Category Archives: EHW

More Things Emerson Says..

I hope to never forget this amazing period of time with the expansion of vocabulary and understanding of the world. There are truly some remarkable things that I hear everyday and I just want to capture/share a few

“Dad, don’t you know I love you very much?”

“I just want to sit across from your beautiful brown eyes”
Dad: “I love you”
E: “I love you too much”
Anytime I wear a button down shirt: “Dad, you are handsome like a prince!”

The Story of “John Tonto”

I wonder sometimes what my kids will remember from this period of their lives. It’s been so much fun watching them experience new things and just show them the world. I don’t remember much (or anything) from when I was 2 1/2 or 4 1/2 years old…but I think there are probably some foundation pieces that are still in my subconscious.

Which brings me to “John Tonto”. I have been getting a lot of telemarketer calls lately for reasons I don’t know why and I wish would STOP. Let’s just say I’m not always the happiest to receive these calls and sometimes I let it be known.

One day while E and I were out running errands, I got such a call and I told the person to “lose my number and never call me again”. Since it’s out of my typical nature to talk that way in front of my kid (who I had almost forgotten was in the car), she, of course, inquired who I was talking to. Instead of explaining that it was a telemarketer, I made up a person. “John Tonto”.

I thought it’d be a one-time thing. Never talked about again.


It’s been almost 3 months and when the kids use their toy cell phones, they pretend that “John Tonto” is calling them and get upset and hang up on him. They make me pretend that he is calling me and get upset. Emerson has even got her brother in on the act.

Sample Interaction:

  • E: Dad, pretend someone is calling you..
  • D: OK (picks up pretend phone and holds it to ear)
  • E: Dad, who’s calling you?
  • D: John Tonto
  • E: Ugh. Tell him to stop calling you all the time! Grrrr
  • L: (something unintelligible but it sounds like mock anger)

I hope I never forget this memory of them….and that “JT” loses my number 🙂





My Smart Girl

I am obviously biased but I think my E is pretty smart. Not Nobel Prize or braniac super smart. But there are sometimes she’ll say something that I didn’t think she’d be able to comprehend or had no idea where she would have learned it where I just stop and we had the following conversation.

Daddy: How do you know that?

E: Cause I’m smart
The thing is. She says it with such authority and with no pause. I love her confidence. I wonder if that’s something she made up on her own, got from a show or has heard from a daycare teacher, babysitter, gymnastics coach or dance instructor? Or something she had picked up from hearing Becky and I talk about her.
Kid, you are smart…and don’t you ever forget it.

Could NOT be prouder…

Our biggest little had her first dance recital this past Saturday. It was quick, complicated and BEAUTIFUL!

Her and Becky got their makeup done that morning and both looked awesome. Only an hour of work by Independence High’s best makeup girls (Thanks!)

I have watched the video of her dancing on stage so many times I will probably wear it out (j/k). Much different than last year’s summer dance recital, that’s for sure!

Love you E. The world is yours!

Like father, like daughter……

I am a black man who went to a mostly white K-12 school system and then a mostly white K-12 college. And I work in a field that is…well, you get the jist. I, however, have to straddle both worlds because on the outside I still look different. I’ve made my peace with it and tend to generally ignore world events for my own sanity and because I narrow my world to only the ones I know and love.

My daughter and son are in a daycare that is mostly white(actually all white, except for them) in a mostly white city, neighborhood and community…stop me if this is sounding like deja vu.

I was stopped in my tracks by something that happened the other day on a little daddy-daughter outing. I know this will change in the future and as she ages but for now, I want to bottle up this innocence and spray it whenever life gets touch.

My daughter picked out this doll at the store the other day because it looks like her. Because of the hair.

Why can’t it just always be this simple?

“I got it”

I have been on a word kick lately. There’s this phrase my daughter uses a lot now. It’s as simple as this: “I got it”. She uses it when she wants to buckle the top part of her seat belt herself (always). She uses it when we say she can have a Popsicle. She uses it when we ask her to get her shoes. You get the jist. She has got it.

What’s really cool about it is the confidence. It’s like she’s already separating from us and becoming independent. And we have given her the space to do this. Sure, we sometimes follow too close and don’t want her to fall down or make a big mess or make a mistake. But she also has been enabled by us to do things on her own and to know that we have her back should she mess up. And where did she learn this phrase? From us. Like if Becky needs a fork from the kitchen, I would say “I got it”. If I ask Becky to pick up a prescription from the store while out shopping, she’s “got it”. Three such simple words but such a different reason when used by a 3 year old and a mid 30’s person.

Sometimes, it really pays to listen to your crazy kid. They are saying more than you think.