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Every year my husband and I do a letterpress calendar for our friends and families. (Yay for gifts that can be tossed in the recycling bin.) I do any necessary drawing and Mr. Bunny does the printing. We always fight about it. This is mainly because I’m a control freak. I want him to take a more active role in idea generation and then when he does I don’t like his ideas which naturally offends him, and I want to get started several weeks earlier, and I want him not to bitch and moan about his tasks, and I am a nagging whore, in short. This year I sent him off to come up with something and I swore I’d just go with whatever he came up with, and then he delayed and delayed and delayed and when he finally told me his idea I was like *bites tongue bites tongue bites tongue* That’s lame. And then we went to bed in a huff. And as I was falling asleep, inspiration came out of nowhere, as it does. Each page of the calendar has a picture of a box of humorous cereal. The final page is a catalogue of items people can get by sending in the proofs of purchase from the cereal boxes. It’s extremely awesome.


This is my favorite. I think. They’re all great. According to me.

I wish that having a fight were not a part of our process, but maybe collaboration is always like that. It’s part of our parenting process as well, it seems. Perhaps because I am a control freak and a nagging whore in that arena too.

The current topic of contention is how to respond when our older child does something we don’t want her to, ranging from trying to poke her brother in the eye (not maliciously, but because she’s into pointing out things, including eyes) to flinging herself on the floor and weeping. I’m all about having strategies for dealing with categories of thing and about having reasons for WHY and blah blah blah. He’s all about saying HEY! HEY! really loudly. I’m fine with him doing whatever works for him when he’s in charge, and I don’t think he objects to me doing whatever I want when I’m in charge, but the trouble is what do we do when we’re all together and it’s not clear who’s in charge? Currently, I’m in the biting of the tongue phase. The going to bed in a huff part will come soon, I have no doubt. Then, perhaps, inspiration?

14 Comments Post a comment
  1. Fuck it, wp ate my bloddy brilliant comment! Twice!! Gah.

    The conclusion is: apply the snoozer/loser principle. Whoever gets to start the disciplining first, gets to follow up the case without being disputed by a peer (him) or a superior court of law (you) in public. If need be, there may be a debate upon it in chambers, far from the little disciplinee’s ears. The puny authority we have is the straw we must clutch on to to survive.

    Explaining reasons may be as efficient as a loud HEY, HEY. Both need to be repeated until achieving an Avatar-like shade of blue in the face until you start seeing results though.

    December 19, 2012
  2. I make photo-calendars of Monkey. This is good because I have zero drawing skills and grandparents and great grandparents love baby photos.

    Monkey likes to point out eyes as well, so I know exactly what you’re talking about there! He actually gave Hubs an ear infection a while back by sticking his pointy nailed finger in there.

    So far we don’t argue about parenting styles but I’m sure its coming. Hubs is of the ‘OI’ variety too and I’m more of an explainer. Looking forward to it… Not!

    December 19, 2012
  3. Seriously…you guys do letterpress too…WTF?!? So gifted. Here I am obsessing about what 4 photo’s I have of each boy that I will be okay with on a drug store printed “happy new year” card and that’s only because I took my Ari to get his picture with Santa and included it with the Hanukkah cards I sent to his side of the family (perhaps intentionally). And lets face it, there is nothing else more entertaining than trying to find ways of pissing off my in-laws while passing time in this hospital room. All this to say I’m jealous of all your bad ass talents. Also, biting the tongue is hard. Both Dave and I have said FUCK in front of the boys this week. Totally shitty of us. Hope he thinks we said TRUCK. Stressful situations remove our filter and our opposing parenting styles are nicely highlighted, you are not alone!!!!

    December 20, 2012
    • I was going to say, it’s hard to get your craft on when you’re in A HOSPITAL. I hope today is easy on all of you.

      December 20, 2012
  4. I feel weirdly compelled to clarify that I don’t typically tell HER about the WHY, it’s just that I have an internal logic for what I’m doing.

    December 20, 2012
  5. AbsoLUTEly awesome! See that? I was speaking American. Your calendar is a thing of beauty, I am trying to say. It’s BRILLIANT.
    Inspiration, yes: A unpredictable, maddening, thing. And then it comes and it’s magic. Also yes, we do that too. I ask him for a witty by-line and he rewrites the whole thing. Or I try to describe an idea which I think is REALLY FUNNY, and he remains stony-faced and I get demoralised.
    Ah, marriage!
    I sympathise on the differing approaches to childcare. Hmm. I wonder how that might work for us.

    December 20, 2012
  6. Bahhaa Happy Holidays indeed. Um the parenting thing?…I have no idea. Jack is almost 2 and he is responding well to the “time outs” we put him in…well I put him in. Apparently he doesn’t hit Andy in the face when he tries to put him to bed…that is just saved for mom. It is like a 30 second time out, but it appears to work…..

    December 20, 2012
  7. Magnifique! I love the calendar. And picking the month of our birthdays as the one to show was the right decision, clearly.
    Oh, that sounds like fun, all those divergent methods to parenting and the disagreements that ensue. I can’t wait! I request some specifics on the biting of the tongue, as I can foresee this technique of dealing with Mr. A and I’s disagreements being a winner. Mid-tongue? Tip of the tongue? A hard bite, or just securing the appendage? A girl needs to know.

    December 20, 2012
  8. Well shit, we’re NOT supposed to let them poke other babies/each other in the eye??? Someone send me a parenting book. Oo, and I want one of those calendars too! (What a cool idea, so creative, so talented (you), so jealous (me)!!) But really though, it’ll be interesting to see how parenting balances itself out as we find ourselves in the position of having to do more of the discipline thing. We’re still struggling to figure out what works best with toddler meltdowns and we take somewhat different approaches. While on the one hand I want to acknowledge and mirror their feelings, sometimes they are just being ridiculous and I literally cannot stop myself from saying “hey drama queen, knock it off.” Oh yes, I DO…

    December 20, 2012
    • OMG I love that. I am totally going to say it. It goes well with me saying “BACK OFF PLEASE” when she gets all clingy up in my knees.

      December 21, 2012
  9. Wow, I’m way impressed with the calendar–that looks fabulous! And your process totally reminds me of our process of creating our Christmas card. Usually Roo creates a draft with lots of her favorite pictures from the year and asks me to look it over (and then get frustrated when it takes me a while to respond and it starts to look like we’re going to have to send them out as Valentine’s Day cards instaed). Then I look at her draft and say I don’t like half of the pictures she picked and think we should rearrange them completely. And after some negotiations that make this fiscal cliff stuff seem like a cakewalk we usually end up with something we’re both really happy with. But some years it can be tough to get there.
    And the collaboration on discipline stuff can be super tough. Before having a kid, I somehow hadn’t really thought about how much collaboration it might involve. In our pre-kid lives there were all sorts of things where we could just each do our own thing in our own way and not have to come to any agreement on it. But that doesn’t work so well when trying to co-parent.
    It does sound like it would be helpful to have some general agreement between you and the Mister on how to handle certain categories of BunBun behavior. But I’m not sure how to get there if he’s not interested in making/implementing that kind of a plan.

    December 21, 2012
  10. well, i’m glad to see at least that i don’t need to blog about my marriage since apparently you are blogging about my marriage! sadly, you are not also blogging about my insanely fucking fantastic calendar-making skills as well… that triumph belong to you and you alone. gorgeous! awesome!

    December 21, 2012

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