The Armstrong Family Circus

published and designed by Wiseacre Design Studio

Maineville • Ohio • USA

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I like to stuff things down my pants

Tuesday March 28th 2006

by Paul Armstrong
I supposed I should feel guilty about publically exposing the idiosynchrocies of my children to the world - but in all honestly the world isn't reading "The Circus", nor is a small town - so for the handful of you loyal readers I like to share our world and what goes on; not sure if its wisdom or folly or entertainment, most likely all of them. That being said, there are certain things that those of you with young kids or with kids on the way or even thinking about having kids someday need to be prepared for, and I'm here to help give you the tools of preparation - so here are some universal rules of parental preparedness.
  • Rule #1. Boys love their penises. This is completely non-sexual to kids, so don't make them feel bad about it. Of course you will need to let them know that loudly declaring their love for their unit in public places is wholly unacceptable.
  • Rule #2. When its quiet, something is wrong. Terribly wrong. It can mean one of three things when you're kids are completely silent - 1] they've fallen asleep (and past the age of 4, this is highly unlikely), 2] they're actually playing very quitely with their Matchboxes, Barbies or other sane and quiet toy (Ha! even when playing with these you know that its not quiet, so its highly unlikely), 3] they've gotten ahold of the crayons, glue, stamps, stickers, gum and markers and have proceeded to find various means to redecorate their room (which you will have to undo.)
  • Rule #3. Anger happens. With kids, anger comes in buckets - usually unfurled upon the closet thing to them at the time (which oddly always seems to be either a sibling or a parent, never the soft pillows on the couch or that koosh ball that collects dust under their bed). Anger is a perfectly acceptable emotion, its the means of expressing it that becomes the mess. This is the bane of every parents exists - the delicate balance of self-expression and unbrided rage, and you have to teach your kids this too.
  • Rule #4. "You" will lose things. And by "lose" I mean your kids will take things on your desk when you're in the bathroom and hide them behind the living room sofa cushions. And when you go to find it, you will think you put it in that "special spot" where you'd never forget (but was so special that you forgot) until 2 weeks later when you sit and have the pointy end of your mechanical pencil pierce your thigh. Then you will lose your mind.
  • Rule #5. Potty talk. There is no escaping it. You can punish it till you're blue in the face, but ultimately farting is funny, and - unless you're dead inside - always will be. The rules of Rule #3 apply here. Try not to encourage it by laughing (or instigating it - a lesson I still have no learned)
  • Rule #6. Boys will stuff things down their pants. I believe this rule is directly tied to Rule #1, but boys will stick various things down their pants. Just the other night when Sonya was going to bed she checked in on Elliott. She proceeded to find a pirate headpiece/scarf, a stuffed squirrel and one slipper stuffed down his pants. Upon pulling them out Elliott woke up and laughed and immediately went back to sleep.



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