Friday, November 30, 2007

What? Santa Claus Makes Toddlers Behave And Use The Toilet…

Now that my daughter is nearing 2 1/2, Christmas in her eyes is proving to be very entertaining. The lights, the decorations, the songs, Santa Claus...
At first she was pretty freaked out about the idea of a big guy breaking into the house through the chimney, but now she’s fine with it because he brings presents. When wife sings, “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” she quickly interrupts with “no mommy, he coming to my house…to bring me PRESENTS!!!” (hooray!)

Upon seeing this supernatural influence, I saw a great opportunity to help with the potty training cause. I’ve told her Santa only brings presents on Christmas to big kids that use the potty…and guess what? Every time she sees any Santa, or any mention of him, she wants to use the potty. So far his magical powers seem to be working (hooray!)

Now I’m pushing Santa even more – like when she doesn’t want to sit down at dinner, or when she’s on the verge of a breakdown. I bend down to her level, get in real close, and say in a low serious voice, “Remember (slowly look around.) Santa ‘knows’ if you’re being bad…”
She stops and then her eyes get big (wheels turning), then looks around the area as if he’s hiding behind the sofa or in a parked car outside with binoculars.

I've created this coloring page every time I want her to use the toilet or behave:
"Santa Claus is watching" (coloring page)

I know this influence isn’t going to last forever so I’m taking full advantage... and then I’ll worry about the therapy bills later.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Just Throw Away That Leftover Turkey Already! And How I Met The Wife

I’m definitely not eating turkey for a while after eating leftovers for the last three days (I’m not sure, but is that even safe?)

Thanksgiving was enjoyable and pretty relaxed this year (no Ohio Football!) We had two Thanksgiving dinners - one with good friends (their house for lunch) and one later with my Grandfather and his lady-friend (can’t say girlfriend since she’s not even close to being a girl.) She is a very nice lady though.
We let her say a little Thanksgiving prayer since her son is a pastor up in Oregon (I’m not sure what religion it is, but while praying she spoke in a deep echoing voice…. in Latin, I think...)
Both meals were superb and my daughter was thrilled at the idea of the holiday. She was especially excited to have helped my wife make grandma's famous cranberry relish. She kept telling everybody during dinner “mommy helped me cook ” and then she would ask me for money.

Apparently we were in the minority this weekend as we managed to stay away from any malls or “Black Friday” shopping riots. The wife was tempted, but refrained.
Most of our Christmas shopping is going to be gift cards...or KFC chicken checks!
(Great, now I've made myself hungry...)

Overall it was a good weekend of sleeping, spending time with my family, and watching movies. Oh, I did get to play this game for about 24 hours straight, and Rock Band (which is freakin’ HARD - even on easy mode - that should be illegal!!!) I sure won’t be buying that game. I foresee lots of disappointed kids (and Dads) playing that on Christmas morning.

10 Years Ago...
A special thing about this weekend that I should mention – it was 10 years ago that I walked into a little shop in Paris, France and saw this stunning girl working behind the counter with a smile and laugh that lit up the room. I stood there like an idiot trying to figure out what jumbled up words in French I was going to use to talk with her. Until she started speaking English -- like a regular person!
My opening line (excitedly) “You speak normal!”
I guess it worked – because 1 ½ years later we were married, and then we had a beautiful little girl (with a smile and laugh that lights up the room…)

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I’m Thankful I’m Not In Ohio

Yes, it’s almost Thanksgiving and for me there’s a lot to be thankful for: my wife, daughter, family, friends, health, job, iPhone. But the thing I’m most thankful for is not having to spend Thankgiving with the in-laws, in Ohio, this year because the wife has MBA finals coming up.

Thank you Jesus! (Oprah, Ron L, Mel B, or whatever you believe in…)

“What’s wrong with Ohio? That’s where Wendy’s was created!!” you might ask?

Well friend, let me school you: I’m not a sports guy. Never have been, unless you count watching Baywatch or Golden Girls a sport. Unfortunately my in-laws don’t since my first introduction to them way back in ’98 when I was told to join “the men” in the TV room:

Future In-Law #1: (quick glance at me, then eyes on TV) Who’s your team?

Me: My ‘team’? (pause) That would definitely have to be the “A” Team… (big smile, ‘thumbs up’)

(TV mysteriously silenced, all eyes on me like I’m Richard Simmons holding a raw hotdog and gripping a sparkler from my butt cheeks)

(TV resumes life, all eyes on TV)

Future In-Law #2: You a “Buck”, ”Eyes” fan?

Me: Buck-eyes? What’s that?

(*gasps* even from the young children in the room -- Really, really uncomfortable LONG silence….)

Future In-Law #1 to #2: (loud whisper to the dude next to him) What’s wrong with this guy?

Every year the men watch football for around 182 hours straight. They don’t even break for the bathroom (I think they pee in their beer cans and then throw them out the window…) and the women are banished to the kitchen or the local Wal-Mart.
So I usually hang out with the kids playing video games, drawing, or having them ask their parents for money and then teaching them how to play poker.
I guess the downside is that I won’t have any extra spending cash this year.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving! And remember Canadians have one too (who knew??)

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Potty Training Idea #87: Coloring Pages That Use "The Power Of The Mind."

The way things have been going there’s no doubt in my mind that I’ll have the first Jr. high kid EVER that hasn't been potty trained.

Recently some friends gave me a dvd called “Potty Power” that did wonders for their 2.5 year-old. She watched it a few times and like magic was “instantly” using the toilet like a 67 year-old running into the house after a visit to Hometown Buffet.
The video is actually quite good. The songs are so catchy that I often find myself singing them in boring meetings at work (“no more diapers for me…yeah, yeah…”)
Unlike other potty videos, kids actually use the toilet in it - imagine that! All while singing, dancing around, yelling “Potty Power” with their arms in the air like Che Guevara revolutionaries.... it's all very exciting.
So exciting that my daughter pooped in her diaper while watching the DVD (hmmm... maybe I should move the TV into the bathroom...?)

While changing her diaper she threw her arms up in the air and yelled “POTTY POWER!!”

Do you think they would arrest me if I duct taped a potty chair to my toddler’s butt?

So now I’ve come up with another creative method – coloring pages. Because really, what toddler doesn’t like coloring pages? Only toddlers whose parents deprive them of basic necessities like clothes, a place to sleep, fried chicken and maybe air.

Here are a few coloring pages that I’ve made to reinforce the use of the potty. Feel free to use these for "the cause":

"Poop in the potty and a magical unicorn will visit" - coloring page
"Every time you poop in your pants, Elmo cries. Don't make Elmo Cry!" - coloring pageWith some duct tape and these -- this potty training business could be pretty easy. How's that for "Potty Power!"...?

Monday, November 12, 2007

Crazy People Searches And "I Pity Da' Fool Who Don't Eat Ma Fried Chicken!"

A big congratulations to the Kentucky Fried Chicken Contest winners!
It was a tough call, but just like the Highlander "in the end. there can only be one." Or in this case two.

Winner #1 was Beta Mom for her fancy writin' poem:

There once was a man from Kentucky Whose chickens were very un-lucky He made them all fatter Then fried them in batter Yessiree’ that Colonel was plucky.

And wiener #2 was Bennie from Ben & Bennie because his grandfather shot a hippie, in Kentucky, for taking his chicken wing while singing Kentucky's national anthem at The Colonel's original restaurant... in 1830 (or something like that...)

Thanks to those that particiapated and a big thanks to KFC for sending me the gift checks. As soon as I got them I ran over and tried the Popcorn chicken again (I actually have a new product suggestion/idea: Spicy Popcorn Chicken! mouth waters just thinking about that one. KFC could get the Spice Girl's to sing in the commercials "People of the world --Spice up your life.." all while dancing with a sunglass sportin' Colonel Sanders!)

Random And Bizarre Searches
That mighty powerful (and rich) Google sends some weird people my way. I occasionally like to share these searches with the public.

I crapped a pineapple - ouch!
see womans boobs at a football game - they're called "Cheerleaders"
ways to get daddy from stealing my candy - sorry kid, you'll get no sympathy from me
daddy eat as much candy as he wants - so what's the problem?
jo and blair were in love - I think Jo was in love with Blair. And Blair was in love with Mrs. Garrett
picture of gummy bear in a peaceful area - gummy bear heaven?
when did dad's start cutting the cord - when doctor's felt a need to be entertained
why do we have butt cracks - apparently to crap pineapples
how to acquire all magical powers and superhuman strength - get bitten by a spider or alien that has somehow escaped a government research laboratory. Or be a rich orphan with nothing else to do.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Colonel Sanders and Santa Claus Must Be Brothers. Or Just Angels Sent From Heaven

Today began like any other: woke up, showered, ate cold chicken out of a bucket for breakfast, got my daughter ready, sang ELO’s “Evil Woman” on the way to work -- pretty much how billions of other people’s day begins.
Except today day was different. Today I got a note from KFC (yes, “them”) complimenting me about my Colonel Sanders pumpkin and THEN sending “ME” KFC gift checks.

It may be November, but it sure feels a lot like Christmas morning.

(The remainder of this post will be in a southern accent to pay homage to Colonel Sanders, aka: the great originator of fried chicken in a bucket.)

Those who’ve been readin’ this here blog for a while know I’ve been the biggest fan of this here “Kentucky Fried Chicken” (later renamed “KFC” for the hearin’, and maybe readin’, impaired…) ever since I was a wee youngin’.
Maybe it’s because there’s somethin’ comfortin’ about fried chickin’, mashed potatoes, slaw, bisk-ets, after coming home from school, work, prison (ha, just pulling ya’ britches!)
Or maybe because I find it funny that a southern gent in a white suit, calls himself “the Colonel” and then sells fried chickin’ in a bucket. Hoot and hollerin’, side-splittin’ funny!
And the chicken ain’t bad either. Seriously, who doesn’t like deep-fried chicken? Only Satan himself. And maybe hippies. I just love the spicy kind they make -- which ironically isn’t available at all locations...(the Colonel makes me drive to Pasadena to get that special stuff. Making me risk ma’ life dodging ol’ people in their Lincoln intercontinental's and such…)

Around six moonshines ago, I wrote an open letter to the colonel (when they changed their chicken oil to non-trans fat) vowin’ I would never eat that there chickin’ again. That following week I was back again like a whiny drug-addict (sorry Waya and MetroDad…I just couldn’t get on that Popeye’s bandwagon… maybe if it came in a bucket and Mr. Popeye wore a white suit things would be different…)

CONTEST! WIN CHICKEN! (Come on, who doesn't like FREE chicken?)
And guess what the prize is? KFC chicken checks! (thanks to them colonels’ folks.) All you have to do is leave a comment with your email (so I know how to contact you if you win) and tell me a fact about Kentucky (or hippies!)

The fine print: Winners based on originality. Contest only open to US residents and maybe Canadians.
O.k., Canadians can play too (this time!!!) Sorry to my peeps in NZ, Australia, UK, and Ohio. Oh, and some weird people in Malaysia who are always searching my blog for “husbands drinking wife’s breastmilk” – those people aren't eligible for any contest (ever!)

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Halloween Night Randomness! Pet Parents, Pimps, and Christmas, Oh My…

What’s that you say? Christmas is next month… How did that happen!?

Halloween turned out to be very fun this year. I ended up carving a Chewbacca pumpkin. My daughter was practicing her “Trick or Treat” line ALL DAY and was thrilled not only because she got to dress-up like Sleeping Booty (her name for Sleeping Beauty) but those magic words MADE the neighbors give candy.
Now she thinks she can put on her costume any day and go ask them for candy.

Watching the kid growing up sappy parent moment…
There’s something to be said about once enjoying the ‘trick or treating’ ritual as a kid and now as a parent watching my own child doing it. Watching my daughter twirling in her costume, getting candy, wearing a huge glowing smile… it all just sent happy chills down my spine. And the best part: now I don’t have to do all the work getting candy! (yee-ha!)
I just read a survey that said 90% of parents steal their kids’ loot. I think the other 10% were lying about it. Come on! We all do it, right?

Pimp Chaperone? I don’t think so. And Grad School doesn’t care about kids
The wife was in class Halloween night (thank you MBA program for thinking of “the children”…) I guess I can’t complain too much about that since about 98% of grad students in her classes don’t have kids. That’s just sad.
My daughter wanted to go trick or treating with the crazy 4-year old next door and her dad (Yup, only 2 already trying to ditch dad...) But I wouldn’t let her because the dad next door was dressed as a pimp. To me it’s just wrong having 3 little girls dressed as princesses walking with a pimp chaperone.
Later he admitted that it was from the “good old days” of being a single guy and should have probably worn a different costume (really, you think?) Sometimes I feel like Dr Phil – except without the Ferrari.

A note to parents who leave an unattended bowl of candy on their porch
Are you crazy? Some neighbors down the street left an unattended candy bowl out and I saw 3 (around 9 or 10-years old) boys dump the ENTIRE bowl into their pillowcases. I ran over telling them they’re not suppose to do that –- there’s something called the “honor system” where you take one and leave the rest for others to enjoy.

They all looked at me like I was Abraham Lincoln smoking a crackpipe.

One of the boys started putting some candy back, but he was cherry-picking through his bag leaving behind BRACH’s, Tootise Rolls and other random hard candy (or “old people candy”) that kids these days hate. The others thought it was a good idea and followed.

I guess that’ll keep other kids from dumping the bowl in their bags.

Later, I had visions in my head of some old people trick or treating and dumping the entire bowl in their bags and then running home to watch Jeopardy.

“Tick’ Or Treat?” - Whatchoutalkin’ bout Willis!
I think “Pet Parents” (the term I use for adults with no kids that treat dogs and cats like human children) need to be stopped before the world explodes from their stupidity.
I get a knock at the door and there’s this couple (mid-thirties-ish?) holding their little ugly rat-dog in a hot dog costume.
They said “Tick or Treat” and then held up a bag with HUGE smiles.

Are you kidding me?

I gave them a BRACH’s, shut the door, and then continued watching Jeopardy.