abc’s

Fridge Wisdom: ¡Gracias, pero no gracias!

November 2, 2011 | By Brent Almond | THINGS MY KID DIGS

Like any perfect parent, I have kept JJ from watching TV before the age of two, since pediatricians recommend they have very limited exposure up until that age. Umm… no. Like any good American, TV is my back-up entertainer, schoolteacher and tranquilizer. It’s how I was raised, and I turned out okay. Ish.

Also like any good American (of a certain age), I learned the most from Sesame Street. Counting. ABCs. How to tell when one thing is not like the other. And of course Spanish. Mucho, mucho Spanish.

And speaking of Spanish… There are a lot more options vying for my toddler’s attention, and Sesame Street is pretty low on his radar. Not so low—much to my chagrin—is Dora. You know, The (bilingual) Explorah. As a designer, I must say the animation is pretty abhorrent (what’s with the disembodied eyebrows?!?) As an adult, the repetitiveness of the dialog drives me loco. And the whole talking to the kids through the screen bit? Very creepy.

But as a parent, I must admit JJ has learned quite a bit, from this adventuresome tot and her boot-wearing monkey. Probably because they hammer it into his tiny, impressionable skull. And unfortunately not a lot of what he learns is very useful.

So a big ¡Gracias, pero no Gracias! to Dora for teaching JJ such essential words as:

How about teaching some phrases helpful in everyday life? Something like:


Or perhaps:

So what random and totally pointless thing did your rugrat learn from the boob tube?

Fridge Wisdom

October 1, 2011 | By Brent Almond | MAKING MEMORIES

I had an idea a while back* — inspired by my blog’s masthead — to spell witty (and hopefully sometimes wise) things on the fridge using the magnet letters we seem to be accruing at an alarming rate (we’re up to 3 sets). As with any idea that requires more than me sitting on my ass at the computer, it took a while to get around to it. But at long last here I am, presenting my first installment of…

As I was playing around with this, I decided there needed to be some rules to keep it interesting (for me at least) and from getting out of control. Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

1. I can only spell words using the magnets I currently own (no Photoshopping in additional “T”s if I want to spell “temper tantrum” and only have one).

2. I can, however, manipulate letters to form different letters. (The “d” in “Fridge” is a “P” turned on its head)

3. I can use other, non-letter magnets – if needed – to spell a word. (See Starbucks magnet above)

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DDQ&A: Brandon Peat

March 28, 2011 | By Brent Almond | DESIGN STUFF

A while back a friend shared a link to an out-of-this-world adorable alphabet a designer had illustrated for his impending son. More on those ABC’s in the interview below with brand-spanking-new dad, Brandon Peat…

Q&A with designer dad Brandon Peat

Tell me briefly about your design business and what kinds of clients you have.
I graduated from college in 2007, and was soon hired by a prominent ad agency in Fort Wayne, Indiana as an Art Director. I gradually expanded into the role of Interactive Developer as well, and after two and a half years decided to strike out on my own. That was January 2010, and I’ve been successfully full-time freelance since then – now operating as Brandon Peat Design, LLC.

I specialize in illustrative design and interactive Flash development, though I have experience in every area of design and enjoy being able to bounce between them as the job requires. My main clients are design agencies who lack a full-time web, Flash, or video specialist, but I’m always engaged in a smattering of jobs from individuals as well. I’m always looking for new clients, too!

How long have you been a dad? How many kids? Ages?
I am a new dad! My first son, Tycho Maximus Peat, is about four months old. We definitely plan on having more, but hopefully not for a while yet!

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