My Kids > OCD (Only on December 26th)

Every toy has been unwrapped, opened, put together, had batteries installed and played with. Now to shove them in a corner so the boys can play with the toys Jackson got for his first birthday three years ago. Matching outfits are packed away never to be seen again until the above picture comes out at some holiday get together 20 years from now.

Elfie has returned to the North Pole… (thank god)!!! Santa has come and gone and in his wake is enough cardboard and wrapping paper to pollute the Mississippi River (I still can’t spell without that little tune we learned in third grade). Only one wine glass was broken yet somehow 30 more boxes of decorations than we owned last year seem to have made their way into the attic.

I’ve written about this before, but I still contend that the day after Christmas (especially for someone with OCD) is the worst “day after holiday” of the year. Yea, I know what I’m saying… I was up all night and celebrated a Packers Super Bowl win just a few years ago and had to get up early the next day for work, but that was a joyous wake up… my team won the Super Bowl, so who cares about that day after… I get it… but for me the day after XMAS has always been a disaster.

However, this year… I tried to let it go as best as I could. I let stuff stay out, I didn’t pack up ornaments or the garland on the mantle. the leftovers weren’t nearly packed in separate Tupperware (yup… that’s right, I just covered them with tinfoil). I allows my children to play with their toys and didn’t even make them put one away before playing with another. I sat comfortably while a fire burned warmly in the fireplace, and enjoyed watching my two little boys play together with all the new toys Santa left them the day before.

This Christmas was about them… not me… not anyone… just them… and I enjoyed that much more than a day of OCD controlled cleaning and organizing like I usually do on December 26th… (at least for today).

New Year’s Eve

If you know me, you know I’m far from a Debbie Downer. I’m usually the life of the party, the one with the grand plans for a great time… yes I’m a pessimist by heart, but deep down I know things always seem to find a way to work themselves out (for the most part). I live in some sort of reverse psychology universe. Yet for some reason, the “holiday” that is supposed to be about eternal positivity, new outlooks and second chances makes me want to barf. 

I have so many amazing things to be grateful for over the past year. Although it’s brought many hardships, scary truths and countless trips to the hospital and cemetery, I’ve also seen my son grow into an amazing little boy… so full of life and happiness. It’s hard to have a negative outlook when you constantly hear the cutest little laugh known to man. It’s also easy to be grateful when you love what you do. They say if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. I feel that way each and every morning I’m driving to my new job. 

Yet, even with all that… I still hate New Year’s Eve. Maybe it’s because I’ve spent my entire life as an educator and to me and the real New year starts in September and ends in June. I guess it’s possible that it’s because of the insane amount of people who forget the damn apostrophe on “Year.” It’s New Year’s Eve. Even my first graders know that! Or maybe I’m just a New Year Scrooge.

I’m not glad 2016 is over, nor do I care that 2017 is here. If New Year’s Eve 2016 is like any other night I’ve experienced lately, especially now that I’m a parent, I’ll be in bed by 8:30. Here’s hoping everyone just does their own thing this year or month or whenever. Whatever you do… I’ll be over here doing me or at least doing what the little guy wants to do! 

PS: Hey 2017, bring me a Packers Super Bowl victory and I’ll quickly change my tune. ❤

Dove’s Dad Commercial Won the Super Bowl

Super Bowl commercials do one (maybe two) of the following to the viewers: hype us up, make us laugh, or make us cry.  This year there were a few of the hype and comedic commercials… but it was the attempts to make us cry that seemed to prevail.

The folks at Dove have decided to go with the latter this year by running an ad as part of its #RealStrength campaign, which depicted children of all ages and races calling out for their father.  Essentially, the spot contains only one word the entire time: “dad.”  Whether it was “dad,” “daddy,” or “dada” the commercial shows real dads who are a positive influence on their children.

This commercial brought on all the feels.  Chills, Goosebumps, tears… you name it we felt it!  In doing research for this commercial Dove says that it conducted a survey in which only 13% of the 1,000 fathers surveyed said that fathers are portrayed as care givers for their children.  This commercial is perfect.  It’s a simple and beautiful statement.  Fathers are responsible for more than teaching their children about sports, girls and cars.

Recently, mom and I have been playfully arguing back and forth about Jackson’s first words.  I swear we’ve heard him say “dada” a few times.  Hearing your son call you dad for the first time would make even the Grinch’s heart grow..

Most of the time dads are portrayed in a negative light in the media. I for one am happy to be a dad who prides himself in being largely involved in his son’s life.  I am glad this ad ran during the Super Bowl, not just because of how horrible the other ads were, but because it gives us dads a little air time in a positive light.  Plus, it gave us a good reason to shed a few tears… but only a few, because remember dads are tough… we don’t cry!

dad

The Worst Parenting Related Super Bowl Commercials

  1. Coke: “Make it Happy”

Today’s buzz word is BULLYING.  Everywhere you turn bullying, bullying, bullying.  It is a societal epidemic.  Schools are riddled with children who are afraid to be themselves and Coke all of a sudden has a solution?  Nope, not going to happen.  Don’t put any onus on the bully, just drink coke and life is great!  This had a chance to do something good.. .but instead it was just empty promises from a company who gives kids cavities and diabetes, not ways to deal with bullying.

  1. Nissan: “With Dad”

First of all, this wasn’t even a commercial; it was a full length feature film.  Premise of a son torn between happiness for his successful dad and resentment for his absent father?  Again… we might have something here… I thought the dad might die in a crash or something and the son would think about the time he missed out on with his dad especially with “Cats in the Cradle” playing in the background. I was invested in this one… I thought this one had it all.  All that was missing here was Jack telling Rose farewell in the frozen Atlantic.  But then the ad ends with the dad picking up the son in a Nissan… that’s it?  I feel like this ad did the reverse of what it was trying to do… selfish dad comes around only when it’s convenient to him. There was definitely some hidden propaganda in this one, I’m just not sure what it was.

  1. Nationwide: “Make Safe Happen”

Just throwing death in our faces during the Super Bowl?  If there was ever a perfect time for Ron Burgundy’s quote “Well that escalated quickly” this was it!  I get the premise of the ad… yet… not sure the message was delivered appropriately, and definitely wasn’t delivered in the right setting.   There are better avenues to educate parents on keeping their children safe and Nationwide decides to use the Super Bowl which is a time away from reality for so many people. The Super Bowl?  The FREAKING SUPER BOWL?  You chose the Super Bowl to kill a child?  If I wasn’t already freaked out enough about my son starting to crawl… you literally killed a little boy in front of our eyes!   Nationwide says they created this ad to get everyone “talking.”  Well you did just that… we’re talking about how much we hate you Nationwide.  If this commercial makes you want to buy Nationwide insurance, then I literally loathe you more than this commercial itself.