Kevin Hellriegel's Blog of Worthless Advice

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Tag Archives: parents

Someone is having a bad day—U-Haul crashes into Historic Seattle Landmark

Sometimes you just want to move your belongings from one place to another.  These poor folks decided to take their U-Haul moving truck through the beautiful Seattle Arboretum.  Why not?  It’s a short cut, it’s a nice drive, and what could go wrong?  Click on the link to KOMO news (one of our local broadcast news channels).

I’m hoping they opted for the “extra insurance coverage”.  I know your regular auto insurance usually covers small accidents but most of us have deductibles ranging from $100 to $1000.  The one time I opted for the additional coverage when I rented a moving van (14 years ago), it was worth it.  It was a small additional charge that covered EVERYTHING.  I managed to scrap a long line in the wood deck of the Public Storage moving van and they wanted to charge me for it.  It was a moving van and it was normal wear and tear.  Then the guy saw I had opted for the additional coverage and said I didn’t have to worry about it.

If you think about it, unless you are a commercial truck driver and use to a large vehicle, it makes sense to get the extra coverage and talk with your insurance coverage before you rent the truck.  Sure, it is cool you are moving from your parents’ basement into an overpriced apartment near Green Lake, but you need to cover yourself.  Think how this poor guy’s weekend is now ruined.

Click on the link below to check out more photos.

http://komonews.com/news/local/u-haul-truck-crashes-into-historic-seattle-landmark

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Thank You Idiot Parent Dropping off Your Kid at school today; you make my day even more miserable than it already is.

Parent drop offThe last day of school was last Friday and it was the last time I dropped off my spoiled little princess for the school year.  Sure, we should make her walk the half mile to school but we don’t.  We would much rather subject ourselves to the misery of the Student Drop Off Line in the morning.  You would think that after 180 days of dropping off their kids, more parents wouldn’t be complete idiots when it comes to dropping off their kids in front of the school.

Seriously, they have had 180 drop offs.  Can’t they figure this out by now?  But every morning when I drop off my princess, some moron in front of me stops short and plugs up the whole system.  It really isn’t that difficult to figure out that you drive all the way to the end of the semi-circle driveway and then drop off your kid.  You don’t stop at the beginning and let them out.  When you drop them off at the beginning, it stops the whole flow.

See all the free space in front of you?  Use your common sense and move up.  See all the cars behind you WAITING for you to move?   That’s because we aren’t morons and can see that there are other parents that are dropping off their kids too.  We know that we need to move as far up as possible so that the whole system works.  You, on the other hand, are a complete moron who thinks of no one but themselves.

I bet you hate puppies and snowflakes too.

Maybe next year, you can figure out this incredibly easy drop off system.  Until school starts up again in the fall, I bid you a fond farewell.

Back to School and a Ruined Labor Day Weekend

Here in Washington State, our school kids don’t go back to school until the last week of August or the first week of September. In fact, my kids went back to school on August 28. In comparison, the Seattle School District started yesterday September 3, 2014. This makes a heck of a lot more sense than starting August 28, going to school for two days, and then having Labor Day weekend off. It puts a bitter taste on the last week of August and Labor Day. You can’t milk summer out for a bit longer. Instead, you must think of getting your kids back in time for starting school on Thursday before Labor Day weekend.

It isn’t like anything is done the first two days of school when you have Labor Day weekend right there. Everyone knows that Thursday and Friday (before the Labor Day weekend) are “throwaway” days of education. You might as well let the kids watch TV because they sure aren’t paying attention to the teachers during those two days of school.

Labor Day Weekend wasn’t ruined for me. I always have fun. This year instead of heading to Anderson Island for the three day weekend, we went camping at Sun Lakes State Park. It was a good choice because we left the rain behind. Sun Lakes is located on the eastern side of Washington, roughly three hours away from our house. While western Washington might be experiencing rain and misery, the eastern side of the state will have sunshine, rainbows, and unicorns. Well, maybe not unicorns and rainbows but you get the idea. The weather is nice. We don’t have lots of rain and huddle under blue tarps. In eastern Washington, we don’t do the “blue tarp” camping made famous on the west side of the state. In eastern Washington, you slap on the sun block (SPF 45) and a big hat

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What lurks beneath the waters of this lake?

What lurks beneath the waters of this lake?

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It's all fun and games until someone falls off the cliffs!

It’s all fun and games until someone falls off the cliffs!

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On the negative side, it was windy in the evenings and the state park was full. Truth be told, it was very windy and miserable in that respect. The first night was bad. The tent was flapping around, keeping both myself and my wife wide awake. You would drift off to sleep, and then a gust of wind would pop up and wake you up. The second night, the wind was just as bad but I wore my ear plugs and I enjoyed the evening a bit more.

Sun Lakes State Park has a few different lakes within the park boundaries. On Sunday, we hiked along the Deep Lake Trail which was about 2 to 2.5 miles round trip. It goes right along the lake and is an easy hike. There is an opportunity to do some cliff diving or jumping off the cliff edge but we didn’t do it this trip. Perhaps next time we can jump off some basalt rock cliffs into the water below, have a scary monster grab us and drag us under.

I did manage to get some swimming in Sun Lake itself with my daughter and her friend. The weather was a bit cloudy, the wind was blowing, and the water was a little colder than I would have preferred. However, it was probably going to be the last swim of summer so I toughed it out. I’m not a little baby (well, I really am but I try to act tough).

My son and I also did a twilight walk where he was almost hit by a bat. Lots of bats on the Park Lake Trail, however I can’t complain about the bats because they keep the bug population down. Go bats!

Overall, the camping trip was a good one. No flat tires, no lost sleeping bags. The drive home wasn’t too bad. I’d go again but probably opt for a RV campsite further and with less wind.

 

Thanks for reading and your comments are always welcome!

An Open Letter to Every Moron Parent Who Drops their Kids Off at School-

Dear Idiot Parent:

I’ve been dropping off my various kids at our elementary school for the past several years and I fully understand how this simple drop off system works.  You drive up to the school, you drop off your child, they shut the door, and you drive away.  However, you (the complete idiot parent) can’t seem to understand the simple concept that if you stop, all the cars behind you also have to stop.  Allow me to expand on how traffic flows at our school and in the rest of the world of cars, trucks, and motorcycles work in real life.

It really isn’t too hard to figure out that if there are no cars in front of you, you move your vehicle all the way to the end of the drop off lane. You don’t stop at the beginning of the drop off lane to let your kid out when there are roughly twenty cars behind you and three buses all trying to get in to the school parking lot at the same time.  I’m sure you never noticed them as you only had to drive 5 mph because there were so many cars ahead of you doing the exact same thing as you: dropping off their kid at school.  This is the part when you drive to the end of the drop off lane, and then let your kid out.

And Yes, that was me behind you blaring my truck horn when you stop at the beginning of the drop off lane.  Do you know why?  Frankly, it is because you are stupid.  Why kind of moron thinks that is a good place to drop off their kid?  Oh, that would be you.   Like I previously stated, you need to drive to the end of the drop off lane so the rest of the twenty cars can drive in behind you.  It isn’t that hard of a concept to understand.  EVERYDAY, it is the same system and routine.  It isn’t that hard to figure out.

I think this is a good time to mention that you are also the same stupid parent that doesn’t bother to have their child buckled into the backseat or puts four kids in the backseat (where everyone knows has only three seatbelts).  Unlike you, I’m not a moron.  I can clearly see that when your kid is leaning forward in his seat that he isn’t wearing his seatbelt.  And I can see this when we are still a quarter of a mile away from the school.  Can you please strap your kid in?  Use your adult brain just a little bit more in the morning?

Now, I know my school isn’t the only place where this happens.  I understand we all have moron parents at our own various schools across the world and there is nothing we can do about it.  Sure you can honk your car horn like I do but they still don’t understand why they are morons.  You could yell at them like I did when the mom blocked the crosswalk and the 50 students and parents couldn’t cross the street.  Half the school is trying to cross the street and she is blocking the crosswalk.  Brilliant!  Simply brilliant!

As always, your comments are welcome and enjoyed by all that read my blog.  So fire off some tad bits of wisdom!

How to Stop Your Kids From Whining and Be an Awesome Parent!

 If you didn’t know this already….kids whine and they whine a lot.  They whine about the color of their shoes, they whine when they are hungry, they whine when you forget to pick them up from school three times in row. 

Most likely, they learned the whining from your spouse (or ex-spouse).  Don’t worry; you aren’t to blame.  All the bad traits come from your spouse.  They are probably big whiners and passed this annoying behavior onto your children.  While it might be too late for your spouse to change, you can at least mold your mini-me into the person you were too lazy to become.

You can keep your kids from whining by following these worthless parenting tips from your favorite Uncle Kevin (or your Cousin Kevin or your Idol Kevin…you pick which name you like best for me).  In a short few hours, your child will stop whining and you’ll be able to leave a nice comment for me below.

 Listen to Your Child:

Whining is usually a call for attention from your child.  This means you should probably put down your smartphone and pay attention to your child for one brief moment.  Listen to them for that few seconds so they feel important and loved.  You aren’t actually going to do anything besides listen to them for a few seconds, so don’t worry if you were a little slow on getting that Facebook post up; you still have time to post how cute your child is or to share the latest blog post from Kevin Hellriegel’s Worthless Advice Blog.

Play the “I Don’t Know You” Game

When your child begins to whine, play the “I Don’t Know You” game.  To play, you simply pretend you don’t have a clue who this whining kid is next you.  It is really fun at the shopping mall when security comes and takes your child away.  The whining stops immediately and is replaced with the look of utter terror on your child’s face as security drags your kid away.  It truly warms one’s heart when your child realizes you aren’t going to save them.  Then the whining will stop for sure.

Schedule “Whining” Time

Allow your kids to whine.  Of course, you won’t be there to hear them but at least they can whine.  I personally like to schedule whining time outside, in the rain, on a Thursday afternoon when I’m not home but the kids are.  Whine away, kids, whine away because your parents aren’t listening.

Ignore Them to Discourage Whining

You could listen to them or you could ignore them.  Just like you ignore the salad on your dinner plate, you can ignore the whiner.  The whining won’t disappear but you can at least toss it into the trash just like the salad.

Have a Whining Bank

If they want to whine, just let them know they are taking a loan from the Whining Bank.  To pay back this loan from the bank, they get to work for you doing the worst of the household chores: picking up dog poop, changing Grandpa’s diaper, eating leftovers from three weeks ago (because we don’t waste food in our house you spoiled whiny brat!).  If they don’t want to do chores you can introduce them to Vinny the Chores Enforcer and his baseball bat.

Overschedule Your Child

There is nothing better than having your child doing too many activities causing them to be too exhausted to even think about whining to you.  As an added bonus, you can then be that martyr parent that is so busy.  You can talk about how busy you are driving the kids around from place to place and you have no time for yourself.  Yet you have time to post comments on Facebook.  Every heard of reading a book while you are at the tennis lesson

Add a few of your whining comments below and complain about how unfair I am.  Go ahead…whine away!

Camping: Your Solution to Making Sure Your Kids Don’t Live With You Forever

Right now your children might be young and you think (hopefully to yourself) that they’ll accomplish anything they set their mind to.  Or maybe your kids are teenagers and your neighbor told you that their child didn’t blossom until they were 27 or 28 years old thus giving you a little piece of hope.  Or maybe your kid is 20, has dropped out of community college for the third time (in three attempts), lives in your basement, plays Black Ops all day, and will look for a job “tomorrow” (after he has his kill streak up to 70).

I hate to be the bearer of bad news but…the hard sad fact is that most likely your kids are losers and will be living in your basement for the rest of their lives.  Oh sure, they’ll move out for a year or maybe two, but they’ll be back…or will they?

Hmm, camping!

Let me introduce the concept of camping and how it can save you from having your children live with you forever.  Camping is where middle class people go out to the local state park and pretend to be homeless for a few days.  We like to cook our meals on a propane cook stove, wash our dishes in three bins, and use disposable paper plates (screw the environment).  We sleep on an air mattress and enjoy the light cotton sheets that cover us on a warm summer night.  We throw up a nice tarp and call it our outdoor living room/dining room/kitchen.

We set up a fairly well stocked kitchen, fill up some coolers with ice, and tell ourselves that camping is fun and easy.  Once we are out roughing it out in the wilderness of the State Park (with power hook ups, clean water, and a flush toilet a few steps away), we forget that we are camping.   We are on vacation and that we have time to be relaxing under the summer sun.

But will your loser children learn anything from your summer camping experiences?  Probably not.  They are too busy running around with their friends, sun block smeared across their faces, and rat nests for a hairstyle.  They’ll fling themselves into their summer sleeping bags (which are worthless during the other three seasons) and sleep a peaceful night’s sleep.

 This is one of those teachable moments you always hear about from other parents brag about but you never get to do because you are too busy yelling at your kids.

By taking your children camping, you are teaching them that camping is a possible housing solution in their near future.  The day will come when you will want to kick them out.  It might be a few weeks later or a few years later, but the day will come.

And this is a very good thing!  Once they reach the ripe old age of 18 or 30 and don’t plan to do anything with their lives, you can give them the ultimatum: do something or move out!  Heck, it’s your house and your parents didn’t give you a free ride to be a slacker, why should you treat your children any different?

With their summer camping experience under their belt, they will think that they are prepared for the real world.  Kick those leeches to the curb, have those children enjoy all four seasons that this great planet offers us (unless you live near the Equator or Australia or maybe South America). Allow your children the pleasure of sleeping in an igloo where the temperature is just above freezing and the drip drop of the melting snow roof falls on their thin, inadequate summer sleeping bag.  Then they can realize their boots are frozen because they forgot to keep them inside their sleeping bag. Now they have to push their wet socks inside their frozen boots.  Has the fun started yet?

Cooking under the open sky!

Imagine the joy your children can experience camping in the torrential downpour of a spring rainstorm.  Everything they own is soaked with the constant rain and there is no place dry in their tent site.  Nowhere to hang up the soggy towel to dry it out, everything they own is wet and damp.

And where do they plug in their Xbox and TV?  Grand Theft Auto V is going to play itself!  Do they run the power cord from the bathroom to their tent?  Oh, the problem solving they’ll have to do!

What about showers and personal hygiene?   No more 20 minute showers when you have to put in a $1 for a 3 minute shower at the state park.

Where will they wash and dry their clothes?  What happens when the sleeping bag gets a little stinky?

Either your children will quickly learn that this isn’t the lifestyle they want and will do anything to live back indoors OR they will decide that this lifestyle isn’t that bad and they like living in a tent for the rest of their life.  Either way, you’ll be taking the unknown part of your child’s future housing out of their destiny.

Add another “Win” for parenthood in your scoreboard for Parents!

 As always your witty comments are welcome!  Or just hit the like button below.

Psst! I know what is wrong with kids these days….TV viewing is down!

Why America Sucks: The Average Hours per week of TV viewing is down!

It is with great sorrow I must report that today’s children are not watching enough television.  According to this news report out of Minnesota, the Nielsen ratings reported that kids between the age of 2 and 11 watched an average of 24 hours per week.  Shockingly, that is down from 28 hours in the mid-1970s.

No wonder our country is going to hell in a hand basket!  Our kids are watching four hours of less television per week that my generation.  That is just plain awful.  This is trend that must be reverse for the sake of all America!

The good news that is that television can still screw up your kids!  They just need to focus on what kind of television they watch.

The more violent the better!  A recent study says that the type of television (the quality of television) also affects the child’s development.  To no one’s big surprise, the preschool age children who switched from violent television to more educational shows were less aggressive and more kind than the control group.  In the study, the control group didn’t change their television viewing habits.  The study also reported that the control group and the healthy TV group reported watching slightly more TV after the year-long monitoring project.

But don’t despair about TV viewing going down, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation’s (2010) report stated that kids spend an average of 75 hours of media viewing per week.

They broke it down into the following:

The average kid sponges in 2.5 hours of music each day, almost five hours of TV and movies, three hours of Internet and video games, and just 38 minutes of old-fashioned reading.  Sadly, that figure didn’t include the hour and a half spent text messaging each day, and the half hour kids talk on the cell phone.

So if your kid isn’t watching good old fashion TV, then they are on the computer or Smartphone racking up those media hours!  Good for them!   Don’t let us down!

Sorry, this blog post is so short….my daughter needed to rot her brain by playing an online game for 8 hours.  I don’t want her to be below average so she is allowed to play her online game for at least six hours. Then I kick her off to watch TV.  It is all about balance here in my house.

Remember: There are no below average kids in my house!

That’s my worthless advice for today!  As always, your comments on my great parenting tips are always welcome!

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