Fatherhood My Experiences as a Father...
February 5 to March 4, 2004 (58th month)

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Tuesday, March 2, 2004
Jill had to deal with a mutiny today. Maeve said she wanted the thin crayons that were on the top shelf. They are not washable, so Jill said Maeve had to use the crayons on the table. When Jill went into the living room she heard Maeve saying, "I think she should change the rules. We don't have to listen to her.  If she won't change the rules, we will say G H D B N instead of A B C D E. If she won't change the rules, we won't eat dinner..."

Hilde came running into the living room and said to Jill, "You aren't a nice lady."

Thursday, February 26, 2004
Maeve usually ends up sleeping in my bed. Usually she kicks Jill out, but sometimes she is in my spot if I come to bed too late.

Jill was driving around with Maeve and Hilde and Maeve said she wanted a bigger house. Then she wouldn't have to share a bed with me when she comes in at night and kicks Jill out. I could get my own room so Jill and I wouldn't have to share dressers and get confused about whose stuff is in which drawer. It would also let me get more clothes.

Hilde said, "No bigger house."

Sunday, February 22, 2004
Today I heard Maeve crying in the living room and I went to see what the problem was.  She and Hilde were both laying on the floor, and Maeve said that Hilde had rolled her onto a video tape, and that had hurt Maeve.  I said I didn't think that Hilde could do that because Maeve is her bigger sister.  I asked Hilde to lay still and asked Maeve to roll Hilde over.  Maeve couldn't do it.  I asked Maeve how Hilde could have rolled Maeve over if Maeve couldn't roll Hilde, and Maeve is Hilde's older sister.  Maeve claimed that Hilde was stronger.  I asked how her younger sister could be stronger than her.  She said Hilde eats more than she does, and that makes Hilde stronger.

Friday, February 20, 2004
I hear that old gasoline will gum up an engine, so my plan with the motorcycle and car in the garage is to drain the gas and replace it with fresh gas before trying to get them running again.  They have both been sitting for about two years.  The best way I could think of to dispose of the old gas once I got it out of the vehicles was to just burn it off.  I filled a bucket with gas from the motorcycle, put it in the backyard and started it on fire.  I put it close to the house so the neighbors wouldn't see a flaming bucket of gas and start asking questions, or call the fire department, or whatever.  Then I thought it was a little too close to the house, and it should be further away from the house, even if the neighbors would see it.  Rather than move it while it was still on fire and risk having a flaming river of gas going into and around my house, I tried to put a pan over the bucket.  The bucket had a handle, so the top wasn't flat, and the pan didn't smother the fire.  I ended up getting a pie tin about the size of the bucket opening, putting on my firefighter gloves, and putting the pie tin in the bucket.  That put it out.

Jill took Maeve to gymnastics practice.  When they left, the fire was still going near the house and I hadn't yet come up with the idea of the pie tin.  Jill said, "Your dad is so silly.  What are we going to do with him?"  Maeve said they could put me out with the trash.  Apparently Jill asks this question often, and the trash idea is one of Maeve's favorite responses.  Jill asked if Maeve thought the trash men would take me.  Maeve said, "Why wouldn't they take him if he's dead?"

Jill explained that she didn't want to kill me.  She just wanted me to go away with the trash men.  She then asked Maeve if maybe they could just give me away to someone else.  Maeve thought that might work.  Jill asked if they would have to tell the recipients just how silly I am.  Maeve said, "OH NO!  Then they wouldn't take him."

Wednesday, February 18, 2004
Jill was driving around Woonsocket and saw a Woonsocket Call truck.  She pointed out the newspaper truck and asked what Maeve and Hilde thought was in the newspaper today.  Maeve said, "Today in Woonsocket, there were some guys working in a deep ditch with very sandy dirt.  They didn't have anything to hold up the sides, and it caved in.  Three guys were stuck, and their friends tried to dig them out.  The rescue guys brought strong boards to hold up the sides.  When they got out, the helicopter flew them to the hospital."  Jill said, "What have you been watching with your father?" 

It sounds a lot like an episode of Critical Rescue, where four guys were laying pipe in a 12-ft deep trench in Florida.  When it collapsed, one was on top of the dirt and was able to get out with just a broken ankle.  The other three were buried, and over 70 rescuers were involved in getting them out.

Monday, February 16, 2004
Jill has some problem with me doing my own eletrical wiring. She keeps telling me about a bumper sticker she saw that said, "Wiring is not a hobby". I think it's a great hobby, as long as you do it right. I have every connection in a box, I staple the wires where they need to be stapled, I usually use wire that's at least one size larger than the minimum for the load, etc. I don't leave live wire ends exposed, I don't work on anything without both shutting off the circuit breaker AND testing it with a multimeter to make sure it's not live, etc.

We are taking a class at Home Depot on refinishing your basement. The instructor said there was no need to get an electrician to do the wiring, and told us some of the rules to follow. Given that information, I had Maeve ask Jill if she was going to do some wiring in the basement. Jill wanted to say that she wouldn't, and that wiring is not a hobby, but she didn't have any good reason to say that after the instructor said we could. That was fun to watch.

Sunday, February 15, 2004
This afternoon we came home from our weekend trip.  Jeanne's plan "to turn them" didn't seem to have worked.  There had been talk of putting up the tent to sleep in, but the tent was not used.  When Hilde saw us, she ran right to us, and pretty much ignored Jeanne until she left.

About the only thing Jeanne did accomplish was adding "fruitloop" to Maeve's and Hilde's vocabulary.  Now Jeanne is the "fruitloop wacko" and I am the "silly fruitloop".

Thursday, February 12, 2004
Today Jill, Maeve and Hilde came for lunch.  Jeanne ate with us, and Hilde spent lots of her time saying, "Go away, wacko!"  Jeanne is going to watch Maeve and Hilde this weekend, and she says she has all weekend "to turn them".  I told her that Jill has had years, and they are still Dad's "sturdy girls".

Sunday, February 8, 2004
Lately I've heard Maeve and Hilde calling Jeanne a "wacko", even though they have told me in the past that Jeanne was definitely not a wacko.

Jill and I are planning to spend a weekend away for Valentine's day this coming weekend.  This will be the first time that Jill and I have spent time away alone since Maeve was born.  Today we were talking to Maeve and Hilde more about how Jeanne was going to stay with them.  When we first said that we were going away, Hilde was saying, "Mommy, Daddy, Mommy, Daddy, ..." like she says, "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, ..." when she wants to go to sleep with Jill and Jill is out.  Jill reassured her that Jeanne would be staying with them.  Hilde said, "Go away, Wacko".

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