Sunday, November 13, 2016

November 13: Christmas Decorating, Exhaustion, Classic Saint Marty

Spent the afternoon putting up Christmas decorations on my front porch.  Every year, one member of our family chooses a theme for the decorations.  We have had Beanie Baby Christmas, Candy Land Christmas, Blue Christmas, Just Like the Ones I Used to Know Christmas.  This year, my daughter chose Gingerbread Christmas.

Of course, putting up Christmas decorations is never a completely joyous occasion.  There's usually some arguing and swearing.  Today, I had to go out and buy a new staple gun at the local Ace Hardware.  I hate going into hardware stores.  Feel totally out of my element.  I purchased a staple gun, but I got the wrong staples.  Had to go back.

Tonight, we have some gingerbread houses to decorate.  Frosting and gum drops and sprinkles and M&Ms.  The whole shebang.  Hopefully, there won't be too much bloodshed before they are all done.  I hope that I can stay awake.  It's been a really busy weekend.

Today's episode of Classic Saint Marty first aired four years ago, right after Barack Obama was elected for a second term as President of the United States.  Things have changed.  A lot.

November 15, 2012:  Humbug, Giving Thanks, Potty Training

"Bah!" said Scrooge.  "Humbug!"

Scrooge utters this little phrase so many times during A Christmas Carol that it has become part of the public consciousness, like "Frankly, my dear" or "I'll get you my pretty."  Everybody knows what "bah humbug" means and where it comes from.  If I say "bah humbug," I am expressing a particularly Scrooge-ish attitude toward something, whether it's Christmas or the latest episode of The Walking Dead.  I am basically saying, "This whole idea is a crock of shit."

That's a pretty unusual opening for my Blessing Thursday post.  I should be happy and exuberant about my subject.  Blessings are positive forces.  They fulfill hope or desire, whether spoken or unspoken.  I am ambivalent about my topic this morning because it has to do with one of my least favorite parental duties.

For the past couple years, we have been trying to potty train my son.  The process has been a series of successes and regressions.  My son will urinate in his potty.  I have seen him piss so much that I thought it was going to overflow the bowl.  My son is not attached to his pee.  He will surrender it willingly.  His poop, on the other hand, seems to be gold-plated.  He doesn't want to part with it.  He would prefer to stand in a corner, with his legs crossed, instead of sitting down and having a healthy BM.  Since he started potty training on Monday, we have gone through about eight or nine pairs of underwear and pants.  It hasn't been pleasant.

It was his preschool teacher who suggested simply switching to underwear.  Her reasoning went something like this:  if our son feels uncomfortable and gross when he craps his pants, he will choose to go on the toilet.  In theory, it sounds pretty good.  In practice, it kind of sucks.  At Burger King this evening, we went through two pairs of pants and underwear.  Not only does my son not care if he shits in his pants, but he also doesn't mind walking around with said fecal matter on his person.

I am not complaining, however.  I'm giving thanks.  My son will eventually grasp the concept of toilets. He'll realize that shit is gross.  It's just going to take a lot of soiled clothing to get there.  But he's on his way.  My daughter struggled with potty training, as well.  She was well into second grade before she had completely conquered this task.

For those parents who tell fairy tales of children who simply decide one day to quit diapers and use the toilet, Saint Marty has one thing to say:  "Bah!  Humbug!"

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