Posts Tagged ‘ trains ’

The Post-Christmas “No More Presents” Blues

Tuesday, December 25th, 2012

2 years, 1 month.

Dear Jack,

Christmas is over. You are currently undergoing the culture shock of entering back into a world with no anticipation of an avalanche of gifts anytime soon.

That’s what happens when your birthday is so close to Christmas: You are bombarded with gifts for about a 30 day period, then suddenly… it’s back to reality.

I noticed how after you opened about 4 or 5 presents today, you started losing your ability to comprehend what the next gift even was.

Instead, you turned to me and said, “More gifts?”

And that’s what you said after every gift you opened from that point on.

I think in a few days, you’ll be able to comprehend that your Nonna and Papa (your grandparents on my side) got you the biggest Tonka firetruck I’ve ever seen- big enough to haul all your Thomas trains in.

Speaking of trains, you’ll also realize that your collection nearly doubled in a matter of a couple of days.

It’s like you just won a pie-eating contest. Sure, you won, but now you need to let everything settle and digest as properly as possible.

You need some time to settle back in to a world where instead of getting to hang out with family all day and open gifts, you are at daycare for the majority of the day with your friends and you barely get to see Mommy and Daddy.

I’m sure by the car ride to school tomorrow it will all start setting in.

It’s strange having a period of several days with virtually no stress, and then on top of that, receiving every toy you’ve been asking for.

Don’t worry, Son. I will be your guide back to the real world.

I don’t like it anymore than you do.





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Dad’s Candid Confession: I Used To Think Trains Were Sort Of Nerdy

Saturday, November 3rd, 2012

23 months.

A train museum is Disneyland for a nearly 2-year-old boy.

I’m all for Disney theme parks and I’m really looking forward to the day my son Jack will be old enough to remember and appreciate a magical experience like that.

But for now, as he nears his 2nd birthday, a trip to the California State Railroad Museum was all he needed.

From seeing giant automatic train villages, to touring 1930′s train cars, to hanging out at the elaborate Thomas the Train play station, this was one museum that my squirmy son could not get enough of.

I’m seriously having trouble understanding what it would be like to have an American toddler son in the year 2012 who is not obsessed with trains.

What theme is your son infatuated with if not for everything locomotive?

If Thomas the Train and his die cast metal friends aren’t the theme of your son’s birthday party, and if he didn’t dress up as a train or a conductor for Halloween, and if he doesn’t have to carry out toy trains everywhere he goes, including to bed, well… what is he into?

This is all I know: Trains.

If this were the year 1995, Jack would have a t-shirt with a train on the front and the writing would read, in big letters:

“Life is trains. The rest is just details.”

The truth is, before my son got into trains, my preconceived idea about little boys liking trains is that it was sort of… nerdy.

But now I have been converted to the rough and tumble world of trains.

With all the soot and metal and crashing and American history, not to mention that most of the cast of Thomas and Friends is male, I no longer think trains are a dorky theme for my son.

So this election season, please know where I stand on this issue. I strongly support my son and his enthrallment of locomotives.

My best advice for anyone making travel plans for this upcoming holiday season, see where the closest train museum is and take your toddler son there.

If he has not yet been introduced to the world of trains, then make today the day.

Can I get a woot-woot?


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Planes, Trains and Automobiles… And Pooping

Sunday, September 16th, 2012

22 months.

If you ever fly into Nashville, you will see our house as you are landing; just look out the window, down on your left side.

Anytime I am outside with my son Jack on a walk, he looks up at the sky about every 15 minutes and proclaims, “Airplane. Airplane.”

So I guess for his sake, it’s pretty cool that we happen to live along the landing path of all planes heading to the Nashville airport.

Jack is also intrigued by trains, as I suspect most nearly 2 year-olds boys are. He can’t go anywhere without a Thomas the Train character in his hand.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that for his birthday (exactly 2 months from today) Jack will be a train conductor.

And when it comes to automobiles of any kind, Jack just can’t get enough. He even distinguishes between “big cars” and “baby cars,” whatever exactly that means.

Jack recently confirmed with us that for his first car when he turns 16, he wants a pick-up truck.

So in review, what is my toddler son into these days? Planes, trains, and automobiles.

Oh yeah, and pooping, too.

Last week during bath time as Jack was sprawled out in his Superman position, he looked up at my wife and said, “Butt? Butt.”

“Do you have to use the potty, Jack?” My wife propped him up on the toilet while embracing him.

He strained. He concentrated. But nothing happened.

Even still, he reached over, grabbed some toilet paper, and pretended to use it the right way.

I soon would learn that Jack has been observing another boy at his daycare, Troy, who is being potty trained in the 2 year-old class.

Pooping is not something that Jack is ashamed of. To him, it’s like learning to eat with a fork. It’s nothing special, it’s just the next part of growing up.

So every time Jack stops what he’s doing to say “poop?” or “butt?” we’re going to take him seriously.

We’ll take him straight to the potty and he’ll get a chance to go like a big boy.

One day when we least expect it, it will happen for real.

But it won’t be any big deal to Jack. The way he sees it, poop happens.

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