Mar 2

Stay At Homer Fashion Week

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Look how the sweatshirt changes EVERYTHING!

Oscars are about to happen!  And as we all sit down on our couches and begin ripping human beings to pieces based on their ugly clothes and hair mishaps, I am reminded of my own fashion stylings. It’s that time of year again when I re-visit my wardrobe and share with you the new 2014 Stay At Homer fashions.  Let’s take a look at the at what’s hot in “at home” wardrobe! (more…)

Feb 27

Laundry Depression

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laundry

I love* laundry!
* = no I don’t

Doesn’t laundry suck?

Does anything express the monotony of being the stay at homer more than a giant pile of laundry waiting to be folded? I always feel like I suffer from depression when I do laundry. Wash. Dry. Fold. Repeat. Every. Day. (more…)

Sep 6

Tardy Pardon for Parents

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As it turns out, and as has recently happened to my wife, if you are late by 7 minutes to the doctor, they will turn you away…and charge you for the appointment.  Whoa, whoa, whoa, hold on!  Settle down, I can’t hear myself think!  *gavel bang* Let’s here them out.  Maybe there’s a good reason for this policy. (more…)

Aug 6

Dads Doing Good

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Honda Book Pic 5

I just got back from my high school reunion.  Twenty years!  Yes, I do realize how old that is, so you can lose that OMG face. I went up to my hometown (Lynden, WA) by myself, which I thought was going to be the best way to go.  I was going to stay at a friends house, and because tickets were expensive, and we didn’t really know how it was going to work up in my hometown (babysitters and stuff), I decided to go by myself.  HUGE mistake. (more…)

Jun 3

Don’t be a schlub

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You callin' me a schlub?

You callin’ me a schlub?

Confession time.  I’m a schlub.  The definition?  I’ll look it up, just so we are accurate.  Hold, please….. WHOA!  What the hell?! I just looked up the definition, it’s “a person regarded as clumsy, stupid, or unattractive.”  Unbelievable! I am NOT a schlub!  I thought it meant someone who doesn’t keep a clean face, maybe lets their nose and ear hairs grow too long, trips over things, wears the same clothes from 10 years ago, and maybe forgets things easily. I was trying to say that I do not have a super stylish wardrobe, and I shower only when I remember, which can sometimes be every day, and sometimes it means every couple of days.   I’m saying that clearly I’m not a metrosexual.  Not that there’s anything wrong with being a metrosexual.  Many of my friends are metrosexual.  I’m just saying that I’m a messy individual.  And I get my clothes from Old Navy…..not that a metrosexual can’t own clothes from Old Navy, that’s not what I’m saying.  Quit backing me into a corner here!   Fine!  Alright!  I’m a schlub!  You happy?! (more…)

May 4

Shush Your Face!

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Shush your face!

Shush your face!

Alistair clearly wanted Noble to play with him.  The continuous requests for Noble to listen and to follow his instructions made it quite clear this was the case.  Noble had a different agenda, though, and wouldn’t let up with “I don’t want to play with you!” Alistair had enough, and responded, “Shush it!  Shush your face!”

You see, we don’t say “Shut up” in our house.  It’s not as polite or tame as “Shush your face!” We do a fantastic job in our house at making sure our children are on track with using proper, age appropriate phrases.  Just listening to Alistair go off on Noble with his choice phrase got me to thinking how ridiculous our language is, and how we take pretty odd measures to try and clean it up.

Noble (7) called something a “damn thing” the other day.  And I had to tell him that he can say darn, instead.  And it means the same damn thing!  But, for some reason, darn is more tame than damn. Same with hell and heck.  It’s still the same inferno of pain and suffering.  But “heck” takes the edge off, apparently.

That brings me to Jesus Christ.  To many, he is the son of god.  And to others, he’s the invisible two year old being scolded when we’ve done something wrong, “Jesus Christ, not my good hammer!”  Or we blame him when we stub our toe, “Jesus Christ that hurts!” Noble said it once in an exasperated tone when he became increasingly frustrated with some yarn work he was doing.  ”Jesus!” At least he left off the Christ part.  And I found myself scolding him and giving him the proper alternative.  ”You cannot say that!  You can say ‘Jeez’.” It’s better, but not really, because this is clearly Jesus’s nickname.  I imagine that his disciples used it back in the day. “Yo Jeez!  What we gonna pray about today up in this holy house?!” I doubt he minds a great deal either way. I’m sure he’s rolling his eyes over a great many other atrocities.  But still, not cool to hear from a seven year old.

Shall I move on to shit? Don’t you dare let them say that!  It’s awful!  And there’s no excuse, because we’ve given them so many wonderful options: crap, poop, poo poo, poopy, pooperoni, two-ski, diarrhea, deuce and butt booger just to name a few.  This word offers a great opportunity for exploration i.e. ding-biscuit, steamer, crapcake, crapjack,  brown banana, and Shrek. Of all the words, shit really shouldn’t be used on the grounds that our children should be more creative.

The big one is the F word. That is the Voldemort of the house: that which shall not be spoken.  And they have no idea that’s the rule because they’ve been sheltered from it with great care. This word has never been uttered in our house…when the kids are home…or before 9pm.  This is a tricky word because the alternatives will be on a case by case basis.  It takes many difficult to manage forms: an adjective (That F-in nightmare is back, or F-in customer service representative), a noun (He’s a F-er…usually made into a compound word like F-face or Dumb-F), or verb…you know, to “do it.” Handling the F-word scares me.

I wouldn’t know where to begin if I heard Noble say it.  If he did, just off the top of my head, I suppose I would say something like, “What did you just…NO! Not good! That word opens up a portal for all manner of monsters to come through your closet and destroy us! What have you done?! Quick, get the Febreze, we need to spray the room and clean it of the evil that you have unleashed!  Hurry! There’s not much time if we want to live!” He might need therapy, but I bet he wouldn’t use the F word again.

Admittedly, I have a pretty foul mouth in certain circles.  And my wife and I share a pretty raunchy sense of humor at times.  We are both fans of Louis C.K. if that gives you an idea.  But the hypocrite in me finds the simplest things unacceptable with my kids.  For instance, I hate the word stupid.  It’s a stupid thing for a kid to say.  And I hate the word hate.  It’s the stupidest. I make my children come up with a different word when they use it.  It usually goes like this:

Noble: This toy is stupid.

Me: Noble, we don’t say that word, you can come up with something better.

Noble: I hate this toy?

Me: No.  Try again.

Noble: Jesus!  Can you just leave me alone?

Me: Noble!  We don’t talk like that!

Noble: Jeez!

Me: Better.

I think I’ve asked this question before, but I’ll put it out there again.  Are there words that you won’t allow your kids to use? Aside from the George Carlin top 7. Those are the givens.

Apr 9

Parental Worry At Leo Carillo

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Awesome picture!  Please god don't let him slip off the rocks!

“What’s going on?” I asked.

Noble was sitting by himself, tucked in the woods behind our campsite.  He was dejectedly fiddling with some tall grass.  Looking up at me, I could see that he was depressed.  It wasn’t a surprise, based on what recently went down.  He tried to get the whole sentence out without showing me his sadness, but his lip quivering on that final word said it all.  ”I just want to be left alone.”

Noble isn’t a depressed kid.  When he’s upset he tends to stomp, throw, and/or raise his voice. This new expression of his feelings stung me pretty hard. Ten minutes ago, though, we were in a different world. (more…)

Mar 9

Let Me Yank Your Tooth!

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It wants to be free!

When I was in middle school I wanted to be a superhero, with the powers of flight and hands that shoot electricity being my powers of choice. When I was in high school, all I wanted to do was be an actor. Now that I’m grown up, with a six-year-old in the house, my hopes and dreams no longer reach to the stars.  They center around a single item on my bucket list: yanking a tooth from my child’s face. (more…)

Feb 13

How To Get Your 3 Year Old To Clean Their Room

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cleanroom

With my 6 year old, it’s pretty easy to get him to clean his room.  I just have to say, “Time to clean your room.” And then I have to listen to a bunch of whining, and pleads, and reasons why now is not a good time for him to clean his room.  Once I combat all of those, it’s pretty easy.  Then, I just have to listen to a few more minutes of “FINE!” or “but you said…” or more pleads to not clean his room.  Once I combat those with, “What did I just tell you to do?” it’s ridiculously easy.  I only have to go to his room and ask him why he didn’t really clean it, and why he put everything in the wrong spot or created a large tower of “stuff” in the closet.  Once I instruct him on where everything goes, it’s smooth sailing!

But I’ve got a 3 year old to deal with as well… (more…)

Dec 13

SHOTS!

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Oh crap, this is really going down.

Is there anything so wonderful as taking your small child in to the doctor for shots?  Wait, let me rephrase that because maybe you didn’t pick up on my sarcasm.  Is there anything so horrifically sucky as taking your  child in to the doctor for shots?  What an ordeal!

It starts with the primary objections, when you mention it to them a couple days in advance.  ”I don’t want to get a shot!” Well of course you don’t.  I don’t.  They don’t seem to fully grasp the idea that by getting stabbed in the arm by a needle, they are hopefully going to miss the boat on a few days of vomiting, diarrhea and pain!

Then, when the day arrives, the treat demands surface. “I better get ice cream!” Or “I’m not getting a shot unless you buy me a toy!”  When kids are 2 or 3, I’m all about gifting the horror of getting a shot.  But Noble is 6 now.  I can go for a treat, but I just can’t be buying legos for every unpleasant thing in his life.  Some things in life require good ol fashioned, “Suck it up!”

And the tears, oh my gosh those tears after a shot are the worst!  As a parent, we are supposed to protect our children.  But there are these times when we have to literally watch them get stabbed by a stranger and do nothing about it.  The parental instinct is to smash the assailant in the head with a blunt object.  Denying that instinct while your kid looks at you like, “What are you letting them do to me?!” just isn’t easy.  But that’s the way it goes.

I managed to document Noble’s flu shot.  The experience was unlike any shot he has ever received.  He actually began the process with total optimism and acceptance… (more…)