Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Play at home day

Looks like today is going to be one of those days where we are at home. All. Day. Long.

This morning I remembered that one of The Boss Lady's car tires looked a little low, so she took my car to work.

The kids really wanted to stay home and play Wild Kids. Also known as Little People. Which we have lots of, just not as many as Oda Mae and Oda Daddy. But I wanted to go to to the dinosaur museum.

Anyways, we drug the toys into the living room and I was about to start getting the kids dressed, so that we could go to the dino bone museum when I remembered my lost keys. I have not seen my keys to the wife's car in several weeks. Have you?

Anyways, I don't feel like driving downtown in the rain in the truck with no wipers or side windows. And I haven't felt like looking for my keys in a month, so why should I start now?

So it looks like we are home for the day. At least we did not waste a lot of time getting dressed. Yeah for playing little people in our pajamas! I wonder if we can stay like this until The Boss Lady gets home.

Dream a little dream

Reading Angel's post from this morning reminded me of a recurring dream I had for several months, when I was just starting college.

I was working in a retail warehouse club. Yes, the one where I ran over my own foot with a forklift. Anyways, the woman who was in charge of payroll was the nicest person in the whole place. She was often reminding new people about how to use the time clocks, but she was never mean or rude about it.

On to the dream...

I started dreaming almost every night that Payroll Lady was chasing me around the store, with my time card in her hand. She would drag me off of the forklift and up to the front of the store, to show me how to punch in and out, properly.

As the dream would go on, Payroll Lady would get more and more pissed off at me, chasing me further into the store and dragging my time card-abusing butt back to the front of the store. On her last trip of the night, Payroll Lady would grab my shirt and start punching the time clock with the tail of my shirt, instead of a time card. The whole time she was screaming "This is the right way to clock in. You see NOW?"

After a couple of weeks of this, I actually told Payroll Lady about my dream. And she just winked at me, laughed and walked away. Which in then just scared me back into another few months of the time clock dream.

I never did figure out the dream. But with all of my various jobs I've had since, I managed to avoid time clocks in all but one other place. My So Called Aunt was in charge of the time cards, though. And no one is afraid of her...

The rest of the story

So Sunday, while I was teaching the Sunday School class, I froze up. Lost my train of thought and could not remember the rest of the Bible verse I was trying to recite with the class.

The problem verse? Uh, John 3:16. A real brain buster for someone who has been in Sunday School more weeks than not. Not to say I was paying attention all those years...

Yep. The verse that every football fan and pre-schooler in a church mother's-day-out knows, left me completely and utterly stumped. Deer in the headlights style.

It took me a few seconds to remember the ending. Luckily, the class members have heard John 3:16 more times than me, so they were able to jump in and bail me out.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Monday? But what happened to Saturday?

Here we go again. We are off on another of our weekly adventures. But it has to be better than the weekend. I'll give a quick summary.

Kids. Coughing. Night time. Not sleeping. PINK EYE! Eye drops 3 times a day.

That about wraps it up.

Oh yeah, I ended up teaching the Sunday school class by myself yesterday, instead of helping out while someone else led the lesson. So you might want to say a quick prayer for those nine poor souls.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Half-assing a half an implosion on a half a building

Intel Inside. That's what happened. A quality operating system just foiled an implosion downtown. The target.

The Intel Building was imploded this morning to make way for a new federal courthouse. Actually, Intel never finished the building and the shell has just been sitting since 2001. And they planned to blow it up this morning, but someone forgot to tell the building. It did not fall completely.

The video. Even more videos here.

We did not drive down there, but from the television coverage the whole thing seems to be a miserable failure. Now I am glad we stayed home.

According to this article on our daily newspaper website, statesman.com, the implosion went just as planned, but it sure does not look like it did.

Friday, February 23, 2007

A moment of silence, please

Today is the last day of Girl Scout cookie sales around here.

Now lets all be sad, and maybe a little skinnier, together.

Total cookie purchase this year, unknown. I kind of went on a bender for about a week.

Estimated cookie purchase this year, 13 boxes. But I might make 15 if the local dealer still has the good ones in stock this evening.

The first greens of spring

I have not yet posted pictures of the garden, because it isn't very attractive or exciting right now. Yeah, it IS a lot like me... But this morning I walked outside and saw the first sprout from the greens and peas that the kids planted last Sunday afternoon.

So I guess garden season is officially ON!

The picture is a little blurry, but you get the idea, right?

And it isn't a freshly dug grave. No matter what the neighbors say my garden looks like. I build up raised beds to give the plants a chance in our rocky soil.

Get off the computer and go outside

The weather has been great this week, so we have been outside a lot lately. Gotta play out there as much as we can before everything starts blooming and allergy season starts up again.

Of course, The Talker and I are still playing Lego Star Wars, but yesterday we added a freebie Lego program to our addictions. Don't want to risk sunburn, you know. Over at LegoFactory.com, we found a download for the Lego Digital Designer. This thing is a cool 3-D Lego set. You can pick the blocks you build with, rotate the angle you view your project with and modify your creation endlessly.

And evidently, if you design a cool project, you can order a kit containing the blocks to build your project for real.

Currently we are working on a truck and a model of our house. It is not a quick process though, at least not with a 5 year old helping. We are about an hour into this truck.

OK, we were able to finish quicker than I thought. Another 15 minutes and we were done.

And when I sent the model over to Lego.com, I found that I could purchase my own kit for this model for the low low price of $12.99 plus shipping and handling.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Man, I am goooooooooood lookin'

The Talker made some drawings of me during the last couple of weeks. Yesterday My Best Investments posted a pic of himself, drawn by his 3 year old. And I was reminded to post my portraits.

What about the rest of you? Got a good picture of yourself, drawn by one of the kids? Post 'em up.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I better stick with elementary stuff for a while

The other night we were all in the car and we were talking about where The Boss Lady and I went to college. And The Princess tells me "We won't go to college."

Which gets my best multi-purpose dad response, "Wanna bet?"

Then her final retort, which still has me scratching my head, "But Daddy, we aren't puppies."

Monday, February 19, 2007

These boots were worth the wait

Every Texan kid needs boots. The Talker has been through several pair. Sadly, The Princess had to wait until this weekend for her first pair.

But I promised some pictures of the pink boots and here they are. Hot pink and as awesome as you would expect!

So now that we are all dressed, we are off to a birthday party. Man, I love weekday morning birthday parties. Of course, those pink boots might steal all the attention from the birthday girl.

Tag, I'm it.

So Angel and Rick have both tagged me.Between them and their associate taggers, everyone I know seems to have been hit already. So the madness ends here. Unless you want to consider yourself tagged, then carry on...

I am sure that I have revealed waaaaaaaaaaay too much already, but everyone seems to want to know more about The Stick Man, so here goes.

#1. I graduated from college without ANY credits in math on my transcript. Zip, nada, none. Which also describes my math abilities. My degree plan required college algebra, but I found a loophole!

My parents paid for college algebra at least 6 times, but I dropped it before flunking. So a junior level Statistics of Psychology class seemed like a good option. No one knew what was going on in there, so we all rode the Bell Curve right to graduation.

#e. I did not learn to swim until I was in college. Still, I once worked as a lifeguard. I ended up with the job by default, when a summer camp lifeguard quit at the last minute, about 5 months after finishing my non-swimmers PE class.

#47. My first car was a 1969 and a 1/2 VW Bug. What made it a half year model? The gas gauge design and some other things that I have forgotten now. But it was damned important when I was in High School. Someday I will have another Bug.

#32. As of yesterday, I am a Sunday School teacher. Our church needed some help in a class for adults who have developmental disabilities, so I got tagged there, too. Guess it is time to clean up the language...

Surely that is five. Close enough for a guy who can't even do college math, right? No? Well how about this, then:

#753. If you want to name a murderer, give him my middle name. No, I haven't made the list. And I am not planning on making it. It would look really bad for a Sunday School teacher to be on that list. And no, The Talker does not carry on the Wayne tradition. His middle named came right out of classic American literature. No crazy murderers there.

Back in the comments after my post about nicknames, my mom stole some good thunder for this post. Yes, I did drink gasoline once. I also once ran over my own foot with a forklift and I got beat up by a seven year old. When I was 25. But I revealed most of those last time.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Lost it.

I had a post ready to go. Our network glitched and now it is gone. So here is the short version:

  • The veggie garden got lots of attention this weekend. We are ready for warmer weather so we can grow a bunch of stuff that I won't eat! It is now fenced in to keep dogs and kids out and to keep tomatoes from escaping before The Boss Lady gets to eat them.
  • The Talker is in video game heaven when we picked up Lego Star Wars, The Video Game. I did not know they made it for PC, so we are a little late to the party, but after playing for a couple of hours, the boy and I have a new favorite game!
  • And it is sad but true, our daughter almost made it to her third birthday without owning a pair of cowboy boots. Don't worry, we corrected that major oversight this weekend. Our little Texan is now flaunting her bright pink cowboy boots. Complete with zip up sides so that a 3 year old can cowboy up on her own.
You really can't appreciate the boots until you see them in person, but I'll post some pics on Monday. Might even throw in a couple of pictures of the garden, too.

Now go away. I only get to play Star Wars when The Talker is asleep. So I gotta get my Jedi on.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Moving Day!

Today is supposed to be cleaning day. I have put off all of the routine cleaning chores until today, so that we will have the weekend to enjoy a nice, clean house. Also, I am prepping our house for a friend of The Talker's to come over and play this afternoon. Don't want one of The Boss Lady's co-workers to see how we REALLY live or her son might never be allowed back.

But I just had a couple of realizations: There is not enough time to get this dump into presentable shape. Guess I should have started on Thursday. And since I procrastinated so well, I have to settle with our usual cleaning ritual, also known as moving all of the junk to the master bedroom to hide it from public view.

The robot is finishing vacuuming, the big spots on the floor have been mopped up, and the kids rooms are reasonably straight. So bring on the playmates and co-workers. Just don't let them anywhere near our bedroom, OK?

Scenes from the Museum

The pictures may not be as interesting as the ones The Talker shot, but here are a few pics I took with The Boss Lady's new camera.

Head first into the art!

Two meatballs in the "spaghetti".

As close to a good picture as I'll get.

Looking out over the front entrance

And a video of the kids playing in the "spaghetti sculpture", out front. At the end The Talker yells for me to get a picture of a cool golf cart. Art may be cool, but cars and trucks will always RULE!

A little revisionist history

The Talker has changed his mind about The Tooth Fairy. Totally out of the blue, he just told me

"I forgot all about the Tooth Fairy being nice to kids. So I am not going to do all of that danger stuff..."

So I guess,Tooth Fairy, it is safe to resume the collecting of teeth. But you still might want to call ahead when it comes time to make a pick up in The Talker's room.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Museum trip from The Talker's point of view

The kids and I headed over to a new art museum this morning. At the Blanton, Thursdays are free, so we only had to drop a little cash to park nearby. On the way, I handed the digital camera to The Talker. He documented our drive pretty well, but he lost interest by the time we got inside the museum.

Here are a couple of his shots.

The Talker smiles!

The Princess smiles!

I thought this was The Princess pouting. After looking closer, and being corrected by The Boss, I now see it is The Talker. He says he wasn't sad, just playing.

You can see them all, over on his Flickr page. There are even a couple of pictures taken by The Princess, with a little help from daddy.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Somebody must have told him the REAL truth

about the Tooth Fairy.

Tonight before dinner, The Talker got real serious and stated quizzing The Boss Lady about the Tooth Fairy. Then he decided that it just did not sound like such good idea to him.

"I want to make a sign for my door.

What should it say?

Tooth Fairy don't come into my room!"

After the sign was made on a small marker board, he decorated the sign for a little emphasis.

"So, Buddy, what did you draw on the sign?

Broken glass and wood splinters.


So that when she tries to walk into my room, it'll hurt her feet."

Damn. The boy is worried about booby-trapping his room to protect himself from nocturnal chicks who steal your teeth. And I am kind of at a loss, so please don't tell him that the Tooth Fairy can fly.

And for god's sake, don't tell him the Tooth Fairy leaves more than a quarter per tooth. 'Cause this Tooth Fairy ain't made of money.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

It's just sad, really

I was just looking for a phone number. I found it in my cell phone, in a list of the 20 most recent outgoing calls.

The sad part, my list of 20 calls goes all the way back to the middle of last June. So it has taken me more than 7 months to make 20 calls. I. Am. A. Loser.

I should really quit talking to myself and start using up my cell minutes.

Maybe you had to be there

I just found a video from the day I got the truck started. That engine had not run in a dozen years. And The Talker was almost as excited as me.

Keep your eye on the bouncing boy.

He wiped out. Fell in the floor and hopped right back up to continue jumping on the seat. What the video does not show is me cracking up. Grinning because the truck is running and laughing at the boy falling off the seat.

What a good daddy I am!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Is there an echo in here?

"Guys, you know I am really tired of repeating myself. I asked you a question."

30 seconds of silence.

"Guys, why do I have to ask every question twice before y'all will answer?"

30 seconds of silence.

"What did you say dad? We were not listening to you."

"Uh, never mind."

See. It really is important for parent to be able talk to their kids.

Like I said...It really is important for parent to be able talk to their kids.

But everything else here is true, I swear!

He says with fingers crossed tightly behind his back.

I just re-read my entry about my wasted weekend and somehow, between my brain and the PUBLISH button, everything got sorta knocked outta whack.

Let me clarify.

The shed in the picture went to my neighbor's house in July of 2005. Thus the green grass. That stuff was soaking up about $90 a month in water. But it sure was pretty.

To set the record straight, here are a couple of pictures of the current state of our backyard.

If you look close, you can see the shed peeking from around the corner, in it's new hiding spot.
The grass isn't nearly as green, but at least it ain't covered in 87 feet of snow.

Here is one from Saturday. The start of another summer garden.

So there you have full disclosure. It isn't as green here as I led you to believe. But again, we can actually touch grass without digging with a snow shovel or hiring out a snow blower.

Now I am wondering how far would I have to go to rent a snow blower? Think I could get one in Oklahoma City?

Sunday, February 11, 2007

I can't even nap right

The wife and kids got home this afternoon. I had a beautiful plan for the weekend. I only had one thing to do all weekend.

But the weather went and screwed it all up.

It was such a nice day on Saturday, that I ended up working in the yard all day. I moved our storage shed from up near the house to around the corner, mostly hidden from view. I got the shed a year and a half ago, from a stay at home dad friend. I never liked where I set it up, so this was a good weekend to move it.

Back then, this is the phrase I originally left out of this post. And without it the whole thing seemed to lose it's meaning... I gave my old one to a neighbor. My good ol' garden wagon made moving the little shed easy and it was oh, so classy when I rolled it across the street!

This time I just rigged up some 2X4 runners and I slid the newer, bigger shed across the back yard and into place. No pics of this move, though. The new shed is one of those vinyl shed, so weight was not a problem. The hassle was that it is 8ft square and 7 1/2 feet tall.

I also worked on the veggie garden for a while. I need to fence it off to keep a certain big white dog out of it, so I started putting in the fence posts today. Most of the winter I have been piling up leaves and grass clippings. I ran the tiller through all of that mess to get the garden soil into good shape. It was a lot of fun, since one tire went flat, and the tiller kept pulling to that side. I'll blame the tiller if my garden is a little tilted this year.

I also helped move and set-up some bunk beds moved for Other Dad's kids. It's always a good time, when 4 men and one boy try to work together to get 2 bunk bed sets moved. I think the 7 year old was more helpful than any of us.

Next week is the Daytona 500, so I'll try to get some napping done next weekend, before the start of the race.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

As our Govenor once said:

Adios, Mofo.

The family is gone for a quick overnight. My allergies are driving me nuts, so this little piggy stayed home. Plans for the weekend include naps, sleeping, snoozing, resting and a little bit of nodding off while watching History Channel and ESPN.

See you Monday.

So, for now, from Austin, Texas, AtHomeDaddy signing off.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Look at what I can do

Oh no. The Talker just made me remember something stupid his old man did about 15 years ago.

"Hey dad, watch how fast I can drink this juice". And in one long draw on the straw it was gone. Then he hopped up, ran around the kitchen and asked for more juice, so he could try it "fasterer this time. Maybe we can race."

'Awwww hell no, boy'. The words that wanted to come out. "I don't think so". The daddy speak that I eventually uttered.

A little back story. 15 years ago. Working at a summer camp. The kids and staff all ate at giant tables, family style. Food had to be passed around the table, so that everyone would get their fill. No cafeteria lines here. And at the end of the meal someone, usually one staff member and one camper, had to get all of the dirty dishes and leftovers back to the kitchen. 'Slop tray duty'.

Lots of cabin leaders came up with charts and graphs to make sure every kid took a turn slopping the trays. For some reason, my cabin was never that organized. We usually settled it like the men and boys we were. Impromptu table top competitions broke out at every meal. All good stuff.

Who can burps the loudest.. Ready, set, BUUUUUUUUUUURP. Rock Paper Scissors to the death. Fastest to sing the ABCs. Who can gross out the girl's cabin over there the quickest?

The funny thing, was that it was a badge of honor in our cabin to slop a meal. Everyone else in camp knew that you were the best at whatever idiocy had broken around our table. You win, you heard the cheer "Hey, Hey, Slop Tray! The kitchen is thataway!"

So I challenged the kids to a milk drinking contest. But after slamming the milk you had to run out the door, go around the bell tower and be the first back to the table. A camper upped the ante. First one to win three laps, with a milk to slam in between, is IT.

Ready, set, guzzle!

On the third lap, I was heading around the bell tower as the nearest kid was just coming out of the dining hall. I was about to win! Look at me, everybody, I AM SLOP TRAY. FEAR ME!

Then it happened. I looked back over my shoulder, to pace myself so that the campers would be close enough that I could taunt them with my victory. When all of the sudden a 10 year old flew past me. I poured it on and almost caught him.

But then I barfed on him.

He won slop tray. But I don't think he wanted to win THAT bad.

I don't remember if he actually bussed the table that day. I think he headed to the cabin for a change of clothes and hopefully, a shower. But it was summer camp, so who knows.

I do remember him telling his mom and dad all about it wen they arrived a few days later to pick him up. This was a thing to brag about. He won slop tray. And got barfed on by a counselor, all at once. Yep. That was me. always making it special for the kids.

Sitting at lunch, watching my son jump up after slamming some white cranberry juice and wanting to run around the table, just made me want to hurl. Or maybe challenge him to a juice drinking contest.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The fire sale continues

No, I guess I won't list the kids on eBay. They were back to normal today. So they can remain here. (But I need to remember that Craig's List idea...)

The Big White Dog? Now he is in it. And deep.

The kids were well behaved at the grocery store this morning. So we stocked up on some stuff. I did not get it all put away before lunch time. Which is no big deal for most people. But if you have a Big White Dog who can grab things off of the counters or the top of the microwave, then you have to employ some high level strategy.

We have had dogs this large for a while, so I am usually a professional level dog-proofer. Or so I used to think. Kodak seems to be able to weasel into places that our other dogs never did. Like the breadbox.

So while the counters were full, the dog was in the yard and the back door was dead bolted, to keep the kids from accidentally letting him back in. Then the neighbor struck.

Our neighbor is a little odd. She also seems to need a lot of help from repairmen. She hardly ever comes out of her house. I guess paying appliance repair service calls provides her some socialization at $75 bucks a pop. Just this week I have seen an electrician, a plumber, the dog poop scooping service, the mobile dog groomer's, her pool cleaner and the maid service. Some times there are so many service trucks that they are double parked in her driveway.

The kids and I were playing in the front yard when the cable repair truck pulled up.
The neighbor must have the worst cable line in town, because these guys were out last week, too. And every time they come over, they have to get into our backyard to work on Wonder Woman's connection. So I ran through the house to unlock the gate. Kodak saw his chance and headed in the house. I forgot about the haul in the kitchen.

An hour later I stepped back into the house and I saw it on his face. He was a guilty dog. I found remnants of a brand new package of tortillas, the really nice ones, since the kids were behaving in the store and I had time to choose. He also got a loaf of bread and a new package of hot dog buns. He had obviously tried to get the to the last of my Girl Scout cookies.

The kids were almost sold to the highest bidder for schmucking around yesterday. But they were smart enough to stay out of the Girl Scout cookies. Maybe I should give Kodak a reprieve since he did not ACTUALLY get the cookies.

I guess we will just have to get some taller shelves before next cookie season.

2 for one sale on pre-schoolers

Yesterday the kids drove me up the freaking wall. They quit fighting with each other long enough to whine and scream in the car, but that did not help. We tried to run some errands. I wanted to let them burn off some energy at the park or at the Y. We did not even make it out of the neighborhood before they were hauled back home.

Today I think they are spending most of the day in neutral corners. They both have enough toys to entertain scores of children. Plus, we have to go to the grocery store and they really like the Wednesday YMCA playgroup. Hopefully they can behave enough that we can make it off our street.

Otherwise, they go up on eBay tonight.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Bad Ground by W. Dale Cramer
An AtHomeDaddy Review

Last month I sent up a review of Summer of Light, by W. Dale Cramer. And yesterday, when I was cruising Dad websites I happened across an add for the book. I was a little flattered to see that most of that review was published online on the authors website.

I woke up early this morning and remembered the whole stack of books I checked out at the library. Since bringing them home I have not touched any of them. I picked up the first one on the pile, another Cramer book, Bad Ground.

Like his newest book, Bad Ground was an easy read. This story follows Jeremy, a high-school dropout on a trek across country to find his estranged uncle, just days after his mother dies.

The scarred and tough uncle, appropriately nicknamed, Snake, has answers about the accidental death of Jeremy's dad ten years earlier. But it is up to the boy to get the hard rock miner to share what he knows. And through it all Jeremy has held onto a child-like faith that Snake sorely needs.

Though I have never been in a mine, the characters in this book all seemed very real. And I think there are a lot of days I have just as much in common with Snake, a burned and battle weary miner as I did with Mick, the Stay at Home Dad character in Summer of Light.

Next up, either another Cramer book, Levi's Will or John Grisham's The Broker.

"You look a little scared"

About a million years ago, on one of my first days staying at home with an 8 month old Talker, we walked up to the neighborhood park. I thought the exercise would do me some good. Turned out the boy liked to snooze in the jogging stroller, so it was a good combination.

When I got up there, it was the scheduled time for a Mommy and Me playgroup. Most of the families lived in the neighborhood, but I did not know any of them. A few knew me as the guy who had big white dogs. But I was not being drug down the street by Bill and Ben. I was now holding a baby boy. And he was a lot cuter than their ugly babies. So they were jealous of that.

I got a varied reaction form the moms. Most of them just carried on with mommy playgroup stuff. A few mommas looked worried that I was in the park at 9:00 in the morning. One actually moved her son away from The Talker when I set him down to play. And one mom told me "You look a little scared", then she introduced herself and a couple of her friends. We made chit-chat about kids and the neighborhood.

The kids and I got in the habit of going up to the park at that same time each week. The moms that I knew made me feel OK about hanging out at the weekly hen party. When we were there I was usually chatting up the ladies that I met that first afternoon. It was a nice chance for the kids to play and for me to talk to other adults.

Flash forward to 2007. We are now out of the habit of going to the neighborhood park. Instead we tend to hit the YMCA , play at home or we hang with the Stay at Home Dad's group.

Monday afternoon was gorgeous. 75 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. Take that Pittsburgh. So we headed to the park. In our t-shirts, shorts and sandals. Take that Long Island. Anyways, it seems that most of the neighborhood had the same idea. There must have been 45 kids at the park.

When I saw all of the cars at the park, I slipped back to five years ago. I was hoping that The Talker and The Princes would just be able to find someone to play with. After all of these years we were breaking into the secret mom's group again.

I looked up the hill and saw the same four ladies that I always hung out with. They were still chatting about the kids and the neighborhood. And the mom who had welcomed me almost 5 years did it once again. "You know, you still look a little scared." After that it was a very nice time. For The Talker, The Princess and the daddy.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Not until you are 21, son

There must be a need for it, but I can't figure it out. Here in town we have a barbershop called Sexy Scissors. Evidently you can go and get a haircut from a stylist wearing a low cut blouse AND have a brew all at once.

We drove past this place today. The kids saw the giant scissors with legs on the side of the building. They both decided they want to go there and get haircuts. But I think I'll defer to better judgement and make them stick with Barber Mommy.

We don't have to pay her nearly as much, and there is much less of getting them a haircut I'll regret because I had one too many beers while I was in the waiting area.

Just call me Daddy

Back when I posted about The Talker's nicknames, I started thinking about my own names and how they have changed over the years. Racecar Man once told his children, "You two kids are the only two people in the world who get to call me Daddy." So I'll start there and work backwards.

Daddy - I've only been one of those for 5 years and a few weeks. But off all the things I have been called, it seems to suit me the best. I only hear it from two people. And I seldom fall for another kid calling out "Daddy". It just does not sound right unless it comes from one of my own.

AtHomeDaddy - I picked it because all of the other blog titles I could think of were already taken on Blogger. The longer it is around, the more I like it and the more I use it online. Though I have yet to introduce myself in person to anyone as AtHomeDaddy.

Mike - My name, used by almost everyone, formal and informal acquaintances alike. It was on my business cards, but that was partially because the printer had a hard time spelling Michael correctly.

Michael - My big sister, one of my long time participants at the recreation center, and one of my mom's friends are about the only people left who call me Michael. When anyone calls me Michael, I think of these three ladies. Or I know I am in trouble. Some guys are Michaels. I am not. And I knew it when I first learned to spell my name.

Mikey - My college nickname from the one year I lived in a dorm. I still hear it from the few guys I keep in contact with.

Art Fag's Roommate - Another dorm nickname. I only lived with him for a semester. Oddly, he had given that nickname to himself. The gay guys in the dorm were lucky since he was actually straight. Which made the whole thing that much more confusing.

Duh Wayne - Mother's in law have to be good for something, right?

Stick, Sticky, Sticky Micky, Stick Man - It seems that no matter what summer camp I worked at, some variation of this followed me there. It started as a joke because I was so skinny (If only they could see me now!). This nickname gained new found glory one summer in northern Indiana after I almost cut off my thumb while I was showing some teens how to whittle on sticks. I still have my thumb. And the stick.

Red Fred - Apparently my family thinks I used to have red hair. They really need to re-check the old photos. I was always blond. And I used to fight you if you called me Red Fred. I killed that nickname when my lovely girlfriend bought me a really nice, red mountain bike. I stenciled his name right on the top tube. And once and for all, everyone knew who Red Fred was. Red Fred and my college girlfriend are both still around here, somewhere.

Michael, Michael Motorcycle - Like Red Fred, it would make me wanna fight. I don't really know why. Motorcycles are cool, right? And like Michael, I mainly heard this from my big sister.

Famous Amos - A neighbor and friend of Mom and Dad's called me this. Then a few other people at church picked up on it. You might think it would make me fight, but it always made me laugh. Probably because my sister never said it.

Tigger - No one, and I mean no one get to call me this any more, except my momma. Got it? My momma gets to do whatever she wants. She is old and cranky and still bigger than me and I am still scared of her a little. But Sticky Man is not scared of you! I do still have a pretty good collection of Tigger gear, though.

I am sure there are others. I don't really want to know what my teachers called me when they were smoking in the book room. And I am sure church group leaders had a few, choice names for me. But these are the nicknames that mattered to me. And only one of these really matters any more.

That one made it all the way to the top of my list.

I seem to do this a lot lately

I try to keep truck stuff off of this site. Makes it easier for me to remember where I posted stuff and a little less tedious for you guys. Still, I have posted a couple of times lately about stuff over on my truck blog. And this was just too good not to post on both.

So without any shame I present you a 2 for 1 blog post, straight from TruckinDaddy:

My college buddy reworked a picture of my truck. He took it from this:

to this:

When I showed the picture to my five year old son, he asked when we could take it for a ride. I think he was a little sad when he peeked into the garage and saw blue old Marge sitting there.

Thanks for the chop, Redneck Mother!

Sleeping like a dog

Kodak was asleep like this when I got up. I just walked into the bedroom and he is still laying feet up, over an hour later.

Oh look, Sleeping Stinky is awake. Just so you get some idea of how much stink this guy can contain, here is another pic.

I better go vacuum up some dog hair.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Wasted weekend

I spent all day yesterday and a good portion of the afternoon today under the truck. If you care, you can read about that stuff over there.

Surely I did something else. But right now I am just so happy to have a truck that doesn't leak, I can't remember anything else from this weekend.

Well, there was the argument with the wife, but that is a little too personal to blog about. Even though I won.

Friday, February 02, 2007

A peek back

Long Island Dad got me looking back into the photo archives for one of my favorite pics this morning. Then I couldn't stop. Enjoy the peek into the family history.

See, we did get some snow here. Once, about three years ago.

This is the picture that I started out looking for. Our Helper, helping build the playscape.


Another of my all time favorites. Playscape building day.

Yes, she is standing in a rocking chair.
And yes, I grabbed a camera before I rescued her from breaking herself.

A captive audience for some easy laughs.

Don't know where we were going, but I bet we were having fun!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

I'm not sure which is louder

Pop's tractor or the shirt...

Sadly, this is the best picture I could find of my best orange Hawaiian shirt.

Follow the blue trail home

We made the cruise home yesterday afternoon. I drove and we never stopped. You gotta love a DVD player in the back seat. The kids will give up potty breaks and snacks to watch a movie in the car. They had a fun time entertaining Dad and Mom on our whirlwind trip.

We headed to the mall last night, to shop for clothes for me. One of my least favorite things in the world. Let's face it, I only have to dress a little nicer than a college kid on his way to class one day a week. For about 3 hours total. Still, I have been wearing the same 3 or 4 shirts to church every week for about a year (maybe more, I don't really care). But The Boss Lady knew about a 75% off sale so I gave in.

So now my wardrobe is a few steps closer to being fully monochromatic. Not really on purpose, but the clothes I picked out were all blue shirts and tan pants. Just like almost everything else in my closet. Except for the orange and black Hawaiian shirt with huge white flowers on it that I have been expressly forbidden from wearing to church. Some say it is because it is ugly, others say it is because I bought it at the grocery store when I ran to get milk and bread. It spoke to me, OK.

I digress. The rest of my shirts are either blue or green. I was going to try and diversify the collection, but no dice this trip. I think I'll wear a blue shirt and tan pants to church on Sunday. Think anyone will notice my new clothes?

I bet they would notice my orange Hawaiian shirt.