Competition Daddy Blog

Crash Kids IKEA Soft Toy Designs

It seems that my kids have plenty of my wife in them. They absolutely adore designing just about anything. So, when IKEA announced a plush toy design contest, my kids were all in. I’m not sure how the contest works completely, but it looks like it’s based on people’s votes. So, here are each of their designs and a link to vote for them if you like their design (or even if you don’t and just want to help them win). You can vote every day if you’re bored like that. Voting ends on 11/22.

Vote for Crash Kid #1’s Animal named The Kingikea-plush-toy-crash-kid-1

Vote for Crash Kid #2’s Animal named Daisy Dodoikea-plush-toy-crash-kid-2

Vote for Crash Kid #3’s Animal named Arnoldikea-plush-toy-crash-kid-3

I imagine it’s just my skewed father eyes, but I’d actually love to see all of these as stuffed animals. They’d all be pretty fun to have.

Daddy Blog From the Mouths of Crash Kids

When Your Son Wants to Change His Name – From the Mouths of Crash Kids

Tonight I took the time to lay down next to Crash Kid #3 (7 years old for those following along at home) and talk with him before he went off to sleep. The kid never ceases to amaze me. He’s so deliberate and thoughtful. It’s impressive.

While we were chatting, the conversation headed off in a surprising direction. It went something like this.

Crash Kid #3: Dad, at school I write my name as Micah Moo Moo. I really like that name.
Dad: Oh, that’s cool. Like on your homework or where?
Crash Kid #3: Yeah. Not on the stuff where I have to write neat or if it’s getting posted on the board. On the other stuff.
Dad: Interesting. Is your teacher ok with that?
Crash Kid #3: I don’t know…but there’s this girl in my class named Addison. On her papers she writes her name as Addie and the teacher calls her Addie instead of Addison. I write my name as Micah Moo Moo and the teacher still just calls me Micah.
Dad: (lol) Did you want the teacher to call you Micah Moo Moo?
Crash Kid #3: Yes.

There you have it. I guess Crash Kid #3 wants a name change. I did ask him if he thought the other kids would make fun of him if his name was Micah Moo Moo. He told me that they wouldn’t. He then told me he was going to write a song for me about Micah Moo Moo. Sadly the camera wasn’t rolling, but in case you were wondering it did say that Micah Moo Moo was a cow.

I told him, “Great, then we won’t have to buy any more milk.” He quickly replied, “I don’t like milk.” I guess it makes sense that Micah Moo Moo the cow wouldn’t like milk. I wonder if he’s a chocolate cow. I’ll have to ask him tomorrow.

Daddy Blog Dancing From the Mouths of Crash Kids

From the Mouths of Crash Kids

The Crash Kids were on something last night and just kept saying funny things. So, I decided to capture some of them and make a post about them so you could enjoy them as well (at least I hope you laugh at them like I did). Sometimes it’s the small things with kids.

Crash Kid #3 was bouncing literally off the couch yesterday night when I asked what his sister was doing on the computer. He replied, “She’s updating my awesome dance moves on my special blog.” Note: He was dancing while saying this. He actually had some good hip action.

Then, he said, “She’s computering on the computer.”

A short time after this he was walking up the stairs to bed when I told him that I loved him. He responded, “Never say I love you or else I’ll beast you up.” I don’t know about you, but I’d loved to be beasted up.

When I went to say prayers and good night to Crash Kid #1, he told me that “Failures is how you become famous.” Besides the poor grammar, it took me a second to process what he meant. Then, I replied that “That’s true. My first website failed, it only made $200.” Crash Kid #1 replied, “How’s that a failure?” I replied, “I can’t live off $200.” He replied, “I can.”

Looks like we still need to teach him how much it costs to live. Although I still love that $200 seems like a ton of money to him. Also, in case you’re wondering, he did clarify that what he meant was that many successful people had failures before they became successful. He then reeled off a slew of stories about Michael Jordan getting kicked off his high school basketball team and a whole bunch of other successful people. I told him that it was great that he’d learned that failure doesn’t preclude success, but is part of success.

I love the Crash Kids.

Dad Instincts Proud or Scared Tech Kids

The Hijacked Cell Phone – Proud or Scared Series

I decided I should start a series of blog posts I call Proud of Scared. In this series of posts (which I’ll do as incidents occur) I’ll highlight those times as a parent when you’re torn between being proud of your child or scared. In these situations you’re proud of their smarts, intelligence, creativity, or abilities, but you’re also scared as you enter a new stage in your child’s development. Sometimes you’re scared of the new stage and sometimes your scared of what this new talent will mean in the future. You get the idea?

Now for my first entry in the Proud or Scared series.

I took Crash Kid #1 and #3 to the park while I was playing ultimate frisbee on Saturday. While there I let Crash Kid #1 access my phone so he could play some games in the shade while I was playing ultimate frisbee. During one of my waters breaks I discovered that Crash Kid #1 had sent a few texts to Crash Mom in my absence. Here’s the content of the texts (as sent by Crash Kid #1):

Me: We are thinking of leaving soon would you like anything from Mcdonalds?
Crash Wife: Im good. I just had some leftover pizza. The kids would probably like chicken nuggets though
Me: Crash Kid #1 wants a banana strawberry smoothie should I get it for him?
Crash Wife: It’s up to you.
Me: I’m gonna play 1 more point and then I’ll be back at home
Crash Wife: Ok.
Me: Crash Kid #1 is annoying me so much about going to bounce U
Crash Wife: He is obsessed. Im not even sure it is open in saturdays
Me: Now Crash Kid #3 is following him and doing it as well
Me: STOP!!!
Crash Wife: Ahhh!
Me: I know
Me: Lol…that was all Crash Kid #1
Me: Pretty creative
Crash Wife: That is funny. What a little stinker

There you go. Should I be proud of his creativity or scared?

Daddy Blog

Labor Day Hiking at Red Rock

We went hiking today at Red Rock canyon. It’s a short drive from where we live in Las Vegas. A couple of the crash kids said they didn’t want to go, but we made them and then of course when they were there they loved climbing all over the rocks. I of course chose the hike with lots of bouldering for the kids so I could make sure that they loved it. Although, it always scares the life out of me as a father. It’s so much easier when it’s someone else’s kids to just let them climb all over.

Anyway, I captured this video of Crash Kid #3 doing an original number. If you can’t tell, he’s drumming on the sand while he’s singing. It’s pretty awful, so I thought I’d share it with you all:

We also took this nice family photo at the end:
Crash Kid - Labor Day at Red Rock - Funny Faces
Ok, this was the funny face family photo. It’s much more fun than a regular one. Although, my favorite face in this picture is Crash Mom’s face. She tried to stick her tongue out for the funny face picture and accidentally licked Crash Kid #4’s salty ear. I think she liked it.

Being Sick Daddy Blog

Do Child Injuries Come in Threes?

How cute is Crash Kid #2? Even with a shiner she’s cute. Yes, that’s a nice black eye she has there. I asked her where she got it and she said she got it trying to do a back flip on the neighbor’s trampoline. While I love that we have a number of little Ninja Warriors in our family, it doesn’t come without its issues.

Of course, many parents would really be upset with their kid for getting a black eye. Personally, I was pretty proud of her. She didn’t complain about it at all. She was actually quite proud. If she’d complained, maybe I’d feel different. However, since she was cool about it, I was excited she was living the life of a child.

I know the feeling as a parent to want to lock your child in a padded room where nothing can hurt them. There’s no feeling in life worse than seeing your child in pain. I hate it and everything about it. However, I’m also learning that many of the best lessons in life come with a little bit of pain. Sometimes it’s physical like a black eye and sometimes its emotional. I’m happy to put off the emotional for a bit. However, Crash Kid #1 is about to start middle school, so it might not be much longer.

Yesterday we went to a trampoline gym called Gravady which also incorporated some foam pits and some Ninja Warrior obstacles. It was a bit of a drive from Henderson, but was pretty awesome. I can’t tell you how excited I was to get across some of those obstacles. It was also amazing watching Crash Kid #1 do the slack line and Crash Kid #4 fearlessly dive into the foam bit over and over again. Crash Kid #3 was all about the dodge ball. Considering how many people were playing dodgeball, it’s amazing he didn’t get trampled.

Our time was up and we were getting ready to leave and two injuries happened. Curtis sprained his ankle and Alessia landed on the mat next to the tramp and did something to her knee. I guess that’s what we get for trying to play a few extra minutes on our way out. Hopefully injuries come in threes and we’re done with injuries for now.

Daddy Blog Food Single Dad Video Games

#SuperDad at Chuck E. Cheese’s

For Father’s Day, my wife decided to leave town for about a week. Wasn’t that generous of her? She left 4 beautiful angel children with me for a whole week. Crash Wife is so generous! I feel so lucky to have her make such sacrifices for me.

As you may remember, when the wife is away I go to Chuck E. Cheese’s. I really didn’t plan to make it a tradition when I wrote that post, but it seems like I’ve now officially made it a tradition. I won’t be surprised if the next time that crash wife goes out of town the crash kids ask me, “When are we going to Chuck E. Cheese’s?”
Crash Kid 2 and Chuck E Cheese
The good part is that Chuck E. Cheese’s is fine even with 4 kids. They have the person manning the door and so you can relax and enjoy the time together while the kids run all over.

Chuck E. Cheese’s sent me a Father’s Day pass to be able to go and get some free pizza, drinks and tokens. Plus, they gave me a challenge to teach my kids a lesson in skeeball and basketball. Ok, that’s not how they phrased it. They asked for us to go and have fun competing with our kids. Anyone who knows me understands that I’m hyper competitive and there’s only one person in the world where I don’t mind losing: Crash Wife. I’ll take it easy on the Crash Kids and I’ll make sure they have a good time, but I’ll also make sure I win. It’s just who I am and how I’m made.
Skeeball High Five at Chuck E Cheese
See what I mean in the picture above? He certainly seems like he’s happy (even if I just smoked him in a game of skeeball). My favorite game though has to be the basketball shoot out. Luckily Crash Tennessee Aunt wasn’t there or I’d get smoked by her, but she was no where to be seen. However, I have to admit that Crash Kid #1 is starting to catch up with me. I’m sure a few years down the road he’ll read this post and laugh as he challenges me to a game of something. I figure I’ll just retire by that point.
Beating Crash Kid 1 at Basketball at Chuck E Cheese
I also loved playing Skeeball with Crash Kid #4. It’s so funny watching a 2 year old play skeeball. He can’t score any points since he can’t roll the ball hard enough to get up the ramp into the scoring area so our ticket collection suffers. However, he also gets a bunch of free rolls since half of his rolls don’t make it all the way up the ramp either and roll right back down to him. He has a great time even if it pulls at my heart to not score points on each ball. At least he’s cute doing it.
Barely Big Enough to Play Skeeball at Chuck E Cheese's
While the games were fun, I couldn’t help but let out a big belly laugh when Crash Kid #1 said the following as we were leaving, “I just have to say, that pizza was great!” In fact, he’s been raving about the delicious cheese pizza at Chuck E. Cheese’s ever since. This coming from the kid who doesn’t like to eat anything.
Crash Kid 1 and Chuck E Cheese's Pizza
As part of Father’s Day, Chuck E. Cheese’s is giving dads a chance to win tickets to the 2015 Big Ball Game in Cincinnati (You know the one that can’t be mentioned). All you have to do to enter is to share images and stories about what you love most about being a dad using the hashtag #SuperDad. Plus, I think they’re giving away some free guest passes to Chuck E. Cheese’s as well. Here’s my entry with a picture of Crash Kid #3 making new friends that I tweeted out today.

What a great day with the kids! I even was a real Super Dad since I let Crash Kid #4 bring one of his friends with us as well. Nothing quite like being the cool dad who takes your kids’ friends fun places.

Daddy Blog Dancing

I’m Dancing!

I had two incidents happen the last 24 hours that made me so happy. The first one happened today. Crash Mom had just left to the dentist and so I had Crash Kid #4 (2 years old). I was getting some breakfast together when I turn around and he’s jumping up and down and waving his arms while saying “I’m dancing!” I proceeded to turn on some music to continue the dancing.

Is there anything more amazingly beautiful than the smile on a child that’s dancing?

Yesterday when Crash Mom picked me up from the airport, the kids were in the back and I guess they’d been driving her nuts (this isn’t the part that makes me happy). She told me that she’d decided to turn the music up really loud as her method of dealing with it.

As she’s telling me this story, Crash Kid #3 (5 years old) said “Dad, Turn the music up!!” I look in the rear view mirror and he and his older sister and dancing in their seats. Of course, I cranked the music up a little louder.

I guess they got the dancing bug from their dad. That makes me really happy.

Daddy Blog

When Your 2 Year Old Jumps in the Bathtub Fully Clothed

I just stepped away from work to my 5 year old screaming about something. He’s in the bath, so when he really starts screaming I fear that something bad has happened and usually check it out. I’ve learned the various levels of screaming from my children. When it’s an angry scream I usually ignore it when I’m working. When it’s a hurt scream, I usually at least go and check out what’s happening. I feel like I need to at least see if I need to stop further damage.

When I stepped out of my office (my bedroom) to check on the screaming today, I found my 5 year old taking a bath and my 2 year old fully clothed in the bath next to him. Not fun. My wife arrived just after me as we assessed the situation and how to respond. Since it wasn’t anything life threatening, I went back to my office and left the wet clothes and wet child to my wife.

At first I was feeling a little guilty for leaving my wife “the mess.” I guess I could have helped her, but I’m technically working right now (and I have more than a lot of work to do). Then, I thought about all the times I’m at work and a fully clothed 2 year old hops in the bathtub. Ok, not an actual 2 year old, but all day every day I’m solving the problems like a 2 year old hopping in the bathtub. In fact, some days I wish I was only dealing with some wet clothes and wet diaper and not the business problems I deal with day in and day out.

Luckily, I have the sweetest wife in the whole world and she didn’t say anything about it and happily (at least as happy as you can be with a wet 2 year old) fixed the situation. I’ll admit that sometimes I go out and spend time talking with my wife about my soaked clothed 2 year old work problems and that’s often very helpful. She’s a great listener. I think she knows she can come and talk to me about it anytime she wants too.

Long story short, we all have our fully clothed 2 year old in the bathtub problems. Life isn’t whether we’ll have challenges, but how we deal with them.

Child Dates Family

Taking Me Back to My Childhood at Chuck E. Cheese’s

Last night Chuck E. Cheese’s invited a number of Las Vegas bloggers to come and try out their new menu. When I saw the invite I jumped at the chance. One of my favorite childhood memories is going to Chuck E. Cheese’s. It was the place I always wanted to go for my birthday and so I often did. So, I have some really nostalgic, fond memories of the place as a child.

Of course, with 4 Crash Kids now, we’ve spent a lot of time there as well. Turns out that I love going there as an adult nearly as much as I love it as a kid. The Crash Mom might argue that I am still a kid, but that’s a topic for another blog post. As a parent one of the best features is the person standing at the door so you can just let your kids run around and have fun without worrying if they’re going to “escape.”
Micah Playing on Chuck E Cheese Play Area
The other 3 Crash Kids were busy with other activities tonight, so it was cool to just have some one on one time with myself and Crash Kid #3. Plus, one on one he is absolutely hilarious. He wouldn’t stop talking. In fact, he was telling our host all about his strategy for using his tokens to get as many tickets as possible. I think he gets all this talking from Crash Mom.

I did my best to get a good sample of the new menu, but there were a lot of changes including: a thin and crispy crust option, a Cali Alfredo and BBQ Chicken pizza, a Caesar and Club wrap, chicken wings and breadsticks, and Crash Kid #3’s favorite Dessert churros and cinnamon sticks. I was a little surprised by the wraps since I’d always seen Chuck E. Cheese’s as a pizza place. Although, I’m sure many will enjoy this added variety.
New Chuck E Cheese Menu
Personally I loved the soft parmesan breadsticks. They were a great pair for the pizza. What’s interesting is that I would have never had the dessert options if I didn’t attend this event. When we go, we always grab one of the coupons or buy one of their packages and the dessert is never included in the package. Now I wish that the dessert came in the package so we’d just get it as part of the overall purchase.
New Chuck E Cheese Pizza Crust and Wings
After we stuffed ourselves with the new menu, Crash Kid #3 had 20 more tokens (Yes, he counted). You’d think he’d want to make his way around and play a bunch of games. Maybe throw some balls or use them in the game that eats your tokens and churns out tickets. Nope. He fell in love with this fish game where you shoot a crossbow and get tickets for collecting 80 pounds of fish. So, he learned that he could put all 20 tokens in the game and just shoot away. He was nice enough to trade off with me and I did catch at least 4 sharks (which is the hard one to get), but Crash Kid #3 got the 40 ticket jelly fish. Check out his focus when playing the game:
Micah Playing the Awesome Fish Game at Chuck E Cheese

However, this series of pictures of Micah playing skee ball (before he found the fish game) is awesome too. Is there anything better than seeing your child happy?

Actually, there might be something better. As part of the blogger event, they gave me a guest pass to give away to a lucky reader of the blog. It will give you 1 large pizza, 4 soft drinks, and 30 game tokens at Chuck E. Cheese’s. All you have to do is say something funny, interesting, insightful, crazy, or fun in the comments or on Twitter (@techguy) and I’ll choose someone in a totally non-random and bias way.