children, family, humor, kids, motherhood, parenting


At the beginning of each school year, I take the boys for a flu vaccine.  T.Puzzle shared his concern that he wasn’t looking forward to being ‘shot’.  Turns out, he thought the doctor was going to use a gun, and apparently shoot the vaccine at him at close range.  Once I explained there were no fire arms involved, he was visibly relieved.

Full Speed lets his imaginary gun loose on T.Puzzle (upright legs in the foreground). This could be where T.Puzzle’s fear of guns began.

When it was time for the actual vaccinations, the kindly nurse determined the nasal mist was the way to go.  Full Speed took his mist like a man.  When it was little T.Puzzle’s turn, he began to crack under the pressure.  Full Speed looked at him and stated, “Look, T.Puzzle.  I just had the nasal mist and it didn’t kill me.  See?”  He then proceeds to flex his manly arms, stops short and fakes a violent, spasmodic death on the floor.  It managed to break the tension and T.Puzzle inhaled to the best of his ability (it was rather pitiful).  As we were checking out, the receptionist handed over a receipt.  Full Speed snatched it away and declared rather forcefully, “I am now going to sign this as President of the United States!”  The receptionist cracked up and this only worsened the tomfoolery.  Pretty soon T.Puzzle joins in and the reception area quickly turned into a showcase of silliness.  Naturally, another office worker pipes in, “You certainly have your hands full.  What a couple of characters!”

At press time, no word of a vaccine against maddening behavior.

children, health, life in pictures, mommyhood, terrible threes

A ‘Full’ Life

I took little T.Puzzle for his pre-op physical. He still holds on to an element of three year old unpredictability that makes trips to the doctor more exciting than they should be. When the doctor prepares to examine his mouth, he clamps it shut and throws his hands protectively over his lips.

The doctor switches gears.

“Why don’t I look in your ears instead?” she asks little T.Puzzle.

He immediately shoots both his hands up and theatrically covers his ears. He also manages a sliver of a smile while maintaining a rigidly closed mouth.


The doctor turns to me.

“Looks like someone is really full of it today.”

“He’s pretty much full of it every single day,” I say.

Despite his contrary efforts, Little T.Puzzle passed his physical with flying colors.

Luckily, he’s full of dimples, too, and that has saved him more times that I can count.

Little T.Puzzle prepares to dive into the most ginormous slice of pepperoni pizza I have ever seen courtesy of the Mellow Mushroom.
children, health, life in pictures, marital blissishness, parenting

Sit Back

I decided T.Puzzle needed to be seen by the pediatrician. He sounded terrible and still was a walking, dripping science experiment. His fever was gone, I just wanted to make sure whatever he had wasn’t in his lungs or ears.

Mad Dog picked up Full Speed from school, took him to lunch and than met me and T.Puzzle at the doctor’s. As they pulled up I noticed that Mad Dog had a freshly shaved head. That could only mean one thing. So did Full Speed.

Mad Dog and I don’t see eye to eye when it comes to the length of our boys’ hair. Since we have moved to Florida and our boys are incredibly active, I understand that it makes sense to have little hair in the summer months. However, during the winter here, I want to let their hair grow. As a peace offering, they handed me a gift card to Burger King that said Team Edward with a pic of my favorite Twilight character. At least Full Speed wasn’t completely shaved; he still had a little hair on top. I had to let it go.

Full Speed realizes that T.Puzzle is still under the weather. He turns up the protective empathy and is downright directive and adorable. First, he offers T.Puzzle his toy from his Burger King lunch (which T.Puzzle takes ownership of with glee) and then he grabs T.Puzzle’s hand and leads him into the office.

Once we are back in a room waiting for the doctor, Full Speed orders T.Puzzle to sit on the cushioned bench and tells him what to expect when the nurse or doctor comes in. T.Puzzle  is mostly game for all this instruction until it is time for the removal of his Lightning McQueen shoes (he’s very attached).

While we wait, I attempt to read the boys a story about Ernie and Cookie Monster. It sort of holds their interest but honestly, I feel like I’m in the middle of a wrestling ring being pummeled into oblivion. Sitting still and quietly is not their style. Soon, T.Puzzle thinks he is cute and starts punching and kicking the book. He is warned, admonished and then punished. He screams ‘sorry!’ at the top of his lungs. In a small exam room, his voice really carries.

When the doctor arrives (she’s unusually pleasant and helpful in Mad Dog’s presence, hmmm…) Full Speed is right in her face ‘helping’ her examine T.Puzzle. We have to keep holding him back and redirecting because he is certain it is his job to assist. At one point the doctor asks if T.Puzzle can cough for her. She asks Full Speed to demonstrate what she needs T.Puzzle to do and Full Speed proceeds to fake cough all over her (lovely!). T.Puzzle just watches in dazed amusement, he doesn’t cough but he does get the all clear. His lungs are good and his ears are clear. All we can do is sit back and patiently wait for the rest of his cold symptoms to run their course. If only all aspects of parenting were that easy.