May 30, 2009

Retirement Options

Dear Swee’Pea and TheMonk,

You might not be aware of this right now, but we’re in a recession. The economy has taken a dive and families all over the country have taken a hit in the wallet. We’re no different. Our house is worth much, much less than when we bought it and retirement funds have been slashed as well.

As I have been eying our options, I have come to the conclusion that you two are the single biggest factor in how your mother and I live our golden years. No pressure but every life decision you make will directly impact the quality of life we will have. In case you needed some clarification on how this works, I have taken the liberty of creating some scenarios for you so that you can better understand the connection between your mother and father’s happiness and your own future.

Married vs. Single
If you stay single I upgrade to a BMW (and save a little “just in case” there’s a future wedding)
If you decide to elope, I upgrade to a porsche within the week.
If, however, you have a real wedding, I downgrade to a unicycle bought off Craigslist from an unemployed circus clown.

Prestigious University vs. School of Hard Knocks
If you don’t go to college, your mother and I take your college fund and travel the French Riviera for weeks on end dining on escargot, caviar and lobster.
If, however, you do go to college, we travel as far as the local Taco Bell, dining on 7-layer burritos before rushing back to the house in gastrointestinal distress while arguing who gets to use the “good” bathroom.
Of course, if you don’t go to college you’ll have other worries – like where you’ll live.

Fame & Fortune vs. Do-Gooder
If you become famous for something other than appearing naked in a magazine, leading to untold riches, your parents will be moving to a Hawaiian estate overlooking the ocean. You will pay for it. It’s in the contract you signed when you were three. I know it’s in crayon but it’s still enforceable in a court of law.
If, however, you follow your old man into the non-profit world, your parents will be renting out your old rooms to some meth-smoking college students who steal our identity and spend your inheritance on pay-per-view porn and prostitutes.

Near vs. Far
If you marry your high school sweetheart, live nearby and come visit us periodically, you can make sure we’re okay on a regular basis and we’ll be able to live in peace knowing loved ones will be there for us in our times of need.
If, however, you find love, move away, have kids and never come back except for the odd holiday or high school reunion, one day you will realize you haven’t heard from us in a while and authorities will subsequently find our mummified bodies. I will be sitting in front of the TV, remote in had, with Food Network still on. Your mother will be found staring forlornly at the phone that never, ever rang.

I’m still in the process of creating Plan B for retirement. So far I have come up with a handful of ideas but they all include webcams and farm animals and I don’t think your mother is going to sign off on any of these ideas. So, as you see, your decisions are what really will make or break the latter years of our lives.

Choose wisely.

May 23, 2009

29 more shopping days…

As a blogger, you get a lot of PR emails from people asking you write about their stuff on your blog. This past Mother’s Day, for example, I got 37 emails touting all kinds of great Mother’s Day gift ideas.

As of today I have received 5 Father’s Day emails.

I’m not bitter though… Okay, Screw that. I AM bitter. What the hell, people?! Why don’t Dads get some love for being a parent the way a mom does? And, yes, I know that even today more moms take on a greater role in parenting but times are changing and if more men were recognized for the role they play in parenting their children, they would, I bet, be inclined to do even more.

So, I’m going to do my part. I’m going to suggest a few things that men would like from their significant others when it comes to recognizing their role in parenting their children. Some are not surprising, some are cliche, one I was paid to recommend. Read on for more

1) Sex. Lots of it. Let’s face it. We are what we are. And while we may be tempted by snazzy electronics or a good bottle of booze, what we really want for Father’s Day is our significant other laying on the bed wearing nothing but a big red ribbon. Added bonus? In times of economic hardship, it’s practically free. You could even lose the ribbon if you want to save a few bucks. We won’t mind.

2) Did I mention sex? I did? Hmmm, ok, this is harder than I thought. How about chocolate and flowers? Us men nowadays are perfectly secure in our manliness so a little floral and sweet love wouldn’t be unwelcome. If you’re nice, he might even share some of the chocolates with you.

3) Anything with the word “Flat Screen” is always a winner.

4) Power tools. Even if your husband can’t spell screw driver (heh. heh. I said “screw”), he’ll love any tool that makes lots of noise and destroys things easily.

5) Lingerie. Of course, he won’t be the one wearing the lingerie… (Or maybe he will. Hey, what you do in the privacy of your own home is up to you. I won’t judge.)

6) ATH-ANC3 QuietPoint® active noise-cancelling in-ear headphones. I was sent these earphones to review and I was pleasantly surprised. First, they come in a cool case that also is perfect to put my iPod nano in. Second, they not only deliver great sound, but they actually do prevent you from hearing your wife nag you about projects around the house just about anything when you are wearing them. I even mowed the lawn with these things on and couldn’t hear the lawn mower. I might have even put them in when a couple of kids in my house the neighborhood were screaming their bloody heads off.

7) Finally, I have saved the best gift for last. Sex. You can’t go wrong with an oldie but a goodie. What? Why are you looking at me like that?

Now go make that dad in your life a very happy man!

May 16, 2009

Riddle me this…

Lately, this parenting thing has raised more questions than answers. So many questions come up every day that I thought I’d throw up a few to see if any of you might enlighten me. Or, perhaps, you have some questions of your own. Either way, leave a comment and we’ll get through this parenting thing together.

How is it that 5 minute naps in the car means your child will not fall asleep again until Letterman signs off?

Is there a limit to how many times a kid can poop in one day?

Why does your child wait until the guy with the mohawk and the tattoo of a swatsika on his forehead is standing right next to you to ask, “Daddy, why does that man look like that?!”

Why does your child’s extreme need to tell you something always coincide with your need to use the bathroom?

How can the hour before bed time seem like a year and the year between birthdays seem like an hour?

Why do the words, “Daddy, come see what I did!” send chills down my spine?

How can a child who can’t count past 13 know when she’s been short-changed in the snack department?

Why does the three-year-old get to control the remote?

Why do tantrums always seem to occur when you’re running late?

Why can’t both kids get sick at the same time?

When do kids learn to wipe their own butt?

Why don’t marker sets come with extra pink and extra blue pens?

Can ketchup be considered a vegetable?

Why don’t more foods come in the shape of a nugget?

Why don’t upscale restaurants have a Drive-Thru?

Why do the words “Be gentle with the cat” sink in just fine but the words “Don’t hit your brother,” don’t?

Why did the Thomas The Train people name a train Percy? Don’t they know how that sounds from a little boy who has trouble pronouncing his “R’s”?

When will Kelly and Handy Manny finally get it on in the back of the hardware store?

Why do kids always miss the toy the day after you throw it out?

Do kids lack the ability to recognize they’ve seen the same damn episode of [insert any children's television show here] three times in the past five days?

When will I finally get this parenting thing figured out?

May 2, 2009

Dance like nobody’s watching

If there’s one thing I want my kids to take with them into this world it’s that living life to its fullest means not caring what others think and to embrace the joy that permeates our lives on a daily basis. One way the kids have taken that to heart is through dancing. From an early age, they have danced with me and it has always been a lot of fun watching their latest moves.

With that in mind, I have been noticing that Swee’Pea and TheMonk have been getting their groove on more and more lately. It’s been so much fun watching, I decided to video their dancing (and join in a little bit, as well). Enjoy.


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