Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Happy First Birthday to my niece. She's a cutie. Congratulations, little brother. You've done well. It's hard for me to believe that she's one already. I remember back when the boys each turned one. These are the moments that people always tell you goes fast and to slow down to enjoy it. You never really understand it though, until you live it. I know my little brother gets it now. He was almost out of state for the big event, courtesy of work. He was really upset about it. It all worked out in the end. Well, as best it could anyway. As long as the family is together to celebrate, you have what you need. Even if it is in downtown Springfield.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Tee Time for One

Caz made a bold move today. Kid Cautious went out, all on his own to play his first solo 9 hole round of golf. Demi had quite a call to make all on her own. This was very similar to the time Caz was snowboarding for the first time on the slope (see previous posts). Demi had a big choice to make. Was he ready to go out on his own? Was he mature enough to behave and follow all the rules of etiquette? Caz had to make a big leap of faith on his own as well. He is a shy kid that does not venture out much on his own. He doesn't take a lot of risk. (Not sure where he comes by that....)
The gambit really paid off. Caz had a great time and did just fine. He claims to have shot a very low score, but it's sort of like fishing. "I caught one this big but it got away". But hey, his playing. I think I have created a monster.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day 2010

Happy Father's Day to all you Dad's out there. A special congratulations to little brother, who is celebrating his first. It really has been a great day. The kids, Gizmo, and Demi woke me up (after sleeping late) with coffee and a pre-brunch snack. The boys had wrapped some gifts, which we opened. One however was really impressive. Caz had been working on a gift for weeks. He took a branch from one he hand picked. He cut it the way he wanted. He spent hours sanding it by hand. He carved some words into it. He coated it with a clear polish. When he was done, he had created a magnificent walking stick for our hikes. I was really blown away. Coco had made one as well. He decided to give his to my little brother for his first Father's Day. The boys are really thoughtful. They carefully planned all this out. They spent a lot of time working on these. I was really amazed by what they put into it.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Boys Night Out - Puberty Edition

In yet another sign of how education has changed since back in the day, the ritual of Grade 5 watching The Film, is now a whole event. Not quite a family event. But a father and son night on the town, so to speak. When I was in 5th grade, the boys in neighboring classed went into one room, the girls in another, and each watch a specific 16 mm film on puberty. It was outdated of course. Not quite 1950'2 but not far after. I doubt it was in the right decade. My particular class thought we were revolutionary at the time. We petitioned to see the other sex's video. After lobbying the teacher, he sought permission from the Principal and the parents. We were allowed to split up and watch the other gender's film. I truly think we got a lot out of it, despite the uncomfortableness and giggling.
Like everything else these days, birthday, Arbor day, Truck Day (you have to be a Sox fan to appreciate that) the watching of The Film is not a full blown event. A whole night is dedicated to it. Fathers (or guardians or father figure) and sons meet up at the school, shoot some hoops, complete an ice breaker quiz to generate discussion, watch the film on puberty, have a snack, and then reconvene for question and answers. It was actually very well done.
I have to give the Principal credit, he hosted a difficult forum. The film was still out of date but at least I could relate. There was a cordless phone with a metal, telescoping antenea, a Micheal Jordan poster, acid wash jeans, and a mullet. It was produced by Disney witch caught me eye. Everything seemed to be going fine. The requisite giggling was held to a minimum. It all seemed straight forward, body odor, vioce changes, and hair growth. But then the A bomb dropped. Nocturnal emissions. That is the new lingo for wet dreams. And they called it that too. Of course the 2 questions jotted down on the note cards for the Q&A sessions were about that. The Principal handled that well too. He answered honestly. He started on a tangent but brought it back in.
I had decided early on to make a night of it. I figured that Caz and I had talked, age appropriately about reproduction and sex over the years. But on the ride to the school, I had him read a book I was given as a kid called, "Where did I come from?" I thought the book was pretty well done. I had re-read it and had Demi read it as well. It was cartoon illustrated but gave a good honest account of how babies are made.
On the way home, we talked about it all, puberty and sex. I asked Caz if he had questions. He mostly had questions about the umbilical cord and fetus. But I made sure he had his facts straight. What really got me was when I asked that he understood that just because you can do something, Caz finished my statement "doesn't mean you should." It made me feel like he got it. We talked about going to junior high next year, and how kids can pick on others in the gym. Mostly bullies tried to make themselves feel better because they are nervous or scared about what is physically changing with them. He understood.
Then we got ice cream and called it a night. I call it a success.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Memorial Day

The kids and I has a really good discussion of the meaning of Memorial day. They knew that a main theme was patriotism. But I did have to explain that is was specifically a rememberence of those that were killed in action, defending our country. Coco had made a comment that it was day to honor his Yaya, my dad. I had to explain to him that indeed my dad had served our country in the Marines but the day was about those that did not make it back. He got it. But I enjoy these discussion with the boys. I like that they are curious and want to know things.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The Battle of Evermore

Well, battle through the teens at most is what I am hoping. You know, in baseball, if you go 2 for 3, you would consider it a great game. But if you go a long weekend with 2 great days and one not so great, it feels like you lost. I think the late nights, sun, activities, sugar, excitement, and so on, took their toll on the boys. So by Monday, they were a little ornery. Which in turn made me a little ornery. I think it may feel like these days happen more often than they do. But on those days when they are trying my patience, I have to keep reminding myself that the boys are good boys. I may have to stifle myself. I may have to breathe and count to ten. And sometimes I may not succeed at any of those. I just keep trying. That is what Dad's do.