All posts tagged: temper tantrums

9 Helpful Suggestions for Partners of Stay-at-Home Parents

Having commiserated for hours with every other stay-at-home parent (SAHP) on the playground, I’ve learned my complaints about the “home front” are the same as every other stay-at-home parent (SAHP). Since we SAHPs are on the same page, this helpful list is for our partners to help our families stay happy. (Cuz when SAHP’s happy, the family’s happy.) Please, partner parents: avoid saying the following… 1. “Wow. The place is kind of a mess.” Really? I’ve cleaned the apartment three times, already. Those trains have been in and out of baskets twice, those Legos have been constructed and deconstructed thrice. I used 7 of my normally-inconsequential 22 minutes of decompression during nap-time to CLEAN. Meanwhile, do you have any idea where the race cars even go? It’s not my fault you haven’t adapted to stepping on Thomas the Train barefoot without whining…like a baby. Instead of commenting, how about quietly grabbing the kitchen spray and wiping down the table, yourself…while entertaining the kids. I’ll be doing shots on the john. 2. “What did you do …

Thomas the Train Rage

Well that blew. It was our “Day Out With Thomas”, when a rail-riding, full-size “Thomas the Train” visits sleepy train stations with operable train tracks. In our case, the Essex, CT, train station attaches some coaches to a locomotive, followed by Thomas, and makes a 20-minute trip to the local dump, and then back to the station. Last year, our trip was idyllic. Ellison bounced along to the songs during the ride, thrilled at hugging a dressed-up “Sir Topham Hat” and riding a jankety fair rides dotting the parking lot. This year’s day out started out euphorically. For the entirety of our fifteen minute drive, Ellison chanted, “I want to ride Thomas!” The cuteness drove me crazy. At the station entrance, he skipped and chanted, “I’m so excited to see Thomas! Hooray!” I love it when he talks like he’s reading a “Dick and Jane” book. Colton was equal parts confused and excited. We cheered Thomas’ arrival from the previous trip to the dump. As we proceeded toward the boarding area, Ellison noticed a table …

Parentood is Easy: 3 Rules

PARENTS! (Yes, I am YELLING at YOU!) Parenthood is easy. The nuts and bolts of parenting are simple. Below are the rules to avoid raising an emperor who ruins your life and annoys me at Starbucks. Get these basics down, and then you can deal with what makes parenthood enjoyable (as opposed to barely tolerable.) FOLLOW THROUGH (I had to yell this one.) If you say, “Timmy, don’t do X, or we will have to do Y” you best be ready to follow through with play Y. IF YOU DON’T FOLLOW THROUGH WITH PLAN Y, YOU’RE SETTING YOURSELF UP TO BECOME A HUMAN TREADMILL FOR A TYRANT. It drives me nuts to hear open threats in public. “If you don’t stop throwing truffle cavatelli, Bunky, you won’t get to watch Real Housewives, on my iPhone.” (And two seconds later, Bunky is watching the iPhone. Because the parents gave up.) “Don’t puncture the heirloom tomatoes, Bordeaux, or you won’t get an heirloom cookie.” (And two stalls later at the farmer’s market, mischievous Bordeaux sports gluten-full crumbs …

SON, DADDY SCREWED UP

Remember when Ellison and I were “dressed from the future?” Well, on our return from that trip, standing in the security line, Ellison melted down. It was understandable. He hadn’t napped. I withered in front of the French travelers tsk-tsk’ing me with masterful condescension. No sympathy for this dad traveling alone with a kid. I’d held off giving him his pacifier until absolutely necessary. It was now absolutely necessary. Frantically I searched the diaper bag, but I found only one pacifier. I’d lost four over the trip. This one happened to be a newborn pacifier: for Ellison’s newborn brother. Uh-oh. I handed it to him. He looked at it and chucked it across three lanes of security traffic. I ducked under dividers, between people and started to sweat profusely. I offered the paci, again. He took it, looked at it, screamed and tried to throw it, but I swiped it back. He swung his hand toward mine and successfully knocked it away. Again I crawled between French people to retrieve the paci. Mercifully, we soon …