Wednesday, July 14, 2010

More from Daddy Daycare

The following is a letter I sent recently to the Cracker Barrel corporate office:

On a recent trip from Wilmore, KY to Alexander City, AL, my wife, our one-year-old twins and I stopped at a Cracker Barrel outside of Nashville. We knew the restaurant was equipped with baby changing tables, and that the store was kid-friendly. What we didn’t know was how much everyone in our family would enjoy the stop.
In order to understand how exceptional our meal was, you need to know that our daughter is the pickiest eater I have ever encountered. She eats so little, and has such a limited palate that some days she will only eat oatmeal and Cheerios. Our son would eat a tire if seasoned properly, so we knew he’d enjoy it.

We ordered a veggie plate for them to split. They like to eat with their hands. Not only did they polish off the veggies, but they also ate from our plates as well: carrots, corn, apples, chicken, peas, macaroni and cheese, and, of course, biscuits and cornbread. They devoured the food. A lot of it ended up on the floor, but, like I said, they’re only one.

A dozen wet wipes later, we took them into the country store to check out the toys, apologizing to the waitress for the mess. They really got a kick out of the little dogs that walk on their own.

After the meal, they slept like champs.

On the trip home a week later, we stopped the Barrel again with similar results.

Thank you for making a 400 mile road trip with twin toddlers not only bearable, but fun.
Who knows? Maybe I'll get a coupon or something. We used to get to Aimee's mom's house in about seven hours. Our first trip with the babies took 10 hours. This last one was somewhere in between. The stop at the Barrel was good for everyone, though.

The 'bama trip was fun, with relatively little screaming in the car. The worst part was Central Standard Time. The time change had us up anywhere from 4 a.m. to 5:30 a.m. every day.

Keillor lounges with his mommy

In Alex City, the kids went swimming every day. Keillor even tried to actually swim, but like a Mau, he sunk. One afternoon, Keillor snuggled up to his mommy in a pool lounger. I think that was Aimee's best hour of the whole trip. They also got to wander around Grammy and PawPaw Dee's big yard. Keillor got a scrape on his knee when he fell. We rubbed some dirt in it and told him to shake it off.
In an attempt to win her brother's vacated senate seat, Emaline poses with the American flag.
In a trip within a trip, the twins got to see their great grandparents in Alabaster (the city, not the rock).
They also got to visit with GaGa, GeGe, Cousin Seth, Aunt Rita, and Uncle Joseph--we sure sound Jewish, don't we? Is that rude? Emaline played with GeGe's antique toy piano, which apparently is no longer a toy. Oops.

Emaline at a seafood restaurant on Lake Martin

Playing in the pool with their cousin Seth requires no water.
Keillor goes grocery shopping in Grammy's giant yard, while Emaline cares for her empty stroller

Summer with Daddy continues with many food experiments. Today they ate an entire plum. Yesterday they had Lima beans for the first time. They also had Muenster cheese and spicy black bean burgers. Still, for some reason, their favorite food lately has been infant oatmeal. Go figure.
Today we made a trip to Wal-Mart. I wasn't sure how I was going to cart them around, but we found a cart that holds two kids. It kind of looks like a love toilet from SNL painted blue and attached to the cart. It is also for children ages 2-6. Since it was the only thing available, and even though one of the straps was broken, I told the kids to tell anyone who asked that they were two. They had a ton of fun. One lady said, "It's so nice to see a man taking care of the kids." I told her, "That's what my husband says." OK, so I didn't say that, but I should have.

They are learning all kinds of tricks. Some of them I may have already shared.
Trick # 26: Slamming fingers in cabinets with a child lock.
Trick # 27: Pulling the drain out of the tub
Trick # 28: Stealing food from each others mouths (that one just happened when Emaline put her hand in Keillor's mouth, removed an animal cracker that he had shoved in there, and ate it herself).
Trick # 29: (also today) Stepping off the lower deck and experiencing a greater appreciation for gravity.
Trick # 16: Eating dirt.

Emaline is mastering "bye bye." Keillor has learned "nana." He kept yelling it at me and pointing to the banana on the counter. We'll see if it sticks.
They are also becoming little acrobats. Emaline has pulled herself off the floor by grabbing onto the table. She is also quite the tumbler. As I type this, she is behind me with her head on the ground and her butt in the air. A few minutes ago, Keillor was doing the same thing and the kitchen was filled with a sour outhouse smell.

Shoes have also been an adventure lately. It's no secret that Keillor is the bastard son of Barney Rubble. This has made finding shoes that fit him nearly impossible. When your feet are as wide as they are long, maybe slipper socks are the best bet.

Still no consistent walking from Keillor, but the other day when I dropped him off at daycare, he walked back to me--at least six steps. When he realized what he was doing, he fell. Now that Emaline is faster than he is, he may have to figure this walking thing out once and for all.

Keillor takes a break from singing in the tub to pose for the camera.

Finally, while playing in the tub, Keillor launched a depth charge--three, actually--that necessitated the immediate evacuation of all toys. We should have seen it coming when he earlier sounded his underwater air horn with great vigor.

People ask me how I find time to blog when I am home with the kids three days a week. I have two words for you: benign neglect.


  1. Hahaha!!! I almost died laughing. There's a good chance Barney Rubble fathered Carter as well (though I don't seem to remember the encounter). We can hardly put socks on the poor kid.

  2. PS: The picture of Emaline sitting at the table at the seafood restaurant is hysterical. She looks incredibly intense. They must not be replenishing her 2% at an acceptable rate.