Raising Vikings
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Raising Vikings

Legos, Bath Time, and the Evening Routine

3 December

Hey dear family! Today after work, we are going to take family photos! It’s the first time we’ve had professional photos taken and it will be so much fun :) I just hope Leslie is in a good mood when she comes home from daycare.

The last couple of days have been so nice. Leslie is over her very short period of tantrums and is just the absolute sweetest, nicest little girl the world could ever ask for. Her vocabulary is really expanding rapidly and she can put together sentences of more than 10 words! She is so kind and so good at sharing… even the last bite of yoghurt or her last slice of apple she will give to me if I jokingly ask for it and she’ll say “here you go papa” and won’t take no for an answer when I tell her it’s all hers and I was just joking. Hahaha. So adorable.

We have been playing with Legos (Duplo) which is so much fun. She loves putting things together and it is so cool to finally be really doing things together like playing and interacting with her. Plus, legos are always cool 😎

Leslie playing with Legos… coolest thing ever! 😁👍

Last night, she woke up thirsty so I went into her room and gave her the water bottle and then she held it for me and said “papa drink” and after I sipped water, she patted me on the head and then laid down on her pillow and put her arm over my shoulder to snuggle me. Soooo cute!

I had the pleasure of giving Leslie a bath and putting her to bed last night. While this has sometimes been difficult and involved lots of tears and screaming, I think we are finally over that stage (except for the bit about washing hair, when she always gets some water in her eyes). We snuggled and laughed and splashed and played. She squirted her little squirt gun all over the bathroom and squealed with joy whenever she saw she was getting me wet. She played with boats and ducks and cups and all manner of floatable things that she would ask me to bring into the tub.

For some reason, I have always viewed bath time as a very idealistic kind of bonding time between parent and child. I remember all the fun I used to have at home when I was small, taking warm bubbles baths and playing with toys and splashing water everywhere while my parents laughed. I absolutely love bath time and hope that she has lifelong memories of fun in the tub. 🛁 💓

Our FAVORITE bath song :) from

When we were all finished, I took a big fluffy pink towel with a hood on it, set it in my lap and motioned for you to come into my arms. You said “hop!” and jumped up as I grabbed you and lifted you up into my lap. I kissed you all over your face and neck and nuzzled into your hair as I tickled you and we both laughed.

After a few minutes of tickling and snuggles, I grabbed a hair brush and slowly started to brush your hair. I learned a VERY important lesson from mommy about combing little girls’ hair: start at the bottom and work out the knots, then slowly work up until you can comb it all without tangles. I mean… this advice sounds intuitive but it was not (for me) and it has made life so much easier when combing your hair after the bath. THANKS MOMMY! ❤ #parenttip1

After bath time, we went up stairs and snuggled on the couch. I turned on some TV program with small baby animals and nice music and then warmed up some milk and a healthy “heart cookie (hjertekjekks)” that mommy makes from nothing but oatmeal and fruit and then forms in heart shapes. You sat in my lap and I kissed you on the top of the head while we slowed down before bedtime.

After about 10 minutes of TV, I brushed your teeth… we have learned that if we say “open” and we start counting to 10, that you will let us brush your teeth for 10 seconds (we count very slow) and it goes much better than trying to force you to brush… which had been a disaster for a while until your clever mommy also found this trick. Sometimes if we need you to open longer, we tell you we saw a monkey or mouse or something in there that you have to open for us to see and then we “grab it” and place it in your hand and you pretend to throw it across the room. That usually makes you laugh and gets us a few extra seconds of brushing. #parenttip2

After brushing, we turned off the TV and I told you to pick up your legos. You put away your toys and then grabbed me by the hand and said it was sleep time. I said “yes, my love”. And we headed downstairs. In your bedroom, I sat in a rocking chair and pulled you up on my lap and then brought up a box full of books for you to choose from. You grabbed the Santa book and we snuggled while I made up a story while flipping through the pages.

Then, I said “now it’s sleep time” and you slid down off my lap and walked over to your bed where you climbed over the rail (instead of walking through your “door”) and then you hopped a few times before I put my head on your pillow and told you in a more stern voice “Leslie, playtime is over. Now it’s time to sleep. Come and snuggle.” You laid down with your face in front of mine and started singing as I stroked your hair and kissed your forehead. After a few minutes, when you were calmed down, I said “now papa is going to leave, but I will be back”. You said “papa now, I want snuggles” and I said “now, Leslie needs to sleep. I will snuggle on you more after.” And then I got up and slowly walked out, as we have practiced many times. I left soft piano music playing which you listened to until you fell asleep a few minutes later.

This evening routine and putting you to bed has not always been easy… and it’s not always easy now… but we are getting very good at it and you understand that you are not the boss, but we are. You also understand that you should sleep in your own bed the whole night, which is great for us. We love snuggling with you in our bed more than anything… but it sets a bad routine. We are very proud of you and very glad that you are such a big (little) girl. We love you, Leslie.

In the evening, I snuggled on mommy on the couch for a few minutes and rubbed on “baby” in her belly, before using the last of my energy to drag myself to the gym for an hour. There’s not a lot of “free time” in the days anymore, but I would not change any of it for the world.

“I love you my family, with all of my heart, amen!” ❤ ❤ ❤

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David Smith

David Smith

Hubby & daddy. USMC veteran. Marketing professional. Entrepreneur. I like mountains, whisky, travel and mischief. Live in Norway. Insta: @americanvikinginnorway