Tag Archives: pizza

Scenes from Saturday + Skillets & Curiosity

I watch a lot of Jeopardy. It is my relaxing cup of tea at the end of the day. Never cottoned to the Wheel but something immediately clicked with its sister show. Maybe it was the resemblance to flash cards.

A lot of other people have been watching lately with the big runs by Matt Amodio and Amy Schneider. Including my kids. At first, I think it was just the allure of the television being on during a weeknight, but now they genuinely want to watch.

Most people think to be good on Jeopardy that you need to be smart. Or, really good on the buzzer. Or, have fast recall. Those all certainly help but I think the biggest key to Jeopardy success is to be curious.

We don’t have control over what kind of brain our kids were born with. But what we can influence whether they’re curious. We can encourage the ask questions and seek answers. We can cultivate this instinct until it becomes part of their personality.

And, of course, like a lot of parenting, we can demonstrate it by doing it. It’s a two way street. Explore what they are curious about but also have them engage with you and what you’re curious about. A curious Dad is both a good parent and a smart parent.

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Scenes from Saturday + Pizza & Time Warps

I often complain about the kids in this blog, in a humorous way, but still usually some chiding complaint. I thought I should at least offer a positive story once in awhile. Just not too often. Don’t want them to get inflated egos.

Cecilia didn’t do well on a test (sorry, can’t call them tests anymore – check-in) earlier this year. To be fair, given the email we received from the teacher, many kids did not do well (which might make me think about the teaching methods…). I digress.

Cecilia latched onto this group failure as her life preserver. Sorry, not going to work, in school or life. You will make mistakes. Nobody is perfect and we all make our fair share of mistakes. Even Dad bloggers. Maybe one or two a year.

However, if you do not take responsibility for the mistake and do your best to correct it, then you are committing a second mistake. You can probably picture me telling her this. Or you probably have given your own kids similar advice. Take responsibility. Do the right thing, even though you may feel embarrassed by your previous actions. Don’t compound the error.

You also probably walked away wondering if any of that sank into their teenage brain.

Well, last Wednesday, I received an unexpected text that Cecilia was staying after school for extra help to prepare for a te-, eh, check-in the next day. She listened! She didn’t compound the error! She still rolled her eyes when I picked her up, but I’m sure she was smiling on the inside.

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Scenes from Saturday + Raising Cane

I’m reading more biographies as I get older and often find myself nodding along at more than one passage. Not often at the genius parts or the reason the biography was written, but at the glimpses of the ordinary parts. People, polymath, prodigy, or sage, are vastly more alike than different.

This becomes especially clear about parenting.

I came across this passage from a book on Queen Victoria from her personal secretary: ““It was easier to go back to [her work] than children having tantrums,” she said. “She always had the excuse of the red boxes.’’

Well, then. She found it easier to be the head of state for the largest empire in the world than to be a parent!

I found that reassuring during this stressful and hectic pre-holiday time. It’s hard, for everyone, but it’s worth it.

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Scenes from Saturday + Leaves & Wreathes

Allison’s close contact status disrupted a few birthday celebrations, her own and her friends. She was upset. A reasonable reaction from an excitable 8 year old but also an opportunity, not for flash cards, I couldn’t find a way to work those in, but for my Dad rhetoric.

The pandemic has taken so much but also provided a few less obvious things to be thankful for. Thanks for giving me hundreds of consecutive days at home with the kids. Thanks for helping me slow down. Thanks for helping me structure my day around the things that matter most.

Every situation has two handles. You can decide to grab onto frustration or appreciation. You can pick up the handle of resentment or gratitude. You can look at the obstacle or get a little closer and see the opportunity.

“Dad, can one handle be decorated with glitter?”

“Sure, grab the glitter handle, Ally.”

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Scenes from Saturday + Dough & Debit Cards

When I was growing up, 90% of my time and energy was spent on sports. The other ten percent was used up with SimCity strategies and reading sci-fi novels. But mostly it was sports. Any sport.

The girls have zero interest in sports, at least right now. Not even if it involves glitter. And that’s fine with me.

My life is better and richer now with musicals, bubblegum pop, trombone, dance recitals, and crafts.

Being a parent isn’t easy but a lot of it is common sense. Don’t be an idiot. Don’t try to give them your childhood. Don’t close your mind. Adjust.

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