Tag Archives: shopping

Scenes from Saturday + Treats & Tricks

It’s National Library Week and I’m going to admit one of my biggest fears: despite trying to lead by example, despite having books piled up around the house, despite literally writing books myself, my kids won’t be lifelong readers. They won’t love books.

When we visited Paris, searching out a famous bookstore was on the agenda. I love books.

I believe reading is the greatest shortcut to self-improvement. Yet most people I know struggle to find the time to do it. And if we struggle to do it for ourselves, we struggle even more to get our kids to do it.

Other than not letting them root for any NY team, getting them to appreciate, enjoy, and want to read, is one of my top priorities as a Dad.

I say ‘no’ constantly to their requests when we are out doing errands but I never say no to a book. I try to think of books as investments. You put down a few dollars, commit several hours, and you get something back. That might be a few hours of escape, feeling less alone, learning a new skill, or solving a problem.

Give them someone to look up to and a book they can come back to.

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Scenes from Saturday + Gucci & Snack Cake

After I pushed the girls out the door and they made the bus by the skin of their teeth yet again, I went upstairs to get dressed and found both their lights on, one bed unmade, clothes on the floor and…the list could go on. You get the idea. I’ve told them a million times and yet…still a mess.

I got dressed and went to my desk mildly fuming and….found picture frames still not hung up. A computer still running Windows 7. A fish tank that could be cleaned. Plants slowly dying on the bookshelf. How many times had I been told or told myself to do these things and they still weren’t done?

That was my Dad epiphany this week. Like most weeks, it wasn’t all that profound but jeez kids spend a lot of their days getting commands, demands and requests thrown at them. Maybe cut them a little slack. Or at least a little understanding. Maybe finally hanging up those pictures will show them it’s hard for me too but I’m trying. Worst case, Michelle will have one less thing to do on a Saturday.

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Scenes from Saturday + Flashcards!

We had Cecilia’s parent-teacher conference last week. I really like her teacher this year. I specifically like that she’s open to the new methods but recognizes that the older techniques still have merit. In short, I’m glad I can understand some of the math homework each week without having to lookup and re-learn how to add 2 digit numbers. 

After spending the first few months of the year on learning the underlying concepts, third graders are finally moving toward rote memorization. That means flashcards! I love flashcards. Part of my courtship strategy with Michelle was to create flashcards for her in college. It was only during the last house move that I was finally convinced to throw away a box of rubber banded flashcards dating back to freshman year high school biology.  Continue Reading

Scenes from Saturday + Shopping Obsessions

There is this coat. Cecilia wants it. She wants it bad. For the first time, she won’t be put off with vague assertions of waiting until Christmas or her birthday. She needs it. If she doesn’t get it a small piece of her soul will be lost and no matter how long she lives or how much happiness she might find, her life will never be complete. That kind of coat.

Maybe this is more of a girl thing. I don’t remember ever wanting anything to tears. If I did covet anything it was probably an expansion floppy disk for SimCity or an omnibus edition of the complete works of Arthur C. Clarke or something equally and deeply dorky. Nothing worth crying over. Maybe time or self-preservation has dulled my memory. 

This started on Wednesday with a brief mention of girls wearing these reversible coats at school, but it built to a crescendo by Friday afternoon and threatened to spiral out of control. Alone with the girls, I hit the panic button and called Michelle at work. She was able to use her Mom superpowers, or maybe her own memories of that bedazzled jean jacket she wanted, and talk Cecilia off the ledge. Continue Reading