Monday Miles: Parent Driver Training

Oh, hey there…it’s me, cutest baby in the history of time and space, bringing you another edition of Monday Miles.  Today I’d like to discuss some important ways to test the driving skills of the person responsible for your transportation.  In my case, that’s primarily my mom.  She gets me to and from school every day, to Target on Fridays, and to Publix on Saturdays.  I need my mom to be at the top of her game when it comes to navigate the great metropolis of Cape Coral, so I’ve developed a series of tests.

Want to play a game involving six lanes of traffic and a toddler?

Want to play a game involving six lanes of traffic and a toddler?

Hand-Eye Coordination…When navigating busy streets, it’s important that your hand-eye coordination is at its best.  This will ensure you are able to politely wave drivers on at a four way stop, and tell other drivers who run red lights that they are, “NUMBER ONE!” (that’s what my mom says, anyway)  To keep mom in top form, I like to throw random objects at the back of her head while the car is moving.  Toys, my blankie, an empty water bottle she gave me to keep me quiet (LOLOLOL) my shoes, you name it…to the front seat it goes!  Keeps her reflexes sharp and her ninja skills at their best.

Focus Focus Focus…You must always pay attention to the road and other drivers, no matter the distraction.  The best way to test my mom’s ability to focus and avoid distraction is to yell, generally for no reason, for fifteen blocks.  Sometimes it’s a happy yell, and sometimes if I really want to give her the essay portion of the test, it’s a hungry yell.  Today, she successfully maintained her concentration by cranking up Guns ‘n Roses.  I then successfully matched Axl octave for octave.  WE ROCKED.

Welcome to rush hour, baby.

Welcome to rush hour, baby.

Multi-Tasking…Sometimes a driver needs to be able to multi-task, like reading street signs and using a turn signal at the same time, or reaching aimlessly around the backseat floorboard to find whatever it is I dropped that I suddenly need RIGHTNOWRIGHTNOWRIGHTNOWOHMYGOSHWHEREISMYTHINGGIVEITTOMENOOOOOOWWWW!!!!

The Boy Scout Rule…Always be prepared, right?  Cheerios in the glove compartment, sippy cups in the diaper bag, blankies in the center console, extra toys shoved under the seats.  This keeps you prepared to answer my demands of I’m hungry, I’m thirsty, I’m bored, I CAN’T SEE YOUR FACE, MOM, can we play peek-a-boo while you’re driving?  Also good for all boy scouts: a roll of paper towels in the backseat which I found on my way home today and OHMYGOSH it was awesome.  Good luck multi-tasking after that toy, lady.

Hide and Seek…Or better yet, ESP.  I dropped something in the backseat.  I need it.  You don’t know what it is because we’re on I75 and you are ignoring me.  You must sense the item, locate the item and return it to my possession.  Hint: It’s probably something I was eating that I shouldn’t be.  Also, spoiler alert: I ate more than you realize.

My mom tells me that she is a super awesome fantastic driver, that “Ten and Two is the Thing to Do!” and that it’s totally okay to drive five miles under the speed limit.  I just like to throw in these additional games to make sure she’s bringing her A game to rush hour traffic.

TOWANDAAA!

TOWANDAAA!

Honk honk,

Miles

Monday Miles: The Abominable Fur Man

Monday Miles is a sporadic feature from my 10 month old son, Miles.  Yes, he’s a baby genius.  Enjoy.

Even though he scares her into sleeping with the light on, my mom continues to read an unhealthy amount of Stephen King.  She started this a few years back, after she read all 1,500 pages of “The Stand” in two weeks.  From my own personal experience, what you read can have an impact on your daily life.  For example, “Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Too Late” always makes me not sleep (nice try, mom!)  Naturally, if you’re reading about nothing but possessed dogs, murderous maids and epic plagues, you’re going to get a little nutty.

There is a monster living in our house.  He hides under the china hutch, and comes out at night, after my mom has finished sweeping and gone to bed.  Every morning, she knows that the monster has been running laps around the dining room table because she finds his fur.  “YEARRRGH!” my mom will quietly yell (she thinks I don’t know that she’s yelling) “BACK AGAIN!”

I have never seen the monster myself, but I know he exists, because my mom is always taking out her weapons: broom, vacuum, and if the Fur Man has been especially furry, the Shop Vac.

The battle ends quickly, with not a single trace of the Fur Man in sight.  But, without fail, the signs will be there the next morning, and my mom will spot it with her squinting (PUT ON YOUR GLASSES, WOMAN!) eagle eyes.

I think the Abominable Fur Man is best friends with Maggie, our dog.  It seems like every morning, after my mom has cleaned up the evidence from the Fur Man’s visit, she gives Maggie a very skeptical look, as if Maggie is inviting the Fur Man over for cookies and milk after everyone is asleep.

Maybe the Fur Man is nice; maybe he’s friends with Santa, and my mom just doesn’t get it because she reads too much Stephen King and thinks everything is a monster sent here from outer space to make noises in the middle of the night and give her more chores around the house.  You’d think she would be more understanding, what with all the “hug trees, love each other, don’t forget to recycle” stuff she’s telling me all the time.

The next time I find traces of the Fur Man, I’m going to follow them to his hide out, where I will hug him and take enormous mouthfuls of fur.  And if I can’t find him, I’m sure the dog will cooperate.

He looks harmless.  And delicious...

He looks harmless…
and delicious.

Happy Monday,

Miles

Monday Miles: The Toddler Olympics

Another Monday.  Boring?  Not when the Winter Olympics are quietly playing in the background  22 hours a day (we’re “anti-TV”, remember?)

These look delicious.

These look delicious.

I understand these games must be a pretty big deal, as evidenced by my mom’s tears while watching Ice Dancing.

Yeah, I'd probably cry, too.

Yeah, I’d probably cry, too.

My dad is talking to competitors that most certainly do not speak English; however, his coaching skills seem to be working.  Since everyone is in the Olympic spirit around here, I thought I’d start my own version: The Toddler Olympics.  Here are the games I’d like to pitch…

Diving  Different from the diving portion of the Summer Olympics, as the Toddler Olympics Diving Competition requires no water.  In fact, extra points are awarded for diving onto hard surfaces.  Preferred platforms include the changing table, mom and dad’s bed, the couch, and toys that I’m not supposed to climb.  Additional points are awarded for creativity and difficulty.  Simply hurling yourself off the changing table in an attempt to inflict great bodily harm will not suffice; you also need style.

Poking  Think of this as toddler-level boxing.  Poking requires skill, precision, and the wily tactics of a fox.  You must poke your finger in one of your opponent’s face holes.  This is achieved by distracting them with your ability to “almost” walk, attempts at self-feeding, and most importantly, your undeniable cuteness.  When your opponent least expects it…BAM!  Finger in the eyeball.  Fishhook their nose.  Thumb jammed into their ear.  And, the coup-de-grace, grabbing their bottom teeth with one hand and bopping them on the forehead with the other.  Additional points awarded if your fingers are covered in food during any portion of the poking.

Cat Chasing  Self-explanatory.  Chase the cat in as many loops as possible around the dining room table.  Additional points awarded if you successfully climb over and under all of the chairs, pull the tablecloth off the table, and scare the cat into climbing on top of the china hutch.  Super extra special points if you touch the cat.  Gold medal if you grab the cat’s tail.  Points deducted if mom catches you trying to poke the cat in one of his face holes.

Milk Dancing  Similar to diving; this event is held at the high chair, and involves a sippy cup full of milk.  You may shake, twirl, bounce and launch the cup into the air, all while wildly flailing your arms, singing loudly and nodding your head in time to the Miss Lori’s Schoolhouse music playing in the background.  Additional points awarded for style.  My personal favorite move is “The Simba”: holding your sippy cup over your head as if presenting The Lion King, then promptly turning it upside down and pouring milk all over yourself.  It’s my mom’s favorite move.

Floor Food Competition  This is a single-competitor event that takes place entirely on the floor.  You must locate and consume all stale Cheerios, dog kibble, dust bunnies, leaves and the things my mom calls “OHNODON’TTOUCHIT!” as quickly as possible.  Additional points awarded for consumption of live floor food (example: bugs).

Wrestling  Oh, you think toddlers are too young for wrestling?  I beg to differ.  This competition could also be called “Avoid Wearing Pants.”  You must flip and flop, tuck and roll, stand up and bounce, and even attempt to Swan Dive off the changing table in an effort to avoid wearing pants while your opponent attempts to dress you.  Additional points awarded if you distract them by laughing adorably.  Gold medal if they give up and just let you run around in a diaper.  My mom says I’m better than Ali when it comes to pants wrestling.

Hurling  No, not that kind of hurling.  This is the kind where you throw things at things.  Another event in which additional points are awarded for creativity.  While I could win some points by throwing my cow across the room, I win big points if I throw my cow and pig – at the same time – at the dog.  The louder the hurling, the better.  Super extra points if you knock a glass off the table.  Gold medal if you knock mom’s coffee cup out of her hand.

And there you have it.  The Toddler Olympics are a work in progress; additional games will be added as skill levels advance.  I have big plans for when I figure out how to run on two legs…

Happy Monday,

Miles

Monday Miles: Suggested Food Pyramid

Monday Miles is a weekly column written by my incredibly awesome (and obviously brilliant) son, Miles.  Enjoy!

Happy Monday, readers!  Can you believe it’s been seven whole days since you heard from me?  That’s 14 naps for me, and zero for my mom and dad.  Unless you count “resting your eyes.”  In that case, we’re at 14-37.

My mom suffers from an unhealthy obsession of all things healthy.  I am blaming Michelle Obama, for brainwashing her with this:

Thanks you for telling me how to eat, DEMOCRACY.

Thank you for telling me how to eat, DEMOCRACY.

I applaud my mom’s constant monitoring of fruits, veggies, grains and protein.  She’s still on the fence about dairy, and has “almond milk” on the list of things I’m supposed to try this month (spoiler alert: this will be dumped onto the dining room floor).  While she is hawk-like in her monitoring efforts of my meal intake (and my dad’s…poor guy), I think my mom has failed to realize there are a few important food groups missing.

I’ve drafted a “suggested” food pyramid for her, styled in the original food pyramid fashion.  You know, the one that let us eat twelve gloriously gluten filled servings of bread a day.  Ah, the good old days…

Suggested Food Pyramid

  1. The Cat: A diet rich in fur is important.  It helps you stay warm in winter.
  2. Zebra: Everyone should have a wooden zebra to carry around in their mouth at all times, impeding the invasion of broccoli and sippy cups filled with almond milk.
  3. Kibble: A type of “whole grains” that smells like beef jerky.  Much better than those flavorless cereal puffs she’s constantly pouring on my high chair table.
  4. Important Papers: Did you know adults should have 25 grams of dietary fiber a day?  Eating paper is a good way to get extra fiber, and will also help you straighten up that desk ASAP.  The more important the papers, the better.  Last week I ate part of my mom’s W-2.  It was delicious.
  5. Floor Food: I cannot stress the importance of picking up every single thing off of the floor and putting it in your mouth.  Your body will “crave” certain foods when you are deficient in certain vitamins and minerals.  Floor food is an excellent way to get everything that’s lacking, and more!

My mom just might be reading this, and she may be concerned with the items listed in my suggested food pyramid.  Fear not, mom…I was kind enough to create a food pyramid for you!

Mom’s Suggested Food Pyramid

  1. Wine (red)
  2. Wine (white)
  3. Wine (blush)
  4. Invisible Cookies: My mom doesn’t allow cookies in the house, but sometimes my dad is super cool and brings home Oreos.  Mom will always say, “Why did you get those?!”  Then, when no one is looking, she eats seven cookies.  In 10 minutes, she reaches her daily caloric intake allotment.  This is obviously deserving of its own box in the food pyramid, because if we all ate more Oreos, we’d spend less time eating spinach and more time doing fun things, like watching me climb on top of dangerously high furniture.
  5. Handfuls of My Cereal: She buys those Gerber Puffs for herself.  I’m on to your games, woman.

And now for a cat fur and paper floor food sandwich.

Good night,

Miles