J is for… #atozchallenge


is for so many things. I’m being indecisive. I’ve scoured the J section of the Scrabble Dictionary. 

Jaculate – to throw; I’ll jaculate my kids into the river if they keep fighting, making messes, or leaving the hamster’s cage open.

Jenny – a female donkey; “You son of a Jenny” just doesn’t have the same insult factor as its cousin.

Jealous. I’m jealous of those parents who have their shit together. The ones who can honestly use the #ParentingWin and mean it.

Jackass. Sometimes my kids are mean to each other for no reason other than to be a jackass and piss the other one off.

Journey. I did that one last year. Besides, this journey called parenting is too much like Jacob’s ladder. It has no end. Or if you believe the biblical Jacob’s ladder, it leads to Heaven. Heaven doesn’t want me and Hell’s afraid I’ll take over.

J could be Jake and the Neverland Pirates or Justin Time, two shows Crash and Bang can agree to watch together.

In this thing called parenting some things are done better together. Showering isn’t one of them. Like classic peanut butter and jelly we stick together. Everyone’s awake, everyone’s been fed, everyone’s lunch is made, everyone’s ready to get their day started.

Perhaps our sandwiches are made with chunky peanut. Not everything goes smooth.

We have our bumps and lumps in the every day life. One kid can’t find all the stuff he needs for school which results in a meltdown. One kid has a coat sleeve turned inside out and can’t get his arm in. This, too, results in a meltdown. Perhaps we’re not as ready as we thought we were.

This is a joint effort. When one kid takes 45 minutes to fall asleep we call in the reliever. When the kids are on last nerves, we call for backup. When there’s readying to be done we’re there for the assist. Or the 9th inning 3 run homer for the win.

When there’s playing to be done, we do it right. Dirt diggin’. Tower crashin’. Lego buildin’. Soccer kickin’. Trampoline jumpin’. Igloo buildin’. Playgroundin’. Fun.

We try to stay on the same page with the disciplining, too. We try to give the kids a bit of consistency. Not that it always works, but we try. Sometimes the severity of punishment will depend upon how frustrated the one delivering the sentence is. No matter, we try to support each other’s decisions.

There’s no I in parent. But there is part. We’re part of a team. Part of our children’s lives. Part of their success. When our children are successful that’s a #ParentingWin.



The Daily Elf (or Parenting Win)

December 23

You haven’t seen the elves for two days now because the elves haven’t been here. They took a break. The kids were having trouble getting along and were doing an unusual amount of fighting, bickering, and tormenting. So Woody and Elfis left a note saying they would be staying with Santa and helping in his workshop for the day. If they came back to a good note from Mom and Dad they’d stay. Otherwise, they’d return to the North Pole to keep helping. They said they like making toys but they’d rather be here with Crash and Bang.

Crash and Bang didn’t try to get along that first day. The fighting continued. At bedtime Crash was worried they wouldn’t be back for Christmas. I let him know they would be, he just needed to try harder to not argue with us or fight with his brother.

It worked.

Yesterday morning there was no arguing. There was no fighting. There was some stomping and screaming from the four year old. He’s been in “I don’t give a shit” mode for a couple weeks now. However, Crash was trying really hard despite his brother’s attitude.

As we were leaving the house yesterday morning, I told Crash to change out of his sneakers and put on boots for our hike. Normally, there would have been an argument. But not this time, he simply changed. We went to the library to print Bang a Princess Peach on the 3D printer then headed out for a hike. There’s never any fighting on the trails. I love it.

Plus, the boys were amazed, standing silently in awe as we watched a squirrel no more than six feet away.


After lunch, they played Wii together – Disney Infinity. Crash was letting Bang win and Bang was laughing hysterically. It was music to our ears.

We watched “The Polar Express” this evening. Both boys were captivated and watched the whole thing. Whereas, usually one or both get restless and starts distracting and disrupting.

Of course, there were some minor hiccups in their behavior yesterday. But overall, it was exactly what were hoping for. I let Crash know all of this at bedtime tonight. It really did make him feel good to remember the day and all the good things that happened, especially the good things that he helped make happen.

Are the elves back this morning?

You betcha.


Anyone up for some zip lining?