Putting the kids to bed

Two tips.

  1. When exploring the novelty of bathing your children in the master bathroom tub — a novelty because it is a jacuzzi-style tub with jets — be sure to check the cleanliness of said jets before turning them on. After I had recently finished soaping the boys we thought it was time to churn the water a bit so … rumble rumble … up powered the jets. And out spewed chunks of mildew fragments, breaking the surface of the water like so many moldy sub-launched ICBM’s and leaving the boys looking like they’d just had a brussel sprouts fight.
  2. Check the fishtank in the child’s bedroom for dead/dying marine life before letting him approach for the nighly feeding. You never know when the mundane task of apathetically flushing another dead fishie down the toilet will become a moment of sobbing emotional catharsis. Enough Nemo- or Bambi-viewings and sooner or later the kid will understand that a dead pet is not coming back. My oldest son dropped to his knees, sopping, bawling, and covered in mildew spew, folded his hands heavenward and immediately began telling his recently-deceased great-grandfather how to take care of Fred the fish. (Who knew the kid had even named it?)

Thank me later.