Tag Archives: Parent

Good Dads Need to Be Celebrated

While my kids don’t have the perfect dad, he’s pretty darn close. And I’m not sure whether they know it. It’s one of those things they may not know until they have kids of their own. But one day they’ll know.

Along my blogging way, I’ve met many dads who feel that fatherhood is shortchanged. Good dads need to be celebrated.

My husband is one of those dads. Although I usually write about my experiences as a mom, today I’m going to talk about him. I usually write about my decisions as a parent, but the truth is, he’s the other half of my team. I only give my side of the story. I couldn’t do my part without his.

1. From the moment my son was born, my husband dove into fatherhood. He took an entire month off work to be with his newborn son. Paternity leave. At night we took shifts on the couch with pillows propped precariously so we could get some sleep, the only thing that worked. Warming bottles of formula and changing a soiled diaper became an Olympic two-person sport at which we became adept in our sleep-deprived fury.

2. Night-time wakings have cursed this house for many years. As soon as our babies cried out, my husband’s feet hit the floor and he zipped across the hall before I had even sat up and opened my eyes. I’d walk in to find him already rocking and shushing. Never did my husband complain that this getting up in the night business was my job.

3. He has slept countless nights on our kids’ floors when they couldn’t fall back to sleep, covered around only his torso with a thin baby blanket and using a stuffed animal as a pillow if that’s all that was available.

4. He plays with the kids every evening after dinner, whether it’s wrestling, tag, a card game, catch, hide-and-seek, kickball, or just taking a walk. Every night he is a family man first, human playground second.

5. While I tend to act like a 10-year-old 90 percent more often than he does, he always makes dinner more lively when he tries to lick his plate when no one is looking or keeps a serious face when he sticks his smelly foot in your face and asks, “Hey, does my foot stink?” It’s the element of surprise that gets us every time.

6. He doesn’t always let the kids win. If you play a game with him, you’re on your own. My kids will be better for it when they’re older, though right now I don’t think they’d agree.

7. He does my daughter’s hair in the morning and lets her pick out her clothes because if I do it, the morning starts out in tears. When he does it, fits of giggles echo down the hall.

8. He doesn’t miss a game, a practice, a play, anything. Though I don’t need to reveal our sideline conversations. The kids should never hear those.

When we have a rough time in our small family, my husband and I get through it and then we laugh. There’s no one else I’d want to muddle through parenthood with.

Happy Father’s Day to all the wonderful dads out there who are their family’s heroes.

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The Top 10 Reasons I Can’t Wait to Get Home From a Trip

Our recent Thanksgiving trip reminded me of the joys we face each time we travel. We do it to see loved ones. We do it for fun. We do it because we can’t spend 365 days holed up in this house together. Why not take our craziness on the road, spend a load of cash, and wonder why we don’t do this more often? That’s what I’m wondering by the end of every trip….

10) My daughter, who can hold it all day no matter how much I beg, suddenly has to go when we’ve reached the rural part of our trip and no businesses can be seen for many miles.

9) When the cooler is empty, the kids can’t agree on which disgusting fast-food restaurant we’ll dine at. Then whoever picked it will inevitably not like their dry, crusty meal. Someone always has to return to the counter for sauce, and the workers don’t see you standing there no matter how long you patiently wait.

8) At any roadside location the bathroom stalls, hardly large enough for me to turn around and squat in, can be excruciatingly small when you are trying to avoid the liquid on the floor, cover the seat with tissue, and keep your daughter’s pants from touching anything. Somehow I have managed on past trips to hold an infant on my hip, expertly maneuver button and zipper with one hand, and keep my toddler standing and out of said puddles with my patented whisper-scream all in this 1-foot-by-1-foot space. Oh it can be done.

7) The kids fight for the top bunk, bottom bunk, left side of the bed, or right side of the bed, and the loser makes sure the night is ruined for the rest of us. One kid wants the light on; one wants the light off. One wants music on; one does not. Just GO TO SLEEP!

6) The later the kids go to bed, the earlier they wake up in the morning.

5) Forgetting my husband’s deodorant means he has to use mine. He smells lovely and breezy for a few hours. When I use my tube the next day, I find some really, really long hairs glued to it. Gross.

4) No matter what thrilling event you have spent hours planning for the next day, the kids will gripe that it’s boring and their feet hurt, and you can forget any educational stuff you looked up. They don’t want to hear it.

3) The last hour of the trip, they must ask every two minutes, “When are we going to be there?” Now I know how my dad felt.

2) When we finally pull in the driveway, the kids can only carry one thing and they both have to go to the bathroom—the same one—at the same time.

1) Man, I don’t care how much laundry there is. There’s no place like home.

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Filed under Can't Get a Break