Subscribe (RSS feed)

<?xml version='1.0' encoding='UTF-8'?><?xml-stylesheet href="" type="text/css"?><feed xmlns='' xmlns:openSearch='' xmlns:blogger='' xmlns:georss='' xmlns:gd="" xmlns:thr=''><id>,1999:blog-4762930168389949250</id><updated>2016-01-13T12:59:46.577-05:00</updated><category term="Daddying"/><category term="parenting"/><category term="triplets"/><category term="Tuesday Trip Tip"/><category term="kids"/><category term="2016"/><category term="children"/><category term="food"/><category term="goals"/><category term="picky eater panic"/><category term="stress"/><category term="2015"/><category term="Christmas"/><category term="Dads"/><category term="Look Back"/><category term="Rand"/><category term="baseball"/><category term="daughters"/><category term="feeding"/><category term="fun"/><category term="girls"/><category term="good parenting"/><category term="multiples"/><category term="pink"/><category term="potty training"/><category term="series"/><category term="sleep"/><category term="time"/><category term="vacation"/><category term="#helpme"/><category term="3YO"/><category term="5 Reasons"/><category term="5 Things"/><category term="Nature v. Nurture"/><category term=""/><category term="Super Bowl"/><category term="WAHD"/><category term="age"/><category term="breastfeeding"/><category term="challenges"/><category term="college"/><category term="conspiracy"/><category term="crib"/><category term="diapers"/><category term="education"/><category term="fear"/><category term="funny"/><category term="games"/><category term="language"/><category term="life"/><category term="love"/><category term="parenting mistakes"/><category term="parenting traps"/><category term="pressure"/><category term="raising children"/><category term="sarcasm"/><category term="sexism"/><category term="sleeping"/><category term="society"/><category term="sports"/><category term="tantrums"/><category term="technology"/><category term="three-year-olds"/><category term="toys"/><category term="#DearDaddy"/><category term="#DearDaughter"/><category term="10-toys"/><category term="2015."/><category term="Aaron G"/><category term="Acho"/><category term="Andy Dalton"/><category term="Another one; multiples"/><category term="Art of Manliness"/><category term="Bad Guys"/><category term="Better parent"/><category term="Big Back Yard"/><category term="Brilliant Dad"/><category term="Bryan Caplan"/><category term="Bubble"/><category term="Bulling"/><category term="Bullying"/><category term="CHOP"/><category term="Care Norway"/><category term="Crooked Little Lies"/><category term="Crying"/><category term="Daddy Files"/><category term="Daddying fails"/><category term="Daddytypes"/><category term="Daunting"/><category term="Dawn of Dad"/><category term="Day of Dad"/><category term="Doorknobs"/><category term="Elf On The Shelf"/><category term="Ferber method"/><category term="Fisher Price"/><category term="Friday Five"/><category term="Grandma"/><category term="Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer"/><category term="Gremlins"/><category term="Groundhog day"/><category term="Guy"/><category term="Gymboree"/><category term="Hero"/><category term="IQ"/><category term="Inside Out"/><category term="Internet"/><category term="Least helpful"/><category term="Little Tykes"/><category term="Live Like Daddy Syndrome"/><category term="Michael Jackson"/><category term="Milestones in Music"/><category term="Miley"/><category term="Miley Cyrus"/><category term="Mistakes"/><category term="Moms"/><category term="Munchkin"/><category term="NFL"/><category term="NYTimes Magazine"/><category term="New Year"/><category term="Ninja"/><category term="No"/><category term="No gun challenge"/><category term="Not-so-great moments in parenting"/><category term="Part I"/><category term="Playhouse"/><category term="Power of 3"/><category term="Project: Get Rand To Sleep In His Crib"/><category term="SNAP"/><category term="SNAP Challenge"/><category term="Simon Says"/><category term="Smurfs"/><category term="Snow day"/><category term="Star Wars"/><category term="Step 2"/><category term="Super Cool Blue parents"/><category term="Swearing"/><category term="TV"/><category term="Thanksgiving"/><category term="Thriller"/><category term="Time travel"/><category term="Tommie Tippie"/><category term="Triple Paste"/><category term="Tripsitting"/><category term="Tuesday Tips"/><category term="Ug"/><category term="Uhu"/><category term="What scares me"/><category term="advertising"/><category term="aging"/><category term="annoying"/><category term="babies"/><category term="bad Dad"/><category term="bargain"/><category term="beliefs"/><category term="belly-sleeper"/><category term="bereavement"/><category term="best times"/><category term="blogs"/><category term="bottles"/><category term="bounce house"/><category term="boys"/><category term="broke"/><category term="candy"/><category term="celebrity"/><category term="cell phones"/><category term="characters"/><category term="child development"/><category term="child-free"/><category term="childhood"/><category term="childhood pressure"/><category term="chocolate milk"/><category term="circle of life"/><category term="classics"/><category term="cognition"/><category term="color"/><category term="colors"/><category term="contract"/><category term="correction"/><category term="counting to 10"/><category term="cribs"/><category term="crust"/><category term="culture"/><category term="cursive"/><category term="dad"/><category term="danger"/><category term="daughter"/><category term="deals"/><category term="death"/><category term="development"/><category term="developmental delays"/><category term="diaper rash"/><category term="dinner"/><category term="discipline"/><category term="divorce"/><category term="eating"/><category term="eight-in-ten"/><category term="environment"/><category term="expectations"/><category term="face time"/><category term="face-to-face"/><category term="fails"/><category term="failure"/><category term="fatherhood"/><category term="fathering"/><category term="faux fun"/><category term="fears"/><category term="flaws"/><category term="flowers"/><category term="food nets"/><category term="football"/><category term="formula"/><category term="frightened"/><category term="future"/><category term="gardening"/><category term="genetics"/><category term="going out"/><category term="government"/><category term="grand bargain"/><category term="grocery"/><category term="growing up"/><category term="guest post"/><category term="guns"/><category term="health"/><category term="healthy kids"/><category term="how not to parent"/><category term="independence"/><category term="information"/><category term="introvert"/><category term="intuition"/><category term="jail break"/><category term="jandalize"/><category term="jobs"/><category term="kizmit"/><category term="light"/><category term="lightning bolt"/><category term="logic"/><category term="managing"/><category term="manufacturing"/><category term="meltdowns"/><category term="memory"/><category term="milk"/><category term="minding the gap"/><category term="mirrors"/><category term="misanthrope"/><category term="molestation"/><category term="monotony"/><category term="movies"/><category term="nature"/><category term="naughty"/><category term="nerding out"/><category term="nightmares"/><category term="nurture"/><category term="office work"/><category term="old"/><category term="organizing"/><category term="parenting advice"/><category term="parenting; Daddying"/><category term="parks"/><category term="personal"/><category term="plans"/><category term="play"/><category term="poop"/><category term="posts"/><category term="potty"/><category term="pottying"/><category term="pregnancy"/><category term="preparing"/><category term="preschool"/><category term="pride"/><category term="princess"/><category term="princess culture"/><category term="punishment"/><category term="raising kids"/><category term="raising triplets"/><category term="reason"/><category term="redirecting"/><category term="regulations"/><category term="resolutions"/><category term="responses"/><category term="risk"/><category term="risk taking"/><category term="risks"/><category term="role models"/><category term="safety"/><category term="scary"/><category term="school"/><category term="school tales"/><category term="second time around"/><category term="self esteem"/><category term="self-esteem"/><category term="serving sizes"/><category term="sick"/><category term="sick kids"/><category term="smarts"/><category term="smoothies"/><category term="snacks"/><category term="songs"/><category term="spanking"/><category term="stereotypes"/><category term="studies"/><category term="super hero"/><category term="surgery"/><category term="swings"/><category term="tea"/><category term="tech"/><category term="television"/><category term="ten"/><category term="texting"/><category term=""/><category term="time of our lives"/><category term="toilet"/><category term="transportation"/><category term="triplet dads"/><category term="two-year olds"/><category term="universe"/><category term="vaccines"/><category term="video games"/><category term="wild things"/><category term="women"/><category term="words"/><category term="work"/><category term="work from home"/><category term="work it out"/><category term="work-from-home"/><category term="working at home"/><category term="worry"/><category term="writing"/><category term="zombies"/><title type='text'>Triple The Dad</title><subtitle type='html'>We tried for one, and we ended up with a bushel of fun.</subtitle><link rel='' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href=''/><link rel='hub' href=''/><link rel='next' type='application/atom+xml' href=';max-results=25'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><generator version='7.00' uri=''>Blogger</generator><openSearch:totalResults>147</openSearch:totalResults><openSearch:startIndex>1</openSearch:startIndex><openSearch:itemsPerPage>25</openSearch:itemsPerPage><entry><id>,</id><published>2016-01-12T04:18:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2016-01-12T04:18:01.580-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="Dads"/><category scheme="" term="kids"/><category scheme="" term="Moms"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><title type='text'>Don&#39;t Try This Alone</title><content type='html'>First, let me say I don&#39;t know how single parents do it. I really can&#39;t imagine how single parents of multiple kids do it. I guess at least then you can ask the twelve-year old to watch the kids when you need that occasional time off. I guess. Still don&#39;t know how you manage it, but I guess.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Secondly, let me just say that my kids are great. During a recent spout of illness by my wife they were quiet and played well and generally made life much, much easier on themselves, myself, and our family - right at a time when we needed it most. Kuddos kids.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Thirdly, that my wife is pretty great as well. As a working Mom she struggles with many of the same things other working Moms struggle with: does she spend enough time with the kids; is she being enough of a &quot;Mom.&quot; I was surprised that she struggled with that last one. She is a strong, reasonable, rationale woman (normally).&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But there she was on recent evening, asking me if she was a &quot;good Mom.&quot; &amp;nbsp;Rather than simply give her a quick &quot;of course,&quot; I risked life and limb by asking her what she meant. Because, honestly, I don&#39;t want my&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;kids to grow up like me&lt;/a&gt;, so why should her being a good Mom have anything to do with my opinion. &amp;nbsp;But secondly,&amp;nbsp;I&#39;m not at all convinced that meeting the standard for &quot;good&quot; parenting&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;&amp;nbsp;is all that hard&lt;/a&gt;. &amp;nbsp;Have you lost your kids today? &amp;nbsp;Is the child still breathing? &amp;nbsp;Ok, you are off to a pretty good start, then. The band for &quot;good&quot; is pretty wide and flexible. You can do what most people would consider an awful job parenting and entirely by accident instill a drive to succeed just to spite you; or push them like the dickens out of love and make them resent you and crush them.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Or the exact opposite.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Because, as much as we make raising children or caring for kids this herculean and Sisyphean task, we often don&#39;t have to.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Kids, mine at least, hardly even need me around. &amp;nbsp;Of course, I&#39;m exaggerating, little kids literally&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;need&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;you around. &amp;nbsp;But how much is enough? &amp;nbsp;At what point are the returns diminishing? &amp;nbsp;As @stressfreekids says: Kids need your optimism. &amp;nbsp;There is a real nugget of truth there. &amp;nbsp;Because being around 8 hours a day, but being miserable the entire time, does nothing for your kid. &amp;nbsp;Kids are little mimicry machines. &amp;nbsp;They model the behavior they see. &amp;nbsp;They may see you 8 hours a day, but what are they really&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;seeing&lt;/i&gt;. If it is how stressed out and miserable you are, then spending 8 hours or 10 hours, or 12 hours won&#39;t matter. It won&#39;t make you a &quot;better&quot; parent than someone you spends 4 hours of happy, fun times with their kids. It certainly won&#39;t make you a &quot;good Mom.&quot;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;If you spend all day with your kids, you might slowly collect hours, or days, or even years more time with you child than a Mom who heads off to work every morning. But if part of being a stay-at-home Mom is that you spend some of your day waiting for your husband to come home and fix something or suggest dinner options, what are you really teaching your kids?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;In my mind, its much better to be a working Mom who sees her kids 3 hours a day and be optimistic and chipper and involved with your kids, truly involved, than be a stay-at-home Mom who is life weary and who feels trapped.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;A kids&#39; whole world is wonder and love. As a result, kids are an ocean of love into which you contribute drops, each one adding a little to what already exists, not a planter you have to constantly refill day after day at the risk of killing the plant.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;My own Mom spent periods of being a stay-at-home mother and periods where she worked. All in all, I think the more you can expose your kids to the possibilities of the world, the better off they are. That isn&#39;t to say stay-at-home parents are doing their kids wrong. They aren&#39;t. Being a stay-at-home parent is a great thing. But being a working a parent lets your kids know that both women AND men work AND care for the kids. Conversely, I think &lt;b&gt;both&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;parents should be &quot;primary&quot; caregivers. You don&#39;t have to parent 12 hours per day. Four good hours outweigh 12 miserable ones any day, in my book.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But it goes further than that. &amp;nbsp;I remember being a kid, thinking the world was this place of limitless opportunity and potential. &amp;nbsp;Now that I&#39;m older I wouldn&#39;t say I&#39;ve given up on that, but I&#39;m more self aware and more world aware. &amp;nbsp;I realize now that there are limits to the opportunity and potential out there. &amp;nbsp;But I still want my kids to think of the world as this limitless place. &amp;nbsp;As kids they only know the world and the limits I give them. &amp;nbsp;By being involved with my kids but also working, my kids are seeing - I hope - Dad as a person who can be both involved and employed. &amp;nbsp;In fact, for decades this is what we saw Dads as, because the vast majority of Dads worked.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Why wouldn&#39;t that be the same for Moms?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And all of this ignores one simple thing about working Moms: Moms get the benefit of the doubt. Because I work from home about half the time, a larger portion of childcare falls on me. Who gives them snacks? Me. I make dinners and give them breakfast about 75 percent of the time. When we can&#39;t arrange care, I&#39;m the default fall back. My point: I&#39;m around. A lot. And I&#39;m not overly disciplinarian; you could argue I don&#39;t discipline enough.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And yet in the span of two days I&#39;ve had one of my boys tell me I hate him and the other tell me that Mom is his favorite. When it comes to the game of parenting, Moms start out several moves ahead of Dads.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I know what you are thinking right now: Where did this lovefest come from? The question isn&#39;t where it came from, but why it is so long in coming, I guess.</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Don&#39;t Try This Alone'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2016-01-07T14:07:00.003-05:00</published><updated>2016-01-07T14:07:44.324-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="2016"/><category scheme="" term="blogs"/><category scheme="" term="future"/><category scheme="" term="goals"/><title type='text'>Better Bryan XVI: The Blog Goals</title><content type='html'>So here we are, the first week of 2016. We spent the week reviewing 2015, which is already a distant speck in the rear view mirror. But looking forward, what are the goals for 2016?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Post every week:&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;This ties in to a couple other goals, but I&#39;d love to post at least once every week (every week being 51 weeks - guy gotta take a vacation). I put up 39 posts in 2015. I&#39;d like to put up no fewer than 45 this year, with the absolute goal being 51, as I said.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Grow the blog:&amp;nbsp;&lt;/b&gt;This isn&#39;t a numbers thing (that is below). I&#39;d like to come up with another feature for the blog. Something like What We Are Eating Wednesday that features pictures of what we ate that week. I&#39;ve flirted with a &quot;30-Seconds With Triplets&quot; feature that I may break out.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Grow the numbers&lt;/b&gt;. I&#39;d to write well enough and promote often enough that no single month in 2016 is lower than my slowest month in 2015. That won&#39;t be all that hard to accomplish. My bigger goal, and I&#39;m almost hesitant to post it, is that in 2016 I break my monthly record for visitors set way back in July 2015. On a more macro level, I&#39;d like to see more visitors in 2016 than I did in 2015.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;The Book Project:&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;Maybe I&#39;m crazy, maybe not. But I&#39;d like to try to publish an anthology of blog posts from myself and other Dads. Its a severe uphill slog, I realize. But I&#39;d like to say at the end of 2016 that I gave this idea a fair shot. What is a fair shot? Decent promotion fishing for writers. If they aren&#39;t there, if no one is interested, so be it. But next year at this time I&#39;d like to at least look back and say I gave this one a fighting chance and it just wasn&#39;t there.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Say hi more:&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;More posting on other parenting blogs and participate in more linkys this year.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;More pics: &lt;/b&gt;I like when the posts have pics. And while I do it, I&#39;m hesitant to post pics of the kids - at least regularly. So I better get creative, because I would like most of the posts in 2016 to have visuals (hey, look, I&#39;m failing already!).&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;There, that is it. Those are the goals for 2016. Are there any goals you think I should go after? Anything a blogger like myself should be trying or doing or aspiring too? What are your goals for you blog/personal life in 2016? Let me know in the comments.</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Better Bryan XVI: The Blog Goals'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2016-01-06T11:29:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2016-01-06T11:29:00.784-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="2015"/><category scheme="" term="2016"/><category scheme="" term="goals"/><category scheme="" term="Look Back"/><category scheme="" term="multiples"/><category scheme="" term="series"/><title type='text'>A Look Back At 2015: Part III</title><content type='html'>&lt;i&gt;Everyone&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;makes New Year lists. And yes, later this week, I too will reveal&amp;nbsp;&lt;b&gt;my&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;New Year list. After a few years in remission, Better Bryan will be rejuvenated as Better Bryan XVI.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But for now, I wanted to take a look back at how I did on&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;my goals for 2015&lt;/a&gt;. So each day this week I&#39;ll be taking a quick and short look at one of my goals and how I did. Then we can mock how pitifully it all went and later this week I can wipe the slate clean and set up new goals. In yesterday&#39;s post we looked at two goals I completely dropped the ball on. Today tees up a more satisfactory result.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&lt;b&gt;More reading.&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp; This one is personal, rather than blog related. &amp;nbsp;I have always been a voracious reader. &amp;nbsp;But for a couple years there I didn&#39;t really much of anything other than directions on formula. &amp;nbsp;I&#39;ve gotten back into reading of late and I want to continue this.&lt;/blockquote&gt;I&#39;d say its a success, although &quot;more&quot; is both pretty nebulous and a low bar when formula instructions and board books are the deepest stories you read. No matter, 2015 was a banner year for book reading since the kids were born. But that is the magic of setting goals, you gotta make some fluff ones so you can point out your successes!&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/b&gt;&lt;b&gt;FAIL LEVEL: NONE - EASY PEASY!&lt;/b&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='A Look Back At 2015: Part III'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2016-01-05T11:29:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2016-01-05T20:03:51.665-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="2015"/><category scheme="" term="2016"/><category scheme="" term="goals"/><category scheme="" term="Look Back"/><category scheme="" term="multiples"/><category scheme="" term="series"/><title type='text'>A Look Back At 2015: Part II</title><content type='html'>&lt;i&gt;Everyone&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;makes New Year lists. And yes, later this week, I too will reveal&amp;nbsp;&lt;b&gt;my&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;New Year list. After a few years in remission, Better Bryan will be rejuvenated as Better Bryan XVI.&lt;br&gt;&lt;br&gt;But for now, I wanted to take a look back at how I did on&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;my goals for 2015&lt;/a&gt;. So each day this week I&#39;ll be taking a quick and short look at one of my goals and how I did. Then we can mock how pitifully it all went and later this week I can wipe the slate clean and set up new goals. In yesterday&#39;s post we looked at two goals I completely dropped the ball on. Today tees up a more satisfactory result.&lt;br&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&lt;b&gt;More outreach. &amp;nbsp;&lt;/b&gt;I&#39;m very interested in growing the readership here by guest posting and commenting more on some of the sites I read, and generally interacting more with them.&lt;/blockquote&gt;I had some of my posts appear on other sites during 2015, and I did some light commenting on other sites. I participated in quite a few link ups. All of which resulted in better page views for me. This blog started way back in April 2012, but it began in earnest in September 2014. Every single month in 2015 was better than any single month from the last three months of 2014. Most months my readership exceeded November and December 2014 &lt;b&gt;combined&lt;/b&gt;.&lt;br&gt;&lt;b&gt;&lt;br&gt;&lt;/b&gt;&lt;b&gt;FAIL LEVEL: NONE - SUCCESS!&lt;/b&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='A Look Back At 2015: Part II'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2016-01-04T11:41:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2016-01-04T11:41:04.712-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="2015"/><category scheme="" term="2016"/><category scheme="" term="goals"/><category scheme="" term="Look Back"/><category scheme="" term="multiples"/><category scheme="" term="Part I"/><category scheme="" term="series"/><title type='text'>A Look Back At 2015: Part I</title><content type='html'>&lt;i&gt;Everyone&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;makes New Year lists. And yes, later this week, I too will reveal &lt;b&gt;my&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;New York list. After a few years in remission, Better Bryan will be rejuvenated as Better Bryan XVI.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But for now, I wanted to take a look back at how I did on &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;my goals for 2015&lt;/a&gt;. So each day this week I&#39;ll be taking a quick and short look at one of my goals and how I did. Then we can mock how pitifully it all went and later this week I can wipe the slate clean and set up new goals. We start today with two more nebulous goals.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The first:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&lt;b&gt;More calm.&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp; I&#39;m already a big fan of demonstrating calmness to my kids. &amp;nbsp;We talk about taking deep breathes when we are angry and going to our happy places. &amp;nbsp;Not much makes me happier than when my kids are in a high stress place and tell me their happy place is &quot;their home.&quot; &amp;nbsp;But I want to do more. &amp;nbsp;I don&#39;t always model perfect behavior in this realm, and I know that if I want my kids to be on board with this, I have to do better myself.&lt;/blockquote&gt;Yeah... four-year olds suck. Four was a tough year. We have back talk and attitude and spunk out the wazoo. I wish I had seen that coming when I made this goal. Alas, its a poor excuse. Everyone can remain calm when its calm all about them.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;FAIL LEVEL: HARD.&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The second:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&lt;b&gt;More movement&lt;/b&gt;. &amp;nbsp;No, this isn&#39;t an exercise-related goal. &amp;nbsp;I want more movement on the book I&#39;m writing. &amp;nbsp;Did you know I&#39;m writing a book? &amp;nbsp;How could you, since I work on it so rarely. &amp;nbsp;But I am, at least, I would be, if I ever made a move to edit it. &amp;nbsp;And more movement on my goal of learning program, too. &amp;nbsp;And, well, why not? More exercising in 2015 too. I mean, it wouldn&#39;t be a new year post without an exercise goal, right?&lt;/blockquote&gt;Welp, this started off poorly. I think I edited a couple hundred words. I rewrote the story a dozen times in my head, which is something, I suppose. I think I have it plotted better, such that it matters. I&#39;m not going to make excuses (I have triplets) or explain why this didn&#39;t work out (did I mention it was a hard year) or tell you about how &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;I started going into an office this year&lt;/a&gt;. Again...&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;FAIL LEVEL: HARD.&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/b&gt;&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='A Look Back At 2015: Part I'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-12-31T16:38:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2016-01-09T10:52:52.086-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="beliefs"/><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="kids"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><category scheme="" term="wild things"/><title type='text'>My Kids Believe Some Wild Things</title><content type='html'>First off, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. It is the holiday season, so this is going to be a quick and fun post. If you want something more serious, you can look my struggles with my daughter&#39;s self esteem&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;, my blah attitude about the death of cursive &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;, and why I&#39;m a very bad person &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; imageanchor=&quot;1&quot; style=&quot;clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;&quot;&gt;&lt;img border=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;240&quot; src=&quot;; width=&quot;320&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;All kids believe in some clearly wild ideas. Santa. The tooth fairy. Heck, some parents believe vaccines cause disease, so its hard to blame the kids.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But mine might be taking it to new levels.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;For instance, my one son will repeatedly tell me how I&#39;m the best Dad he knows. Its sweet. And gosh, its hard to deny. But I&#39;m also pretty much the only Dad he knows. I guess his other point of reference is the Dad from Peppa Pig. Have you seen that guy? He&#39;s a half shaven, rotound pig with the manners you might expect of such a guy. Its a bit surprising he isn&#39;t usually adorned with a can of beer in his hand and food stains on his clothing. This suddenly sounds like damning me with faint praise.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;separator&quot; style=&quot;clear: both; text-align: left;&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;My daughter believes she sleeps with her eyes open. OPEN.&amp;nbsp;Seriously.&amp;nbsp;And she has a fairly airtight case; except of course for all of human knowledge. She laughed hysterically when we told her that sleeps with her eyes shut. To her, its simply dark at night. She sees us when she goes to sleep, and she sees us when we come in to her room, so of course her eyes are open the entire time. She even reasons out how we see her eyes closed when she sleeps in the car - of course her eyes are closed then, its sunny out.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;My son thinks Cheetos dipped in 100% pumpkin tastes like strawberries. Cheetos. Dipped. In. Pumpkin. At his insistence, I tried this concoction. All I can say is that if I hadn&#39;t &lt;i&gt;seen&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;him eating strawberries, I would wonder if he had any idea what strawberries are. An alien who has never tasted strawberries couldn&#39;t come up with a less accurate description than Cheetos dipped in pumpkin. Cheetos. Dipped. In. Pumpkin.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;For this next story, you have to know I&#39;m bald. Early on, I convinced the kids they had taken my hair. As in, they would grab at my head and &quot;hide&quot; my hair behind their back. Did they really believe they took my hair? They were young - probably 2ish - so who knows. They seemed convinced.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;In between performing ballet moves she doesn&#39;t actually know, my daughter exclaimed&amp;nbsp;today&amp;nbsp;that I don&#39;t have any hair, and that I am a Daddy desert.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Whatever that means.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;&lt;img alt=&quot;thumbnailsize&quot; border=&quot;0&quot; src=&quot;; style=&quot;border: none; max-width: 100%;&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='6 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='My Kids Believe Some Wild Things'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>6</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-12-22T19:31:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2015-12-22T19:34:01.274-05:00</updated><title type='text'>We&#39;re Getting Pink Eye - And Tonsillitis - For Christmas</title><content type='html'>Yes, Christmas Eve isn&#39;t until tomorrow, but I already received the best gift I could get this year. How? Let me set the scene for you:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;My kids&#39; preschool holds &quot;special days&quot; for each child. On those days, that child is the line leader, gets to tell the class what the weather is like, and brings in a secret item in a share sack for which they give clues and the class has to guess.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;It is a pretty big deal for the four-year-old set.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;But probably the&amp;nbsp;&lt;b&gt;biggest&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;deal is that a parent or other adult goes to school with them that day. Our kids have brought both Mom and Dad, a grandparent and our Nanny to their various special days. It is a big deal.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And we love it. Its great for them and fun for us. But four months into the school year we are now firmly into a second time around this merry-go-round. For parents with one kid in the system its not a big deal. Everyone month or two they go into school. For us, its pretty much every month, often twice or sometimes three times., and nearing the end of the year, we aredays off, , we already been around the entire class once and are deeply ensconced in our second trip. I&#39;ve been on one such trip.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;THAT was how this post was &lt;b&gt;going&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;to start. Back when it was a soft, nice piece titled The Best Christmas Present Ever.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Instead, I&#39;ll say this. The family has been battling one illness after another for two straight weeks. It all started one Saturday night when I got a stomach bug. That turned into Liam and Mommy getting the stomach bug. We came out of that into Rand getting a head cold, and right from there Sadie got the stomach bug.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And then she got these really swollen eyes and head cold. We did our due diligence and called and talked to the doctor on call Saturday, who said its almost &lt;i&gt;never&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;pink eye. Almost never.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Except when it is.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And this part is a little gross, but the RN who treated her for tonsillitis and pink eye thinks the pink eye originated with... the stomach bug. That is right, she got pink eye, most likely, when something in her vomit worked its way into her eye.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;i&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/i&gt;&lt;i&gt;Vomit. In her eye.&lt;/i&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;i&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/i&gt;So, go ahead kids, take anyone to school you like. Heck, take the neighbor.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Just be well for Christmas. And don&#39;t give me pink eye.&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='2 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='We&#39;re Getting Pink Eye - And Tonsillitis - For Christmas'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>2</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-12-17T01:30:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2015-12-17T01:30:05.083-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="#DearDaddy"/><category scheme="" term="#DearDaughter"/><category scheme="" term="Care Norway"/><category scheme="" term="daughters"/><category scheme="" term="pressure"/><category scheme="" term="self-esteem"/><title type='text'>Dear Daughter</title><content type='html'>&lt;div class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;Care Norway has a &lt;a href=&quot;; rel=&quot;nofollow&quot; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;new video&lt;/a&gt; out on YouTube supposedly detailing the life a woman. The video takes the form of an unborn girl&#39;s letter to her father. It comes complete with a #DearDaddy hashtag. And loads of crap.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Are you kidding me?&lt;/div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;separator&quot; style=&quot;clear: both; text-align: center;&quot;&gt;&lt;iframe allowfullscreen=&quot;&quot; class=&quot;YOUTUBE-iframe-video&quot; data-thumbnail-src=&quot;; frameborder=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;266&quot; src=&quot;; width=&quot;320&quot;&gt;&lt;/iframe&gt;&lt;/div&gt;I&#39;m not saying middle school-aged girls aren&#39;t called the names mentioned in the video (whore and slut are specifically name dropped) nor that teenage boys don&#39;t make sexual advances on teenage girls. Both happen. The little girl makes a point of reminding her Dad that he probably did many of the same things growing up. He probably did. I&#39;m sure that if, showed a video of my life, I&#39;d be embarrassed about lots of it. So would my wife, most likely. So would you, I&#39;m guessing. Life isn&#39;t something we are born knowing how to do. Our 20-year-old selves often have different goals, values and understanding than our 40-year-old selves. As it should be. We shouldn&#39;t want or understand things the same way at 20 as we do at 30 or 40.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;That isn&#39;t to excuse bad behavior, it just explains why it maybe looks different to a Dad at 40 than a kid at 20. The name calling mentioned in the video is especially uncalled for. But will every woman be subjected to those names in high school? Seems unlikely, but if its true, its inappropriate and sad. And while unwanted sexual advances - while the girl is so drunk she can&#39;t stand straight - are equally unacceptable. But figuring out the when and what of the sexual advance dance is at least a part of the process of growing up. We aren&#39;t born knowing how to make advances on those in whom we have interest. Occasionally one person is going to lean in for a kiss that, having entirely misread the signs, is not something the other person wants.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;No, boys should not be shoving their hands down girls&#39; pants without consent. But is that really something that happens &lt;i&gt;twice&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;by the age 16? The woman in the video is raped at 21, as if its just a matter of course for women. Is that the world we live in? I refuse to believe this is true. It isn&#39;t.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Look, it doesn&#39;t make it right, but consent, how society and manners operate and hormones are confusing things during the teenage years. That doesn&#39;t make it right, but it makes it tricky. For both girls &lt;b&gt;and &lt;/b&gt;boys.&amp;nbsp;The &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;good news&lt;/a&gt; is that fewer teens are partaking in conduct that can lead confusing situations to become even more confusing. There are certainly things we as society need to clean up. We could lose our focus on all things marketed toward girls being pink, for instance. But we do ourselves very little good as a society, &lt;a href=&quot;;postID=5222566537177202358;onPublishedMenu=posts;onClosedMenu=posts;postNum=42;src=link&quot; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;and do our daughters actual harm&lt;/a&gt;, by pretending they are &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;these weak flowers whose lives will be less because they are born female&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;or because wear pink.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Maybe most of the women I know and work with are secretly walking around with vast emotional damage caused by growing up as women. Maybe. I haven&#39;t heard of it. I kind of doubt they are, at least in any way or any proportion that differentiates them from the men I know.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But creating a society that believes women are somehow victims of out-of-control men is a dangerous road to go down. Nor is the answer to post a bunch of pictures on Facebook about how if you date our daughters us Dads will come to the door with a gun. We need to stop demonizing men as predators, pretending our daughters are unable to protect themselves, and ignoring that they are also actors in this play. Guess what? The majority of time when two teens have sex &lt;b&gt;both&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;of them are into it.&amp;nbsp;Yes, there are cases where our daughters are probably put in uncomfortable and dangerous situations. &amp;nbsp;No, that doesn&#39;t make those situations OK. But ignoring the reality doesn&#39;t fix those situations.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And that brings me to the bulk of my post:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;Dear Daughter;&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;Despite what you might hear, being a girl is not the &quot;biggest danger of all.&quot; Your life is not ruin because of it. Don&#39;t ever believe it.&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;I&#39;m not going to tell you that there aren&#39;t bad people out there. You&#39;ll meet boys who think they can pressure you into sex or who will call you names because of things you do, or don&#39;t do. But don&#39;t for a minute ever demonize men as a group. Because you&#39;ll meet plenty of girl friends who will also bully you for the things you do - and don&#39;t do.&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;And you&#39;ll also meet plenty of guys who are respectful. If I&#39;ve done my job, you&#39;ll know your worth. If I&#39;ve done my job, you&#39;ll be able to recognize the people who don&#39;t treat you properly. Maybe not every time and maybe not in every circumstances; but most of the time and often enough. Sorting out the wheat from the chaff, the good from the bad, those you want in your circle of friends from those you don&#39;t, is part of life. It is a ongoing process. Yes, even for your Dad.&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;That doesn&#39;t mean you should take or accept abuse. You shouldn&#39;t. But you should never think that its the way it is. Oh, sure, you&#39;ll read about a lot of bad people and bad events. Its easier and &quot;sexier&quot; to report on that one bad event than it is to report on the 10 people who are helping an elderly person by mowing their lawn or visiting with kids in a hospital. So don&#39;t you ever think your life is doomed to be full of insults and assaults. It isn&#39;t. There are good people out there. Lots of them. You&#39;ll find them.&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;&amp;nbsp;And yes, you&#39;ll have to wade through some bad people to get there. Some of those people just won&#39;t be a fit for you. And some will be awful, evil people. But in any bunch as large as the one you&#39;ll encounter in your life you are bound to find some people bad apples. That doesn&#39;t mean every apple is bad.&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;Don&#39;t ever believe it.&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote&gt;Love,&lt;br /&gt;Your Dad&lt;/blockquote&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Dear Daughter'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-12-10T03:35:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2015-12-14T10:00:44.158-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="#helpme"/><category scheme="" term="girls"/><category scheme="" term="self esteem"/><category scheme="" term="women"/><title type='text'>A Dad Struggles With His Daughter&#39;s Self Esteem</title><content type='html'>My daughter came up to me on one recent Saturday and said&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;Daddy, I&#39;m not pretty.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;I&#39;m not going to lie: A little portion of my soul died right then. And it wasn&#39;t just the words, it was the sad way she said them. I was cut a thousand different ways.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;One of my focuses in parenting is trying not to just tell my kids something is &quot;good&quot; but explain why. Maybe its their use of several colors, or how they linked the colors, or how they stayed within the lines. I try to have a &quot;why&quot; for when something is &quot;good.&quot; This is doubly true for my daughter. I try not to emphasize the fact that she is truly beautiful too much and instead emphasize her &lt;i&gt;other&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;qualities. I figure society and even her &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;educators&lt;/a&gt; will spend enough time convincing her that looks are important and that she can&#39;t do&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt; math and science&lt;/a&gt;.&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;amp;rct=j&amp;amp;q=&amp;amp;esrc=s&amp;amp;source=web&amp;amp;cd=11&amp;amp;cad=rja&amp;amp;uact=8&amp;amp;ved=0ahUKEwj9vPzYrafJAhVGlh4KHSz7D-kQFghsMAo&amp;amp;;amp;usg=AFQjCNFT1XakeAMP2NmV8mmaNSZEJVpoAQ&amp;amp;sig2=Y7Qx8JqLsdsiFr58IzBMWQ&amp;amp;bvm=bv.108194040,d.dmo&quot;&gt;I can spend my time convincing her that other aspects of her are important.&lt;/a&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;Daddy, I&#39;m not pretty.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;It isn&#39;t like I never tell her she is pretty. I&#39;m well aware I do it; maybe more than I realize. We sometimes call her Pretty Little Lady Bug for heaven&#39;s sake. But there it was, her telling me she wasn&#39;t pretty. Had I spent so much time on other tasks that I neglected to show her she &lt;b&gt;is &lt;/b&gt;beautiful?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I bit down hard, trying not to make my discomfort evident; trying not to let her see the fear, angst, worry and failure ricocheting around my head. Self-esteem, and especially girls and beauty, is a touchy subject. Then again, you never know how much a 4-year old &lt;i&gt;means &lt;/i&gt;what they are saying; or even if &lt;i&gt;what&amp;nbsp;they are saying &lt;/i&gt;is &lt;i&gt;what&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;they are trying to say. I could be overreacting to a simple statement and in the process plant some seed of doubt in her head. All because...&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;Daddy, I&#39;m not pretty.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;I wanted so badly to... Do what exactly? &lt;b&gt;Fill her with light. &lt;/b&gt;That is probably the best way to explain it. But what the hell does that even mean? Hulk out and SMASH that self doubt? Without super powers or a light gun, I have to hope what I did was the right thing.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;What exactly did I do, you ask? I told her that of course she was pretty. To which she reiterated that she isn&#39;t pretty. Then she wanted to know how would I even know if she was pretty, when she isn&#39;t.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;So I picked her up, hugged her, and took her off by herself. Just Daddy and her. And I explained all the things that make her pretty. Not just her superficial beauty like like her button nose and bright eyes, but her inner beauty, like the fact that she is so caring and empathetic.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Which immediately elicited questions about how her insides can be pretty. Had I convinced her? Had I totally confused her? Was that response a win, or a fail? I guess you can check back in 10-to-20 years and find out.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Because as with so much in parenting; I&#39;m not even sure I did the right thing. All I know is one thing is banging around in my head:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;Daddy, I&#39;m not pretty.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='4 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='A Dad Struggles With His Daughter&#39;s Self Esteem'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>4</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-12-03T10:21:00.001-05:00</published><updated>2015-12-03T10:21:03.496-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="#helpme"/><category scheme="" term="Christmas"/><category scheme="" term="football"/><category scheme="" term="role models"/><category scheme="" term="tea"/><title type='text'>The Examples Parents Set</title><content type='html'>While the weather here in the Northeast might not be tipping you off, radio music and decorations and such might have given you the hint that we are fully engulfed in another Christmas season. As part of that, my wife and I are having our kids purchase gifts for other members of the family. So on a recent Christmas shopping trip my wife attempted to suss out what the kids might want to buy Daddy by asking them what Daddy likes.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;They responded with &quot;tea and football.&quot;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;table cellpadding=&quot;0&quot; cellspacing=&quot;0&quot; class=&quot;tr-caption-container&quot; style=&quot;float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;&quot;&gt;&lt;tbody&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; imageanchor=&quot;1&quot; style=&quot;clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;&quot;&gt;&lt;img border=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;300&quot; src=&quot;; width=&quot;400&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td class=&quot;tr-caption&quot; style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;Why? Why do my kids think this about me?&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;/tbody&gt;&lt;/table&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Which is fair enough. I &lt;i&gt;do&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;drink tea pretty much every day and it is football season. But my interests are broad and varied. Broader and more varied than most, in my experience.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;At first I laughed it off. Kids, amirite? You can go crazy reading the tea leaves behind a four-year old&#39;s thinking and logic.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But its been a week now and there the comment sits, crouched at the edge of my subconsciousness like some sort of demented Nightmare-Before-Christmas version of &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Elf on the Shelf&lt;/a&gt;.&amp;nbsp;And its throwing sharp little pebbles at my actual consciousness.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Football and tea.&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Is &lt;i&gt;that&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;really all my kids can come up with about me? Shouldn&#39;t they have a broader understanding of their Dad? Or is it me? Maybe I&#39;m not setting a&amp;nbsp;broad-enough example? What about my other interests? I do like other things. Like, um, reading, chess, a recent love of watches, long walks and ... Wait, this is starting to sound like a dating profile. Maybe if I provided more examples of what I liked my kids would &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;branch out more themselves&lt;/a&gt;? Fortunately, or unfortunately, I&#39;m not a big fan of pushing my interests onto my kids; what I call&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Live Like Daddy Syndrome.&lt;/a&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;If you&#39;ll let me whine for just a moment, its really hard to have interests - at least interests your kids can see - when you have triplets. A lot of my efforts and interests are hung up in time and triplet management. Those kids&amp;nbsp;&lt;b&gt;are&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;my interests. Ok, /rant.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But take a look at that list: Chess. That is a bit much for a four-year old. Reading. Pretty much every word I read is at work, after they go to bed, or on a cereal box. Watches. Nothing more exciting to four-year olds than clothing and accessories. I&#39;m that weird person who actually enjoys working out, but good luck trying to work out around four-year olds.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;What do I do, because I&#39;m not sure what I expect. I guess I&#39;ll try to direct my kids&#39; play a little more than I do now. But what do I want the end result to be here? I&#39;m not sure I have an answer for you. If you have an answer for me, pound away on the keys in the comments section.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;In the end, I guess if my kids were going to have such a short lists of things that interest me, I would prefer them have answered: our family!</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='1 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='The Examples Parents Set'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>1</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-11-25T03:13:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2015-11-25T03:13:00.608-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="Christmas"/><category scheme="" term="Grandma"/><category scheme="" term="Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer"/><category scheme="" term="sarcasm"/><category scheme="" term="songs"/><title type='text'>Did You Ever Notice: Grandma Was A Raging Alcoholic</title><content type='html'>Happy Thanksgiving.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;The holiday season is now firmly upon us. Once the turkey settles a little lower in our guts, the football games end and the Black Friday sales start, its Christmas music season again. I get why some people hate it. But our family falls firmly in the love it category: We started listening to Christmas music on Nov. 8 this year. I relish every &amp;nbsp;Christmas decoration, every advertisement, and every song. No matter how early.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;And with Christmas song season comes the comedic songs, like Domonic the Donkey, My Two Front Teeth, and every single one of the Chipmunks&#39; Christmas songs. These are mostly fun songs you can feel safe singing with your kids. And then there is &lt;a href=&quot;;amp;ion=1&amp;amp;espv=2&amp;amp;ie=UTF-8#q=grandma%20got%20run%20over%20by%20a%20reindeer%20lyrics&quot;&gt;Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer&lt;/a&gt;; an awful song with a terrible message about codependency and alcoholism.&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;Seriously.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;The entire song is essentially an open letter smearing Santa in the hopes of blackmailing him into a settlement. Sure, there are no overt demands made, but that is part of the scheme&#39;s cleverness. No demands, no blackmail, right? But think about it, here we have an angry, intolerable alcoholic who tangles with the beloved Santa on Christmas Eve and what does her family do? They publicize it in an effort at diverting shame and liability and in a clear attempt to secure more presents.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The evidence:&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;b&gt;First: Grandma Is Probably A Raging Alcoholic.&lt;/b&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div&gt;The song clearly states that she had been drinking too much eggnog. Lest you think its the type they sell in grocery stores, the song also notes she:&lt;/div&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: inherit;&quot;&gt;&quot;&lt;span style=&quot;background-color: white; color: #222222; font-family: &amp;quot;arial&amp;quot; , sans-serif; line-height: 14.6545px;&quot;&gt;staggered out the door into the snow&quot;&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;Grandma is staggeringly drunk. So Grandma has either been chugging the eggnog pretty good during this party or she pre-gamed.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And&amp;nbsp;I&#39;m guessing she needed that medication that night. &lt;i&gt;Right&amp;nbsp;then at that moment&lt;/i&gt;. There aren&#39;t many medications you desperately need to take - drunkenly walk home in a snow storm at age 90 desperately - that don&#39;t react poorly with alcohol.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Regardless, she wants to head home and get her medication. And her drunken state is typical enough of Grandma that no one bats an eye at letting her wander off into a sub-30 degree winter wonderland.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Oh sure, they &quot;begged her not to go.&quot; We all know how that &quot;begging&quot; goes.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Second: The Family Didn&#39;t Really Like Grandma Very Much&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/b&gt;Because ask yourself this: if your staggeringly drunk grandmother needed to go home in a snow storm to get desperately needed medication, would you let her walk more than a handful of houses? Wouldn&#39;t you offer to go along with her?&amp;nbsp;And if that trip included traversing a snow-filled neighborhood, wouldn&#39;t offer to drive her? Yet this grandmother was so beloved they let her drunkenly stagger out into the snow.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Alone. For the sake of kindness I&#39;ll assume grandma lived just down the block. But that opens its own can of worms when we get the next line:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;When we found her Christmas morning.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;Wait!&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;When you found her Christmas morning?&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;Grandma staggered out into the snow to go get critical medication, and no one thought to go look for her until the next day? What the hell were you doing all the while? Lets assume that after 3 hours, someone thought &quot;hey, you know what, its getting pretty late and Grandma sure has been gone a while.&quot;&amp;nbsp;What exactly happened here?&amp;nbsp;How did this go down? The family placed a call to the house and Grandma didn&#39;t answer so they just gave up?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;If Grandma goes missing in a snow storm and she doesn&#39;t answer her phone, you send out a search party for her, right? You wouldn&#39;t simply hang up and assume your drunken, medicine-dependent Grandma made it home in a snow storm, would you? No. But if she is close enough to stagger home in a snow storm, how hard could it be to find her? We already established that she can&#39;t be more than a handful of houses away.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And I can&#39;t repeat this clearly enough: &lt;i&gt;there is snow on the ground&lt;/i&gt;. Is it believable that these people can&#39;t track the shambling, snow-bound footprints of their drunk Grandma?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Or is it more likely they simply never looked?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Third: Grandma Was A Mean Drunk&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/b&gt;It is more likely the family simply never looked. Why? Lets look at how is the family handling this loss. Pretty well, actually, as the narrator admits. Grandpa is taking it particularly well.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;See him in there watchin football, drinkin&#39; beer and playing cards with cousin Mel.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;The two of them do seem to be taking this &lt;i&gt;awfully &lt;/i&gt;well&lt;i&gt;.&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;Maybe because after years of abuse cousin Mel is happy to celebrate a quiet holiday without the threat of the police showing up when Grandma accuses someone of stealing from her. Grandpa is probably relieved to finally be free of Grandma&#39;s yoke. The two of them have been putting up with decades of Grandma&#39;s ridiculously dramatic stunts, like &quot;forgetting&quot; her medicine, berating everyone else for it and shaming everyone around her for their role. You have to assume that either the family just simply refused to go with Grandma to get her medication because of how horrible a drunk she is or that she belligerently declined an escort.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And then we get this line:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;Its not Christmas without Grandma&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;Of course its not Christmas without Grandma. Who is going to pass out drunkenly into the Jello mold this year after bitterly accusing everyone of giving her shitty gifts in some kind of poorly planned and thinly veiled effort to wiggle their way into her will?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Not Grandma, that is for sure, because no one thought to walk her home or check on her when she never came back.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Nice.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Fourth: The Plan To Smear Santa&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;So if this story isn&#39;t really about how awful Santa is but about a drunk Grandma, what is the point? I&#39;d suggest its an attempt at extortion.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The thing about it is, there isn&#39;t really any evidence the family is at a loss of any kind. In addition to Grandpa and cousin Mel playing cards and generally carrying on as if nothing happened, the narrator is singing a fun, upbeat song and the rest of the family is dressed in black. That is the lone evidence of mourning: the family is dressed in black. That is literally the least you can can do.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The rest of the song haphazardly smears someone everyone recognizes is a good guy. But this smear campaign has all the subtlety of a two-year-old child with a broad brush. First, the song mentions the family found Grandma - the &lt;i&gt;next day&lt;/i&gt;, as we&#39;ve said - with hoof prints on her forehead&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I&#39;ll be the first to admit this doesn&#39;t look great for Rudolph and crew. But consider for just a moment that our kindly elf might have taken time away from his usual Christmas Eve business to try and help the clearly&amp;nbsp;intoxicated Grandma. Knowing what we know about Grandma, its completely possible she struck the reindeer, who, being an animal, simply responded in the only way it knew how.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Next, the family suggests they found incriminating Klaus marks on poor Grannies back? Those are harder to justify. Boy does that look bad.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But I&#39;ll leave you with this... the family that couldn&#39;t be bothered to walk or even drive Grandma to her nearby home to get her medicine, or &lt;i&gt;even go look for her after she disappeared&lt;/i&gt;, suddenly becomes all action when they smell an angle.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;I&#39;ve told all my friends and neighbors, better watch out for yourself&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;So while walking a few doors down for Grandma&#39;s heart meds proved simply too much work and imposition, the narrator already managed to spread word of a 1-in-Oh-I-don&#39;t-know-12-trillion risk from Klaus hit and run far and wide.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Maybe if he had used some of that motivation Grandma would still be with us.&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Did You Ever Notice: Grandma Was A Raging Alcoholic'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-11-18T16:32:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2015-11-18T16:32:00.179-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="babies"/><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="good parenting"/><category scheme="" term="how not to parent"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><category scheme="" term="picky eater panic"/><category scheme="" term="raising kids"/><category scheme="" term="vacation"/><title type='text'>My One Piece Of Advice</title><content type='html'>When it comes down to it, parenting is pretty much a crap shoot. It is like rolling a 100-sided die and having to pick the exact number it will land on. And getting it wrong means you&#39;ll have poop or permanent marker smeared on your face. Sure, you know all 100 numbers backwards and forwards, but that won&#39;t help you when you have poop lodged inside your nostril or a poorly drawn mustache on your face for that important work meeting.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Because outside of a steady routine, just about anything else you do can be either entirely wrong for your kid, or the best parenting choice you could make. The worst part is you don&#39;t know which is what until its done. You can set strict rules and raise a good, god-fearing and law-abiding citizen who excels at everything he does; but you are just as likely to end up with some psychopath. You can provide no rules and raise a a free-spirited rebel, Gerry Garcia type; but you are just as likely to raise the next Charlie Sheen. It has as at least as much to do with the genetics of that particular kid as anything&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;you&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;do.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;Add into this soup a little flavor: a lot of what you may&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;think&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;you know about parenting is wrong; &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;as in scientifically proven wrong&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Forcing kids to eat veggies? Yep; wrong. Check out that link above. Or read about the Picky Eater Panic &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;, and why you probably don&#39;t need to push veggies&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;, or well, more about it&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Doing homework with your kid seems like an important and foolproof method of good parenting. Done properly, that simply must be correct. Nope. Wrong again. And not just w&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;rong&lt;/a&gt;, but potential deleterious as well.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Life, and parenting, would be better if it was as simple as applying Parenting Method Y in Family Family A while applying Parenting Method X to children in Family B. But no. &lt;i&gt;Each&amp;nbsp;&lt;/i&gt;kid from Family A probably need their own unique parenting method.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;In a perfect world maybe someone could come up with a parenting manual. And outside the fact that that baby would be something like 120,132 pages long, with requisite footnotes, is the fact that there wouldn&#39;t be one manual. There wouldn&#39;t even be one manual titled TripeTheDad Parenting Manual. There would be a manual titled Parenting&amp;nbsp;TripeTheDad&amp;nbsp;Child 1, a second titled Parenting&amp;nbsp;TripeTheDad&amp;nbsp;Child 2, and so on and so on. And&amp;nbsp;none of&amp;nbsp;the manuals would apply to anyone else. It would be like if every single car required its own unique manual.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;As a anecdotal aside, we got home from a short weekend vacation recently, upon which our 4-year-old daughter asked us where babies come from. We gave her the stock answer: when a Mommy and Daddy love each other they choose to have a baby. Done is done, right?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Nope.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;She wants to know ... does someone &lt;i&gt;give &lt;/i&gt;you the baby, or do you make it, or what? No, we tell her, Mommy and Daddy make one. And now she wants to know how exactly Mommy and Daddy go about making one. I mumbled through the best answer I could, knowing it was much more awkward for me than for her. Then I did what every good parent does - I headed to the internet for advice. I&#39;m now fully prepared for a follow up from her that will probably never come. Instead I&#39;ll get blindsided by a question from my boys I can&#39;t answer.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;That is part of my point above. Because those boys could care less about babies.They haven&#39;t given this a minutes thought, as far as I can tell. My little girl though, without much prompting or pushing, and with full access to the same toys and shows the boys watch, has come to focus on babies and their care. Its inherent in her DNA.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Each child requires its own unique parenting manual.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;If you&#39;ve read this far, this is starting to sound like a &quot;what not to do&quot; rant. You may well be starting to wonder whether I have any insights on what to actually do. What is that one piece of advice I promised?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Remember that vacation I mentioned? Take it. Because nothing revitalizes you and makes you miss your kids and their crazy antics like being away for a day or two. Suddenly hanging onto to your shirt collar is cute again, rather than annoying.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And take it without reservation. Kids are an ocean of love into which more is to be poured, not a cup that needs filled endlessly. Your day away will not deprive them.</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='My One Piece Of Advice'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-11-06T12:40:00.000-05:00</published><updated>2015-11-06T16:08:55.435-05:00</updated><category scheme="" term="Better parent"/><category scheme="" term="time"/><title type='text'>How Can I Be A Better Parent?</title><content type='html'>&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;My last few posts have been pretty down beat. There is the one about how I yell at my &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;kids too much&lt;/a&gt;; and don’t forget the one where I compare my kids to Darth &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Vader&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;So its been a rough couple of weeks. But each of these posts has had a single uniting theme underpinning it: I think every single time I butt heads with my kids comes down to my own flaws.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;There. I said it.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;When my kids are playing right up to and past their bedtime and I can’t wrangle them into bed; &lt;a href=&quot;;postID=8794269543036199744;onPublishedMenu=posts;onClosedMenu=posts;postNum=40;src=link&quot;&gt;when they won’t get their shoes on to leave the house to buy THEIR snack&lt;/a&gt;; when they want more snack than common decency dictates; when they want more TV time or tablet time; the times when they ask the most inane questions, or when they won’t get their own underwear despite standing &lt;b&gt;right next&lt;/b&gt; to the drawer.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Well, OK, maybe that last one isn’t on me.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But the rest? &lt;a href=&quot;;postID=8654665325796503063;onPublishedMenu=posts;onClosedMenu=posts;postNum=30;src=link&quot;&gt;If it isn’t time travel&lt;/a&gt;, I think they are &lt;i&gt;all &lt;/i&gt;on me. When they play past bedtime its mostly a failure to leave enough time. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Indeed, I’ve known for a while that my own personal stress is often at the heart of the conflict.&lt;/a&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;In fact, the failure to plan or leave enough task time is the cause of 90 percent of conflicts with them. After all, is it their fault I started dressing them 10 minutes before bedtime? Maybe in some isolated cases they are fighting me, but mostly it’s a failure to act quick enough.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;This was especially true last night. Last night the wife was out so I was on my own. The kids and I trekked upstairs super early. Which we &lt;i&gt;never&lt;/i&gt; do. We mostly do this because the vast majority of their toys are downstairs, but also because we tend to go upstairs at a scheduled time.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;We got upstairs so early that the chase game we usually play before right before bed was finished with an hour to go. I used the transition to get them pajama’ed. And while that brought a few howls about wanting to play more, I quickly explained that we had plenty of time to play. Hey, who says you have to wear normal clothes right up until bed time. Why can’t you change them at 7 for an 8:30 bedtime?&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But that is just the thing: I caught that transition perfectly. Instead of interrupting play with mere minutes before bedtime and telling them no more play could occur, I was able to get what I wanted &lt;b&gt;and&lt;/b&gt; what they wanted.&amp;nbsp;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Bonus.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And all through the miracle of better time management.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Going out is the same thing. It stresses me when we are trying to leave and for complicated time-space-travelling reasons can’t get out the door. But leaving more time to get out the door, even if it seems like a ridiculous amount of time to leave to simply get into a vehicle, helps everyone out.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And then we have the inane questions. Questions like: &quot;Daddy, what does Liam have for snack.&quot; Even though she can see what he has for snack in his bowl, which is right beside her. And its not like I gave him some type of seaweed and sushi combo. His snack looks &lt;i&gt;exactly&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;like hers. Those questions really wear on me. But what kind of Dad gets upset when his daughter asks him what snack her brother has? An impatient one, that is who. One who needs to learn to slow down, calm down, and generally be wound down a bit.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;You live and you learn. Life, and parenting, are about the journey, not the destination. I’m not a perfect parent, and I doubt I will be even with my new found knowledge. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;And that is OK.&lt;/a&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;i&gt;Do you have any tips or suggestions about how to be a better parent?&lt;/i&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='4 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='How Can I Be A Better Parent?'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>4</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-10-29T13:51:00.001-04:00</published><updated>2015-10-29T13:51:31.553-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="bargain"/><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="deals"/><category scheme="" term="grand bargain"/><category scheme="" term="nerding out"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><category scheme="" term="Star Wars"/><title type='text'>This Deal Is Getting Worse All The time! </title><content type='html'>Parenting is a grand bargain.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;As the title alludes, its along the lines of the one between Darth Vader and Lando Callrissan in Star Wars. Parents would like to think they play the Darth Vader role, but in reality, its the role of Lando.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I know I know: Vader means father and the entire series is a father-son drama. But think about the similarities between the parent-child and Vader-Lando relationship.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;In the movie, Lando provides Vader a place to secretly house troops while laying his trap. In return, Lando receives, well, some semblance of freedom and power from the deal, I suppose.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The bargain between parents and kids offers little meaningful differences. In exchange for security and food, kids generally promise to follow the rules. The big secret here is that the law requires you to provide at least base amounts of security and food. Just like Lando, you have certain rules you already have to follow to varying degrees.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Vader suffers no such restriction. And your children? They entered into this bargain, just as Vader did with Lando, but there are no rules requiring them to listen to you, just as there was nothing requiring Vader to comply with Lando&#39;s request. &lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;This leads to the second big secret: the kids follow along with this deal only on their own terms, really. Just as Vader could change his arrangements with Lando. Kids could at any time just stop listening to their parents at any time. This usually happens in the teen years, I imagine, but there is literally nothing to stop a four year old from simply not following commands other than them being really, really small and the way their brains are wired.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I&#39;ve been thinking about this over the four months or so since my kids turned four and Vader&#39;d our deal. At times they have been simply unmanageable. One simply isn&#39;t impressed with anything I do, regardless of its outcome for him. Another simply won&#39;t stop whining.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;It wasn&#39;t just that they were no longer paying attention. The third told me he would cut me with a knife and later jumped out of a time-out seat to hit me. That rises to a Luke revealing his true powers to Jabba leve of attack.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Did I just compare myself to Jabba the Hut? Yeah, I guess I did.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The kids were definitely more fun during this time. They play actual games now. We do fun things both indoors and out. Heck, we have impromptu baseball games in the driveway. But the bargain had been broken.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I wish I could tell you I was leading you to some grand conclusion where I would reveal the secret to remaking the bargain.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The truth is I was as powerless as Lando to make any changes. The kids hold all the power. If they want to stop listening, there isn&#39;t much we parents can do about it. We simply kept at it; giving timeouts and taking away things they held dear. Destroying the death star, if you will.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='This Deal Is Getting Worse All The time! '/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-10-22T02:37:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-10-22T02:37:00.044-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="annoying"/><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="flaws"/><category scheme="" term="kids"/><category scheme="" term="mirrors"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><title type='text'>Kids Are Mirrors That Reflect Us</title><content type='html'>&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;The other day I got really down on myself about how much I was yelling at my triplets.&amp;nbsp; It seemed like not a day was passing where I wasn’t expressing frustration or anger.&amp;nbsp; If the constant fighting wasn’t triggering me, it was the way they managed to make a 30 second process take 30 minutes.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Now listen, my kids are really good.&amp;nbsp; They listen fairly well and are independent, sometimes to a fault.&amp;nbsp; Graded on a 4-year-old curve, I would say they are pretty great.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But even on vacation I found their gross stalling galling.&amp;nbsp; During a time I hypothetically am at my most relaxed, I couldn’t handle how something as simple as getting swim trunks on required the intervention of the National Guard.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Thankfully, I was buoyed by others – or enjoyed a bit of &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;schadenfreude&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;at least– when I posted my personal disappointment on a Facebook group for triplet dads.&amp;nbsp; Turns out, it wasn’t just me.&amp;nbsp; Lots of Dads felt the same way.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;One of them was on a two-day trip to Legoland with the goal of not yelling.&amp;nbsp; Not once.&amp;nbsp; Lofty goal.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I&#39;m fully aware parents &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;can and do fail &lt;/a&gt;and that its OK. But it got me thinking: could I go two days?&amp;nbsp; Could I go two whole days without yelling at my triplets, regardless of what they did?&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I’ll be honest: I worried I couldn’t.&amp;nbsp; And I didn’t have Legoland to compete with.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;Too much of their behavior annoyed me. The constant badgering on questions they knew the answer to, the giant time sucks they represent, the lollygagging, the need for constant satisfaction. The fighting.&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;But as I wrote this post I realized something else. Everything that annoys me about my kids is a flaw of my own.&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Kids Are Mirrors That Reflect Us'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-10-14T13:00:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-10-14T13:00:03.459-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="Dads"/><category scheme="" term="No"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><category scheme="" term="redirecting"/><title type='text'>There Is &quot;No&quot; Business Like Parenting</title><content type='html'>&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Did you know kids hear the word “no” a staggering &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;400 times per day&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;No? You didn’t? Then think about that: 400 times per day. 2,800 times per week*. More than 11,000 times per month. Per year that comes to 132,000 times.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;That is a bunch. A soul crushing amount of rejection, even for a group of individuals deliberately challenging authority and seeking to locate the outer bounds of permissible behavior.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;No wonder parents often feel like they are constantly at odds with their kids.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I’d like – love – to think we are a little different. We try to keep the “no” to a minimum. Now, before you go get your spouse so you can mock this crazy guy on the internet who sets no rules for his kids and is bound to raise delinquents, hear me out.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;We might well be hippies raising future delinquents; or drones raising management material. As with all things, how you view yourself and how you actually act can be eye opening, but stick with me.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;You see, rather than say “no,” we try to redirect. In the toy isle, its not “no,” its “you can have that when you have saved up enough money.&quot; At snack time, we don’t say “&lt;i&gt;no&lt;/i&gt;, you can’t have Cheesy Poofs;” instead, its “you &lt;i&gt;can&lt;/i&gt;have apples or fruit.” At bed time it isn&#39;t &quot;no, we can&#39;t play that;&quot; instead its &quot;maybe we can play it once.&quot; To which they always ask for three, or five. But that is just a chance to negotiate to two, which I was always going to do anyway. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Always better to under promise and over deliver&lt;/a&gt;, as I say.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Can they go to Jumpy Jumpy today, they wonder? Of course they can&#39;t. First, its Sunday, secondly, its 8 p.m. Rather than simply shoot them down though, I&#39;ll suggest that maybe Wednesday would be better. Yeah, that is the plan. Let&#39;s go Wednesday. Suddenly a potentially sad situation is a future to look forward to!&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;The difference is slight, I admit, but I think it really truly helps. First, we are really denying our kids anything. We are simply moving the goal posts a bit. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;Redirecting&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;Teachers&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;do it all the time. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;Redirecting&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;is a time proven method of avoiding conflict.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Its also a great management technique for everyday life. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Who at their job likes to be told “no”? Really, no one likes to be told no. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But if you offer an alternative, you can usually arrive at an answer that makes both parties feel happy with the outcome. That is all we are really doing.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;The question is, is it a hippie-dippy move, or an upper management jujitsu-type move.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;* Want to see just how weighty the word &quot;no&quot; looks typed 11,000 times in a row? Well, how about 2,800 times?** Sure you do. So here it is. This is what your kid hears &lt;b&gt;every week&lt;/b&gt;:&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;NoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNoNo&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;**See what I did there?&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='There Is &quot;No&quot; Business Like Parenting'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-10-01T04:03:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-10-01T10:15:49.299-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="cursive"/><category scheme="" term="school tales"/><title type='text'>This Dad Doesn&#39;t Care If Cursive Kicks It</title><content type='html'>&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Apparently, people are really up in arms about the death of cursive. Were you aware there is a controversy over the potential that they won&#39;t teach cursive handwriting in schools? The issue involves BOTH kids and education. So course there is.&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Regardless, I wasn’t aware until I saw a post on Facebook about it. According to the poster, unless we fight to revive cursive’s corpse, our children are doomed to a future where kids won’t be able to read historical documents. &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;My first thought: write a post about the cursive controversy. Then I reconsidered – is this a real controversy, or just some silly thing stirred up by a bored writer? Nope, it’s real;&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;amp;ion=1&amp;amp;espv=2&amp;amp;ie=UTF-8#q=is%20cursive%20dead&quot;&gt;768,000&amp;nbsp;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;Google&amp;nbsp;&lt;/span&gt;results&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;for “is cursive dead” real. Speaking of Google, I wonder if those cursive campaigners have you seen it? As you know, Google catalogs pretty much all of human knowledge. And cat memes. You know what you don&#39;t see on it? Cursive. There is room for 1.45 million cat memes, and not cursive.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But ignore for a moment how few times life tasks students with reading original historical documents. There are lots of things I hope my 4-year-old triplets learn from schooling. Cursive? That ranks about near the bottom, well below skills like critical thinking, programming, computer skills, or money management.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I’d be pretty upset if in the future they come home and say “hey, good thing I learned cursive, because I have plenty of bankruptcy and unemployment forms to sign!” &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Ancient Knowledge&lt;/b&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I’m not even sure why the lack of cursive skills would prevent them from accessing the knowledge of the ancients. I don’t know ancient Greek or Latin. Yet I can read the thoughts of Plato and Aristotle fine. I’m not really versed in Old English either, but I can muddle through Shakespeare well enough. Last I checked, they don’t teach hieroglyphics in school, and yet someone, somewhere, manages to decode them. And I did all that without Google.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;table cellpadding=&quot;0&quot; cellspacing=&quot;0&quot; class=&quot;tr-caption-container&quot; style=&quot;float: right; text-align: right;&quot;&gt;&lt;tbody&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; imageanchor=&quot;1&quot; style=&quot;clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;&quot;&gt;&lt;img alt=&quot;Cursive; cave writing. Both begin with C. Coincidence?&quot; border=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;320&quot; src=&quot;; title=&quot;&quot; width=&quot;240&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td class=&quot;tr-caption&quot; style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;Some of the rights don&#39;t apply &lt;br /&gt;if not written in cursive.&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;/tbody&gt;&lt;/table&gt;Oh, sure, maybe the kids won’t be able to read the document in its &lt;i&gt;original form&lt;/i&gt;. Have you ever looked at the Constitution? Here i&lt;a href=&quot;;amp;ion=1&amp;amp;espv=2&amp;amp;ie=UTF-8#q=little%20constitution%20book&quot;&gt;s a pocket version of the constitution.&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;Thanks again, Google. I have something similar. Notice in the picture that someone somewhere managed to convert it from cursive to type.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But maybe with all the time we spend loading porn onto the internet we haven’t gotten around to loading the important stuff. Maybe the U.S. Constitution missed out on the digital revolution?&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Nope&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;, it’s right here&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;. Whew! Unfortunately,&amp;nbsp;I&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;can read&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;cursive and its not legible.&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;Current Worries&lt;/b&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;It turns out people have been worrying about the death of cursive since at least &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;2009.&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;Which is understandable. It is our nature for us to want our kids to learn what we learned. But that tendency is also located in the same part of the brain that tells us kids these days are lazy do-nothings who have it easy. Unlike those of us who walked to school uphill. Both ways. In snow. Without shoes.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Google makes so much of what we learned in school - naming the presidents in order, for instance - irrelevant. Google can recall those things in less time than it takes us to name even the first state. Its &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Alabama&lt;/a&gt;, BYW. Thanks &lt;i&gt;again&lt;/i&gt;, Google. So Google does all the heavy fact lifting, freeing our minds up for critical thinking&lt;br /&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I wouldn’t have guessed from all the &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;pearl clutching&lt;/a&gt;, but this is more long-term trend than current catastrophe. Cursive started dying out as early as the 1920s. That means our grandparents actually started giving it up. And those people walked up hills twice as high as ours, in snow twice as cold.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And p&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;eople born after 1980 have almost completely &lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;abandoned cursive&lt;/span&gt;.&lt;/a&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;How completely? Michelle Wolrich, a high school teacher in Florida, says her students do not regularly use cursive. She suspects some cannot read it. But Wolrich remains a big supporter and was thrilled to learn the school where she enrolled her son teaches it as early as second grade.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;What does she love about it?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&quot;It is a beautiful script. It is elegant. It is traditional and historical. I guess I just like knowing how to write in two distinct ways and am a traditionalist when it comes to writing skills.&quot;&lt;/blockquote&gt;I think Woolrich raises legit points at the heart of the issue of our desire not to have cursive kick it. But she also related a horrible story about how they broke her grandmother&#39;s hand to rid her of that horrible disease known as left-handedness. All so she could write in cursive.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I was born in 1976, so the SS Cursive Corpse hadn’t yet sailed off into the sunset when I was in school. My own particularly awful elementary school&amp;nbsp;experience with cursive isn&#39;t as awful as Wolrich&#39;s, but its not exactly tame, either.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;b&gt;My Story&lt;/b&gt;&lt;br /&gt;My story begins some time around second or third grade in the class of a teacher we can call Mrs. Kline. I really have no other recollection of Mrs. Kline and would disguise her name if I had any idea what it really was.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;On day Mrs. Kline mentioned during class that couldn’t locate any sufficiently legible writing samples from “Harry” to display for parents. Instead of privately telling Harry this, she said it for the entire class to hear.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;This was bad enough. It was made all the more awful because I laughed. Looking back that wasn’t really very nice. But hey, I was like 8. Also, I have a hunch I&#39;m kind of a jerk sometimes.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;And then came the piling on.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Because, as bad as it was to this point, Mrs. Kline made it all the worse by saying: “don’t laugh, I could only find one of yours.” That is right. She doubled down by not only reprimanding me for laughing, but by pointing out my deficiency; in front of the class. I recall they all snickered. Mrs. Kline said &lt;i&gt;nothing&lt;/i&gt;about that&lt;i&gt;.&lt;/i&gt; At least, that is how I recall it happening.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Of course, if cursive goes the way of Latin, we won’t be able to sign our names. Not that it will make a big difference in a biometric world where we use our fingerprints and retina scans to sign things.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But maybe cursive isn’t really dead. &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt; doesn’t think cursive will die so easily&lt;/span&gt;.&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;While maybe not as beautiful or elegant as the script Woolrich loves, thinks cursive will live on in the form of sloppy(ier) writing.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;So really, my elementary school self was just ahead of the curve on cursive.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Take that, Mrs. Kline.&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='This Dad Doesn&#39;t Care If Cursive Kicks It'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-09-24T02:52:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-09-24T14:42:38.829-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="age"/><category scheme="" term="aging"/><category scheme="" term="Crooked Little Lies"/><category scheme="" term="growing up"/><category scheme="" term="kids"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><title type='text'>Putting Away Childish Things</title><content type='html'>&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;&amp;nbsp;“Annie put stuff away, too, the way kids do – her dolls and the squishy blue doggie her mom had made for her out of an old towel when she was a baby.”&lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;That is a line from Crooked Little Lies, a Kindle First book by Barbara Taylor Sissel that I&#39;m reading. The line seems innocuous and obvious. &amp;nbsp;Of course kids grow up. You can&#39;t help but know that. Its pretty much the one thing you hear repeatedly as a new parent.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&quot;Take pictures, it goes quick. They grow up so quickly. Getting big, isn&#39;t he/she. Appreciate them while they are young.&quot; And one of my favorite that we tell sleep deprived, addled and barely functioning new parents: &quot;you&#39;ll miss this time when its gone.&quot;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;WAIT, say WHAT?&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I looked up from the book. Damned if they haven’t grown.&amp;nbsp; WAIT; WHAT?&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Sure enough: What were once just little baby carrots were now full grown carrots.&amp;nbsp; Ok, so that might be a bit hyperbolic.&amp;nbsp; They clearly aren’t full grown. But when did this happen?&amp;nbsp; When?&amp;nbsp; I demand to know WHEN!&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;table cellpadding=&quot;0&quot; cellspacing=&quot;0&quot; class=&quot;tr-caption-container&quot; style=&quot;float: right; text-align: right;&quot;&gt;&lt;tbody&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; imageanchor=&quot;1&quot; style=&quot;clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;&quot;&gt;&lt;img alt=&quot;Not becoming irrelevant: A chess game&quot; border=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;400&quot; src=&quot;; title=&quot;&quot; width=&quot;300&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td class=&quot;tr-caption&quot; style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;Maybe that is me in the middle; or on the right.&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;/tbody&gt;&lt;/table&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I’ve always tried being a cool cucumber about this whole aging thing. When my wife would say “we are getting old” or “they are growing up,” my stock response is: “it sure beats the alternative.”&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I guess I first realized we were in fact getting old&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;&lt;span style=&quot;font-family: &amp;quot;Verdana&amp;quot;,&amp;quot;sans-serif&amp;quot;; font-size: 10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size: 12.0pt;&quot;&gt;here&lt;/span&gt;&lt;/a&gt;. But now we are getting serious.&amp;nbsp; My kids are growing up. I look at them and wonder how they got so big. They don&#39;t even look like kids anymore. At this point they sometimes look like young adults. And I know some day, maybe not for years, but maybe tomorrow, Sadie will put away her dolls and we will never play baby again.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Just like Annie.&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;And even though my kids tell me they never, ever, under any circumstances, want to live on their own, I think: how long till they put me away?&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;It is sad. And I know: I should have seen this coming. It’s a fact of life.&amp;nbsp; And as I said, its not like parents aren’t given adequate notice. We do nothing but remind them/us.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;   &lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Still. It sneaks up on you.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And like so many life lessons, its something words can&#39;t teach you - you only learn it by doing it.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&amp;lt;center&amp;gt;&lt;br /&gt;&amp;lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&amp;gt;&amp;lt;img alt=&quot;BeautifulThings&quot; src=&quot;;/&amp;gt;&amp;lt;/a&amp;gt;&amp;lt;/center&amp;gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='2 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Putting Away Childish Things'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>2</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-09-04T16:44:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-09-04T16:44:00.075-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="Friday Five"/><title type='text'>Friday Five For Sept. 4</title><content type='html'>A collection of five places I wasted my time online at this week and you might find interesting as well. Seriously, if you only read these five stories, you&#39;ll be alright:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;The &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;best courses&lt;/a&gt; to take at college for critical thinking.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Stop complaining about how awful the world is/has become:&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Seven reasons&lt;/a&gt; the world seems worse than it really is (Good news, its actually pretty awesome). &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;And check out my page on why the good old days weren&#39;t always good.&lt;/a&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Naps &lt;/a&gt;may be awesome for your health (duh).&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;RELATED: Too little sleep might make you &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;more likely to get a cold&lt;/a&gt; (go to sleep already).&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Should we tell our kids &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;they are special&lt;/a&gt;? &amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Maybe not&lt;/a&gt;.</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Friday Five For Sept. 4'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-09-03T04:34:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-09-03T10:14:34.019-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="funny"/><category scheme="" term="games"/><category scheme="" term="sarcasm"/><category scheme="" term="Simon Says"/><title type='text'>Have You Ever Noticed: Simon Says Edition</title><content type='html'>&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;My kids were playing &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Simon Says&lt;/a&gt; the other day and I have to say I’m outraged.&amp;nbsp; Have you ever seen kids play this game? Have &lt;i&gt;your kids&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;ever played?&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;In a world where we are uber concerned about &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;critical thinking skills&lt;/a&gt;and are banning dodge ball out of safety concerns, I’m pretty sure we should make banning Simon Says a priority.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Because I’m fairly sure it’s a foreign plot to take over the country.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;If you visit any comment board about anything remotely political, you’ll see some dolt cleverly refer to sheeple.&amp;nbsp; &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Sheeple: People who are sheep&lt;/a&gt;.&amp;nbsp; See.&amp;nbsp; It’s funny, because it is original.&amp;nbsp; Or, it at least it was original, if you first used it in like 1850.&amp;nbsp; Anyway…&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;What more is Simon Says than an exercise in making children into sheep?&amp;nbsp; I mean, come on.&amp;nbsp; Red-Light/Green-Light at least has the fact that its teaching rudimentary driving skills going for it.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Simon Says is essentially a sheeple generator.&amp;nbsp; It is a game composed entirely of unquestioningly following authority.&amp;nbsp; Just do as we say.&amp;nbsp; It doesn’t matter how tricky or confusing or nonsensical the command, follow or you lose.&amp;nbsp; Oh, and if we throw in a surprise trick, or ask the impossible of you, you lose as well.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Replace Simon with Authority and you get something like this:&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Authority says rub your head.&amp;nbsp; Run in circles. &amp;nbsp;Oh wait. You didn’t get the proper permission to run in circles.&amp;nbsp; So sorry, you lose.&amp;nbsp; You must be some kind of right-wing militia nut.&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;The rest of you, Authority says sing as loud as you can.&amp;nbsp; Stop stop stop.&amp;nbsp; That racket was getting on my nerves.&amp;nbsp; Wait.&amp;nbsp; Authority says stop.&amp;nbsp; If you who stopped on that first command - off to the gulags with you.&amp;nbsp; Good job those who remain.&amp;nbsp; You are awesome&amp;nbsp;sheep, er, people.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Think about it.&amp;nbsp; The KGB could scarcely come up with a better way to brainwash people into towing the party line. &amp;nbsp;Hours of eyelid-pinned-open watching of propaganda films can&#39;t touch a childhood game specially formulated to create a supplicating citizenship. &amp;nbsp;Come to think of it, does any one know where this game originated? &amp;nbsp;Because this stinks of a game some secret society infiltrating society with this game to weed out the rebellious element. &amp;nbsp;Donald Trump is worried about criminals crossing the border, but we suffer from an even scarier threat: The Freemasons might be brainwashing our kids!&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Don&#39;t think it matters? Let me ask you this: You think Luke Skywalker was good at Simon Says? &amp;nbsp;If so, you must be a sheeple yourself. &amp;nbsp;There is no way Skywalker, with his head in the clouds and never on what he was doing, was good at Simon Says. You know who was really awesome at Simon Says?&amp;nbsp; Storm troopers. That is right. Clones genetically designed to be good and faithful servants. People who would follow orders without questioning.&amp;nbsp; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;i&gt;They&lt;/i&gt; would would be awesome at Simon Says.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Have You Ever Noticed: Simon Says Edition'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-08-20T14:26:00.006-04:00</published><updated>2015-08-20T14:26:52.167-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="vacation"/><title type='text'>Things I Learned On Vacation</title><content type='html'>&lt;table align=&quot;center&quot; cellpadding=&quot;0&quot; cellspacing=&quot;0&quot; class=&quot;tr-caption-container&quot; style=&quot;margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto; text-align: left;&quot;&gt;&lt;tbody&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; imageanchor=&quot;1&quot; style=&quot;clear: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;&quot;&gt;&lt;img alt=&quot;WATER! They have WATER!&quot; border=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;144&quot; src=&quot;; title=&quot;&quot; width=&quot;640&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td class=&quot;tr-caption&quot; style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;Plenty of deep thoughts - and water - flowing here.&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;/tbody&gt;&lt;/table&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;We recently took a two-week family vacation. In part, that explains why I haven’t posted in a while.&amp;nbsp; I was also busy trying to parent through some rough seas and minor medical things that go along with parenting and will probably be the focus of future posts. And I was being lazy; don&#39;t forget lazy.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Vacations can be great.&amp;nbsp; They are nice for down time.&amp;nbsp; The mindlessness it can sometimes entail can paradoxically allow for really deep consideration of things.&amp;nbsp; But as my wife said, vacationing with kids is mostly doing exactly what you do at home, but instead you do it closer to the beach.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Too true.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Still, a couple things struck me.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;The first was that the &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;10-toy plan&lt;/a&gt; to parenting on a dime is absolutely feasible.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Vacation is a great time to see how your kids react outside of their natural environment.&amp;nbsp; Its also a time where you leave most of your stuff at home. And by “your,” I mean the kids. Frankly, the kids have a lot more stuff than me these days. And while most of it is way cooler than the stuff I have, who wants to pack it all?&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Anyway, we pared down from the usual 10,342 toys down to about a dozen or two.&amp;nbsp; And you know what? They were content.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;All that stuff; it isn’t necessary. That mess all those toys create: unnecessary.&amp;nbsp; Ten or fifteen toys, maybe twenty total, rotated in and out of a play area are totally enough.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;That isn’t to say I’m instituting that program. Even having witnessed how well it worked, it still makes me nervous to employ as a strategy. I won’t lie and say I didn’t think about it when we got home. A few toys scattered about rather than 100s. All those miscellaneous toy pieces gone; the room cleaned up in seconds rather than minutes.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;How nice would it be?&amp;nbsp; &lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;A second thing got to me as well.&amp;nbsp; We were in the pool one day and Sadie saw a little baby waddle by in its awkward, first-steps way.&amp;nbsp; Sadie says to me:&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;“Daddy, look, a little baby.”&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;This is hardly surprising.&amp;nbsp; Sadie has an empathy and fascination for babies that is both impressive and absolutely genetic. It almost has to be seen to be believed. But it was what she said next that really got me.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;“She is walking.&amp;nbsp; I’m so proud of her.”&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Sadie, who had never once met this kid, was proud of her for walking.&lt;o:p&gt;&lt;/o:p&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;And I was immensely proud of Sadie.&amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;I&#39;m not one for taking accolades. Most of this blog is about my errors and doubts and how genetics plays a big role in how your kid ends up. But this one struck a chord. We must be doing &lt;i&gt;something&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;correct for her to recognize the challenge walking posed to that baby and comment on it. Right? So I was a little proud of the job my wife and I are doing.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;But pride always comes before the fall.&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;You know what else I learned on vacation? If you ignore your water bill long enough, they will send you a shut off notice. &amp;nbsp;And if that notice comes the day before you leave for vacation, they will shut off your water right after you get home. &amp;nbsp;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;&lt;div class=&quot;Story&quot;&gt;Yep. I did that. Not so proud.&lt;/div&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Things I Learned On Vacation'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-07-23T10:24:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-07-23T10:24:00.251-04:00</updated><title type='text'>Parenting Is Full Of Contradictions</title><content type='html'>I wrote last week about how the advice to&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt; &quot;follow your intuition&quot;&lt;/a&gt; is really bad advice. At least for a parent like me. &amp;nbsp;Pretty much every parenting decision requires me to do exactly the opposite of my intuition. &amp;nbsp;That got me thinking of how many contradictions are inherent in parenting. &amp;nbsp;Things we either wouldn&#39;t do for anyone else that we do for our kids, or things we want for our kids, but would &lt;b&gt;never&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;want our kids to do.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;For instance, which would you prefer your child grow into as an adult:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;A) A nice, anonymous, completely average rule-following adult.&lt;br /&gt;B) A live-out-loud, noticed at first sight, rule breaking adult who overcomes barriers and creates something new and spectacular.&lt;/blockquote&gt;I&#39;m guessing most parents would choose outcome B every time. &amp;nbsp;But not much sound worse than trying to &lt;i&gt;parent&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;child B. &amp;nbsp;Pretty much no parent would choose a rule breaking, barrier busting child who ignores their parents&#39; every command over a more docile one who listens and eats his vegetables instead of throwing them.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;When my daughter can&#39;t - won&#39;t - do something simple for herself like type a four-number password into her Kindle Fire, I want to scream at her that she needs to do it herself... but I don&#39;t. &amp;nbsp;I try to keep in mind that might actually be hard for her and to walk her through it. &lt;i&gt;&amp;nbsp;Again.&lt;/i&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;When its 80 degrees out and my kids tell me they are freezing, I want to tell them they are full of it and to get real. &amp;nbsp;Instead, I try really, really hard to accept that - despite the 90 degree temps - they might really be cold.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Same for when my son told me a couple days ago that he needs footie pajamas for bed or he will be cold. On a day when it hit 90 with a forecasted low of 72. &amp;nbsp;He got socks.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I really want to scream when I come upon my kids in the bathroom instead of napping and find sink running over with water. I just want timeouts raining down from heaven like Zeus&#39; lighting. But then they explain that they got poop on their hand while wiping their butts. And then they tried to clean it with toilet paper - duh - but couldn&#39;t and thus needed water. &amp;nbsp;So they washed their toilet paper filled hands in the sink. See? It all makes sense. How can you scold them for such independence? And I guess it IS better than finding out they washed their hands in the toilet.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Parenting Is Full Of Contradictions'/><author><name>Triplethedad</name><uri></uri><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='16' height='16' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-07-16T12:40:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-07-16T12:40:00.358-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="danger"/><category scheme="" term="Inside Out"/><category scheme="" term="intuition"/><category scheme="" term="logic"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><category scheme="" term="reason"/><category scheme="" term="vaccines"/><title type='text'>Parenting: Against All Odds And Intuitions</title><content type='html'>When you read as many Mommy and Daddy blogs as I do, heck, if you are any kind of parent at all, you will inevitably come across some version of advice that goes like this: trust your intuition.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Like most Moms and Dads, I feel like I&#39;m pretty good parent. &amp;nbsp;Lord knows I&#39;ve set a low enough bar that I really, &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;would&lt;/a&gt;, &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;could&lt;/a&gt;, &lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;should &lt;/a&gt;be. It sure would be easier if there were Inside Outesque little people running around inside me ensuring I do it right.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Maybe&amp;nbsp;&lt;a href=&quot;; target=&quot;_blank&quot;&gt;I&#39;m not&lt;/a&gt;. &amp;nbsp;But as I said,&amp;nbsp;I like believe I am, even sans the little people&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But you know who else thinks they are doing it right? &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;These people&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;who object to vaccines. These people who &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;object to getting medical care &lt;/a&gt;for their kids. The people &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;here&lt;/a&gt;.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I&#39;m not saying these people are doing it wrong. Though the &lt;a href=&quot;;amp;src=IE-SearchBox&amp;amp;FORM=IE8SRC&quot;&gt;people here&lt;/a&gt;&amp;nbsp;probably are. As near as I can tell, 99% percent of all deaths result from people following intuition.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Screw intuition.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;div&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/div&gt;I&#39;m just not sure follow your intuition&quot; advice amounts to anything more than a cop out. I&#39;ve written before about the worst advice &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;we give kids&lt;/a&gt;, and the worst advice we give those who are &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;college bound&lt;/a&gt;. &quot;Follow your intuition&quot; really amounts to &quot;I don&#39;t know, don&#39;t ask me.&quot; You might has well tell someone who is depressed to simply get over it for all the good it offers.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Parenting is both easier and harder than we make it. Easier in that kids will largely live to grow into functional adults with or without much input from us; harder in that each kid is wired differently, requiring different techniques to deal with specific behaviors and presenting unique challenges.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;And beside, most of &lt;b&gt;my&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;intuitions are completely wrong. All the time. When my kid falls, the first thing I want to do is baby them. But I can tell you, rushing over to a child who has fallen does nothing but incite crying. When my kid gives me his sad face my intuition is to erase it by giving him what he wants. But he pulls that face out when I go to work. If I gave in every time he pulled that look out he would be playing in the street. With guns.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;When you bring your kids in for their vaccines and squelch away from the crying and pain the shots entail - that is intuition telling you to stop hurting your kid. But that isn&#39;t the right path. You know in your head that intuition is wrong. The intuition against pain has to be overcome by the knowledge that the pain comes with great rewards.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Screw intuition.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Am I alone in this? I sure hope not. Leave a comment about a time when your intuition about your kids was all wrong.</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Parenting: Against All Odds And Intuitions'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-07-09T04:00:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-07-09T04:00:01.250-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="challenges"/><category scheme="" term="guns"/><category scheme="" term="No gun challenge"/><category scheme="" term="safety"/><category scheme="" term="society"/><title type='text'>Kids And Guns: The &#39;No Gun&#39; Challenge</title><content type='html'>I&#39;ve had this post hanging around for a while. Its a touchy subject and it was, as I&#39;ll describe below, harder to undertake than I imagined. Anyway, with the recent events in Charleston I thought it might well be time to go on this journey. So here we are: a post about kids and guns.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;You see, it all started when we went on a play date with friends of ours. &amp;nbsp;The family we were visiting has a new baby girl we will call Babette. &amp;nbsp;They also have an almost 4-year-old boy, who has since turned 4, who we can call Titan.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I got to talking with the Dad, and he mentioned how difficult it was to keep Titan from encountering guns in one form or another. &amp;nbsp;The conversation switched to a recent kids party in which the boys played with toy guns, as boys will do, by &quot;shooting&quot; each other. Titan didn&#39;t really know what to do with that and kind of floundered in the game. &amp;nbsp;Having never been exposed to that kind of play, Titan was like a giraffe in space. &amp;nbsp;Seeing this confusion, they broke down and gave Titan a water gun they were saving for him. &amp;nbsp;Despite the water gun gift, they were still set on shielding Titan from too much exposure going forward.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But this whole incident got me thinking: How hard would it be to not expose a 4-year-old to guns?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;So I set off to make it a challenge, because of course I did. I&#39;m almost always up for a challenge. It reaches something primal in me. Challenging my ability or willingness to do something will almost always ensure that I do, in fact, do it.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But could I keep my threesome from encountering guns or gun violence or using guns for a week?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;It turns out, I can&#39;t.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Partly because what counts as &quot;shooting&quot; is pretty hard to define. Or at least more work that I was willing to put into this project. I know as you read that last sentence you are probably questioning my work ethic. But trust me, its surprisingly hard. Is a cannon on a pirate ship OK? How about magic from a wand? Water about a water cannon used to hit a person? Guns actually appear - though they aren&#39;t used - in the original Wizard of Oz as the quartet heads off through the haunted forest.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;It was also partly because my kids only really watch TV or use tablets while I&#39;m making dinner and its just too hard to sit and watch what each of them is watching while also making any kind of meal.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Still, I&#39;m fairly confident they don&#39;t get too much exposure. One of my boys is currently focused entirely on My Little Pony and another is completely hooked on music and videos. My girl has, somehow, managed to find parenting Vlogs and spends all her time watching adults tote kids to the pool and grocery store. You would think, &lt;b&gt;since this is literally her life,&lt;/b&gt; that it might be boring to her. You&#39;d be wrong.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Anyway, not a lot of shooting going on in My Little Pony, though they do shoot &quot;rays&quot; of magic from their horns pretty frequently. Would that count?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Thankfully, it appears that &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;playing with toy guns is OK&lt;/a&gt;; its the real thing we need to worry about. And its a very real worry.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Speaking of parental worries, how is this for &quot;all your parenting is for nothing&quot; category:&lt;br /&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;Marjorie Sanfilippo, a psychologist at Eckerd College in Florida, has conducted  a series of terrifying experiments illustrating that boys and girls simply don’t  listen when you warn them about guns. In her first &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;study&lt;/a&gt;, published in 1996,  she let pairs of 4- to 6-year-old children play in a room with various toys  including real and toy guns. Then she and a local police officer spent 30  minutes educating one of the children in each pair about the dangers of  guns—among other things, that they are never to be touched without a parent’s  permission and that kids should always find an adult if they come across one. &lt;/blockquote&gt;&lt;blockquote class=&quot;tr_bq&quot;&gt;A  week later, she put the pair of children back together in the same room again to  play. “What we found is that the children who had the lessons played with the  guns just as much as the children who didn’t—and they didn’t leave the area to  get an adult, and they didn’t stop the friend from playing with it. &lt;b&gt;It was as if  they’d gotten no lessons whatsoever,”&amp;nbsp;&lt;/b&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;A follow up study involved a full week of firearms education with similar results. Sanfilippo concludes:&amp;nbsp;&lt;i&gt;“There’s no amount of teaching that can overcome that natural curiosity about  guns.&quot;&lt;/i&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;i style=&quot;font-weight: bold;&quot;&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;/i&gt;Well, that is&amp;nbsp;encouraging. Think about&amp;nbsp;&lt;b&gt;that&lt;/b&gt;&amp;nbsp;next time you blame parenting for a child&#39;s behavior or decide to credit your own parenting for how well your child acts in a given situation. Some kids climb out of their cribs before they turn one, some don&#39;t climb out until they are almost four. &amp;nbsp;We can put up rules, gates and barriers, but kids are going to do what their genes tell them.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;But do those facts mean we should steer kids away from toy guns? Surprisingly, perhaps not. While not all aggression and violence is normal, studies show that kids who have stuffed animals display aggressive actions often behave &lt;i&gt;less&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;aggressively in class. There is, of course, all kinds of causation-correlation noise in the data, but the thinking is that the pretend play may actually help them navigate violent impulses.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Kids And Guns: The &#39;No Gun&#39; Challenge'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry><entry><id>,</id><published>2015-07-02T10:40:00.000-04:00</published><updated>2015-07-02T12:43:24.498-04:00</updated><category scheme="" term="dad"/><category scheme="" term="Daddying"/><category scheme="" term="kizmit"/><category scheme="" term="parenting"/><category scheme="" term="pregnancy"/><category scheme="" term="universe"/><category scheme="" term="WAHD"/><category scheme="" term="work"/><category scheme="" term="work it out"/><category scheme="" term="working at home"/><title type='text'>Going Back To An Office</title><content type='html'>&lt;table cellpadding=&quot;0&quot; cellspacing=&quot;0&quot; class=&quot;tr-caption-container&quot; style=&quot;float: right; margin-left: 1em; text-align: right;&quot;&gt;&lt;tbody&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;; imageanchor=&quot;1&quot; style=&quot;clear: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;&quot;&gt;&lt;img alt=&quot;Ignore all the toys. Boy are there a lot of toys.&quot; border=&quot;0&quot; height=&quot;240&quot; src=&quot;; title=&quot;&quot; width=&quot;320&quot; /&gt;&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;tr&gt;&lt;td class=&quot;tr-caption&quot; style=&quot;text-align: center;&quot;&gt;This is where I work.&lt;/td&gt;&lt;/tr&gt;&lt;/tbody&gt;&lt;/table&gt;For more than four years I&#39;ve had it pretty good; great even. &amp;nbsp;It was almost five years ago when my company decided we should all be home based employees.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;We already worked from home two days a week, so it wasn&#39;t a titanic-hitting-an-iceberg change. &amp;nbsp;Still, I was anxious about the change. &amp;nbsp;Would I become a hermit? &amp;nbsp;How would I handle working at home everyday? &amp;nbsp;Would I miss the social interaction. &amp;nbsp;Would I miss a 5 mile commute that at times took 45 minutes. &amp;nbsp;Okay, so I could safely say I wouldn&#39;t miss that last part.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Still, it was a big change.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Little did I know, bigger changes were on the horizon. &amp;nbsp;Just a few months later I would change in my soon-to-be impossibly small car for an pickup truck. Despite wanting a pickup truck, the one I settled on seemed at the time impracticably oversized. We were firmly entrenched in fertility issues. There was a growing chance we weren&#39;t having kids at all. &amp;nbsp;And even when - if? - we finally had a child, why would I need an entire second row of seats?&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Just months &lt;i&gt;after&lt;/i&gt;&amp;nbsp;that purchase, in bam-bam style, we learned about our pregnancy and impending task of raising triplets. &amp;nbsp;And suddenly, the dimensions of seats relative to three car seats became of paramount importance.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Being home helped when my wife went on bed rest for 3 weeks and it certainly played a role in me visiting her every day of the 9 weeks she spent on bed rest in the hospital. And so, a year after becoming a home-based employee and nine weeks of hospital bed rest I became the father to the most awesome triplets you could possibly imagine.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&amp;nbsp;I&#39;ve been working from home for the entirety of my kids&#39; lives. The arrangement made life so much easier. &amp;nbsp;No need to worry about whether the nanny has a vehicle, or leaving a stranger at home with the kids, or having to worry about deadlines to pick the kids up and drop them off. It was absolutely awesome working at home for the first four years of their lives.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;I&#39;m not one of those people who will tell you things happen for a reason. But if I was &lt;b&gt;ever &lt;/b&gt;to believe in something like that, this would be the case. So many of life&#39;s rapid-filled creeks converged into one smooth river. Looking back, it almost seems as if the universe spent four years setting us up in a perfect situation for triplets. Things dovetailed very nicely. It was almost kizmet. It was certainly a great run.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Next Thursday that run ends.&amp;nbsp;I&#39;ll give my kids a kiss goodbye and head out the door, for the first time ever.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Because a couple months ago, we were informed of another huge life change: we were going back to a part-time office setting starting next week.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Now, hopefully everything will fall into place once again. I&#39;ve lived a pretty blessed life, and I can&#39;t help wonder sometimes if I&#39;ve reached Peak Karma and things are about to just fall apart. But then my mind takes over - most of the time - and I realize that a lot of the reason things have worked out isn&#39;t out of some universal kindness, but because we have made it work.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;Having triplets could have made us miserable. &amp;nbsp;Rarely leaving the house could have made me miserable. Any number of things could make us miserable. But we choose not to let it.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;&lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Sometimes you just have to let the happy out&lt;/a&gt;, roll with the punches&amp;nbsp;and make the best of a situation.&lt;br /&gt;&lt;br /&gt;BONUS: I&#39;d be remiss if I didn&#39;t direct you to &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;Gretchen Rubin&#39;s site&lt;/a&gt;. She has a LOT to say about the science of happiness and how to achieve it. &amp;nbsp;I&#39;ve been a longtime follower of her blog about happiness and am in the middle of reading her book &lt;a href=&quot;;&gt;The Happiness Project&lt;/a&gt;.&amp;nbsp;She also wrote the most apropos quote I&#39;ve ever read about parenting: &quot;The days are long and the years are short.&quot;</content><link rel='replies' type='application/atom+xml' href='' title='Post Comments'/><link rel='replies' type='text/html' href='' title='0 Comments'/><link rel='edit' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='self' type='application/atom+xml' href=''/><link rel='alternate' type='text/html' href='' title='Going Back To An Office'/><author><name>@triplethedad</name><email></email><gd:image rel='' width='32' height='24' src=''/></author><media:thumbnail xmlns:media="" url="" height="72" width="72"/><thr:total>0</thr:total></entry></feed>