…my daughter is interested in her fears.

Any time she convinces herself that something is terrifying – like diseases or monsters in Minecraft or Venom – she does this weird dance where she insists she doesn’t want anything to do with it for like a month, then she demands to know everything about it. Which is why she now wants a Venom stuffie for Christmas.

I’m fascinated and relieved by it. She still has fears she hasn’t quite worked out, but she has this organic way of processing the rest of them.

My other daughter wants to have a sleepover in a graveyard and become a bug doctor. I’m not sure if having no fears is better. But I’m in for a hell of an observational study.


…my daughter and I are going to make an ornament.

This year, my younger daughter hung up three different handmade ornaments featuring a picture of herself on our Christmas tree. My older daughter didn’t, as there weren’t any.

These aren’t high quality decorations. Not being dismissive about it, they just aren’t. They’re little inexpensive crafts she made in school, or which her teacher made in school. And somehow, despite the two of them having the same teachers, my older daughter just doesn’t have any similar crafts in the Christmas bin.

She got jealous as kids do. So I promised we’d make one together. I have no idea what it’s going to look like, and I could probably get away with just punching a hole in a photo and calling it a day.

But we’re going to put some effort in it. We’ve got a project to work on together. And unfortunately, being that I’m turning into an insufferable old shit, projects are like the greatest thing. So I guess this is a double duty gift and she doesn’t know it yet.


…I can create custom primer books.

My daughter refuses to read. She can read; she just doesn’t want to. Mostly because she’s got two choices: either the story is good, but too far beyond her current level, or it’s at her level and the payoff is some shit like, “Brushing teeth is fun.”

Finding books she’s gives a fuck about has proven to be tough. So I wrote and illustrated a Level 1 book about Tom’s butt and his fart problems. She read that faster than anything else.

I’m spending my Thanksgiving break writing sequels.


…we’re finally going to recycle that box.

My mother-in-law bought a couch like 6 weeks ago that was delivered in a huge box. Naturally my kids wanted to keep it.

I was less excited about losing roughly 1/3 of our living room space. Fortunately for me, we’re putting up Christmas stuff this week, including a tree, so the argument has been settled. That box is outta here.

Then I just gotta wait like another 6 months for Christmas nonsense to be over and boom: I got my living room back. Some plans just need patience.


…I have my kids’ favorite pancake recipe memorized.

I don’t remember many baking recipes by heart because I don’t make them enough to bother. But this one gets used almost every week.

Which is good news for me because it means I have less to dick around with in the kitchen when I’m tired and cranky. I can just get straight to work. Sometimes today is worth it not because I’m happy or fulfilled, but because I’m just more efficient at all the other stuff. I’ll take it.

This isn’t a recipe blog, but if somehow you got here looking for one, here you go.

In a dry ingredients bowl, mix: 1.5 cups flour, 1 tbsp sugar, 1 tsp salt, 3.5 tsps baking powder, 1 tbsp cinnamon, 1 tbsp flax seed if you have it.

In a wet ingredients bowl, mix 2 cups milk, 1/2 cup pumpkin, and one egg. Mix until smooth then blend in 3 tbsp melted butter.

Dump wet into dry and mix until lightly combined. Then add as many chocolate chips as you want. Mix until well combined, but still kinda lumpy. Let it sit for like 10 minutes and then cook it on a pan the way you cook any other pancakes.

Serve with whatever. I’m not your dad.