10 Parenting Commandments

Parody of the late, great, Biggie Smalls' "The Ten Crack Commandments" Link if you don't know the song, don't know the lyrics, need a refresher or just love the song. Sing along.

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TEN PARENTING COMMANDMENTS

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9

It's the Ten Parenting Commandments, what?
DINKs can't tell me nothing about this parenting
Can't tell me nothing about these kids, these diapers, my working parents
Parents on the bus corner I ain't forget you parents, my triple kid parents

I've been in this game for years, it made me a parental
It's rules to this shit, I wrote me a manual
A step-by-step booklet for you to get
Your dependents on track, not your hair line pushed back

Rule Number Uno, never let kids know
How much candy you hold cause you know
The Smarties breed jealousy 'specially
If that kid messes up, get yo' stash scooped up

Number 2, never let 'em know your next move
Don't you know kids hear plans in silence while hidding?
Take it from your highness
I done changed grandma plans and these kids threw fits and fists

Number 3, never trust "no potty"
Your kids'll set their ass up, properly backed up
Diapered and clothed up, shit, for that mass dump
She be sitting in the car seat waiting to mess your day up

Number 4, I know you heard this before
They grow up fast, make the memories last

Number 5, never tell your friends where your kids at
I don't care if they want to dance, tell 'em bounce!

Number 6, that goddamn Wi-Fi? Dead it
You think a kids playing out back, shit forget it!

7, this rule is so underrated
Keep your family and business completely separated
Work and Life don't mix like 2 Pups and no Ryder
Find yourself too serious a provider

Number 8, always keep some wipes on you!
Them kids squeeze yogurt tubes and gummies too.

Number 9 shoulda been Number 1 to me,
If you ain't going to the park stay away from that street
If kids think they're playin' they ain't trying to listen
They'll be sittin in your van, waiting to start whinin'

Number 10, a strong word called bedtime
Strictly regimented, not up for contention
If you ain't got the patience, say "hell no!"
'Cause they gon' want to stay up rain, sleet, hail, snow

Follow these rules you'll have great kids to grow up
If not, 24 years still eating your food up
Mud hit your Tempo, watch your water bill raise up
Daughter did your dogs makeup, when you napped
Your boy pulled the rake up, edger and mower
He got the whole yard spruced up
Heard if he gets his chores done he and his friends can meet up
Gotta go gotta go, more Pampers to change up, word up

JOINING THE SLEUTH; MY TIME WITH THE MOMMA BEARS

Even with the growth of the dad movement all over the internet there is still a large mom's group demographic. I, however, managed to weasel my way into one. This is my story. The group I was in, Mommy Connection Edmonton West, was great! After all the nerves had settled and the momma bears embraced me as one of their own I had a blast.

Joining mom’s group started out as a laugh between Lori and myself. She sent me a link and sarcastically asked “I wonder if dads are allowed? lol” With that I promptly emailed asking about the discrimination towards dads in the female driven industry of babies. To my surprise I was called on my hijinks, the coordinator, who was great to deal with, was all for the idea of having a dad join, she had never had one in any of her groups. Hearing I would be the first dad made it even more of a challenge that I had to accept. I signed up a few days later.

I was ready and excited all the way leading up to it, I was joking with friends and family about it. It was still all a big laugh. It’s all fun and games with company, but once I was in the van and on the way to my first class, alone with my two babies, the fear started to sink in. As I am somewhat of a quiet guy to begin with I knew it wouldn't be easy. I arrived early to my first class, although I'm not sure why. I was terrified. I sat in the van, listening to other mom's outside chat like old friend. (during orientation I later found out that some of them, in fact, were friends). This did not help my sense of dread. 

If you are reading this as a mother, you're probably asking; "Why so nervous?". If you are a dad, let's face it, you're probably not reading this. I've helped move a 600 lb alligator, and that was less intimidating than walking into my first mom's group as a dad. My dad would refer to it as fear of the unknown. Day one was one of the most nerve racking events of my life. It falls somewhere behind taking my drivers test and proposing to my wife. That being said, I'm sure a lot of moms feel the same way on their first days. As a new parent you have a tendency to doubt yourself, it's natural for anyone embarking on this crazy journey called parenthood. Once I got over my fears, somewhere around the seventh class, it was a great experience.

The program itself was really varied and full of information, I was surprised. I mean I had no frame of reference as to what happens in a mom's group. As far as I knew they all just sat in a circle and chanted songs to babies! Or is that witches? Anyways, the wealth of knowledge provided by the guest speakers that came to class every week was great. We had professionals come in and talk about; sleep for both babies and moms, childcare and what to look for in a provider, baby massage, baby chiropractic, developmental toys, books, and music. There were also a few things for the moms; a photo shoot with the babies, hot mama workout (never again), and we finished the program off with a hike. Even though this started out as a social experiment for me it turned out to be something I looked forward to every week. It was informative, fun, and in the end a great experience all around.

To all the moms I met in moms group; You are all rock stars. You are all amazingly strong women. You are all an inspiration. Thank you momma bears, thank you for accepting me, thank you for making me feel welcome, thank you for a great couple of weeks.

The biggest thing I have taken away from being on paternity leave and attending mom's group is compassion for what women go through, it's not easy. The short nights and the long days. Always being on, regardless of circumstances, time of day, or situation is exhausting. The judging by others, both parents and non parents. All the problems and questions you have with a newborn. It's an endless barrage of issues and problem solving, and I didn't even have the emotional/hormonal aspect from childbirth that all these moms did! However, with mom's group I was exposed to others that are all going through the same thing, not necessarily all the exact same issues, but if someone had a question or concern it would always spark a conversation, never a debate. Something you don't find while looking for advice on the internet. 

The first few weeks on paternity leave I didn't leave the house, something I know a lot of moms go through in the first six weeks with a newborn. Being stuck at home with a baby is strange, you aren't alone but you get very lonely. Spending your days with no interaction with adults can, and will, slowly drive you crazy, or depressed. I could feel myself edging ever closer to that dark place. Within the first week of leave I got merely a taste of what my wife had gone through for the first six weeks. That is something no person should have to go through alone. Enter mom's group. Being forced to leave the house every week for something that I had committed to helped raise my confidence in going out with the twins. Pair that with some adult interaction and that depression slowly started to lift. I think this is something a lot of dads do not realise and can't comprehend. I had an idea, while I was working and my wife was on leave, I thought I could imagine what she was going through, but I couldn't, not even close, and again, I didn't even have the hormonal roller coaster that comes with the birthing process.

With that, my message to all the new moms out there is get out. If you are debating the idea of joining a mom’s group, find one. Be with people that understand what you're going through, people that are in the same situation as you. No matter how independent you are or how helpful or attentive your partner is, it will help. It doesn’t even have to be anything major, there are plenty of free activities that you can check out.

My message to dads, be there. Be there for your wife, after work, in the mornings, in the middle of the night. Be there in the kitchen, in the laundry room, in the baby's room. Help where and when you can. I'm sure you're tired from your 8 to 14 hour work day, you've had to deal with clients/customers/contractors, you may have had a bad day. But your wife hasn't talked to anyone, and she's going on her 23rd hour and she's had to deal with more shit that day than you have, literally. Help her, because you can't imagine what she is going through, don't make her do it alone.

Be there for your kids, be present, be playful, be a teacher. Be with them on the floor, at bath time, during feeding. Clean them, change them, put them to bed. Talk to them, sing to them, listen to them. They are your future, your legacy, your life. They won’t remember it, but you will. Take the time now to be close to them, my kids are 6 months old today, and it seems like yesterday I was holding them in the hospital. The time goes quick, too quick.

 

Discipline starts at the dinner table

One thing people always say about our kids is how polite they are. That's no accident. Manners are very important to me, they were instilled on me when I was younger. My grandmother was very old school, British, and Catholic. I remember when all 8 of us grandchildren received our own nice, thick book about etiquette. At grandma's house there were no elbows on the table, no talking with your mouth full, and everyone helped prep and clean up. All that stuck with me, and I'm being sure to pass that on.

At the dinner table there are rules. We always sit down as a family, we, Lori and I, put away our phones, and the boys are not allowed toys at the table. We sit and we talk. We talk about our day, "How was work?", "How was dayhome?", etc. 

As a kid, even with both my parents owning their own businesses, school, summer jobs, sports, we always sat as a family and ate dinner together. Even if it was a quick meal between some of those things, it was together. Dinner is usually the only time of day when most families will be together.  It's hard, but it is very important. It builds manners, conversation skills, patience, courtesy for others, sharing.

Nobody gets anything without a please and a thank you. Nobody leaves the table until we are all done eating. Nobody gets down from the table until they ask politely. "Please daddy I get down?". Once they are down they take their dishes to the sink, and they wash their hands. DOn't get me wrong, it has taken time, and there are still times when they will run off, but every time they are forced to come back, climb back on their chairs and ask politely.

Repetition is the mother of mastery. Dishes go in the sink, what stems from that? Anytime they finish a snack, be it a plate or a wrapper, it goes in the sink (as the garbage has a child lock on it). At bath time clothes go in the laundry hamper. Shoes go in the shoe box. Toys go in the toy box. So on. Teaching them to clean up after themselves now will only help us, and them, in the future.

Same with Please & Thank yous, they start at the table and are expected at any other time. They want a snack, if they ask without a please I will stare at them, or ask them to say it again. They want to watch a show, go outside, play in their pool, anything. Permission and please & thanks yous. Usually on the third or fourth time they will remember the magic word. They have started to catch on, sometimes they'll say please the first or second time now.

Be diligent, for there is nothing more important than manners. Have you ever been out and watched someone, a grown adult, ask for something without a please? Have you seen the disdain in the server's face? Or yourself felt uneasy about it? Bad manners are one of the biggest things that turns me off of a person more than anything. I don't want anyone to feel that way about my kids, whether it be other kids or adults.

Thanks for reading and following. Please feel free to leave a comment.

Vast difference in my Vasa Deferens

THE OTHER 'V' CARD

**Graphic Warning**

The photos at the end of the post some people may find offensive. They are close up shots so you can't really see anything but you know what you're looking at.

**Graphic Warning**

 

Dr. Lohlun's site

 

...A human being will exit your wife, so she’s done enough...
— Ryan Reynolds

I think of this quote when talk of vasectomies come up and people talk about not being able to do it.

With four kids we decided that that was quite enough madness. So we made the responsible decision of getting me snipped. Neutered. Firing blanks. Bob Barkered. "Devenomizing the cobra". "100% juice, no seeds".

Obviously I took pictures, to share with everyone, because that's what I do. Now, while graphic, these are not being posted to shock and disgust. I find that a lot of people my age don't know a lot about this sort of thing. This post is meant to educate.

When the choice comes up for permanent birth control between a couple there are a few options, the woman gets tied or the man gets snipped. All I know about the female procedure is that it can be lengthy and dangerous, it is a surgery after all.

As for the No-Scalpel technique that I got, it was fast and easy. I didn't feel a thing after the anesthetic. From entering Dr. Lohlun's clinic to walking out the door was a total of 20 minutes. 

Of that time quite a bit of it was waiting. We were in the waiting room for a few minutes then we were lead to the operating room. Told to drop trou and relax.

The Dr came in, made some small talk, remembered things we had talked about weeks ago during my consultation, asked about the kids. It's that sort of thing that really makes you feel comfortable, I wasn't just another patient to him. Believe me, this is a place where you want ever opportunity to be made to feel comfortable.

The Dr. applied the iodine, froze my sack and away we went. Lori and I were a little bit hesitant as they started off by bickering about what was on the television. I thought their attention should have been focused on the matter at hand but realized that they were waiting for the anesthetic to set in. 

 The hardest part of the whole thing....

The hardest part of the whole thing....

He cut a hole in the sack, pulled out one of my vasa deferens, cut, cauterized, shoved back in, rinse and repeat.

The process was so easy and so quick. I even got bored at one point so went on Facebook. If you are thinking about doing it and are unsure about it know that it is way better than it used to be. Recovery is faster, success rate is higher and complications are lower. And Dr. Lohlun was awesome, I would recommend him to anyone that is planning on doing this.


graphic warning


One of those nights...

Come, take my hand. Follow me on a journey of mishaps and an incredible series of unfortunate events that might make you question having multiple kids. 

Here is the timeline of our night last night that somehow my wife and I survived;

Cooper starts crying, I go in to check on him. He's puked all over his bed. Ok, so into the bath for him. Strip the bed, get new sheets on. Put dirty ones in wash. Cooper comes down to living room to calm down. By this time Parker hears commotion downstairs so he comes down. We decide to watch Paw Patrol to relax. 

An hour and fifteen minutes later and both boys are back in bed. Good, that wasn't so bad.

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After twins take down 2 bottles we figure out we've mismixed the formula, too much water.

Panic, Google, read forums, text momma Baer. 

Momma Baer would be my sister in law, our best resourse for all things baby. She is basically a baby encyclopedia, with an appendix for twins

Dismantle, clean, dry, reassemble Baby Brezza. 

 

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We go up to bed with the twins. This time with proper mixed bottles. We get settled, starting to feed then we hear Parker call out for mommy and daddy. I'm sure he's fine, lets take a look, open the door,

"I made a mess." Bless his little soul.

This time Parker has puked all over his bed. Ok, Parker in the bath now, Cooper's a light sleeper so he comes into the bathroom to investigate. Ok, in the bath with him too. Strip bed, new sheets, new pillow.
 

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Both boys are out of the bath. Get Cooper dressed and back in bed. He's not too happy about that, he's crying. Bring Parker's bedding down to laundry, switch over Cooper's bedding. Realize Cooper's bedding flooded the washing machine. 

Load Parker's bedding, sans comforter. 

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The twins are now fed proper with proper formula. The problem that comes from formula that is too watery is that pee...a lot of pee. 

Change Lucas, lay him down on the bed while we finish with Sophia. He pees more, soaks his clothes, his swaddle, our comforter. Rookie mistake, pee pee was not down.

Change Lucas, swaddle him.

Change Sophia, swaddle her.

Twins in bassinet.

Parker has been up with us the whole time. That's ok, he likes to help.

Put Parker to bed, Cooper asleep. Notice he is almost falling out of bed. Move him. Mistake. He wakes up, cries.

Close door walk away. 

3:15am

Mommy is in bed, exhaustion setting in.

Daddy is in garage, jotting down everything that has just happened in the last 7 hours.

Drinking. 


3:30am

House is quiet. 
Morning soon.... 

5:45am

The twins wake up for feeding, as expected. Finish that with no problems.


6:15am

"Daddy, I made a mess".... Shit, poor little guy. So now Parker is in bed with us, as we have no more change of sheets. With a towel under him of course.


6:45am

Parker starts uncontrollable crying, I rush him to the toilet, just in time. 


6:55am

Looks like daddy is up for the day.