Friday, July 31, 2009


One of the best pieces of parenting advice I ever received was from an old friend. I don't think I even had kids at the time and he was not offering advice he was just telling me a story.

His kid was maybe 3 or 4 at the time and had his first dentist appointment. The dentist discovered several cavities and needed to drill and fill many teeth. My friend was shocked at the cost of the bill, which was like $2500.00, for teeth that were only going to fall out in a few years. What was happening was my friend could only get his kid to sleep at night if the kid had a sippy cup of warm milk at bed time. The child would fall asleep with the sippy cup.

Apparently milk, which is supposed to be good for teeth and bones, will rot teeth if it sits in the mouth overnight, night after night.

I remember this story and the cost for the dentist every time I put my kids to bed. Part of our bed time routine is brush their teeth every night and the only thing they can drink after brushing is a few sips of water.

Also, did you know someone from West Virginia invented toothpaste? Otherwise they would have called it Teethpaste.

Feel free to use this joke whenever you want. I usually say the Kensington section of Philly instead of West Virginia.


GoodNites is still running their Special Bedtime Moments contest. If you enter the contest you have a chance to win GoodNites Bedtime Kit which includes a $100 gift certificate to, a $50 gift certificate to Borders as well as a blanket, journal, and tote bag from GoodNites. See image of prize on this post.

Contest Rules: Go to Special Bedtime Moments and share a special bedtime moment shared by you and your family (can be a story, tip for getting kids to sleep or rundown of your nighttime routine). You can enter again if you would like. Make sure you leave a comment here that you have entered the contest for a chance to win the tote gift bag.

The winner I randomly picked from this post is BKP. BKP Please email me so I can get your address.

Disclaimer: I have partnered with GoodNites for this series of posts; I am being compensated for writing about my family's bedtime routine and for promoting this contest, not for endorsing a product.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


Let's say one day you bring your lunch, which is either potato salad or pasta salad or some kind of a rice and bean dish, to work in a nice reusable plastic container. Then say you eat your lunch but you never rinse out the container because you are just going to wash it when you get home. But only you forget and leave it in your car.

For two weeks.

In July.

When you find the container, you notice that there is something growing in it that does not resemble rice or potato or pasta. Do you just throw the container out? Or do you clean it and reuse it? What do you clean it with?

Monday, July 27, 2009


We attended two parties this weekend; a housewarming party on Saturday evening and a 5-year-old birthday party on Sunday afternoon. At both parties Lauren and I did not know a majority of the people.

I am happy to report that Lauren only had to apologize for me twice.

We were at the housewarming party for only about 30 minutes when Lauren entered the room in which I sat chatting with an older couple. We were all just finishing a laugh as Lauren entered. She quickly assessed the laughter in the room as a somewhat nervous laughter from the older couple and I of course had some stupid look on my face.

"Oh and this is my wife." I said as I tired to waive Lauren over to introduce her to the older couple.

Lauren nodded a hello and said, "I just want to apologize for anything that my husband may have said or will possibly say tonight."

The next day we attended the birthday party which was held at a local farm/petting zoo. There were like 20 kids and their parents at the party. With so many animals to feed, pet, ride and antagonize I did not get too much of a chance to meet the other parents. Lauren did pre-apologize to one couple that we had a chance to chat with.

All of the kids gathered around a very large table in the barn for cake. The hosts passed out party hats and Blow-outs . There was a bit of commotion as parents helped their kids with the hats and party favors. I was at one end of the barn and Lauren was at the other end. A little boy at my end of the barn yelled, "Wait, Mommy. Daddy needs a blow."

And just as there was a slight pause in the noise and commotion, I said, (which I directed to my friend C who standing next to me and I thought I said it kind of under my breath, but it came out actually louder, barns have a weird way of carrying sounds) "What daddy doesn't need one?"
The awkward laughter traveled up to the other side of the barn. I caught Lauren's eyes and she smiled one of those "Lord help me" smiles.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

No Name Brand Cans of Soup Were Harmed

Well it took me a while from the time I got my first letter from Campbell's, but I finally got the new look for Poop and Boogies. What do you think?

I want to thank my friend Caren from HandleWithCaren who did all the photo design work. I met Caren when I was a freshman and she was a senior in high school. I think we shared an art class together. I say "shared" because I was in Drawing I and she was in Drawing III, or Expert Level Drawing or something like that, we had the same teacher but were on different levels. She was/is awesome, I kind of sucked. I always looked up to her as an artist. Even after she graduated and went on to art college she would check in on me to see how my artwork was progressing. She would look at my work, compliment it and make me feel better. She kept me interested in art and always made me feel like I had worth as an artist. She was being nice.

I stopped pursuing a career in art after my first art history class. Art History Class was the most physically challenging class I have ever taken in my entire life. The physical challenge? Staying awake. Anyone who can stay awake enough in Art History to pass the class truly loves art. I applaud those people. Caren is one of those people. She went on to be a freelance artist and advertising person in New York. Every now and then I will talk to Caren and ask her what she is working on. She would tell me, and being nice she would ask me how I felt about different pitches and what not. Again she makes me feel like I have worth as an artist. I know now, that she takes any idea I may throw her way and does the exact opposite. That is why she is a successful advertiser.

Thanks to Jo-Lynne at DCR Design for doing all the layout code work. She was great to work with. She was very patient handling my technical requests that usually involved the words "thingamabob", "Whoziwhatsits" and "you know that thing, that code, HTMMLL button link thingy."

There a couple of buttons on the side bar somewhere. One button is the "about me" page. One of those buttons "MMM Good" will take you to a page of links to various blogs I read or other websites I like to visit. Not every blog or site has been added yet (I still have some work I need to do) I plan to change those links on a regular basis or as my tastes in websites change.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you like the new look.

Monday, July 20, 2009


I pulled into my driveway from "my" parking space on the street so I could back out and turn around. As I was backing out, a car, I did not recognize, came down the street and parked in "my" space against the curb. I waited a moment to make sure they were not going to inch ahead past my driveway and park in front of the neighbors house. They did not.

I kept my eye on the car as I pulled out. I was trying to see if I recognized the driver but it must have appeared as though I was staring. The other car in "my" space was a shiny blue. It looked brand new. I pulled along the side of the blue vehicle and the driver lowered his window. It was my ex-neighbor. I don't know if ex-neighbor is the right word for it. We didn't break-up or anything. I would say old neighbor but he is not really old. He is my age. When I moved into my house he was in between jobs and lived with his parents, who are my neighbors. He then found a job a few hours away and moved out. So he is my ex-neighbor, or maybe former neighbor works.
Yes, former neighbor.

Anyway, my former neighbor lowered his window and said hello. I was still eyeballing his car because it was all bright and shiny and new and really nice. We exchanged quick pleasantries and I was not really paying attention because I was thinking to myself that he must be doing pretty well with his new gig with the shiny new car and all. He sensed that I was staring and asked if it was okay that he parked in "my" space. I laughed it off and said no-problem. I started to explain that I was staring (you know because I felt weird for staring) because I am familiar with most of the cars that park on the street and I was trying to figure whose car it was. Just then a woman exited from the passenger side of the shiny blue car.

My former neighbor introduced me to the woman.

"Bill," he said, "this is my girlfriend..." He said her name but I don't remember what it was. I was still focused on the car.

I said a quick hello to the woman and then I nodded towards his car, which his girlfriend was standing against, and I asked, "So is that a new ride?"

There was an awkward silence as both my former neighbor and his girlfriend were trying to figure out if I was talking about her.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Dear Lady in the Green Shirt and Khaki Pants,

I am sorry. I really am. You see flying on plane, let alone one of the small buses with wings, makes me very nervous and a little skittish. When I ran into you I had just landed at Cincinnati Airport terminal B and was somewhat shaken up by the slightly rough landing.

I appreciate that you were understanding and that you answered my question honestly when I asked "Where are the urinals?"

You smiled as you looked up from the sink as you fixed your pants and said, "You are in the ladie's room. The urinals are in the men's room."

Again, I am sorry.


Monday, July 13, 2009

Frankie Pickle

I have been to my fair amount of art shows. I figure I have paid my dues and there is no need for me to ever go to another one. When Lauren asked me, Saturday morning, if I wanted to go to the Tinicum Art Festival that afternoon, I don't know what possessed me to say yes. She even asked with the stipulation that I don't rush her through the displays, vendors and artist's showcases, like I usually do, and I still said yes.

I read on the website that there would be entertainment for the kids as well as some local author/illustrators who would be signing books. I was interested in meeting two of them; Rich Egielski, a Caldecott Medal recipient, and the other, Eric Wight, an accomplished comic book artist.

The festival was fun. The kids enjoyed meeting a monkey, the live music, the food and the swings. I kept telling them we had a swing set at home and there was no reason for us to travel the 45 minutes just so they could swing on the swings but that did not matter to them. I also tried the same kind of argument with Lauren telling her we have artwork at home and there was no reason to travel 45 minutes to look at other artwork, but she reminded me that I was not to rush her.

Eventually we made our way to the author's booth and I was pleasantly surprised that both the Caldecott winner and Eric Wight occupied the booth at the same time. Eric was signing his new book Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom. I introduced myself and made small talk with Eric and I tried to get Maxfield and Wyatt engaged in the conversation. I threw a question at Max which I knew he knew the answer.

"Illustrator." Max said.

Both Eric and the Caldecott winner raised their eyebrows as though they were impressed with a 5-year-old knowing the word "illustrator". I then asked Max to tell the authors his full name which he responded "Maxfield". I told them his named was inspired by Maxfield Parrish. Eric smiled and said he thought that was pretty cool.

Rich, the Caldecott winner, chuckled and said "That's great." He pointed to Wyatt and asked "What the little guy's name? N.C. ?"

I smiled and said " As a matter of fact his name is Wyatt. Inspired by N.C. Wyeth."

Both author/illustrators thought my kid's names were cool. Where else besides an art festival would other people actually get the inspiration behind Maxfield's and Wyatt's name?

I made small talk with Eric about his book and I decided to buy it. He was funny and a decent guy. I was feeling all artsy, hip and cool hanging out with and talking to writers and I mentioned to Eric Wight that I had a blog and that maybe I would review Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom.

"Oh that would be great." He said. " I will give you my business card and maybe we can set up an interview."

I took the business card and then I...then I ...I got cold feet. In my head I started to panic. I got really nervous. I was thinking Interview? What kind of questions would I ask? I would totally sound like Chris Farley on SNL. I am so not cool and hip. A published author was asking me to interview him? What the? He must think I am with Huffington or something. Wait until he finds out my blog is called Poop and Boogies.

I froze. I said nothing. I thanked him for his time. I mumbled something about emailing him. I shook his hand and I left.

I caught up with Lauren and told her about the exchange and me suddenly getting all nervous. She laughed and said, " I think you may have another man crush developing."


My review of Frankie Pickle. I bought the book on Saturday. I have read it to Maxfield three times. He has requested that I read it more. That right there is an excellent review.

Frankie Pickle is a chapter book that switches between comic pages and prose to tell the story. The comic pages are used when Frankie is using his imagination and the prose for when he is in the "real" world. The style of Eric Wight reminds me of a cross between a Calvin and Hobbes comic and the stories of Henry the Explorer, which are my favorite books from when I was a kid.
The characters, artwork and story are perfect for kids ages 4 to 10. I really have fun reading Frankie Pickle so I guess it would be perfect for a parent too.

So if I do get a chance to interview him what questions should I ask?

Nothing Itches

Lauren and I were married Seven years ago today. I am still amazed that someone as beautiful as this...

...married me.

I am also amazed at the stretching capabilities of spandex and how the costumes fit the groomsmen.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009


I need a little help with a certain observation I have made.

I am just going to come out and say it. My boys love holes. The second one of my boys discovers a hole, not matter what the size, shape or type they immediately have to fill it by shoving something in it.

I'm pretty observant of my kids and how they play. I am very observant about what they find interesting and fascinating. My boys have always been captivated by holes. If they find a hole in the backyard they have to prod it with a stick. If they see an opening in the bottom of a clay planter they have to stuff it with leaves. If they find a depression in the wall where there once was a nail, they instantly have to stuff Wolverine's claws in there. They are constantly sticking things in holes.

When my boys play and interact with other kids I try to watch and see if the other kids behave the same way my kids do. I have 10, or so, nieces and nephews that Max and Wyatt see and play with on a regular basis. My kids also get together with various friends through out the week. Sure some kids prefer sports over action figures and there are differences from how girls and boys play, but for most I am always on the lookout to make sure my kids do the same things that other kids do; that my kids are not weird.

So far, I have noticed that my kids are not weird when it comes to holes.

My observation, the one I need help with, is this: All boys love holes and have to stick stuff in them. Girls not so much.

Please let me know your thoughts. Am I off base with this? Do you agree? Is it the Y Chromosome? Or is it just that my boys are weird?

Monday, July 06, 2009

The Need to Feed.

This weekend at my family's annual 4th of July/Mom's (Momo9) Birthday celebration I found myself saying something I never thought I would say.

There were about 25 kids at the party. Maxfield and Wyatt were distracted by all the things to do while at my brother's house, like Wiffle ball, a sand box, horseshoes and 23 other kids to play with that they did not want to stop to eat lunch. I know that when my kids have empty stomachs they are 78% more likely to have a meltdown. I kept asking them to sit and have a sandwich or some fruit. They both refused and I let it go because they were having a great time.

Sometime around mid-afternoon I could tell that my kids were getting a bit irritable and I thought it had to do with them being hungry. I told Max and Wyatt that they needed to stop playing and sit down and eat something. They both put up an argument as I lead them to the food table. I knew if they did not eat there may be meltdown. Most of the lunch items had been cleared and so I offered them what was available. They both put up a fight. They wanted to play.

And that's when I said, "Look, you are going to sit down and eat these brownies and Snow-cones and you are going to like it!"

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Sleepy Stories

Now that Maxfield and Wyatt are in bunk beds I cannot read them bedtime stories anymore. They both want to look at the pictures and, quite frankly, I don't have the strength or stamina in my arms to hold the book out in their direction while reading, plus I can't read upside down (I always admired teachers who could). So now, I have to just tell them stories. Once they are settled into their beds I will lay on the bottom bunk with Wyatt to say prayers and tell stories for about 5 to 10 minutes.

I have run through all of the classics such as the Three Bears, Three Pigs and Jack and the Bean Stalk. I have told them every origin story of every super hero that I know. I was quickly running out of ideas. I started to make up stories each night but after a long day and finally getting a moment to relax, being creative was a struggle. I decided it would be best for me to tell the kids the stories from my youth. I would tell them quick stories about Johhny Socko and the Giant Robot. I told them about Sigmund and his friends Johnny and Scott. I dazzled them with Steve Austin fighting Bigfoot.

One week, each night, I told them (the best to my recollection) the cliff notes version of the first couple of episodes of Starblazers. After the telling the story of Derek Wildstar, Nova and the Gamilons for 15 minutes I would start to fall asleep. I have a bad habit of talking in my sleep and being somewhat delirious. I would continue babbling for a few minutes only to have the kids wake me up so I would continue the space opera. I would have no idea where I drifted off in the story and I would need Max to recap for me.

"I'm sorry. I drifted off. Where was I Max?"

"The Gamilons attacked after Gopher and Captain Stuben fired the wave motion gun at Pluto's moon." Max told me.

I was groggy and wasn't sure I heard him."Who fired the wave motion gun?"

"You said Gopher and Captain Stuben but I don't know who they are. And Dad who is Mr Rourke?"


GoodNites is still running their Special Bedtime Moments contest. If you enter the contest you have a chance to win GoodNites Bedtime Kit which includes a $100 gift certificate to, a $50 gift certificate to Borders as well as a blanket, journal, and tote bag from GoodNites. See image of prize on this post.

Contest Rules: Go to and share a special bedtime moment shared by you and your family (can be a story, tip for getting kids to sleep or rundown of your nighttime routine). You can enter again if you would like. Make sure you leave a comment here that you have entered the contest for a chance to win the tote gift bag.
The winner from my last post in June is Charity.

Disclaimer: I have partnered with GoodNites for this series of posts; I am being compensated for writing about my family's bedtime routine and for promoting this contest, not for endorsing a product.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

My First Car.

My first car was a 1976 Ford Granada which was the color of rust and gray primer paint. It's two door body was practically made of rust, compound putty and wood filler. I bought the car, a month before I turned eighteen, for 300 bucks. The lady who sold it to me told me it needed some work. I made sure I had some extra money to pay for a paint job but I knew I would need to do the sanding and repairing myself.

The first repairs I made to the body were to ensure it would pass state inspection. I patched all the holes in the driver side floor and made sure that the roof stopped leaking. I tore out the largest areas of rust on the exterior and filled them with mesh wire and putty and Spackle. I covered the front of the car in a coat of gray primer. As a joke, but also because I knew I was going to do more work on the car, I spray painted black bats on the doors to give it the Bat-mobile feel.

I drove the "Bat-mobile" around for a little while, fully intending to finish the work on the car, until I was in an accident. While cruising down Route 309 another car clipped my front bumper on the passenger side. There was no real damage except that my bumper stuck out about a foot and half on the driver's side. I knew the car would not pass inspection with the bumper jutting out so I stopped working on the car.

One day my dad asked why I stopped the work and I told him about the bumper. He laughed and told me to pull the car into the driveway, angle across the front yard and back up so that my car was perpendicular to the driveway with the drivers side facing the street. My dad then got into his station wagon, backed up the neighbor's driveway across the street, looked both ways and then gunned it. He crashed his car into my car. Right on the bumper, pushing it back about 18 inches and almost perfectly into place. I drove the Bat-mobile around for the rest of the summer, knowing I would complete the paint job before I drove it to the community college in the fall.

A couple of weeks later my passenger side window shattered. I stopped working on the body of the car because I needed to save up and buy a new window and window motor. I used a trash bag for a window for the rest of the fall and most of the winter. Most people at the community college ended up knowing me from my one window Bat-mobile. I was the kid who marched to the beat of his own drummer and people could not help but be curious. Soon I was more social than studious and I did not do well at school.

I decided I would have to get a job and I applied for a position at Prudential. I told myself if I got the job I would get my car painted. If I was going to be working in an office and acting professional I would have to get my car to look professional. I got the job. I drove the Bat-mobile to work everyday. I replaced the window with money from my first paycheck. People who pulled into the parking lot at the same time I did every day, recognized me as the kid with the Bat-mobile and they would call me Batman. They were curious and would ask questions. Most people appreciated that I was a different and that I "would actually drive around in a car like that". I liked the attention I was getting. People knew who I was.

I was doing really well in my position at Prudential and the department manager seemed to like me and was putting me on the fast track for promotions. One of the reasons he liked me was due to the fact that many people throughout the building were familiar with me. He could not quite put his finger on it but he liked my "networking". He liked that I "thought outside of the box". He did not realize that I did not network, people just talked about me and the car and when they could they would ask me about it. I did not think outside the box, I just did not care what others thought of me.

The department manager caught wind of the Bat-mobile and called me into his office in May of 89. He explained that although it did not matter to him what kind of car I drove, if I were to move up in the company I may have to travel and he asked me what type of impression would my car leave on clients. My answer was that I would introduce myself to clients as Bruce Wayne and I would tell them that I fight crime at night. He did not seem to get my joke and I then told him I planned on changing the car in the next month or so.

June of 89 Tim Burton's Batman hit the theaters. It was wildly successful. It was now cool to like Batman. In one weekend my car went from being a cool, hip, conversation piece to being a fad. In one weekend I went from being a free thinking, different, quirky, cool dude to a trend follower who was a little too infatuated with a movie. People stopped asking questions. They stopped looking at me like I was cool and started to look at me like I was weird.
I drove the Bat-mobile for a few more weeks when the engine seized. I don't think the car could handle that it was no longer cool.