Fatherhood My Experiences as a Father...
July 5 to August 4, 2003 (51st month)

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Saturday, August 2, 2003
Jill pulled the chain out of the ceiling fan pull chain switch.  Today I took Maeve and Hilde to the store to buy a replacement switch.  I told them we could also buy a new ornament for the end of the chain.  I showed them everything, including porcelain, glass, wood, etc.  When I got to the end, I asked which one they wanted.  Maeve picked one of the first ones that I pointed out, a basketball.  Hilde yelled, "Ball, ball, ball".  I said Jill might not want a basketball in her kitchen, but they had made up their minds.

Hilde helped me hang up the basketball.  Once Jill saw it she said, "Didn't you think to tell them that a basketball wouldn't fit in in my kitchen?"   I told her that I had.

Tuesday, July 29, 2003
Our pool is still cool enough that Maeve and Hilde end up shivering long before they are ready to get out of the pool.  We keep telling Maeve that her lips are blue when that happens.  Today we told Maeve that it was time to get out because she was too cold.  She said she was warming up, and that she felt her lips turning pink.

Thursday, July 24, 2003
Maeve and Hilde were sitting around the table and they started chanting something that sounded like "bloobies".  I said there were no bloobies, unless Jill had a blue bra.  I had Maeve go ask Jill if she had a blue bra.  It turns out Jill had just bought one.  Maeve, Hilde and I went into Hilde's room while Jill put it on, so no one would tell Jill what we were up to.  When Jill came in, Maeve and Hilde yelled, "Bloobies!" and laughed hysterically.

Since then, every time that Hilde sees the blue bra, she yells, "Bloobies" and laughs and laughs and laughs.

Saturday, July 19, 2003
Jill slept in this morning, so Maeve and I made breakfast.  Maeve said she wanted to make scrambled eggs.  I asked if she wanted to make them green, like in "Green Eggs and Ham".  We could use food coloring.  She said food coloring was for frosting, and not eggs.  I showed her the front of the food coloring package that says, "Food coloring and egg dye".  That convinced her.  I put blue coloring in, and they turned out a nice pastel mint green.

Friday, July 18, 2003
Today Jill stopped at Dunkin' Donuts to get a coffee, and she bought some doughnuts for Maeve and Hilde.  Hilde was about to fall asleep, but Jill knew that if she did that she wouldn't go back to sleep for her nap when they got home.  To keep Hilde awake, Jill kept saying, "Hilde has a doughnut".  Maeve said, "Mom, Hilde can't have the doughnut until we get home.  That is teasing, and teasing isn't nice."

Tuesday, July 15, 2003
Today there was a bus taking people from the nursing home to the grocery store.  Maeve said that only kids are supposed to ride on school buses, and Jill explained what the bus was.

Tonight Jeanne watched Maeve and Hilde while Jill and I were out.  Maeve said they were going to play "nursing home".  Everyone went into Hilde's room, and Maeve brought in books and a pretend snack.  She showed Jeanne what there was to read, and gave Jeanne a tour of the nursing home.  After a while Jeanne asked if she could watch a movie.  Maeve said that in the nursing home you can't watch a movie unless you are "65 and almost dead".

Friday, July 11, 2003
Maeve complained today that she didn't get night snack last night.  She didn't get night snack because she wanted to read a book, and went to bed without asking for a snack.  Today, Maeve's story is that she left us a note to remember to give her night snack, but that we hadn't read it.  She said she would leave us a note every night.

Thursday, July 10, 2003 - 10th Wedding Anniversary
Jill has been telling me for over a year and a half that she wanted "the engagement ring she never got" on our 10th anniversary.  Today she got it.

I had empty boxes from matching jewelry, and a card.  I put everything in its own padded, numbered envelope and put them in the playroom.  As soon as I walked into the kitchen Maeve asked me where the ring was.  I told Maeve that I needed her help.  I asked her to go get the first envelope, and then the second, etc.  Jill didn't get the ring until envelope #4.  I felt bad for Maeve, because with every envelope starting with the first one, she would run in the room yelling, "Ring, ring, ring, mom, ring ...", and it took 4 envelopes to get the ring.

Tuesday, July 8, 2003 - Pennsylvania Vacation
We had a lot of packing to do, because we did a pretty good job of moving into the vacation house in just a few days.  We had lots of food in the kitchen, Maeve and Hilde had toys all over, and all of the clothes were either in the drawers or the closets.

We met Becky in the morning and we went to the Sturgis Pretzel House in Lititz.  It claims to have been the first commercial pretzel bakery in the United States.

We had a picnic at a park in town, and Maeve and Hilde played and fed ducks with Steven.  Maeve even pushed Hilde in the swing a little.

On the way home we stopped at a pottery store to get some souvenirs and gifts.  Then we went to the Strasburg Railroad.  We walked through Reading Car 10, a turn-of-the-century “mansion on wheels” for railroad tycoons and dignitaries.  There was a miniature steam engine, and we even got to see the full size steam engine pulling into the station.

We drove over to the Red Caboose Motel, saw some Amish kids working on a farm, and got stopped at the railroad crossing by the Strasburg Railroad steam train.

After all of this, we went back and loaded everything into the van.  We dropped off Becky's pack 'n play and a fan, and left for home.  It took almost exactly 6 hours.  Unlike the trip down, we made excellent time on the way back.  We averaged 62.5 MPH.  There was only one quick bathroom stop.  Maeve woke up to fuss for about 10 minutes at the NY/CT border, and Hilde woke up for 10 minutes of fussing about halfway through Rhode Island.  Other than that, it was an excellent trip home.  I'm pretty sure it wouldn't have been so good to have left Wednesday mid-afternoon.

Monday, July 7, 2003 - Pennsylvania Vacation
Today we went to Hershey.  We took the tour of Chocolate World.  Maeve remembered there were free chocolates at the end.

We rode the Hershey Trolley, and then went to the Hershey Museum.  The Ciscos had a membership at the museum, so they let us use that.  The museum had the specifications for the Hershey's Kisses street lights, the history of the trolleys, history of the town, and a display about Hershey's sugar plantation holdings in Cuba.

We had dinner with the Ciscos.  We talked while the kids played, until it was obvious that all of the kids were ready for bed.

Maeve and Hilde hadn't been behaving in the car on the short trips from the hotel or house to wherever we were touring for the day.  They keep taking everything from each other, and fuss either when something is taken away from them or when they have to give something back.  Maeve keeps asking when we will be where we are going.  Jill and I have had enough.  We had planned to go home on Wednesday afternoon, but instead we are going to leave Tuesday evening, and drive at night.  We've made a list of things we wanted to get done, and we'll get to everything on Tuesday.   If we can drive while the kids are asleep, it should only take 6 hours to get home.

Sunday, July 6, 2003 - Pennsylvania Vacation
Jill left for a long lunch with Becky, and I went for a walk with Maeve and Hilde.  There were some walking trails on the farm.  We saw a very old pony.  Maeve and Hilde also found a bunch of spent fireworks casings that had fallen back on the path.

Jill and I went out for an early 10th anniversary dinner.  The restaurant was very fancy.  I don't appreciate that kind of thing, but Jill had a great time being pampered.

Saturday, July 5, 2003 - Pennsylvania Vacation
Today we got a map of Sesame Place and found out what we had missed the first day.  We also looked at the show schedule.  We went to one music show, and then we went to a pretend taping of "Elmo's World".  I think the real Mr. Noodle is a big dork, but I liked the college kid they had playing the part at Sesame Place.

By mid-afternoon it was pretty crowded, we were hot and everyone was tired.  We left for Strasburg.  We went out to dinner with Becky and Rob and saw some kind of hot air balloon festival by the restaurant.  We stayed in a guest house on a farm, and the owners put on their own fireworks show.  Maeve really enjoyed it.  She kept screeching, and saying it was "amazing".

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