The Bears and Dogs Just Ramble On.

With the first day of school looming, I put the boys to bed. We cuddled together for a quick bedtime story. Then, it was time for our “show.”

Nearly every night, the kids get a story from the book I wrote, followed by a stuffed-animal extravaganza of sorts. Both Bill and I do “shows” for the kids. It’s just a fun thing that started when the stuffed animals started “talking” to the kids when they were younger.

The shows I do have evolved into tips and advice (from bears and dogs) about things that are relevant in the lives of the kids. For example, tonight’s show was going to be full of tips about surviving the first day of fifth grade.

The animals always give some very good advice, along with some absolutely terrible advice, which is hysterical to the kids. I hadn’t lived until I saw them imitating the stuffed animals’ bad advice. Some nights, I’ve laughed so hard, tears were streaming down my face.

But tonight, the kids didn’t want to see my show. They wanted – again – a show from Daddy.

I’d like to say that my feelings aren’t hurt, because my husband is a wonderful man. And bedtime is practically the only time they have together.

But Bill’s shows are drastically different from mine, and not nearly as composed. He picks up the animals and waves them around without any real purpose. How is he going to teach the kids anything with that kind of insanity? The kids call his shows “random” – and I must agree.

Often, the bears and dogs just ramble on about nothing. Or they recite song lyrics from 1967. Or they do remakes of old TV game shows. Often one animal has an Australian accent, another one is British, and another just got off the bus from Alabama.

Okay, now that I think about it, Bill’s shows are probably funnier than mine.

And they definitely last longer. Sometimes the kids just pile the animals on top of Daddy, then wait until he’s used every one of them. It can take 45 minutes to get through all of that plush.

So instead of tips and advice – no matter how funny I had planned to be – tonight the boys wanted a randomly funny show that lasts a long time.

I guess I can accept that.

Bill and I do different kinds of shows. We play differently with the kids. We have different personalities, so it makes sense that we would create different types of shows.

And while we may not agree on everything (since nobody agrees on everything), Bill and I definitely complement each other in our parenting skills.

The kids won a stuffed banana last week at the amusement park. As I’m writing this blog, I can hear that the new toy is “talking” with a thick, Southern accent in Shane’s bedroom. It just said, “Did I tell you that I’m a banana? I have a lot of appeal!”

Bill just comes up with this stuff on the fly.

So I guess it’s okay that he literally stole the show tonight.

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