I have 25 minutes to write a blog. I’m just going to write and see what happens.

Little kids. I’ve been kind of in denial about how much time and attention my daughters need. Before I was married, I had new dads tell me how rewarding it was to come home from work have his kids greet him at the door with gleeful cheers and hugs. Yes, that does happen and it is heartwarming for those precious 15 seconds.

What happens for the next 60 minutes is a mess. Imagine me holding a little girl  in both of my arms because I just scooped them both up on my way out of the garage and into the house. I am then expected to visit with them both and entertain them both–at the same time. Actually, that only happens for a few minutes until something crazy goes down…

  • …like the day when Stella slapped me in the nose and my eyes water…
  • …so I put Norah down to try to get a game started for both of them and then she flipped out like I abandoned her at a dirty bus stop…
  • …so I picked up Norah and then put down Stella–then Stella acted shocked and very disappointed in me. She marched out of the room in stunned silence, squatted in far side of the house and cried out her despair. Then she flopped down on her belly and rubbed her face into the tile floor…
  • …so I carried Norah over and try to console Stella together. I leaned over to pick her up and Norah got nervous that I might put her down, so she lifted up her feet to avoid the inevitable planting on the floor. I lost my balance and wobbled around and lost my flip-flop and ended up stepping on Stella’s hand…
  • …Stella screamed more…
  • …Chef Candyce left the kitchen to see what all the commotion is about. I’m too flustered to even explain the situation.


Different versions of this “Daddy’s home!” scene plays out each day. But from my point of view, it all feels the same: chaotic.

It’s ironic. A courtship between a guy and a girl is all about being charming and composed. The wedding day beams with grace and dignity. Then a few years later you welcome this beautiful baby into your life. And that’s when the composure comes unraveled. Outside of the house, I’m put together pretty well, but inside the house, I am a mighty bull that gets wrangled to the ground by two hyperactive monkeys.

Toys. I had this quaint idea about kids and their toys. I would select a few fine toy from some designer online toy boutique. Then Norah would fall in love with the toys and care for and adore them because they are her prized possessions. Her little friends would look forward to coming over because Norah had unique and inspired toys that made them feel unique and inspired. Plus clean up would be easy because it’s just about putting the three toys on the bent-wood Eames shelf in Norah’s play studio. (I don’t think that Ray and Charles made a bent-wood shelf, but somehow this made its way into my fantasy.)

So far, this toy fantasy hasn’t happened at all.

Play food. I have fresh produce in three varieties. Let’s talk about apples. I have a hollow plastic apple, a polyester plush apple, and a crack your skull wood apple. Now imagine every other fruit and vegetable with those same varieties. It looks like a grocery store semi-truck jack knifed and flipped in my living room, spilling 1000s of food items onto my floor.

Dolls. I live in an orphanage of baby dolls. Without exaggeration, I think there are 30 baby dolls in my house. Maybe 50, if you count the ones stored carefully in the airtight plastic bins in the garage.

Barbie. Somehow the boomin bods of Barbie and friends showed up on my living room floor. Candyce explained that the girls needed some toys for their new plastic play pool. So she grabbed a couple mermaids off the shelf on her way out of the toy store. But these aren’t just sweet mermaids like little Ariel, these are sexy babe Barbies. I have nothing political or abrasive to say about tan Barbie and her tan friends. They can be hot if they want to, but they showed up in my house about 5 years too early. And this bothers me.

Okay, 25 minutes is up.