House rules.

Apropos of absolutely nothing (except, possibly, a certain up-coming movie event), I hereby present

Sure I just ran this picture a few weeks ago – but can you think of a more appropriate illustration for this post? I certainly can’t.

Rules that exist in my house

  1. No Harry Potter movies until you have at least three books under your belt. To the extent that I can maintain some level of wonder in my children’s lives, I will lay down rules to do so, dag-nabbit!
  2. Ice-cream rule #1: We get ice-cream every Friday after camp. This is iron-clad. If the ice-cream man isn’t at his usual post-camp hang-out, we find ice-cream elsewhere. (Lest you think this generous, however, the guy is there Ice-cream rule #1 was formulated a few years back in response to a couple of weeks of constant begging — and thus, quite handily, serves as both carrot and stick: “No! And if you don’t stop whining about it, you won’t get any on Friday, either!”)
  3. Ice-cream rule #2: If an ice-cream truck drives down our street, everybody gets ice-cream. Also iron-clad, because: Dude. Summer! Now, it is undeniable that this rule has occasionally led to the unfortunate (or, depending on your perspective, fortunate) circumstance of both boy and girl getting two ice-creams back-to-back, because we just got back from camp, and hey-oh! Here comes an ice-cream truck! But, you know: A rule’s a rule! (Also in my defense: Summer!).
  4. You can swear all you want among your compatriots, but don’t let me hear it when an adult’s in spitting range. Honestly, the love-hate affair that Americans have with curse words is more than a little redonk. The best example of this redonk-ness is, of course, at your local cineplex: Kiddies can mos def handle dozens of violent deaths and oodles of hyper-sexualized women before they turn 13, but the f-word? Heaven forfend! Slap an R on that slice of rolling danger! So the husband and I have taken what we believe to be an reasonable middle road: American adults really do freak out when kids say those words, and American culture is the culture in which we live. But we don’t really care. So have enough respect for the adults around you to lie like a rug, that’s all we’re asking.
  5. No biting the table. You would think this goes without saying, but at age 2 1/2, the boy proved otherwise.


  1. Bob Toy

     /  July 11, 2011

    RE: 5. He’s just copying his mother…

  2. Ice Cream every friday AND when the Ice Cream truck comes by???
    I want you to be MY mom!!

    • Dude. That’s just gross.

      (confidential to everyone who isn’t SeussMD – SeussMD was my first boyfriend. Say it with me now, internet: ewwww!)

  3. Ok ok ok…so I’m a little bit Oedipal !!

  4. *ouch*

  5. om nom nom nom nom nom…..

  6. Nothing about jumping off the garage roof wearing cardboard wings? What kind of parents are you?

  7. Mom

     /  July 12, 2011

    Bobbie Toy????? hi, Bobbie.
    #6 must have read The Not-Just-Anybody-Family. Show this to the boy.

    • JHarper2

       /  July 12, 2011

      Especially this:
      Leave the cat alone, for what has the cat done, that you should so afflict it with tape? And hum not that humming in your nose as I read, nor stand between the light and the book. Indeed, you will drive me to madness. Nor forget what I said about the tape.

      • “…and hum not that humming in your nose as I read…”

        I hadn’t seen those rules in a long time – I really have to get a copy to the boy and girl. Laminated. Stat.

  8. I accept these rules. We may now partake of the ice cream as it is Friday