Things I've learned about being a parent, that my parents actually told me when I was a kid...

There's nothing so annoying as the smug look on someone's face when they get to say "I told you so!". Especially when it's coming from your parents. While I didn't have the "ideal" childhood, it was far from bad. I'm actually thankful for the way I was raised, because it made me very independent and aware of how the world actually is. (Seriously, thank you Mom, Dale, Dad and Jeri)

As a kid, you tend to think to yourself, "I'm never going to raise my kids like this!" or "I'm going to be friends with my kids, because I'll understand them, and not just treat them like immature little shits." We've all felt this way, that we can do better than our parents, who just weren't cool enough to understand us. But, as I enter the serious side of my adulthood, I find myself more and more tending to act just like them. And I also understand why. Children are endearing, annoying, sweet, needy, whiny and thoughtful bundles of pure, sugared energy. And in everything involving the child in my life (who we will refer to as Monkey from now on), I think back to how my parents acted, how they handled similar situations, and I'm struck by the horror of it... They were right. I do understand now that I have a child around. Even as I apologize to them for all the hell I now know I put them through, I imagine the smug expression behind their eyes... Damnit!

And now to the point of this blog. I'm going to attempt to chronicle everything I experience/learn from being a parent. I do this for several reasons; One, being able to get feed back from other parents, secondly, to share those special moments of life with a child, and most importantly, to have a god damn record of all the crap that (Monkey), and whatever fuck trophies that happen to spawn from my loins, have put me (us) through. That way, when they're old enough to be at this stage in life*, I'll print this out and hand it to them, laughing my senile old head off, and walk away.

* This is assuming that humanity has survived the coming zombie apocalypse. Face it, most of you won't, and I'm glad for that.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Kids are like wine...

Last Sunday, we dropped Monkey off to her Dads for three weeks.  This is the first time she's spent that long over there, and the longest period of time that her and Krista have been apart.  I imagine it'll be a little rough for both of them.  It doesn't bother me too much, because I grew up with this kind of arrangement, and I imagine that while my parents missed me at some point, they were glad for the break.

Anyways, the night before we dropped her off, they had a shin-dig down at Fairy Tale Town.  Fairy Tale Town (since I know you're all like, "WTF is FFT?") is a park inside a park in Sacramento, with slides and little jungle-gym set ups, all themed around different fairy-tales and Mother Goose stories.  It's actually pretty cool, well maintained, inexpensive, and you can let the kid(s) run around until they're completely drained of energy.  It is, to put in simply, fucking awesome.

So, the shin-dig.  It was called the "Mid-summers Night Dream" festival, and it was in the evening.  Fred and Brat went with us (Nancy was in Georgia), and we had a blast.  All you can eat ice cream, Wicked 'Wich sandwiches (Out-fucking-standing), a beer booth, crafts booths, and a Celtic rock band called Tempest. We walked around, ate ice cream, and listened to a truly enjoyable band.  There were people dressed up as fairies and other Renn-Faire type costumes, and the whole thing was great.

But the icing on the cake was Brat.  For whatever reason, Brat (12) has a genuine affection for Monkey (4), and of course Monkey adores Brat.  We try not to take advantage of pawning off Monkey onto Brat, and even kick her down some cash for baby-sitting.  She swears she doesn't mind it, but I am extremely grateful that she's even remotely willing to spend time with someone who is a third her age.  Definitely made our night easier.

So, after it was over, we went home. We attempted to put Monkey to bed (it was 10:30 when we got home), who suddenly had an upset stomach, which resulted in a fair bit of crying and complaining, followed by a massive shit.  And she slept happily ever-after.

But, back to the title...

Kids are like wine.  They have the potential to get better with age, but the can also turn to shit. Maybe it's all about how you handle them?

Shit, Odin! Ssshhhiiitttt....

There's few things more embarrassing than when you, as an adult, watch old family videos, and realize how absolutely retarded you were.  God knows I've had my moments (and systematically tried to destroy all evidence). But as a parent, these little nuggets are endearing memories, meant to be cherished and saved for future ammunition.

So, shortly after I got back, I got Odin back from the Devil Woman.  Odin is a (still) slightly hyperactive black Lab, and I love that dumb-ass.  He listens to me very well, Krista for the most part, and pretty much ignores Monkey.  He's never had to listen to a kid before (and maybe her voice is too high?), so he pretty much ignores her.  But, god damn, that doesn't stop her from trying.

Monkey- "Odin. Odin! ODIN! Shit! Shit, Odin! Sshhiitt... ssshhhiiittt...."

The whole time, he keeps walking around, or looking at me, with a confused look that seems to say, "What the fuck? Is that a self-squeaking toy? It's giving me a headache."

Lately, with the judicious use of treats and ice cubes, he's starting to realize that she's a mini-master of sorts, and that he should at least acknowledge her every now and then. But only if toys or treats are involved.