Mike Dariano


Read Next

Smart Kids (book excerpt)

I've not forgotten about my parenting book, I'm up to over 30,ooo words on the project after taking a break to participate in NaNoWriMo and the holidays. More excerpts.

My daughters are getting smart, maybe too smart. If the world is the classroom for life and I am their teacher, then I've chosen an odd curriculum. Like a futuristic robot that learns things and then conquers her masters, they are heading in an unsuspected direction.

Their adaptability, when it comes to learning things is entirely self serving. Through my slightly above parenting skills, I have taught them to explore and use loopholes, do the minimum required, and will us to the extreme limits of threats that involves removes candy from their lives. Mostly this all happens in the kitchen.

One of the first clean-up skills I taught was to dirty plates to the dishwasher and load them in. I didn't care if the plates ended up upside down, so long as they made it there. This worked fine for awhile - my daughters marching over to the dishwasher like little soldiers after each meal. Then one night something odd happened, my youngest daughter didn't finish her meal.

This itself did not bother us. My wife and I have never been “Clean your plate” parents, instead being the “If you don’t eat it now, you’ll eat it later” ones. It turns out, that we were not exactly that type either - or at least I was not. If my daughter left food on her plate one of two things would happen. Either I would sit at the table and pick at it and then I would take it over to the dishwasher. Or, she would take it over to the counter and after packing away leftovers, I would put it in the dishwasher. In both situations I was the one loading the dishwasher. The loan chore I had assigned to my daughter was now being done by me. My wife of course, was the one to point this out and I took comfort in my loss by eating the leftover comfort food.

Rendering New Theme...