash: Stomperdad; use the force
Bang: Superdad; Flying and punching and kicking and shooting lasers out of his eyes.

4. And if my dad were a villain, his name would be ______ and he would use his evil powers to _____.

Crash: Bad Dad; Take over the world
Bang: DadBagGuy; Kill goodness

5. I love it when my dad______.

Crash: Says yes.
Bang: Plays 10 minutes (a tickle game)

6. When my dad is driving, he_________.

Crash: Sort of pays attention
Bang: Is not a maniac

7. I like it when my dad _______ and I don’t like it when my dad _________.

Crash: Dies in Fortnite; limits my screen time
Bang: Goes on the trampoline; sits on me and tickles me

8. My dad does not like to _______.

Crash: Clean
Bang: Clean up messes

9. My dad does ________ the best and _________ the worst.

Crash: Waking me up; letting me stay up late
Bang: cooking; not letting his kids do anything

10. I’m thankful for my dad because ___________.

Crash: He give me shelter, and food, etc…
Bang: puts my hat on backwards.

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Also, thanks for getting my head out of that concrete block

How to Survive Parenthood

Is that even possible? I assume it is because my parents survived parenthood. But that was 30-40 years ago. Plus my brother and I were easy kids to raise (with myself being the easier of the two, of course). Parenting has changed over the millions of years parents have graced the Earth. Dinosaurs could always eat their young if they misbehaved. That’s not really an option for us. So exactly, how does one survive parenthood?

Profanity

Lots and lots of profanity. Whether you allow your kids to hear your colorful language or it’s muttered under your breath as they walk away, it helps relieve the tension that built up while you argued with your politician. When your kid has an answer for EVERYTHING a few swear words will release the stress. When your kids insists that numbers less than zero are negative but numbers less than negative ten are megative and refuses any correction, you’re best bet is to send him away and give him a couple middle fingers while his back is turned.

Dates

Not the fruity kind. Though, enough of those will allow you to frequently use the bathroom where you can hopefully lock the door and keep unwanted guests away with the smell of not using Poo Pourri. These dates are the loving kind. The kidless kind. The do-whatever-you-can-do kind. Perhaps you have a late supper after putting the kids to bed. Being free to make any child unfriendly meal you want is as sweet as bedtime itself. Perhaps you can get a sitter for a couple hours to go out. Perhaps you can send the kids for sleepovers and make a night of it. Perhaps you just snuggle up and snack and watch a movie or binge watch the latest show that has course language and violence and parental supervision is required. Whatever you do, do it well and do it with love. And wine.

Wine

I know this one isn’t for everyone. I’ve heard some of you abstain from alcohol. You are the tough ones and I admire your courage. Mind you, we don’t celebrate “The Kids Are Asleep” every night with wine. Lately, we’ve only been celebrating every other weekend. We each have our favorite and we each know what they are so we can resupply when necessary. That’s true love.

Laughter

If you can’t laugh with or at each other, what can you do? That time I stepped on a toy, picked my foot up and put back down on a different toy, then nearly took a header through the wall? DW laughed so hard tears ran down her leg. That time I was backing out of the driveway and DW took a drink from her water bottle and I slammed on the brakes so she’d soak herself? Sure I called an asshole. But when the 4 year old in the backseat piped up with “Yeah, dad. Don’t be an asshole.” Then the 8 year old chimed in with “Great! Now you’ve got him saying asshole.” Or that time I told DW the Washington Capitals won the Stanley Cup and it was the first time my home team won it. She asked, “How you know it’s not Washington State?” Because they’re they Capitals? Maybe? Laugh. Laugh often and laugh loud.

Do whatever you have to do

It’s survival of the fittest. Adapt or get run over by life, also known as kids. You do whatever you need to do to survive your kids. Kick them outside. Allow them extra time in front of a screen. Give them an extra snack be it healthy or junk. Let them tromp through the mud, play in the sink, jump on the bed, cut their own hair. If it allows you a minute and a half to cook supper in peace, poop in peace, write a blog post in peace, anything in peace, let it happen. Make it happen. Or else the profanity will hit the fan.

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The Funny Side of Parenting

Laughter is the best medicine. If you can’t laugh at yourself who can you laugh at? Sometimes you laugh at yourself. Sometimes your partner provides a giggle. However, most often it’s our offspring who give us the largest dose of hilarity. Perhaps it’s during the regular “bedatorial” when tell about their teacher being out for two weeks because she had to get her “goldfish” removed. (It was really her gall bladder). Perhaps it’s something hollered in a public area, like “his pee pee looks like yours!” (we were at a Body Worlds exhibit). Or perhaps they just did something foolish, like drained the waterbed in the bedroom. Either way, a good dose of laughter is dished out and stories about it will be told for years. Facebook and Twitter are full of such stories. Here are just a few that made my belly jiggle like a bowl full Jell-O.

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Questions I Asked My Kids: This or That

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Thanks to Laura at Riddle from the Middle for this week’s questions. She snagged them from Wanderings of an Elusive Mind. I modified a few of the questions to fit the kids. This week the boys have just two choices. It’s time to see how different these two really are. Though if you’ve read any of the previous 70 Questions I Asked My Kids you already know how different they are. Like waffles and chicken. Like cats and cucumbers. Like… well, like two boys from the same two parents.

YouTube or TV? 

Crash: YouTube
Bang: YouTube

Cookies or ice cream?

Crash: Cookies
Bang: Ice cream

Popsicle or Freezy?  

Crash: Popsicle
Bang: Popsicle

Tablet or cell phone?

Crash: Cell phone
Bang: Tablet

Cake or pie?  

Crash: Pie
Bang: I don’t like pie so cake

Big party or small gathering? 

Crash: Big party
Bang: Big party

Rich friend or loyal friend?

Crash: Loyal friend
Bang: Loyal friend

Baseball or Soccer?

Crash: Baseball
Bang: Soccer

What’s worse: Putting away laundry or dishes?  

Crash: Dishes
Bang: Laundry

Hiking or biking?

Crash: Biking
Bang: I hate hiking because it’s too much walking and I hate biking because I get too tired. I go for biking, I guess, because it’s more fun than walking.

Sneakers or Crocs? 

Crash: Sneakers
Bang: Sneakers

Milk or Juice?

Crash: Juice
Bang: Milk

Couch or chair?  

Crash: Couch
Bang: Chair

Mom drive or dad drive?

Crash: Dad drive
Bang: Mom drive

Blue or Red?

Crash: Blue
Bang: Blue

Beach or camping? 

Crash: Camping, I think. Maybe.
Bang: Totally camping

Toilet paper: over or under?

Crash: Over
Bang: Over

Pancake or waffle?

Crash: Waffle
Bang: Waffle

Coke or Pepsi?

Crash: Coke. No Wait! Pepsi. Aren’t they like the same thing?
Bang: Pepsi

Plastic cup or glass?

Crash: Glass
Bang: Glass

Bedtime or wake up time?

Crash: Wake up time
Bang: Wake up time

Summer or winter?

Crash: Summer
Bang: Summer because THE BEACH!

International travel or New TV?

Crash: International travel
Bang: International travel

Save or spend?

Crash: Spend! No, wait. Save because I’m saving for an iPad
Bang: Save

Kind or smart?

Crash: Kind
Bang: Smart. No wait, kind because I’m already smart.

Inside or outside?  .

Crash: Outside
Bang: Inside

TV or book? 

Crash: Probably TV. Not to say I don’t like books, but I prefer TV.
Bang: Book

Ocean or mountains?

Crash: Ocean
Bang: Mountains.

The score? 16 same answers, 12 different. Alike enough to be called brothers, different enough to fight about it.

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Questions I Asked My Kids: Ep 70

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For those who follow me in the Insta you saw that we were at an air show yesterday. It was incredible to watch. The Canadian Air Forces’ Snowbirds were in town at our tiny, little airport. Nine fighter jets demonstrated their precision with formation fly overs and high speed fly bys. 600 kmh to be exact. Having grown up near an air force base and the U.S. Naval Academy, I have seen a few air shows. The Blue Angels and The Thunderbirds always fascinated me. I was still as excited as the kids to see this one. So was DW. I would absolutely love to fly co-pilot in one of these.

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After the show we got to meet the nine pilots and get their autographs. They each signed the boys hats and a poster for each of them. Then we spoke to the lead technician. He was great to answer all of our questions. He even let us look in the cockpit! I couldn’t believe when he told us the planes were built in 1965. They are 53 years old!

1. What was your favorite part of the Air Show?

Crash: The tricks. My favorite trick was when they would go straight up all together then spread out with a smoke trail to look like fireworks
Bang: When the planes looked like a hand and when they went sideways and passed each other really close and when they went over us really loudly.

Technician.jpg2. What do you want to be when you grow up?

Crash: A Snowbird pilot
Bang: A dog washer and a chef (I thought he’d be a Snowbird mechanic after talking one for a half hour last night. He says no, that’s too hard)

3. What is something you learned at the Air Show?

Crash: Its hard to fly in the wind and if a bird gets caught in the jet engine the bird is dead.
Bang: How they make the smoke. There’s these two things holding deisel and pipes connected to the back of the plane. Then deisel comes out of the back behind the engine and makes smoke.

4. How do you talk to someone who doesn’t speak your language?

Crash: You wave and shake your head yes and no and try to translate
Bang: Hand motion. You could write on a piece of paper and if he doesn’t know the letters you can translate it.

*5. What’s a good name for a dog?

Crash: Jaxson
Bang: Gizmo

**6. What’s a good name for a baby sister?

Crash: Shareeya Wayga (this is what he wanted to name the Bang while DW was still pregnant)
Bang: Leeya

7. What’s your favorite junk food snack?

Crash: Chocolate brownie cake
Bang: Bear paws

8. Who do you know that lives farthest away from us? How far away are they?

Crash: Nana and Pop Pop. They live 50 miles from here
Bang: Uncle B and Aunt Sara. They live 2,000 km away

9. What should we do this weekend?

Crash: Have my friend over so we can make YouTube videos. We want to make a try not to laugh video.
Bang: If it’s nice we can play in the sprinkler or have a water balloon fight or fly a kite if we don’t get electrocuted.

10. What do you wish Alexa (Amazon Echo) could do?

Crash: Clean my room and give me money
Bang: Have a face and arms and play every song in the world.

* We are not getting a dog (yet)

** We are not-no-way-in-hell getting a baby sister

Flying Quote

Snowbird Heart

This is how much these birds love flying…

Lucy At Home