You are Viewing "Kids Are Wacky – Curious Stuff My Daughter Does and Thinks"

Nov 14 2010

Flame On! – My Daughter Discovers That Everything Looks Cooler With Hot Rod Flames

Summary: My daughter wanted to know how to draw flames. I showed her some techniques and now she puts them on everything.

Flaming mandala

On Mandala Mondays all the kids start the day with a photocopy of that week's mandala design that they are free to decorate any way they want. It's a fun little art project - but they look so much better with some flames on them. Oh yeah!!!

Since I work at home, and I’m a professional illustrator, my daughter picks up little techniques just from observing my works in progress. However, sometimes we draw together in the evenings where I teach her how to draw specific things that have been eluding her. In the past we’ve worked on scales, muscles, wings, trees, shading, and perspective. But it’s probably the “how to draw flames” lesson that has been the most interesting.

Now, drawing good flames is really hard. Natural flames take years to perfect and good stylized hot rod flames even longer.

At first I just drew some flames that were a blend of both natural and stylized flames and then explained the theory behind the shapes. She then tried to copy it. Now unlike scales, which she mastered on her first try, her flames looked nothing like flames. They were closer to deformed earthworms than anything else.

Sensing her frustration I made a template from a piece of tag board that she could trace with. This is a good way to learn to draw a difficult shape as it starts training your muscle memory right away.

This helped a lot and then she gave it a go on her own. They weren’t perfect, but she was happy with the results, which is all that matters. If they meet or exceed her minimal standard for flames, then it’s all good and she can have fun with it.

And have fun she did.

She started putting flames on everything.

Flaming dog

On fire that is!

Dinosaurs and volcanoes were the first to get the flame treatment but after that she started applying them to objects, animals, people, the ground, trees – basically anything that could theoretically be set on fire, got set on fire.

My favorite was the dog as it was so unexpected.

And if you don’t think that’s the coolest then you’re reading the wrong blog.

File Under: Teaching Your Kid to Draw – Simple Drawing Lessons for Children

Nov 12 2010

I Will Kik Yore Ass Dad!!!! – My Daughter Learns to Write

Summary: Hey, at least she’s excited about writing.

I will Kick your ass dad!!! Funny note from daughter.

I thought this was pretty darn funny.

My daughter’s making invitations to a small Halloween party we’re having at our house. It’s so small there is only one other person invited. Originally the annual get together was going to be at her friend’s house but in a moment of frustration, her mom cancelled the party due to her friend’s misbehavior.

We contacted the dad and suggested we have it at our house. That way they can technically stick to their punishment, but not punish our daughter in the process.

This is always a conundrum when punishments affect innocent bystanders like friends and family.

So I get her some construction paper, some pens, and write out what she wants to say so she can copy it. She starts working on the invitation while I go back to my computer and work. A little while later she announces it’s done and she’s going to make one more. I find this a bit odd because there is only one invited guest.

Ten minutes later she comes into my office and hands me a note. It says “I will kik yore ass!!!! dad.” Continue reading

Jun 14 2010

I Put Soap in the Toothpaste! – Dealing With a Child’s Bizarre Behavior

Summary: Sometimes your child’s behavior is so bizarre you simply don’t know what to do.

I’m taking care of the aquarium when my daughter comes out of the bathroom after brushing her teeth.

“I think it’s your turn to brush your teeth.”

“I will later.”

“I really think you should brush your teeth right now.”

“Oh no. What did you do?”

I walk into the bathroom and start looking around. It looks normal so I reach for the toothpaste. Just then my partner yells out from the living room.

“Don’t use the toothpaste! She put soap on it!”

“What, are you serious?” Continue reading

Dec 2 2009

The Girl’s Gotta Chew – Dealing With a Super Oral Kid

Summary: She chewed her dolls, the furniture and anything she could get her hands on. You can’t stop her from chewing but you can stop her from chewing the good stuff.

My daughter at 18 months. Number one rule in the house. It can't fit in her mouth.

My daughter at 18 months. Number one rule in the house. It can't fit in her mouth.

How many water-filled toys have we tossed? All of them. Usually within a day or two of buying them. Balloons were popped by mouth long before they deflated naturally. Rocks were tossed back like they were pills. Anything that could be popped, punctured, gouged or crushed was soon destroyed by my daughter. While she was teething she chewed grooves into the bottom shelf of our entertainment center. Long after all her peers were playing with marbles, fake jewelery, and little toys, our daughter still had to be restricted to anything that couldn’t completely fit in her mouth. She was a 24/7 walking choking hazard. Continue reading

Dec 1 2009

Homemade Teething Rings

Summary: Unsatisfied with the teething rings on the market, I made my own with surgical tubing and exercise bands.

WARNING: Be very careful when making your own teethers and always supervise your baby when using a homemade teether. If they can fit something in their mouth, it’s too small. If they can break it apart it needs to be redesigned. Basically, don’t be stupid and negligent.

My daughter kicking it in the grass with her home made teething rings. The one on the right is smooth and the left one is ribbed (for her pleasure).

My daughter kicking it in the grass with her home made teething rings. The one on the right is smooth and the left one is ribbed (for her pleasure).

As I discussed in a previous post my daughter has an intense need to chew.  She’s six years old now, and though more selective on how she expresses her oral inclinations, she’s still a put-things-in-your-mouth type kid. But hey, both of her parents are very oral so it’s no surprise that she came out that way as well.

Like most parents we tried about every teether on the market. She use them all to varying degrees but was not totally satisfied with any of them. She didn’t care for the knobby plastic ones that you freeze. Many of the other rings and chains were just too hard for any extended use. Continue reading

Dec 1 2009

My Daughter Loves The Dead – When Your Child is Fascinated with the Macabre

Summary: My daughter loves blood, dead animals, scary movies and making homemade haunted houses. It’s in her blood, so to speak. So why not go with it?

Winnie the Pooh, with bug eye glasses shooting blood on his meal of skeleton parts, pieces of zombie, spiders and eyeballs. Yummy!

Winnie the Pooh, with bug eye glasses crying blood onto his meal of skeleton parts, pieces of zombie, spiders and eyeballs. Yummy!

It’s no secret that raising my daughter has not been easy. Early on there were some tough challenges around potty training, social anxieties and violent tantrums. But some parts of her are so unbelievably cool, that it kind of makes up for the rest. One of those things is her love of the dead.

No, not the band, I mean dead things.

Human corpses, bloody body parts, dead fish in the supermarket or floating in an aquarium, roadkill, that type of thing. And of course, haunted houses and Halloween. Which, at our house, is pretty much everyday. Continue reading

Nov 24 2009

An Apple, a Scrotum and a Bit of Baby Sign Language

Summary: Using baby sign is pretty awesome and can give you insight into what your pre-language child is thinking.

Baby sign for "what the fuck, dad"

Baby sign for "what the fuck, dad"

My daughter was never one much for baths. Even as an infant she preferred a shower. However, that is not what this story is about, which is baby sign.

Back in 2003, after our daughter was born, we decided to use baby sign as a communication bridge until she could talk. You can start anytime from birth, but you really won’t see any results until they are developmentally ready. So for a while it just seems like your spinning your wheels. The bummer is, you kind of have to go through that phase were you sign endlessly and nothing happens for your child to actually be able to implement it when she’s ready. Continue reading