Go Ask Dada, ‘Cause Mama Doesn’t Know Squat, or Vice Versa.


Tamara Like Camera here, happily filling in for Eli during his vacation. I remember when I first came to this blog, a long time ago and in a galaxy far, far away, and I worried that I would be laughed right out of here, due to my lack of knowledge (of any sort) of futebol or fatherhood. I do, however, have the market cornered on food. And Stormtroopers, for that matter. It only took one Stormtrooper photo to make me a regular reader. Also, he never laughs at me here. And so back I come, each post, learning more and more about the world through Eli’s features and his “Go Ask Daddy” posts. Now my daughter is younger than his three daughters, but she certainly has asked some interesting questions over the last week. Now let’s see what I can do with them, shall we?

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I think I remember one of the first times it happened. Scarlet and I were walking back home after our long walk to the mailbox, while (then) baby Des was sleeping, and she asked me: “Mama, what makes wind blow?” Barely looking up from my latest edition of Us Weekly, I replied, “Oh, I don’t freakin’ know.” And then we both giggled and giggled all the way home, where I made a mental note to at least look up the answer for her so she wouldn’t think I was a total deadbeat. I was not proud. Of any of it – the terrible answer OR the reading of Us Weekly while walking with my daughter through a beautiful nature path.

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Instead of consulting Wikipedia like maybe I should have, I sent her question to my husband to see what he would have said in my place. Here was his answer: “Hot air and cold air move differently. Ever notice it’s hotter upstairs? That’s because hot air likes to move up. Wind is caused by the same thing. Hot air moves up and cold air rushes to where the hot air used to be.”

Are you ever really prepared for the peppering of questions you’ll have to answer after your kids get old enough to have storable memories? I wasn’t prepared. To credit myself, I was an excellent student in school and I actually do know many things. I’m just not great at explaining them, especially in the moment. I freeze up, although her adorable face is much kinder than my childhood teachers’ faces looked when the same thing happened. I know what words mean and how weather works, but only in my mind as this big, cloudy mass of feelings and memories. How to explain that to a five-year-old? How to explain it to myself?

Sometimes I just need a little help in the matter. Sometimes we all need a little help.

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Although there are some questions that need not be researched, or even answered twice! They don’t require too much thought:

Scarlet: “What’s a bong?”
Dada: “It’s just another kitchen utensil.”
Mama: “It’s like a drum! A bongo drum.”

End of story with that one. Until she’s at least 18. Or 33.

And sometimes, especially in a Star Wars loving family, you may find yourself in the middle of a conversation such as this:

Scarlet: “Why are there only three Star Warers?” (not a typo)

Dada: “Well, they only made three but there are more being made right NOW!”

Mama: (whispering to only Dada) “So you’re not going to tell her about Episodes I, II and III?”

Dada: “Not until she’s 18.” (or 33)

Strong Star Wars opinions aside, I have compiled a small list of her weekly questions. There are certain questions that my husband can answer and I cannot, without looking to Google. And there some questions I can answer and my husband cannot, without looking blankly in my direction and asking for help. I decided to submit the questions to my husband that I had already answered to see how his answers measured up against mine! So now you can see if/how we are either screwing up our daughter, or making her even more well rounded. (I like to believe the second)

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1.

Scarlet: “Why is there ice?”
Mama: “What? So that we finally have a good use for our Han Solo in Carbonite ice cube makers. Obvs.”
Scarlet: “Obvs.”
Dada: “Because when you freeze water, that’s what forms. But you can also freeze water and turn it to snow.”

2.

Scarlet: “What was your favorite thing to do when you were a kid?”
Mama: “Books, books, and more books. I’d also climb trees, and read books. And I liked to eat, while reading books.”
Dada: “I used to love finding a really good stick and playing by a stream near my house.”

3.

Scarlet: “What is Yoda?”
Mama: “A Jedi Master, he is. And a cool guy who lives in our basement right now.”

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(Photographic proof)

Dada: “Just Yoda.”
Scarlet: “What IS he?”
Dada: “A Jedi Master?”
Scarlet: “What’s a Jedi Master?”
Dada: “A good guy who has gotten so good at The Force that they can now teach it to other people.”
Scarlet: “Does Darth Fader (not a typo) think the Emperor is a bad guy?”
Dada: “He does, but right now he’s still a bad guy. He likes to hang out with other bad guys.”
Scarlet: “It doesn’t make sense because you said that Darth Fader found out that the Emperor was a real bad guy and so that doesn’t really make sense..”
Scarlet: (a minute later)…”Ok now it does. Now I know how it can.” (she never enlightened us!)
Scarlet: “Why are they called Imperial Walkers?”
Dada: “Because they’re made by Imperials and they are big, walking things.”

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4.

Scarlet: “Why didn’t Fiona come to my birthday party?”
Dada: “Who’s Fiona?”
Mama: “She was on vacation.” (in my head, I said this:) “I didn’t invite her. Between the bounce house, the cotton candy machine, and the face painter, we had at some point to cut down the list. So sorry, Scarlet, the list could not include the girl that never invited you to her parties, the boy who pushed you down at school, and the adorable Fiona – who I don’t even know.”

5.

Scarlet: “What do you actually do when you’re at work?”
Mama: “I pose people and take their photos. Or I don’t pose people and take their photos. That’s even better. Then I put the photos into my computer from my camera, and I sharpen them and add contrast. All while you’re sleeping, the cat is laying across my keyboard, and the other cat is farting in my lap. I also write stuff for money.”
Dada: “I spend a lot of time emailing and talking to people.”

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*Bonus Question!

Scarlet: “Why do they never pee or poop in Sofia the First?”
Mama: “There are too many other fun things to do!”
Dada: “They do, but a Poop Griffin steals it all.”

**Bonus Question #2!

Scarlet: (while watching Lady and the Tramp) “Can we get a dog like that (Lady) when Athena dies?”
Dada: “…..”
Mama: “…..”

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The bottom line and a special note. These answers are not meant to treat, diagnose or cure anything. This post is mostly in good, old-fashioned fun. We give her well-informed answers the best way we know how. Answer what you know, from your heart. We all know what we love. For everything else, look it up from a reputable source!

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Tamara is a professional photographer at Tamara Camera Photography, a mama of two, a writer/blogger at Tamara (Like) Camera and a nearly professional cookie taster. She has been known to be all four of those things at all hours of the day and night. She is a very proud contributor to the book, The Mother Of All Meltdowns. After two cross country moves, due to her intense Bi-Coastal Disorder, she lives with her husband, daughter, son and rescue pets in glorious western Massachusetts. She spends her spare time looking for moose, taking pictures of her kids, and maybe – just maybe – teaching them about photography. Her five-year-old took this headshot (below) when she was only four. She can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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36 thoughts on “Go Ask Dada, ‘Cause Mama Doesn’t Know Squat, or Vice Versa.”

    1. I agree! And trust me – these are the cleaner ones! I didn’t want to tarnish Eli’s page with some of her doozies.

  1. Great guest post and I loved the Q & A, Tamara! Giggling all over again about the helmet after reading your post on your blog! You have Yoda TOO?!?!?! You’re slayin’ me girl!! 🙂

    1. Oh yes! Yoda! I have no idea why he’s banished to the basement. One of Cassidy’s friends got it for him years ago and a few of them called it something to the effects of, “the reason you’ll never..well, you know…get girls.”
      Let’s just say that kind of repellent is a magnet for girls like me.

  2. Hey, name sister! I can’t believe your daughter asked the wind question!! Just the other day, my son asked the exact same question. I didn’t even have a US weekly to look up from, but I certainly had to admit that I didn’t freakin’ know… yet again! So thank you, Dada. Just one more question before I face my son: Why / how DOES air get hot? I need to be prepared, you know.

    That was a cute post with adorable pictures! Thank you for making me smile!

    1. Name sister! With wind-related questions being thrown our way! Maybe Dada can come and answer this or I may need to consult Wikipedia. I feel like Eli would have given his daughters a more thorough answer, don’t you?

      Glad it made you smile! My kids were happy to do my weird photoshoot. As is often the case.

  3. Thank you for this. My girl’s very tired right now (our fault- we’re in ‘hey, it’s the holidays, sure you can stay up a bit longer’ mode) and super grumpy. Lila’s 5 now, so we’re not used to it anymore from her- Noah’s the one who’s developing his strop. It was good to be reminded of what she’s usually like- a million questions and loves Yoda too (and dinosaurs, dragons and just learning that princesses are OK). Keeps us on our toes and makes us see the world in a different way.

    1. Thank YOU for this. I love looking at the world in new ways. Ah, parenting – where they teach us as much as, if not more, about this crazy world.

  4. what a wonderful post, and a look into the mind of a child, and how it all works, as well as the mind of two different parents and the way their minds work. i think you’ve made eli proud, the the truest jedi sense. best, beth

    1. I think you’ve just made my day. I aimed both to make Eli proud, and to do it in the Jedi way.
      Use The Force!

  5. Love that last disclaimer and if you ever have anymore science type questions you could always text me, because I taught 8th grade science once upon a time and probably can still recall, some of it help like the wind/friction question. But still you could always just text me for the hell of it, because you know I will always answer – love you 😉

    1. You know I love you too! I could have been texting you both for help in WordPress for this post, and for the answers!
      Sadly, I don’t think I even possess 8th grade science skills at this point. My brain has seemingly leaked out everything except for English, Lit, Psychology and Lunch. Obviously.

      1. If I hadn’t taught it, since math is more my thing (at least that is what I am certified to teach), I am not sure I would have remembered either! But still love you always 🙂

      2. I don’t even know if I can do math on the second grade level! Although I placed college-level math scores when I was in high school, which is weird.

    1. Right!!?? My point exactly. Although her from the heart questions about love, dreams and kindness are my personal favorites. That’s why I had kids! To teach happiness and kindness. Eh, bongs and wind are fun too.

  6. Eli! I loved every part of writing this post. Thank you for having me and my Stormtrooper mask at your blog today.

  7. ahahahaha! Tamara, you are funny, obvs. My little one isn’t asking questions yet… but I see his mind churning so I know it’s only a matter of time. I better get ready… Oh, and I LOVE your pics! Beautiful!

    1. He is probably thinking them up for what to ask you! And thank you so much. You got me so pumped on Twitter yesterday for this post!

  8. Loved these, Tamara!!! I am going to start a notebook now of funny things my son (eventually) asks me, along with our (probably) awkward responses. Makes for a good laugh!

    1. It’s great! I can’t wait to do it more with Des. Conversation is my favorite of their milestones. And I bet he has some interesting things to say that he’s been saving up.

  9. Oh I loved reading this!! I’m preparing for this stage already. My friends usually ask me questions that Reiko may ask one day and I practice answering them including the question of how he came into this world! Hahaha. I laughed at Darth Fader and all other Star Wars thingy! My toddler cousin once asked me how he could turn his play money into real money and I just answered him bluntly with “no, you can’t..” Hmmfff. Lol

    1. Today… Scarlet asked me how to get a baby in my belly! Now why couldn’t this have been last week so it could have made it in this post?

    1. Girl, I love Poop Griffins too but they never show up at my house, or more specifically, in the litterbox. I never stop dreaming, though.

  10. Haha! I love the not till she’s 18 (or 33). Then there’s the questions they didn’t know they had…my parents sent a book on where babies come from when my kids were WAY too young, and they opened the box and read it while I was making dinner. Luckily or unluckily for me, I never had to answer any questions because the book described it all with cartoon character details. My youngest who was then in kindergarten yelled “that is the most disgusting thing I have ever seen.” That clued me in that something was happening. But by then it was too late. Thanks Grandma and Grandpa for sending it, and not telling me you sent it. *sarcasm* Seriously though, I wish I had written things down. I have a few funny little things stuck in my head, but most of them just floated away. 😦

    1. I feel like my parents showed us the book when we were very young. My sister said she was very embarrassed and I thought it was neat and that totally set the stage for our future sex lives. Kidding!
      Scarlet asked me to put baby in my belly very recently, like yesterday. I wonder how she thinks it gets there.

  11. answerOh man, that made me laugh. I’m old and decrepit now, and can’t remember what my kids asked me, except for my almost four year old when I was pregnant with my third. “I know the baby is growing in your tummy, but how did it get there in the first place?” This wasn’t a question she posed when we were watching TV or at the dinner table, no, she asked it in a doctor’s waiting room filled to capacity. The guy sitting opposite laughed, gave me an evil grin and said, “Get out of that one.” Phew!!! saved by the bell. Well actually, saved by the doctor who called us into his consulting room right at that moment. Yaaay, didn’t have to worry about answering that until she was at least 18 (or 33).

    1. Ha! I seriously need to read up on all of this and what is appropriate to say and when! I’m a big fan of the truth and all, but I don’t want to scar my kids!

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