The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Opinion

March 22, 2013

LEVINE: Passing away the time until spring really arrives

CLINTON — I’m taking back all those times I complained about the heat.

We were spoiled last year with consistent 80-degree days, and now the joke’s on us.

We brought in spring with a high of 24 degrees, and the forecast doesn’t get much better during the next week. It wouldn’t be so bad if we just had a good day here or there to get us out of the house.

But that hasn’t happened, creating cabin fever in my home.

It’s gotten so bad that even the baby boy living inside my wife is kicking more rapidly every day. Sure, the doctors will say that’s normal for a growing baby to increase movement. But I think he knows that it’s time to get out and enjoy some fresh air.

The extended winter is not only wearing on my wife and me, but my daughter is starting to feel the effects. And by starting, I mean she’s been ready for outdoor play since December.

Daily sprints from one wall to the other have become almost a daily routine for my daughter and me. She scours the house looking for new toys, but it usually ends up in a dead end, so she returns to her doll house, where the storyline of her characters resembles one from a daytime soap opera during the hot summer months.

Because of the extended winter, though, it has provided me a chance to catch up on the daily gossip in my 2-year-old’s life. With her third birthday right around the corner, she’s becoming more comfortable in conversation, which has provided me insight into her little world.

The life of a 2-year-old doesn’t seem too complicated, but every day for the last week, she’s discovered a new best friend. Even for middle school girls, that would be quite the changeover from day to day.

Usually the new best friend is someone from daycare, and every once in awhile, it’s a boy. Since my brain can’t comprehend her dating, I usually ask the typical questions about the boys she meets, like how many timeouts do they average per week? Who do they run with? How much lunch do they spill on the floor? You know, typical questions to ask about the male gender.

She usually shrugs my interrogation off by saying she’s already invited the boy to dinner that night.

I have a feeling that I’m in for a lot of trouble later in life.

I assume his battery-operated mini-mobile can’t make it to my house all in one charge, so I dismiss her invitation and check to see how her babysitting jobs are going.

She may not be the best businesswoman in America, since she doesn’t earn any money, but she watches about nine “kids” at any time during the day. Sure, those kids are technically dolls, but for being stuffed and unable to move on their own, her dolls cause some problems.

Timeouts are another daily chore that Baby Aurora and Rosie are usually getting themselves into. It’s a tough punishment, but they’re pros at sitting in the time-out chair, waiting for the timer to beep.

Luckily for them, my daughter has less patience than her parents, and the dolls stay in timeout for about 5 seconds. Either way, it’s a tough life when you get punished without having a way to defend yourself.

Lastly, we normally converse about how work is going. She has busy days, with her babysitting gigs, cooking responsibilities, and throwing every toy around the house in a bag, that she rarely has time to hear how my day went.

So, this week, I still had some items to finish at work after picking her up, so I asked if she wanted to come along and see me work. She was thrilled so we trekked to the newsroom, and she dove right in.

She pounded away at the keyboard, spun around in the chair and had many conversations on the phone...with me, sitting right next to her. She was thrilled, especially since Mom wasn’t there, meaning that obviously she was home, because there’s only one “work” in the world, and according to my daughter, my wife and I work together.

She was a little disappointed when we came home and I had to explain that there are many jobs in the world, and that Mom and Dad don’t actually go to the same place every day.

But it didn’t contain her excitement about work. She didn’t stop talking about it all night, constantly reminding me that she had a “lot of fun at work.” That’s a sentence not many employees string together. That’s the world of a 2-year-old. It’s unexpected, but a refreshing way to pass the time until spring arrives.

Scott Levine is an award-winning Associate Editor at the Clinton Herald. He can be reached at scottlevine@clintonherald.com.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Walter Williams mug Wage discrimination everywhere 'President Obama Vows Zero Tolerance on Gender Wage Gap," read one headline. Another read, "Women Still Earned 77 Cents On Men's Dollar In 2012." It's presumed that big, greedy corporations are responsible for what is seen as wage injustice. Before

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Celebrity quack moms are a terrible influence on everyday parents

    On April 15, the actress Alicia Silverstone released a book called "The Kind Mama: A Simple Guide to Supercharged Fertility, a Radiant Pregnancy, a Sweeter Birth, and a Healthier, More Beautiful Beginning." It's chock-full of attachment parenting lessons and dangerous misinformation.

    April 24, 2014

  • Community College provides good, affordable education The people of the Clinton area can be very proud of their outstanding educational services starting with pre-school through the 12th grade. In addition we have Clinton Community College, which provides two more years of education with preparation for

    April 24, 2014

  • Will Illinois school aid formula get a makeover? People in Illinois hear a lot about schools not getting enough funding from the state, but not much about an effort afoot in Springfield to develop a fairer way to distribute the money. Whether Senate Bill 16, the School Funding Reform Act, can achie

    April 24, 2014

  • Lindley, Tom.jpg Basketball stars may linger on campus a while longer

    The NBA seems serious about raising its minimum age, which could signal the end of the one-and-done era in college basketball.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Race card season again? After years of mostly hedging any suggestion that racism has anything to do with President Barack Obama's ferocious opposition, there's a new racial etiquette in town. Top Democrats are slipping off the kid gloves. "To a significant extent, the Repub

    April 21, 2014

  • Report suggests a reasonable approach Illinois has long had the most units of government in the nation - 6,963 at last count. Do we need so many taxing districts to provide governmental services across the Land of Lincoln? Supporters and opponents of the status quo can both find somethin

    April 21, 2014

  • Stand up against child abuse April is National Child Abuse Month and I would like to take a moment to share that our children are precious and Clinton County has one of the highest in the state when it comes to children who have been abused. You are able to check the statistics

    April 19, 2014

  • Bills to move quickly in final days Tuesday marks the 100th and last day of this scheduled session. After Tuesday, clerks will be sent home and legislators driving and living expenses will no longer be paid by the state. That usually means remaining legislation and Fiscal Year 2015 bu

    April 19, 2014

  • Reducing money's influence in politics The (Crystal Lake) Northwest Herald There's no doubt that money influences politics -- in big ways. Big money influences politics in even bigger ways, sometimes leading to corruption. That's why there are federal caps on the amount of money someone c

    April 19, 2014

Poll

With the Clinton County Justice Coordinating Commission and the Clinton County Board of Supervisors discussing proposals to construct a new jail, do you think the time has come for Clinton County to construct such a facility?

Yes
No
     View Results
Facebook