Monday, February 22, 2010

Oh, yeah. I went there.

Insanity is a path all parents walk down from time to time.  We are led there by periods of totally irrational behavior in our children.  Kids do crazy things, and it makes parents crazy.  It's like reverse heredity, if you think about it.

You may be thinking that something happened in my house tonight to inspire this post, and you would be right.  I'm not going to get into the details, because that's not the funny part.  Lets' just say it involved an extraordinary volume of tears...a volume totally disproportionate to the act that inspired them. 

This particular tantrum yanked an age-old parental cliche out of me.  I tried to stop it, I didn't want to go there, but it just made sense to say it.  The perfect words to sum up what I was feeling, right there at the tip of my tongue.  Before I could stop myself I said, "Do you want me to give you something to cry about?"

I can say it worked, he didn't want anyting...wait, my wife just told me he's still upstairs crying.  I'll be right back.
Okay, I'm back.  Now before you call CPS, for the record, I did not give him anything to cry about.  Unless you count enforcing bedtime hours without the privilege of reading a book, something he was encouraged to do earlier in the evening.  Personally, I don't count that.  He argued that he's supposed to do it for school, which is true, and that his teacher will be mad at him, which is not.  It's Monday and he can make up for it any of the remaining days this week.  I'm not buying the tear-inducing necessity of "just one page."  I'm all for reading, but not as a reward for driving my wife and me crazy.

Eventually he stopped I didn't need to follow up with "this will hurt me more than it will you."    

Once, years ago, I caught myself using the threat of a spanking in a horrible juxtaposition that bewildered the tears right out of my son.  He was back-talking, and said no when I told him to do something he needed to do.  So naturally, I said, "Don't you say no to me.  Do you want a spanking?"

So what option did I leave him as a response?  Yes?  Maybe?  It stunned us both into silence.

Now that's it for tonight.  No more blogging.  Put the laptop down.  Do it now.  Because I said so.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Snow Daze

Three weeks ago, it snowed.  A lot.  Eight inches of wet, heavy, heart-attack snow.  The kind that you can’t just push off the driveway with the shovel…this was the scoop-carry-dump kind of snow.

The piles along the side of the driveway were deep enough to tunnel through.  We also dug an igloo in the pile at the corner of the driveway.  By we, of course, I mean me.  The kids helped me along with their positive spirit and words of encouragement.  “Hurry up,” they said.

Last week, before a single flake of the first snow had the opportunity to melt, it snowed again.  Thankfully I was in Chicago so I didn’t have to shovel it.

It snowed in Chicago, too.  On Monday night I kept waking up to the sound of the snow plow scraping asphalt outside my hotel room window.  On Tuesday night in Chicago I woke up to a 4.3 earthquake.  I didn’t know that’s what it was at the time (4am), I thought it was the damn snow plow again.  Only it didn’t make any scraping noises, it just felt like the ground was shaking.  Looking back now, all I can say about that is “duh.”  After all, it was an earthquake.

I was happy to be back in Ohio on Wednesday.  I was not happy to dig my car out from under six inches of new snow.  Then it started snowing again Monday morning.  We shoveled the driveway Monday afternoon; roughly six inches had fallen, and we were only to the halfway point.


If it snows again - as it is forecast to do next week - I will be lost as to where to put it all.  The piles at the end of the driveway are already six feet tall.  I buried the igloo and tunnel (NOTE: the kids were able to convince me to dig them back out, because I am a push-over.)

But why keep telling you, when I can show you a before and after picture of the igloo.  And I'll even invite you 'round back for a picnic...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dude, where's my post?

In my head, that's where.  I've been in Chicago for work for the past few days, so I haven't had time to tell you about the snow we've been getting, or about the earthquake I felt last night.  But I will....Eventually. 

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Getting the Run-Around

I wasn't planning on posting again this week, but this is just too good...

Last night I was sitting on the couch watching a DVR recording of America's Funniest Home Videos with my five-year-old son.  Or rather, I was watching AFV while my son bounced around the couch like a jumping bean.  A very loud jumping bean.

"Wow, you're wound up," I said, checking the clock.  It was around 8pm, edging on bedtime.  "Why don't you run three laps around the couch and burn some of that energy off?"

He thought that was a great idea, so he took off.  I counted each time he passed between me and the TV screen.  "One...two...three..."

Oh, he didn't stop there.  He wasn't done by a long shot.  "Four...five...six..."  He asked if this would make him better at basketball.  I assured him it would.

"Seven...eight...nine...ten..."  I won't go through every number, because trust me, it's boring as hell.  I will give you some general recaps, however, so you can get the sense of how this little exercise progressed:

Laps 45-55: He added the dining room and kitchen.  I still only counted a lap when he passed between me and the TV screen, though.  After ten extended laps he went back to circling the couch.

Lap 70- He asked if his basketball game would be over.  I said it would be pretty close.

Lap 75- He told me he would go to 101.

Lap 101- Still going strong.  He asked me if running would help build up his Magneto powers.  I said I didn't know, but encouraged him to try it out and see.

Lap 125- I was cracking up, and reminded him that I only asked him to run three laps.  He asked me not to laugh.  Then he clarified that I could laugh at the TV, just not at him.

Lap 150- AFV was over, and I noted that surely his basketball game would be over too.  He did not object to being called Shirley.  Must work on this.

Lap 212- He started walking.

Lap 251- It was 9:01 pm and my wife came in to admonish me for not sending him up to bed already.  I made him stop and sent him up to bed, but I'm pretty sure he was dead-set on clearing 300 if we would have let him.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Guest Post

The author of today's guest post is my eight-year old son.   He's in second grade, and part of his homework is to write 10 sentences using 10 vocabulary words.  Today's words were:

  • Yelling
  • Sit
  • Passing
  • Running
  • Pick
  • Jumping
  • Picking
  • Sitting
  • Jump
  • Resting
And here's his contribution to this blog, via his homework.  Feel free to psychoanalyze us in the comments:

Stop yelling.  Stop yelling at me yelling hurts my ears.  Sit down mate.  Hey! Stop passing that football and get over here.  Stop running on the track and get over here.  Don't pick on my little brother wimp! Hey! Stop doing your jumping jacks and get over here!  Why aren't you sitting up?  Jump come on kid jump! I'm resting I broke my back I am parylized you see.