This week's blog post is by WDP co-host Matt Rocco, who
lives in the Edgewater Glen neighborhood of Chicago with Professor
Foster (his non-white, non-dad wife), their daughter Viva,
Chicago's classiest snowman, and high blood pressure.
Daddy's Journal: Saturday, December 14, 2013
The Snowman Cometh
Today, 2-year-old Viva and I are going to build her first
snowman! I'm don't recall exactly the last time I built a snowman,
but I don't think I was much older than her, and I'm pretty sure
the U.S. Embassy in Tehran was under siege. This will be a perfect
traditional snowman: top hat, scarf, carrot, coal, the whole
10:00 a.m.: Helping Viva put on her new snow pants, her new
boots, her scarf, her hat, and her waterproof gloves.
10:10 a.m.: Chasing Viva down the hall holding her scarf, hat,
waterproof gloves, and one of her new boots. Just remembered I
forgot the top hat I was going to put on the snowman at my
10:20 a.m.: Snow pants, coat, scarf, hat and other boot are
finally on Viva. First boot is back off, haven't seen the
waterproof gloves since 10:15.
10:30 a.m.: Playing in the snow. Is this the coldest December
anywhere ever? Viva is begging me to make "snowballs for her
snowman like Frosty" - this stuff won't pack. How do you make
a snowman again?
10:40 a.m.: Why don't I have my own snow pants? Viva won't stop
throwing snow at me and asking, "When will the snowman will be
tall?" Snow starting to pack, probably from the moisture of my
10:50 a.m.: Don't you roll snowballs around to make a snowman?
That's what they do in Calvin and Hobbes anyway. I'm
kneeling in the snow smooshing it into piles. Passersby ask what
we're doing. Viva replies, "we're building a snowman like Frosty."
Mostly we're freezing the skin off Daddy's legs.
11:10 a.m.: The snowman parts are completed, and he will stand a
head and a half taller than Viva, with garden stakes as an
endoskeleton! Asked Viva what she thinks: "I want to go upstairs
and watch Jake [and the Neverland Pirates]."
11:20 a.m.: Trying to mix it up for Viva by bringing her to
Dominick's to buy a carrot for the snowman's nose and some coal.
Chose the perfect package of carrots - fat with pointy ends - this
is going to be the perfect traditional snowman. Forgot the
Dominick's is closing, only one perfect package of carrots
11:25 a.m.: Grocery stores don't seem to sell coal. I don't
think I've ever seen this many people in here.
11:30 a.m.: In line to buy these damned carrots. This Dominick's
is a madhouse with people trying to buy up the last of the
groceries before it goes out of business. Everyone has multiple
heaping carts. We have one bag of carrots.
11:35 a.m.: Still in line. The sign says 15 items or less in the
self-checkouts, you illiterate wretches! I HAVE ONE BAG OF CARROTS!
This Dominick's is as close to World War Z as I ever want to be.
Viva wants down from the cart.
11:38 a.m.: Viva dropped the carrots. The tips all broke
11:40 a.m.: Carrots aren't listed in the self-checkout computer.
Leaving the carrots in the cart and walking out. Viva, like almost
every person in the Dominick's, is screaming.
11:50 a.m.: At the yarn boutique. The sales lady is letting Viva
pick out vintage buttons to put on our snowman.
12:00 p.m.: I have $5 in buttons and I'm carrying $3 in cash. It
is rude to use a credit card for purchases under $10 in a mom and
pop store, so Viva is picking out a handmade ornament to push up
12:05 p.m.: I just spent $15 on 10 buttons.
12:15 p.m.: Trying to stack the snowman. Passersby are
delighted. Viva is asking to go upstairs and see Mommy. I tell her
we are almost through and to sort the buttons.
12:16 p.m.: You can't sort buttons in mittens. Viva wants
12:20 p.m.: Snowman is standing! Found the perfect sticks for
arms! Calling Mommy from cellphone and asking her to bring an old
fedora, a scarf, and a snack for Viva, who is hitting the buttons
with the sticks.
12:21 p.m.: Viva saw my phone and is now screaming to watch Jake
[and the Neverland Pirates] on my Disney app. Where is Mommy with
12:22 p.m.: Calling Mommy again -- she tells me it's only been
two minutes since I called. Viva is running towards the front door.
"I don't want to build a snowman! I don't like him!" Buttons are
12:25 p.m.: Mommy came and got Viva, brought me a dumb baby
carrot for the nose. Daddy is alone putting in the yard putting
vintage buttons on a snowman. Passersby are creeped out.
12: 35 p.m.: Upstairs again. My legs burn and my fingers are
numb. Think I pulled a muscle in my shoulder carrying the baby back
from Dominick's. Viva and Mommy are eating lunch. "Mommy is my best
friend that I ever saw," says Viva.
1:30 p.m.: Brought Viva out to see the snowman "we" built. She
gives him a hug. "I like my snowman, Daddy. He is wearing your hat.
He's so funny."
When Viva makes a snowman with her child in 35 years, I look
forward to watching from the window.
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