Little White Lies

This post is proud to be a part of Fatherhood Friday over at dad-blogs. Check ‘em out by clicking here.

I’ve had a tough run lately. It started on Sunday night when my boy, Peyton Manning, threw a crucial pick that pretty much sealed the deal for the Saints. I should have realized that the Who’s impotent halftime display was a harbinger of things to come.

...and we get on our knees and pray...the Who won't play again.

Monday and Tuesday proceeded to be such horrendous days at work that the only way they could have gotten any worse would have been if the Who had actually shown up at my office, set up shop, and proceeded to play a perpetual loop of their Super Bowl medley. (By the way, did you hear that Austin Powers called Roger Daltrey after the performance? Apparently, he wanted his outfit back. And speaking of outfits, what was up with that little Blues Brothers number that Pete Townsend was sporting? Was he supposed to be Jake or Elwood?)

At least Tuesday night went fairly well, that is until Lovie and I heard the dreaded sound of cries from the monitor on the kitchen counter long after bedtime. It was A. “Did you catch that?” asked my beautiful wife.  ”He’s calling for you.”

I was skeptical to say the least. It’s always Mommy they want, not me. But once my ear was right up to the monitor, I realized that Lovie was right. Our little guy was screaming “Dad-dy!”

So up I went to check on my monster, excited at the sure-to-come, nocturnal, father-son bonding session–almost giddy that A had requested me by name. Upon entering his room, I expected to be hailed as a super-hero, but instead, I wasn’t even acknowledged.

A

“MOMMY! MOMMY!” screamed A at the top of his lungs while pointing to his blanket which lay on the floor. It had fallen from his crib which meant that the earlier screams weren’t made by a kid longing for his “Dad-dy,” but rather by one who was jonesing for his “blank-ie.” I picked it up and handed it to him, thinking that would be that. Until A threw the blanket back down with a disapproving grunt.

“Mommy!” he demanded, none too pleased that I was the one negotiating the blanket debacle.

What I thought would be a bonding moment with my son had suddenly turned into a bad-behavior moment that rendered a punishable offense. I was obviously wrong earlier. My day had gotten worse. And it had nothing to do with the Who.

“You’re in time out for throwing your blankie,” I said sternly as I exited to the hallway. When I re-entered three minutes later, A’s cries had subsided, as had his insistence for his mommy.

“Poo-poo,” he said in a soft voice while grabbing at his bottom as I lifted him from the ground.

“Buddy, we don’t go poo-poo in our pull-up. We go poo poo in the potty like a big boy. Why didn’t you go poo-poo in the potty earlier? Hmmm?”

He answered with a blank stare before putting his tiny arms around my neck and burying his head in my shoulder. My oldest son and I remained frozen in that embrace for five wonderful minutes. When I finally changed him, I was shocked to find that he hadn’t gone to the bathroom at all.

He had told his first lie.

Children normally lie to get away with something bad, but A’s lie amounted to turning himself in for something he hadn’t even done. Why? So I’d talk about going poo-poo in the potty with him? So I’d change him even though he didn’t need changing?

As I kissed him goodnight on the nose, I stared into eyes that looked back at me with equal amounts of sleep and love until it dawned on me. Maybe, just maybe, during his time out, my little monster realized that he wanted a nocturnal, father-son bonding session. But that thanks to his poor behavior, the only thing he would receive was a post-punishment kiss as I laid him down for the night. Unless he acted fast, that is, and figured out a way to extend our time.

Some people tell little white lies, but A had just told me a timid little brown one. All so he could spend a few minutes resting his head on my shoulder. Lying to someone by saying you have a load of shit in your pants in order to draw that person closer would have never occurred to me. But then again, I don’t get stoked beyond belief every time I get to play with a zipper. Nor do I insist that all my bath towels be equipped with a hood. So who am I to judge?

Besides. It worked.

As I turned the corner on my way down the stairs, I looked out the window and was surprised to see heavy snowfall. I hadn’t realized we were expecting any. I love snow.

I smiled and continued down, suspecting that things were starting to turn around for me.

And Briggs Makes Seven

“Your dumbass dog is at it, again,” announced my pregnant wife one night early on in our marriage. Lovie was referring to my faithful chocolate lab, Briggs.

What, exactly, was Briggs doing, you ask? Slowly, steadily, and silently releasing dense clouds of noxious gas. Pockets of reprehensibility so flagrant as to even be equipped with their own (and noticeably different) barometric pressures. Tiny, malodorous weather fronts of filth which were greatly disgusting my lovely wife. I looked over at my hound only to find him sprawled out on his bed, his mouth eerily agape, snoring like a bear.

Birggs

That’s right. Briggs was sleep-farting.

And he’s got other bad habits, too. Like going certifiably ape-shit each and every time an outsider bursts our domestic bubble. A knock at the back door, the ringing of the front doorbell, or even a barely audible conversation between two women taking a leisurely neighborhood stroll is enough to send Briggs into a frenzy. A full-blown gallop ensues, throw rugs helplessly askew in his wake, Briggs sliding out of control with each and every change of direction his dash requires, eventually culminating in his breathless arrival at wherever the action is, panting with desperate impatience while shamelessly rocking a solid inch-and-a-half of pink lipstick as he awaits our visitor with… um… excitement.

As soon as said visitor enters the house, Briggs’ll make a bee-line for the toy bin and deftly snatch whatever’s on top, before galloping back to his new friend with the welcome gift he’s selected, wrapped thoughtfully in his slobber. He’ll then circle our dumbfounded (and slightly frightened) guest with speeds that conjure up images of the Tasmanian Devil until he feels it’s just the right time to engage in a little world-class crotch-sniffing.

And I haven’t even touched upon his legendary dirty-diaper escapades. Briggs makes Marley look like one of Paris Hilton’s lap dogs. So the fact that Lovie was having a hard time adjusting to him early in our marriage wasn’t surprising at all. What was surprising, however, was that not only did she eventually accept Briggs, she also ended up liking him.

Pookie and Briggs during one of his calmer moments.

Briggs’s birthday is in December, and as each holiday season approaches, Lovie and I wonder if enough dog years have passed to notice a decrease in his high energy level. This year was sure to be the one, right? After all, he’d be seven. But, if anything, his energy level was even higher thanks to our broken invisible fence. Without it, we couldn’t even let Briggs go outside to blow off some steam without fearing he’d leave our property, barge into an unsuspecting neighbor’s house, and start dry humping their four-year-old.

So his outside activities were limited to bathroom-related engagements only. At least that was the plan. The actual outcome was that Briggs made countless escapes. No fewer than eight different households came to our assistance with either a phone call alerting us of his whereabouts, or in two cases, front-door delivery.

Everyone was very nice about it, but Lovie and I were all too aware that we had likely become “those neighbors.” In our minds, three two-year olds is pretty much a good enough excuse to let anything slide a little bit. But it’s not like others realize what we’re up against. (except for one family–shout out to the Huneycutts) So I was always embarrassed whenever we got one of the dreaded phone calls and often turned to humor as a way of masking my shame.

Ring-ring.

“Hello.”

“John, it’s Anne. I think I see Briggs across the street in the Baker’s yard. He’s sniffing around their nativity scene. He’s right beside the three wise men.”

“Well, at least it’s comforting to know that he’s keeping good company, right Anne?”

We finally got the fence fixed in January. But our relentless brown hero has grown so enchanted with his neighborhood jaunts that he’s decided such strolls are easily worth the jolt of electricity he’ll endure as he hurdles through our invisible barrier to embark upon one. So we’ve been keeping him inside again, unless, of course, it’s time for him to use the bathroom. But having been burned in the past, we’re often skeptical when he whines as if he needs to go. Ever the clever hound, he’s taken to offering up undeniable proof of his plight via large piles discretely left beside the side door.

And that’s where we are right now. At just two and a half years old, all three of our little guys are going poo poo in the potty while their dog is droppin’ the deuce on the kitchen floor. I wonder if we could somehow teach Briggs how to use the toilet.

The Name Game

Lovie played the name game with the trips today. As they sat in their highchairs enjoying lunch, my lovely wife held up random articles of clothing from the pile of clean laundry she was busy folding.

“What’s this,” she asked as she held up…

Pookie pants! all three shouted in unison.

“Good. Who knows what this is?”

Daddy sock!

“Y’all are good. Okay, what about this?”

A, B shirt!

“And this?”

C big girl pants!

“And this?”

A, B big-boy pants!

“Last one,” said Lovie. “What’s this?”

per the Good Spouse Act, panties pictured above are not Lovie's. (hers are hotter. WAY hotter. CALIENTE!)

Mommy BIG BOY pants!

What? Mommy’s big boy pants?? I thought that Lovie was playing The Name Game. But according to the trips, it turns out she’s actually been playing The Crying Game all this time.

Well, I suppose it makes sense. If I truly am One of the Girls, then that would leave Lovie to wear the big boy pants in the relationship.

One of the Girls

Lovie and I ran into one of her childhood friends at a restaurant this past Sunday–a woman I’ll call Cindy. Though I don’t know her very well, I’m a big fan. So whenever I see her, I always chat her up. The handful of conversations we’ve had have all been pleasant ones, filled with rapid back-and-forths and sprinkled with clever one-liners. Our rapport is excellent.

“You’re a man of mystery,” she said to me, looking lovely in her Sunday best.

“Oh really?” I asked. “How so?”

“My mom is always asking about you. She wants to know what Lovie’s husband is all about. You know what I tell her?”

“What’s that?” I asked, preparing to greet the series of compliments that were sure to follow with the perfect mix of appreciation and modesty.

“I tell her what a girls’ guy you are.”

Record scratch.

“I’m sorry?” I said, wondering if I had misheard, or if she had actually meant ladies man or some other complimentary moniker.

“I tell her how fun you are to talk to,” she explained. “How it’s just like chatting with one of the girls.”

An awkward silence ensued.

“And that you’re, you know, a real girls’ guy.”

Once concerned Cindy’s comments would render me visibly self-smitten, I quickly downshifted into damage control, hoping only that my expression wouldn’t reveal the fact that my engine was revving with disbelief, if not disapproval.

“I would have gone with versatile,” I suggested, wondering if I had come off as rude as I had feared.

But who could have blamed me. Girls’ guy? I wonder if my camping buddies think I’m a girls’ guy. What about my bookie? Or the rough-and-tumble, blue-collar types who work at the countertop shop I co-own? Or how about Chris Chambliss, the close friend I section hike the Appalachian Trail with? During our annual, week-long trips–the ones spent trekking up and down the sides of mountains, carrying forty-pound backpacks eighteen miles a day–I wonder if he ever looks at me and thinks, you know, as much as I love hiking with Osborne, what I’d really like to do is clutch a hot cup of coffee, plop down a fluffy sofa, and watch The View with that son-of-a-bitch.

Cindy's coming over and we're gonna chat!

I have a question. Since when did being unafraid to banter back and forth with one of Lovie’s all-time faves at a cocktail party suddenly turn me into RuPaul? I’m many things. And easy to talk to is one of them. But does that really make me a candidate to tag along on a weekend trip to Atlanta for a two-day Nieman Marcus bender?

As I drove to work on Monday morning, I replayed the conversation in my head. Maybe I was wearing my sensitive panties, I thought. Perhaps I over-reacted. So I asked my co-worker and close friend Shane Rose.

“Now what did she say, again?”

“That I was a real girls’ guy.”

“Was she serious?”

“Yeah, I think.”

“Buddy,” he responded while shaking his head. “That sucks.”

So much for the sensitive-panties theory.

Next time I see Cindy at a party, I’ll remember to stay on the boys’ side of the room and talk about the stock market and auto parts while belching loudly and occasionally readjusting my gigantic package. I’ll only cross over to the girls’ side to inform Lovie that her cowboy needs a drink.

Bourbon, bitch.

Harsh? Maybe, but I have to be careful not to use too many words or else I might come off all chatty. Wouldn’t wanna give anyone the wrong idea.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I gotta go. The Bachelor just started.

Donuts With Dads

Yesterday was a big day for Pookie. Her second grade class was holding a special event–Donuts With Dads. It’s an annual thing, so I’ve known about it for a while, and I gotta say, I was more than a little curious about how it would go down. After all, her real dad lives right here in town, so his attendance was a given. But what about mine? I would have been okay if I’d been left out of the mix. Being a stepdad can be tough. And so can being a stepdaughter. Accordingly, I figured that on some level, this would be a difficult decision for her.

On Monday, Lovie broke the great news. Pookie wanted “both of her dads” to go. (Insert your California joke here.) I was obviously thrilled, but also knew that a certain degree of awkwardness would likely ensue. But as Pookie led her father and me around the classroom on the “scavenger hunt,” I was pleasantly surprised by how skillfully she was navigating the situation. It wasn’t awkward at all.

Until we went to the far wall to admire the cute drawings the class had made of their dads and I saw this soon-to-be-classic staring right back at me:

Egads! My eyes quickly scanned the entire wall until I found the drawing she had made of her biological father, and, well, it’s safe to say that I got the short end of the crayon.

Forget, for a moment, that the left side of my face is bulging out as if experiencing the gravitational pull of a large planet. And forget the fact fact, if you will, that there is a certain, though difficult-to-pinpoint, alien element to the depiction. And forget, also, the zipper on my fleece (I’m reasonably sure that’s what she was drawing) looks like Uncle Jed’s shotgun.

Take a gander at my head, more specifically my hair–and disregard the fact that I don’t have a crew cut and that my real hair is not six inches off my ears. Focus, instead at the very, very top of my hair.

There are only a handful of explanations.

  1. To enhance the aforementioned alien theme, Pookie has drawn a flying saucer which has landed on my head.
  2. I’m sporting a flesh-toned yamaka.
  3. Pookie believes that I’m actually a volcano.
  4. Pookie’s imagining that I’ve recently endured a lobotomy.
  5. The circle is actually a halo, a symbolic representation of the angelic role I’ve played in Pookie’s life.
  6. Or, most likely, that skin-toned circle that is surrounded by hair is Pookie’s artistic rendering of my bald spot.

I suppose that’s how she sees me. And I’m okay with that. Especially given the fact that her insistence that I be a part of the festivities tells me something else about how she sees me.

As her dad.

I love you, Pook.

The Bathroom Attendant

I usually get home from work at around six o’clock. And at our house, that can only mean one thing.

There’s a potty goin’ on.

For by that time, our triplets have finished their dinner and are required to take a turn on the potty before their bath. “You have a new and important role,” Lovie casually informed me the other night. “I’ve officially appointed you our Bathroom Attendant.”

Sounds good to me. I’ve been dealing with shit at work all day long. I guess it only makes sense that I should do the same at home.

Our potty-training initiatives have actually gone pretty well. So well that our toddlers wear their big boy and big girl pants every waking moment, only donning the diapers whenever it’s time for nite-nite. To get them to this point, we had to employ a reward system. They get one M&M whenever they go pee pee, and if they “make it happen,” they receive a cookie.

Recently, however, they discovered a pee-pee loophole. Since said discovery, whenever even a drop of urine hits their potty, they feel entitled to some candy. We reluctantly rewarded them with an M&M the first few times until we finally realized that they were doing nothing more than intentionally time-releasing microscopic amounts of pee every five minutes just so they could quadruple their chocolate intake. Our trio, it seemed, were turning into little sugar junkies. And speaking of junkies, if the trend continued, we feared their candy-coated teeth would eventually look like they belonged to two-year-old meth addicts.

Even worse than the candy pandering were the fights that ensued over who got the honor of flushing. Initially, the two non-flushers were content with the default honor of being an integral part of the pee-pee/poo-poo send-off committee. While the flusher flushed, they would energetically bid their bodily waste a cheery farewell.

“Bye bye, pee pee! Bye bye, poo poo!”

But when the fighting for the handle began, we decided to let each of them flush their own. Until we started adding up our water bill, that is, which prompted us to once again combine all of their efforts into the big potty and return to the single-flush policy. The resulting mad dashes to the magic handle resembled three hardcore gambling addicts wrestling for the lever of the lone, unoccupied slot machine at the Bellagio.

Funny. I thought their game was craps.

Whenever they jockey for pole position next to the handle, one of them often brushes against the open seat, inadvertently sending it hurtling downward toward the porcelain with alarming velocity, like a guillotine screeching down from above. We feared it was only a matter of time before one of the boys got beheaded. (sorry)

When they weren’t fighting over flushing, they were busy opening and shutting the bathroom door. It was actually quite cute. For the first four thousand times. But not only did the slamming grow old, so, too, did the shouting matches that went down by the bathroom door.

Fighting over flushing? Shouting over slamming? Such affairs were so foreign to us, that we decided it was time to implement a concept of foreign affairs. That’s right. We busted out our own Open Door Policy. All doors remain open. Period. It doesn’t matter who’s “making it happen.” And Lovie has designated me to enforce this policy and restore order to their bathroom endeavors. I am now the keeper of the door, the judge of which efforts warrant rewards, as well as the designated flusher.

So every day when I return from work, I take my seat on top of the closed toilet lid while my little guys hunker down on the three plastic potties immediately in front of me. They contort their tiny bodies while pushing for all they’re worth til their innocent faces turn red and the veins in their neck stand at attention, all in the name of frosted animal cookies.

Yep. That qualifies. Would you like a red or green M&M?

I offer words of encouragement during their valiant efforts and they respond with quizzical expressions, much like the ones I used to give those clowns who offered me a stick of gum or imitation Drakkar cologne as I washed my hands in the bathroom of a downtown Seattle hot spot.

I’m re-learning something I first learned when I was a twenty-something club-hopper. Being a Bathroom Attendant is a thankless job.

Only now that I’m forty, I’m wise enough to know that I’m the luckiest man in the world to have it. In fact, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Guaranteed Winners

Click below for my five-star, can’t-miss, NFL playoff locks. Okay, fine. They’re not mine. The triplets picked ‘em. But the triplets are mine, so that kinda makes their picks mine, too, doesn’t it?

That faint smell in the air? Straight cash, homey.

Trip Picks

I’m in a sports slump. It’s that simple. Why? Because most of the big-time games I wanna watch go down on weekend afternoons. And around my house, that’s a serious conflict of interest. As a result, the only blitzes I’m privy to are the ones executed by our tiny threesome as they bull-rush our domestic quarterback (Lovie), while this lineman helplessly tries to prevent them from knocking her out of the game. Instead of rooting for my favorite team to get a first down, I’m left assisting Lovie until we get a third down. In bed that is. And by that time, most of the action is over.

When Lovie and I discovered that she was pregnant with triplets, I (jokingly) told her that if they were all girls, Briggs (my faithful hound) and I were packin’ up and leaving. After all, the last thing we needed was the estrogen fest that would ensue with a household of five females compared to just one (human) male. So you can imagine my relief when we welcomed two boys and one girl into the world. At long last, I’d finally have some testosterone on my side.

But I soon realized that sharing a house with a mommy, a little girl, and three babies is far from a Harley Davidsion convention. Two years later, not much has changed. This past weekend was one of the biggest sporting weekends of the year, but no one that I lived with seemed to care–not even my boys. NFL playoffs? Un uh. The only thing they wanted to watch was an animated nursery rhyme. Which brings me back to the first sentence of this post. I’m in a sports slump.

On Friday night, after we got the kiddos down, Lovie, Pookie, and I watched a movie called Imagine That. A single dad (Eddie Murphy) discovers that with the help of his daughter (Yara Shahidi) and her magic blanket, he’s able to pick stocks that are destined to soar in value, thus helping him further his career in finance.

I quickly realized that Imagine That contained the elusive solution to my sports slump. You see, without my usual high dosage of sports, I’m not as well versed in the ways of football as I once was, an unfortunate fact that has led to a slump within a slump–namely that of accurately forcasting which teams will prevail each and every weekend. Thanks to Eddie Murphy, I had a feeling that was about to change. After all, if his kid could pick stocks, surely the triplets could pick winners.

So on Saturday morning, I put two stickie notes in front of A. He passed over the one that read Bengals, instead picking the one that said New York. Apparently, my little guy was down with the Jets catching three and a hook on the road against Cincy. I repeated the selection process for the three remaining NFL matchups and logged his selections before bringing B, and C into the mix. Ten minutes later, I had my plays.

A is FIRED UP about his picks.

In addition to the Jets, A also liked:

Dallas -3-1/2 over the Eagles,

Baltimore +3-1/2 over the Pats, and

Green Bay -3 over Arizona.

He was a smoking hot 3-1 for the weekend.

B flashes a confident smile before disclosing his selections.

B chose

Philly,

Cincy,

Baltimore, and

Arizona.

He wound up 2-2 and was the only one to correctly pick the Cards.

C's picture may be out of focus, but her selections were anything but.

C liked

the Jets,

Philly,

New England (she thinks Tom Brady’s hot), and

Green Bay.

She started off well, but fizzled, going 1-3 for the weekend.

I played the teams which got the majority backing from the trips (New York, Philly, Baltimore, and Green Bay). Oddly, all four were on the road, which any seasoned gamer will tell you is a Wildcard Weekend no-no. Still, I ended up 2-2. And as the old adage goes, a push is a win, right? So I was thrilled.

Only one problem.

I still didn’t get to watch.

Stay tuned for how they do throughout the playoffs.

Trips to Work

I don’t know about you, but now that the holidays are officially over, I am so ready to get back to work. Don’t get me wrong, my time off was very nice, but with Pookie out of school, and the toddler trio in full effect, I couldn’t have managed another day at home if I tried. Unless of course, the kids magically disappeared and left Lovie and me at home by ourselves.

Wait a minute. That’s really not such a bad idea. And with Pookie starting school on Monday, that leaves just the triplets we’d need to farm off. Hmm. Assuming I can find them decent-paying jobs, maybe they could be the ones to go back to work while Lovie and I enjoy a little more down time.

Of course, their employer would have to be extremely flexible. Starting with dress code. The boys are a little young to be wearing power ties, but we’ll make sure to have them in their boldest “big boy pants.” No tasteful pant suit for C, either, but her Hello Kitty bow and “big girl panties” should do the trick.

here. take these. just in case.

Assuming they get to work at eight o’clock sharp, their first stop will be the company cafeteria. No coffee and bagel, though. More like “na-nas” and “joos.” After breakfast, it’ll just about be time for them to get crackin’, but first, they’ll need to take a turn on the potty. After all, they can’t go all day in their big boy pants/big girl panties without taking a turn on the potty. All companies are already equipped with handicapped toilets. I wonder what their plastic pottie seat situation is? No biggie either way. If need be, they can always take ours.

I hope it doesn’t annoy their co-workers when they hear happy voices singing “Pee pee YAY! Pee pee YAY!” and “Bye-bye pee pee,” from the stall next to theirs. If it does, at least they can take solace knowing that such singing will be short lived. Soon there’ll be a fight over who gets to flush the toilet.

Oh. And I guess we ought to warn their boss about the post-bathroom visit. You know. The one where they stampede out of the bathroom and run (naked) all the way to his office and start bitching until they get an M&M? He’d better have some cookies on hand, too, in case they drop the deuce. It gets ugly when they’re no cookies.

By then, it’ll be close to ten—just enough time for a coupla hours of work. Of course, they’re only two, so it’ll be hard for them to stay focused, but I’m sure it’ll be fine. Unless there’s a window in the office. Because if there is one, the wee threesome will congregate there and leave smudge marks with their tiny hands while bidding a fond farewell to everything they see. At least everything they see that they know the word for.

“Bye-bye plane. Bye-Bye truck. Bye-bye birdie. Bye-bye doggie. Bye-bye car.”

Sure hope their co-workers get used to all the bye-byes. On second thought, I guess it doesn’t matter—sadly, they’ll have no choice in the matter. Each and every time one of them walks by the triplets’ office, be it to get some water, or to make a photo-copy, or perhaps just to embark on a bathroom break of their own, the loud and gleeful bye-byes will begin yet again, this time directed at them. Too bad they won’t know that explaining you’re not actually leaving won’t remedy the situation. Oh well. They’ll find out soon enough.

After a quick lunch, it’ll be nap time. I wonder what the company policy on naps is. From my limited experience in corporate America, I seem to remember that sleeping on the job is usually frowned upon. Maybe the trips can sneak a nap in during a meeting or something. Surely someone will be giving a bullshit, power-point presentation. Those typically go down in a dark room.

Uh oh. That means there’ll be a fight about who gets to flip out the lights.

Maybe this isn’t such a great idea after all. They’re an adorable lot, but they sure require tons of work. And attention. And patience. It’s probably best if they stay at home.

Which brings me back to my initial point. l don’t know about you, but now that the holidays are officially over, I am so ready to get back to work.

The Good, the Bad, and the Snuggie

Okay. So the Christmas season of 2009 is officially in the books. Here’s a little recap of how the holiday went down in our neck of the woods via something I like to call The Good, the Bad, and the Snuggie.

It’s important to note that potty training is alive and well in our house. In fact, B is doing so well that he went all “next level” on us. One night in early December he commandeered C’s pink car, you know, a little toddler toy that wee ones roll around on? With a seat that lifts up so the wee ones can put their blankies inside? Well this wee one decided to put his wee-wee inside.

What? I see you lift up the lid all the time. Hypocrite.

Shortly thereafter, we got a bit of snow, a rare occurence in our fair city these days. Sadly, Pookie was with her dad, but A, B, and C got into the spirit and even took time to pose next to a snowman.

B, C, and A ain't skeert of a little cold.

C, B, A, and Frosty.

Then the holiday season got amped up a bit when Lovie, Pookie, and I went ice skating at an outside rink on Friday the 11th. Look how pretty Pookie and Lovie are.

Lovie and Pookie fixin' to get their skate on.

When I get done skating with her, I think I'll go on a quick tri-state crime spree.

Pookie, graceful as always.

That Sunday, Lovie, Pookie, and C went to a cookie-swap, which left the boys and me to hang out during the afternoon. Excited to have some quality male bonding time, I anxiously went upstairs just past four to wake them from their nap, but but before I took even a single step into their room, I knew something was drastically awry. Long story short, one of the boys had experienced the blow out of the century. The pictural evidence of said blow out is truly remarkable, but Lovie insisted that I leave it out. (I could, however, be coaxed into inserting it with a well phrased request or two…) We had a good afternoon, but from that point until Christmas, it was official. A stomach bug had infiltrated our clan and would remain throughout the holidays, eventually affecting nearly everyone.

Still, by Christmas, we had rebounded. Despite a couple of us waking up looking pretty rough…

B, halway undone on Christmas morning, and somehow the possessor of a gender-inappropriate passi.

A, our little monster, on Christmas morning.

…all in all we felt much better and were ready to enjoy the day. Pookie didn’t get back from her dad’s until 2:00, so after breakfast we played in the garage for a bit before going for a ride in the car.

B and A, feeling better, and excited for Pookie to get back home.

Little Sissy waiting for her turn in the Barbie jeep. Wait, does that mean my BOYS are playing in the Barbie jeep? Fellas...

Finally, it was time for us all to gather round the tree. Lovie’s mom and her fiance’ came over, and together, the eight of us enjoyed a wonderful little slice of Christmas.

There are enough lights on this tree to illuminate a small village. A small, dark village.

Pookie loved her green fleece.

B plays with the cars that go in the big truck.

A waits for a turn with the cars.

Sweet Pea, C, plays with the latch board. Yes. That's a wipe on her head. No. We don't know why, either.

The day after Christmas was another big one as that night, Lovie’s mom and her fiance’ got married. Pookie and her cousin would walk her down the aisle. Pook looked beautiful and so did her grandmom. A, B, and C looked great, too, but we were in such a hurry that, unfortunately, we didn’t get pictures. Aside from their baptism, the trips had never been to such a ceremony. We were more than a little nervous about how they would do. Thankfully they were great, especially given the little stomach bug that was still alive and well.

Until the very end, that is.

As the moment was drawing nigh when the happy couple would be pronounced man and wife, an unmistakable low rumble escaped one of the trios’ backsides. Followed by two more just like it. Followed by a sweet, little high-pitched voice singing “Toot, toot, toot. Toot, toot, toot.”

Though not exactly according to script, the minor transgression did nothing but add (a pretty good amount of) laughter to the happy occasion and with its conclusion, the gauntlet of the holidays had passed. Not only did we survive, we triumped. But that’s not to say we didn’t come out unscathed. For on Sunday the 27th, the stomach bug reared its ugly head again on a morning car ride.

Oh boy.

Two hours later, feeling very queazy, I limped back to our bedroom. It would be twenty hours before I re-emerged and during that time, I did everything imaginable except eat. It’s Monday night and I still haven’t had anything more than a handful of crackers, a chicken sandwhich, and an English muffin. But as bad as my stomach has felt during the past thirty-six hours, it could never have compared to the sinking feeling it had on Christmas when Pookie opened a gift from Santa–a gift that I can assure you I knew nothing about.

Santa? How could you?

So it’s official. I live in a house equipped with a Snuggie. And I’m not a hundred percent sure, but I think the fact that it’s a snuggie “for kids” makes it even worse. I looked into a couple of reputable snuggie relocation programs, but was told it wouldn’t make a difference. I’d still be considered in violation. So I’ve contacted the authorities and have made the neccessary arrangements. I’ll be meeting them on January 8th to hand in my man card. Since I’m a first-time offender, they’ve been kind enough to let me keep it through the bowl games.

Happy New Year, everyone!

Related Posts with Thumbnails