Random Thought for Thursday: Nose Hair

“Daddy, when I get older will I have hair come out of my nose?”

Sweetie asked me this question from the back seat and I immediately felt that I had to handle it delicately. She had been quiet prior to the asking, so I knew it was something she was thinking about. I didn’t want her thoughts to turn into worries.

Everyone knows that everyone has hair in their nose, right? Rather, everyone who is not 3 years old know this. I couldn’t tell her she already had hair in her nose. What if I made her feel silly for asking the question? What if this fact of nature freaked her out?

I am a fairly hairy guy (good Eastern European genes there), and I happen to be approaching 40. So I am losing hair where I want to have it (on my head), and growing it where I don’t want it (ears, eyebrows and nose). Any guy who is getting older can tell you this happens. So I know half of the population does grow more nose hair as they age. But is it the same for women?

 While I was weighing the best way to answer Sweetie’s question, she piped up:

“If I don’t, then all the dust and garbage and stinky houses will all get in.”

Yes, you read that right, dust and garbage and stinky houses. Maybe this was not such a concern after all. Maybe this was just part of their lesson plan of the week: learning about the senses.

“Yes, honey, I imagine you will.”

Question answered, on to the next one.

What can I ask next?

What can I ask next?

It’s the principle

“Ain’t the size [of the scratch] that’s in question here, it’s the principle.”

I was reminded of this quote when Sweetie made some bad decisions at a recent play date. She decided to bring a toy home from her friend’s house, but didn’t bother asking. That’s right – THIEF!

Obviously “life lessons” take all shapes and come from all places. We all know it’s cliché, but yes, even Hollywood can capture a lesson on the big screen. The above quote is from Pharaoh Joe, a character from George Lucas’ movie American Graffiti. American Graffiti is one of George Lucas’ earlier, sometimes overlooked, films. Set in 1962, it is Lucas’ ode to the 60’s, when he was a teenager living in California. The movie draws on his experience and tells a coming of age story involving girls and growing up, cruising and cars.

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One of my favorite scenes shows a heavyhearted Curt (Richard Dreyfuss) brooding in front of an appliance store. He’s sitting on a car fender staring at the window display televisions and listening to the Wolfman Jack radio program.

CurtCruise

Curt is ruminating about a mysterious woman in a white 1956 Thunderbird (Suzanne Somers). They shared a moment when their cars were cruising side-by-side and she looked over at him and smiled.

Who's that lady?

Who’s that blonde?

He’s so caught up in his infatuation (and singing along with the show) that he doesn’t notice three guys walk up on him until they join him at the car.

What are you doin', creep?

What are you doin’, creep?

There is some intimidating banter made by one of the guys, who is Joe (Bo Hopkins) the leader of the Pharaohs car club. He explains that Curt is sitting on a car owned by a friend of the Pharaohs. Curt tries to casually slide off the fender and walk away, but he’s stopped so Joe can show him a scratch across the hood. Curt tries to clean it off with his finger and some spit (very technical repair) and plays the scratch off as being not so big. And then the quote: An obviously frustrated Joe looks at the scratch and declares, “Ain’t the size that’s in question here, it’s the principle”.

Let’s get back to our crime. Sweetie’s friend, code name “Kevin” (he likes Minions) invited us over to play on a vacation day. We had originally met Kevin and his mother, Momstar, over a year ago, but it wasn’t until Sweetie started school that we re-connected with them and learned that they a few blocks away. The day went fine, with the kids making a mess and a racket and generally playing like kids. It wasn’t until we were loaded in the car (“we” also includes the Cricket) that Sweetie pulled a traffic cone out of her pocket. Given that Kevin’s has his train table near the door, I knew she had sticky fingers. Note that the cone is maybe one inch tall, and she has a Duplo cone just like it. So it’s not the size of the stolen toy in question here, it’s the principle.

You stole THIS?!?

You stole THIS?!?

I took the cone away from her and told her that she would be returning it to Kevin the following day after school. I figured this gave her a full day to stew in her guilt. And she immediately started peppering me with questions about the incident. When we got home I sent a “Thank you” text to Momstar, and informed her of the stolen toy. She laughed it off, but she backed my plan for a public return and apology. The next day at pick-up we stepped off to the side and Sweetie returned the toy with no hesitation. Kevin accepted his toy without any drama, and in a matter-of-fact tone told Sweetie, “Next time just don’t take any of my toys home with you.”

Despite feeling infuriated by Sweetie’s theft, I stayed cool throughout the entire incident. When I discovered the toy, I explained that you don’t steal from your friends. I told her that was a sign of disrespect and was not nice. Momstar supported how I chose to address the situation, and again, all was calm. I am well aware that children take things, and getting caught is often the best way they learn not to steal. All In all, I think I made good use of this teachable moment. In American Graffiti, Curt takes a ride with the Pharaohs, and through their misadventures they become friends. While my approach was not as cool as cruising around town in a chop-top ’51 Merc, I think Sweetie got the point. And I know it’s better to collect friends like Kevin who share their toys versus ones that steal quarters from pinball machines for gas money.

PharoahJoe

Happy New Year!?!

In my previous post I said I did not know how many installments I would write for the D-3 “Christmas Survival Guide”. Yeah, it came out to that one post – definitely an opportunity for improvement in 2016. Honestly, if I knew that was my last post for 2015 I would have wished you, my dear readership, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. But that’s why I’m writing this post!

Would you believe that the delay was part of my plan? That I didn’t want to share holiday internet space with everyone else, but instead wanted to wait until mid-January to share pictures of the girls? That way, there’s no competition and you can focus solely on them. No, I’m not buying it either, and I’m writing it. Anyway, here they are:

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To tell the truth, we had a strangely busy holiday season. Most of Wife’s family were travelling and out of town, and everyone local on my side got together on the same day. But our foursome stayed busy throughout. And what a great problem to have! We spent a bunch of time together as a family. Movie nights, lots of playtime, some Christmas adventures. It was great.

And now we’re in the new year. I don’t know about you guys, but mine is starting off at full-pace – I can’t believe we are already 3 weeks in. I was just able to read over the year-end numbers from WordPress to see how this blog did last year. I was a bit disappointed to see that I posted 5 fewer entries than in 2014 – that’s on me. I was very excited to see that the site hits had gone way up though. And that is because of all of you, my dear readership!

So let me put a great big “THANK YOU” to all of you out there who take the time to read, comment, like, follow, re-post and all of that other stuff that shows support for the detour. That’s big thanks to my family and friends for their continued support; to the new followers who came on board; to the people using the comments section, particularly BDB; to my girls for the continuous, sometimes overwhelming, font of material; and to Wife, my top supporter, most constructive challenger, thorough editor, available sounding board and the best partner ever. All of you help to get me in front of the computer to write these entries and share these stories and I appreciate your support of this blog and this family.

And so we’re off and running. I think it is customary to feel nostalgic during this time of year. I get that feeling around November and it usually lasts until February. So I am going to use it to re-visit some notes and stories from earlier in the year. You know, make up for stuff I didn’t do in 2015 (even though I don’t believe you really can). With Sweetie’s PreK-3 rolling into it’s second half, and Cricket’s everyday adventures continuing to ramp-up, there is a lot of new stuff to write about also. So again, thanks for taking the detour with us, and please continue to enjoy the trip.

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Xmas Holiday Prep – Part 1: The Tree

We have had our tree up since the day after Thanksgiving, so I figure it’s time to share. Yes, it’s an artificial tree. But it’s pretty, no? We think so.

Oh Tannenbaum!

Oh Tannenbaum!

Before you beat me up in the comments, let me point out what is most obvious: only the upper half of our tree is decorated with ornaments. For those of you out there who are “parents of toddlers”, the reason for this is obvious and necessary (as it turns out, pet owners will also recognize this style of decorating). To the unenlightened, let me share with you the magical attraction that ornaments possess. Much like all things sharp, electrified, high up or generally dangerous, ornaments emit a siren call to human beings shorter than four feet tall.

So the entire tree was decorated. But as grabby hands explored the lower branches ornaments moved up. So I share this in solidarity with my fellow parents, and put it out there as a general warning to would-be parents. Have a Christmas tree, or any holiday decorations for that matter? Prepare to put them much higher than your pre-toddler levels. They just want to touch all the ornaments and play with them and remove them from their assigned branches.

I am not really sure how many installments of Christmas adventure I’ll end up posting here. The D-3 Christmas Preparation and Survival Guide is very much a work-in-progress. Stay tuned for our next post though – toddler holiday cards!

Less terrible when lit!

Eh, less terrible when lit

Happy Halloween!

Tricks and treats, spooky ghouls and ghosts – it’s time. Happy Halloween!

Daddy's Little Monster!

Daddy’s Little Monster!

So 45º and rainy does not make for a great Halloween, but you have to make the most of it.

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We decided against the local treasure hunt, but stopped in at a couple of stores to eat and run some errands.

Mos Eisley Cantina?

Mos Eisley Cantina?

 

And really, what fun is running errands if you can’t bring your wookie with you?

Bring your wookie shopping day!

Bring your wookie shopping day!

This is the first year for our family costume, so we all got in on the fun. And here is probably the best part – that is Wife as Chewbacca, DIY suit and all.

All in!

All in!

It seems like the rain has stopped for now. The trick-or-treaters are starting to come around, so maybe we will get rid of some of these 200 juice boxes. Have a Happy Halloween and stay safe out there!

Almost Time!

True, Halloween isn’t until tomorrow. But there are events happening at the school and the girls are dressed up and I haven’t given you all any pictures for a while. So here’s something to hold you over…

Practicing for the big day!

Practicing for the big day!

The Cricket will be in a different costume on the 31st. We are going to try our hand at a “Family Costume”. Want to guess the theme?

Help me Obi-Wan...

Help me Obi-Wan…

All credit due to Buya and Wife here. But there’s more to come! Have a safe end of your week…

Random Thought for Thursday: Ca-Ca, Ma-Ma, Da-Da

I am a firm believer that a child’s early lexicon is a direct representation of their environment. An unfiltered reflection of what they are living. We are reaching a point where Cricket’s babbling is starting to shape up into words. As you can guess by the title, Cricket’s three favorite words are Ca-Ca, Ma-Ma, and Da-Da. Oh yes, in that order.

I figure she is gaining an awareness of her body and what is happening to her. And her words are reflecting this experience. Poop is gross and uncomfortable, so she is learning to advise us when she is soiled. That’s the ideal. Of course right now just about everything is “Ca-Ca” (which is very easy to mistake for “gracias”, her number 4 favorite word). Everything except Wife, who of course is “Ma-Ma”. Now Mother is the Source, right? She is the fount of life from conception until she is not. So there’s no surprise that Ma-Ma is a favorite. And me? Well I’m always around. I’m happy with a top three finish.

Micompadre could chime in here to explain these beginning sounds and early speech development. He knows all about the different language sounds and where we make them and such. But I didn’t feel like interviewing him on the topic. We’ll just keep working with Cricket and see what forms next. We didn’t push Sweetie, and we won’t push Cricket. I don’t want her to tell me, “Da-Da, Ca-Ca.”