Ebert and Roeper would give me a "Thumbs Down"

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bored T his weekend, even CareerMom, from whom patience springs forth like the water in Niagara Falls after the winter thaw, had seemingly “gotten over” the constant entertainment requirements of our children. Thanks in no small part, I feel, to Daycare and the constant entertainment provided there, as soon as the kids get home at night, and from the moment they wake up on the weekends, it’s, “What are going to do now?” “Can we go swimming?” “Well, when CAN we go swimming?” “Can I have a snack?” “Well, when CAN I have a snack?”

I tell ya, it’s enough to drive you nuts! Especially when you consider what our kids do today compared to what we did as children. I told MLI on Sunday that he’d done more by 11 a.m. than I did an entire weekend growing up!

When I was a child, the weekends were for “catching up.” Saturday mornings, assuming I beat everyone out of bed, consisted of my watching cartoons for about an hour and then once everyone was up, doing chores until the house was spotless. After that, if I wasn’t helping my dad with one of his many, never-ending projects around the house, I was left to go happily cruising around the neighborhood with my transistor radio hanging from my bicycle handlebars, looking for other kids in a similar plight. What ensued from there was anyone’s guess.

As a comparison, here’s our weekend with the boys:

Saturday

– Took both boys with us to the gym at 8 a.m. where they played in the huge gym play area consisting of a McDonald’s-like tunnel system, a kid’s basketball court, computers and all sorts of other things.

– I took a pain pill.
– Played with the boys outside for a while. Rode bikes, threw balls, the usual.
– I ran to Home Depot while CareerMom did something with the kids at home…dunno what…something to do with blocks and cars.
– I took a pain pill
– That afternoon, I took MLI to a Braves game, via the Atlanta MARTA system. MLI thought riding the train was pretty cool, except that we caught it at its northern most point, and it took nearly 30 minutes to get to the transfer station and by then we were both hot and bored.
– At the game, we sat down and by the time I got dinner for the both of us, it was already 8 p.m. By the top of the 3rd inning, MLI says, “Daddy, I’m already tired of looking at this!” Determined to stay for a while, we stuck it out till the 5th inning and then made the trip home.

Sunday

– We’re still in “church transition” so went to the gym again.
– Played with the boys outside for a while.
– While I killed all the plant life in the backyard (herbicide), CareerMom took the boys to the neighborhood park for a while.
– After lunch and naps, took the kids to this new indoor play area with a gy-normous foam filled pool thingy. Was pretty darned cool!
– Somewhere in all this, I took two pain pills (no really, I needed it. The stretching wasn’t working!)

The whole daggum weekend revolves around the kids! By Sunday night, even CareerMom’s nerves were getting frazzled and though we both felt bad talking sternly to the boys, even parents need a few quiet moments.

Oh, and on top of all of this, MLI had been asking for the mailman to bring the DVD “Aladdin” and so I ordered it from my Netflix account. It came on Saturday and I stuck it in the DVD on Sunday.

Aladdin

Do you see anything wrong here? Did you know that there is more than one “Aladdin” movie on DVD? I didn’t. Why would anyone even bother stocking anything other than the Disney version?

Trust me, this is NOT the Disney version.

Despite the colorful packaging, I’m pretty sure this cartoon was created sometime back in the 80s, before cartoonists began attempting to synchronize voices and mouth movements. It was bad…really bad.

So, in total, my entertainment ideas fizzled miserably this weekend and truth be told, I think we’re all a little relieved that the boys get to go to Daycare today and we adults “have” to go to work. People always tell me to “treasure this wonderful time when the kids are young,” but it’s funny how the people who tell you this, never seem to have children that young at the time of the telling. I think that by the time you’re ready to say this to someone else, you’ve long forgotten how much work it actually is.

Right now, I treasure the few moments the boys are off playing by themselves…right up until one of them steals the other’s toy, or when one of them pushes the other down and a cry-fest ensues. Those moments are GOLDEN!

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5 thoughts on “Ebert and Roeper would give me a "Thumbs Down"

    AtHomeDaddy said:
    June 23, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    I am right there with you, man.

    Fifteen minutes of the kids playing alone or together WITHOUT needing my interaction is priceless and it can make a whole day turn for the better.

    And we fell for that same Aladdin movie/hack job/con game. Sorry about that.

    RE: As it turns out, Disney has apparently frozen their Aladdin DVD too, so that you can’t even rent it!!

    El Guapo said:
    June 23, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    I could not agree with this article more… It’s like I wrote it myself…

    RE: Would you say…I have a “plethora” of posts?

    Allison said:
    June 24, 2008 at 8:12 am

    Sheesh, you covered a lot of territory with this post. I love the image of riding around with a radio hanging from your bike. My cousin did that to her bike, and I thought she was the coolest/smartest girl I had ever known. I’m very jealous about your gym’s play area for kids. Our gym has nothing like this and the workers are gum-smacking, bored-looking teens, so we never go to the gym together. Regarding the Aladdin thing, I hate generic cartoons. And generic Barbie dolls.

    RE: Yeah, this blog started out in one direction and kinda went another. The point was, “Darned kids are spoiled!”

    See, four little words and I coulda been done!

    trishatruly said:
    June 24, 2008 at 8:20 am

    I think kids need “bored” time. It’s the only way for them to really use their imagination. Remember playing “Let’s Pretend” or just looking at bugs in the yard or some such nonsense? The fact is, we DO remember and that’s significant, I think.

    My mother used to lock us kids outdoors till lunch time. Let me tell ya, if you got thirsty, you drank outa the darn hose! Did she worry about whether we got bored? Hell no.

    ( And look how well I turned out! 🙂 )

    RE: I’m of the same mind; however, here’s what happens. If I decide to personally “turn off” Daddy Entertainment Television, CareerMom jumps in. I’ve tried to get her to understand she doesn’t need to, but remember that she had a SAHM, who did nothing but entertain the kids. So, that’s what she sees as a parent’s job. Seeing as how I had parents who were quite the opposite, I see no problem with letting the kids do their own thing.

    It all comes back to “Pick your battles” right?

    trishatruly said:
    June 24, 2008 at 6:58 pm

    Absolutely! Picking battles is one sure sign of maturity. I would do absolutely the same as you .

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