My wife and I recently had our 4th child, and if you've read some of my other parenting blog posts, you may ask: "But, Mike, I thought your other 3 kids already drive you crazy?" They do! I had the 4th one to punish the first 3. One day, when they were pulling some of their usual malarky, I was like: "That's IT! I've had it! Your mom and I are having another baby! Now we'll never have time to take you to activities!" And the other 3 kids were like: "Nooooo!!!!!!!!!!!" 

It was a fun day.

But I think we're going to stop at 4. Because 4 is when people start asking questions behind your back.

1: "I wonder why they're having so many kids?"

2: "Is it a religion thing?"

1: "No, I heard that some of these progressive-types are just having, like, lots of kids so they will all grow up and vote for Bernie and work on a collective farm that grows Kombucha and seaweed crackers."

2: "Really?"

1: "Yeah, and they wear their kids all the time -- day and night -- in colorful mini-hammocks, slung over their shoulder. Till the kids are, like, in high school."

2: "Really?!"

1: "That's what I heard."

Not to mention, there is no practical reason to have 4 kids. I've been thinking about this for years now, and started compiling an extensive list that I call: "RAYGUN'S COMPLETE LIST OF THINGS A TODDLER WON'T HELP YOU WITH." 

Here's a sampling:

That last one, the Legos one, is important to add. Because some activities that are supposed to be for kids are often ruined by kids.

Their outlandish demands are rivaled only by their outlandish expectations. 

Once, I had to be out the door with my youngest son in only a few minutes and, like all good terrorists, he knew the moment was right to strike:

He brought me an egg carton, scissors, tape, and said:"Make this into a bear." 

I thought: "I'll give it a shot. I'll make him something, avoid a meltdown, and get out of here." And in about 2 minutes I made something that -- and I don't want to brag -- looked pretty f'ing good. I thought to myself: "Holy S! I did it! This kind of looks like a bear! I avoided a pre-car-trip meltdown! Mike! Mike! Mike!"

My son looked at it and said: "I said a BEAR, not a VOLCANO!" 

And I had to take him into the car screaming, anyway. 

So as I prepare to take my small army of humans to Thanksgiving Dinner, I start running through the different scenarios, like, "I wonder who will throw up all over the kitchen this year," or "I hope they don't ask grandma why she 'cooked diarrhea' and is putting it on the mashed potatoes."  

Then my mind wanders to Uncle Chad (not his real name), who is bound to interrupt someone's story about the weather with an anecdote about the "total BS that WAS called global warming and is now 'climate change'" before he segues into his opinion on "this whole bathroom thing" and from there transitions to "and you don't hear them talking about Bill Clinton, do you? Or Hillary? Not once! It's the total hypocrisy that gets me." 

Then I remember: I've got a toddler! 

"Hey buddy," I'll whisper to whichever kid is in the worst mood, "you know who's really good at turning an egg carton into a bear? Your Great-Uncle Chad! Why don't you go over and ask him to do it." 

Looks like "RAYGUN'S COMPLETE LIST OF THINGS A TODDLER WILL HELP YOU WITH" just logged it's first entry: