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The Origin of the Child Leash

Seems to be quite the hot topic with a lot of parents. To leash, or not to leash. Fuck’s sake, some kids I see running wild could also use a matching mussel, perhaps Hello Kitty will bring out a range for Christmas this year. One can only hope.

In all seriousness, I am not a fan of the leash. I don’t even really like to tether the dog, but have no choice as she isn’t quite as up on the English language as our 4 year old human.

After reading some rant today on Facebook about a child of a leash I got to thinking about the lighter side of child abuse. One of the posts was carrying on about some old lady pulling a kid along like it was a resentful pug unwilling to take a bath. Disgusting to say the least. Another post started raving on about how we have not needed leashes for children in the past, so why all of a sudden do we need them now.

Hold that thought….. Have you ever asked yourself the question: What is the origin of theLouis15 child leash?……

If not then never mind, I did all the work for you. Turns out there is actually some kind of circa 1990 style HTML homage to the history of restraining your toddlers. From what I have determined, this whole leash business started early in the 17th century, perhaps late 16th century. (Although this website makes note of telling us they have found no evidence in the 16th century yet).

Take a look at this baby. It is a painting of a young Louis XV with a child leash on. I highly doubt the leash is of any consequence that young Louis pictured here would turn out to be
known as Louis the Beloved, but perhaps being restricted to a one meter radius around his caregiver  fostered a sense of empathy.

Hell, good enough for the French, good enough for… ummm…. Just don’t bind your child folks, it isn’t a dog.

Oh yeah, after almost a year without so much as a whisper on the blog, I am back. 🙂

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Building a Kid’s Kitchen for Dummie’s

Last year, we wanted to do something different, something cool for our little guy for Christmas.

Do you have one of those old TV cabinets from the 90’s that no longer have a purpose? startWell, we didn’t, but we found one for less than $20. After about a week of procrastination, inadvertently injuring myself, and some final touches, we have ourselves a functioning kid’s play kitchen. It is all painted in chalkboard paint too, so he can go for his life with the drawing. Which is the flavour of the month right now, along with cooking. 🙂

Note, i work in an office…. I am certainly no handyman, but i managed to pull this off.. 🙂

1. The painting (and 2sanding). I decided to paint the majority of the cabinet before cutting holes etc.. not sure why, but i think it ended up being a good call. I also had to sand the varnish off prior to this..

2. Cutting holes and stuff. So, i decided to go and buy a tap and a silver mixing bowl. The bowl would act as my sink basin, and the tap, well, it’s a tap. I borrowed a jig-saw from my father-in-law. Not having actually used one of these things before, i was a bit concerned…. But of course, i did not let him know i was a total DIY noob….

holesI spent about two hours boring out a hole to fit the saw bit into… after some serious finger pain, i was there. The hole/s were then cut. Measured expertly by drawing around the bowl and tap with a pen, and taking off ‘about’ a centimetre.

After that ordeal, i glued and screwed (hey, that rhymed) the sink and tap into place.

3. Oven and Fridge Doors. Next were the makeshift doors. I had originally taken off the original doors as they were damaged. I ran up to the local hardware store and gave them my measurements. Then i got to the painting, again. Once completed, i thendoors got them both on. The oven door also folds down, so i put in a few screwed in chains that hold it up to stop little hands and feet getting hurt.

4. Final Touches. I couldn’t believe my work. I had pulled off the impossible, for under $250. My partner designed a window for the kitchen, and went out to get some toy goodies to complete the set. The window is an A3 frame with a custom Pokemon themed garden. I think it’s pretty bad ass.. Well, below is the result. I am happy to say it was a big hit on Christmas day with all the kids.

There is something nice about a hand made gift. We both felt good about it, and i hope one day he looks back and thinks, ‘damn, my parents were awesome, they made that kitchen. I should do something for my kids like that’. Then it will be mission complete. 🙂

DSC_0110If you would like a list of items and/or some detailed instructions for something similar, let me know via the contact page. I am more than happy to lend you some of my new found knowledge. 🙂

Insulted by a toddler

For those of you who have read my ordeal with potty training, i am now experiencing a new kind of pain. Well not really, i did laugh about it. 🙂

The other day, our first mate was perched atop the toilet once again. Sorting out his toddler business in peace. He seems to want to be alone while going now, to which i understand, and am quite thankful.

Anyway, he calls out ‘guys, i need help’… Now, generally this means he needs to wash his hands, get off the toilet, or something to that effect. So we take turns.

‘Your turn’ she says with a big smile… Fine, i will go..

I get in there and he is looking at me funny. ‘Dad go away, i want to be alone’. Fine, whatever, just don’t call me again to say that.

‘Guys, i need help’… Muuhaha, ‘your turn baby’.. Sweet revenge.

My partner comes running out, ‘this is your one, he needs boy help’. I start thinking, fuck, i AM NOT going to hold it for him. Wonder what could be ‘up’.

Oh, that’s what’s up. The little bugger had been playing with himself, as all boys do. He looks at me a little confused. So i try to do the comforting Dad thing, ‘it’s ok, that happens some times and it is normal’.

HAH! He was not concerned at all! It was a trap!

‘Dad, my doodle is big. It is bigger than yours, go tell Mum’.

Little fucker. My manhood, insulted by a three year old. God damn.

Anyway, i obliged, went and told her. Of course it was met with hysterical laughter…..

Well, i found it funny, hope you did too. If you have anything similar to share, please comment! 🙂

My Dad moment for the day

This morning started how it generally does. Get up, let the dog out, have a coffee and a smoke, go back to bed, cuddle the missus, get up, second coffee and smoke, let the dog out again, feed the bird, toddler wakes up, feed him, get dressed for work.

Today, while putting my tie on in the mirror, our toddler wanders over.

“why aren’t you putting pretties on your face dad?.

“well, Im a boy, so i don’t put pretties on my face, but Mum does.”

Shit…. what have i just said to him?! I thought. Both my partner and I think it is important to teach him that it is ok for people to be different, and do things other people don’t. I realised i may have just contradicted myself in that moment.

I respond quickly. “But some boys wear pretties, you can wear them too if you like. But i don’t like to.”

“oh, ok.” And he toddles off about his business. Waving his ‘wand’ (a stick from the backyard) yelling some Harry Potter spell at the dog.

Well, thought I’d add this. I felt like it was my good dad moment for the day. 🙂

Toddler Potty Inception

about rightFor anyone that has a toddler, they will, or are about to know that shit stained, hair pulling adventure that is toilet training. My partner and myself have a now 3/1/2 year old boy, who i am very proud to say is now totally potty trained…. Good bye nappies!!! If only that were the case, i have been talked into having another one of these things, but that is a story for another time.

The Early Days

We began our journey nearly a year ago to the day. My partners love for everything pirate had driven her to purchase a pirate themed potty training book, complete with sticker chart and hat! Arrrrrr!!

Excellent, we had a theme, we had time, we had toddler interest. We had a everything set for a smooth transition from nappies to the porcelain hole of dreams. What we didn’t expect was just how long and arduous a road we had ahead of us, not even Jack Sparrow himself could have prepared us for the murky waters ahead.

So, we set sail one unassuming evening, i would be the captain of the ship. We decided it would be better to make this a boys thing to begin with. Off we went after dinner, up to the bathroom, our toddler, pirate hat adorned, perched atop his new shiny green potty. Everything was going great, and i began to read the book. (without pissing myself with laughter) I had my surly pirate accent down pat, “Prepare to be boarded!” we yelled. He didnt go that first time, but did not protest either. We thought this showed promise…

For the next few weeks we sat, every night, waiting in anticipation. Then finally, he pee’ed!! Straight down into Davey Jones’ locker, take that. With joy and excitement we congratulated him. He was particularly impressed with the jolly rodger sticker now pinned to his hat. What a good job.

At this point, you are probably thinking, great stuff, we are almost there. Well, the 2ft tall first mate had other ideas.

Regression

We are still not sure to this day what had happened. But, for some unknown reason he had just stopped going. Lost total interest. We trolled over countless pages online searching for an answer. The general message of the majority was to let it go, he will become interested again. Ok, we went with that, it required no additional effort, see how it goes.

Months past, every now and then one of us would mention the potty, only to fall on deaf ears. That was it, his 3rd birthday now closing in, we had to take some action..

Potty Training v2.0

We started again, just mentioning the potty a little bit more every day. We were soon to receive a response from our first mate. However, not the response we had wanted, or came prepared for. Now, even the quietest mention of the potty was met with ferocious opposition. Not the standard toddler protest, more a Game of Thrones esk Trial by Combat. What had gone wrong…

At first, we thought he must be scared of the potty, or perhaps scared of that little bit of independence he could now see over the toy clad horizon. Either way, the situation was hopeless. We rolled back our approach, went to the shops and got him to pick out some underwear, Disney’s Cars was the pick of the bunch in his eyes. Ok awesome, if he likes these he might just wear them, he picked them right?

Oh so wrong we were. Being the clever little bugger that he is, he soon connected the dots. “They are onto me, these underwear things mean they are trying that potty business again”.

Now the underwear were met with the same ear piercing protests.

I even spent an entire day, at the advice of some online resource, sitting him down on the potty every 1/2 hour for a day. So i did, all day on a Saturday. Nothing, not even a drop of liquid yellow gold. I gave up after he sat for 10 minutes, got off, then disappeared to his room. Not more than 2 minutes later, “im pooey”….. ARRRRR, OF COURSE YOU ARE!!!!!!!

Ok, abandon ship.

Light at the End of the Tunnel

Many more months went past. My partner, reading potty training blogs, parenting websites, books, asking for advice anywhere she could find it. Me, sitting at work, wondering what we can do to win this battle. Then, it struck me, a battle is just what it was. Which is why we could never win, Hannibal knew that he didnt have the numbers to win, so he developed a strategy to even up the odds. Why couldn’t we do the same to the toddler potty army.

I started Googling again. But this time using words like ‘regression’, ‘protest’, ‘resistance’. Then i’d struck gold, i’d found treasure island!!!

The answer was not The Pirate Potty, it was toddler inception, and it made total sense.

Toddler Inception

We would make it appear like it was his idea to use the potty the whole time. Mr Cobb would have been so proud. It was genius.

So we began. Step one was to get our fortnightly fix of nappies from the shop. When we got home, we made him take them to the bathroom. We explained that wee and poo have to go to the toilet, and it was his job to make sure that happens. So, nappies, required for said wee and poo, also belonged in the bathroom. After some tears, he could not argue with our logic and moved his items into the bathroom.

Step two, we reinforced the “it is your job to make sure wee and poo goes where it needs to, and it is your job to tell us if you need a bum change”. We then let him be in dirty nappies until he told us, it was his responsibility, after all. We told him that we dont care if he does not use the potty, that is up to him.

Then, one morning while i was changing him, BOOM. “I should wear underwear and use the toilet”. I thought, noooo, it’s a trap. So i paid no attention, and continued with the nappie change. Later that evening i mentioned the conversation to my partner. It was time, we could feel it.

The next day, HE decided to use the TOILET, not the potty. That’s right, no cleaning that fucking plastic bowl every few hours, he was straight up there… Yeh buddy.

Just like that, it was done. We have never looked back.

– I write this for anyone who is having similar troubles. Good luck.

-Best

Ray