Stuff my kid says: From the mouth of a preemie.

Who knew?

Strange how time affects things, how it can change your point of view or even your philosophy on stuff. Take for instance my now 5-year-old daughter. While in the NICU weighing a slight 1 pound 12 ounces any sound she made was met with joy and celebration. A burp, a cry, even a tiny little preemie fart, was cause for elation. Now, five years later, well let’s say the philosophy has changed a wee bit.

We summoned her upstairs to try on some new PJs. She was in the living room alone, it was quiet. And that’s important. When I called her to come upstairs it got dead quiet. Think of the quiet before a nuke goes critical and destroys everything in 100 square miles and you’d be close to the quiet before what we now call The Event.

When she realized we wanted her to stop what she was doing and come up stairs we clearly heard her say semi-under her breath, Well Shit. That was followed by her slow stomping her way up the stairs.

I am not embarrassed to say it was one of the proudest moments of my life. Not only did she use the proper word and context. She used the proper inflection. It was impeccable delivery.  I mean it was wrong on almost every level but damn it was funny. Tracy did not think so but I didn’t notice because I was too busy peeing my pants laughing.

But she wasn’t done. In fact she has offered so much funny lately I’m only giving you the best few as I see it. Or hear it as it were.

Behold:

We are both having hotdogs with ketchup. Frank and I are equivalent. Daddy equivalent means equal or the same. As you might imagine that was uttered with condescension dripping from all sides of it. She actually paused, taking the time to explain it to me as if I was the one in the room who could not possibly comprehend that word. She might as well have said excuse me while I explain it to you know who. All accompanied by a smirk and the old thumb wave that says hey look at the dope. Just remember when you point one finger at someone there are four more pointing back at you. To whit…

Daddy, dog water tastes just as good as people water. This revelation was made mere seconds after she educated me on the word equivalent. But this is the joy of young minds right? To her both of those statements were equally smart and observant. You might say they were equivalent. That is until your mind stops long enough to ask what should have been the obvious question. Anne Marie how do you know what dog water tastes like? Turns out thew answer is as obvious as the question.

The road warrior herself. Dreaming of first class leg room.

Daddy if it takes 13 hours to drive to New Jersey why don’t we just fly? Ah silly little child. If we flew we would be depriving you of that great American tradition; the family road trip. You see Anne Marie it’s supposed to take 13 hours so you can, we all can, experience the misery of the road trip in all it’s pee stops and hours long traffic jam glory. It’s what builds character and makes American strong. Fly? Fly! Don’t be silly. That would only take 1 hour and 45 minutes. What the hell are we supposed to do with the other 11 hours and 15 minutes?

Daddy we could live here forever! She tossed out that gem after it was discovered that Avalon NJ, the city where we rented the beach house for the week, had a Duck Doughnuts. That’s a cake doughnut place that has become wildly popular in the south. They make the doughnuts right in front of you, then put anything you want on them. I’m not saying I would do violence for a maple glazed with bacon on top, but I’m not not saying it either. Strawberry glaze with rainbow sprinkles is her regular. Of course this desire to stay in the homeland was also after we had real pizza for dinner one night and Italian subs the next and we spent a six days on the beach and at the pool. Live there forever, of course she’d want to. But will we? Of course we won’t.

I just don’t know who I’m going to marry. That bombshell came when I found her, at the ripe old age of four, sitting on the hallway floor in front of her room looking despondent. When I asked her the issue, she dropped that on me. She was very concerned that she would not find someone to marry. I suggested that she wait till at least her 5th birthday to get worried about that. She was agreeable but not happy. I’m still in counseling.

And for the top, and likely most disturbing comment…

Daddy do girls grow a penis? Tracy and I just looked at each other for a very awkward minute and it became painfully clear this was my hot potato to handle. It was like tip toeing though a mine field. Ah… no Anne Marie only boys have a penis. She paused for a quick second and offered this, That’s good. Cause I don’t want one of those. My thought – Hold on to that attitude for the next 80 years if you don’t mind.

And with that the conversation ended and she jumped into her bed and reminded us to turn on her sound machine and ceiling fan. That was our invitation to leave so she could go to sleep. So it appears we will be paying dearly for all of the quite, happy go lucky, rule following we got from Frank.

God help us all.

Diary of a SAHD: Aces, Hobbits, and Toots.

Editors note: This is the second installment of a multi-part series on our summer road trip to NJ. They are not in sequential order.  Some of this will be akin to eye wateringly boring home movies.  Yeah, I just made a new adverb.  Anyway, you’ve been warned.

I may have mentioned before that Frank can be a bit of a ball buster when he’s playing golf.  It wasn’t going to be a problem on the vacation be cause I would be playing golf without Frank.  Or so I thought.

One night the gang went out for ice cream.  I stayed at the house for some quiet time.  While out they found a place called Pirate Island Golf, a mini-golf joint.  Or as Frank calls it Minataur Golf. Not sure why but this particular pronunciation tickles Grammy to no end.

Anyway, Mrs. Frank’s Place thought it would be a good idea if I took Frank down there myself, just me and him.  It was two blocks away, sounded like fun, why not.

Why not indeed.

First of all, it was 20 freaking dollars.  That’s what I pay back in Knoxville to play on a real golf course, minus all the chirping from my 4 year old.

When we get to the second hole Frank says his club is too long and can he have a shorter one.  I’m all empathizing.  I know what it’s like to play a foreign course without you own sticks.  I don’t want to run back to the front cause it would absolutely freaking kill me if people behind us then got in front of us.  And yeah I’m like this on a real golf course too.  But saints be praised, the little shack has a side window that opens to the third tee box.  So I stick my face in, literally 4.2 feet from the putters and ask for the shortest one they have.

“Yes, but you have to come around front.”

“Really?”

“Yes, you have to come around front.”

(well WTH) – said in my head… I think.

I get to the front.

“Sorry security cameras are only up front.”

What.  What the world is she blathering about?  Then it hits me, she has to hand me the club in view of the camera.

“Really?”

“Yes”

“You think I want to steal this rubber stick with piece of crappy rubber glued on the end of it?”

Blank stare.

Ok then.  Back to the golf.

Even with the shorter putter Frank was struggling a bit.  So I mistakenly offered a little help.  It was quickly rebuffed and rebuked with a stern “I can do it myself!”

Ok then. Back to the golf.

Next hole I drop the pencil and scorecard while Frank is on the tee.  I look down then look up.  He had already hit.  I don’t see his ball.

“Ahh Frank. Where is your ball?  Did you hit it over the side?”

Blank stare.

Cave where hole in one took place.  Forever known as the Cave of Ridicule.

Cave where hole in one took place. Forever known as the Cave of Ridicule.

“Frank!  Where is your ball!”

“It’s in the hole daddy.”  Said with the attitude of, “Well Stevie Wonder, had you been paying attention instead of playing tidily winks with the pencil you would have witnessed my hole in one.”

“What?”

“It’s in the hole daddy.”  He runs to the flag, reaches his little grimy mitt in the cup and pulls out his ball.  Crap, this is gonna cost me. “Your turn daddy.  See if you can hit it in the hole.”  Not even close.  The laughter that erupted from Frank’s belly could probably be heard in France.  “You didn’t make it daddy.  Mine went in the hole, but yours is way over there.”

We get to the next tee and I’ll I hear is, “Let me show you how to do it daddy.”  And when I don’t make a hole in one, “You need to try harder daddy.”

Gonna be a long back nine.

The fun didn’t end there.  After the 18th hole we end up back at the shack with the high security system.  Instead of handing your ball back, you put it in this Plinko like thing. (look it up)  The ball bounces around on the pegs as it makes it’s way to the bottom.  If it goes in the middle slot you get a free game.  It didn’t appear like anything happened if it missed the middle slot.

Wrong.

Mouth always open, noise always coming out.

Mouth always open, noise always coming out.

Frank is standing in front of the thing putting his ball and mine into the game.  I’m over his left shoulder.  He was supposed to get the blast of water in the face not me.  But since he’s no taller than a munchkin, or a hobbit for you younger folk, the water went right over his head and hit me in the face.  And since he put both balls in at the same time and both missed, I got two blasts of water in rapid succession before I knew what was happening.

Had Frank not been there my response may have been slightly different.  But I was oh so glad to give the good folk of Avalon NJ a hearty chuckle.

Frank, well he was laughing so hard he tooted.

Love that kid.