Tag Archives: kids

Good for kids!

Google Maps has this thing where it lets you know if an attraction is “good for kids.” Not sure exactly how well this works, as I found this while looking for things to do with my kids in Turin:

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Nothing to see here

Took the kids to a science experiment center last weekend. As we entered one of the live shows, the woman at the microphone said, “Welcome! Sorry about the accident at the previous show. We’re all set to go again!” And then the door closed, trapping us inside.

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Parent tip

Next time your kids have a party, introduce the “phone bowl!” Works great for having guests actually interact with each other!

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Terrible parent thoughts

While looking through party snack themes, I stumbled upon a few sites with tips for throwing a Peppa Pig party. My kids are too old for Peppa Pig, but I was thinking if I had to provide snacks for that party I’d bring pork rinds and bacon strips.

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Frightening sick children

My son was sick last week with a bad cough and fever. After giving him some cough medicine and tea, I told him to rest. I then put on some music for him to relax. Unfortunately, the Horrible Histories album was already cued and when I hit the power button, the radio blared, “Bring out your dead! Bring out your dead!”

I spent the next few minutes assuring my son that he did not have the plague.

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New pet… this one breathes!

We got a cat this week! The kids are overjoyed. They say it’s a lot more fun than their last pet, Rocky.

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Thanks for the image, son.

After eating a bit too much curry at lunch, my son had to spend a long time in the bathroom yesterday evening. When he finally came out, he said:

“I thought I had dysentery! But not like Oregon Trail, more like Oregon ROAD!”

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Geography

We decided to book a trip for the winter. I asked the kids where they wanted to go. One of my suggestions was Barcelona and the other was Greece. One son said Greece and the other really wanted Barcelona. As he has never mentioned Barcelona, I wondered why he was so adamant about going. When the rest of us voted for Greece, he said, “But I’m tired of Europe. I’d like to see South America.”
Um, Barcelona is in Spain. Spain is in Europe.
“Oh, I thought you meant Brazil. Never mind. Greece then.”

Two things about this:
1. Oh, is a trip to Greece boring to you? Visiting one of the cradles of civilization, eating good food, getting to see sunshine in the middle of winter (remember we live in Sweden) not good enough for you?
2. Wait…. why Brazil?

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It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time!

I planned to bring both of my sons to the beach yesterday. I packed two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, because they’re cheap to make and I already had everything. Plus, they like them, which always helps.

Just before leaving, my oldest son got an invitation to go somewhere else, so my youngest invited a friend to join us instead. “No problem,” I said. “I’ve already got two towels, two sandwiches and two water bottles.”
And then on the way there, it occurred to me… most Swedish children have never had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
I have this same problem with two other standard American kids’ foods. The first is macaroni and cheese. I can’t think of a kid in America who doesn’t love macaroni and cheese, but guess what? Swedish kids seem to hate it! I have no idea why, other than it’s unfamiliar. Or maybe their environmental, super-healthy senses can tell on some level that a typical box is probably full of chemicals and additives. Still though, it’s pasta and it’s cheese. What’s not to like?
The other problem we often have is frosting on birthday cake. Again, these Swedish kids who aren’t exposed to grotesque amounts of sugar just don’t seem to enjoy it. We have to have whipped cream or fruit to get them to eat it.
So you can see my concern that the peanut butter and jelly sandwich might be rejected by my son’s Swedish friend. That would mean I would actually have to stop and pay for another meal, which I was really trying to avoid.
Luckily, I remembered one of the most annoying songs ever that every kid seems to love, no matter what country they’re from. PEANUT BUTTER JELLY TIME!
If you’re unfamiliar with the lyrics, here are a few sections of the song. Please remember it is meant to be shouted over the music, and not sung:
It’s peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly time!
Peanut butter jelly time!
….
Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly!
Peanut butter jelly! Peanut butter jelly!
Do the peanut butter jelly, peanut butter jelly
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat
Do the peanut butter jelly, peanut butter jelly
Peanut butter jelly with a baseball bat
Now, I may not have had a baseball bat, but the song did the trick. The sandwich was accepted and eaten by the friend. Money saved! Though I did have to pay in another way by having that horrible song stuck in my head all day.
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Happy Swedish mother’s day

Today is Swedish mother’s day and I got one present from my youngest son a day early when I picked him up yesterday afternoon.

Mamma, I got you a present.

(digs in pocket)

Here! It’s mascara! I found it just sitting on a wall by the street. It’s still got some in it! I thought you could use it to color in your eyebrows! You’d look cool with black eyebrows!

Thanks, son.

 

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We’ve got to grow it on her brow

My son, who has his bedroom adjacent to the kitchen where the radio plays, stomped out of his room very confused this morning.

“What kind of song is this? Why do they keep singing ‘we’ve got to grow it on her brow?’ I don’t get it! Grow what?!”

“Um, the lyrics are actually ‘we’ve got a groovy kind of love’ but I think I like your version better.”

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Old tech, so complicated

We had a bunch of 10 and 11-year olds over for a birthday party last weekend. My husband collects old game systems, so we hooked up the original NES (Nintendo Entertainment System).

Unfortunately, with today’s modern televisions, the Duck Hunt gun no longer works accurately. The rest of the games could be played with no problem, but most kids could not understand how to start the games once the cartridge was in and the system on.

The kids would press A and then B on the controller, saying, “I don’t know how to start. How do you start?”

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(Reading and critical thinking – not a specialty of 10-year olds).

 

The modern family

As I’m sitting here typing this in my nice comfy slippers from my iPad, my husband plays games on his RetroPie from the bed, my oldest son is using Skype to play Minecraft with his friend across town, and my youngest son is in a virtual reality world. Welcome to the future.

My current view as pictured above.

Children are our future

My husband gave a presentation to a 4th grade class yesterday and asked the kids how they veiw the future and what new technologies they think we will have 50 years from now.

I asked him how it went and he said, “It’s amazing the number of children who answer Robot Slaves. In fact, one kid drew a picture of himself pointing and yelling ‘Bring chips!’ while a robot bent over meekly in the corner.”

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Google translate – hours of entertainment

I looked up reviews on a children’s activity park in Italy, but everything was in Italian so I had to use Google Translate. I don’t know why this person only gave this place 2 stars. It sounds pretty interesting!

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Dress Code

In my old hometown newspaper from Texas, there is an article this week about a sophomore student in high school asking the School Board to remove the ban on boys wearing earrings in school.

I have tried to explain to my Swedish husband that when I went to school in Texas, you could not dye your hair, boys could not have hair past their shoulders, no facial hair and no earrings for boys. That was combined with the usual skirts past the fingertips for girls and no hats allowed for anyone.

Apparently the schools in the place I grew up finally took away the rule about long hair for boys (fairly recently). I know the earring and facial hair rule are still in effect, as well as the skirts and hats, and I’m not sure about hair dye but I think that is still banned as well.

When my husband went to high school here in Sweden, he went through purple hair, bright red hair and blue hair, among many other colors. He also had an earring. And no one cared. He was a smart and great student. No one in class was “distracted,” as some Texas schools like to say in these situations.

Imagine at your job if a man walked in with an earring (many men at your job probably already wear one or more), facial hair (shocking!) and purple hair. You might say, “Whoa Todd, cool hair!” and then do your job. I can’t imagine anyone saying, “There is just no way I can file insurance claims when I can’t take my eyes of Todd’s earring.” or “I would save this woman’s life, but I can’t perform surgery when the ambulance driver who brought this patient in has purple hair. It’s too distracting.”

My oldest son dyed his hair orange most of last year. All this week he has been wearing fake mustaches to school, nerd glasses and a hat that looks like Sonic the Hedgehog. Surprisingly, this does not affect his work or the work of his fellow students, some who have dyed hair, wear shorts or even a rabbit suit pullover (yes, I’ve seen this twice).

I live in the real world. I ride the subway. I’ve seen people dressed as zombies, people with face tattoos, people with piercings and chains. I don’t mind any of those people as long as they TAKE A SHOWER (and don’t eat my brains, of course).

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My oldest son has worn this to school every day this week (with a different mustache every day).

 

Toothbrush thoughts

My son had a good dentist appointment this week and the dentist gave him a new toothbrush when he left. He took it out of the wrapper and slowly ran his fingers up and down, over the top.

“This is so soft. It’s like when I touch your toothbrush. It’s soft under my fingers. My old toothbrush feels like straw.”

I realized I hadn’t replaced the kids’ toothbrushes in a while. I told my son that I didn’t know his toothbrush was so hard, and that he should remind me to replace it more often. 

I gave him a hug and told him he could go on ahead of me to see if his neighborhood friend was home. As I watched him run down the sidewalk, I thought about how happy I was that he didn’t have to suffer through all the problems I had at his age with my teeth. What a healthy kid. He eats well, exercises and….

Wait a minute. 

“Why are you touching my toothbrush?!” 

How to disappoint your kids

Overheard conversation between my kids

Boy 1: Are you ok with guacamole on your tacos?

Boy 2: You don’t seem to understand the meaning of tacos. With tacos, you can add what you want – meat, cheese, lettuce, tomato…

Boy 1: Yeah, but would you eat guacamole?

Boy 2: I could do it if necessary, but I just don’t see the point.

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How to get kids to eat less chips

“Well kids, they might be chips and they might be cobras. How about a nice apple instead?”

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