Tag: humour

Trapped In A Closet With Fake Newz Around The Corner

Three quick posts for the price of one today, dawg. Let’s go!

TRAPPED IN A CLOSET

A while ago, lil KJ outgrew his crib, so we upgraded him to his own bed. For the most part,  it’s been alright.  Sometimes, though, I miss the containment of the crib. Take the other night, for example.

I had put him down to sleep, which was a laborious, time-consuming process. About an hour later, I heard his door open.  He happily came bouncing down the stairs, fresh as a daisy.

Oh, c’mon!

The increase in bed freedom has led to an increase in late night wandering.  He usually comes to our room later, though.  Why he was up so early now, no clue. Regardless, I took him back to his room, and he was out within minutes.

I had promised J that I would crash in her bed (that’s a whole ‘nother story), so that’s where I ended up. At around 3AM, I was awakened to KJ screaming for me, and crying.  In theory, I should have just gotten up, but I was barely conscious, so I yelled for him to come to me. I must have dozed off, because, the next thing that I know, I heard KJ frantically yelling for me, plus a lot of indecipherable, two year old toddler gibberish (“Daddy, lkfjk$ajfuebt! Daddy!”).  I had to get up now. I stumbled around upstairs, in the dark, trying to find where the yells were coming from. It was like the sorriest game of Marco Polo ever. Eventually, I realized that the screaming was coming from B’s room.

Or more specifically, B’s closet.

See, B has a dresser in his closet, with a  gap between it and the wall. The gap is roomy enough for me to stand there, for example, but I’m too big to easily wedge myself into it. KJ,  presumably in his hunt for me, in the dark, decided that I must have been in that gap.

He got himself into it, but then couldn’t get back out, and started freaking.  I saw him, lifted him up, and as soon as I did, he calmed down. Fresh as a daisy, he then said ‘Oh, hi daddy!’ as if he was surprised to see me.

Legit, I think that, with R. Kelly making headlines, I had been reading a lot about him and his music lately. KJ must have been secretly reading along with me, too. Otherwise I don’t think that I’ll ever understand why he was trapped in a closet.

FAKE NEWZ

Speaking of big new stories, the Momo Challenge was a huge deal recently. As parents, K and I had the same sense of moral panic that you probably did, which meant that we had to confront what our kids were consuming on social media head-on. It’s crazy how impressionable a child’s mind is.

Take J, for instance. In her six year old eyes, a heavy set toy delivery man in a red suit, magic reindeers, unicorns and giant, chocolate-dropping bunnies are all very important to her. Shoot, for a minute, so was a ghost-hunting Elvis Presley.

Knowing this, a few weeks ago, J casually asked me the following:

“Is YouTube Real?”

I was slightly distracted, so I said of course it was real, without hesitation. Real live humans, posting real stuff. In retrospect, this was not the greatest idea.  YouTube is reality, but there’s also a lot of phoney bologna which can fool a naive young brain.  Later on, we had this conversation:

J – “Daddy, I’m scared of the Bad Elf.” ( J loves the Elf On A Shelf, and takes the whole thing very seriously. In turn, I have to treat it seriously.  Imagine her dismay when she came across some dastardly video, of elves behaving badly and ruining Christmas for kids). 

Me – “The Bad Elf isn’t real. You have nothing to be scared of.”

J – “But I saw him on YouTube.”

Me – “So?”

J – “You said YouTube is real.”

Oh. Right. I did say that.

Despite my attempts to explain myself, she was worried about this creepy little jerk for weeks afterwards.

Another time, while out for dinner, J  casually told us that she had been watching the news.  This was odd, as current events isn’t really her thing. She continued on by discussing how mermaids existed, and where you could go to find them.  Believe it or not, she didn’t see this on CNN. It was some random YouTube news channel. Fake newz at its finest, which I had to explain to her.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, despite the Momo Challenge being (most likely) a hoax, the idea of the Momo Challenge was terrifying, because of how easy it could be real.  In my house, anyway, it doesn’t always take much to sway one of my kids.

‘ROUND EVERY CORNER

Speaking of my house, I’d like to think it’s a pretty typical home. I still shake my head at the stuff that takes place in it, though. ‘Round every corner lies a possible surprise.

One night, I turned a corner and almost stepped on J. Instead of going to sleep as asked, she stubbornly put together a makeshift bed in her doorway, and slept there. I mean, based on the amount of effort that this would have taken, it would have been easier and more comfy to just to lie in her regular bed, but what do I know?

KJ was calling me here, on two phones (he drips too hard, as the kids say).  They’re actually a calculator and a broken walkie talkie. The reception on those things is horrible.

On first glance, I was grossed out when I entered B’s room and almost stepped on this. Luckily, it’s just a brown deflated balloon.

This time.

B wasn’t home when I walked into his room to see this, so you can imagine my reaction.  Luckily, it wasn’t some sort of bizarre, inappropriate class project. I found out later that he had an audition, and was practising some lines.

J decided to play dress up. Here she is, as Marshmello, the famous DJ. Curse you, Fortnite.

KJ was walking around eating and drinking. He then pulled a toddler David Blaine. I looked, and his snack had vanished. I finally found it here,  down low, on a shoe rack. I’ve heard of waffle shoes before, but this is ridiculousness!

Anyway, you get the idea. You just never know what to expect, with kids.

One thing that I do know, however…..is that this post is over. Later, y’all.

 

Sleeping? Beauty!

Kids passing out in random places is hilarious, man. Like, I personally have never been so tired that I just had to curl up and sleep on anywhere but a bed, couch or chair. Well, except for the time when I fell asleep on my floor, face first, in a plate of Chinese food  But that doesn’t count, because I was DRUNK!

Anyway, children are different. I used to find B in the weirdest positions, which always made me chuckle. J, unfortunately (fortunately?) has picked up on this habit, too, recently. Check it out!

We had come home late evening, and J had fallen asleep in the car. When we got to our house, she took off her coat and shoes, and went to the couch. She was so exhausted, however, that she only made it to the one end, and collapsed. She ended up in this awkward state, dangling off the side, partially upside down.  Apparently she is half five year old girl/half bat?


I apologize for the lousy lighting, as I found her in her closet like this one night.

Yeah, that’s right, her closet.

As far as I can tell, instead of going to her nice, comfy bed, she made a nest out of clothes on her closet floor. Hungry from her nesting, she then pounded back an apple sauce packet, without our permission. Finally she contorted her legs in an awkwardly flexible manner, against the door frame, and fell asleep. Apparently she is half five year old girl/half Gumby?

 

I…..I can’t even.

I can only speculate on what happened here, but I’ll give it a go.
J had a bath on this night, hence the bath toys. Afterwards, feeling so fresh n’ so clean (word to Outkast!), she naturally decided she needed to go on a trip. This required busting out the globe. I guess she’s half five year old girl/half Dora The Explorer? After deciding on a destination, she packed her Frozen backpack with just a few books, including her school yearbook. #kindergartenmemories

The destination must have been to a sunny resort, to escape the Canadian winter. The books must have been for reading material while she lounged on the beach. It was probably going to be a short trip, since she didn’t pack any clothes. Anyway, next, she must have called an Uber, to take her to the resort (I never said geography was her strong suit). Wanting to take full advantage of the door to door service, she most likely requested that the driver pick her up at the door of her choice; in this case, her bedroom doorway.  JUST the doorway, though, so that’s why she put down the STOP sign, to keep the driver from entering her room. While waiting for her Uber to arrive, she got tired,  grabbed a blanket and pillow, and fell asleep.

What? It could have happened this way!  The logic of a little kid is straight bananas sometimes, so you never know!

Awww!  No halves here. This is just 100% adorable, homey!

Big bro, lil sis, cuddled together after story time and a visit from the Sandman.   Why can’t every night be like this?

That’s all for now. Sweet dreams, everybody!

 

Bedtime WTF – Flaming Panties Edition

flame

One of the cool parts about being a parent is the never-ending string of learning experiences. Not just by your kids, though, but by you, too. It’s always something, man.

Take the other night, for example, when my house was almost set ablaze by a pair of underwear.

Yeah. Some things you just can’t make up.

 

It all started off so uneventfully.  It was just me with B and J for the evening, as K was out. After doing our usual bedtime routine (I tell them that it’s time for bed, and they proceed to defiantly cause a ruckus. What? I didn’t say that it was a good routine),  the kids went off to their rooms, to get their pyjamas on.  I said that I would come back soon, to check on them. Now, on most nights, I usually head downstairs and do whatever. On this night, though, I decided to stay upstairs in our bedroom, to put some laundry away.

Five minutes later, a warm, sweet-smelling scent filled the air.

My initial reaction was that someone was making cookies. Nice!

My next reaction was, wait a minute. No one else was home….who was making cookies!!!!???

 

I may or may not have thought of ghosts.

I may or may not have thought it was the ghost of a Keebler elf.

I headed down to the kitchen, to investigate. The stove was off. No cookies. No scents, as well, which didn’t make sense. Confused, I realized that the smell was emanating from upstairs. I went back up, and narrowed its origin down to either B or J’s room.

The kids don’t have Easy-Bake Ovens, so I knew they weren’t creating any late night goodies. After taking a nice big whiff, I figured out that the odour was definitely coming from J’s room. I walked in, and found her sitting on the floor, doing a puzzle with her stuffed animals. I asked why her room smelled so delicious. She had no idea. I looked around and I couldn’t figure it out. I searched under her bed, in her closet, and in her ceiling light.

Nada.

It then dawned on me that the lamp on her bedside table seemed darker than normal.

Bingo!

I discovered the culprit:

20160411_205119_HDR

No, someone did not forget to wipe.

This is a pair of J’s underwear which were cooking on the light bulb in her lamp. See, when J was changing into her pyjamas, she took off her underwear and flung them towards her laundry hamper. However, they somehow ended up landing in her lamp (Breanna Stewart, your job is safe for now). Then, instead of moving them, she left them there to bake, because, well #kidslogic.

The messed up part is that these were the charred remains after just a few minutes on the light bulb. Can you imagine what would have happened if I hadn’t stayed up in our room? What if a fire had broken out? Scary stuff, dude. It’s amazing how the most random things can potentially cause serious consequences.

The end result?

A valuable lesson about fire safety was learned.  The importance of understanding flammable hazards in the house can not be understated, for real.

And yes, in case you were wondering, cookies were had by me afterwards.

Be safe, y’all!

 

 

 

 

When Kids Make You Feel Ancient

As a thirty-something year old dude, I’m still fairly young.  On occasion, however, thirty-something can feel like one hundred-something.

You see, it’s easy to forget that some things which are common to me, are completely foreign to my kids.  I’m sure we all remember our parents telling us stories from their adolescence, which we couldn’t relate to at all (“You paid a quarter to take the train to see a Beatles concert, and got change back? For real?!”).  Inevitably, I expected to become a dinosaur to B and J in the future, babbling on about the good ol’ days.

What I didn’t expect was for the future to come so soon!

Because both of them are under the age of six, B and J don’t know about stuff  which was the norm just a few short years ago. They have no clue. Needless to say, this has resulted in some interesting experiences.

Here, lemme give you some examples:

 WE USED TO READ WHERE’S WALDO, NOT PLAY IT.

While at the mall last year, I pointed out a “Where’s Waldo” book to B. Many an hour was spent by me as a youth looking for Waldo, Wenda, the Wizard, tastefully drawn nude characters etc.  B’s response when I showed the book to him?

“Oh. you mean it’s like the video game?”

Thanks, Nintendo Wii. Thanks.

COMMERCIALS WERE MANDATORY VIEWING.

We were watching a Toronto Blue Jays game on TV a couple of months ago. When the commercials came on, B grabbed the remote and tried to fast forward through them. It didn’t work, obviously. He’s used to watching shows pre-recorded, or  “on demand”.  I had a hard time explaining why we couldn’t zip past the ads (“Regular TV? What’s that?”).

A commercial free childhood? Sheesh. Must be nice.

NO REALLY. SHAQUILLE O’NEAL WAS A LEGENDARY BASKETBALL PLAYER.

B and I  watched the NBA Slam Dunk Contest recently.  He was blown away by what the contestants in it were doing. However, one of the judges, Shaquille O’Neal, kept giving the dunkers lower scores than what B thought they deserved. It ticked him off, to the point that he angrily demanded to know what was up.  Now to me, Shaq is one of the best, most entertaining ballers ever. I happily rattled off his accolades. B’s bitter response to this ?

“Well, why does Shaq ruin everything?”

So now, to B, Shaq is just some clueless old guy who has less basketball credibility than Kevin Hart. Shaqtin’ a fool, indeed.

COMPACT DISCS AREN’T SHINY PLATES.

Ever explain to a three year old girl how the Wu-Tang Clan CD that she put her food on actually has music on it? Unfortunately, I have.

WUTANG

WU-TANG CLAN AIN’T NUTHING TA….LUNCH WIT’?

PHONES USED TO ONLY MAKE PHONE CALLS.

Ever explain to a crying three year old girl why she could only talk to Grammy on the phone, but not see her as well, because your phone doesn’t have FaceTime? Unfortunately, I have.

Ciphertac,_first_secure_cell_phone_for_US_CDMA_networks,_STU-III_compatible_-_National_Cryptologic_Museum_-_DSC07952

What do you mean you can’t FaceTime on this?

 

R.I.P. 90s BOY BANDS?

*After I showed B and J the video for ‘Everybody‘ by the Backstreet Boys*

B – Who are they?

Me – The Backstreet Boys.

B – Are they from a long time ago?

Me – Sort of. The 1990s.

B – Are they dead?

Harsh, son. Just harsh. It wasn’t even that long ago! People from that era aren’t exactly dropping like flies. Yo, if you survived the 90s, good for you, apparently.

Speaking of which….

Y2K WAS TERRIFYING. WASN’T IT?

During a Chris Jericho wrestling match, the crowd was chanting his nickname “Y2J”. B asked what it meant, and I started to explain that it was a play on words, on Y2K. I then kind of tailed off and changed the subject, because I couldn’t remember why Y2K was such a big deal. I mean, at the time, the world was supposed to end, right?

Y2K_illustration

Hmm. Actually, if you survived the 90s, good for you!

 

MY ELDERS WERE MY MAIN SOURCE FOR INFORMATION.  I BELIEVED EVERYTHING THEY SAID.

Children are inquisitive and full questions.  Looking back, I’m sure I got a lot of B.S. from adults, when I was little. If they didn’t know an answer, it would require a trip to the library, or waiting until the door-to-door encyclopedia salesman came around, or something, to find one. I’m sure it was easier to fake it, just to shut me up.

With my kids, though? If I don’t know an answer, or if they think I’m lying, they’ll make me Google it.

Sometimes it’s easy to find (“Daddy? Who’s the oldest person in the world?”).

Sometimes it’s not so easy (“Daddy? Do you remember that man in that movie? You know, THAT movie? What was his name?”).

Sometimes, it’s WTF (“Daddy? How many people have ever died falling off cliffs? They do, too, keep track of this! Look it up on your phone!”). 

Whatever the case may be, I don’t get why they have to have the facts instantly, as opposed to simply taking my word for it.

10366075_10154704653710195_6155405449846996437_n (1)

I..I can’t even. Are you dancing, Mike? Why are you doing the robot with that thing? What’s with the George The Animal Steele shirt? You realize you’re out in public, right? And you wonder why your kids don’t take you at your word?

Oh. I guess I get it now.

Anyway, you probably understand my point. The generation gap with your children can hit at any time. When it does, shoot, it can make you feel capital O Old!

That’s it for today. I think that I am going to go update my MySpace profile.

Later, y’all.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Like A Kid In A Grocery Store

With 2015 coming to an end, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the year that was. And with all of the reflecting, I came to an unexpected realization……

Shopping with children kind of sucks sometimes.

Back in the day, pre-kids, there wasn’t much to it. If I had to make a trip to a store, I could do it whenever I wanted.  I would grab my wallet and go. I’d get what I needed, and be back in good time. #nodillydallying.

Nowadays, though? Going to the store alone isn’t always feasible. At least some or all of the family usually comes. As such, quick trips are now time-consuming “outings” requiring significant planning prior to going.

Say it’s a few years ago, when B or J were babies, but K and I needed to get some stuff for the house. Well, we had to work around feedings/naptimes/bowel movements. Then, once the timing was acceptable, we would load up the diaper bag and head out, fingers crossed that there would be no crying outbursts/poopy diapers.

Here’s the other catch – as challenging as it is trying to shop with babies, it isn’t much easier with little kids! At least babies are immobile, you see. Small children are not. They have legs and are not afraid to use them.

Or their arms.

Or their brains.

Or their brains to come up with some impulsive, poorly thought out idea for their legs or arms to execute.

As such,  B and J require a different type of scheduling now, than when they were babies. For real, to minimize in-store incidents, I gotta scout and come up with a gameplan before leaving, like I’m Bill Belichick preparing for the Super Bowl (OK, so the lightbulbs are in the third aisle near the back, but the milk is on the other side of the place. If I come in through the left, go deep down the produce section, grab the milk, Hail Mary it out of dairy, and run a reverse through the candy aisle to avoid the toy display, I can snatch the bulbs after. Hut hut hut!).

Photo courtesy of Keith Allison

You’re welcome, Coach Bill, for the free play.

I really can’t stress the importance of this pre-planning. Failure to do so never ends well.

Lemme give you an example. The other day, we nonchalantly decided to go pick up a few things at the local Fortinos supermarket. While there, the following happened:

  • Upon arrival, B’s energy level, which was mellow in the car ride over,  went through the roof. He was uncontrollably hyperactive. Whoever said “like a kid in a candy store” never saw a kid in a grocery store.
  • B immediately ran over to the bakery to get free cookies for him and J (because hyper people obviously need a sugar rush). He gobbled his up, while J sat in the shopping cart slowly savouring hers.
  • Even though the cookies were small, with a few chocolate chips, J somehow got it smeared all over her. Remember when Augustus Gloop fell in the river, in Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory? She kinda looked like that.
  • While we looked at fruit, B attempted to load the cart up with raspberries and blueberries. Why? Because he thought they were a great buy, courtesy of the sign near them that said ‘Great Buy!’
  • We restocked the berries. As we walked away, B ran off. He unexpectedly sprinted back toward us, slid on his knees about 10 feet and just missed colliding into our cart.
Like Hall of Famer Sam Rice, B would have been safe.

Like Hall of Famer Sam Rice, B would have been safe.

  • We told him to stop running. He started to dance and strut bow-legged through the store.
  • While carelessly busting a move, he smashed into a bread stand, knocking baguettes all over the floor.
  • He pretended to fall in the organic section, so he could roll on the ground.
  • Ever try to talk to someone, but you can tell they aren’t listening, by their body language? Picture that, but with the person’s eyes darting manically, while standing crouched as if they’re a tiger about to pounce. That was me trying to calm B down.
  • Since things were getting out of hand, I decided to hold his hand. Shockingly enough, Mr. Non-Stop Frenetic Energy suddenly didn’t move. No really, he dropped and refused to walk.
  • After a stern talking-to, he did behave……for a few minutes. As I was browsing in the canned goods aisle, I turned around and saw B on the ground, again (He spent so much time on the floor, I doubt Fortinos had to sweep that night). This time, his shoes were about 15 feet behind him.

B – “Well, I was running so fast that I lost my shoes!”

  • J wanted out of the cart, to take part in the fun. Her and B then entertained themselves by running their hands along the items on the shelves. How no glass jars ended breaking is beyond me.
  • When shopping with kids, be prepared to be asked by them about whether they can buy something. Typically, the something is really random. In J’s case at Fortinos, she asked for two packs of underwear that she found in the clearance section. We said no, and told her to put them back. She, of course, didn’t. She hid them in the shopping cart, instead. Imagine my surprise when going to check out, and finding little girl panties behind the frozen pizzas.

Anyway, you get the idea. It wasn’t our greatest experience in a grocery store.

Please don’t get it twisted, though. More often than not, our shopping expeditions are pretty enjoyable. Quality family time.

On occasion, however, they are pure, unmitigated, ill-advised disasters.

To conclude, let’s take heed of the words of a wise man, who once stated the following, in fancy writing:

quote

Alright, alright, the wise man was me. I just made those words up now.  At least it sounds like a quote a real wise person would say.

Regardless, Happy New Year, y’all!

May your trips to the stores in 2016 be more peaceful than mine!

 

Feelin’ Blue

 

 

Like a lot of people in Canada, my family has gotten sick this year. We have a bad case of…..

Toronto Blue Jays fever!

For the first time in forever (word to Elsa and Anna), the Jays are a playoff team, And, for the first time ever, my kids (B especially)  are actually into the games.  For longtime fans like K and myself, it’s been real cool getting caught up in the excitement this year.

With all the excitement comes a lot of reminiscing. Not gonna lie,  it’s got me feelin’ a bit nostalgic, too, right now. Some of my favorite memories with my family have occurred at Jays games………

39058_413384633444_1648616_n

Me, B and my pimpin’ G-Unit shirt, at B’s first game.

At the very first game that we took B, too, when he was a baby, I caught my first and only foul ball!

Photographic evidence of said ball.

Photographic evidence of said ball.

Well……

Caught is a bit of an exaggeration. Aaron Hill ripped a ball towards our section. It looked like it was coming straight for our heads, but it ended up  ricocheting off the seats in the empty row behind us. I immediately hopped out of my seat, to run after it. I snatched the ball up right before an older lady with a cane could get to it. Yes, that moment looked as lame as you’re probably picturing it. BUT, before the other fans could boo me, I gave it to B.

Yay me?!

Nevermind, let’s move on.

CN_Tower_Rogers_Centre_B

One lazy weekend, when B was three years old, I scored a couple of primo seats to a game. They were like 10 rows up from first base. It was quite the adrenaline rush, walking down and down the steps, snacks in hand, to our seats. I imagined people in the rows farther back staring at us jealously, as we sauntered by.

The first two innings were great. We crammed our faces with food, while cheering on Toronto. By the third inning, we had run out of food/money, and B was super whiny about wanting to leave.

So, we left.

I imagined the jealous people before were now snickering, as I carried B with my head down up and up the never-ending steps. It was my first and only walk of shame. On the plus side, we did spend the remainder of the game exploring the Rogers Centre and the stuff around it so it wasn’t a total waste of a trip.

 

I decided a sequel was in order, about a year later.

Once again, I got a couple of seats last minute to a game, for B and I. Luckily for us, it was Fan Appreciation Day as well. Merchandise was heavily discounted, so I was able to get B his first real Jays jersey! I also got something for myself.

jerseys

Rickey Romero? Josh Johnson? If you’re such a big fan, why did you only hit up the clearance rack, eh, Mike?

 

 

 

 

Oh, shut up!

Anyway, during the game, they had a bunch of giveaways. You know the deal. Some random 90s dance music starts blaring, and the cheerleaders or whatever come out, with swag. Hats or shirts, typically. They tease tossing it for a bit, while you jump up and down, hoping that they’ll give it to you, before they finally end up throwing it to someone not named you. Usually a little kid. During the sixth inning,  B had been pretty good to that point, but he wanted to leave. Before we were going to go, though, it was giveaway time. One of the cheerleaders actually came down right beside us. She did the whole teasing thing for a bit while the crowd went bonkers…..and then tossed a hat to B! Our first and only swag snag! Unfortunately, it was an adult sized hat, so he couldn’t wear it. Don’t worry, I’ve put it somewhere safe.

11954693_10153286474548445_656840158025239453_n

What? My head is safe.

 

 

 

One more for you – during our road trip to Philadelphia, it turned out that Blue Jays happened to be playing the Phillies while we were there. So, of course we got some cheap seats and went to a game!

Our view from the cheap seats

Our view from the cheap seats

For real, I was a bit nervous before going. The fam was all rocking Jays paraphernalia, you see, and I had heard some horror stories about disrespectful Philadelphia fans. Fortunately, everyone there was cool. We didn’t get pelted with beer or anything like that.

About halfway through,  B and J started to get restless. I was worried that they might start making the people around us upset, if they kept acting up. Since we would probably never go to Citizen’s Bank Park again, we decided to walk around. Randomly, K ran into one of her friends, while waiting in line for food. Her friend had also made the trip down from Hamilton, to Philly. While they chatted, I noticed a bunch of big dudes were posing for pictures on the concourse. They were all decked out in Temple University gear. I asked one of the attendants what was up. She told me they were Temple’s football team, and they had a section reserved for them. Neat!

The line for food/K’s convo were both pretty long. As B and J ran around creating general chaos we waited, I noticed all of the big dudes were gone.  The attendant came over to me again, to chit chat. I casually mentioned how we were up in the bleachers before, but the kids were stir crazy there. She then told me that Temple’s team had left, and asked if I wanted to sit in their section. No one else would be there. Uh, our own private section? Heck yeah! So off we went, which is where we watched the rest of the game!

11219084_10153286474373445_8919538644149645517_n (1)

A view from our better seats

 

There’s more examples, but I’ve gone on about this for long enough. I think you get my point though. It just seems like, whenever we go to a Toronto Blue Jays game, there’s always something memorable about them (besides the fact that they always seem to lose when I’m in attendance. Sorry, T-Dot).

11811526_10153234799408445_4873189908850802680_n

11800612_10155970460340195_2656194480610007743_n

10502205_10152352229233445_5632145606260681353_n

 

11695030_10155915555545195_924460035220436250_n

Oh, hey there, NHL superstar Steven Stamkos.

It’s funny how some things can really bring a family together. In our case, it’s cheering on the Jays. Man, even their playoff run this season has been must-watch TV in our house!

 

Unless it's a late game, and you can't stay awake, so you curl up in a pillow case to sleep, instead. What do you mean no one else does that?

Unless it’s a late game, and you can’t stay awake, so you curl up in a pillow case to sleep, instead. What do you mean no one else does that?

 

It’s all good.

 

Go Jays go!

Talk That Talk

 

talktalk

I don’t discuss it very often on here, but getting the kids to go to bed remains an ongoing problem for us. The struggle is real, man. At this point, I probably have a better chance of winning the lottery, than I do of telling B and J to go to sleep and have them happily oblige, with no shenanigans.

Take the other night, for example. I’ll give you a quick back-story first, though. See, we recently got J a new ‘big girl’ bed, because she had outgrown her other one. When we told her of our plans to get a new bed, she was excited. Her bed game was gon’ be on fleek, yo! She couldn’t wait to sleep in it!

And then we we actually got the bed.

The first night, instead of rushing off to test it out, she refused to sleep in it. She argued that she wanted to sleep in our bed. Who needs a big comfortable spread to yourself, when you can be uncomfortably wedged between two adults? #kidlogic

Anyway, over the next few days, K and I came to the unfortunate realization that the only way to get J to go to her bed was through bribery or similar tactics. This brings me to the other night.

When the big bedtime moment came, J agreed to go to sleep in her bed, BUT with one condition – I had to sit in her room with her, until she dozed off.  Well, shut the front door! She seemed pretty tired, so I would probably be outta there in 15 minutes, I figured. I tucked her in, pulled up the rocking chair, and waited.

There was one other thing, however – J wanted to talk to me as she fell asleep. OK, cool, whatever.

Turned out, she had a lot of stuff on her mind. No joke, here is what she talked about, in chronological order:

  • She recapped the movie Cinderella, including numerous small details.
  • She recapped the movie Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, including numerous small details.
  • She recapped the movie Scooby-Doo And Kiss: Rock and Roll Mystery, including numerous small details.
  • She wished upon a star.
  • She fired me, just because.
  • She discussed what she wanted to have for breakfast the next morning.
  • We discussed why pudding isn’t a breakfast food.
  • She discussed what she wanted for dessert the next evening.
  • She insisted that I had to sleep in her bed, or else I would be in big trouble (side note: no, my daughter isn’t Michelle Tanner).  
  • She recapped what she did at daycare, including numerous small details.
  • She wondered if she was three years old, or three and a half years old. When told that she was three and a half, she listed off all of the important events which had to occur, before her next birthday. These included Halloween, Christmas, family members’ birthdays, and, uh, Thursday.
  • She invited me to her birthday party.
  • Apparently she was playing with a GPS or something, as she gave me precise directions on how to get to Grammy’s house (side note: if I followed her directions, I would not have gotten anywhere close to Grammy’s house).
  • She told me that she had a dream about Monday, Tuesday and Saturday. It was a scary dream.
  • She asked if “Fingers” was awake (side note: Fingers is a character I made up years ago, to entertain the kids. It is just my hand speaking in my normal voice, but B and J get a kick out of it. Some parents use puppets or toys; I use my fingers. Some parents are more resourceful and creative than me).
  • We had this exchange:

J (singing) – Fingers is bad! Fingers is bad! Daddy? I have to tell you something.

Me – What?

J (singing) – Fingers is bad! Fingers is bad!

  • She sang some real songs to herself quietly, before finally fading and passing out.

The 15 minute waiting time that I estimated was off by by about two hours. It was all good, though, as at least she was in her own bed!

I went to sleep not long afterwards. At 3:00AM, to my dismay, I was woken up……by J. She had come into our room, and was standing beside my rested head:

J – Daddy! Daddy! You are in big trouble!

Me – Why? What did I do?

J – You said you would sleep in my room, but you’re not. Now c’mon!

I honestly didn’t remember making such a deal. However, at that time of the night, exhausted and barely conscious, I wasn’t in the mood for a fight. So, I got up, stumbled down the hall, and snuggled up with her, in her bed.

Here’s the kicker: the next morning, when I woke up, I was alone. At some point, J got up (again), and went and slept in MY bed!

As comfy as my sleep was, it was obviously a less than ideal scenario. Yet, that’s how it goes in our house on a regular basis. #bedtimewtf

The struggle is real, man!

Imagine That

hcky

 

 

One of the cool things about small children is that they are easily entertained. “I’m bored!” is not  really in their vocabulary yet, so they can always find some way to amuse themselves.  Currently, my kids like to play ‘camping’, for example.  They can play that for like an hour at a time.  I have no clue what they’re doing.  They pile up a bunch of stuff (stuffed animals, toy shopping carts,  high heel shoes etc.) and then pretend to sleep under some blankets.

Whatever, though. The key point is that an hour of  them happily playing means an hour free for me!  I do the most productive things during this spare time, yo. You know, like chew through an episode or two of a show all of my child-less friends binge watched years ago, that I missed out on  (Did you know that Dan was the Gossip Girl, all along? OMG!).

Sometimes, a kid’s imagination is an uncreative parent’s best friend, for real. Other times, however, you gotta keep their imaginations in check. Those things can go 0 to 100 real quick, if you don’t.

B and I used to have this thing, where we would ‘zap’ each other. He’s pretty ticklish, so as a joking consequence to something, I would shape my fingers like a gun, poke him and make a buzzing sound, causing him to giggle. He started doing it to me, too, when I got out of line. My reaction was to act like I was being electrocuted.  It was stupid, I know, but it was easy to do, and it amused him, for some reason.

Last summer, I saw him zap a little girl. Just out of the blue.  She looked at him exactly like you’d expect she would, when a weird kid is poking her in the arm with his finger, while saying “bzzzzz.”. I then imagined what would happen if B ever got into a fight.  I’m pretty sure that a punch to the face trumps a zapper 100% of the time.

We don’t zap each other very much nowadays.

I’ll give you another example. It was an afternoon a few months ago. B was messing around, and he somehow found a sponge ball. So, randomly, do you know what he wanted to do with it?

Find a scantily clad woman and perform and elaborate juggling act?

Find a scantily clad woman and perform an elaborate juggling act?

Huh?

No, not that. Play hockey with it, that’s what he wanted to do!

Now, I’m not that into hockey (Sigh. Yes, I’m Canadian. Not everyone here is a hardcore fan), but we do own some mini sticks and nets. So, off to the basement me, B and J went.  National Hockey League, here he comes? Well……let me give you the Sportscentre recap of that afternoon’s events:

1) No goalie allowed (his rule), so I took a shot and scored. He dropped his stick, and hopped on J’s pink tricycle:
Me – ‘What are you doing?’
B – ‘It’s my break bike.’
Me -‘A break? From what? You didn’t do anything.’
B – ‘It’s my work bike. I’m doing my work.’
The work just involved doing laps of the basement, like a Zamboni driver. I grabbed a seat and waited.

2) Work’s done, so he picks up his stick again. We stand up, he whiffs on a shot, and then he’s back on the bike:
B – ‘OK, the Zamboni has to clean the ice now!’
He does more laps and talks to me about cleaning the ice, in a deep, manly voice.

It was like James Earl Jones' voice, but deeper.

It was like James Earl Jones’ voice, but deeper.

 

3) The ice is  apparently clean, and it’s time for more hockey! As soon as he parked the bike, J walked over to it, and started riding it. And as soon as she did, B whacked the ball as hard as he could and sent it flying into a pile of boxes:
B – ‘The ball is gone forever! I need a break.’
Me – ‘A break from what? You still haven’t done anything!’
B – ‘I need to clean the ice again!’
He chased J down, got the bike back, and did more laps. More manly Zamboni driving voice, too.
4) I found the ball, and started taking light wrist shots at him with it, while he was riding around. What? It was made of sponge, it didn’t hurt. I used to do the same type of thing at the driving range, to the person in the golf ball collector. Anyway, he got off the bike, and it’s game on, finally. He steals the ball from me, scores, and then tells me it’s my turn. I take a shot and the ball ends up flying into a box. Swish! So then:
B – ‘OK, it’s break time.’
Me – ‘A break from what?! You still haven’t done anything!’
B – ‘Can we play basketball?’
Me – ‘We don’t have your basketball. It’s in Mommy’s car.’
B – ‘Well I need to ride my bike then.’
More laps.

More laps.

Eventually the laps dissolved into him wanting to collide into stuff. J lost interest, so she headed upstairs. We soon followed.
Total time spent playing hockey – about 42 seconds
Total time spent not playing hockey – about 30 minutes
Sidney Crosby, your job is safe…..for now.

Doesn’t really matter. Whatever it was we played, it was still pretty fun.

Who could have imagined that?

Zamboni man, your job is safe too...for now.

Zamboni man, your job is safe too…for now.

 

Fear Factor

Sure, Joe Rogan, you can host this post.

Sure, Joe Rogan, you can host this post.

 

 

For real, I’ve never really been afraid of a lot things.  Horses and heights come to mind, but I got over those fears.  More recently, though, one thing scared me more than anything else:
Extended time on my own with both kids.

What?

I mean, my kids are my world,  I love spending time with them. Don’t get it twisted.  Thing is, before having kids, I honestly wouldn’t even hold other people’s babies, because I was worried that I would drop them.
So yeah, the first few months of Brax’s life,  with a fresh child and everything being new, I was petrified at being alone with him.  What was I supposed to do to entertain him? How do you stop his crying? The little guy was helpless and was totally dependent on me to take care of him. Holy nerve-wracking!  It took a while, but  it did eventually get to the point where K could go out comfortably and not to worry that she would come home to any serious damage/ injuries.  B would be fine, too.

Then, when J was born, those old fear feelings came back. You gotta be on point 100% of the time with kids. You turn your head for one moment, and things could get real ugly, real fast, for real.  Kids like to explore and do the most illogical, nonsensical stuff, so you need to watch them like a hawk constantly.  While I’m helping one with their jacket, the other one will sprint off towards an open door.  I leave the table to get them drinks, I come back, and they’re standing on their chairs leaning far forward, like they’re re-enacting Michael Jackson’s Smooth Criminal video.

 

That’s the basis for my fear, I think. They’re little maniacs. I don’t want them to get hurt on my watch, and I worry a lot about the consequences and ramifications if they do.

When it’s just me with the kids nowadays for a few hours, my gameplan involves staying home.  Ahhh, home. A nice, safe confined setting. But, occasionally, K is gonzo for an extended period of time.  When this happens, more often than not, the kids go stir crazy hanging out in the house all day, and I need to get them out. That involves leaving my comfort zone to go with them…on an outing.

Like I said, I do enjoy doing things with the family. But man, even with two parents, the process of getting ready, packing diaper bags, and even putting on their  shoes is an ordeal. Then while we are out and about, it’s  always an ordeal, never relaxing. I know, I know, as long as the kids have fun, that’s all that matters!! But eliminate one parent from the equation so the remaining one is outnumbered by the kids? You better batten down the hatches, it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Here’s an example. Our daycare provider went on vacation for a week, so K and I and some other family members took turns taking time off from work or whatever to watch  B and J. How’d my day go? Well…. First,  in the morning, while trying to get ready to leave, B was watching Youtube videos on the Playbook:
B – ‘Go away. I’m busy.’
Me – ‘Busy doing what?’
B – ‘I’m doing my job.’
Me – ‘What’s your job??’
B – ‘Watching this!’
Huh? He’s too young to be smarmy and indignant! I blame that jerk Max, from Max and Ruby for the attitude, by the way. Jeez, my disdain for that show is a post for another day.

Anyway, he did finish his job, and we could go…. But before we left, I went to our room to get my keys, and I heard a high pitched blood curdling scream. Yeah, remember what I said about my fear of them getting hurt?  I thought J was injured, so I rushed to see what happened.
Instant worst case scenarios flashed through my head. It was just B, fortunately, who screamed, not J.  He saw an ant. Anyway, we did  head out after that terrifying incident.

ant

Our trip took us to an indoor play gym (or as my one friend calls them – playgerms). In  theory, great idea. Just put the kids down, let them run amok, and I would join the other parents on parent’s row. You know, that area in every play gym where the dads sit around in tweed jackets, smoking pipes and reading the Wall Street Journal with their monocles. Or not. I don’t know what goes on in parent’s row, because I’ve never been there.  In actuality, I always end up chasing the kids around, and playing with toys, and trying to make sure that they don’t hurt themselves by falling the wrong way down the climby things. It really is a good workout. Anyway, besides all that, while we were there, J, who had been sorta been walking previously, but  just in baby steps (taking a few steps on her own before desperately seeking something to grab onto for balance, that type of deal) saw the other babies there walking by themselves.  She succumbed to peer pressure, and spent the rest of the day walking on her own too.  Peer pressure, that’s what I’m talking about!

Also these conversations happened:
B – ‘Well, there’s good news and there’s bad news.’
Me – ‘What’s the good news?’
B (takes my hat) – ‘I found your hat!’
Me – ‘Thanks? What’s the bad news?’
B – ‘Woody’s not coming back.’
Who’s Woody??

Woody, where did you go?

Woody, where did you go?

 

Then later:
B – ‘Dad, you’re bad.’
Me – ‘What did I do??’
B – ‘You hit me!’
Me – ‘No I didn’t!’
B – ‘Yeah you did, last week!’
Me – ‘No I didn’t!!’
B – ‘Yeah, you pretend hit me last week!’
Argh! I never touch him,  and I don’t know what pretend hitting is.  You might have noticed that B has a pretty vivid imagination.  Luckily, no one heard this exchange either.  What’s up with that?  It’s like my kids enjoy making me uncomfortable.   I remember one time, B walked out to the porch while we were trying to get ready to leave, and started screaming ‘HELP!’ for no good reason.   Whatever. We left the play gym, and it was onto the next one, as Jay-z says.

While driving, we passed a husky looking boy with long hair and man bosoms:
B – ‘Why does that girl have a big tummy?’
Me – ‘Uhh….that’s a boy. Maybe he has a slow metabolism?’
Silence.
B – ‘I have a big tummy too! I eat a lot!’

We ended up going to an Early Years Centre.  These places are sweet. Government run centres where parents/caregivers can go take their kids, and there’s a bunch of activities and programs to take part in. And they’re free.  AND it’s crawling with professional, trained, child care people. Even a clueless dummy like can have a sense of calm that the kids will be OK.  As a way to get out and kill some time, it’s a nice option.  We went there, and the kids  were doing their thing. Playing with toys, messing around in the sand station, and so on. It was getting close to closing time, and of course B didn’t want to leave, and was being stubborn about it. Remember what I was saying about them making me uncomfortable? Yeah openly  and loudly disobeying me in public definitely qualifies.  Don’t you just love when you have to put on a show in front of other people, so you don’t look like a bad parent? And then, when it doesn’t work,  you just do whatever you can to curtail the situation instead? No? Maybe that’s just me then?

Actually, knock on wood, I haven’t yet been that person storming out of Walmart holding their screaming kid on their shoulder like a  2×4 piece of lumber (K on the other hand, that’s a different story).

Anyway, to get him to leave, I bribed him with the incentive that we’d go for treats if we left right then. He insisted on ice cream. Insisted.  So we went and got some.  He of course dozed off in the car after we got it,  because that is totally what you do when you’re excited for something, so I had to frantically monitor the melting ice cream situation while driving.  I wasn’t very unsuccessful. The steering wheel ended up pretty sticky.  We got  back to the house, and ate in the backyard, because it was such a nice day.  B got it all over his face and hands,  and started complaining that he was cold. His teeth started chattering, he started shaking like he’s a Polaroid picture.

Shaking like he's fliming a Harlem Shake video also would have worked as an analogy.

Shaking like he’s fliming a Harlem Shake video also would have worked as an analogy.

He dropped the ice cream, freaked out, cried hysterically.  Awesome.   Had to  go inside, change him,  and wrap him in a blanket.
Then:
B – ‘Now can I have my ice cream back?’
Sigh. You know,  after writing this,  maybe I take it back.

Sometimes spending lots of quality time together on my own with my maniacs can be pretty cool. I think what I fear the most now, though….is  for my sanity as B and J grow up.

Can’t Knock The Hustle

One skill that I get to work on a lot at home is negotiation. Nothing is easy with the kids, that goes without saying.  However, B is in this phase where he’s always looking to cut deals, on basically everything.  Eating meals, bedtime, getting ready, cleaning up etc… all this stuff is done once a mutually beneficial agreement has been arranged. Do you know hard that is to live with? To constantly be negotiating? Next time that there’s a hostage that needs to be taken down, gimme a call,  I’ll send B over to take care of the situation.

 

Let's Make A Deal? Uh, no, B, let's not!!!

Let’s Make A Deal? Uh, no, B, let’s not!!!

Want an example? Alrighty yo. This conversation happened a few months ago:

Me – ‘OK, you can take three cars to bed tonight.’
B – ‘But I want to take lots of cars!’
Me – ‘No, just three tonight.’
B – ‘I want a few cars!’
Me – ‘How many is a few?’
B – ‘It’s lots.’
Me – ‘No, just three!’
B (picks up a car) – ‘I want this one, (picks up another) , this one (this goes on like twelve more times until he’s pulled out all of his Hot Wheels)
Me – ‘You’re not taking all of those, just three!’
B grabs as many cars as he can hold, and cradles them against his chest. And then:
B (picks up a car, adds it to his armful of cars) – ‘One. (picks up another, adds it). Two (and another). Three.’
Me – ‘Nice try! Just three. Here, I’ll pick them for you.’
I grab three cars.
B grabs two more – ‘And this one and this one?’
Me -‘That’s more than three.’
B – ‘But I want Stitch!’
B saw Lilo and Stitch a while ago, and he called one his cars Stitch. Why? I don’t know. I take a car away, and add Stitch.
B – ‘And Lilo!’
Me – ‘Who’s Lilo?’ I really didn’t know, I only know Stitch.

B (picks up an orange Chevy, adds it to the other three) – ‘This one.”

Me – ‘Is that Lilo?’

B – ‘No (picks up another car, adds it to the four). This is.’
Me – ‘That’s more than three! You can only take three!’
Anyway, eventually B did settle on three cars to take to bed. And that’s that, right? Wrong.
Half hour later, K went to check on him. I stupidly left the rest of the cars in the hall, and B sneakily went and got them. So, of course, K caught him playing with all his cars in his room. Naked, for no apparent reason too. I got him dressed, and had to lay the heavy on him:

Me – ‘So now we’re going to have to take all your cars away. Instead of three cars, you were sneaky, and now you don’t get any.’

And that’s that, right? Wrong.

Why?

B – ‘Can I play with my firetruck?’

Because, there’s always room for negotiation!

cars

Loading...
X