Archive for January, 2009

I received a lot of support, and visits to my post regarding my daughter and her disappearing eyelashes. I felt a brief update was needed as a result.

Since I posted that column, we have met with the pediatrician about Kelley’s eyelash pulling problem.  Although she is extroverted and appears very happy, we agreed that a visit to a phychologist was a prudent next step. 

We are doing this to make sure that we aren’t missing something that is upseting her, or leading to stress she doesn’t know how to manage at her young age.

We have a number of child-phychologist references which my wife is researching, in order to  set up an appointment in the near future.

I’ll update you with the findings.

Thanks again for all your kind emails, and comments. I appreciate all the advice.


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These are my random thoughts for this week:

1) Did you see the news report, that Ty Inc has released 12 inch plush dolls modeled after Sasha and Malia Obama? Are you kidding me? I think the toy manufacturer is crossing the line, and is taking advantage of these children.  It doesn’t matter who their parents are, this is ethically wrong.  Needless to say, the First Lady is not pleased.





2) I think that President Obama has made an interesting point.  In his inaugural speech, he stated that Parenting is a Public Service.  If I correctly understand him, he’s saying good parenting is essential for the health of our country.  This is a concept that intrigues me. Why? I never thought of parenting as a public service, rather a very personal one.  Is his statement similar, or in support of, Hilary Clinton’s “It Takes a Village” book / concept?  Or is there another point he is trying to make?
I think he needs to clarify this further in the near future.

3) I think that the Monster Truck Deaths which have occurred in the last month are inexcusable.  Did you read where a 6 year old boy died in Tacoma Washington, from debris that came off one of the trucks? Last weekend, a promoter was run over by one of the trucks in Wisconsin during an event.  What is the point of having these events in the first place?  Is it because I don’t live in a trailer park, that I don’t get it?
I think Monster Truck events need to be banned, or heavily regulated by the government.

4) I think that parents can now give themselves permission to say “no” to there children, and stop spoiling them (me included). In the back of all our minds, we all know that overindulging children can cause behavioral issue in the future.  But, it is sooooooooo hard to tell your pleading 6 year old girl that she can’t have the Sasha Obama doll she just walked by in the store.  I believe that its time to stop sheltering our children, and let them know that money’s tight right now.  It’s the right thing to do, for your finances and your children.

5) I think you need to check out the “New-Dad-Blog” (see link under Blogs I Visit), if you haven’t already.  Even if you aren’t a “new” Dad, this Blog will take you back to what it was like.  He and his wife are slowly coming up on the Big Day.  Check it out, its worth a read.  

6) This week, Caterpiller, Pfizer, Sprint, Home Depot and GM announced layoffs.  I think our Congress needs to stop bickering, put in some overtime, and get a stimulus bill to the President asap.  The longer they waffle, the worse its going to get.

7) I think this guy needs to be locked away for a long, long time:  Jeramey Sheeler of Vaughn Montana faces charges of leaving his 4 year old daughter in his car for hours in 14 degree weather.  The worst part is, that he was inside a house, with a 13 year old girl until 2am (alone) while his 4 year old was outside in the car. He was  charged with feloney criminal indangerment AND a misdemeanor possession of drug paraphernal (yes, to top it off he is into drugs). Link –



I think that’s it for this addition of “Seven Things I Think I Think”

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Since Kelly turned six, something very odd has started to occur.  My wife and I noticed that her eye-lashes were thinning out.  When we asked her what was happening, we orignally got the typical “I don’t know”.

We are now at the point that she has little or no eye lashes left on the bottom of her eyes.

 My little girl


This, as you can see, makes her look very pale.  We finally discovered, that the reason for this is NOT do to a rare disease or a dysfunctional gene that she may have inheritied from me.

  She just started pulling them out on her own – out of curosity.  The problem is, they started to itch and burn; therefore, she naturally started pulling out more of them.

This has been going of for several weeks.  No matter what we say to her, she ends up plucking more eyelashes out at some point during the week.  My girl looks more and more pale as a result…………..Albino “like”, if you will.

Out of frustration, Peggy called me at work today.  She insisted that we take Kelley to a Phychologist! She doesn’t believe that a doctor could be of  any help at this point. And, that it must be some mental or stress issue.

I need some help on this one!  Advice, suggestion and opinions would be appreciated. Please leave a comment with your thoughts………and thanks.

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Soccer Dad

 It’s late January.  It’s 6:00pm on a Friday evening, and I am standing on the sidelines watching my son run through drills with  twelve other boys and a professional trainer.  He’s wearing shorts and a pull over, and barely notices that its 35 degrees outside.

Soccer has become my 9 year olds favorite thing.  Bud’s biggest concern in life, is making the “Select Team” in May.  To that end, he wants to go to every training camp offered in order to be ready for try outs.


If not this year, surely next, I will no longer be his recreational league soccer coach.  I will instead join the legion of Soccer Dad’s and Mom’s who spend there weekends traveling to soccer tournaments with their kids and their select teams.  I will watch his coach’s closely, to insure they are keeping things in perspective, while supporting him the best I can.


Gone are the days when kids can play 3 or 4 sports during the year.  Increasingly, they must choose one sport because it is a year round commitment.  Bud’s soccer season starts in May, and will run until November or December if he makes it on the select team.  He will then, like the other select kids, spend January through March going from soccer camp to soccer camp in order to improve and make the following years team.


I worry that this is just too much for any child. Like any parent, I’m concerned about his reaction if he doesn’t make the team.  I  also worry about Bud burning out on Soccer before he reach’s the age of fifteen. 


But, he clearly understands that this is what it will take to make the better teams.  He not only accepts it, he loves it.


So here I am, standing in the cold watching him practice.   He’s starting that transition from a little boy to a Tweener (the age just before the teenage years).  Before I know it, he will be a better soccer player than I ever was as a teenager.  That’s how it should be.


So I’m just trying to soak it all in, and insure that I am supportive enough before he’s all grown up and out on his own. 


Such is the life of a Soccer Dad.



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It’s just a theory, but you never know.

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Here are my random thoughts for this week:

 1) Blogging can consume you and your time.  NEVER check your site during the work day, or you will get sucked in and kill 2 hours that should be spent on your job.

2) I think that my 6 year old daughter, Kelly, is the toughest kid in the house.  She may be the youngest, but she never flinches when she falls or skins up her knee.  My 9 year old son, Bud, tends to whine and complain with every papercut he gets.  I love him – but toughen up!

3) I think that the recent announcement that 32% of americans are Obese, is disturbing.  We now have more obese people in the USA,  than over-weight people.  As an over-weight person, I’m happy that I’m now in the minority (i.e. 32% of you are obese, 38% of you are at the proper weight, and the rest of us are apart of the 30% over-weight group). I have hope of moving into the “majority” by summer time.   But still – when will we learn to give up our Big Mac’s and go for a walk instead?

4)  I think the expectations for President Obama are too high.  I applaud his approach for us to take responsibility for correcting our economic climate. However, there is no magic wand. We are in for a 2-3 year recessionary period. I hope we never lose faith in his leadership as a result.  

5) I think that today’s announcement, that Microsoft is laying off five thousand employees (1,400 of them today), is further evidence that the economy is in serious trouble.  When the Evil Empire lets 7% of its solders go, you know it’s going to be a long year.

6) I think I under estimated how much damage a 6 month old Dog (Buck – our Westie), can do to your yard.  Westie’s are described as “Earth Dogs”.  Little did I know that I would have a half dozen holes in my yard, where he has dug up the lawn in pursuit of something that has tickled his nose. 

7) I think Kelly is headed for a huge meltdown, if the ban on Peanut Butter isn’t lifted soon.  This is a little girl that insists that she will ONLY eat peanut butter sandwich’s. Each day this week, she has refused to eat her school lunch because it has contained a turkey or ham sandwich.  I never thought that peanut butter was an addicting drug.

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At what point in my life did it become my genetic responsibility to fix any and all broken items in my home? After all, there is no special skills required to replace a light bulb.

Inevitably, when I walk in the door from work; there is a Leapster that needs batteries, a dis-membered doll that needs attention, or a  home printer that needs ink.

Don’t get me wrong, I have a huge appreciation for the job my wife does at home during the day.  But a light bulb?

Where in the wedding vows did it stipulate that only men can handle these fix it tasks? 

I can understand a women’s complaint, if her husband doesn’t  replace the toilet paper, clean up his beard clippings from the sink, or leaves empty milk cartons in the refrigerator.

Those items fall into the general criteria of keeping your wife sane and happy. 

But I must have missed something about equality between partners, when the subject of home maintenance came up.

As I have said before, I am not the handyman type.  Everytime I touch a plumbing problem, it turns into an episode from “Tool Time”.  I’m definitely the “Tim the tool man Taylor” type, who thinks he knows what he’s doing – but always screws it up.  I may look more like Al Borland, but I don’t have a clue when it comes to plumbing or electrical work.  That’s why I’m outsourcing the repair of my fence (see previous post).

At the very least, these “requests” always makes my arrival home from work unpredictable.

After all, just because I have power tools, it doesn’t mean I can fix anything. 

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