10 June 2008

Suburbia, with Swing Set


We finally broke down and bought the kids a swing set for the backyard. Yes, we're a 3-minute walk from the park. But hey, all the neighbors have one -- we were feeling swingerly challenged.

The box said it should take about 6 hours to setup. Before picking a set, we surfed for comments. Some people said it took them 10 hours. Some people said they got so frustrated that they took it all apart and returned it to the store. We were not dissuaded.

It probably took us the full six hours, although at least a third of that is because I had such good help. Trinhity's actually quite good -- she knows the names of more tools than Mama does. This pleases the Daddy.

Two episodes merit mention. At one point, I was struggling to tighten a nut with a crescent wrench. Trinh asked if I needed help. I said, "Yes. I need a 7/16" socket and a 3/8" ratchet. Can you grab that for me?" "Sure, Daddy!"

Get this: she did. She waltzed right over to the tool box, full of 50 sockets (metric and old school) and 3 different ratchets. Somehow, miraculously, she brought me....a 7/16" socket with the 3/8" ratchet, not the 1/2" driver that was sitting right next to it.

I could not have been more stunned. She trotted off like it was no big deal.

But later in the day, long after she should have eaten an afternoon snack (bad Daddy!), she asked, "Daddy, are you finished yet?" I said, "No, dear, not yet."

"Daddy, why aren't you finished yet?" "Well," I replied, "I'm almost done. But I need that hammer over there -- would you get it for me?"

She rolled her eyes. I asked again, not impatient. She trudged over, hauled up the hammer (at least half her weight) and lugged it over to me. When she handed it to me, she said, "Daddy, you make Trinh tired. You make me get this hammer for you. You make me get all those tools for you. Daddy, you make Trinh Trinh tired!"

Awwww. But at least she brought me the hammer....


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