Friday, September 30, 2011

Day 1449 - Picture Friday

 "Daddy!  I cleaned the downstair's bathroom!"

 "Daddy!  I cleaned the upstair's bathroom!"

 Andrew soon realizes he would be better off blowing up the balloon with his butt.

Emma is not so thrilled with Disney's Princess fingertip dresses.

 Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Day 1448 - Play Ball!

When I picked up the kids at school, I had an innocent conversation about Andrew with one of his teachers.  But this talk slowly merged into awkwardville with me at the wheel.

First, the back story.  It all started several weeks ago when Andrew began to get this nasty diaper rash right below his belly.  We slathered it with Aquaphor and baby powder, but it wasn't getting better.  It was only when we started to use Desitin that the rash began to heal.  During this entire rashy time, Andrew would always stick his hands down his pants to scratch whatever he could scratch at.

So cut back to the present.  As I was gathering the kids' lunch bags, one of Andrew's teachers told me that he wet his pants during nap so they put all of his wet clothes in a garbage bag for me to bring home (i.e. burn).  The teacher mentioned in passing that Andrew has a bad diaper rash.  And so begins the cue for Mr. Awkward Dad to appear.

"Oh yah," I agreed.  "We've been putting on a lot of diaper cream lately, and I think it's getting better."

"And just so you know, Andrew has been sticking his hands in his pants a lot recently," continued the teacher.

"I'm sure it's very itchy down there," I replied.

"Well, I think it's more than just itching.  He is just going through a phase where he's playing with himself," said the teacher matter-of-factly.

Sadly, if there is one thing that I am more awkward at than dancing, talking to the opposite sex, public bathrooms, and drinking hot, foamy lattes it is talking about anything related to sex.  This teacher just opened up the Pandora Box of geeky gawkiness.

"Oh (uncomfortable laugh)!  I'm sure that rash is just bothering him," I said averting my eyes.

"Don't worry about it," comforted the teacher.  "It's nothing to be embarrassed about."

"No no no (sweat)!  I know it's nothing to be embarrassed about!  I'll just put more ointment on it tonight.  I mean his rash, not his pe...pee-pee."  Wow.  How did I ever get married?

"I just wanted to let you know, that's all."  This teacher really had enough of me.

"Well, thanks for the info.  I'm sure it's just the rash!  He doesn't do this at home!"  I called out to her.

I have no idea why I was trying to deny Andrew's scratching/wanking fascination because I know this is a very natural phase of any growing toddler.  I also know that it's better to deal with this head on otherwise you'll end up having Andrew turn out like me -- such a scary thought that Lisa just hit me.

But as a parent, I guess as much as you want to know everything about your child, there are still certain things that you don't enjoy knowing.  Andrew is only four so I can only imagine the awkwardness I will bring into the house during his teenage years.  For the first few years of life, your kid is just an innocent baby full of potential.  And as they slowly grow, your view of them changes; you see that they are human.  Or for me, I understand that Andrew likes his penis.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Day 1446 - Conversations with Andrew

Andrew was overactive tonight.  After we kissed him good night and left the bedroom, Andrew began to run, jump, and construct several Ikea bookshelves while revealing his stash of Gerber Red Bull Jr cans.

I am trying very hard not to lose my patience and temper with the kids so I have relied a lot more on diversion and reverse-psychology.  Tonight, I decided to try diversion.

"Andrew, you won't be able to go to sleep if you don't calm down.  Do you want to try and play a game?" I asked.

Andrew's eyes lit up.  "Game!  Okay!  I like games!" 

"First, you have to lie down in bed," I said.

After gulping down the last bit from his Red Bull can, Andrew jumped into bed.

"Great!"  Now here comes the double combo of diversion and reverse-psychology.  "Here's how you play the game.  You lie down in bed, and I'll lie down on the sofa.  The first person to say anything loses the game.  Do you understand?"

"I'm going to be the winner!" Andrew exclaimed.

"Here we go.  One...two...three..."  And then there was quiet in the room.  I peeked up from the sofa, and I saw both Emma and Andrew lying still in bed.  All I could think was, "I am such an amazing parent!"

Five seconds past.

Ten seconds past.

Fifteen seconds past.

Holy s#!t!  This thing is really going to work. 

And then at the twenty second mark,  Andrew pops up from bed and screams, "POO-POO!  I lose!  HAHAHA!"

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Day 1444 - U-rine Big Trouble!

Tonight, I was in charge of getting Andrew ready for bed.  Although he tends to be a little more obedient, he is a lot more squirmy and active.  Trying to brush his teeth is like trying to thread a needle except the needle is being held by a meth addict about to OD. 

After Andrew brushed his teeth, it was time to go to the potty.  Whether or not he has to pee, we make him stand at the toilet for twenty seconds because those seconds usually determine if there will be a middle-of-the-night bed change. 

Andrew pulled down his pants, but he forgot to lift up the toilet lid.  So as I bent over to lift up the lid, a warm stream of fresh Andrew pee went all over my arms and hands.  My reaction to this is best described by Emma who asked Lisa, "Why is Daddy screaming?"

Everyone was in the bathroom staring at me.  Andrew continued to pee in the toilet.  Emma was at the sink brushing her teeth.  And Lisa was just laughing at me.  I pushed Emma aside and began to lather up my hands and arms with soap.  Emma asked me why I was washing my hands, and I just muttered to myself over and over again, "Because I have pee all over it.  Because I have pee all over it."

I explained to Andrew that I wasn't mad at him; I was just disgusted by him.  Andrew believed he was 100% innocent with this pee incident.  Why, you ask?  Because the way he saw it, he was wondering why I stuck my arm in the toilet when he was peeing.  Can't say he's wrong about that, eh?

What struck me weird about my urine soaked arm is how I reacted to it.  Over the course of four years, I have dealt with pee and poop in a variety of manners and forms.  You would think that I would be numb and emotionless over any substance that oozes out of the kids' nether regions, but I guess this experience shows that I am full of emotion and girl-like screams.

More significantly, I think the way Andrew marked his territory on my forearm made me realize that I reacted to Andrew as a kid and not a baby.  There's something oh-so cute about a helpless baby spraying urine and poop all over your body.  You accept the fact that the baby doesn't know any better, so you clean up and move on.

But when a four year old sprays his human fire hose on your arm, you react to it differently.  Even though it was an accident, you treat the older child as if he made a mistake and/or he needs to be more careful.  There's no Kodak moment when a young child defecates on you.

So perhaps I should look at Andrew's urinepalooza as a bittersweet episode; definitely more bitter since it's pee we're talking about.  He's growing and needs to be held somewhat accountable for his toilet errors.  And as for myself, after taking a nice long shower, I have got to say that I should probably use shampoo and conditioner more often on my arms.  I've never seen my arm hairs with so much body and sheen!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Day 1443 - Balloon Mania

We bought the kids balloons for their birthday.  I don't know why I even bother buying latex balloons anymore because the only ones that last are the Mylar balloons.  What is it that is so magical about the long-lasting Mylar balloons?  Some say it's the material, but I say it must be the magical unicorn breath that they use to inflate the balloons.  Or at least that what Emma says.

If I knew how much the kids were going to enjoy their balloon, I would've just given them a $3.99 balloon for their birthday.  It really is refreshing and nice to see young kids find enjoyment with simple things like balloons, boxes, and iPads.

For almost ten straight minutes, Andrew and Emma were chasing each other around the house with their balloons.  We love seeing the kids laughing, smiling, and running around the house for the sole reason that they will fall asleep faster at bedtime.  And if not that, strapping them to our treadmill for another 20 minutes usually does the trick.  Just make sure you hydrate them afterwards...but not too much or else they'll piss their beds.

Here's a video of the kids chasing each other with their balloons:

Friday, September 23, 2011

Day 1442 - Picture Friday

"I can't believe Disney modeled a princess doll after me!!!"

 "You paid retail for this?  You could've got this on Amazon for $10 less plus no tax!"

If you look into Andrew's eyes closely, you can see his sugar gauge pointing towards 110% capacity.

 Emma apologizes to the ladybug cupcake for what she is soon going to do it.

Happy 4th Birthday!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Day 1441 - Puppet Master

For the kids' birthday, we bought them some hand puppets based on the picture book The Very Hungry Caterpillar.  Andrew got the caterpillar, Emma got the butterfly, and I got the pupa when the caterpillar is digesting itself inside-out.

I strung an old bed sheet between two chairs and told the kids to put on a puppet show.  I remember as a kid, I used to put on puppet shows for my sister with an old bed sheet.  Later in life, I just wanted to strangle my sister with the sheet.  But for now, Emma and Andrew were going to cooperate nicely and recreate The Very Hungry Caterpillar story.

Oh wait.  Did I say cooperate?  Did I say nicely? What was I thinking?  What was suppose to be a simple puppet show became an example of a totalitarian dictatorship!  Emma tried to take charge of the puppet show, but when Andrew ignored her, you witnessed the meltdown of a burgeoning Emma empire.

Here's the video:

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Day 1440 - Happy 4th Birthday

Today, the kids turn four years old.  I can hardly believe how fast time flies.  It seemed like it was only yesterday when I was changing Andrew's diapers.  Oh wait.  That was yesterday.  Never mind.

We already had a birthday party for the kids in Santa Clara and Sacramento.  So today will be birthday celebration number three, and on Saturday, we are having a small party with friends.  We did not decide to invite the entire preschool for a party because when we asked Emma and Andrew who they play with at school, they said each other.  But we did tell their preschool that we would bring cupcakes for snack to celebrate Andrew's and Emma's birthday.

I thought cupcakes would be an easy enough snack, but I did not realize how much time it took to make four dozen cupcakes.  And silly Lisa asked the kids what kind of cupcakes they wanted, so we had to make monkey and ladybug cupcakes.  I suggested to the kids that we could decorate the cupcakes with lady monkeys, but their answer to that was kicking my shins.

To get some suggestions on how to make monkey and ladybug cupcakes, I did a quick Google image search; an innocent typo when I typed "lady cakes" made for an amusing diversion.  There were a wide variety of images to choose from, and none of them seemed too difficult.  So after several hours of baking and frosting, here is a picture of the finished product:

When we brought the cupcakes to school, all of the teachers thought they were very cute and complemented Lisa on the decoration.  But Lisa had to correct the teachers and tell them that her metrosexual husband, in fact, decorated all of the cupcakes.  Suddenly, all of the teachers looked at me in a different way.  Probably because I was wearing a dress (What?  It was hot!).

After preschool, the kids came home and opened up all of their gifts.  The big hit with Andrew was his Disney Cars wooden road track that is compatible with all of his other wooden train tracks.  And Emma really loved her Mulan and Kanga plush dolls.  And as for Mommy and Daddy, we enjoyed opening all of their birthday cards and spending all of their birthday cash on our utility bills.

I made this photo collage of the kids from birth to their fourth birthday.  It's pretty crazy to think four years has past.  I really don't remember anything too specific from birth until their first birthday -- probably because of the alcohol.  But after looking at their birthday pictures from the past years, I can hardly believe they are four.

So to all of you new parents out there, it is true.  Your kids grow up really fast.  In just four short years, our little, helpless babies have grown up to become talkative, demanding, and sarcastic children.  In just four short years, I have not completed an entire book or video game.  In just four short years, if you assume the average cost of raising a child is $22,000, we have spent $176,000.  Wow.  Suddenly, these last four years feel really, really long.

Happy birthday, Emma and Andrew!!!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Day 1439 - Who's the Boss?

Lisa attended a mandatory preschool meeting that went over the entire school year.  I was unable to attend because I had a much more pressing issue to deal with at home:  give the kids a bath.

When Lisa came home, she told me that she had a very interesting story to tell me.  I couldn't wait!  I couldn't wait to hear what type of oh-so interesting story she was going to tell me from a mandatory preschool meeting.  Increased tuition?  New potty seats?  Oh boy oh boy!

It turns out the story was pretty interesting.  Lisa was talking to one of the directors at the preschool, and she mentioned to Lisa that they were thinking of separating Andrew and Emma at school.  Too much genius and good looks in one class?  Far from it.  The reason why was because Emma was bossing Andrew around too much!

I'm not too sure where Emma gets the bossiness from, but I'll get back to that in a few minutes.  Lisa is screaming at me to mop the kitchen floor because Andrew spilled some milk.

(10 minutes pass)

Okay.  I'm back.  Like I said, I have no idea where Emma gets her bossiness from.

The director told us that Emma will do certain things with Andrew that concerns them.  If they are walking through a door together, she will push him out of the way, walk through the door first, and say, "I win!"  If they are waiting as a group to see a science project, she will push him out of the way and say, "I get to see it first!"  Lots of pushing and winning.

What's interesting is that this is all behavior that we see at home too.  But at home, Andrew is often the instigator and wants to beat Emma all of the time.  The environment of the preschool must hold Andrew back a little bit because he certainly tries to hold his own at home.

The reason why the preschool decided not to separate the kids is because Andrew is starting to stand-up for himself now.  I think it's a combination of two things:  1)  He is more comfortable at school, and 2) he is more comfortable telling Emma to beat it.

I think it's pretty natural when you have two people together from birth that one of them will be more of a leader and the other more of a follower.  But just as their personalities and interests go back and forth, I think their leadership and following roles will also change.  Much akin to my leadership role in my relationship with Lisa, I tend to find that...oh wait...I'm going to have to cut this entry short because Lisa needs me to use the toe rasp to file off her calluses.  More later!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Day 1437 - Weighty Issue

As with most things in life, the older you get, the heavier you get.  Some exceptions would be raisins, prunes, and anorexic dwarfs.  Our scale at home isn't very accurate, but I think Emma is getting close to 40 pounds and Andrew is probably a few pounds behind her.  Together, they weigh the number of pounds that Jennifer Hudson lost. 

Look at that before and after picture.  Jennifer Hudson basically crapped out Andrew and Emma!  Holla!

I bring this weight factor up because it seems as if it is taking a toll on poor Lisa.  For the past few weeks, her back and knees have been acting up.  I think the last time that happened to her, we were on our honeymoon. 

Lisa is wearing a knee brace to give her a little more support and made a doctor's appointment for this week.  We have also started to take the stroller around more often so we don't have to carry around whiny kids.  Beyond that, there's not too much else for her to do except not carry them as often.

I suppose it is a little sad when your kids get to an age where it becomes difficult to carry them.  Or perhaps it could also be that it is sad when you get to an age where you can't carry them.  For my own safety, I'm going to agree with the former.

Although I'm not in as much physical pain as Lisa, I also feel the creakiness of my aging body, yet supple facial features.  Since I'm right handed, I always carry the kids with my left arm.  So there are occasions when my shoulder and neck are out of whack.  Sadly, I confuse the pain with angina and coronary failure at times of deep desperation for attention.

Although I'm not a doctor, I have a feeling Lisa is just going to have to take it easy.  I doubt it is anything that would require surgery or medicinal pot.  The kids and Lisa have just reached the point where the kids will have to walk more and Lisa will have to carry less.  But the most important thing to take away from this is that I still have the massive strength to carry the kids in my arms.  Take a good look at my guns!  They can carry a huge Jennifer Hudson turd!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Day 1436 - Birthday Celebration Preview

The kids are going to turn four next week, and the anticipation, excitement, and exhaustion is increasing by the day.  I think this is the first year that the kids are truly looking forward to their birthday.  Little do they know when they become Mommy and Daddy's age (especially Mommy's), it's not really anything to be too excited about.  At our age, all we really want is a glass of hemlock juice and a comfy bed.

To demonstrate the kids' excitement, here is a peculiar song and dance they came up with while going out to dinner.  I believe the song is the Ting Tings "Happy Birthday", and the dance is Elizabeth Berkley from Showgirls.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Day 1435 - Picture Friday

 Andrew only eats carrots vertically.

 "Do these shoulder pads frame my face appropriately?"

The innocuous ladybug mask on Andrew's chest suddenly warrants a call to social services.

Crazy Gaga rolled that curler a little too tight.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Day 1434 - Poopageddon!

In the past, Andrew has had constipation problems because he did not want to poop at the preschool potty.  We didn't really blame him for not wanting to use a public toilet, but we explained to him the worst-case scenario would be that he might catch E. coli or perhaps hepatitis A.  Not the end of the world.

Thankfully, it seems as if this phase has passed (pun intended) and ended (another pun end-tended (pun intended within the parenthesis!) ).  But we have another problem on our hands.  No, not hepatitis A.  Andrew has began to poop his pants again.

Andrew is totally fine peeing in the potty, but he could care less if he drops a corn log in his pants.  I suppose it is more comfortable walking around with a chunky candy bar in your pants versus slogging around with urine pants, but if Andrew was smart like his Daddy he would kill two birds with one stone by peeing and pooping at the same time.  A-ha!

I believe there was one day when he pooped in his pants four times.  Pooping in your pants is worse enough, but four times?  I don't even think an Oompa-Loompa had seen as many Hershey squirts as I did during that day.  

Despite my increasing frustration and decreasing laundry detergent, I am trying to use positive reinforcement to encourage Andrew to use the potty.  There have been times when my annoyance has shown through (probably when I was scrubbing soiled underwear in the sink), but I hope I have not used guilt or Pepto-Bismol to fix the problem (maybe once on the Pepto...).

My solution to Andrew's poop problem is the Poopy Prize Bag.  Lisa found a handful of miscellaneous toys, and I dumped them into a gift bag.  I told Andrew each time he poops in the potty, he gets to grab a prize from the Poopy Prize Bag.  And not to be left out, I told Emma she would also get a prize each time Andrew poops in the potty.  Imagine the sisterly love Andrew is receiving from Emma now.  "Damn it, Andrew.  Crap in the crapper so I can get a fu*$ing prize!"

It has only been a week since I started the Poopy Prize Bag, so it's a little early to tell how well it is working.  There has not been a four-times-in-the-pants day; I'll take that as a positive sign.  Also he has gone poop in the potty several times and happily asked for a prize.  Hopefully by this time next month, Andrew will be a man around the porcelain crown, and the next time we need soiled pants changed will be on us in 45 years.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Day 1432 - Me Time!

I finished up my television show last week, so starting this week I am on hiatus (i.e. unemployment).  But what makes this hiatus different from all my other ones from the past four years is that (triumphant drum roll, please) I WILL HAVE TIME TO MYSELF!  I can indulge in the me-ness of me -- although I really wouldn't recommend this to anyone else...I can become quite boring and pathetic during the second week of hiatus.

Lisa and I decided to keep the kids in preschool because we didn't want to lose their place.  Plus if another television project arises for me, the kids will be in school so we wouldn't have to worry about babysitting.  It is quite expensive to put both kids through preschool, but we can make ends meet between Lisa's teaching salary and my ebay/craigslist selling frenzy.

Although it has only been a few days of total me time, I find it relieving and strange.  It is nice to have six hours to yourself every day, but there is something unsettling about a quiet house.  I've been keeping busy the past two days cleaning, reorganizing, and starting my own personal projects.  But when I sit down to eat lunch, it feels really surreal.

Before the kids, meal time used to be about Lisa and I catching up with each other and trying to look interested about each other's work stories.  But with the kids, it's more like refereeing a boxing match.  It's one exhausting thirty minute round of coddling, coercing, and cleaning. 

So imagine how strange it is to sit down at your dining table by yourself with complete silence.  I felt as lonely as Will Smith in I Am Legend or in a theater watching Will Smith in Wild, Wild West.  I'm not complaining about having time to myself, it's just'

Just these few days demonstrates two things to me.  First, it goes to show you how your children whore in on every facet of your life.  Once your kid comes out of that vagina, a giant neon sign that says "OPEN 24/7" starts flashing every single day until you die.  You turn into a 7-11 of parenthood with hopefully less robberies, but just as tasty hot dogs.

The second thing it shows is how hard it will be to see your kids grow up and become their own person.  And I don't mean "hard" in a negative connotation.  It's just that whole "if you love somebody, set them free" thing.  I've only known our kids for four years; half of that time they couldn't even talk and a quarter of that they were just human paperweights.  But just in the last year or so, you begin to see their personality and strengths, and it becomes a really fascinating and endearing thing.  Something you don't want to end.

But who the hell knows.  Maybe the teenage years are going to be hell, and we'll gladly send them out the front door with a gigantic grin and the neon sign turned off.  In the meantime, I'm going to try to make the most out of my me time.  And by that, I mean I'm going to go and turn on my PS3 now.  See ya in six hours!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Day 1430 - Caught with His Pull-Ups Down

I don't want to say that Andrew has learned to lie, but rather he has learned to cover up the errors of his way.  He knows when he has done something wrong.  He knows when he fesses up to it, he will get either get punished or stoned.  So he conveniently plays dumb and does not admit the truth.  Regretfully for him, he does an awful job.

Here are two examples of his failed cover-ups.  The first one involves dry erase marker pen all over the coffee table.  Emma and Andrew have their own big ass dry erase marker activity book.  While they were playing with it, Lisa turned around and noticed a large mark on the table.

"Scott!" she screamed.  "Look at this!  There's dry erase marker all over here!"

"Better dry erase marker than cocaine," I said trying to give some perspective to the situation.

"Andrew, did you do this?" questioned Lisa.

"No, Emma did!" accused Andrew.

Emma looked shocked when she was labeled the culprit.  "I didn't do it!  I didn't do that!"

Upon further investigation, Lisa took Emma's dry erase marker and noticed it was dried out; when she tested Andrew's marker, it worked just fine.  In the immortal words of the late Johnny Cochran:  If the pen don't fit, you must acquit!

I'll agree with you that Andrew's first lie wasn't too amateurish, but this second lie would make Pinocchio look like a pro.  After dinner and fruit, the kids get a little dessert.  It's usually one toddler cookie or two fruit gummies.  This night, the kids got to take some fruit gummies.  Lisa instructed them to only take two from their goodie bag.  But when Lisa turned around (I think we are noticing that Lisa needs to pay more attention to the kids...), Emma accused Andrew of taking more than two gummies.

Lisa saw Andrew with two gummies on his plate, but caught a glimpse of a third gummy in his hand.  Lisa decided to give Andrew a chance to turn himself in by asking him, "Andrew, what do you have in your hand?"

Andrew glanced at his fist and said, "Nothing..."

Lisa gave him one last chance, "Andrew.  One more time.  What do you have in your hand?"

Andrew stared at Lisa blankly and finally said, "A sandwich."

A SANDWICH?  Come on, boy!  You've got to think of something better than a sandwich!  When I was young and got caught with a nudie magazine, at least I had the wit and sophistication to come up with Henry Gray's Anatomy of the Human Body!

When we catch our kids trying to hide something from us, we do try to use the word "truth" more than "lie" so we can emphasize to them how important it is to tell the truth to us.  Covering up your tracks is just something we pick up through life because who really wants to get in trouble.  But hopefully, Lisa and I can teach our kids that there is something honorable and worthy about the truth.  Until they start telling us things in their teenage years that we really don't want to know about.  Lying will be perfectly acceptable in eight to ten years.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Day 1429 - Conversations with Emma

The one thing that Emma loves more than her dolls is taking the clothes off of her dolls.  It really drives me crazy because you see freaky naked dolls strewn across the floor like some Spawn of Chucky horror flick.  And you have little pieces of clothes and shoes all over the house like some swinging 1970s little people orgy.

Emma walked across the floor and yelped because she stepped on one of her doll's shoes.  After an unnecessary amount of whining, she dropped the shoe back on the floor.

"Emma," I said.  "Why did you drop the shoe back on the floor?"

"Because I don't need it," she answered.

"Maybe you should put the shoe back on your doll," I suggested.

"No.  I don't want to," Emma stated.

"But I think your doll wants her shoe back on."  I was really trying.

"Why?" countered Emma.

I thought about it and said, "I bet your doll's feet are very cold!"  Good answer.

"Nooooooo," Emma said with her arms askew.

"Why do you say that?" I asked.

"Her feet aren't real.  She's just a doll, Daddy," explained Emma with condescension reminiscent of her Mommy.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Day 1428 - Picture Friday: Sacramento Edition

Unfortunately, Crazy Gaga & Lazy Papa's house does not have a front door.

 Notice how subtle the shoulder pads make Andrew look like he has grown boobs on his neck.

 Okay.  Maybe Crazy Gaga is right that we haven't been feeding Emma enough.

"I don't want to sit next to someone who doesn't even know how to spell my name!"

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Day 1427 - Am I Tired or Just Stupid

When I returned home from our Northern California trip, I couldn't wait to go to sleep.  Although I didn't want to take a shower, I figured it would be a wise idea not only because it was a hot drive home, but the bathroom I had to use during our rest stop smelled of spoiled urine, caked feces, and special sauce (it was a McDonald's bathroom).

When I stepped into the shower, the first thing I did was pour a handful of shampoo into my hands.  But instead of lathering up my hair, I proceeded to scrub shampoo all over my face.  It took me several seconds to realize I was washing my face with Herbal Essences Hydralicious Reconditioning Shampoo.  I felt like an idiot, but at least my eyebrows have never been more full of body.

I don't know what it was about this last trip, but when I returned home I was exhausted.  And this exhaustion translated to stupidity and forgetfulness.  Or as Lisa corrected, MORE stupidity and MORE forgetfulness.

Usually I am pretty much on the ball, but the last few days I've fallen off the ball, lost the ball, and even crapped on the ball.  Just the other day, I couldn't find my cell phone.  I looked all around the house.  I called my cell phone, and I didn't hear it ring.  I looked inside my car, but it wasn't there either.  Then I retraced my steps, and I remembered throwing out the trash.  But why would I throw my cell phone in the trash.  I'll tell you why.  Because I'm a dumbass!

The kids were watching television upstairs, so I quickly ran to our dumpster.  I called my cell phone, and I heard it ringing.  Unfortunately for me, every resident of our townhouse complex must buy their garbage bags at Costco because every bag looked the same.  Since my appendages are rather short, I couldn't reach the trash.  I had to get a step stool and bend over the dumpster to search for my phone.

Soon the kids peeked from our garage door and shouted, "Daddy!  Why you in the trash!"  I told them I threw my phone into the trash.  The kids asked why, and I told them it was an accident.  This prompted Emma and Andrew to ridicule me with a chant of, "Daddy is silly!", "Daddy threw his phone in the garbage!", and "Daddy's phone smells like poo-poo!"

Some people may attribute my exhaustion to my age.  I'm not getting any younger, and it's natural that as you age, your body just is not the way it used to be.  I say bollocks to this theory.  Especially since my body was never anything to boast about in the first place.

My theory is this:  the kids.  When we've made the Northern California trip with the kids in the past, they were just these little blobs that just slept, pooped, and ate.  You could give them a potato peeler, and it would entertain them for hours.  But now, things are totally different.

The kids are now these little blobs of unsustainable energy.  Their minds are so much more active and inquisitive that the once entertaining potato peeler has been turned into a shiv to threaten us for age-appropriate entertainment and activities.  Where ever we take them, they run around and our threats are a constant source of laughter for them.

Despite my lethargy and numbed mind, the thing that keeps you going, ironically, are the kids.  They may make me wash my face with shampoo and throw my cell phone in the dumpster, but they are the coal to my steaming caboose.  Although they may frustrate and anger us, their untainted view on life and constant laughter is more than enough to put up with a few days of stupidity.  After all, stupid is as stupid does...when you have toddler twins.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Day 1423 - Return of the Maven

Auntie Anne (pretzel maven) returned to Sacramento from her West Coast trip of Oregon, Washington, Vancouver, and Chile just so she could spend some time with the kids.  How lucky for the kids and unlucky for us because we were thrown out into the living room to sleep for our last two nights.  You'd think a Pretzel Maven could afford a few nights at the local HoJo...

The kids really enjoy playing with Auntie Anne (pretzel maven) because she is so playful and has the emotional intelligence of either a five year old or a retarded chimp.  You should see her and the kids throwing their feces against the bathroom wall.  So adorable!  But then Auntie Anne (pretzel maven) did something that wasn't so adorable...

When the kids received their scooters from Crazy Gaga and Lazy Papa, I decided to construct a car ramp for Andrew's cars out of the box.  All it took was a pair of scissors, duct tape, and several viewings of a HowCast video entitled "How to Construct a Car Ramp for Andrew's Cars Out of a Scooter Box".  Pretty specific, eh?

After five minutes, I made this beauty of a car ramp:

Please, please.  Just feel free to send your accolades and praise regarding my car ramp via the comment section.  Not only did I make a tunnel opening at the bottom of the ramp, but I created a starting line with a spare piece of cardboard!  I know...I know.  Just leave a comment...

But then!  Curses, Auntie Anne (pretzel maven)!  When she gave Andrew his birthday gift, his eyes widened as my eyes narrowed.  She bought him a fancy pants, show-off, cars carrying case that converts into a racing ramp!  WTF!

I asked Andrew, "Which ramp do you like more:  Daddy's or Auntie Anne's?"  And he said, "Auntie Anne's."

I took it a step further and said, "Which ramp should we keep at Gaga and Papa's:  Daddy's or Auntie Anne's?"  Once again he picked the evil Pretzel Maven's ramp.

So I tried ONE more time and said, "But Daddy spent so much time and did so much work on making your car ramp.  Don't you want to play with that instead?"  Andrew simply said, "No."  Fine.  Andrew will rue the day when he no longer receives a cardboard box covered with duct tape as a gift!  Rue, I say!

But the one comfort I found with Auntie Anne's (pretzel maven) gift was the way she addressed the package.  Knowing that Auntie Anne (pretzel maven) works in the publishing industry as an editor, writer, and copywriter, let me see if you can find a mistake:

And if you can't quite find it, here's an enlargement:

She spelled Andrew rong!  I wil just taek solase that she rote Andrew's nam rong even thou her gift waz beter than min.  Tak that, yu retardid chimp!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Day 1422 - Scoot Along

For the kids' SECOND early birthday party, Crazy Gaga and Lazy Papa gave the kids new scooters.  As soon as they opened their gifts, Emma and Andrew wanted to ride the scooters immediately so they could skin their knees and elbows and get carried home.
For Andrew, speed means everything.  I, too, thought the same thing when I was younger until girlfriend after girlfriend walked away in disgust.  For Emma, she will not over exert herself on the scooter and is more concerned about not falling down.

To further demonstrate the difference between Andrew and Emma, take a look at this video:


Friday, September 2, 2011

Day 1421 - Picture Friday: Exploratorium Edition

   In three seconds, Emma will learn the literal meaning of "a skeleton in the closet."

 Shrunken down in size, Andrew is pummeled by a hydrogen atom!

The Seven Year Itch interactive exhibit seemed a bit out of place at the Exploratorium.

Andrew's interest grows and grows with the world's largest bong.

Have a great weekend!