It still feels strange to say this, but the Twins have started school.
While I have no doubt in my mind that my little geniuses could already slaughter Doogie Howser at Jeopardy (it would be legen–wait for it–dary), this first foray into the academic world is not related to their obviously high cognitive abilities, but instead an opportunity to begin their formal education early. You see, while they were still chillaxing in their mother’s uterine jacuzzi, we got them on the lengthy waiting list for a fairly exclusive toddler class conveniently held on my college’s campus, and we’d watched them slowly climb their way to the top ever since.
Thus, as the new school year approached, the all-important question as to whether they would be granted access to the program hung in the air like the faint, gaseous remnants of a diaper blowout. Our hopes high, we gathered with the other families in our District who had children on the waiting list for a public announcement of the class’s new students. As the odd, eccentric university spokeswoman took the stage, the tension was so thick that it needed to cut carbohydrates from its diet.
But as luck would have it, our progeny were both selected, punctuated by thumbs-up-shaped balloons falling from the rafters and commemorative t-shirts emblazoned with bow-wearing stick figures being shot into the masses. The Twins had been chosen!
Tags: "They grow up so fast.", Barney Stinson, chillax, crying, cutting carbs, dissertation, Doogie Howser, Early Childhood, education, family, fantastically-executed plush animal voices, father of twins, Han Solo, How I Met Your Mother, Hunger Games, iPhone, Jeff Goldblum, Jeopardy, Neil Patrick Harris, new parent, Ph. D., Pre-Pre-School, pre-school, pregnancy, SAHD, school, sharing, Star Wars, stay at home dad, The Fly, The Reaping, toddler-parent class, Twincidents, twins, uterine jacuzzi, wife
My daughter hooked her arm securely around mine as I held her at my hip–a cripplingly cute mannerism of hers that melts me to my core every single time.
Vocalizing airplane sound effects, I made an extravagant production of swooping my giggling passenger down to the floor to pick up each member of the Hundred Acre Wood institutionalized as her Bedtime Crew, currently featuring Piglet (her go-to daytime stuffty) as well as Winnie the Pooh and Tigger (the night-shift support staff who allow for optimal snugglization).
Her teeth brushed and hands washed, she knew we were coming up on bedtime and began her nightly wind-down ritual: gripping Piglet and Company, sticking her beloved right thumb in her mouth, and embracing day’s end with open arms and heavy eyelids.
Our son, however–currently in his mother’s arms–was performing his own nightly routine: maniacal arm-flails punctuated by Oscar-worthy whines. Never ready to pack it in, he’ll dash for the playroom or point at the turned-off tv in a last-ditch effort to stay up just a little longer, to milk as much out of the day as possible. There are still so many blocks to stack, so many books to read, so many Sing-Along Songs to groove to.
And while his unrelenting desire to be awake can be burdensome, I don’t ever fault him for it.
He gets it from me.
Tags: "Leave everything on the field", "muh", "Ni-night", "They grow up so fast.", 100th post, 500-Disc DVD Special Edition Bonus Feature, a chip off the old block, A. A. Milne, academia, annotated bibliography, bedtime, beer, book, crotch shot, crying, date night, daughter, diaper, dishwashing, Disney, Disney Sing-Along Songs, family, father of twins, How I Met Your Mother, Hundred Acre Wood, laundry, legen--wait for it--dary, legendary, Lego, life, Magna Doodle, milestone, mind-blowing cuteness, new parent, Oscar (Academy Award), Ph. D., Piglet, pixie voice, playroom, Pooh Corner, poop, Pop Warner football, SAHD, sing-along, Sippy Cup, Skype, son, stay at home dad, stay-at-home dad/Ph. D. student hybrid, stuffed animals, tantrum, Tell Me Stuff To Point At In My Favorite Word Book, thirst for life, thumb sucking, Tigger, Twincidents, Twinfamy, twins, wife, Winnie the Pooh
I just got the numbers in today and I couldn’t believe it.
I double- and triple-checked them, just to be sure I wasn’t mistaken before taking the news public, but they were, indeed, accurate.
As it turns out, according to the year-end statistical report compiled by my fleet of information superhighway patrol robots, 2011 was Twinfamy’s biggest, best, most successful year to date!
And I have you, O Loyal Reader, to thank.
Since its humble beginnings eons ago in May 2011, I have watched this fine publication grow from absolutely nothing to the kajillions of you frequenting the site every day, and I wanted to take this opportunity to offer you all my sincere gratitude.
Many years ago, in a time before the Twins and even before my wife and I began dating, I was a Writer. I never did it professionally, but I did do it passionately, daily, and religiously, and will say that a few times, I came pretty darn close to a paid gig. However, it was only a matter of time before I needed a real career instead of a speculative one, and so as I checked American Dream Boxes and became a teacher, husband, and DVR owner I watched my writing time grind to a screeching halt. Ever since then, I’ve haphazardly logged hours on various unfinished writing projects I still completely believe in but just haven’t had the time to realize.
Then came my children.
Tags: "They grow up so fast.", 11 months old, 2011, 2012, Anno Domini, archives, before children vs. after children, breakneck, children, creativity, DVR, family, father of twins, gratitude, Happy New Year, information superhighway, information superhighway patrol robots, inspiration, lap around the sun, moron, my past life, new parent, O Loyal Reader, oxymoron, Ph. D., recession, Robocop, SAHD, statistics, stay at home dad, teaching, thank you, thanks, The American Dream, The Good Old Days, The rest is history, this fine publication, Twincidents, Twinfamy, Twinfants, twins, unfinished, wife, writer, writing
Remember the unbridled childhood excitement of Christmas Morning? The insomnia-inducing obsession with the sheer possibilities of the bounty Santa Claus would surely leave under the tree? Staring at the ceiling at 4:00 am, debating asking your parents if you can just cut the nonsense and get this party started right now?
As we grow older, however, there seems to be less and less magic each year, which ironically provides less and less of a window for acceptance to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Is it lame that at 29 years old, I’m still waiting for that owl?
But I’m thrilled to say that after believing it was gone forever, I’m suddenly feeling that familiar old Christmas Morning anticipation once again because starting today, my wife and I will be orchestrating that magic for the Twins, as we prepare to give them their First Christmas Ever.
At 11 months, they’re not by any means at an age where they can fully comprehend all that’s happening, but we’re in no hurry for them to grow up any quicker than they already have, and we see this year as a prelude–a taste of many happy memories to come.
And now, on The Night Before Christmas, as I look all through the house (with my dog, the only stirring creature, pawing at my shin for attention now that the Twins are down for a long winter’s nap) I see decorations that will become ingrained in the Twins’ subconscious as Christmas-defining relics, just as my parents magically transformed $4.99 pharmacy purchases into The Singing Christmas Bear I Played With Every Year While We Decorated the Tree, The Christmas Carol Book with Which I Led the Whole Family in Rousing Sing-Alongs, and The Nativity Scene with Which I Fabricated Alternate Biblical Storylines Involving He-Man Saving Baby Jesus from Cobra Commander with the Help of the Three Wise Musketeers, the Ninja Donkey and the Jedi Cow.
Tags: "They grow up so fast.", 11 months old, A Christmas Story, action figure, alternate biblical storylines, Baby Jesus, breakfast, child development, childhood, chimney, Christmas, Christmas carol, Christmas Morning, Christmas Tree, Cobra Commander, cookie, cow, decoration, dog, donkey, double-sided tape, family, father of twins, figgy pudding, first Christmas, G. I. Joe, Happy New Year, Harry Potter, He-Man, hoarse, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, insomnia, Jedi, Jedi Cow, Jesus Christ, magic, Masters of the Universe, Merry Christmas, my dad, my mom, my parents, nap, Nativity Scene, new parent, ninja, Ninja Donkey, O Loyal Reader, obsession, ornament, relic, SAHD, Santa Claus, sing-along, sleep, Star Wars, stay at home dad, staying up late, stocking, subconscious, teddy bear, The Christmas Carol Book With Which I Led the Whole Family in Rousing Sing-Alongs, The Nativity Scene With Which I Fabricated Alternate Biblical Storylines Involving He-Man Saving Baby Jesus From Cobra Commander With the Help of the Three Wise Musketeers, The Night Before Christmas, the Ninja Donkey and the Jedi Cow., The Singing Christmas Bear That I Played With Every Year While We Decorated the Tree, Three Musketeers, Three Wise Musketeers, Three Wisemen, tiny wandering hands, Twincidents, twins, We Wish You a Merry Christmas, wife, World's Sweetest Dump Truck
Someone Who Shall Remain Nameless: So are you still being Mr. Mom?
Me: You know, the term “Dad” works just fine.
Sure, I could have just let it go. I could have replied, “Yes, I am still being Mr. Mom.” thus avoiding the awkward pause that ensued. Don’t take it personally, I used to tell myself. It’s just a (tired, lame, unfunny) joke. But this terminology is pinned on me often and I have recently decided I am done with just letting it go.
It’s not that I feel emasculated wrangling the Twins all week. I challenge any “man’s man” who thinks stay-at-home parenting is for sissies to actually try it for one day. (In fact, I imagine it could make for a thoroughly entertaining reality show, with each episode culminating in a grown man sobbing.) It’s definitely not easy, but at the same time it’s also the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done. Many fathers would jump at the opportunity to spend as much time with their children as I do, especially at this age. I blinked when they were eight months old and was suddenly thrown into a DeLorean which promptly accelerated to 88 miles per hour, traversing space and time to today, as I open my eyes and find them eleven months old. Until I can get the Flux Capacitor to flux again, I make an effort each day to take it all in (and document it in HD) because I know how fleeting babyhood is.
Tags: "boofer", "They grow up so fast.", 11 months old, 88 miles per hour, anatomy, baba, Baby Talk Latin, Back to the Future, bottle, car, children, choice of words, Christopher Lloyd, cooking, crying, cute-ify, cuteness, daughter, DeLorean, diaper, diaper bag, diapies, dishwashing, documentarian, documentation, Don't take it personally, drawing the line, duty (hahaha you said "duty"), emasculation, envy, euphemism, falsetto, family, fart, father of twins, Flux Capacitor, gender, gender roles, HD, homemaking, homemaking the hell out of it, It's just a joke, joke, June Cleaver, language acquisition, laundry, Leave it to Beaver, Man Card, man's man, manhood, Michael J. Fox, Micheal Keaton, movie reference, Mr. Mom, my children are smarter than everyone else's, my dad, my mom, my parents, my prerogative, nerd glasses, nerds, new parent, nomenclature, open-minded, pee standing up, phrases, pink, pink clothing, princess, purse, read, reading, reality tv, SAHD, sarcasm, school, scientific proof, scientific research, Shakespeare-caliber vocalizations, sissy, snark, sobbing, sockies, socks, stay at home dad, storytime, tangent, terminology, Textbook Parenting Enthusiast, The King's English, The Only Adult in the Room Most of the Time, The Research, time machine, time-travel, twin-wrangling, twins, uncomfortable, urination, vehicle, William Shakespeare