A Little Color in Life

Note: Photos in this post by Benjamin, with his Fisher Price Kid Tough Digital Camera (generation one model).

Ben's Mommy 2008-05-28

My Blurry Mommy, by Benjamin

It’s strange, having nine days off work in a row and nowhere to go. We could have gone to Spain, England, France, or all of the above. Heck, we live in a border state; we could have gone to Mexico.

But, this site is called Regular Life, not Fancy Life or Extravagant Life or even We Saved Up a Long Time for This and Now We Can Do It Life.

Instead, this week we could re-title it We’re Not Going Anywhere, So We Might As Well Finally Paint Some Walls Life. Yes, after nearly three years living in the same house (a new record for us!) we’re leaving behind the off-white flat latex paint. Or covering it up, rather.

When my lovely wife took a break from slathering the paint all over herself, that is.

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On Guard, Scallywag

On Guard

Besmirch not my mommy’s name.
(click to enlarge, or walk the plank)

In Tulsa last weekend, my favorite time was one cool morning playing with Benjamin in the front yard. He picked up a couple black plastic stakes advertising the lawn service Shannon’s uncle uses, and following his lead we pretended they were swords. We fake fenced a bit and then he mimicked pulling a trigger and fake shot me. If this disturbs you, then get ready — kids love to pretend to shoot.

Figuring I didn’t want to bring a knife to a gunfight, I pulled my sword’s imaginary trigger and did my best vocal impression of a Star Wars blaster.

“No, daddy, your sword can’t shoot. Only mine can shoot.”

I laughed. “Well, that doesn’t seem quite fair, son.”

Our time reminded me that weather can be pleasant in May and that our four-year-old boy (sneaking up on five) thrives outdoors.

While we can’t offer him the wooded environs of my childhood, I am glad that his first question when I get home from work is, “Can we go outside and play, Daddy?”

The poor kid. He got pretty much the same skin his old man has, so all of that outside time comes with a price. Sunscreen. Lots and lots of sunscreen.

For one morning in Tulsa, however, we didn’t have to worry about such things. We were just father and son in the front yard, battling like pirates.

Aurally Yours

If you normally spend between four and five minutes reading here, then today is your big break.

You get to spend about the same amount of time listening, because I’m offering up a hodgepodge of clips that help paint a sonic portrait of what goes on in our lives. No, it isn’t just a bunch of cutesy kid stuff (he said, knowing that the first and last clips are exactly that).

First up, Benjamin talks on the phone to his only first cousin. This clip is compressed for time, because the sound of Benjamin listening isn’t very compelling. But the Star Wars stuff is. (0:16)

The next two clips capture unexpected (and loud) moments during dinner preparation, when we forgot the recorder was running.

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Tickets for Trinkets (Pic of the Week)

(Note: Yesterday’s post was my 700th published. About 60 days short of three years doing this, I figure that’s one post every 1.4 days.)

Before the thievery on Saturday, there was a windfall of epic proportions.

Sometimes, you just get lucky.

You’ll recall that we were at a place featuring games that spit out tickets rewarding success. I neglected to mention the reason behind Shannon’s vehemence in getting back her swiped tokens. It all ties in with today’s topic — hoarding.

We had tried to convince Benjamin at the first party that he should save his mere 190 tickets (the bulk of those awarded for attending) and combine them with what he would win that evening. For a not-quite-five year-old, that’s a distant probability, and it’s a pipe dream amidst the mob of his peers bombarding the prize counter.

Ticket MongerConsidering the theft earlier in the day, I’m tempted to say that fate turned the tables for Benjamin that night. Whatever the reason, a game gone berserk buried him in tickets during the second birthday party. More than 840, to be nearer precise. (photo courtesy of Alvis)

Naturally, in the face of a major win we wanted more for our boy. Shannon pushed her Skee-ball lane to its limit while I played a variation on the theme. That’s when the infamous swiper swooped.

When redeeming his fake money for chintzy prizes, Benjamin chose a pretty cool helicopter that flies very well after its ripcord is pulled. Plus a whoopee cushion — because once he saw kids using one at the first party, nothing could stand in his way of getting his own. The helicopter is rated for children ages 8 and up, probably due to the considerable length of 25-lb. test line* on the retractable ripcord assembly and the fast chopping action of the blades. We didn’t think of that until the teen behind the prize counter had handed it over to Ben.


Once a brain gets high on hoarding, there’s no telling what it might miss.

* This is a fishing reference, a rarity here that you’ll not likely see again soon.

Near the Potty Mouth

(force a refresh to see May’s banner)

Surprised Benjamin

(click to enlarge)


I sit at our home PC typing a blog post or some such nonsense. On one of her nights to put Benjamin to bed, Shannon walks into the guest bathroom to assess his teeth brushing progress. I hear them talking to each other, but can’t make out the words.

Until Shannon gasps and says, “Benjamin!”

She then dashes across the hall into the guest/computer room and covers her mouth to stifle laughter.

“Did you hear him?” she says through her hand.

“No, what did he say?”

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