Adventures Of Fatherhood

My kids love cash.

Who doesn’t, right?

It’s something they take for granted, of course, like all children. Nonetheless, it fascinates them and both my boys are always looking to get their pudgy fingers on my money.

Beckett gets a dollar bill thrown in his lunch box just about every day for an ice cream treat at lunch. When I don’t have the small bill, he gets a bit annoyed when I put four quarters in there. I think he feels I’m being cheap until I reiterate it’s the same amount of money and he can buy the same thing.

It occurred to me recently that for the better part of the school year we have been giving him a buck for ice cream and have not once seen any change in his lunch box or in his pants. When I asked him about it once, he applauded the question, saying, “that’s a good one, I don’t know.”

That led to an inquiry. Based off his answers to my questions, I was able to conclude he simply takes his ice cream, gives his money and then walks (or runs, more likely) away without waiting for his change because he is so excited to dig into his beloved King Cone, which just happens to be my favorite as well.

Carson also enjoys the feel of cash in his hand apparently. We were goofing around last weekend and pretending he was making ice cream cones at the playground inside a structure. I offered him a dollar in return, but didn’t think he would take it. He grabbed it, folded it adeptly and immediately stuck it down into his pocket and laughed about it for several minutes while patting his pocket the entire time.

When I tried to take the dollar back, he got upset and snatched it, returning it to his trusted pocket so he could continue to pat on it for safe keeping.

Later, when unbeknownst to him it fell out while he was going down the slide, I picked it up. A couple minutes later, he let out a huge cry, leading Pam and I to immediately think he got hurt somehow.

It turns out he was just upset about the dollar bill not being in his pocket. There he was balling his eyes out with both his pant pockets pulled out and shrugging with his hands facing up.

When I gave it back to him, he gave me a huge hug, signing an emphatic, “Thank you.”

Come to think of it, I never did get that dollar back from him, not that I was going to try again though anyway.

Although it’s still a bit into the future, I can’t wait till the day when my kids are out of car seats.

Beckett, 5, is now just in a booster seat, and I love how easy it is. He now puts his seat belt on and takes it off by himself and it makes life simpler.

On the opposite extreme, Carson, 4, is still very much in a car seat and strapping him in on a daily basis is always a wrestling match.

There are some days when he’s particularly feisty and oppositional when I have to match his aggressiveness and pin him back while fastening his belts. That sort of situation played out on a recent morning.

I don’t know what his problem was, but he wanted nothing to do with his car seat. While I was able to get him in it and fasten him in, he spent the entire ride to school trying to get out of it. He never quite accomplished it, but he was able to get his arms out of the straps by taking off his jacket and then his shirt. I have no idea how he managed that.

What I saw in the rear view mirror was interesting. He was flailing in the car seat with his shirt stuck over his head and his body almost entirely out of the seat with the exception of his bottom. Somehow he had managed to get a hold of Becket’s booster seat. He was crying and screaming because the shirt was stuck on his head.

My immediate instinct was to just turn up the radio to drown him out, but then I reminded myself it was not safe and that I could not simply ignore him.

So there I was pulled over on Assateague Road re-dressing my son, who had somehow managed to get both his shoes and socks off as well. The problem was I could not find one of his shoes. When I asked him where they were, he pointed outside, aggravating me because I thought he was mocking me.

After searching for several minutes to no avail, I gave up, figuring we were heading back home for new shoes.

When I turned around, a car vroomed by and nearly ran over his shoe. It turns out he was not mocking me at all.

When I retrieved it and put it back on, he patted me on the shoulder and again pointed outside. We laughed about that one for a while until he started again trying to get of his car seat.

First thing Wednesday morning, I mentioned to Beckett about the day ahead. He cut me off saying he knew what day it was and didn’t need the preview.

When I asked him to tell me, he nonchalantly said, “It’s hump day, and that means I have P.E. today.”

Across the room, Carson took note and started doing his impression of a camel with his shoulders dipping and diving, his tongue hanging out and his chin straight up. It looked more like a cross between a thirsty duck’s waddle and a begging dog giving a paw, but he got an ‘A’ for effort.

It was a good way to start the day.