Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The One Where She's Named

A couple months before SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost was born, Rach and I were hanging out in the basement, watching a movie, when her phone rang.

Hi there! What's up? Oh, yeah!?! What'd you pick? Really! That's cool. No, not at all. Nope. Okay. Sounds good. Alright...talk to you later. Love ya.

That was my mom...they picked a name for their puppy. She wanted to make sure it wasn't what we picked for SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost.

Okay, so what is it? What'd they pick?


Are you shi**ing me!?! Seriously!?! Of all the names in all of the baby name books THAT'S the one they pick for their dog!?! And you didn't tell her?

Yep...and nope.

Why didn't you tell her? You're going to let her go ahead with this? You don't think she'll be upset when she finds out?

Yep...and nope.

You should at least call Boyd and tell him...just to make sure.
Rach reluctantly made the call to Boyd and it was decided that SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost would stick for both kid and dog. We were fine with it. He was fine with it. Grandma Abby would surely be fine with it, right?

Fast forward a couple months to that eventful morning when SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost (the kid...not the dog) was born. I left the recovery room to meet up with the family members anxiously awaiting details of the birth. They swarmed as I rounded the corner and I unleashed the details:
It's a girl!

Tell us something we didn't already know!

She weighs 6lbs 12oz.

And her name!?! Tell us her name!!!

We'll call her...SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost.
The grandparents swooned:
That's adorable!
How sweet!
Ooooh...I love it!
Except Grandma Abby:
Wait? What? What'd you say her name is?

Her jaw dropped...a twitch kicked the twinkle from her eyes:



Uh huh...


Just like your dog.


Cool, huh!?!

Why didn't you say something?

No need...one's a dog, one's a kid. It won't be confusing. [Translation: Rach is stubborn and wasn't going to reveal her name to any grandma no matter the trickery]
Several weeks later Grandma Abby stopped by to visit and informed us that there had been a name change:
We decided SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost wasn't a good name for the dog?

Why's that? We're cool with it.

I know...it's just that, well, I was over at my friend's house the other day and I told her that SheWhoseBlogNameWillBeRevealedInThisPost had already figured out how to get in the cabinet for her treats. She looked at me kinda strange and said, "Your granddaughter can already get her treats?" I decided that it was probably best to change the name.

Oh...well, if you want to, that's fine. What'd you pick?


And so, here we are on this last day of November, 2010. It's been a fabulous month of blogging. Hopefully in a few years when Mini-Me, The Wubster, and Mickey (the kid...not the dog) can read, they'll enjoy looking back at all the Noisy Little Adventures we've had!

See you in December!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Where'd November Go?

Wow...here we are in the waning hours of November and, thus, my 11-minute blogging challenge is coming to a close. It's hard to believe I'll write my 30th consecutive post tomorrow.

It hasn't been an easy month of blogging. There were definitely times I struggled for at least 11 minutes to think of a topic before setting the timer which I then ignored.Thanks to Mini-Me, The Wubster, and SheWhoseNameWillBeMadeOfficialTomorrowInASweepsWeekStyleEndingToTheNovemberChallenge it never took long to come up with something. It helped that, like the cliche about Midwestern weather, "If you don't have something to write about the kids, just wait a minute and they'll change that." My little tornado-muses tore through the house, embedding story-fodder in the walls and across the floors. Those stains may never come out.

As this challenge draws to a close, I've started debating where to go from here. Daily posts are awesome for readers, but I'm hoping to settle into a weekly schedule. If that upsets you, never fear, because I won't be doing that until January. In December crazybastard66, Dougy, and I will be challenging each other to write daily, OneWord style. We're each contributing ten or so words and we'll draw one randomly each day to inspire our writing. Interesting? Let's hope so.

P.S. I can't leave the post without a quote from tonight...we decided to take the kids for a drive through the neighborhood to look at Christmas lights. Midway through the adventure Rach said something 'silly' and here's what followed:
Me: Mini-Me, tell mommy she's 'redonkulous'!
Mini-Me: Mommy, you're a donkey!
The Wubster: A donkey [he repeats the last two words of every sentence said near him]
Rach: I'm not a donkey! If I'm a donkey, do you know what that makes you!?!
Us: Uncontrollable giggling
Mini-Me: Not a donkey?
The Wubster: A donkey!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Up on the Rooftop

For the most part, I'm okay with heights.

I really enjoy tall roller coasters, mountain climbing, rappelling, and leaping tall buildings in single bounds.

But climbing the ladder to hang Christmas lights? It freaks me out a little. Check that...it freaks me out a lot. It makes my imagination kick into mega-overdrive!

And the weird part? I used to jump off roofs as a kid. [Don't tell my kiddos]

There's just something about the "steadiness" of an aluminum ladder leaning against the house above a slab of concrete while I reach side to side to clip lights to my roof that affects my nerves.

It doesn't help that I'm a perfectionist when it comes to hanging Christmas lights. Every light on the roof must be individually clipped so that all bulbs face the same direction. I want clean lines on my house. Is that so wrong? Is it wrong that I judge others who appear to have just tossed their lights up with reckless abandon? Tis the season, right?

Mini-Me begged me to put multi-colored lights on the roof this year and I shot down that idea. I like the crispness of a solid color along the roof line. I will NOT stoop to adding multi-colored lights to MY roof! Tis the season, right?

It seems I'm not just a perfectionist when it comes to my Christmas lights...I'm a Scrooge.

Before you think there'll be a stocking full of coal waiting for me Christmas morn, I did add multi-colored lights to some of our shrubbery and I surprised the boys by hanging a couple strands of multi-colored lights along the ceiling of their bedroom.

In doing all of that, I didn't quite finish my crisp, clean roof lines. Looks like this year I've got a bonus day of precarious ladder awesomeness ahead of me! Thanks, Santa!

Infamous Firsts

“So many things in the world have happened before. But it’s like they never did. Every new thing that happens to a person, it’s a first."

Louise Erdrich, Love Medicine
I know I'm not the first father whose Mini-Me has yelled, "I hate you" or "I don't like you" or "You're being mean" at bedtime.

I know I'm not the first father who's ended up following a pleasant story time with a raised voice.

I know I'm not the first father who's teetered on the perilous precipice of love and anger.

I know I'm not the first, but it doesn't change the fact that I'm frustrated our bedtime ritual now seems to include yelling and crying. Once Mini-Me's finally in bed, either ours or the guest bed in the basement since he can't resist waking up his brother, I'm spent. I'm emotionally drained. I'm spiraling into self-loathing. On particularly bad nights (like tonight) I long for past freedoms.

I never thought I'd be the disciplinarian. Not that I didn't imagine myself doling out laws, I knew I would. It's more that I thought I'd be the fun dad...the 'good cop'. I thought Rach would be the one who'd have to step in and be strict about noise, bed times, or dinner-time rambunctiousness. Instead it's me. I feel most responsible for getting after the boys when they're screaming through the house slamming doors, refusing to go gently into that good night, or goofing off at the dinner table. I feel like I'm the one who makes a big deal out of it. My perfectionist side begs for kids who'll act always on their best behavior while my logical side keeps telling the perfectionist to shove off. He's so damn tenacious, though.

Thus we've ended up at nights like this one: an overtired Mini-Me vs. an overtired Me. He can't simply lay down and shut his eyes. It's not how he works. He lays down in bed, summons the energy of forty-eight cotton-top tamarins, then kicks, rolls, bounces, laughs and FIGHTS against sleep. Eventually, we'll find him angelically sleeping, but not until after he's dished out some "I hate you"s and I've dished out some frustration-laced "GET IN BED NOW"s, ineffective attempts at rational thought, and an occasional swat on the rear.

It's in those moments that I have to find distance. I have to get away from the anger and disappointment I feel in myself. Luckily, this month I've spent my evenings writing about our Noisy Little Adventures, which returns me to the happiness that fill 90% of our days.

I know he's not the first kid to do this.

I know I'm not the first father to feel this.

I know that this, too, shall pass...
but, damn, it sucks right now!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Deck the halls!

The boys are ecstatic!

We began decorating for Christmas, which, with the help of the kiddos, means we only got as far as putting the tree together and cluttering (is it cluttering if it was already cluttered?) the living room with box upon box of decorations.

The decorations aren't what's got the boys excited, though.

Nor is it the impending visit from a certain bearded fellow (Papa Boyd's coming over?).

They're thrilled because there's a new 'toy' under the tree that turns the lights on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and on and...

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks

I'm thankful for:
The Wubster

My beautiful wife, Rach
Our comfy house
Our wonderful neighbors
Our marvelous extended family
Our phenomenal friends

The opportunity and ability to share our Noisy Little Adventures

Playing super heroes with Mini-Me
Playing catch with The Wubster
Snuggling with SheWhoIsSoCuteAndSnuggly

Mini-Me's love of books, but especially ones about Batman
The Wubster's love of The Gruffalo
SheWhosDiscoveringBooksandHerSelf kissing herself in the mirror at the end of her book

Making chocolate chip pancakes every Sunday for Mini-Me
Making a Pumpkin Spice Latte for The Wubster this morning (VERY light on coffee...my rules, not his)
Making mashed veggies and fruit for SheWhosLikingSmashedFood

Losing to Mini-Me at Wii Sports Resort Sword Fighting
Losing to TheWubster at Just Dance
Losing to SheWhoIsOnlySixMonths at Who's Cuter?

Family dance parties
Family bands
Family naps

Family trips to the zoo
Family trips to the park
Family trips to Hawaii

Nights without tantrums
Mornings without tantrums
Afternoons without tantrums
Pipe dreams

Kid hugs
Kid kisses
Kid tackles
Kid tickles
Kid giggles

Meli [dog] not puking in the middle of the night
Gretchen [cat] not crapping on the stairs
Me [mostly human] not regretting I typed those last two in the morning

And sooooo much more!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!! Hope you had a wonderful day!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

An Addiction to Cake?

Based on conversations during after-school pick-ups, I've come to the conclusion that Mini-Me and his friends are addicted to birthday parties. It’s all they talk about!

Earlier in the fall our father-son "How was school today!?!" conversations were pretty standard:
How was school today?
Di'ja do anything fun?
I don't remember.
What'd you play with?
I don't remember.
What'd you have for lunch?
I don't remember. 
Lately, though, I'm regaled with tales of playground exploits centered around birthday invites.
Daddy, "April" said I can come to her birthday party.
Daddy, "Christian" was mean to me on the playground today. I don't want him to come to my birthday party.
Daddy, today "Willson" said I could come to his birthday party, but I had to get him a good present.
Daddy, today "Lacey" said I was a silly boy. It hurt my feelings. I don't want to go to her birthday party now.
Daddy, I told "Alex" he could come to my birthday party, but then I asked him if he had any super hero toys and he said no. I’m not going to invite him to my birthday party now
Turns out, birthday parties are preschool crack...all it takes is one and they're hooked!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


It intrigues me to think about myself in high school now that I’m an adult…in high school.
In the early 90’s, roaming the halls of Garland High School, I wanted nothing more than to fit in, to be the same, to go with the flow, to be noticed...but not too much. I was quiet and hesitant to speak up in class during instruction, but at the same time I did my fair share of talking amongst friends and classmates during those precious moments in between.

I certainly wasn’t the kid who tried to be different, but I was. We were all different. We were teenagers.

I recently found an invitation my friends and I created for our IB (International Baccalaureate) group’s International Dinner freshman year.

Members of our group represented Spain, Puerto Rico, India, China, Germany, and the United States. We were incredibly different, but we couldn’t have felt more similar. Our diverse backgrounds brought unique perspectives into the group, but they didn’t change the fact that we were the same at our core: teens working to succeed in high school; struggling at times with grades, peers, and parents; hoping to fit in and find our place.

I'm no longer as quiet as I was in high school. Instead I'm a teacher working with a diverse group of teens who aren't that different from 90s us. Sure, they've got cell phones and mp3 players instead of beepers and Walkmans, they sneak into $10 movies instead of $4 ones, and they can eat 4th meal at Taco Bell while we had to settle for 3rd. Beneath it all, though, they're still teens working to succeed in my classes; struggling at times with grades, peers, and parents; hoping to fit in and find their place.

We're different, but we're the same.

Monday, November 22, 2010


Five days away from home changes everything!

Having a room to myself while at the NCTE conference was quiet and peaceful.

Only having to get myself ready in the morning was relaxing and swift.

Reading bedtime stories of my choosing allowed me to actually finish the book I’ve been working on for months.

When I returned to our Noisy Little Adventures yesterday, though, I was as overwhelmed as a leaf floating gently from branch to brook, tumbling noiselessly until being swept downstream and battered by rapids.

We arrived home from the airport and the boys immediately ran to the living room and started playing their keyboards. They cranked the volume to 11.

“Turn it down, guys! That’s a bit too loud!”
Later, they chased each other around the couches, up and down the hallway, into the kitchen, and back again, squealing delightfully the entire time.

“Slow down, guys! And keep it down, too…you’re inside!”
Dinner involved gibberish and bouncing from seat to seat.

“Sit down and eat, please! No yelling at the table!”
Bath time? Yep…you guessed it!

“Whoa! Settle down…stop splashing water out of the tub! Shhh…SheWhosTryingToSleep's trying to go to sleep!”
As the boys eventually settled into bed, Rach looked at me,

“Overwhelming, eh?”
“A bit…”

“Yeah, well, that was actually quieter than usual."

Sunday, November 21, 2010


I heard it on the buses.

I heard it from the 'cast'.

I read it on signs.

I saw it in children's eyes.

Disney World is a magical place on Earth.

You know what was magic to me, though?

The sound of my boys' excited, giggling voices as the van doors opened at the airport in STL:
"Poopy daddy!"
"Yeah! Hi poopy daddy!"
"Poopy doopy daddy!"
"Poopy stinky doopy daddy!"
"Dinky stinky pinky poopy daddy!"
"Poopy daddy!"
Experience that magic!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Daze Delay

This is an extended version of a story I discussed in a previous post and was written during one of my sessions today at NCTE:

I've never seen someone so happy to fail.

An unknowing observer might say there was no heart behind your actions, but I know better. Every bend of knee, extension of arm, and flick of wrist was done with heart--you were in love.

It just wasn't with basketball.

Her name is 'Amelia' and the minute she switched to your team for one-on-one drills your world erupted. Was it her shoulder-length blonde hair? A glimmer in her excited blue eyes? The way she dribbled the basketball with both hands? Whatever it was, you were smitten and couldn't hold back any longer. As coaches explained the finer points of bounce passing, you turned to 'Amelia' and proclaimed,

"I'm Batman!"
She didn't recoil in fear or shyness. She didn't drop a cold shoulder. She took the bait.
"I'm 'Amelia'!"
In that instant, the basketball court faded away.
"I have a utility belt and a cape! I'm going to play on the playground after this. Are you?"
She turned and ran. You looked heart broken and confused until you realized she'd run to her mother to demand a trip to the playground after practice. Her heart was yours.

And so, as the coaches reentered your world and lined you up for free throws, only one thing was on your mind. You took each shot and missed, but there was a glimmer in your eye, a smile across your face, and joy filling your chest, because 'Amelia' waited at the end of the line.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Unwrapping is Overrated

It's been another thrillingly exhaustive day at the NCTE conference. So far I've teared up during Erin Gruwell's speech about her Freedom Writers, pondered attending Indiana University so I could spend more time with four professors who presented new contexts for teaching literature, found inspiration from the National Teacher of the Year, scored a ton of free books, including autographs from David Levithan (author of Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist), Mary McDonagh Murphy (author of Scout, Atticus & Boo), and, my favorite, Tony Romano (author of When the World was Young and If You Eat, You Never Die), and, most importantly, presented with Jodi Douglas, Gary Anderson, and the aforementioned Tony Romano. The Writers Week presentation went well in front of a small, but attentive crowd who expressed great interest in exploring the possibility at their schools.

During all of the sessions this morning, I chuckled a few times, laughed a few more, but nothing prepared me for the giggling that came when I got back to my room, checked Facebook, and found the following post from my wife, who's been burdened with my morning responsibilities this week:
"So I sat some oatmeal and a mini muffin in front of [The Wubster] this morning and when I turned back around, the muffin, wrapper and all, was gone. Guess I'll just be thankful it wasn't a foil wrapper."

Bringing the day full circle, I had tears in my eyes once more. I've only been away two days, but I miss my kiddos and the laughter they bring into our lives. While they may test our patience by not listening and spiraling into tantrums when we'd rather they didn't, they are our amazing creations and I cherish them with every ounce of my soul.

After reading Rachel's post, I sat imagining the scene and what might have crossed that two-year-old brain as mouth closed upon papery muffin. Oh, if only we knew!

Walking around these Disney resorts, I imagine the kids are with me, thrilled by the elaborate swimming pools, fascinated by the vivid colors, ecstatic at the prospect of meeting Mickey and the gang. I look forward to bringing them to this most magical place on earth, but we should probably wait until they won't throw tantrums they're all old enough to form lasting memories of the trip.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A Step Up

I'm at Disney World for a few days at the National Council of Teachers of English conference where I'll be part of an awesome presentation on Writers Week...you should stop by if you're in the neighborhood! Aside from that, I'm checking out numerous other sessions centered around literacy, hobnobbing with fellow English teachers, and hopefully picking up some free books and author autographs. Tonight I listened to Lois Duncan speak and got an autographed copy of I Know What You Did Last Summer, one of my favorite novels in middle school. It was awesome!

Also awesome was the Writer's Workshop session presented by Penny Kittle and Tom Romano. It was an amazing hour-and-forty-five minutes of writing and discussion. Here's one of my quick writes from the session in which we had to choose a quote, phrase or line for inspiration:

"Just because it's on the floor, it doesn't mean you step on it!"

Really?!? That's going to be one of my parenting tag lines? That's one of the things Mini-Me, The Wubster, and SheWhosNotActuallyGuiltyOfThisYet will remember about me?

I've lost count of how many times the phrase has poured from my lips, but, during a recent bedtime firestorm, it sank in that it's too many when Rach said it, too.

I just can't fathom the complexities of childhood vision that cause me to utter this phrase so much. Is it that the boys' noses are too big? Are their eyes too close together? Maybe their bottom eyelids are stuck? Could it be that their limited height changes the dynamics of vision and interrupts the angles at which light bounces from the floor, creating an ocular Bermuda Triangle.

I don't step on stuff. I watch where I walk. It's easy for me (when the lights are on) but, then again, I'm not four. Or two. Or six months.

I don't find joy in the tactile sensations of separating myself from that boring old carpet. Oh, how a Casio keyboard underfoot must feel! Or the complete works of Dr. Seuss, the remote control, daddy's laptop (which he should've known not to leave on the floor)!

Any time we move a piece of furniture, one of the cats immediately notices and spends hours examining the house from her new perch. The kids must have the same 'nose' for change. They hunt out misplaced objects and stand on them, except they don't seem to realize they're doing it. It's just an innate challenge of gravity, breaking free of the norm, gaining of new perspectives.
It's certainly not finished or polished, but it's a start.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I'm going to get four nights of uninterrupted sleep.


If it is interrupted it won't be because of Meli (The Wubster of our two Golden Retrievers) waking up in the middle of the night to go outside and bark at absolutely nothing pee.

It won't be because The Wubster wakes up screaming.

It won't be because The Wubster crawls into our bed and headbutts me or kicks me in the groin until he falls asleep.

It won't be because SheWhoWontYetSleepThroughTheNight won't yet sleep through the night.

It'll be my own fault.

It'll be because I miss the interruptions.

It'll be because I feel guilty for the opportunity.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Holy Crazy Neighbors, Batman!

I wonder what the neighbors think of us...mainly because I know what we think of the neighbors.

I'm not talking about our awesome neighbors next door or directly across the street, though...and not even the folks with a baker's dozen of concrete raccoons in the yard. It's more the neighbors who pass by on their way to and from work, the store, or their super-secret spy gigs. They only see us in micro-snap shots. What do they think when they see:
  • Mini-Me in full Batman regalia speeding down the sidewalk in his peddle car/Batmobile?
  • The Wubster driving two Little Tykes cars coupled with a bike lock and pushing a Bubble mower at the same time?
  • SheWhoseNameHasBeenDecidedButIDontWantToGiveUpThisStyleOfNameJustYet in a Baby Bjorn strapped to Meli (our Golden Retriever) during a game of fetch?
  • Me trying to explain to two police officers and a DFS social worker that I was just trying to be funny in cyberspace and I would never attach my daughter to Meli...Gracie, maybe, but not Meli?
Could their imaginations possibly do justice to our Noisy Little Adventures?
Who knows...I'd just like 'em to slow down.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Short, but Sweet: An Actual 11-Minute Post!

How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop?


Tonight, I watched Mini-Me and The Wubster joyfully devour a Tootsie Pop and a Dum-Dum, respectively, and I realized that, while my boys may never get a chance to see an owl eat a Tootsie Pop, they're carrying on his philosophy.

There's no convincing them to savor their sugary treats...

Hey, Wubster! Take it easy...lick the sucker. You don't have to chomp it.
Otay...CRUNCH! [he mumbles as green drool pours from his mouth like blood from a zombie mindlessly devouring...brains]
Mini-Me! Same thing, dude...don't bite it...lick it. Enjoy it...
Okay daddy...CRUNCH...but I am enjoying it...CRUNCH CRUNCH!
What's a dad who prefers savoring to crunching to do? A wise old owl once told me, "If you can't beat 'em...CRUNCH 'em!"

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Why Are We Marching?

WE ARE ANTS!!! The one and only Ralph Covert and friends (aka Ralph's World) were back in town today, so we took the boys down to Off Broadway for the 11am show. This was our second time seeing Ralph at Off Broadway(SheWhoDoesn'tYetLikeAmplifiedMusic stayed at home with grandma this time...she enjoyed the last one in utero) and fourth time total for Mini-Me, Rach and I. I'm pretty partial to the concerts at Blueberry Hill's Duck Room, but today was a rockin' (if not entirely raucous) good time:
  • We talked to Ralph before the show...well, I talked, the boys played shy and Mini-Me waited until we walked away to say, "Daddy, I wanted to tell him about my [umm, excuse me, son...that's MINE] electric guitar."
  • Both boys danced, eventually...The Wubster mainly in Rach's arms.
  • We were reminded Mini-Me loves attention (this is the kid who's worn Spider-Man, Batman, and Superman costumes to Busch Stadium), but pretends like he doesn't: "Daddy, I don't want to dance...nobody else is....Daddy, why's [the lead guitarist] keep looking at me when I dance?"
  • Mini-Me fell in love with Maris, a girl who got on stage and told a joke (Knock Knock! Who's there? StinkyPinkyUnderwear!)...what's not to love!
  • The Wubster fell in love with the water cooler and little cups at the back of the venue.
  • Mini-Me participated in a 'caterpillar dance line,' but was upset he was behind a random boy and not Maris.
  • I barely hesitated to jump on stage with the band again for 'Abby's Alphabet Soup', but this time The Wubster whined until he got to join me, which made for more technically-challenged letter formations.
  • When Mini-Me made it on stage for the last two songs, he summoned his inner wall flower and hid motionless behind the bass player (you can see the guy looking at him in the picture above).
It was certainly more fun than our first show at Off Broadway when the loud music scared The Wubster and Mini-Me hunkered himself down in my lap with a scowl on his face and refused to dance. If you notice Ralph's coming to your neck of the woods, we highly recommend checking him out...kids or not!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

What d'ya wanna do for dinner?

It should be such a simple question, but around these parts we make it so complex.

I don't know...whadda you want?
I don't know...how about ___________?
No...not ___________.
Okay...how about __________?
Ummm...nooo, not __________.
There's always ____ ___________.
We still have leftover ____ __________ in the fridge.
I guess..._________ it is!

Tonight we got a case of the 'what-the-hell-were-we-thinkings' and went to dinner at a local Mexican cantina. We wouldn't normally have acted so irrationally, but we needed to use a soon-to-expire gift certificate from last Christmas. Somehow, in the midst of the decision-making process and the excitement over actually knowing where the gift certificate was, we forgot about the impact three kids under the age of four can have on dining out.

Amazingly, the boys behaved themselves. The Wubster kept busy dipping tortilla chips into salsa, taking bites, screaming, drinking water, and reaching for more. Mini-Me sat slyly swiping sips of his mom's strawberry daquiri (virgin...natch). SheWhoShallRuletheRoost noticed there were no tantrums to watch and an uneventful dinner out might be unfolding before her, so she decided to throw her own.

After an hour of switching off eating, feeding, swaying and shushing, Rach and I packed up our meals, jacketed the kids, and reminded each other that the leftover _____ ________ in the fridge would have been fine.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Think Fast!

I've been grading essays furiously (and by furiously I don't mean fast...I mean angrily. I'm angry that I've procrastinated enough the past few weeks that I'm grading most of my Friday night away instead of doing something cool like dishes...or cleaning up toys...or changing the cat litter...you know, awesome weekend man stuff) for the past few hours and I stopped long enough to realize that I'd almost run out of time to get my 11-minute post done for the day.

Whew...close call!

The only problem is that the synapses of my overtired brain are barely firing and I don't know what to write about for the next few minutes...

The Wubster and I played catch the past two nights before bed. The kid can toss a ball around for quarter-hours at a time! Not only is his focus on one activity impressive, but the kid can catch and throw way better than Mini-Me and almost as well as SheWhoReallyCan'tThrowButIFeltTheNeedToNameDrop.

Mini-Me's certainly improved his throwing skills since the beginning of summer when he wore his left-handed glove on his right hand and consistently stepped left, threw left, but he's still lacking in the hand-eye coordination needed for catching. The Wubster, though...he gets it. He uses his body, his hands, his head...whatever it takes to get the ball. And don't even try to sit down to play catch with the Wubster...

But, Wubster, if I kneel down I'm on your level...
Don't you want...
But this way I can...
At this point, I'd wager that he'll be more athletic than Mini-Me. He might also end up being a drill sergeant...he's so motivating!

Don't worry, though, kind reader(s)...Mini-Me will still play sports. He'll just excel in wearing the uniforms. They'll be perfect...complete with all the proper belts, capes, and helmets that a uniform should have. And they'll stay nice and clean during games because he'll put another set of clothes on top of them.

Why are you wearing two pairs of pants?
Well you see, daddy...these are my Batman pants...and these are my Bruce Wayne pants...

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Perceived Notions

It was a beautiful fall day here in our corner of the Midwest. Once we arrived home after school, there was just enough daylight left to take the Wubster out back to swing.

Neither one of us wore a jacket as the balmy, southern wind caressed our skin and surrounded us with the smells of fallen leaves and what may be the final mowings of the year. We played and laughed and soaked up every peaceful, fleeting moment of the autumnal glow.

It's supposed to get much colder tomorrow night...change is inevitable, but it's not just a change of temperature that's coming, it's a change of perspective.

A day like today, warm and inviting, felt downright chilly a couple of months ago and if it were to arrive in the middle of winter, we'd be sweating with joy. As we grow accustomed to each season, our perceptions of temperatures change.

Similar to the way 75 degrees feels different as our bodies adjust to different seasons, our Noisy Little Adventures have felt more like Nightmarish Little Adventures the past couple of evenings.

It seems we've been infected by a raging case of 'The Ferocious Fours' and in the midst of flare ups, it definitely feels like we'll never again see our sweet, polite Mini-Me who listens to his parents.

This fear of 'The Fours' is all a matter of perspective, though. It feels like endless frustration now, but we made it through 'The Terrible Twos' when it felt Mini-Me would never listen to us again and we survived 'The Tyrannical Threes' when it felt like Mini-Me would never listen to us again, so we'll...oh, crap.

This isn't going to end, is it?

I better get my winter coat.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Athletic Support

Since he turned four, Mini-Me's tried T-ball, basketball, and soccer. In signing him up for these introductory sessions all we wanted was for him to see if he liked one better than another.

Some sample Noisy Little Sports Talks:

Hey, buddy...you wanna play T-Ball?
Yeah! I wanna hit home runs. Will there be fireworks?
Ummm...no...I don't think so.
But you can still try to hit home runs!
Well...I don't know.

[Day two of T-ball]
I don't like T-ball!!! I don't wanna go!!! I wanna play superheroes!!!

[Several weeks pass]
Hey, buddy...you wanna play basketball or soccer?
Yeah! I wanna play basketball AND soccer!
Do you want to play indoor soccer or outdoor soccer?
I wanna play indoor soccer...and indoor basketball, too!

[Day two of basketball]
I don't like basketball!!! I don't wanna go!!! I wanna play Batman!!!

[Day six of basketball]
What was that girl's name again?
Oh...Ameeelia...when can I play basketball again? What was her name again?
Oh, yeah...Ammmeeeeliaaa. I like basketball, daddy.

The only sport he hasn't yet told us he doesn't like is soccer. We were impressed. We thought he'd found his athletic niche. We were wrong.

Turns out, Mini-Me's true measure of joy in a sport isn't the homeruns.
It isn't the fireworks.
It isn't the slam dunks.
It isn't the female teammates.

It's the uniform.

Soccer has shin guards and tall socks, but in Mini-Me's world, soccer has Batman armor and...thigh highs?

Yeah...thigh highs. The kid spent 90% of tonight's practice pulling his soccer socks up past his knees.

If dribbling the ball caused his socks to creep below his knees, he stopped to adjust.

If passing the ball to his teammate resulted in socks below knee level, he stopped to adjust.

If standing still, waiting for further instructions didn't impact sock levels, he stopped to adjust.

Does Victoria's Secret sponsor little league teams?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Funnies Thing Happened on the Way to this Post

Since I've been blogging again this month, I've also been catching up on my RSS feeds and reading hundreds of posts ranging from fellow dad bloggers to healthy cooking blogs to awesome author blogs. One of the blogs I follow is Backpacking Dad, whose November posts have been labeled NaBloPoMo. So, I look it up and it turns out, my idea to write a blog post every day this month instead of writing a novel isn't an original idea. Who knew!?! I guess I should've checked into that first.

Anywho, as I was reading [okay, skimming at times] the dozens of blog posts I've let fester for the past couple of months, I was doing so on my iPod touch. I swiped through post after post and started thinking about how convenient it is not to have to turn pages, especially newspaper pages that often bend and fold and tear the wrong way, especially if it's really windy in your living room.

While I don't miss the sensation of reading a crinkling newspaper with ink-stained fingers (apologies to crazybastard66...I still love the articles--if that's any consolation) I worry that Mini-Me, the Wubster, and SheForWhomItsRidiculousIHaven'tComeUpWithAName will miss them.

Mini-Me and I were reading a library book the other night in which the main character reads the funnies while eating breakfast. Growing up, I read the funnies while eating breakfast. I loved Calvin and Hobbes, Bloom County, Fox Trot, Family Circus (only when one of the kids was blaming that ghost, NotMe, for breaking a lamp or when Billy traipsed all over the place), and so many more. I still get a sick feeling in my gut when I think about those moments when I discovered Prince Valiant was the only comic left on the page to read.

We don't subscribe to the paper and I doubt this blog post will make us change that just so my kids can stick silly putty on Beetle Bailey and Garfield. I know there are experiences my parents had as kids that I didn't. I'm no worse off for that...am I? My kids will survive a Funnies-less life, right?

Other things my kids may never know:a land line, a record player, a TV show you can't pause. They may never learn to memorize the phone numbers of their friends and family...heck, I've only got four or five rattling around in my brain these days (Mom, dad, sis...sorry, but yours didn't make that list...how sad is that!?!) Should I go above and beyond as a father to fill these gaps, or is it time to move on?

We'll figure it out as time and technology march on. Maybe there'll be an iPad app that'll teach them about our antiquities. In the meantime, you can rest comfortably tonight knowing that I've not completely turned my back on the wonders of yesteryear. Thanks to the awesomeness that is Hub, Mini-Me knows all about Adam West as Batman.


Monday, November 8, 2010

After the Laughter

Nothing beats the sound of deep, hearty belly laughs from your kids...especially when they come three milliseconds after the shallow, grating devil-howls of a mega-tantrum.

Today we were blessed with multiple chances to experience both.

This evening we jumped from a guffaw-filled game of slam-then-pound-the-pantry-door to a tear-filled game of slam-then-pound-whoever-has-the-'bat phone'.

A bit later we had what might go down in the Guinness Record Book as the funniest game of catch ever [based solely on The Wubster's uncontrollable chuckling every time he chucked the ball], which was quickly followed by what might go down in the Guinness Record Book as most shrieks of malcontent during a game of 'put-on-some-underwear-nobody-wants-to-see-your-private-sector-anymore' [based solely on Mini-Me flopping around the house...not THAT Mini-Me, thank you]

Raising kids is wild...no wonder so many children are raised by wolves...who else can handle the quick mood changes.

This morning, Mini-Me threw the tantrum-to-establish-far-worse-tantrums as Rach was trying to get him off to school. He kicked, screamed, and had to be carried shoe-less and coat-free to the car. Once Rach secured the beast inside his steel cage, he proceeded to thrash about, gnawing at the leather upholstery and foaming at the mouth until, at one point, he ended up in only his underwear [You're noticing a pattern, aren't you].

He screamed and pouted, lashing out with "I don't like you"s and "You make me SO mad"s until, about a block from school, a meek, sweet, polite voice wafted from the back seat...

"Mommy, can we go to IGA and get doughnuts, please?"

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Now that's just inappropriate!

Shhhh...Wubster! When we're hiding we have to be quiet!
Beeee kiet!
Yeah...quiet. Hush...he's coming
[uncontrollable giggling]
Daddy?!? Beee kiet!

I can maintain a steely resolve with the best of 'em if the stars align, but, typically, I'm more likely to laugh in situations where laughter isn't appropriate. Not that I'm rude and randomly laugh at funerals or in line at the DMV, but I can recall a couple classes, a staff meeting or two, one last-date make-out session, and many a game of hide-n-seek that've lost their mojo because of my giggling.

As a parent attempting to discipline the hijinks of two young boys, I'm discovering plenty of new situations where controlling my laughter would be smart.

Calming your son during his night terrors?
Not giggle time.

Comforting your screaming son during an ear infection?
Not giggle time.

Explaining to your son that we don't kick the dogs?
Not giggle time.

Telling your son to tell your wife her new haircut looks great?
Not giggle time.

Picking your sleeping son up to move him to his bed and having him roll over and fart in your face?
Not giggle time [until the boy's in bed and you're out of the room]

Also, I know 'poopy' is not the adjective we'd like the Wubster to use with reckless abandon...

Hi poopy Poppy!
Hi poopy puppy!
Hi poopy daddy!
Knock Knock...Who's there?...Poopy!

...but sometimes he's adorable enough that it's definitely giggle time.

And as much as I despise Mini-Me's inability to sit still at the dinner table, he'll occasionally make a comment or face that sends me into a fit of napkin-covered giggles.

Tonight I was forced to walk the Wubster to time-out while stifling smiles after he brained Mini-Me with a hit so big I expect he'll get a letter from Roger Goodell and the league later this week.

Mini-Me had been 'shooting' the Wubster for twenty-minutes or so and, each time, the Wubster would collapse to the floor grunting. I have no idea where or when he picked that up, but it was AWESOME!

Of course, big bro conveniently refused to take a fall any time the Wubster 'shot' him, so when the Wubster threw part of his gun point-blank at Mini-Me's noggin, I giggled at the resounding thud and look of shocked dismay.

And then I giggled some more.

Eventually I remembered the appropriate behavior and giggle-consoled while checking to make sure Mini-Me was okay.

I also giggle-explained to the Wubster that throwing toys at his brother's head was giggle-frowned upon.

There may not be hope for me.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Imagine That!

It's been a tough couple of weeks around the Noisy Little Adventures household for those of us who have fond memories of sleep.

SheWhoShallSoonBeNamed's sleep pattern has been off and The Wubster's been waking up screaming uncontrollably about three hours after bedtime. SWSSBN's wakefulness is expected; she's nearly six-months-old and still figuring things out. The Wubster, though, has had us concerned.

So far we've chalked his issues up to either his stuffy nose, drainage cough, or frustration after becoming tangled in the sheets. It could also be the chili-cheese burrito he ate for Fourth Meal.

In my frustration that I can't stop this behavior, I've gone so far as to research sleep apnea and night terrors, especially as they might relate to his coarctation. As of yet there are no clear answers and if it continues, of course, we'll look into consulting our pediatrician.

Last night, as he sat bolt upright in bed and forced the covers off only to scream to be covered up and then thrash around agitatedly when I did, I went into interrogation mode:

Is it your tummy?
Tummy? (In case he wasn't sure the first time)
Do you need to throw up?
Are you thirsty?
Do you want ice? (The kid LOVES ice)
Is something in the room?

I said it jokingly and at wits end. His answer was, of course, "Noooo!", but my mind started working. I have an overactive imagination at times, and once I made the comment, visions of Paranormal Activity danced in my head. What was lurking in the shadows and disrupting my poor Wubster's sleep?

I've always been that way. I enjoy a good scary movie, but afterwards I can't shake the uncomfortable feelings that something's out there. When I was eight or twelve-years-old (quite possibly twenty-two), I used to lie in bed at night and drum or scratch my fingers on the wall as I was trying to fall asleep (Sorry mom and dad if you could hear that). I would do it for a while before thinking to myself, "Oh no! That's the signal for [insert hell-demon's name here] to come and attack! Well...it is if I do it five more times." I would then proceed to tap or scratch four more times. Poor [insert hell-demon's name here] never got a chance to munch on my soul...HA, stupid [insert hell-demon's name here]!

Ummm...the Wubster's screaming again. This is the fourth time so far tonight. I better go calm him down since, as we all know, screaming five times is the signal for...

Friday, November 5, 2010

Don't Do Me Like That

Yesterday I told a tale of paper and eyes and assumed that I'd told part two, The Bink Fairy, in a previous blog. Seems I didn't, and, as I'd like to appease you, loyal reader, here's what happened next.

Rach had planned on running some errands, so she was going to get the Wubster in bed and take off. After the eye incident she was thinking about sticking around so I didn't have to deal with my paper cut AND Mini-Me.

I had plans of my own.

In my pain-induced haste, I decided that I was ready for Mini-Me to give up his bink that particular night. It had NOTHING to do with me exacting revenge for him dragging the 11" edge of a piece of computer paper across my eyeball.

What do you mean you don't believe me?

I'd mentioned wanting to take Mini-Me to Build-A-Bear so that he could put the bink inside a bear and then still "have it", but Rach held firm to the idea that, in a midnight rage, he would rip the stuffed animal apart to get at the bink. From what I know of him now...Mini-Me certainly could have done that.

After little debate, I conceded to her idea to cut a bit of the tip of the bink, and continue doing so over the course of several evenings until the bink lost its magic (aka suction) and the kiddo no longer wanted it. She said it would work, so I went for it. In fact, I didn't even call her in for a consult...

As I completed my surgically precise cut, as close to the tip as I could, the bink ripped open like Jaws, devouring all hope that this plan would succeed.

Still, I proceeded back to Mini-Me's room and nonchalantly handed him the bink. He popped it in his mouth and we plopped into bed to read stories.

"Daddy!" He pulled the bink from his mouth, cocked his head to the side, and stared quizzically. "My bink is broken!"

I looked up at Rach, whose head was also cocked quizzically to the side as Mini-Me's tears flowed, bottom lip quivered, and she decided to go ahead and take care of those errands.

"Uh...see ya! Good luck with that!"
"Well, buddy...it, uh...must be because you're too big for the bink now. You're so strong that you broke it."
"Waaaaaahhhhh!!! My bink!!!!!"
"It just means..."
"Hey...buddy...it just..."
"You're a big boy now. You don't need a bink."
Text message from Rach: Don't you DARE give him another bink...finish what you started, dumba$$ (Technically not accurate as my memory of Rachel's input on this is fuzzy, but it's close.)
"Oh! Uh, Mini-Me! This is exciting! I almost forgot!"
"This means the Bink Fairy will show up tonight!"
"The who?"
"The Bink Fairy!"
"What's the Bink Fairy?"
"She comes at night when little boys and girls have grown too big for their binks and she replaces them with treats. You just have to put the bink under your pillow and go to sleep. When you wake up there will be a surprise for you!"

I'd never seen the kid move so fast as he did in that moment. All crying stopped, the bink flew under the pillow, the kid went right to sleep, and I scoured the house for gifts to put under his pillow, finally settling on a chocolate chip cookie and a Matchbox car. He flipped out the next morning and devoured the cookie before coming to tell us that the Bink Fairy had arrived. The following evening I left for volleyball and to avoid any possible relapses, Rach made sure Mini-Me knew that the Bink Fairy always returns to check up on the children and make sure they didn't start using a bink again and he hasn't used a bink since.

See! That was easy. I knew what I was doing all along!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I jammed my right middle finger tonight at volleyball on an over-pass that I tried to block the other team from pounding on us. Turns out the other team pounded the ball straight down on my finger. I shook off the pain and played through, and after two wins and a couple decent hits and blocks I hardly even noticed it anymore.

Sitting in front of the computer, preparing for tonight's 11-minute adventure with an ice pack on my finger after finally popping the thing back into 'proper' place, I got to thinking about pain.

Some of the funniest moments on any funniest home video show or YouTube always end up with a kid inflicting pain on an unsuspecting parent. The penultimate being the crotch shot, of course. So, the pain in my finger and the fond memories of sitting with my family in the early 90s laughing at other people's pain got me thinking about moments when my kids have inflicted pain on me. So far we've blocked most crotch shots.

What I still can't seem to block, though, are the chin shots Mini-Me and the Wubster keep giving me as I'm standing over them, helping them get dressed. They have a knack for raring up at just the right moment so the crown of their head meets my chin with a resounding thud.

While cartoon birds circle my head I swear I can hear them saying, "Ya know, pops, it hurts me more than it hurts you!" I also swear I should've learned by now not to stand over them to help them get dressed. I'll blame that recurring mistake on the numerous chincussions they're giving me.

The other memory that comes back happened just over two years ago this past Sunday. Mini-Me was two and the Wubster was a few months old, and we had all gone over to our neighbors to help them carve their gigantic pumpkins. Mini-Me could care less and spent most of the time coloring at the kids' art desk. The Wubster could care less, too, but I still think he might have ended up inside one of the pumpkins for a photo op.

When it was time to go, I scooped Mini-Me into my arms and he simultaneously whipped around to show me the picture he had drawn. In what was probably actually less than a nano-second, time crawled by as I felt every inch of that piece of paper cross the bridge of my nose, pass between my left eye lids, and scrape across my eye ball. Have you ever had a paper cut? Okay, well, then...have you ever had a paper cut...ON...YOUR...EYE!!!

Time sped back up as I almost dropped the little bugger to the floor and reached for my eye. That was some good pain...definitely wouldn't make Bob Saget's Top Ten, but I'm okay with that...I believe you can read about what happened next with the Bink Fairy in a previous blog. If not, that'll be a story for another 11 minutes.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Don't stop, thinking about tomorrow...

Don't stop, it'll soon be here.
It'll be, better than before.
Yesterday's gone, yesterday's gone...

Despite what Fleetwood Mac keeps telling me, I feel the need to spend some time looking back to some significant events I've yet to write about.

There was the trip to Chicago on Easter weekend with the boys that proved to be an eventful reminder of why we won't be travelling by plane as a whole family for a while.

And that's not just because the boys were a handful. That was to be expected. They had fun. We had fun. They threw tantrums. We wished we could still get away with throwing public tantrums.

The main reason travel will prove more challenging is because shortly after that trip we welcomed a baby girl into our family. A baby girl who's actually crying right now...I'll be right back.

Done...and you barely even missed me.

So this little girl entered our lives back in May and we all adore her. She's got an infectious smile, the boys dote on her every chance they get. The Wubster wants to show her every toy he has, constantly watches for an opportunity to give her back a dropped bink or toy, and pats her on the head incessently.

Mini-Me, for some reason, even if he's in mid tantrum or playfully screaching like a wild warthog in the throes of death (which he does more often then we'd hoped), can always make her smile. And not just little smirks, but ginormous, gummy grins. It's adorable...so adorable it can actually make a tantrum cute. I can't believe I just said that.

The only problem about this little girl is she doesn't have a name yet. Well, she has a real name...just not a blog name.

What shall I call her?

It may take another 11 minutes to decide.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Election Day Reflection

This morning I took Mini-Me to breakfast on the way to preschool. I didn't have school due to Election Day, so I finally made good on a promise from last week when we ran out of time to take him for breakfast prior to his field trip to the Pumpkin Patch. We 'twisted his arm' and he accepted a Starbuck's chocolate chip cookie instead that morning, but I still felt a bit guilty...sure the chocolate chip cookie was the size of his head and probably quite delectable, but I doubt it compared to sitting down to breakfast with his parents...

Today we stopped in at Lady Di's diner, a local institution right across the street from St. Charles High that's packed on the weekends when we drive by, and yet, we always drive by.

Mini-Me and I stepped through the door and veered right into the empty 'no smoking section'. All the excitement was to the left as a dozen or so regulars chatted about the election, suicide, stolen cars, and broken hearts. I wondered if I'd need to have Mini-Me put on his ear muffs since little prevented the adult topics from wafting over with the clouds of smoke.

The waitress eyed us suspiciously when she realized we were there, but warmed up quickly, helping me corral Mini-Me's juicy sneeze and supervise the necessary hand washing. We learned she used to live across the street and that her roommate drives "the school bus parked right over there." She shared her favorite menu items with us...well, me...Mini-Me already voted for chocolate chip pancakes and was mesmerized by the comings and goings of the high school students who didn't have the day off. Eventually, we were left to our breakfast and the continuation of a conversation started while trick-or-treating: Daddy, why do some trees lose their leaves?

When Mini-Me'd finally polished off his pancakes and had a satisfactory understanding of deciduous vs. evergreen trees, it was time to go. I pulled out my credit card to pay the bill. It's what I do. It always works. Even at Steak-N-Shake these days. I never thought it wouldn't, but it didn't work at Lady Di's. They're not with these fast-paced times. I was nervous, embarassed, panicky.

"Ummm...I only have $6...can I..."
"Sure, don't worry about it..."
"No, really...take this...I'll be back..."
"That's fine...no, keep it...don't worry about it."

I took Mini-Me to preschool, voted, hit the ATM, drove back to Lady Di's, and left $20 to cover our $14 bill.

"Thank you for trusting me."
"Oh...it's what we do."

I hope one day when Mini-Me takes his kid to breakfast he discovers a little place where the old-school values are the best item on the menu.

Monday, November 1, 2010

The Challenge Begins

The timer is set. I'm off to the races. This is NaNoWriMo if you didn't already know and if you didn't already know, then you probably need to know that's National Novel Writing Month. Before you get too excited, I'm not going to write a novel this month. I am, however, going to get back into the habit of writing.

Since our noisy little adventures prohibit the time I can contribute to tackling a full novel, I've decided to instead tackle an 11-minute writing challenge. I'm going to write for 11 minutes each day throughout the month of November.

Sound good?

Don't answer.

In these 11-minute chunks I'll write about the noisy little adventures that have been festering in the recesses of my brain since May...and I'll keep up-to-date on our recent noise, too.

The clock's ticking. Enough with the set-up, let's do this:

Yesterday, the Wubster 'got' Halloween.

Everything clicked into place: ring doorbell, say 'Twick ooo' tweeeet,' give puppy dog eyes, get gobs of candy, say 'tank ooooo!', move to next house and repeat.

Unfortunately, the third stop was a t-o-t smorgasbord where the kids got to take a piece of candy from multiple families' bowls. That changed the game and Wubster got a bit too confident for the rest of the night, often grabbing for the M&Ms and Hershey Bars instead of waiting for fate to dish out penny candy, Laffy Taffy, or Hubba Bubba. Yes, literally, fate...tall guy, dark robe, hood, scythe...what? That was death. Umm...Wubster...Maybe we shouldn't eat that piece...

At one point his two-year-old hands wrapped around four full-size Snickers bars. It was impressive. I was proud. I was hopeful. She noticed. I made him put them back. I'm still sad I didn't switch costumes with the boys and go back, but then what would I have been teaching them? That dad looks silly squeezed into a size 4T Green Lantern costume?

Midway through the night the Wubster's pumpkin weighed at least five pounds and he wasn't going to release his kung-fu grip on it. For a kid who prefers fruit and veggies to candy, he was territorial with his haul! Don't mess with a dog while it's eating...and don't mess with the Wubster on Halloween!

Lest I forget, Mini-me had fun, too. He was just thankful he got to go trick-or-treating at all after the reenactment of The Exorcist he put on after not taking a nap.

Now I just need to get home to finish 'checking for saftey hazards.' Funny how all the Reese's PB cups had something wrong with them. What's that Rach? So did the Snickers? That's a shame...

Side note: I haven't figured out my rules on editing post 11-minutes. I'll try to avoid glaring grammatical issues, but we'll see what else happens.