Friday, June 29, 2012

Happy Birthday Lily Bug

My niece turned 3 today.  I can't believe it.  That happened way to fast.  I love that she calls me Uncle Kwiss.  It's getting closer to my name all the time.  Not that I care all that much.  She can get away with calling me pretty much anything.  Happy 3rd kiddo!

Don't Go Breakin' My Heart

Caz broke his first heart this week.  So long are the days of passing notes:  "Do you like me?  Check Y or N".  Now it's all about texting - "Do you like me?".
      I will say that Caz handled himself well.  He was a gentleman about it.  He responded truthfully but politely.  That is not an easy feat as a adult.  There did not seem to be any hard feelings.  Well done, young man.
     I told him that I was proud of him.  He didn't even ask why.  I told him that it always important to be considerate of a girl's feelings.  It is not "manly" to be cruel or mean.  Chivalry may still stand a chance.  

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Demi and I discussed at length, what kind and how much freedom Caz was going to have on this family vacation.  He was going to be old enough to walk into town.  He could stroll in for lunch, or an ice cream.  There was a mini golf place.  As long as he was not a alone and had his cellphone, it seemed like a no brainer.  The other concern?  Girls.  We didn't feel comfortable letting him wander off unchaperoned with the two older (by a year) girls.  Those two were not shy last year.  We didn't expect that to subside this year.  So guidelines were set.  Nightly curfews were in effect.  Demi and I would stay out and about while he was still running around.  Supervised freedom.  That's still freedom, right?

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Choose Wisely

During a 5 hour voyage to The Island, eldest son has a choice to make.  On the one hand an iPod loaded with a newly purchased Dumb and Dumber video.  On the other hand a stack of books.  The Percy Jackson series.  Caz started watching the movie.  But 5 minutes into it, he shut it off.  He picked up the book and started his reading journey.
     Incidentally, he finished the last 4 books in the series in two days.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The 3 R's

4 hours to New York. Full tank of gas. Large Diet Coke. Hit it. So if you placed a bet on the following, where would you put your chips? A 13 year old kid, on a family car ride. There is an iPod loaded with Dumb & Dumber. And there is a stack of Percy Jackson books. Place your chips now. And......Percy Jackson wins. It made me smile anyway.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Alice Cooper Time

School's out.....For......Summer! The kids are excited anyway. Not sure how Demi feels about it. The boys. Home. 24/7. Let the summer games begin. I am sure that will include a heavy dose of Hunger Games. What's the point of a two hour last day of school, where the kids just watch a movie? At least that was the kids argument. Why bother? Can't say I disagree. I was hoping Caz would use it as a last chance to gather phone numbers, have the yearbook signed, and socialize a bit. I guess the boys are lucky that Demi is a softie and is the one home with them in the morning.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Father's Day 2012

Happy Day, Dads!  I hope you enjoy the day, whatever you do.  Personally, I decided to forgo sleeping in for going to Spin class.  I figure if I can get in a solid Spin, then I can go breakfast guilt free.  Well, less guilt anyway.  I knew I was going to stop Eating Clean today.  One day won't set me back too far.
     Breakfast at The Hop in Brant Rock was fantastic.  Too many menu items to choose from.  I had an urge for pancakes.  The omelets are fantastic.  Eggs Benedict are always a nice treat.  But I simply had to try the crunchy French toast, coated in Frosty Flakes.  We lucked out from the get go.  A 45 minute wait time last about 15 with a cup of coffee on the patio.  The weather was beautiful for sitting outside.
     I got to read the sports page in the hammock.  Gizmo decided to join me there.  She was so good that I thought she deserved a walk down on the beach.  We both loved that actually.  Demi got to sit and read in the sun a bit.  The boys read too.  They waited patiently, so we took the to Dairy Twist.  DT offered a Puppy Cup, so Gizmo got some too.  That place is the Bomb.  Great ice cream, very generous portions, and reasonable prices.  Oh, and they have a nice patio sitting area.
     Dinner at Mom and Dad's was nice.  We got a boat load of wings from Pizzings.  Dad got a kick out of that.  Burger, Chinese sausage, summer salad, whoppie pies, and strawberry shortcake = winner, winner, chicken dinner.
     So if it was BBQ, or golf, or the beach, or hammock time, I hope all you Dads out there had a great day.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Katniss Rising

"May the odds be ever in your favor"

So Coco finally decided how he wanted to celebrate his birthday.  He decided on Monday.  At school. And told his classmates before he told us.  He came home from school and told Demi that all the boys in his class could come over on Saturday (today) to play the Hunger Games.  Sure there were some logistics to work out but that's minor, right?  Demi promptly sent out an email to parents to invite them to send their sons to partake in the Hunger Games, have some pizza and cake, and to bring their favorite weapon of choice.  You don't see that every day, do you?
     We received sincere permission to use our neighbors field.  20 boys brought foam swords, plastic swords, shields, gloves, pads, etc.  They found a patch of bramble to use as the Cornucopia.  All weapons were placed there.  They lined up at the end of the field and waited for the countdown.  The race to the Cornucopia was mayhem.  The boys had been forming alliances all week.  Now they were enacting them.  After round 1, they ruled that alliances could be no more than 4 members.  You could see the strategy at work.  Some of the quiet kids tried to stay unnoticed as kids weeded out others.  Groups ganged up on the stronger alliances.  At one point the "killed" players were release as the mutant hounds, running on all fours.  The battles were epic.  Demi and I worried about some over exuberant strikes.  But all was well.  The only real worry was poison ivy.  The kids played for 4 hours.  The other parents got a free afternoon and tired kids.  Good day for all.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Boys Night Out - Round 2

My second go round with 5th grade Boys Night Out.  That's right.  Time for "The Video".  The outdated, School House Rock type educational video which documents "the change".
     I did for Coco, what I did for Caz.  I made a whole father/son evening out of it.  We went out to dinner.  The boy tried his first Steak Bomb, with a side of boneless buffalo wings.  A "side" that comes with 10 pieces, so that it's pretty much a whole meal.  But, it was his night.  And he ate a good deal of it.  After dinner on the drive to the PAC, he read "Where Do I Come From."  It's an old 70's book that my parents got for me when the time came.  It's still relevant.  It's accurate but cartoon enough to not freak a kid out.  Coco seemed a lot more traumatized after it than Caz did.  Coco sort of stared out the window with eyes the size of dinner plates.  I asked him it that was how he thought babies were made and he said, "no."  It was a pretty emphatic "no."
     The routine at school was the same.  Gym time lasted a bit longer that it should have.  Basketballs were flying everywhere.  Dad got bonked routinely.   The boys entered lottery tickets.  Then off to the PAC.  We each took a quiz on the other.  Favorite TV Show.  Favorite Book.  First job.  Favorite dinner.  That kids of stuff. Then the video came.  It was different from Caz's.  It had the iPod silhouette guy break dancing.  It was an illustration of Rhythm.  Which the body changes in rhythm.  Get it?  I would say this time around, more Dad were snickering and giggling than the kids.  [Enter your deity here] help us. The kids got note cards to ask questions before running off to snack time.  Back for Q&A.  I give the principal credit.  He handles the questions excellently.  I don't get the whole Price is Right gift lottery give away though at the end.  It seems really odd.
     Coco and I stopped for ice cream after.  We talked.  I asked him if he had any question.  His only one was about the "nocturnal emissions".  I still am in awe over that terminology.  I told him I would rather ask me, Mom, his uncles, or aunt and get the truth, rather than someone else.  We talked about how kids made up stuff when they didn't know the answer, and this was hard for some to admit they don't know.  I told him I would always tell him the truth.  What like most about the evening was the emphasis on everyone changing at different times and that it was not OK to tease someone about it.  It was said much more eloquently but the point got across.
     Another successful milestone.  Good luck my brother.  You're turn will come, faster than you think.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Rainy Weekend

Sure rainy weekends are a downer.  I was so close to going to the beach despite the cold and drizzle.  I had the cooler packed with food.  I had water and drinks.  Apparently I was deemed not sane and was over ruled. But we had a fun weekend anyway.  We put the inside time to good use.
     Saturday I joined Demi for a hard core "Cycling" class.  Apparently her gym is too cool to conduct a spin class.  I will say it was a great class.  I like the boys seeing us going to the gym and on this occasion, going to work out together.  Afterwards, Demi and I made breakfast for Coco and his cousin.  We got to spend some family time with my cousin's family just after.
     We all got some inside chores down.  Personally, I organized the attic.  It was long overdue.  This included putting the humidifiers away for the season.  Finally.  The boys helped put dishes away, clean the kitchen, and organize the main floor.  They put away laundry and cleaned their rooms.
     Demi and I went food shopping together.  Another good exercise for the boys to witness.  I think it is good for the boys to see the split of duties, the teamwork, and the sharing of responsibilities.  They helped unload it all when we got home. The boys also did a great job looking after themselves while Demi and I went out to eat.  We are still testing out the scenario, leaving them for short stretches.  So far they have behaved themselves and conducted themselves well.  This time we had a curve ball thrown when one of their friends walked down to our house to invite Caz over for sleepover.  The boys knew that no one was aloud in the house, while we are out.  They explained that to their friend.  They made sure to lock the door after.  It was a successful test. And we all passed.