Helping Out

"Daddy, I want to help!" my daughter offers while I'm preparing lunch.

Ummmm...

My mind races to think of a way for her to "help".  Usually when Ladybug wants to help, I'm in the middle of something and I really don't need (or honestly want) any help.  Getting help from Ladybug means that Disco is going to see his sister helping and is going to offer his assistance too.  Then Celi doesn't want to be forgotten and wants to help out as well.

What could be a three minute job turns to something that lasts at least fifteen minutes.

I'm just so wrapped up in getting to the next thing to do, I sometimes don't see the positive advantages I can take with the kids during these times.  Sure it's just a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, but it means a lot to them when they have a hand in accomplishing something.  Their faces light up when they can tell their mom they made something.

Aside from spending time doing things together factor, there is also the facet of teaching the kids a skill or craft.  Ladybug has been quite adept to cracking eggs by herself and preparing her waffles for breakfast.  It just took us showing her how to do it the right way.

I was replacing brake pads on my van recently and she wanted to come out and help.  I said okay and had her near me while I would loosen the lug nuts, remove the tire and replace the pads.  She'd ask her constant barrage of "why" questions and I did my best to sound like I knew what I was talking about.  I told her that I'm glad she takes an interest in helping me with the car because it's something I want her (especially as a girl) to be able to do herself if the time comes.  Did she actually "help" out at all?  Well if you call taking all the tools I was not using and lining them up on the driveway and then calling them "her tools", I assume you could say she did help out.

As a dad, it gives me a sense of accomplishment when you see your kids doing something you taught them.  Whether it's in the kitchen, under the car, a sport, or a hobby.  It makes me proud to be a dad during those times.


What about you?  Do you let your kids "help" out with projects or chores?

Be sure to check out Fatherhood Friday over at Dad-Blogs today.


Have a great weekend my friends.

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Security


"Daddy Paci?"  I hear this request as I get Celi out of bed in the  morning.  I move blankets and her pillow.  I get on the floor and search under her crib moving forgotten toys.  I spot one in the far corner just out of reach of my fingertips.  I usually use of the forgotten toys to help bring it within reach.  I find the paci and give it to my second daughter.

"Thank you, Daddy" and she runs off to start her morning.

When she's fussy, we just plug it in her mouth and she's fine.  It's one of those things we know we should have taken care of long ago, but like Disco's pooping habits, we haven't really been the best at following through.  And also like Disco's refusal to shed his diaper, it's her security.

Ladybug loved the a pacifier as well.  She'd lose them, we'd find them or buy some more.  By her first birthday she lost them all again.  We made the decision to just not buy anymore.  She'd ask for one and we'd tell her they're gone.  She didn't really  have a security item afterwards.  Not until her second birthday.  Gigi (my mother) sent Ladybug's birthday presents from New York and included was a 25th Anniversary Edition Care Bear.  Ladybug didn't know what in the world a Care Bear was, but it became her most prized possession.  Heart Bear never left her side.  It went with us to the store, to the doctor, everywhere.  We lost it for about a week and Gigi sent another one.  Heart Bear 2.0 wasn't a big hit.  It was like replacing a fish that died while you were on vacation.  It looked like your fish, but didn't feel like your fish.  It was found and after almost three years, Heart Bear helps her go to bed at night and comforts her when she's upset.

Disco wasn't big on the pacifier.  Since Emsters isn't either, I believe it has to do with being nursed.  He did however find cliched security in a blanket.  The blanket was a  baby shower gift from a co-worker.  I'm not sure how it started, but like Heart Bear, he took the blanket everywhere.  I've been guilty of having to drive across town around midnight to retrive the blanket from a relative's house.  Again like Heart Bear, it helps him sleep at night and calm him down as well.

With Celi's pacifiers, it's one of those things we know we need to cut out as soon as possible.  We know we have about six pacifiers in the house.  Currently we can only find one.  She went to bed on Sunday without one and she screamed for almost an hour.  She woke again later and screamed for another hour.  Sure enough when the kids woke up the next morning, one was found within 30 seconds.

We need to get her off the pacifier.  But she doesn't have a Heart Bear or a blanket to fall back on.  Do any of my six readers have any ideas on how to curb her habit?  Smoking maybe?

Have a great day my friends.

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From Boob to Bottle


We accomplished a pretty big transition with Em this month.  We went from full time breast feeding to formula all the time.  Of all the children, Em was nursed the longest. KC didn't nurse MaddSkillz very long because she couldn't keep up with supply and demand at the time.  Ladybug and Celi never would latch on and Disco nursed for three months.

When KC was nursing Disco, I was conflicted.  Sure with her nursing it meant she was the one getting up in the middle of the night and not me, but all nurse and no sleep make KC a grumpy grump.  Disco would nurse ALL the time.  When she wasn't nursing, she was pumping (I don't know where it all came from).  When I would feed Disco with the stored milk, he'd take the bottle contents and then be done eating pretty quick.  

So I suggested to KC that maybe she pump and then we feed Disco via bottle, that way she's not feeding him 23 hours a day and I could help out more.  I also needed her available more often than she was.  Apparently it didn't come across very nice because my suggestion was not taken and I even believe I was called a jerk.  Then at three months old, Disco pretty much took himself off the breast.

Unknown to me at that time, a special bond develops between a mother and her child while nursing.  To me, I saw a symbiote draining the life out of my wife.  I wasn't trying to come across like an insensitive jerk, I was trying to come up with a solution to our issues.  With those issues mainly consisting of her being a grumpy grump because she got no sleep the first three months of my son's life.  Couple that with trying to take care of things at home while I have to go into the office and work over time.  I was just trying to offer a way to help out.

So when it came time for Em to breastfeed, I didn't say a single word for fear of her cashing in my life insurance.  I was a pro at being a dad by this point and she would do her thing with the Emsters and I would take care of the other things.  I was at home more and actually worked from home so it helped a lot.  But still, the Em would eat all the time.  I made the suggestion about pumping and me feeding her again being a bit more sensitive about the issue.  The idea was shot down, but I was not called a jerk.  At least verbally. 

KC would pump and store for times she had to be away from the baby.  We rarely gave her formula. 

I preparation for her week of pampering, KC pumped and stored like a banshee.  We also started giving the baby formula more regularly.  The formula was usually given by me, but Em wouldn't take it.  She would spit it out, turn her head and push the bottle away.  It became a battle of wills.  I thought she'd eventually get hungry enough to take the formula, but she knew that Daddy is a pushover and gives in pretty easy.  Sure enough I was going to the freezer to defrost some milk for her.

I came to the conclusion, Em didn't trust the slop I was trying to pass off as sustenance.  I had told KC that if we want Emsters to take formula, she would have to feed it to her.  That way Em would know it is okay and safe for Daddy to feed it to her if needed.

It worked.

The week leading up to KC's trip, she decided that it was probably best to change her over to formula full time.  It was a hard decision for her to make, but it helped that she was out of town when it was done.

Emsters has taken the change quite nicely.  She's on more of a schedule for feedings than eating all the time.  We're also getting her feeding and sleeping times in sync up with the other kids.  I know it's easier for KC because we can get the baby down by 8:30 at the latest, which gives KC time to do her own thing.  

I know it's tough severing that bond she had with Em, and I know it's something I will NEVER understand.  Yet everything is going well.  Everyone is happy.  Well maybe not Daddy, because he's the one getting up at night to feed her now.  Now Daddy is the grumpy grump.

I know the topic of breastfeeding versus formula is very heated.  What are your thoughts on the subject?  Dads and Moms.

Have a great week my friends.

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American History - The Statue of Liberty


Since I'm gearing up for my trip to New York City I felt it was wise for me to learn my history on popular places and landmarks.  That way if my kids were to ask me about a certain place or landmark, I would be able to give them a complete history of said place or landmark.

I will start today with the Statue of Liberty.

The Beginning
The Statue of Liberty (originally called Liberty Enlightening the World (Frenchla Liberté éclairant le monde)) is a massive sculpture that stands on Liberty Island in New York Harbor. Designed by Frédéric Bartholdi, who was inspired by the view of the French law professor and politician Édouard René de Laboulaye that any "memorial to [American] independence" would properly be a joint project of the French and American nations, the Statue was a gift of the people of France to the people of the United States. It was dedicated on October 28, 1886, and it has become an iconic symbol of freedom and of the United States.


Nothing much happened with Lady Liberty for the next hundred years.  Sure she was there welcoming people like Balki Bartokomous escaping vicious socialist societies, but what else really made her noteworthy?


1987
In 1987 Cobra, a ruthless evil terror organization determined to rule the world, launched an attack on the Statue of Liberty.  While Liberty Island has no strategic advantages to taking over New York, Cobra attempted it anyways.  They were however surprised by GiJoe, a highly trained special mission force.  Cobra was stopped as per usual and GiJoe saved the day as well as Our Lady Liberty.


1988
Due to damage from the Cobra attack the year prior,  the Statue was in a state of repair.  With the symbol of liberty looking like crap, the city of New York felt the same.  Beneath the streets,  rivers of slime began to rise and it fueled a ghost that lived in a painting to kidnap a baby.  When a situation like this arises, who you gonna call?  That's right the Ghostbusters.  They figured the only way to stop the ghost living in the painting was to take the slime and cover the Statue of Liberty.  The slime along with the song  "Higher and Higher" brought the Statue to life and it walked through downtown and saved the baby and the day.


1998
For the next 10 years the Statue lived in relative peace.  Aside from the occasional bird poopage nothing major happened. That is until New York was flooded when  a comet discovered by a Hobbit crashed into the Atlantic Ocean.  The Statue was engulfed in a giant wall of water that decapitated our fair lady and sent her head rolling through the flooded streets.


But eventually... 


The waters..... receded..


2000
In 2000 Erik Lensherr A.K.A. Magneto was tired of homosapiens and wanted to rule over them.  So he invented a device that would turn people into sea monkeys.  Magneto and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants used Liberty Island as a staging area to turn New York into sea monkeys.  They were stopped by the X Men and everyone was saved.


2008
Eight years after the Mutant attack and ten years after the comet caused decapitation, a monster known only as Cloverfield screamed and cut the Statue's head off once again.


The Statue of Liberty's head is currently being held on with Duct Tape.  Mythbusters' Adam and Jaime have both proved that it is plausible the tape will hold her head on for the rest of eternity.  Even if we throw ourselves in a nuclear war and the earth is ruled by a bunch of damned dirty apes.


I for one will probably not visit the Statue of Liberty after all the stuff I learned about it. 


Sorry Mom.  It's just too dangerous.





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Beware of the Poop Monster

A month ago I decided I was going to write a book.  While it wasn't a book I've always dreamed about writing, I feel it is necessary given my current situation.

The book is called "Beware of the Poop Monster".  I wanted to call it  "Beware of the Crap Monster", but my wife vetoed that name because "poop" is more appropriate than "crap".

The book is about potty training.

Sure there are books that show potty training with positive reinforcement, but my idea for the book is a scare tactic to make the kid feel guilt and fear if they continue to poop their pants.

Points in the book will touch on some of the following:

  • How the friends will stop playing with the child if he keeps dropping a deuce in his shorts.
  • How parents will blame the kid who continuously craps their diaper for the foreclosure of their home because of the growing expense of diapers.
  • Because of the foreclosure, it sends Daddy into a depression and mid life crises and may eventually turn him into a deadbeat dad who leaves his family.
  • Eventually all the poop will build up and form the Poop Monster.  The Poop Monster will then torment the child and even amputate his butt if the number twos don't quit.
Sure some would think this is a negative, but sometimes a scared straight approach like this has worked quite well to change disobedient behavior (even though the kids were teenagers and in prison).

The reason for this book is because of  Disco.  He's closing in on three years old and he refuses to go potty anywhere but his diaper.

Okay I take that back.  When I sit him on the toilet prior to a bath he will not go.  But within seconds of standing in the tub he starts to fill it a little higher.  I have a cup on standby every time I put him in.

We've even tried bribery and it doesn't work.  So all I have left is fear mongering and instilling guilt in the little boy.

Celi, his little sister is already showing signs of a desire to start potty training.  Before baths she tells me "Potty" so I undress her and place her on the toilet and I kneel next to her.  She has yet to finish the task, but gets joy by sticking her foot in my face in an attempt for me to smell her feet while sitting on the potty.

Small steps.

But Disco doesn't even humor me.  This is why I'm writing the book.  I might have Ladybug illustrate. It could be the point of view of a big sister "helping" her little brother overcome his lack of desire to poop in the potty.  It's still in discussion.

What are your potty training experiences?  

I'll keep you updated on the process of the book.  Have a great day my friends.



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Escape From San Antonio


With my survival of Hell Week and my wife safely home from her week of spa treatments, manis and pedis, chocolate covered strawberries being fed to her by the cast of 300 in Tim McGraw hats.  It is now my turn to go away for a while.

In about three weeks, I'm taking off to New York for six days for the first time ever.

That's right, I said SIX DAYS.

But Eric, you gave us all this complaining and moaning and petitions and stuff that your wife was leaving for FOUR DAYS.  Now you're taking off for SIX?? To another state?!?

Yep.  It is the motivation that got me through last week.

Now this wasn't a decision I came up with while she was gone and said, hey I'm going to pull a Jon Gosselin and leave my wife at home with my five kids while I party with Ed Hardy in New York.  It actually came about very serious like.

My mother moved to New York to work as aspiring actress in 2005.  Sure one would think that following a dream later in life rather than earlier would be a weird decision.  But she had three kids, what was she going to do?

Well the acting didn't work out so good, but she has a cush job that requires her assistance in the Big Apple.

My two brothers [from my mother,  I actually have four brothers and two sisters.  Two brothers are from my mother and two brothers and two sisters are from my step mother.  Fifty percent of my brothers are from my dad via my mother while 100% of the siblings from my step mom are from my dad. Confused? Great!  None from my siblings via my step mother have ever been to New York either] have been able to go to New York on a few occasions and hang out with my mother while I have yet to go.

I got five kids, what am I supposed to do put them in baby cages in the cargo hold then push strollers through the streets of Manhattan?

So I witnessed a conversation on Facebook between my mother, future sister in law and brother about planning a trip in August.  I got kind of pissed because I wasn't included.  I joked around in the thread when I was able to make it and it was THE THREAD KILLER.  I assumed the future conversations about New York took place in Direct Messages.

Talking with KC, I voiced my frustration and not understanding why I'm never invited.  She told me to make plans to go when they are going. We'll find a way to pay for it meaning I will have to work my butt off in overtime  and I waved her off as crazy and possibly a bit inebriated.

"I'm not going to leave you with the kids while I'm off in New York acting like a douchebag with my brothers while they call everyone gay and jackasses."

She said it was fine.

I took my concern to my mother and she responded quite positively claiming they just figured I wouldn't be able to afford the trip or just the time to get away.  My brothers do not have any kids and aren't married [yet or any longer] so they have that luxury of saying let's take off here and now.  Whereas KC and myself do not.  I asked her if anything comes up in the future to just ask us if we could make it and let us make the call if we can or not.

She booked my flight and I'm looking forward to going.  We'll be staying at her apartment so there's no concern about paying for a hotel.  She lives mere blocks away from all the major sites which means I can walk to Bryant Park to see Fashion Week.

We'll just raid her fridge when we're hungry so food won't be a problem.

I'm probably SAVING us money by going to New York.

I should make it a frequent event.

I'm really looking forward to it and I'll be posting more New York related stuff in the future.

Have any of you been to New York?  Did you enjoy it?  Let me hear your stories.

Have a great day my friends.

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I survived.

Well Hell Week is over.

It honestly wasn't bad at all.  The kids were well behaved and I didn't have to put them in the baby cages I bought.  I had planned on posting a new blog every day last week expressing my continued protests in my decision to leave town, but I felt it was better served just hanging with the kids.

The nights weren't the greatest though.  Thursday night all three girls were up at different times through out the night.  Needless to say I wasn't very happy the next morning.

Nothing a Monster Energy Drink couldn't fix.

I had actually planned on having different activities with the children during the week, but we just hung out at home and had fun.  It was better for me because I always seem to be disappointed when things do not go exactly the way I planned.

We did make it to Incredible Pizza and Disco was in his first Go Kart race.  We got second place.  I blame the battery because with my pedal to the metal the first place car kept getting further and further ahead.  When I rode with Ladybug, we got lapped twice.  It was just bad timing we got another bad car.

Either that or I am getting a lot fatter than I thought.

So when Mommy got home and everyone saw her for the first time, they were all very excited.  I was excited as well.  Yes I missed my wife, but also because this past week was a major deposit I made into the Marriage Bank Account.

Because in about 4 weeks, I'm flying to New York City for six days.

Alone.

By myself.

With no wife.

Nor any kids.

I'll be making a withdraw.

I'll keep you posted about the trip.

Have a great week my friends and welcome home Sweetie.  We missed you dearly.

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Open Letter To My Wife: Part 2

Previously on Juggling Eric.  The prophesies were happening sooner than expected and I tried to convince my wife that leaving the children with me would be a bad idea.


Dear KC,

Sweetie, I'm not sure if you got my previous open letter to you.  Sure it would have been more efficient if I possibly put a note on your pillow rather than posting it on a blog on the Internets that few people read.

But regardless if you've read it or not, your decision to still leave town for four days has not changed.

Was it the $20 Bill??

Whatever it was, you didn't waver.  Now I have to get medieval. Below is a petition I started in an attempt to gather community awareness and togetherness on the issue.



The reason there's not a lot of names is because I was busy yesterday afternoon trying to find an actual petition.  I only had time to sign it and scan it.  Don't think the community is not behind me in my endeavour.

With Love,
Bolton

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Open Letter To My Wife

To understand what this is about, you might want to review a previous post.


Dear KC,

In a couple days you will be leaving town for four days.  By doing so you will be leaving me in charge of all the children in your absence.  I'm not sure if you were drinking when you thought that decision was a good one, but I will stand by it regardless of the level of your inebriation.

I'm not trying to be negative, but your kids are different creatures when you are not here.

Honestly, they are.  Have you seen Twilight?  They're just like that.

Except without the whole emo, teen vampire, and shirtless werewolf thing.

One time I witnessed Disco break a crayon with his bare hands.  Celi wouldn't stop drinking Whole Milk and all Ladybug would do was sleep thru the night.  I know it doesn't seem like a lot right now, but I can't think of examples at this time on account of the pending doom that is surely to befall me on Wednesday.

Have you thought about reconsidering?

I have a heart condition you know that right?

Okay it's more like heart burn, but you wouldn't want to chance it would you?

And why would you cancel cable two weeks before you go?  Is this some elaborate scam to cash in my life insurance policy?

Whatever it is, I hope you can live with yourself.

I know our friend Jennifer posted a picture of what her man did for her....


That was pretty nice of him, so I thought I would offer you a like incentive to get you to stay...




If you're wondering why it's only ONE twenty dollar bill, it's because we only have a one story.  

Not because I'm cheap.

Anyways, this and some change could all be YOURS, if you stay.

Love, 
Bolton

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My Happy Place


This week I received a call from the State of Texas Union Members Liaison.  He said he was looking for a Realtor he could work with when he has union members who move to San Antonio.  When I got the message I sent a text to my wife who called me sixteen seconds later and excitedly asked...

"How much will it take to get you back in Real Estate??"

I haven't practiced Real Estate since my son was born.  That was almost THREE YEARS ago and I still get a call or two every month asking about a house or helping them relocate.  These aren't people that I know or who were referred to me, these are people who search some form of "San Antonio Real Estate or Relocation" and my name pops up.  Apparently I did some pretty dang good SEO when I was practicing to reciprocate clients three years later.

Well we crunched the numbers and it will cost about 700 bucks for me to get back into Real Estate.

It's seven-hundred dollars that we don't have or I would rather put to MaddSkillz trip to New York next year.

So I gave the information to my old broker like I have been doing the past three years.

*************************************

Since I left school I would play around with designing websites.  I would open up the source code and teach myself what html tags did what.  I eventually became pretty good.

In 2008 I was tapped to design a website for a San Antonio Mayoral Candidate.  From there I got a few more referrals and made a few bucks.

I decided that I needed to be legit, so last January I went back to school after a 12 year absence.  I felt it was time to go back because I knew it was something I wanted to do.

I had fun with it but I had to leave.

***************************************

I am currently a claims analyst at the insurance company I've been with for almost nine years.  I left once five years in to pursue real estate full time.  Getting my wife pregnant with my son forced me to get a job with insurance so I went back six months later.  Over the past four years I have come to the conclusion that I am no longer happy with my stale work position.  I feel that my wheels are spinning and I become more cynical and more detached with each passing week.

My A.D.D. can kick in and that's it, I'm gone.

I thought working from home full time would change my feelings.  But I realized it's the same repetition only with screaming kids in the next room.

I am blessed to have a job that provides insurance and my wife the ability to stay at home with our kids.  But it's no longer enough for me.

I feel that I am being cut off at the knees what I am capable of doing with myself creatively.

I need to find my Happy Place.

Now before anyone gets upset or starts on me about my family should be my "happy place" know that they are.  I can be creative with them.  They are my muses and inspiration for everything outside work.  They have nothing to do with this adjacent Happy Place of mine.

I'm not sure what I should do.

Real Estate or go back to school to be a legit graphic designer?  Real Estate has all those stinkin' board and membership dues.  It was the reason why I left in the first place.  I could probably get Barack to pay for my college, but then that'll be at least two more years or wheel spinning before I finish.

I know it's going to take a lot of prayer, discussion and talking it over about what I should do.

I really hate this funk.

What do my three readers think?  If you're still with me that is after the craptastic posts I've been spitting out the past few weeks.

After you give me advice, head on over to Dad-Blogs and check out Fatherhood Friday where their happy places don't mimic Happy Gilmore's.

Have a great weekend my friends.

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The Verdict

So on Friday I went to Blogger's Court with my wife again.  This time I wanted her to take the day off away from the house today.  Today is a company holiday (at least I hope it is, I sure as heck did not plan on going in) and with me home, it's just another person she needs to take care of.  She protested saying she doesn't have anything to do.  I told her to be creative and just get out.

Well last night she did get out.  I got her a room at a nearby hotel to just chill tonight so she can sleep uninterrupted until tomorrow.  There will be no middle of the night feedings and no morning requests for breakfast.  From there she can go do what she wants, get a coffee, see a movie, whatever.

I got the kids and the kids got me.

Let's see whose still standing when she gets home this evening.

Wish me luck.

Have a great week my friends.

Be sure to check out my Growing Tree Toys gift card Give Away!  It ends on Friday! 

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Return to the Blogger's Court



What you are about to witness is real. The participants are not actors. They are actual litigants with a case pending between each other. Both parties have not agreed to drop their claims and have their cases settled here before Juggling Eric's Three Jurors, in our forum: The Blogger's Court.

The Plaintiff: KC. She claims that since she is a mom she does not get any days off.  Unlike her husband who has Monday, July 5th off from work.

The Defendant: Eric. He understands the plight of the stay at home mom, but he has told her to take a day away from the house on a few occassions.  Every time he gets the same answer.



Defendant: I know it's customary for the plaintiff to state their case here, but I feel that my opening will make the decision much easier for the jury.

Plaintiff:  Seriously.


Defendant:  I would like her remarks stricken from the record and threatened with contempt.

Plaintiff:  .............


Defendant:  Moving on.  The other day my precious, gorgeous, caring, super, amazing wife and mother to my children, KC asked if I was off on July 5th.  I replied yes I was and then playfully asked if she was off work.

Plaintiff:  To which I replied, "I never have a day off."


Defendant:   So I told her that if she wants the day off on Monday to take it.  Get out of the house, go pop some firecrackers.  I don't give a dang.  Just go.  But then I knew what her answer was going to be..

Plaintiff:   What am I supposed to do??


Defendant:  I don't care, you're out of the house away from screaming kids that want to be fed and an amazingly handsome, charismatic, very generous husband that will gracisously sacrifice his needs for yours.  Go do something!!

Plaintiff:   But we have no money.  Where would I go?? The library and read a book?  I don't feel like reading.


Defendant:  You said that last time too.  Just take the day and go. 

Plaintiff:   If I had a day off, I would want to go get a massage and pedicure so unless someone wants to give it away for free.


Defendant:  Why do you have to spend money?!?!  If you tell me that I'm allowed out of the house for six uninterrupted hours, I will not spend a dime!!!

Plaintiff:  What would you do?  Go to the comic book store??


Defendant:  Sure, then the mall.  Maybe Home Depot, Bass Pro Shop.  You can go to the mall...


Plaintiff:  And not spend any money??


Defendant:    You don't have to spend money.  Just go look around and see what you could buy if your husband had a better job..


Plaintiff:  That's crazy.  It's different for women..


Defendant:  You're crazy and I rest my case!!!

So what does the jury think?  Does she need to have a wad of cash in order to escape the gravitational pull of Planet Bolton??  You wouldn't have to tell me twice, I wouldn't even answer you.  I would have my shoes and out the door before you were finished with the offer.  It's obvious my wife deserves some time away for herself.  Sure she's leaving for four days in a couple weeks, but she's not going to have much time to relax during that time.  Tell her she needs to take the time away.  Seriously, go to my Facebook page and find my wife and BLOW UP HER WALL telling her to GTFO!






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Phoning It in + a GIVEAWAY

I've been in sort of a blogger funk the past six weeks.  Since about mid May, I've grown a little burnt out with blogging.  I haven't felt as creative or funny to come up with unique or contributing posts. If you even think my crap is creative or funny.   I blame my kids and family since they are the inspiratation of my blog.  So, I've been pretty much phoning it in the past month.  A good deal of my posts last month were ones that I wrote and scheduled while I was running Syndication posts and I've gotten cold when it comes to posting on a regular basis. 
I've also stopped reading other blogs for about the past few weeks.  So if you're used to seeing my non contributing trolling comments on your blog maybe you're happy about it that's where I've been.   I haven't left you yet.  Sucks to be you.   

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Monday's guest post over at Clark Kent's Lunchbox has gotten some pretty good feed back (I wrote that one back in May as well).  I was kind of let down because I didn't get a slew of comments saying, "great post" or "nicely done, Eric".  I didn't even get hate comments telling me "you don't know what you're talking about idiot."  But Ron reassured me that it was better to have five insightful comments versus thirty "great post" comments.  

Ron also informed me that BlogHer picked up that post for their syndication feed.  I thought that was pretty neat.  I tried finding it on the BlogHer website and had little luck.  So I searched Ron's name and got the following reply.

I guess we know how BlogHer feels about him.  Thanks again Ron for the opportunity to guest.

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Even though I feel I have been slacking on my blogging duties, Growing Tree Toys has chosen me as Blogger of the Week.  Apparently I'm the first Dad Blogger to get this honor.  Go check out them out and learn a little about me you might already know.

As a form of cross promotion, Growing Tree Toys has sponsored a $25.00 giveaway to their website of educational toys.  Growing Tree Toys has quite the selection of diverse toys for all age groups.  Knowing how some online business have higher priced items, Growing Tree Toys are very reasonably priced.  Their prices are comparable to those you might find at discount stores such as Wal-Mart or Target.  You could easily buy 2 or maybe 3 items for $25.00.  

You can check out their website and you can also check them out at:

Growing Tree Toys is giving one lucky Juggling Eric reader a $25.00 gift card to use on their website.  Unlike in the past, this sponsor has nothing against Canada and this giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents.

How to Enter The Growing Tree Toys $25.00 Gift Card Giveaway

 Visit Growing Tree Toys and leave a comment below about what you would purchase with the $25.00 gift card.

While not required, if you tweet about this contest and come back here to leave a comment, I'll give you an extra entry every day you do it.

That's it.  

This contest will run until next Friday, July 9th.  Winner will be chosen randomly from the number of entries by random.org.  Winner will be notified via email and have 48 hours to reply.

Thanks to everyone who keeps coming back to read my dribble.  Hopefully I can get back into the swing of things soon.  

Have a great day my friends.


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