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Archive for the ‘Father’s Day’ Category

One evening, shortly after my last blog post was announced via social media, my dear husband Ned was cruising through his nightly ritual on his smartphone: looking at crap on the Internet. He came across my post and said, “Oh, is this your blog?”

*sigh* yes, Ned that is my blog. The one you’ve only read once before.

And he proceeded to read it. Halfway though, he asked me, “Who is ‘Max’?”

*sigh sigh* I explained to him that was his son’s name-change-to-protect-the-innocent. I then pointed out that I was “Molly” and he was “Ned.”

“Ned? Ned!” he protested. “You named me Ned?” I laughed. He glowered and said, “At the very least you could have named me something that fits. Like Thor or Gunnar.”

Seriously? This from He Who Never Reads My Writing? (Really, I’m okay with that part. It’s a long-standing tradition that none of my family really has an awareness of my published life. It is best, I have learned, that these people just stay out of it.)

So to honor Ned/Thor/Gunnar, and to celebrate Father’s Day, I give you my top ten things that fathers do. (Because, let’s face it, much of what they do falls into the pet peeve category for most moms; and well, we have girlfriends for that sort of talk.)

1.  The Shock of Poop. Ned/Thor/Gunnar gets the bedtime detail, just based on scheduling. I get the majority of diapers and getting Max up and putting him down, so nighttime is it for NTG. I’m usually in the laundry room while the poopy diaper is being ensconced, which is almost always followed by, “Oh dear GOD!” or “Jesus, what is your mother feeding you?” I laugh and laugh. Laugh harder when I then hear, “Max, no! Don’t put your hand there!” Hehehehehe.

One time when Max was just a few months old, we were traveling with him over the holidays. The moment we got to our seats on the plane, I could tell he’d pooped. NTG said he’d take him, and headed off to the airplane bathroom. He got back to our seats, handed me the baby and said, “Woah. That was a five-sheeter.”

2.  It’s Hard Enough Remembering to Feed the Cat. This sounds terrible, I know, but it is an universal dad thing. I have mom friends that leave their husbands detailed lists of what to feed the child, or just make everything themselves. Whenever I am out on the weekend—errands, grocery store, whatever—I will get the call from NTG, or I’ll check in with him, and we have the following conversation:

NTG: So um, I think maybe I should feed him lunch.

Me: Yes, yes. It is 12:30. Lunch is a good idea.

NTG: What do you want me to give him?

Me: *insert boring list of toddler lunch food items*

NTG: Okay. Sounds good, baby, see you later.

I then come home to find out my son ate nuts on the couch with NTG. Or Cheese-Its in the playroom. Or NTG saying, “He ate a bunch of those cheese puffs, but that was about it.”

3.  That’s Mr. Daddy. One of my most favorite things that NTG does: he teaches our son. Tools, putting together shelves, helping set up the big-boy bed. NTG is patiently narrating the entire way, letting Max participate. Laughing every time Max imitates the sound of the drill. It’s awesome.

4.  What Routine? Out to lunch on a Saturday, and Max had inhaled a buttered muffin, a bowl of grapes and a few tablespoons of ketchup via a few dozen French fries. We paid the bill, and were getting ready to go. I reached into the diaper bag and pulled out a wipe, and handed it to Ned/Thor/Gunnar. He looked at the wipe, and then at me, and asked, “What am I doing with this?”

I gave him a blank stare. He said, “Oh …” and proceeded to wipe up our son. I could not stop laughing at him.

5.  Fashion Sense Isn’t Needed at Night. In the morning, I’ll look at my son, who is wearing his “I’m Crabby” pj top with his construction vehicle pj bottoms, and ask NTG: How did this happen? He almost always responds with, “What? I just reach in and grab.” Clearly.

6.  Daddies Hang Out Better Than Anyone. See the image below for evidence. When this is just NTG messing with his smartphone for a half-hour at a time, it makes me crazy. But add the kiddo into the mix, and it’s cute. They’re like peas and carrots, those two.

MC Apr 13 012

7.  Brute Strength. This is helpful because sometimes kids just want to hug their mommies, or bite them, or hit them or do whatever they want (not what the parent wants), ’cause moms don’t retaliate. Also, some things are just heavy. Having dad around is invaluable, especially in the following situations:

  • Removing a screaming, kicking toddler from a room.
  • Transferring a screaming, kicking toddler from the park to a car seat.
  • Quickly moving a 30-pound kid up a flight of stairs.
  • Pack-muling it through an airport with a stroller, a carryon and a car seat in a protective cover strapped to his back.
  • Holding an infant still for first-time bloodwork, while Mom paces the room. (Dad may cry through this process. It’s allowed.)

8.  Teaching Inappropriate Things. My father was good at this. (He was notorious for teaching babies how to make raspberries.) Sofar, NTG has taught Max how to sing the Hofbräuhaus drinking song: “eins, zwei, g’suffa” (one, two, drink). I ignorantly thought this meant, “one, two, three.” No, now Max sings it, and clinks your glass three times with his sippy cup before he chugs his milk. Max also quite enjoys chanting: “Zicke, zacke, zicke, zacke, hoi, hoi, hoi!”

Other offensives include: “hubba, hubba, hubba” and “Oh, sexy girlfriend!” From Parenthood, and Sixteen Candles, respectively. At least he’s not taught him, “No more yanky my wanky.” Goodness.

9.  They Love Kid Food. Sometimes I think that Ned/Thor/Gunnar prefers veggie chips and peanut butter toast to the coconut-crusted chicken with mango salsa dinners I prepare for him. Truly, between NTG and Max, I need to buy peanut butter, cheese crackers and Oreos in bulk. Whenever Max is done eating, his father isn’t far behind, snatching up grilled cheese and declaring, “This is delicious!”

10.  They’re Human Jungle Gyms. This also includes scary monsters, hide-and-seek, and wrestling. All code for: Daddies take the abuse. Just this morning I awoke to NTG and Max goofing around in Max’s bedroom. Ned/Thor/Gunnar is lying on the floor, his legs bent and feet firmly planted on the carpet, while Max proceeds to climb up and slide down his legs like NTG is his own personal playset.

I am told this kind of activity comes with a certain risk to man parts, but today, as I watch my boys, I notice NTG is uncomfortably resting his head in his hands. I ask, “Would you like a pillow?” He says yes, and I promptly give him the one off of Max’s big boy bed. NTG happily rests his head for about 30 seconds, until Max suddenly stops playing, stands up, walks over to his father, and yanks the pillow out from under NTG’s head. Max then runs into the other room, and throws the pillow into it, taking it as far away from his daddy as he can. Like, “Bam! That’s where that shit goes!”

I laughed so hard, I cried.

So there you go, NTG. All of the daddy-like things we love about you. Happy Father’s Day.

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