Father’s Day Perspective from a Father

I don’t praise myself too often, I am a relatively humble guy, but there are three things I’ve done right in my life and I’ll brag about them whenever I can.

  1. Marrying Stephanie (easy one… I lucked out here. Talk about marrying up!!!)
  2. Being Jackson’s dad (again, easy one. First born son and he’s as close to perfect as any child could ever be)
  3. Being Oliver’s dad (they say the second child is the hardest, but in this case I’d argue that the second child just as near perfect as the first).

There is not a day that goes by that I am not blessed to have these three in my life. Things are not always easy and don’t always go as planned. Work is stressful and there are always bills to pay. But there is one constant guiding light that can brighten any day… being a dad.

I work with children everyday of my life and it’s not easy, but it’s so rewarding to know that you have helped a child succeed. I am lucky because I get to do for a living. I enjoy knowing that others can count on me to support their children just like I would my own children. I consider it honor that parents would trust me with their most prized “possession” (not a great word choice, but the best I could do to convey the importance of one’s child). However much I love being an elementary school educator, I can honestly say there is NO BETTER job in life than being a father to these two little dudes.

Jackson and Oliver, thanks for making me a dad… I love you both very much!

Bend the Knee

Why are things getting tougher?!??? As they age shouldn’t things be easier. I mean I understand the phrase “little kids little problems, big kids big problems,” but should at least certain activities be easier?

Case in point: getting my children into their pajamas. Every night it’s like trying to tame a Targaryen dragon. It’s like trying to get a catch a greased pig. It’s like Rocky chasing that damn chicken. The worst part is… they both know it. They know it’s a struggle and they love it. It’s a game to them. I hate losing… so do they.

Jackson can be convinced, he’s somewhat reasonable. It’s Oliver though who is night in and night out ready to go to war over putting his pajamas on. I can’t say it’s WWE in my house every night when I’m getting trying to get him in pajamas but it is definitely challenging most nights.

You can see it in his eyes as soon as the door to his bedroom swings open. It’s like his promo music comes on the Jumbotron and his chin is held high and chest sticks out a little further. He knows the battle is about to begin. Picture Jon Snow drawing his sword as the Battle of the Bastards is about to begin.

He straightens his legs and becomes stiff as a board. That first leg slides into the onesie with little to no problem… then the battle begins! BEND THE KNEE DAMN IT!!! BEND IT!!!! He doesn’t and he won’t. Not willingly at least.

Try what you want… try to bend it yourself… not a chance. Try “this little piggy” on those little toes… hell try tickling him. All of a sudden he’s able to withstand all attempts to get him to laugh. Bring in reinforcements… mom, older brother. No matter… he ain’t budging. He ain’t bending that knee. Not until he’s sure you’ve lost your will to keep trying. Not until he’s broken your spirit. Not until he’s confident you know he’ll never Bend The Knee… until he’s ready

Tantrum Time

Terrible Twos and/or Torturous Threes? How about the Fearsome Fours? Honestly, I don’t know what to call them… and more importantly I don’t know what i can’t stand more… either the people who don’t have kids and have advice for parents on what to do better, or the parents who tell us how amazing their children’s behavior always is.

We were pretty lucky in the beginning with Jackson. We never really had to deal with temper tantrums. Granted now we’re paying the price, as he has become a little toddler terrorist, taking what he wants and leaving destruction in his path. For the most part though, (he was pretty active), but he never really had temper tantrums.

Oliver, however, is a professional tantrum thrower. For being the happiest always smiling little guy… he sure knows how to throw down. I’ve witnessed this child lay on the floor and cry until you’d think he’d be dehydrated and then while still screaming, get up silently and laugh in my face thirty seconds later.

Those moments are what us parents dread the most, either in the mall or restaurant… or even just at home. When your child is flopping around on the floor like a fish just pulled up on the deck of a boat, screaming and crying like he just found out the next season of his favorite Nexflix series wouldn’t be released for another two years. And how do we try to stop it? We try reasoning with a this tiny human who won’t fully develop reasoning skills for another few years. I always here, “Use your words,” which is like asking me to hold a conversation during Game of Thrones (not happening).

Listen… a toddler tantrum, or any age tantrum for that matter, is a ride out the storm kind of situation. I try to stay calm (and more importantly try not to have an anxiety attack if we’re out in public) and just make sure everyone is safe. We save the talking for later.

Oliver can cry with the best of them. I’ve seen those crying fits come and go. Nothing, especially with a one year old, can prepare you for the intensity of an outburst especially when that outburst happens for the most asinine reason… have you ever suggested that your child not eat dog food? Or tell them to avoid touching a hot stove because, I don’t know… it’s hot? Yea, that’s all it takes. And, Oliver is no different.

Here’s a perfect example… we are decorating the tree and have a fire roaring. The perfect atmosphere to get into the Christmas spirit. The problem here… the placement of said fire. It’s not where my one year old wanted it to be. So what else is there to do but lay on the floor and kick and scream. Obviously, you want the fire on the other side of the room.

Yes my child, one and a half years old, was pissed off because he wanted the fire to be moved to the other side of the room.

… and on that note, bring on the tantrums.

Stellaluna is a White Walker


How do you know you’ve watched too much Game of Thrones ?When you start seeing White Walkers  everywhere… including while you’re reading a bed time story to your kids: 



Stellaluna is a freaking ice zombie!!!!

SPOILER ALERT….

❄️

❄️❄️

❄️❄️❄️

❄️❄️❄️❄️

❄️❄️❄️❄️❄️

❄️❄️❄️❄️❄️❄️

❄️ If there can be a dragon white walker… why not a cute bat from a children’s picture book?

Walkin’ the Mile 💉


Just a miserable way to start of a beautiful Saturday.  This poor kid had no idea what he was about to go up against.  He was just so cute walking through the parking lot, seeing the ambulances and giving high fives to police officers and security guards.

Needless to say he had no idea he was going to be encountering a needle wielding woman who only wanted him  his blood.  It’s tough watching your kid walk so innocently with a big smile knowing he’s about to get stabbed more times than an inmate in a prison fight. The worst part is trying to keep a calm demeanor, because toddlers are like fortune tellers or gypsies or something, one wrong look and they immediately sense imminent danger and their happy, go-lucky attitude turns into all out panic mode as they flee for the nearest exit.  

Luckily we made it to the waiting room, but not with out the saddest looks  from just about every human in the building as we walked down the hall. I’m not even quite sure who the looks were for… Might have been for me knowing what I’m about to endure as well. It was a short distance but the walk felt like a epic journey down that white hallway which was lit by buzzing UV lights. 

We got the waiting room and he immediately made himself at home, pulling out an US Weekly and leafing through the pages.  (On a side note why are all hospital magazines decades old? Is it necessary on a day like today for my son to have to read about Jennifer Anisten and Brad Pitt filing for divorce?  I mean get something from this decade at least!)

The moment of truth arrived soon after Jax read about the falling of the Berlin Wall. As we were called in to a small room with two chairs, one which looked appropriately like an “electric chair” Jax began to understand why  we were there.  Sadly for him it was too late to run. I sat in the electric chair and was instructed to “hold him tight and not to let him move…”  I laughed sarcastically and wondered if they understood holding a two year old down is like trying to catch water with a strainer.  Luckily my PMT training came in handy as the basket hold at least kept him at bay until the needle began to jab him.  I literally watched in horror as they jabbed the needle, what seemed like 19 different times, in various directions and still did not find a vein.  I felt as if I were watching a live episode of Game of Thrones. 

 
After what seemed like hours of trying and more needle jabs than Barry Bonds in his prime, poor Jax was covered in tears and snot.  No SpiderMan bandaid was going to solve this problem and, “no nurse he doesn’t want your Lighteming McQueen sticker.” What he wants is to get the hell out of here and never come back.