Category Archives: Mini Van Feed

Mini Van Feed: Parenting Mythbusters Style

These days I feel more like a lawyer than a parent. Van challenges me to present facts about why we should be doing this or that on a daily basis. As I am sure is the case with most children, there is one pervasive argument going on, that I have been dying to squash: Video Games vs Reading. To me there is a clear benefit to one over the other, but to him, video games = way more fun and exciting. Even though I know I am the parent, and can declare anything for no apparent reason, I am finding myself enjoying taking on these proof perfect challenges.

Enter Mythbusters. Van and I LOVE Mythbusters, the TV show. If you haven’t seen, it is awesome.

Hosted by Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage — and co-hosted by Tory Belleci, Kari Byron and Grant Imahara — the MYTHBUSTERS mix scientific method with gleeful curiosity and plain old-fashioned ingenuity to create their own signature style of explosive experimentation.

In each episode, the Mythbusters team tests folkloric myths using science and usually explosives. Some examples include: Can you make a boat completely out of duct tape? Can a sonic shock wave shatter glass? Is it possible for bullets to bend around obstacles with a side arm flick of the wrist? Can match heads alone fire a homemade cannon? Can a 7-foot ball of Legos become a rolling weapon of mass destruction? etc. etc.

We like Adam Savage more, but we like Jamie.  Grant Imahara is the real hero here, because he is the person that controlled R2-D2 in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace.

So recently, when the daily question of video games vs reading came up, I decided to squash it once and for all and prove to Van that he, himself, actually enjoyed reading more than video games by using a scientific method.

We would do a test case, like they do in Mythbusters. First, I would watch him play video games for half an hour and write down how many times he laughed. Then we would read, “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” to see how many times he would laugh during reading. This test was a tad loaded on my part, because I know that Van laughs hysterically while reading DWK.

We created a table to make it more official and ran the tests. There was no laughter during the video game. There were 5 laughter outbreaks during the reading. I showed him the table and he got it. I wish I could have bottled the look on his face. Table is now on fridge, for every time I get hassled about reading.


Mini Van Feed: On Elmer Fudd and Geico

After watching the commercial in a hotel room at 11:00 at night, exhausted from staying up to watch the final conclusion of Mythbusters, we see this commercial.  I kind of laugh and say, “Oh, that’s sort of funny.”

After about 30 seconds, Van yells, ” YEAH! GEICO!! I GET IT! BUT IT DOESN’T MAKE ANY SENSE!!”

Mini Van Feed: I guess she is a non-profit

Van wrapped his tooth like a present, and taped it to a quarter. I asked why he was giving a quarter to the tooth fairy. He said he wanted to make a donation.

Mini Van Feed: Why Bother

At the local convenience store picking out drinks. Van loves Gatorade.

Me: Van, which flavor do you want?

Van stands back looks at case.

Van: Really? I mean… honestly, does it matter? Don’t all Gatorades taste pretty much the same?

Mini Van Feed: Gingerbread Refugee Camp

Van and I attempted to make a gingerbread village.  It was a complete disaster.

The next morning I woke up and found this gingerbread math equation.

Translation: Van had four gingerbread houses. Two collapsed. How many are left?

Mini Van Feed: Go Back and Look Dawn

There have been an increasing number of memos posted around our apartment lately.

On Tuesdays, I let Van sleep with me. He gets to pick where he wants to eat out, I read to him instead of him reading to me and he gets to sleep with me. Big Tuesday. So this past Tuesday, Van is hard at work on the side of the bed that he sleeps on. He has gotten a stool and is laying out his slippers and folding his Snuggie (my mom made him a pint size Snuggie with planets on it) and setting out a thermos of water. Not two feet away is this sign.  He explains to me that the sign is just in case he accidentally walks past the stool with all of his morning amenities and needs a reminder to “Go Bak!”

This “Look Dawn Van!” memo was posted on his bedroom door. When I looked down myself to see why he needed a reminder to look down, I witnessed a long train of toys set up side by side. When I asked what the deal was, he explained, “the sign will tell me to look down, and when I look down, then I will slip on this ball, and the ball will roll into the car, and the car will go down the track and trigger the spinny thing, and the spinny thing runs the car into the snuggie, and the barrel shoots off that way and sets off the alarm clock.”

Mini Van Feed: Yoda Topper

Van tried to convince me to buy a Yoda Christmas tree topper at Target yesterday. When I said, “What’s so Christmassy about Yoda?”, he said, “What are you talking about?! He’s GREEN, isn’t he?!”