The company gave us time off between Christmas and New Year’s, plus a little on each end, to spend with our loved ones. I went into the week or so with every intention to spend every waking moment teaching Elijah and Luca how to throw a spiral, reading them the great works, making them luxurious and healthful meals, and holding them close to my heart.
On the morning of January 2nd, I realized I had not only done none of those things, I had actively avoided my sons to play video games and eat fourteen gallons of Chex Mix.
Like a tenth grader hoping to learn a semester’s worth of Geometry the night before the final, I jumped into action.
I knew I could at least buy their love, so I drove them to Target to buy a toy of their choice. I stamped down the reminder that they had just received a million presents on Christmas. But these toys would be different. They were random toys.
They boys hemmed and hawed and couldn’t make up their minds on what to get. Because of the million toys littering their floors, but they managed to squeeze out a few purchases.
We drove home, but not before visiting McDonalds! That’s right, I stamped down that little nagging though that they had, in fact, not eaten a vegetable in double digit days. Two cheeseburgers? Sure! A large orange drink? Sure! Why not get a shake while you are at it!
At home, I followed them around suggesting things we could do as a family. Why don’t we put together some Legos! Ohh! Coloring. Would someone like to do a coloring book? Let’s play pretend! My delivery was of a jilted loser attempting to win back his ex girlfriend.
Despite their attempts to shake me (“Dad, don’t you want to go play Xbox”), I was on them like white on rice. And I think they had fun. Or at least they said they did when quizzed throughout the day.
For dinner, I made their favorite spaghetti and we went upstairs for baths, content in the knowledge that I was a competent father figure.
The boys began fighting in the tub and splashing water everywhere. I shouted at them and took away their screens and said they would get no “be withs” at bedtime.
Well, maybe next year.