Friday, January 11, 2019

7 Quick Takes about Wearing Pants, the Iron Triangle but for Church, and Alternatives to Bookshelves

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


Please tell me that some of you still have Christmas stuff up.

Our tree is still fully decorated in our living room. Part of the reason is that this year, we must have gotten a genetically modified mutant tree because it sheds virtually no needles (I think I've swept under the tree three times since we got it Thanksgiving weekend.)

Do you think your family is the most chaotic, noisy family there is? Then you probably need to read this. Your weekly dose of real life and laughs in this Friday's 7 Quick Takes! #7quicktakes #7qt #friday #real #momlife #relatable #lifewithkids #unremarkablefiles
I don't even think we've watered it since mid-December.

Most years I'm so sick of cleaning up fallen needles I'm ready to kick it out the back door first thing in the morning on December 26th. But really, this no-mess tree can stay as long as it likes. I'm in no hurry.


In researching something that ultimately didn't end up in my post TED Talks My Preschooler Could Give, I discovered that there was quite a hubbub on the Internet a few years ago about Daniel Tiger and his lack of pants.

Seriously. Entire articles, open letters, a hashtag, and a petition are out there on the subject of #pantsgate.

Before this week I never noticed that Daniel and his dad wear no pants, but after reading about it... I can't unsee it.

Of course, it doesn't bother me on Daniel because he's a little kid and little kids never wear pants. But I'm unnerved by his dad, and not just because he's a fully-grown man wearing nothing but a sweater, some sneakers, and a smile.

It's also because his dad is standing right next to his fully-clothed mom, so we know there's a J.C. Penney somewhere on Jungle Beach where he could just buy himself a pair of Dockers if he really wanted to!

Someone please explain.


Our ward (congregation) shares the church building with another ward. Every year, we swap who meets in the morning and who meets in the afternoon.

We had afternoon church in 2018 and I have to say I liked it. No getting up and rushing in the morning, and although it interfered with naptime we made it work.

This year we meet at 9 AM and even though it's nice to be home by lunch, it's going to be a struggle to get there on time with 6 kids. Especially since Phillip is in the bishopric and is gone for early morning meetings so it's all up to me.

You know that triangle they show you in economics class with points labeled 'good,' 'fast,' 'cheap' and you can only pick two? This is the 9 AM church version of that:

Do you think your family is the most chaotic, noisy family there is? Then you probably need to read this. Your weekly dose of real life and laughs in this Friday's 7 Quick Takes! #7quicktakes #7qt #friday #real #momlife #relatable #lifewithkids #unremarkablefiles
I made this myself. Feel free to copy for your personal reference.


The other reason Sundays are going to be a little different this year is two-hour church.

It used to be that in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, our church service was followed by two hours of Sunday School classes for both children and adults. But our prophet is shaking things up, and we're now only meeting for one hour of Sunday School afterward.

The purpose, he says, is for gospel learning to become a more home-centered and church-supported endeavor, not the other way around.

We've always been asked to set Sunday apart as a special day to spend time with our families and learn about the gospel of Jesus Christ without the distractions of the other 6 days. Now we just have some extra time to do that, which really does make a difference!

(Also, I work in the nursery with the 18-month-olds and let me tell you, they're bouncing off the walls after three hours. This year is going to be a piece of cake.)


Phillip hurt his ankle playing basketball this fall, and then injured it again a month later. I'd prefer that he just cut his losses and find a new hobby that isn't trying to permanently cripple him, but the best I could do was get him to promise not to play again until the new year.

Once January rolled around, there were some intense negotiations before he went back to playing basketball.

Ultimately we decided that since he took 6 weeks off after the first injury and 3 months off after the second, he'll take 6 months off if he gets hurt again. And every injury thereafter, he'll double his rest time. If he keeps getting hurt, then he eventually just won't play basketball anymore by default.

I suppose that was a pretty good compromise, although that night I did dream he got carried away by a huge kite and I was freaking out thinking he was going to fall to his death. So yeah, I guess you could say I'm still slightly worried.


I've always been of the school of thought that kids are smart enough not to starve, and my job as a parent is not to become a food-pusher but to provide nutritious things to eat at meals and snacks, and how much they eat is up to them.

I know moms who make a dozen separate meals for everyone and fight with their skinny toddlers to get them to eat cookies. Cookies. I do not want to go down that road.

My philosophy has always served me well in the past, but now I have a kid who's apparently falling off their height and weight curve and the pediatrician suggests "encouraging them to eat more." Whatever that means.

Thoughts, anyone? What should I do?


The bookshelf in our dining room was one sneeze away from collapsing entirely, so we ordered a new one. It'll be more aesthetically pleasing and much less likely to kill someone if they happen to walk by at the wrong moment.

When it arrived we took apart the old one and set the boards aside for a fun mid-winter bonfire, and only then did we open the new bookshelf to discover a damaged board.

So for almost a week now as we're waiting to hear back from customer service, we've had no bookshelf and our dining room has looked like this:

Do you think your family is the most chaotic, noisy family there is? Then you probably need to read this. Your weekly dose of real life and laughs in this Friday's 7 Quick Takes! #7quicktakes #7qt #friday #real #momlife #relatable #lifewithkids #unremarkablefiles

To be honest, this is only marginally worse than it usually looks. The kids are avid readers and always preferred precariously perching their books horizontally on the edge of the shelf instead of vertically like they're supposed to be, and every now and then they'd go spilling onto the floor.

At least they're stacked neatly this time.

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Anonymous said...

I look forward to your post every week!

One of my daughters was on the low end of weight/height (2%). She was always a "good" eater, but never preferred sweets (the other two kids made up for her though!).

Anyway, I did my best to encourage her to eat more, but like you said, they eat when they are hungry. I started making some of her favorite meals more often because she typically always ate seconds of those meals.

Two years later she's still small, but is growing and healthy (she's up to 8%!). I think these things just work themselves out!

AnneMarie said...

Ok, that is just WEIRD that Mrs. Tiger wears pants but that Mr. Tiger doesn't. Though honestly, animated animals wearing clothes vs. not wearing clothes is just a weird area to begin with.

Your tree looks so beautiful! No judgment from me-Catholics are still in the season of Christmas (the final day is this Sunday, when we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord) so we still have our tree up :) And while we'll take our tree down on Monday, we leave our Nativity set up until February 2 (when we celebrate the presentation of Jesus in the Temple). And I'm thinking, if your tree keeps looking this good, you could just add different seasonal things to it for Valentine's Day, Super Bowl Sunday, etc. ;) I hope you enjoy the changes in your Sunday routine! That's awesome that you won't be wrangling the kids in nursery for several hours-I'm sure it will be much easier. I think it's interesting you like your normal afternoon time slot-maybe it's because I'm used to it, but I LOVE going to Mass early in the morning on Sunday instead of later (whenever we visit my parents, who go at 11:30 a.m., we always opt to not attend Mass with them since we like going at 8:30 or even 7).

Diana Dye said...

Ugh feeding kids. I don't remember my mom ever telling me to sit still, focus and eat but it's all I do at dinner for my skinny kids (dad's genes). But then again, I'm 7th of 8 kids so if I didn't eat quickly, I didn't get any. I'm still a fast eater, now that I think about it....

Rachel said...

#5...Angel loves basketball and usually plays once a week, but I definitely tell him that safety is priority #1, he's got a family to take care of and sports is not worth expensive injuries. Now that he's a nurse at a school he's on duty during a lot of games and even more aware of sports injuries, so I think he's pretty careful, but guys need to remember that recovery starts coming a lot slower in your 30s and up. I like the system you guys have come up with!
#6 I also tend to be of the idea that kids won't starve themselves, though there does seem to be the occasional one that might give it a pretty good go. Doctors can be a little too concerned with "charts" though, in my opinion. You're mom, I figure you'll know best if your kid is getting enough to eat! We have one five year old we take care of sometimes who appears to survive on a cracker a day...I'm still hoping that at some point he'll snap out of that. But maybe there are also adults who only eat crackers? A lot of times it seems just when we want to give up, that they'll never change...suddenly, kids change.

Audrey said...

I just took down Christmas this weekend so I think you're doing alright.
That Daniel the Tiger things is SUPER weird. If no one wore pants it'd be fine but if his mother finds it's necessary to cover her lower tiger parts then why doesn't his dad...?
I don't have kids but I love your triangle chart.
My bff has torn her ACL TWICE playing volleyball. She says she's given it up for good but she still goes to intramural games to watch her friends and I highly suspect she'll be on the court again some day. SIGH.

Katie said...

You know what bothers me more than the lack of pants on Daniel Tiger? The fact that they have tiger stripped curtains in their home. I mean, is that great Aunt Hilda up there?!

Jenny Evans said...

After #pantsgate, the tiger-skin drapes in the living room were the biggest concern among people on the Internet who had questions about Daniel Tiger. Maybe it is, as you suggest, like keeping the ashes of a loved one on your mantel.

Jenny Evans said...

Kids in big families need to do that to survive. Even my 2-year-old, if he sees someone getting seconds, will yell "Don't take all of it!" (He doesn't even know what that means, he's just heard his siblings saying it.)

Jenny Evans said...

I don't really care what animated animals wear, as long as it's consistent. Either they all should wear pants or all wear no pants.

Jenny Evans said...

That's kind of how I've been feeling. Thanks for the voice of calm reason!