Archive for the 'Family' Category
365 Days of Holden

One a day for the first year (with only one exception):


Created with Admarket’s flickrSLiDR.

Happy 1st Birthday H.

Holden's First Birthday Party

Original photo on Flickr.

a bedtime routine

4:45pm: An early dinner — homemade bread and homemade potato chowder.  H. gets a slice of the bread and some diced potato; also his sippy cup with some water.

4:46pm: H. manages to get himself wet from squirting the water all over himself.  Que sera sera. Take away the sippy cup, for now.

4:51pm: H. has chewed up about half of a palm-sized piece of sea-salt encrusted herb bread.  He doesn’t really seem to be swallowing it.  It’s just taking up space in there.  We try to coax him to spit some out without any real success.  Take away the other half of the bread to encourage him to eat the bits of potato.  Marginal success there.

4:57pm: Winding down our own dinner, we scrutinize H.’s palate again.  Much of the potato is gone from his tray, surprisingly little of it is on the floor, but he’s still got quite a bit of bread on the roof of his mouth.  We hazard a little biting and screaming while we scrape some out.  The bolus isn’t as large as a ping pong ball but it sure seems that way.

5:04pm: Clear the table.  A. takes The Boy to get cleaned up and out of his diaper.  I clear the table.

5:10pm: Start the water in the tub.  H. crawls around the house, fast as ball lightning and naked as a jaybird.

5:12pm: Drop H. in the tub.  Commence splashing.  A. retrieves the S.S. Mr. T to attempt slight abatement of splashing.

5:13pm: H. tries to hydrate by sucking bathwater from the washcloth.  Let that one go.

5:16pm: Commence actual washing of H.

5:22pm: Washing is done.  Allow H. to splash for a few more minutes.

5:25pm: Remove H. from tub, bundle up in a towel.  A. moves the drying/dressing operation into H.’s room; I drain the tub and clean up as best I can.

5:30pm: Five more minutes of naked crawling is enough, right?

5:35pm: Okay, ten minutes is enough.  Getting the diaper on is easy.  The pajamas, less so.

5:40pm: When did five whole minutes becomes “quick” for putting pajamas on an infant?

5:41pm: A. notices more bread bolus on the roof of H.’s mouth.  How did that get there?

5:42pm: Suffer a slight bite while retrieving the bolus.  If you put the two bits together, surely they add up to a ping pong ball.  It’s ridiculous, really.

5:44pm: Retrieve toothbrush.  (Side note:  has anyone else noticed that the “baby safe” toothpaste comes in a tube like model cement?  If it weren’t for the fruity smell, I’d swear they were just putting a different label on this stuff.)  Attempt to brush H.’s six teeth.  He lets me go at it for a minute or two.

5:46pm: Steal the toothbrush back from H.; the oral hygiene portion of the evening is over.

5:47pm: Kiss H. on the forehead and tip-toe out while A. nurses him (more/less) to sleep.

6:11pm: A. emerges and H.’s room is very quiet indeed.

financial planning

I came up with a plan today for how we’ll teach Holden about money.

Like many kids, he is going to get an allowance. But Papa is going to play banker along the way. Here are the details, the twist that I bring:

  1. Once Holden has gotten acquainted with adding and subtracting, he’s eligible for an allowance.  (It’s only fait that he keep his own books, right?)  The allowance comes with the usual strings attached:  a few light chores such as keeping his room clean, etc.  (Taking out heavy bags of trash comes later.)
  2. The allowance is nothing crazy or over the top — let’s say $5 per week.  Because a kid’s attention span is likely to be so short, I doubt that doing a monthly pay-out makes much sense; besides when he’s so young it doubles as a way of teaching him about days of the week (“Friday is pay day!”).
  3. The twist on pay day goes like this:  ”getting paid” is basically Monopoly Money.  We’ll keep a spreadsheet with to track his “account balance”.  Papa (as both boss and banker) has read/write access; young Holden will have read-only access to ease his mind a bit and to keep me honest.  ”Pay day” comes, we do an inventory of completed chores, and put $5 into the plus column for the week; if Holden wants cash, he’s going to have to make a withdrawal from the First National Bank of Papa’s Spreadsheet.

Not too shabby of a plan, eh?  Maybe not totally original but I think there’s some merit to it.  But as Holden hits additional milestones, we can up the ante…

  • Multiplication and division?  Got some knowledge of percentages under your belt?  Perhaps we can introduce the concept of an interest-bearing account.  And/or maybe special rates for money set aside as “savings”?
  • Ready to take on some more chores and more responsibilities?  Time to learn about salary/wage negotiation.  (If ever there are siblings, perhaps it becomes a matter of “collective bargaining“?)
  • And when it’s time to learn about things being really unfair, we can start having the ATM service charge come out of Holden’s end of the cash withdrawal, too…?
Yes. Let’s turn malnutrition into a joke.

Yes. Let's turn malnutrition into a joke.

I know there are some folks out there that would say "oh, lighten up" about something like this but I thought that this was in such incredibly poor taste. With the epidemic of childhood obesity occurring in the United States, these sorts of "cute jokes" are neither cute nor funny. The makers of this bib should be utterly ashamed of themselves. This is way worse than candy cigarettes.

Original on Flickr.