Archive for the ‘Mishaps’ Category

Random Tips for Living, Part 5

  • Parent Tip: If your child has a loose tooth, give him and his brother each sword-type objects. They will naturally start sword fighting, and inevitably a child will get hit in the face and start crying. You have a 50/50 chance of that child being the one with the loose tooth. In our case, they were foam baseball bats and yes, the loose tooth did get knocked out.
  • Church Youth Leader Tip: Don’t close your eyes during the program’s opening or closing prayers. In my case, I’m with the 3rd- through 6th-grade boys. No, as one of the leaders. If all the boys’ leaders closed their eyes during the prayer, when we opened our eyes half the boys would be gone and the other half would have each other in headlocks. Keep at least one eye open.
  • Parent Tip: Do not tickle one child when another child is throwing a ball at him. In this hypothetical example, when one child raised his arms to catch the ball, the parent allegedly tickled him, causing him to bring his arms back down to protect his armpits. The ball was then able to travel unimpeded to the child’s face, theoretically speaking.

Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to the prayer offered in this place.

2 Chronicles 7:15

Thanksgiving Recap

What did I have for Thanksgiving?


That’s all my body would take. Two of my sons and I spent Thanksgiving recovering from flu-like symptoms. As far as flu-like symptoms go, it wasn’t too bad in that in each case it lasted for about 18 hours.

From Wednesday night to Thursday afternoon, Alpha and Gamma were eating normally and everyone else was avoiding food. My wife was fine – not sick at all – but she was trying some preventive maintenance by keeping her stomach as empty as possible.

So we missed the big Thanksgiving gathering with my side of the family. We figured people would rather have us not there than have us there but get sick the next day or so.

The main downside to that whole fiasco was the rolls.

For my side of the family, there are about 30 people at Thanksgiving. We were responsible for bringing the rolls for the meal, so we allowed for about 2 rolls per person. My wife made 70 rolls on Wednesday afternoon, a mere hour or so before the first kid went down.

We didn’t go to Thanksgiving so we couldn’t take the rolls.
We couldn’t send them with anyone.
And even if we had, who would want rolls from a sick house?

So if any of you want rolls, let us know – we have a bunch in the freezer right now waiting for a good home.

in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:18

Random Tips for Living, Part 4

Parent Tip: Do not leave a toddler unattended with a banana. Or blueberries. Unless you like cleaning them out of upholstery.

Church Tip: Do not sing the hymn There’s a New Name Written Down in Glory with young boys. They tend to be competitive, so the “And it’s mine” part degrades into an argument about whose it really is.
“No, it’s mine!”
“Is not!”
“I had it first!”

Husband Tip: If you’re unloading the dishwasher and you don’t know where the item goes, it is perfectly acceptable to put it in the drying rack on the sink and move to the next item.

Parent Tip: If your pre-schooler asks for a bowl of Lucky Charms, give him only a dozen pieces at a time. He can get the next dozen pieces after he has eaten all of the current pieces. If you don’t run breakfast this way, he will have eaten a bowl of marshmallows and you will be left with a bowl of plain cereal pieces.

He who overcomes will thus be clothed in white garments; and I will not erase his name from the book of life, and I will confess his name before My Father and before His angels.

Revelation 3:5

Miss Communication

My wife and I don’t always use the same terms to mean the same things. This leads to all sorts of misunderstandings.

  • We disagree on which part of the dishwasher is the “back”.
  • We disagree on which pockets of the diaper bag are the “side” pockets.
  • Subjective terms such as “cold” also lead to confusion.

And that brings me to today’s story: my trip to the grocery store.

I like to take one of the smaller kids to the grocery store in the evening, if needed. It gives the wife a slight break in that there is one less thing she has to do.

The problem comes when she writes something that makes sense to her and it also makes sense to me, but the two senses do not match.

One particular item was a “large bag of sugar”. I look around the shelves, and I grab a large bag. It turns out that it happened to be a 10-pound bag, and the wife was expecting a 5-pound bag. I didn’t even know they made 10-pound bags, so I didn’t bother checking the label – I just tossed it in the cart and went on.

The next time I go to the store and sugar is on the list, she tries to prevent my buying a 10-pound bag of sugar so she writes “small bag of sugar”.

I look around the shelves and find a small bag. All 2 pounds of it. I get home and find out that she wanted the 5-pound bag. I didn’t even know they made 2-pound bags, and neither did she.

It is for those reasons that I call home for clarification during my grocery shopping trips. My goal is not to be the husband who can’t shop for groceries on his own, but I would rather buy the right things than attempt to bolster my pride.

For now though, I go on the easy shopping trips and my wife takes the others.

)You shall not have in your bag differing weights, a large and a small.

Deuteronomy 25:13

The Saga of the Engine Oil

My car is 10 years old now, so I need to pay more attention to maintenance items. For example, sometimes the oil gets too low between oil changes.

At a recent gas stop, I noticed that the oil was low. I keep a quart of oil in the trunk for such occasions, so I pulled that out and added it to the engine.

The only problem was that I did not have a funnel with me, so I had to aim very carefully when pouring the oil. Alas, I did not aim carefully enough – I spilled some oil on the engine cover.

Normally, I wouldn’t care about that. But the extra oil dripped off the front of the cover and landed on the front of the engine. It landed somewhere in the middle of some tubes and heat shields.

I didn’t think much about that, other than “oops”.

Then the oil started to smoke.

Some flames appeared.

Beware the Child’s T-Shirt

Our kids get piano lessons from a local lady. She’s a grandmother and a retired schoolteacher. She’ll come to your house a give lessons, for a small fee of course.

She’s very friendly and likes to hold the baby for a minute after the lessons are done.

One day Gamma happened to be in the room when the lessons concluded, and he happened to be wearing this shirt:

photo of child's shirt that says 'I get my good looks from my dad'photo of child's shirt that says 'I get my good looks from my dad'

It says “I get my good looks from my dad”. And no, I didn’t pick it out.

The piano teacher looked at the shirt, read it out loud, then looked at me and said,

“That’s because mom still has hers!”

She was laughing when she said it – with me, of course, not at me.

It was very clever, which is why I’m sharing it with you dear internet audience. So be careful what slogans your children wear – they might backfire on you.

When the Philistine looked and saw David, he disdained him; for he was but a youth, and ruddy, with a handsome appearance.

1 Samuel 17:42

Random Tips for Living, Part 3

Husband Tip:

If you find an empty container of chocolate ice cream in the bathroom trash can, do not ask any questions.

Father Tip:

If you’re teaching your young son about baseball, make sure one of the things he’s taught early on is that to tag a runner, he must be holding the ball – no throwing it at the runner to get him out. Especially if you’re the runner.

Husband Tip:

If your wife writes “LOL butter” on the grocery list, do not audibly laugh at the dairy aisle. People will stare. Instead, just grab some Land O’ Lakes and proceed to the next item.

When my steps were bathed in butter, And the rock poured out for me streams of oil!

Job 29:6