Interview with Baba

One of the major focusses of this blog is to talk about how I want to be a great dad, even with everything else going on in my life. I decided to interview my kids on the subject. I asked the questions, and wrote their answers just how they spoke.

What are some things dads can do to be better dads?

Lunch Bucket: Be gentle to Rosie (Rosie’s a dog who’s visiting for awhile), and don’t be frustrated, and that won’t hurt their kids ears. And help their kids and teach them so much of the gospel.

Tootles: Better dads are good.

Me: Anything else?

Tootles: Nope.

What is your favorite thing to do with your dad?

Squeaker: (smiles)

Tootles: The pirates song question. I talked about that. Be nice, and fight with the pirate song question.

Lunch Bucket: Play games – good games that people don’t shoot.

Me: Anything else?

Tootles: Be gentle with Rosie with Dad.

Tell me a story from your family history – or something about your ancestors.

Lunch Bucket: I don’t know one.

Tootles: A story about Great Grandma Hathaway, and they go to the Family history house.

Me: What happens?

Tootles: They get treats at the Family Histories class.

What would you like your dad to do for you?

Tootles: All the family toys and all the family slides, and all the family clouds.

LB: Help me pick up the toys. And help our mothers to do laundry.

. . .

I’m not sure I like where this is going… she’s been talking to her mom too much. I better stop now before she mentions dishes.

Sure beats P90X

Every time my extended family starts getting into something, I start taking interest in it, too. For example, a couple years ago my brother started a blog, and before long, we all jumped on the bandwagon. Singing was the same way. My dad started taking singing lessons years ago, and we all started singing around the house. Soon we were all singing in talent shows and anywhere we could.

Now it’s exercise. Everyone’s got a different kind, but we’re all exercising.

But I’m not sure most people understand mine.

Of course, if I wasn’t doing it, I’m sure I wouldn’t take it seriously either. Come to think of it, I don’t take it very serious now – one things for sure, it’s a good work out.

So what’s my exercise?

Line dancing! That’s right – the Boot Scootin’ Boogie, Electric Slide, Macarena – you name it! Remember the good old days when it was actually kind of cool, say in jr. high, for example, to know all the moves when Cotton-Eyed Joe comes on? And remember how there were always those dorky kids that could never seem to get the moves down before the song was over? Yeah, see that was me.

No longer.

Now, I’m like king of the… well… living room floor. I can flawlessly bust out the Tush Push, Macarena (we found a Spanish only version of the song), Achy-Breaky Heart, Celtic Slide, Electric Slide, Boot Scoot, Charleston, Cotton-Eyed Joe, Slappin’ Leather, and the newest addition, the Heian Shodan – which, I should add, is not actually a line dance, but a martial art exercise that works great with “Everybody was Kung-Fu Fighting.” (I saw a random video of some guys doing it at a wedding dance, and knew I had to learn it for that very purpose) And those don’t include our original choreographed line dance for Foot Loose, and the improvised dances we do with The River Sings (Enya) and Fireflies. Actually, Jenni and I have been doing it together, and learning and coming up with dances together. With Fireflies, we tear up grocery bags into big long streamers and dance around swinging them everywhere trying to keep them from touching the ground. With the Enya one, we do a simple running around dance that’s simple enough for the kids to do with us.

My favorite, and the one that’s a horribly painful workout is the Charleston – though I’m not sure our Charleston is the real Charleston, since it doesn’t look like the one in the Youtube videos. Someone suggested it might be the Lindy Hop, but those videos looked as different as the Charleston, so I don’t know what our dance really is.

Anyway, I never realized how incredibly FUN line dances are! I always enjoyed them as a teenager, but I didn’t know how to do them. Of course, they didn’t have Youtube to teach you back then. Now you can learn aaaaannnnyyything on Youtube. Plus you can find all the tunes on Playlist.com.

So if you ever drive by our place on a random evening, and the lights are on, listen carefully, you might hear, “Heeeey, Macarena!”

Three Year Old Scriptorian

When we read scriptures as a family, our kids like to read, too, but of course none are old enough to read alone, so when they want to be the reader, Jenni or I will read a few words to them, let them repeat them, and we go back and forth until the verse is read.

We were just about to get started today, and Jenni said, “Tootles, would you like to read?”

“Yeah!” he shouted,  “And it came to pass…”

Thank Heaven for My Manly Bassness

I just had the awesomest phone call I think I’ve ever got – other than the telemarketer calls, anyway.
I picked up the phone and said, “Hello?”

“Hi is your husband there?”

“Uhhhh…”

“Oh, I’m sorry! Now I can tell! Sorry about that, ha, ha!”

“That’s okay, ha, ha!”

“Anyway, is your dad there?”

Momentary pause while I try to comprehend what’s going on…

“Uh, sure. Can I ask who’s calling.” (in case it’s a telemarketer)

“Yeah, this is Jane Doe (name substituted, obviously)”

“Sure, one second.”

Held the phone away to laugh as quietly as I could. Then cough a couple times to clear my throat, and then in my best manly bass voice, “Hello?”

“Hi! This is Jane Doe, I just wanted to thank you for…”

And from there on out, it was a normal call – other than my manly bassness. But that call just made my day! Best thing that’s happened to me in a long time! Hahahaha!

The Grand Spam Award!

As I’ve mentioned before, I get a lot of spam comments on this blog, and instead of spamming them, I’ve decided to simply break their links and respond to them. (which is a good heads up, too. If I ever respond to your comments in a bizarre or senseless way, it means I mistook your comment for spam – I try to be polite and encourage comments, so don’t hold back!).

Anyway, some of these are better than others, and I have such a great time responding that I decided that my favorite spam comments would get an prize: The Grand Spam Award.

The Grand Spam Award for October goes to…

Wait for it… wait for it…

Orchard Bank!

Okay, so I got a very special message recently from the pre-qualifing, risk-free, fast and foaming Orchard Bank. Okay, so I added the foaming part – but not without excuse. Here’s the comment:


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Thanks, Orchard Bank. I’m glad that you will be retained throughout the day.

I can only assume that your message is being written in one of those codes where you just need to skip every few words in order for it to make sense. If so, I think I understand the interpretation.

I do have a question, though. What is a shut friend? Is that a friend who doesn’t talk, or a friend who has been shut into something – such as an old refrigerator? Contextually speaking, I’m assuming the latter, since you speak of searching (for him/her?) for some time. But then you speak of obtaining people, as if collecting them. Perhaps, then, it’s not an old refrigerator, but a large human aquarium. Yes, that makes sense. That would mean that you searched diligently and found a friend to shut into the aquarium. It would take a lot of gumption to pull that off.

Then you blog about your little human aquarium neighborhood.

Then you have someone review the exhibit, like you said, perhaps on their own blog.

I had no idea Orchard Bank sponsored human aquariums. At first I didn’t realize that’s what you were talking about, but after a careful reading of your comment, it’s quite clear. You search out and collect friends who are writers with bad credit scores or publishers who move a lot and shut them in a giant aquarium to exhibit. Then you blog about it all. Indeed, it would take a lot of gumption to pull that off.

Unfortunately, I don’t have such an aquarium, so sending me contacts won’t do much good. If you did send them, I’d just let them go.

– The Good Evaluate

Macaroni Bandaid

When it comes to kid injuries, Band-Aids can fix anything. If only they weren’t so dang expensive. Tootles had been having a crash boom bang day by dinnertime already tonight when he pinched his finger between his chair and the table. The wails were followed by blubbering begs for that traditional toddler cure-all. There was no blood at all, and if we gave Tootles a Band-Aid even half as often as he asked for one, I’d need a second job just to pay for them all.

So I said, “Hey, Tootles, I know what you need!”

He paused his wails long enough to see what I had in mind.

I pulled a spaghetti noodle out of the pot and said, “A macaroni band-aid!”

He shook his head. “No. I want a Bam-baid!”

“This is a Band-Aid!” I said, “It’s a macaroni Band-Aid. Don’t you want it for your finger?”

He shook his head.

“Alright,” I said, “I’ll just give it to Squeaker then.” Then I held the noodle out to nine-month-old Squeaker, who’s flailing hands caught it mid-swing and mashed it to her mouth before Tootles had a chance to protest.

There were a few silent seconds (other than the sound of vigorous Squeaker slurps), and then another scream from Tootles. “I want it! I want it!”

Now, of course I wasn’t about to take macaroni from a baby, but I did use the daddy slight-of-hand trick that involved taking another noodle from the pot and making a motion as if taking the noodle from Squeaker. It almost backfired when Squeaker was also momentarily fooled by the trick, but finding that her noodle was still hanging safely from her mouth, she commenced slurping her prize. Then I coiled the “recovered” noodle around Tootles’ sore finger.

By the end of dinner, the Band-Aid had been devoured and the soreness had been forgotten.

I think this opens a whole new world for toddler Band-Aid treatment.